Jim Lee's Cyclops
It really sucks that the first few batches of Marvel Universe figures were such poor looking toys. By the time the line's designers had gotten their shit together the Philippine distributor had given up on the brand as a lost cause and started lowering their orders for it.
By the time Series 2 started hitting toy stores here (the better designed H.A.M.M.E.R. Files) the number of figures on the shelves had been drastically cut. Having missed several waves, many of the casual collectors decided to sell off their Marvel Universe figures, unwilling to pay the prices needed to complete the line.
When Series 3 (Roger Files?) rolled around, our local distributor was only ordering several dozen boxes. Toy Kingdom and Cybertron Philippines would set up days to distribute the figures, but in order to ensure sell-through, Hasbro and Playkit began selling the figures as sets. This made certain that the less popular figures wouldn't remain to clog shelves. By the end of the first day of these events the sets were normally sold out.
That's where we were at when Wave 13 (Wave 2 of Series 3) dropped. It included 1/18th scale figures of Cable (and a variant with a tiny Baby Hope), a First Appearance Wolverine, Gladiator, Apocalypse, and Cyclops.
We'd gotten numerous Cyclops figures in the past, but most were pretty mediocre (with the exception of the X-Men Origins: Wolverine version in the Astonishing X-Men costume). This one however promised to be pretty gnarly since it was fashioned after Jim Lee's 90's design of the character when he was leading the X-Men's "Blue Team". It was during this period that I first got into comics, so I was elated to get my hands on this guy.
He was worth the wait.
The packaging is the standard Marvel Universe blister pack, except with art by Olivier Coipel this year, replacing Mike Deodato. They've also done away with the file card on the character. I'm not sure how I feel about this. On one hand, I love reading that card and having something to display them with, on the other, they normally end up in a bag, never touched again. I'm glad they decided to keep the figure stand, though. I hate that the ones from Series 1 don't have them.
The sculpt of the figure is spot on with the source material right down to the insane number of straps (most of which are separate pieces from the main body). The 90's loved straps almost as much as it loved pouches and I guess Cyclops has a problem with droopy socks. His build is appropriately "Slim" and tall, giving him much nicer proportions compared to the other figures in the line.
Paint, what there is of it, is OK. He doesn't have many applications because he's cast mostly in colors blue and yellow, which are already the colors he's meant to be dressed in. What a coincidence! The of the applications are limited mainly to a black wash over the figure to bring out the muscles, some skin tone to his face, and a few touches like brown hair and the yellow visor. There are some scratch marks, but I may have been the one to do that...
Oh, and articulation!
Nevermind about articulation. There is absolutely nothing to say about the articulation because it is FUCKING PERFECT!
These are exactly the kind of joints that I look for in a toy, and I'm surprised to see it so well done at this scale. Despite only being about 4" tall, Cyclops packs about 19 or 20 points of articulation on him and all of it is usable.
I squealed like school girl when I opened it and started playing with it.
There's a few points you may want to consider before you get too excited. One, he's got that same annoying problem with his joints that many other Hasbro figures do: the fact that the hinge part of the joint is colored differently from the rest of the limb. Looking at his boots is the most glaring example. Would it have killed Hasbro to make that piece inside yellow?
Second, he's got no accessories. A few of the 3.75" Cyclops figures we've gotten in the past few years have come with removable eye blasts:
It would have been great if they'd given this one the same thing. Hell, make it several eye blasts, each with a different intensity. That would have upped his play value exponentially.
Third, despite his superb articulation, he still can't quite reach that button on his visor.
Honestly, you should just stop reading this review right now and go out and buy this toy at any cost. It is so much better than anything else that has come before it.