There are some superheroes that, in hindsight, seem a little dumb. I remember when Marrow and Maggot were first introduced (both created by Scott Lobdell and Joe Madureira, one of my favorite creative teams on the X-books): I thought they were both awesome. A Morlock girl with an attitude and bones growing out of her skin and a South African who had sentient mutant slugs in place of his digestive system. They weren’t pretty mutants like the original X-Men. These were extreme X-Men (it was the ‘90s) that pushed the limits.
Of course, now, everyone thinks these two characters were completely ridiculous. While I don’t agree (ridiculous are the mutants that came out around the time Morrison took over – Look up Beak), it’s hard to argue a point that’s so subjective.
It kind of makes me wonder how Fantomex will fare after a decade or two.
Fantomex is another mutant created by Grant Morrison for a story they did in New X-Men after the destruction of Genosha. Though I missed that arc, New Worlds, where he was introduced as a thief selling information about the project that created Wolverine, I picked it back up with issue #142 when Chris Bachalo came on board with Assault on Weapon Plus. I don’t remember much about the story, but the art was awesome and Fantomex looked like a bad ass.
As a product of the Weapon Plus program (he is Weapon XIII), Fantomex’ powers are derived from their “nanosentinel technology” (whatever that means). His abilities included "enhanced strength, speed, agility, dexterity, reflexes and reactions, coordination, balance, and endurance" as well as better than human hearing and a healing factor. In addition to all of that, he's also got three three brains, magical mutant bullets, a mask that makes him immune to telepathic attack, extensive combat training in hand-to-hand techniques, marksmanship, and covert ops (he's a ninja!), the ability to cast illusions, as well as an external "nervous system" that looks like a UFO (from wikipedia.org).
He calls it E.V.A. (Waaaaalleeee...).
The packaging for Wave 2 of the Return of Marvel Legends line (or just ML 2012, whichever you want to use). is the same as for Wave 3, but it uses the less appealing art of Ed McGuinness. Now I kind of like McGuinness' artwork. It was a great basis for the Marvel Legends Red Hulk and Hulk from the Valkyrie 2-Pack, but it doesn't really wow in this medium. Maybe it's the inking or what, but I'm not impressed with any of the artwork in this series.
It's still great packaging though. A ton better than anything else they used to have in the line.
The body they've used this time comes from the old Jim Lee Wolverine, the one from the Forge 2-Pack where they're both in the blue and gold tights that Forge created as body armor during that guy's run. It's hard to recognize. I kept racking my brain trying to remember where I saw those straps on his legs before. It's a good body, though I remember Forge's being a bit better since he had the nicer shoulder articulation and the shoulder harness.
The body looks pretty good in black and white, too. The coat is Nick Fury's, and is the same on they used on Punisher. I imagine when we get another Gambit (come on, Hasbro! Gambit/Rogue 2-Pack already!), this will be the same one they use for him. I don't mind. It's a good coat. His head and hands look new.
There is of course, the Arnim Zola arm. It's part of the Build-A-Figure that comes with this series. I'm wanting to put one together, but I just don't have the moolah right now. That's another five figures, plus the two variants? Jeez. I've never even read a comic that had Arnim Zola in it, but I still want to build his figure.
It doesn't help that they've included a little paper insert featuring "Tales of Arnim Zola!". This one's got one about Beast of the X-Men seeking his help for some crazy experiment or something. I think it had to do with the Legacy virus. I wasn't paying attention in class, sorry.
His other accessories are his bad ass pistols. They are bad ass.
Articulation is great. The 2-Pack Wolverine's body is jointed like crazy with double-hinged knees and elbows, swivel-hinged ankles and hands, a great ab crunch, a waist, swivel-hinged neck, and good shoulder articulation. It's nice and functional, if not as elegant as some of the newer figures.
He does suffer from his tiny feet, though. If they'd made this figure today, I think they'd have sculpted bigger boots for him, just so it would be easier to stand the guy up. It also helps if you have those stands from the follow up wave of figures. They look retarded, but they're damned useful.
He's got a great looking belt and holster. Again, I'm not quite sure why they didn't just re-use Forge's body, which already comes with an X-belt, but then again, this one's very nice. It turns out that you're supposed to slot his pistols in with the handle facing front (or at least the fit better that way). I'm not sure if it's removable (I tried to find the clasp, but no luck ).
And pouches! X-Force flashback (Liefeld era, not the new one)!
You can have a lot of fun with the coat, since it comes off rather easily, but it does look rather weird since there are no sleeves on it. I suppose you could use one of the figures with sleeves, but as I've only got two, and both those come with black coats... well, you can if you want, that's my point.
I bought this guy after I bought X-Force Deadpool because I was thinking, "Hey, those new Marvel Legends figures of X-Force Archangel, Wolverine, and Psylocke are coming. Won't it suck if you don't have the whole team?"
Then I remembered that that 3-Pack was an SDCC Exclusive released earlier this year. Fuck.
Then I heard that those three figures are being released in the coming waves. Yay! Hopefully, I'll be able to save some moolah for those. Until then, I'll have to make do with the other figures I've gotten from past series.
Either way, It's not so bad. Fantomex is a pretty cool looking dude, silly powers or no.