Last Friday my first San Diego Comic-Con exclusive arrived in the mail. That was the Transformers/G.I. Joe hybrid Shockwave HISS tank. Since I can’t afford to go to San Diego myself I am forced to pay top dollar for these Con exclusives on ebay. It sucks but there really isn’t any other way to get ahold of these toys. When my HISS tank arrived I absolutely loved it and felt it was worth even the inflated price I paid for it. Well on Monday my second SDCC shipment arrived and unfortunately it did not meet my high expectations. This Baron Zemo was one of three figures included in the Marvel Universe SDCC exclusive Masters of Evil box set . Zemo is the leader of the Masters of Evil. Also included were two of his lackeys Tiger Shark and Radioactive Man. The Masters of Evil are a team of super villains who usually band together to do battle with the Avengers. The team has been lead by a variety of villains over the years(The original MOE was led by Baron’s father) and dozens and dozens are criminals have joined the roster at one point or another. The 3 characters included in this set have never actually served on the team at the same time before so it seems like an odd choice when considering all of the possible character options Hasbro had to pick from.
And yet I actually quite like the character choices. I’ve always thought Tiger Shark was cool and I’ve developed a fondness for Radioactive Man over the past few years after he became a good guy and played a starring role in one of the monthly books I collect, the Thunderbolts.
Baron Helmut Zemo was the real draw to this set for me though. I always loved the look of the character. Somehow he makes a purple suit with a pink mask, yellow gloves and boots with fur trim “work”. He’s never been a typical rob-a-bank type of villain like many of the other MOE alumni. Baron Zemo is more of a Doctor Doom world conquerer type of villain. Zemo’s father, Baron Heinrich Zemo was a full on Nazi who was killed in battle against Captain America. This Zemo isn’t necessarily a Nazi but he’s a nasty German with a thirst for power and a mission of revenge so I wouldn’t mess with him.
In recent years Zemo’s become an anti-hero of sorts. He starred in Thunderbolts for years where we fans got to see a side of the character that we’d never seen before. It was this book that really made the character more interesting to me as he no longer seemed like such a stereotype. I’ve never owned a figure of the character before and was pretty stoked when I found out one would be available at the SDCC.
So my overpriced set arrived on Monday and I was immediately disappointed. The figures all look pretty cool but they feel cheap. Zemo’s arm fell off as soon as I took him out of the package. Not a good sign. It snapped back on easily enough but all of his joints are rather loose. His articulation is awkward making it very hard to pose him in a normal standing position. His pink chest piece, belt and boot fur are all separate pieces of plastic which can easily slide around and fall out of place. When he’s posed on a shelf you don’t notice it but as soon as you start trying to pose him the sliding parts get annoying. The other figures suffer from loose joints and wonky articulation as well.
Another issue I have is with the accessories. The set included a sword and a pistol both intended for Baron Zemo. Unfortunately his hands are sculpted open and his grip is way too wide to hold either of them. I’d like to display him with his sword but unless I use tape or glue or something it just won’t stay in place. The highlights of this figure are his head sculpt and color scheme. The newly tooled head looks great with sculpted grooves and a dark purple paint wash over the pink base. The silver eyes really stand out as well and manage to convey emotion even though the rest of the face is covered. Zemo looks appropriately evil. He would get a lower score if he weren’t such a cool character. 6 out of 10.