CAPTAIN AMERICA – Desert Battle
Hey gang. Sorry I haven’t posted anything for a few days. I’ve been hard at work on my screenplay the past couple of weeks and when I get in the groove I hate to stop to review a toy. The main reason I started this blog initially was because I was trying to force myself to work on my screenplay on a daily basis. It got to be to demanding a schedule to maintain and so I would find myself taking days off. If I stop writing for one day it’s that much easier to not write for two, then three then four days. Before I knew it weeks would go by without me writing a word. This blog was a way to keep me writing daily, even if it was only for a short toy review. For the most part it worked. On average I’ve posted more than once a day since I started this blog in December and I’ve made some headway on a few screenplays. I actually sat down at my computer just now to continue working on my screenplay when I realized I hadn’t posted on here in a few days and I figured I should throw something up. I have grown attached to this blog and it has become part of my regular routine and I’d hate to see readership drop off due to neglect on my part.
Conveniently some new figures arrived in the mail today so I’ll review one of them. This here is Desert Battle Captain America. He was to be released in the fourth wave of figures based on the Captain America movie of 2011. The unfortunate thing about toy lines based on summer movies is that they have a very short shelf life. Retailers order a ton of wave 1 and 2 prior to the movies release and they sell a bunch of it. However they usually order too much and the less desirable characters from those early waves sit there peg warming for months. Thus retailers don’t order future waves because they don’t have room for it. This has been an issue on all of the recent Marvel movies and a real pain in the ass to collectors waiting to buy figures from later waves. I usually end up turning to ebay if I don’t stumble across them at Winners, a dumping ground for American retailers. This was an ebay purchase but not one I went looking for. I was actually looking for a Hawkeye from the Avengers movie line. All my local stores are flooded with Captain America, Iron Man and Thor toys (all characters I’ve had plenty of opportunities to buy thanks to their solo films) and no one is stocking Hawkeye, Black Widow or the Skrull. My buddy Andrew scored a Widow for me on his recent trip to the States but for Hawkeye I had to turn to ebay. I found one loose at a decent price though he was missing his bow. I try to bundle ebay purchases whenever I can to save on shipping so I perused the sellers other sale items hoping to find a travel buddy for Mr. Barton. I found a G.I. Joe I needed so I was all set. This khaki colored Captain America though made me pause before paying for my order. I liked him. I didn’t want to like him but I found him visually appealing. I try to avoid gimmick figures like “Snowsuit Batman” or “Scuba-dive Spider-Man” because the characters have never worn those silly outfits and it’s just a cheap cash grab for the toy companies. I have never seen Captain America wear a desert uniform in all of the hundreds of Captain America comics I’ve read. He doesn’t wear green in the jungle because the point is for him to be a symbol for the newsreels and to draw fire from the regular soldiers so why would he wear a khaki colored uniform in the desert? He wouldn’t.
But I still found him appealing. This wasn’t some silly scuba gear, this looked like a real world outfit. All the wars I’ve grown up watching have taken place in the desert and the soldiers I see on CNN are wearing appropriate desert colors. I’ve never been a big fan of WWII movies or Vietnam movies. Some of my favorite war flicks are contemporary films like Three Kings and The Hurt Locker. I think if Captain America existed in the real world he probably would be wearing an outfit something like this over in the middle east right now. In a weird way I find this version of Cap more inspiring than the typical Red, White and Blue one because it reminds me more of wartime. Plus I’m Canadian so the Blue was always one color too many for me anyway.
So I bought him. He was pretty cheap and I’ll likely never find him around here. He had his pistol with him but the seller did not provide me with his helmet or shield. normally a shield is a must-have for Cap but this version came with a big clunky one with spinning blades so I never would have displayed it anyway. The helmet would’ve been nice but he looks fine without it. I actually posed him next to a couple of desert themed Joes for this review and when I did I realized that Duke’s helmet fits him quite well and with the attached night vision goggles gives him an even more real world feel.
The figure itself is actually just a tan repaint of the main Captain America released in wave 2 of the movie line. I really like the movie look. I thought the mask looked kinda goofy on screen but it looks fine on the action figure. I like how functional everything looks, such as the red stripes on his abs being straps for his gear instead of just decorative stripes like in the comics. The chin strap on the mask and the wings painted on the sides of it are also nice departures from the comic version. As much as I liked the look I passed on buying this figure in the original color scheme because I felt that I already had enough Captain America figures (a couple standard comic versions, Bucky Cap, WWII Cap, Steve Rogers, and USAgent). I’m glad I passed on it now as it makes this one seem that much more unique in my collection. I wouldn’t want this to be my only Captain America figure but it is an excellent re-paint. 7 out of 10.