This here is the X-Men’s Kitty Pryde. That’s what the package read and that’s what they usually call her in the comic books these days. Kitty has always been the character’s “real name” but I prefer her super hero code name, Shadow Cat. I like the name Kitty Pryde, it’s unique enough that it could be a code name all on its own but I’m partial to calling her Shadow Cat because that’s what she went by when I first discovered the character. When my brother Doug and I got into collecting comics I was drawn to Spider-Man while Doug veered towards the X books. The first issue of X-Men he bought, issue 210, featured Kitty and the rest of the team looking totally badass and it remains one of my all-time favorite comic covers. It was drawn by one of my favorite funny book artists, John Romita Jr., though at the time he was still developing his unique style which I came to appreciate even more over the years. This issue was the lead in to the “mutant massacre”, a story line which holds tons of nostalgic value to me. During the story Shadow Cat was impaled by one of Harpoon’s electrified harpoons and the result was that it left her permanently trapped in her “phase mode”. Shadow Cat’s mutant power is that she can become intangible, basically turn into a ghost, allowing her to phase through walls and anything else that might be in her way.
Kitty was introduced into the X-Men book in the early 80s as a peppy thirteen year old as a means to inject some freshness into the team. I never really saw her as a kid because by the time Doug and I had started reading the books she had been through the ringer a couple of times and was a much tougher character. Shadow Cat was actually my favorite X-Man in those early years of buying comics. Her costume at the time consisted of blue spandex leggings, a loose fitting blue jacket, a domino mask, and big curly 80s hair. It may not have been the best look but it’s the one I always associate as her “main” costume.
The get up that’s she’s wearing in this figure is the standard X-Men duds that the original team wore back in the 60s and has been worn by the New Mutants and several other X characters since. It serves as a generic outfit for young mutant recruits and, while I don’t mind it, I feel that Kitty deserves her own unique costume. I wish they had went with the silly blue 80s design for this figure. Oh well.
I’m practically a completist when it comes to the Marvel Universe line but Kitty was one of the few figures that I refused to buy when she came out. I found the standard X-Men outfit too dull and I haven’t been attached to the character in decades. I know she died a while back but I’m pretty sure she was resurrected..I dunno. Go buy a comic if you want to know what her current status is.
I finally picked up this figure when I found her loose for $2 at that comic shop in Moncton I talked about in my Viper Commando review. I still think that the figure is dull, but the face sculpt is actually pretty darn good. On the plus side of her wearing this costume is that she blends in quite well with some of my other X-Men figures. This figure is not as bad as I initially thought it was. 5 out of 10.
As a side note, Kitty was portrayed by Ellen Page in X-Men 3 and she will be reprising the role in the upcoming X-Men: Days of Future Past. I thought Ellen did a great job on the character with the small amount of screen time that she had. I imagine she’ll have a much larger role in the new film considering the character’s pivotal role in the original comic story and how much bigger a star Ellen has become since X-Men 3. Ellen is from my home town of Halifax and actually grew up just a few streets over from where I live now. I don’t know her personally but she goes to the same comic shop as me when she’s in town and I’ve seen her around the neighborhood a couple of times which is pretty cool.