This is a set I’ve been meaning to get to for years now. But finally, I’m getting around to reviewing the Marvel Legends Avengers Initiative set of Agent Coulson, Nick Fury and Maria Hill. While this is more of an Agents of Shield set, tying things in to Avengers was clearly the way to go here.
Packaging: Hasbro does pretty solid work on the ML three packs. This black and silver color scheme works nice enough. The presentation of the figures is nice and I like the portraits on the side. The bios on the back are weaker than normal despite the four languages making it look like there’s a decent write up.
Likeness: This is a Marvel Cinematic Universe set so the likenesses are more important than normal. At this scale, these are some very well done likenesses.
I can easily spot Clark Gregg in the Agent Coulson sculpt. I love the subtle smirk, which fits his character. His suited body has the right amount of width so he doesn’t look like he’s part of a different line than the more heroic figures.
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Nick Fury sports a great six-inch scaled Samuel L. Jackson head sculpt. The reused Punisher/Red Skull body is dated by this point, but is the most appropriate use of existing parts. The popped collar leather jacket fits MCU Fury better than Punisher and Red Skull at least.
Hill has a determined if slightly too pinched Cobie Smulders head sculpt. She reuses the heavily coveted MCU Black Widow body. That buck had some standing issues, but this is another sensible and easy repaint since Widow still rocked her SHIELD uniform. Hill has one open hand so she can’t clutch both guns — the better to share with Fury — but I like the option to punch out some Hydra agents if she needs to bust some heads.
Scale: No problems on the scale front. The Black Widow body keeps Hill shorter than Smulders is to Scarlett Johansson, but that’s not a big issue. Coulson and Fury are appropriately scaled and will fit in great with the MCU figures.
Paint: This set was pretty minimal on the paint requirements. Coulson has a SHIELD colors tie and a decent receding hairline. There’s something just a fraction off with the eye paint that’s noticeable when you start paying attention to it.
Fury has the least amount of paint apps with minor silver accents for the straps and belt buckles. His one good eye is painted straight on properly, which was appreciated.
Hill gets the most extensive paintwork with Black Widow’s outfit getting a more SHIELD appropriate blue tone. The detail work with the zipper and black buckles was sharp. Hill’s Bluetooth could have been lined up a bit better, but that’s my only gripe.
Articulation: Coulson has the traditional articulation setup making for the usual movement.
Fury is very restricted thanks to the outdated hip joints and torso. They are pretty awful to work with and Fury’s movement works far worse than it appears. The soft plastic used for his ankles doesn’t do him a lot of favors either.
Hill has fluid articulation as the Black Widow body marked the first big advancement for female ML movement. The heels screw over lengthy holds of poses however and she’ll topple over at the worst possible times.
The figures have:
- ball-jointed shoulders
- bicep (besides Hill)
- wrist hinge
- waist (besides Fury)
- knee (double jointed)
Accessories: Depending on how you allocate them, everyone has at least one accessory.
Coulson wins in this category. He comes with an alternate sunglasses wearing headsculpt. The expression is less inviting with a more stern look. With the eye paint being just a little off, I’m probably going to display him with this one. Additionally, he comes with the big gun he used to blast Loki.
There’s two pistols to be divvied up with Fury and Hill. I would have liked for a better arsenal or at least the bazooka Fury uses to take down the first fighter jet. He can fit one of the pistols in his holster.
Fury will have a problem holding the pistols thanks to his larger open hand sculpt. No problem for Hill though.
Worth it? I didn’t get this set when it originally retailed for $50. For three Marvel Legends figures that was a fair price. I grabbed it when it reached the $40 mark, which is essentially getting a free figure tossed in. Weirdly now, you’d end up spending closer to $80 for the set.
Rating: 6 out of 10
Coulson is the real winner of the set. Hill is solid besides the awkward heels. Fury is largely overall disappointing besides the head sculpt. He needs a better body all around.
Where to get it? Toys R Us has long since sold out of the Avengers Initiative exclusive online. Maybe you could find it in some stores with a larger inventory. The best bets now would be Amazon or eBay.