Never let it be said that patriotism doesn’t run deep in Marvel Comics. The USA has Captain America, England has Captain Britain and Russia has Red Guardian just to name a few.
As Russia’s answer to Captain America, it makes sense for Hasbro to bring him into the line at this point. He’s an easy repaint and he looks pretty great. This is one of those sneaky really well executed figures. Red Guardian won’t win figure of the year, but he’s a very strong addition to the Marvel Legends ranks.
Packaging: From the ‘if it’s not broke don’t fix it’ department. Hasbro keeps the package style that’s worked so well over the years here. I’d like to see Hasbro bump up the BAF font bigger on the top left portion and definitely do more with the bio. In this case, Hasbro’s typical two sentence bio summarizes Red Guardian up well enough, but I’d love for some more care put on that front. I’m still a big fan of the side portrait of the package and ease of detecting any tampering.
Likeness: Red Guardian doesn’t have the most complex outfit, but it’s simplicity helps him stand out. The figure has a similar classic style that speaks to my old school sensibility. The flared gloves look great, but I’m not as fond of the slanted boot cuff execution.
I really like the stern expression. It’s stern without looking mean and villainous like the recent Captain America figure.
Super nerd alert: Red Guardian typically wears a belt with a circle in the center not the trademark buckle style. Clearly this is for ease of figure re-use. If the belt buckle is good enough for Cap, apparently it’s good enough for Red Guardian.
Scale: Red Guardian uses the same Grim Reaper buck as Captain America. That’s fitting since they’re essentially counterparts of each other. That makes him taller than the average character, but not giant sized. Red Guardian should have a somewhat imposing presence and this body works great in that regard.
Paint: Hasbro has done some great work on their paint jobs as of late. Red Guardian however seemed to miss that memo. This wasn’t the biggest surprise considering the paint issues stem from the white painted areas. Hasbro struggles the most on that front and Red Guardian has a number of sloppy paint and weak white paint applications.
The chest area actually has a neat darker shade of red. I really like that effect. My only issue is I wish it was throughout the figure and not that one area as it makes it appear accidental.
Articulation: I like the Grim Reaper mold as it allows for some great poses. There’s not a whole lot of poses I could come up with that I couldn’t achieve with Red Guardian. That says a lot for the superior articulation mechanism of Marvel Legends in general.
- ball-jointed shoulders
- wrist hinge
- knee (double-jointed)
Accessories: Fitting for a patriot, Red Guardian comes with a shield. This might be one of my favorite accessories this year strictly from the paint job. Hasbro used this pearlescent dark red and it looks fantastic. The star is perfectly centered and is equally sharp.
Additionally, he comes with the right leg for the Build-A-Figure Giant Man from Captain America: Civil War.
Worth it? Right now you can get Red Guardian for $12. Anytime you can get a Marvel Legends figure in 2016 for less than $15 you’re winning at collecting. These are the best 6” figures on the market and you’re getting a ton of quality even paying the regular $20 price.
Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Where to get it? Red Guardian tends to be one of the figures that hangs around the pegs longer than others from this wave. I’ve seen him at Toys R Us and Wal-Mart on numerous occasions. But the best bet is grabbing him from Amazon with its $12 price tag.