It’s kinda wild how long it’s taken for Hasbro to release a classic Doctor Strange figure. I thought his newfound mainstream popularity thanks to his presence in the MCU would have bumped him up on the priority ranks.
Now it finally looks like I can retire my Toy Biz Series 9 Doctor Strange, who’s held it down as my shelf’s default Sorcerer Supreme for nearly two decades now. The ML9 Strange came out back in 2005.
It’s certainly not like Hasbro hasn’t had numerous opportunities, but the more modern red and black attire kept getting the nod instead.
I ordered this figure from Walmart way back in October so it’s nice to see it arrive before the new movie. Let’s see if this figure is magical or has nothing up its sleeve.
Packaging: Despite the Walmart exclusive nature, this the standard Marvel Legends packaging albeit with the Doctor Strange logo and symbol at the top. The package is full of accessories so it’s not a barebones figure even without a Build-A-Figure.
The side artwork features art from one of my favorite Doctor Strange artists in Kevin Nowlan. He brings a true mythical, mysterious take on Strange so it’s nice to see his artwork featured.
Strange’s bio is serviceable covering his origin and purpose. With five languages it’s hard to include much useful information.
Likeness: In a nice change of direction, Hasbro has been having Paul Harding design the head sculpts for some of the prominent figures lately. His work has been on display on the Marvel Legends 20th anniversary Captain America, Iron Man and Hulk figures.
Harding has been showing some digital sculpt work he’s done of major Marvel characters with more of a 70s vibe and that is definitely true with Strange.
If there’s a period in time where Strange works best it’s definitely the 70s and everything from the lush coiffed hair, prominent sideburns to the long mustache and arched eyebrows reflects the 70s vibe.
Harding’s contributions stop with the head sculpt, but it gets Strange to a great start. His cape is a reuse from the comic Doctor Strange figure from the BAF Dormammu wave. It flares up around the shoulders to theoretically allow for better posing.
There’s something I still like about the ML9 cape with its layered detail and how it envelops Strange, but this version definitely shows off the figure better. And it’s more comic accurate. The Eye of Agamotto is very well done even if the sculpt has it open with the eye visible.
I really like the sash knot and how the strands flow to the side. Ditto for the way his sleeves drape with multiple folds to show they’re a little baggy. Strange wasn’t a frail guy and this overall sculpt gives him a nice amount of size. I also love the spellcasting hands Strange has as they’re perfectly suited for him.
Paint: Strange’s paint work is mostly solid though I’ve got a few issues. The first is that Strange’s gloves and sash are traditionally orange yellow or just orange in the comics, not yellow.
Only his cape has a yellow trim and the figure is missing the black lining details. They are sculpted into the cape so if you’ve got a steady hand and a fine point marker, you can add that detailing yourself.
As usual, yellow doesn’t play well with other colors and there’s some sloppiness and a little bit of the red bleeding through. Some of the gold from the Eye of Agamotto also spilled over onto the yellow as well.
Strange’s gloves do have the required speckles although this was inconsistent from various eras. I’m glad Hasbro included them. I would have liked for the Vishanti symbol in the front of his tunic to be an even lighter shade of blue. It definitely is lighter just not as prominent as it probably should be as in some cases it’s closer to white than light blue.
I was going to complain about the grey temples, but just from comics in the 70s and 80s they’re very inconsistent. Some colorists did them like stripes on either side of his head while others just had them start just above his ears all the way down. It’s so all over the place that there’s no definitive take on them so they’re fine.
Those are the problems with the figure yet for all that breakdown they’re not deal breakers. The head sculpt is painted very well and the shade of blue for the tunic really pops.
Scale: Doctor Strange is typically portrayed the same height as his Defenders teammate Namor and that’s the case here as well.
He is a bit shorter than the slightly taller 80th Anniversary Captain America, Thor or Iron Man.
- Marvel Legends Retro Tigra figure review
- The Batman review
- Catwoman: Hunted review
- Superman and Lois – The Inverse Method review S2 E4
Articulation: Strange’s arching cape isn’t as helpful as the 80th Anniversary Thor figure. It still restricts some movement like the arms above the head conjuring pose.
My figure seemed to have somewhat weaker knees. This will likely get worse over time as the cape puts more strain on them. Hasbro cut one slit in Strange’s skirt on the left side. That allows for deeper stances facing the left side. I’m puzzled why they didn’t do the same with the right side. I suppose that’s what scissors are for…
Still, for a magician I can get a respectable amount of conjuring poses for him.
Doctor Strange has:
- ball-jointed shoulders
- wrist hinge
- knee (double-jointed)
Accessories: Doctor Strange has a wide array of accessories. It’s enough to compensate for the lack of a Build-A-Figure piece in this instance.
He’s got a left fist and a right gripping hand. Strange also gets the energy effect we’re used to seeing for many figures. The coloring of the effect looks great with orange, yellow and reds.
Strange also gets an alternate focused summoning head sculpt. It’s well done and a smart secondary option, but the lack of consistency is weird.
The hair is different with strands coming over his face. This sculpt’s hair is painted with the gray temples from the sides down.
He also has another head sculpt for Strange’s brief stint when his book’s sales were bad and Marvel decided a mask and gloves would help pique interest.
This is a cool inclusion and a smart reuse of the Vance Astro head sculpt. To really get the look down, Hasbro needed to throw in a separate set of gloves and boots.
Strange also has the Wand of Watoomb. The detail work on the wand is really sharp from the crosshatch pattern and the work on the devil heads is impressive.
Hasbro also added a wash to highlight all those details.
Finally, Strange comes with the Axe of Angarruumus. It’s got stellar detail and also has a wash.
This is more of a modern Doctor Strange accessory, but it’s nice to get a new weapon in the arsenal.
Worth it? Strange was priced at premium exclusive test the waters for even higher prices at $26.49. That definitely feels like Hasbro and Walmart seeing just how flexible the collector market is for in-demand figures.
Especially one that should have been out at the $19.99 price. Even at $22.99 Strange wouldn’t have been a bad deal, but it’s hard to justify this extra cost even with the accessories.
Assuming you couldn’t find him in stores and didn’t feel like meeting the shipping threshold, Strange costs $34. This definitely means some other waves will be purchased at discount prices to offset this one.
Rating: 9.3 out of 10
The cost makes some of the flaws like the heads not matching, the missing paint on the cape lining and the cape/arm restrictions less forgivable. It’s still a very good figure, but Hasbro is pushing the limit at this price point.
Where to get it? Doctor Strange is a Walmart exclusive, which hopefully means he’ll show up in stores.
On the website, he’s now available for the regular price.