Super-Articulate: Marvel Legends Professor X
Every once in a while, there’s a consistent, ongoing call for a figure to get made. Since the beginning of Marvel Legends, one of the most relentlessly demanded figures has been Professor X in his hover chair. A Professor X in his conventional wheelchair was produced in 2005 as part of the Galactus wave, back when the line was made by Toy Biz. A movie version in the film chair was also produced early in the decade. In the 1990s toyline based largely on the animated series, we saw the only American mass market version of the Professor in the hover chair. But no longer! The brand-new Ultimate Riders Professor X in his hover chair is here. I could do this review in one word, and that is: DAMN.
Hasbro knocked this out of the park. I know I’ve been high on their work lately, but that’s because they’ve been delivering consistently. This particular item is a step above that. The accessories are clever (one is outright brilliant), the chair design is detailed and extremely well-made, and the figure is solid. It’s high-caliber work.
First off, check out the box. The hover chair is in two pieces; it easily and cleanly fits together. Yes, there’s a seam on the back, but if that’s your biggest gripe, it’s really minimal. The “hover stand” (of, what? Compressed air? Energy? Doesn’t matter) gives the chair an elevated feel. The chair pads fit in easily and sport some crazy detail for pieces that you don’t see much of with the figure in place. The “blanket” helps keep the figure in place. There’s the Cerebro helmet with a power effect, and finally, there’s the Shadow King head.
I’ve praised these before, but I’ll do it again: creating extra accessories and swappable body parts for value-adds that create “new” characters is a brilliant idea. The Shadow King head goes perfectly with the BAF Kingpin, and I’m keeping it there. (I have an early Kingpin. It’s fine. Head stays. In fact, a major driver of my interest in the Kingpin BAF was the fact that I’d be able to make him into the Shadow King; if you’re not familiar with the character, look him up and watch Legion).
The hover chair itself is well-made, with a pair of sliding panels revealing instruments underneath. It’s super-easy to slide the figure in; you more or less “lock” him in place (though its not a true locking mechanism) with the blanket. The chair is big, but not disruptively big on the shelf.
The figure itself has a standard ML suit body, but they killed it on the head and hands. Those crazy eyebrows look like the early Kirby take on the character, and hand gesture positions are perfect. I photographed the figure with the helmet and without. I’m going to display without, but I think it looks decent; the effect isn’t as good as Psylocke’s psionic butterfly, but it’s decent.
Professor X looks great on his own, but he really comes to life when you put some of his X-Men around him. Here he is with the recent Cyclops, Jean Grey, my favorite of the Wolverines (because he’s short) and that dick Hank McCoy (what? I’m a big Cyclops fan, and he owes Scott a big apology). Since I have a new Charlie to put with my modern X-Men, I moved the old Chuck up to what I call my “First Appearance” shelf.
Overall, this is terrific work. The figure is available now. It reads “sold out” on Hasbro Pulse, but it’s popping in and out on Amazon (I got mine there for regular price; just be patient) and also showing up at Target and Wal-Mart, along with the Deadpool/Scooter box. GameStop lists them as arriving by the weekend, but your location’s stock may vary.