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SH Figuarts Spider-Man : The definitive Spidey?

Spider-Man is arguably Marvel’s most popular character, and with great popularity comes great… merchandising? Over the years we have seen ridiculous amounts of Spidey-Merch hit shelves around the world, everything from bicycles to shampoo to breakfast cereal, and of course untold numbers of action figures! But which is the definitive Spider-Man figure currently to display as THE Spider-Man? Well if we are talking about Spidey in the MCU, the new SH Figuarts figure might be the one to beat!

Love him or hate him no Marvel collection is complete without a Spider-Man! Everyone has at least ONE wall crawler collecting dust on their toy shelves! Maybe its a classic 90s figure, maybe its a Tobey Maguire, there are tons to choose from, but if (like me) you are going for a full roster of MCU characters, you need a Tom Holland!
Hasbro gave us a Marvel Legends Tom Holland Spidey in the form of a 3pack with Cap and Iron Man last year when the Civil War movie came out… which I passed on. Wasn’t overly impressed and I knew better things would come along.
Fortunately I didn’t have to wait too long as the new(ish) Spider-Man Homecoming movie brought with it mucho 1/12 scale options!

When official promo images started popping up for Bandai’s SH Figuarts Spider-Man Homecoming Stark Suit Spider-Man (mouthful!) I knew I had to have it! I know many collectors are still trying to decide between the Figuarts and the Mafex version of this Spidey. The Mafex figure might have a bit of an edge as it comes with a Tom Holland head… but I have been team Figuarts since my first Kamen Rider many years ago and that was not going to change anytime soon!

The promo pics had me pre-ordering the moment the option became available! I was counting down the days! And then… a video review of the figure came up online 2weeks before my package arrived from Japan. Overall the figure looked great except for something I hadn’t notice based on the pics Bandai provided. I am of course referring to the odd floating belt thing he has going on. This bummed me out and brought my excitement down by 20%! “Well maybe it won’t be so awkward in hand” I told myself… shortly after, the box arrived.

The figure comes in your standard SH Figuarts type box.
Large image on front, window showing off most things, action pictures on the back.

On the inside we get a nice look at allllllll the wonderful accessories/extra bits and instructions on how to put them to use!
But I will get to the accessories later!

Sculpt & Articulation

Right away  you can’t help but notice the enormous amounts of detail in the sculpt! The entire suit is textured which might have been a wee bit overkill but looks great when you aren’t looking at it too closely. The paint is clean and accurate. The whole thing is solid, no stuck or loose joints, no blemishes.
Before this guy my last Figuarts was Ant-Man, which I reviewed exactly one year ago today! (wow) The sculpt and articulation was a big change from the super streamlined Sentai figures I have purchased beforehand. This figure shows off an even more evolved approach to articulation – unfortunately not all good.

The struggle between sculpt and articulation is something that will forever plague action figures.
The articulation in this figure is insane but it comes at a price. Just look at his butt! So many cuts! Sure he can do amazing things but is it worth having a weird thong butt?

Instead of trying to point out every joint I’m just going to share a bunch of poses I took pictures of. The articulation has evolved in such a way that its ball-joints on ball-joints on swivels on hinges. There is so much going on that it takes some fidgeting and adjusting to get things to work the way you want them to.
Actually makes me miss the simple articulation of Hasbro’s Legends…. just a bit.

Wow the colour came out a bit weird in these pics…
One joint he is missing though is a bicep-swivel. The movement can more or less be achieved playing with the shoulder but it does take some work. Just sayin’

The amount of articulation packed into this little guy is definitely impressive.  Even more impressive is how well he can balance! In hindsight I could have been more ambitious with my posing here but take my word for it when I say he can do just about anything!

The floating belt thing isn’t as bothersome as I expected it to be. Which makes me very happy. Yes you do have to mess with it sometimes to avoid showing any weird gaps but its really not all that bad, and the range of motion it allows makes it worthwhile.

I’m still not a huge fan of how the hip/crotch joints break up the sculpt but its becoming less of a problem the more I play around and pose the figure. Its not perfect but its some smart toy engineering that gets the job done.

If any figure needs extra amounts of articulation with sweet balancing skills that allow him to stand on one leg its Spider-Man. SH Figuarts gets it. SH Figuarts Delivered.

 

Accessories

Other than amazing articulation and sculpt SH Figuarts is known for giving a generous serving of extra hands, heads and accessories! Not so much the case with the Ant-Man from last year that I mentioned earlier but they totally came through for Ol’ Peter Parker here!

Hands! We get 7 matching pairs in total. Easy to switch them out. They seem a bit small to me but its not a big deal.
We get relaxed open palms, wide open palms, the ever important THWIPs, a surfs up hand? odd choice but whatever…Cellphone holding hands, a Web gripping hands, and a fists.

You can never have enough hands!  While the choices seem a bit strange they make for some fun play and thats what toys are really all about!
There are no web lines painted on said hands but the texture carries on from the suit. Not too shabby.

The “cellphone” he comes with isn’t anything special. Its really just a rectangle with a “screen”. Could have really benefited from some sort of sticker. Or at least some paint? Its very similar to the Walkman we got with the Marvel Legends StarLord which was just a hunk or orange plastic. Not impressive but still nice to get.

Other than the extra hands and tiny rectangle we get a total of 3 sets of eyes!
The eyes are changed by popping the head off the neck and using a little plastic pokey thing they included (AND I LOST!!) to push them out, a paperclip will do just fine.

You get a pair of Wide eyes, slightly less wide eyes, and squinty/focused eyes. Would have been nice to get Kill Mode eyes but… yea.

The nice thing about the eyes is that you can mix and match to add some personality and emotion to an otherwise expression-less mask. So glad they were able to add the squinting eyes into the MCU! So much better than having the mask come off in order to emote!

But wait theres more!
We also get a backpack!! Again a somewhat unnecessary add-on but hey why not!

The backpack is nicely sculpted and in a boring beige colour.. but whatever its a backpack!
It plugs into his back via a peg that goes into a hole in his back that is otherwise covered up by the red spider logo. Personally I think the peg system for the backpack is a bit much. I would have been happy with the straps alone and will maybe cut the peg off in the future in order to allow other figures to wear it haha sharing is caring!

For fun here is a comparison between the backpack that came with the  Amazing Spider-Man (Garfield) figure from Figma and the man purse that came with ML Star Lord.

Hrmm should have added MJ’s purse!

We also get 3 different web things!

 

We get 2 shooting webs that you attach at his wrist by popping his hand out, sliding in the web thing, and popping the hand back on to create a fun THWIPing effect.  Of course this only works with the TWHIP hand… otherwise it makes no sense.

Along with these THWIP webs we get a longer one that slides into his web-holding hands for some web-slinging action! They thought of everything!!
The webs are made of very soft, translucent plastic very similar to what you can achieve by messing with some hot glue. Personally I would have liked them to be a bit whiter or grey because they otherwise get a bit lost.
Much like that plastic eye pokey thing that I lost an hour into opening the box!!

‘THWIP’

And last but not least we get a little SH Figuarts stand-compatible peg that pops into Spidey’s back which allows you to port an SH Figuarts stand directly into his back without having to use the waist clip!

I really dig this little addition except that it doesn’t come with an actual stand… fortunately I have a bunch from previously purchased SH Figuarts figures. Yay me!
If you do not have any stands I strongly recommend buying some (eBay?) as it really adds to the fun factor!

♫Came in like a wrecking ball♪

Scale

Other than the great quality I have come to expect from SH Figuarts I opted for this figure over the Marvel Legends version because of the scale. This figure measures in at about 5.7″ which in a true 1/12 scale translate to a 5’7″ tall human. Tom Holland is currently 5’8″! (he might have been shorter during the movie. kids grow fast!) This works so much better than the ML figure which would suggest Holland is 6ft tall. Which is wrong!! Not a huge deal I know but it matters to me. Especially since this is the MCU version wherein he IS a teenage kid… so he needs to look it.

Now lets get some comparison pics! My favorite!

“Hi.”

Alright to start off here we have Spidey between the AOU MCU Captain America (a bit on the tall side) and the Netflix Daredevil (definitely too tall). Compared to these two big guys one of two things happens.. depending on how you want to look at it. Spidey looks like a child, or Cap is a very powerful looking man. I prefer to go with the latter haha

Here he is Compared to the current comic-based favorite “Pizza” Spidey and the teen-sized Ultimate Spider-Man!
The Figuarts is more or less the same height as the “Teen” Spidey body but with more realistic proportions. Which I would argue is jusssst right.

“Hey Tom can I borrow you phone? Hugo lost mine.”

Compared to Figma’s Amazing Spider-Man which I review back in 2014… man that Figma figure was weird.

“Sorry I’m not a teen with attitude, just responsibilities.”

And here he is between an SH Figuarts MMPR Red Ranger and the Ant-Man from last year.
Its cool to see how different they are yet they all came from the same place. The Power Ranger is a much sleeker, simpler design, whereas Ant-Man is… clunky. Personally I would have been perfectly happy if they went with a simpler articulation scheme like the Ranger but at the same time its nice to see the company evolving and changing. Not sure how I feel about that Ant-Man anymore…

The Verdict

I like this figure. I really do. He’s small and full of fun, fits perfectly into my MCU display and makes large villains look ridiculously huge in comparison. Good stuff. I would have liked some sort of web-wing accessory, some paint on the phone… and the belt thing still irks me a bit. But overall I love it and am glad to have it!

But is it THE definitive MCU Spider-Man? At the moment.. yes.
Much as I like him I am NOT giving him a full 5/5, but rather the first ever 4.75/5 for the reasons listed above and because I am annoyed that I lost that clear plastic eye pokey thing. Why did it have to be clear plastic?!

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