I had to think how I wanted to start this review, so I’ll start with what happened to me the other night. Some friends and I were watching TV when a Thor: The Dark World commercial came on. When they quickly flashed on the Heimdall character I paused the TV and told everyone to check out Idris. No one believed it was him. They asked me why would Idris be in Thor? Isn’t that a “white” movie?
Now here I am, a little annoyed, not because they instantly put Thor in the “whites-only” category, but because at least one of them is a serious movie buff and even if she didn’t see the movie I thought she would have known about Idris and the first Thor movie “controversy”. Yes, there were some small-minded people who thought that Idris Elba should not have played Heimdall because in the comic book, Heimdall is White. Well, so is Nick Fury and Sam Jackson played him. And the late Michael Clarke Duncan played the Kingpin in Daredevil. So it is not unheard of that a prominent Black actor takes on a historically White role. And Idris did an excellent job the first time around and I can’t wait to see the next movie.
With all that being said, I also have to add that this was not an easy figure to come by. 2011’s Thor movie action figures did not sell well due to bad assortment and terrible distribution. The first wave consisted of like four different Thor’s. Here’s some news Hasbro. People generally only need one good Thor figure. The Thor figures clogged the pegs so much in stores that the last wave of regular figures saw a limited release in the US and the last wave of deluxe figures which Heimdall was part of was cancelled in the US altogether. The majority of them were dumped in other countries like Canada and some ended up in second-hand stores like Tuesday Morning or TJ Maxx here in the US. What to do when this happens? Unfortunately a lot of Americans who wanted this figure turned to eBay.
When I first received the figure, the first Thor movie was pretty much out of people’s minds so I waited to review this figure when the next Thor came out. Well, it’s out now and Idris Elba returns as Heimdall so after all of that backstory, let’s get into the review…
The Heimdall figure is part of the Thor Deluxe series of figures so which means two things: A) The packaging is bigger because B) you’ll be getting a whole bunch of crap accessories that will be going in the crap accessories box.
The front of the packaging is pretty good, and generally Hasbro does a decent job on the artwork and deco styling of the package overall. Heimdall is prominently displayed in the blister. The package is multilingual which is nice since it seemed to show up in every country except the US. One thing I noticed that I hadn’t before is that the movie title seems to be “Thor: The Mighty Avenger”. I know that the official title for the Captain America movie was “Captain America: The First Avenger”. Wouldn’t that have been annoying if they had stuck with that theme? Thank God I didn’t notice it before…
The back of the packaging is equally as nice. Coming off of my last review, they could have put a picture of a sloth on the back and it would have been more exciting than what I experienced so seeing this nice usage of his useless (to me) accessory is a nice change of pace. We also get a glimpse of the other deluxe figures in this line, one of which also did not show up in the US at major retail (one of the Thor’s). Overall some nice packaging for Mint in Package collectors to display, but I’m not one of those and once it’s open, that’s all she wrote so let’s score this one and move on…
Packaging Score: 7.75 out of 10
Heimdall comes with one really nice accessory, his sword, and as I previously mentioned, a whole bunch of junk
Now the sword itself is pretty impressive. Instead of using some generic sword already in their repertoire, Hasbro has molded a new sword specifically to be used as the Sword of Heimdall. It looks great and fits pretty good in the figure’s hand.
I’m not sure if there is anything else you can associate with this character. The 5 minutes that he was in the first film really does not give us a lot to work with. What would be nice? Probably a rainbow bridge wormhole playset that he plays guardian to. That will never come so this is what we have. Man I miss the 80s…they put out everything you could ever want in an accessory or playset. I blame the internet. And videogames.
Accessories Score: 7.5 out of 10
Before I started to do this review, I though that this was at least a pretty good likeness. I mean 75% of his face is covered by his helmet, so you really only have to work on that 25%. Could he be Idris Elba? Sure, but then again, he could be Morris Chestnut or Common too.
That was all before I noticed a fatal flaw to this figure during this review…the figure is cross-eyed. Yes, my rare figure that showed up in droves in the country up north came to me with the eyes drawn like he was Dee-Bo from Friday. I’ve had googly-eyed figures before but usually it can be passes off. Not this one. But oh well…it will only affect the score a little bit.
The rest of the figure is done well and is quite detailed. From what I remember of the first few figures from this film, they were kind of mediocre. In fact, I remember not even picking up an actual Thor figure from this line until they hit discount status later on. Which is kind of ironic because I can still find Thor figures from this line that was put out almost 3 years ago in stores today and at full price. But I digress.
Painting on this figure wasn’t all that hot. I’ve already mentioned the eyes. But there are other little splotches of paint here and there which make me think they rushed this into production. Nothing really that would make me hate this figure but noticeable enough to mention.
The last thing I would like to mention is that I believe his right hand is deformed. It almost seems like his right hand was forced open and will now never be able to hold the sword or really do anything it was meant to do correctly.
Sculpt/Likeness Score: 7.5 out of10
This figures articulation leaves a lot to be desired. Missing from the articulation set of other Hasbro figures includes bicep swivel, wrist swivel, waist swivel, and even ankle swivel (just to name a few). As a result, this figure only has about 13 points of articulation. Even if the character is known as the Sentinel Guardian of the Asgardians, I expect we would be able to pose him a little bit better.
Even though his neck is on a ball joint, his whole helmet setup prevents him from looking up or down (just left and right). He’s even sculpted in such a way that it looks like more articulation could have been added – looking at his abdominal area on his armor and the ankles as well – but Hasbro just cheaped out this last wave (much like they did in the Avengers toy line with this figure). I wish he had some more arm articulation so that he could at least hold his two-handed sword with both hands.
I don’t understand why Hasbro’s last ditch effort to save production costs is to remove articulation. We’re in the 21st century…I’ve seen dollar store figures more articulation than their recent set of crap. This is not as bad as their 5 points of articulation crap figures, but it is on that downward spiral to being that bad.
Articulation Score: 6 out of 10
There is a plus side to all of this…this is I believe Idris Elba’s first action figure! He’s in the ranks of Samuel L. Jackson now! He’s played in several action films now – Prometheus, Pacific Rim, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance – all of which he has more prominent roles but it is the movie that he has had the least presence in that has produce an action figure. Here’s hoping that we at least get a Hot Toy action figure from this new movie.
Now if we could only get a Stringer Bell action figure….