Friday, May 15, 2015

Review: S.H.Figuarts Iron Man Mk 42

Figure Information
Manufacturer: Bandai
Origin Series: Iron Man 3
Scale: Non-scale
Height: Approximately 15.5cm tall
Original Price: 6,264 Yen


Now, I don't have the Mk 6 Figuarts but I can definitely say that the box style, in an overall sense, was retained from the Iron Man 2 releases; having the movie title right above the Armor's name while having a standing product shot beside it while also having one of Tony's targeting mechanisms while inside the suit; the general idea of the package design was recycled from the predecessor armor releases in the line. There really aren't any significant points at the side aside from the design looking like it's actually a part of the Mk 42 armor itself. The back of the box is your typical product advertisement showing all the good(?) stuff you're in for!


Head-wise, I can definitely say that the Mk 42 armor has definitely improved quite a lot from the old S.H.Figuarts Mk 6 because the one looked very odd in terms of accuracy; the Mk 42 has definitely improved on the accuracy part and it does look pretty good down to the proportions, details and the paint!

There's definitely a good amount of detail you can find in that sea of gold, metallic yellow and metallic red paint; while some might feel the need to panel line those molded in lines all across the armor, I really feel that they are visible enough so that really isn't needed as far as my tastes go.

The rest of the armor is captured beautifully by Tamashii nations and every bit of the armor is extremely well detailed to the good extend; in addition to the already wonderful armor build, the joints themselves are not just mere joints as they themselves incorporate parts of the armor as well and that is the strongest point of this figure for me. The arc reactor also is well detailed instead of just being a decal or just a plain circle. The Mark 42's color scheme was, at the beginning, something I disliked but it just grew on me and the paint applications on the figure is wonderful.

As you might have noticed, it is indicated in the tamashii page that Mk 42 is only 15.5cm tall, thus, making him shorter when compared to my other armors like figma Mk 7 and revoltech Mk 5.

Now, while the Mk 42 is a really wonderful release, it does come with two MAJOR problems that I will be discussing next, first that I really noticed is that because prior to this review, I've already played around with Mk 42's articulation and thus, this really cost me some minor setback, while I'm still far from the articulation section, this figure has a great range and because of that, you have to be very careful of Mk 42's thigh armor, making use of the hip joints to it's full extent can indeed cause some major scratching on the thigh armor; I've encircled some parts on the image you'll see below, the one encircled in red are the potential scratch points while the one in blue is the one that causes the actual scratches on the armor, so yeah do be very careful with this.

Next up is because Mk 42 utilizes some metallic paint, this, of course, makes him vulnerable to paint fading that's pretty much applicable to any figure with metallic paint applications. Now, I guess, I'm one of the unlucky ones who got it early; I've asked around the S.H.Figuarts Philippines community and none of them has had the fading yet. But anyway, as you can see below, the back of the lower leg's metallic red already faded to what seems to be metallic pink, this doesn't bother me too much in terms of displaying the figure but it is indeed an eyesore for photography sessions.


Mark 42 comes with 4 thruster effets (2 for the feet and 2 for the hands) as well as 2 repulsor effects for his hands; the extra handsets come in pairs of open hands, chopping/flight hands and hands with pegs for the effect parts. 

The major bummer of Mk 42 is the fact that whenever you have to swap hands, you'll need to detach the hand guards and then attach them to the new hands, this process is such a bother and they really could've just made guards for each hands since the guards doesn't really sit in pretty well.

Bonus Accessory:

Mk 42 also came with a first release bonus which comes in the form of his couch or as the figure's official name "Tony's Sofa"! The very same sofa where the humanless armor was sitting at in the movie. The pillows are molded together but you can indeed adjust it's position in any way you want.

Articulation Points:

Going to Mk 42's head articulation, there is a very good range of it looking up and down; the head can indeed rotate in a full 360 but you'll have to angle the head up a little bit to do that and you can indeed tilt the head.

You can fully rotate the arms as well as raise sideways to a complete 90; you can also fully rotate the rest of the arms via bicep swivels and his arms do a complete bend via double jointed hinges on the elbows. Unfortunately, his wrist movement (though no picture) is crappy as hell as the hinge that's been pretty much present in a most figuarts isn't present on this one, so the wrist is pretty much limited only to the ball joint.

Mk 42 also has the ability to have his shoulder joint be slightly pulled for more range, a little something similar to SHF Honoka's. (or probably where the gimmick was inspired from since Mk 42 was released earlier)

Mk 42's torso articulation is really good too as you get a very decent bend forwards or backwards as well as decent tilts thanks to the ab joint. The ab section and the waist section can also be used as points to rotate the body.

And much like most of the old figuarts, there's that hinge on the hips that you can use to pull the leg down which allows you a better reach when making him kick forward, but DO NOTE, this is where the scratching mentioned in the details section occurs, so again, be VERY careful with it if you plan to get one.

The legs can also split sideways to somewhere close to a 90; I guess what's neat or odd is that his thigh joints actually use ball joints instead of your usual swivel, so you can wobble it a bit or just rotate it like your usual thigh joint. The knees are also double jointed but it barely surpasses a 90 though. Lastly, the ankles do allow you to rotate his feet, tilt it or tip or bend it via a combination of different points which does make up your typical awesome joint.


Mk 42's articulation is definitely very strong despite it coming with some detail setbacks, and you can indeed pull off a lot of poses with this figure and they look very natural in many ways. The repulsor blasts look awesome and tamashii nations certainly did a magnificent job at it since it does look sharper and better than what figma offered; they do offer Iron man some action poses although it's pretty much the same pose most of the time though again, the frame of the SHF Mk 42 does make it look a lot more natural compared to the other toy lines.

The thruster effects on the hands do feel stiff because of how the wrist joints were designed but still enough to pull off some good enough flight poses.

I do feel that the flight hands are quite wasted since they should've gotten pegs as well for the thruster parts since it does feel more proper if you put it that way.

Combining the two types of effect parts does give you great options and actually the ones that I really liked a lot out of the number of poses I did for this review.

Of course, there are still things you can do without the effect parts and that is definitely up to you if you want to make some brawling poses for Iron Man. (I know I don't) Of course, you can also make use of the sofa and make the armor sit down and look so naturally.

And since this IS Mk 42 and it starred on that movie that brought in quite a scene with the so-called "House Party Protocol" which had Tony's legion of armors kick some butt and get crushed in one battle with the big baddie; so as some attempt to do that, here's all of my 3 current armors altogether.

Final Thoughts:

Overall, the S.H.Figuarts is definitely a release worthy of praise despite having setbacks of its own, of all my 3 Iron Man armors as of this writing, the Mk 42 is definitely the most fun to handle and also the most natural in terms of articulation. A food for thought though is that Mk 42 is already turned into a new figure at this writing, which is Age of Ultron's Mk 43 armor, mine should arrive very soon so do wait for that one's review if you are on the fence about it. But if you liked the Mk 42 armor, then definitely, go get one if you can as this is really a piece of art. And before I end the review, S.H.Figuarts Iron Man Mk 42 is a figure I got from Onegai Onii-chan some time during the 4th Quarter last year!

I do give the "Prodigal Son" a classy 4 out of 5.