The ultra-cool rotocast Extreme Hellboy wasn't the only Mignola-inspired exclusive that Mezco offered this year: they also added a new figure to their 7" action figure line. No, it sadly wasn't the Liz Sherman figure that fans have been calling for since the initial lineup was announced; instead, it was yet another Hellboy figure.
In Series 1, we got three "official" Hellboys, plus many more variants. Too many to list here. So with (potentially) nine versions of Hellboy already floating around, it made sense to release more. He's like the Wolverine of indie comics! Fortunately, the exclusive does have some worthwhile, demonstrable differences between it and what has come before.
At a glance, this figure looks like a reissue of Trenchcoat Hellboy - he's got the brown leather jacket, the grim look on his face and the corpse on his shoulder. But this figure does indeed offer the "extended features" promised by his name.
To begin with, his coat is now removable. While the original did a nice job of using thin plastic to suggest fabric, this one actually gives us a vinyl/pleather coat. Like Extreme Hellboy, the coat buckles over his right arm - I was expecting a velcro closure with faux hardware above, but Mezco really gave us working metal buckles and leather straps. They can be a bit hard to work, but you can't argue with that level of detail.
Since the coat is flexible, that finally allowed for a better right elbow - the regular figure only had a peg joint there, so he couldn't actually bend his arm. Extended Features Hellboy, like the coatless version, moves at the neck, shoulders, torso, waist, elbows, wrists, hips, thighs, knees and ankles and has three joints in that long red tail of his.
The range of motion in the Right Hand of Doom is not as great as it was in the earlier versions - it doesn't twist at the elbow, and the wrist isn't a balljoint. There is a good reason for that, though: the hand, instead of being regular plastic, is cast from polystone, the sturdy stuff that Sideshow/Weta makes all their busts out of now. It shares the same sculpt as the normal versions, but it has a bit more heft to it and seems more like a real stone hand. Would it have been better if the wrist was more mobile? Sure, but the peg joint isn't a disappointment, either.
Extended Features Hellboy comes with two accessories: the same corpse as the regular version and his Samaritan gun. The gun is one of the changes made to this figure - while the first one had a hinge that allowed you to open the gun to "reload," this one is a single immobile piece. Of course, the first one was just plastic and this one is solid pewter. Same size and scale, and it still fits in the holster, but it's noticably heavier.
No changes have been made to Ivan the corpse. Comrade Klimatovich is the same 4 1/8" decomposed figure we got before: bendy arms, joints at the neck and shoulders, noose to sling him over Hb's shoulder... it's all there. No surprises.
There were 2,000 Extended Features Hellboy figures made, but the run was divided evenly between calm and angry faces - the open- and closed-mouth variations. There is no open-hand version of the polystone fist.
So, is Extended Features Hellboy a worthwhile addition to the line? Overall, it has more to offer than any of the other versions, even if it is limited in a few ways. Given the choice, I'd rather have the Extended Features Hellboy than either of the regular versions.
Do you like the real buckles on the coat, or do they just cause too much of a headache? Tell us on our message board, The Loafing Lounge.