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Titanium Man

Marvel Select
by yo go re

It's been a hot minute since we reviewed anything from Marvel Select, hasn't it? But sometimes you see something listed on the NCRL and just know you've got to have it.

Numerous villains have made up Iron Man's gallery of enemies, with many of them similarly armor-based in order to counter Iron Man's abilities. The Russians have created both the Crimson Dynamo and Titanium Man to try and stop the threat posed by Iron Man, and have fought Stark through numerous iterations.

Cutting and pasting text directly from Marvel's site is not copywriting.

Boris Bullski was a popular and fast-rising member of the USSR's Communist Party when he was sent to Siberia for political reasons. He eventually found that other prisoners in the gulag had been assistants to Anton Vanko, helping him build the first Crimson Dynamo armor - they were probably imprisoned there after he defected to America. Anyway, Boris convinced them to work on a new suit of armor, but since they didn't have access to any efficient tools or miniaturization equipment, the thing had to be gigantic. (The frowny face was purely optional, though.)

Diagrams of the armor's workings even recognized there's no way a human would comfortably fit inside: the pilot's wrists end up near the elbows, and his feet come down mid-shin. Official sources list the Titanium Man armor as standing 8'9" - in Marvel Select's 7" scale, that would translate to a little less than 10¼" tall, meaning technically this figure is about half an inch too short. Can you believe it! It stands just over 9½", which would also make it too big for Marvel Legends, but that line has never shied away from over-inflating its figures, so into that collection he goes!

Tittsy [I am 100% sure no one has ever nicknamed him that --ed.] is not a colorful character. Well, he is, in that he is technically full of color, but that color is a solid dark green from head to toe. The only lighter spots on him are the silver soles of his boots, and the yellow eyes and frown on his otherwise-black faceplate. The entire toy is molded from a medium green plastic, meaning the green you see is fully painted. Nice!

The toy was sculpted by Gentle Giant (no surprise, since Diamond owns them now), but was designed by Yuri Tming. It really captures Chelovek-Titan's classic look, with the little skirt, rings around the joints, and studs on the chest. He's got segmented hands and fingers, and even the soles of his feet are completely detailed. The helmet has a ridge over the top and a scoop that runs around the back of the head from ear to ear.

The suit's helmet is technically an accessory (that and a pair of open hands). Right out of the package, he's got an unmasked Boris Bullski head. It's a nice sculpt, with an angry look on the face, a big beard, dark hair... and also it's gigantic! This thing is scaled to fit with the body as though the body were just a body, not a suit of thick armor around a body. It's bigger than the helmet is, which isn't how heads and helmets work! I know that Boris was a large guy - because the suit was so heavy and hard to move, he underwent some modification that increased his height to 7'1" and gave him the ability to lift 3,000 pounds even outside of the armor - but this is nuts! Not even Kumail's head grew this much!

Gone are the days when Marvel Select toys barely moved. Titanium Man has a balljointed head, chest, and hips; swivel/hinge shoulders, elbows, wrists, and knees; swivel thighs; and swivel/hinge/swivel ankles. There's also a swivel waist, but it's unnecessary with the chest joint being the way it is. My figure was assembled slightly crooked - you could tell, because the skirt ended up twisted to the side - and I had to physically disassemble the waist in order to get it turning, due to paint causing it to stick. That part was hard, but putting it back together properly was no sweat.

Diamond is still the only company to have made the proper Titanium Man. Hasbro made a videogame one and the skinny one, but only DST has made the original big boy. We'd even take a modernized version of the '90s armor ToyBiz made over either of the existing Titanium Men. Fortunately, this Marvel Select release is sizeable enough to fill that gap - and then some!

-- 12/20/21

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