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Marvel Universe
by yo go re

Peter Dinklage is in an X-Men movie, and he's not playing this guy? Let's hear it for a rare moment of non-stereotypical casting!

Eugene Milton Judd was a goliath, a man with exceptional physical ability who travelled the world in search of adventure. When he was forced to trap an evil spirit inside his body, Judd's seven-foot frame collapsed into half the size while virtually freezing his aging process and giving him superhuman abilities. With advanced speed, strength, and agility - plus a form dense enough to withstand bullets - this demolition dwarf is a gymnastic wrecking ball unafraid to hurl himself into anything - or anyone.

We've talked before about how that whole "evil spirit" thing was a drastic misunderstanding of the intention of the character, and that he was named after the hockey equipment. He was apparently killed in the wake of the House of M crossover, but became the king of Hell and eventually did what everybody on a mutant team eventually does: he came back to life.

Clearly, Puck gets a unique sculpt. Wolverine may have been a foot too tall, but Hasbro didn't repeat that mistake with Puck. The character is officially 3'6", so in a 4" scale, he should be 2⅓" tall, right? Well, the toy is 2½", so he's a little taller than he should be, but not by much - he's been through enough changes in his life that you could easily excuse this small discrepency. Too bad we don't have any other Alpha Flight people to show him next to (yes, there was a Guardian figure in Series 1, but we're talking interesting characters that would be worth purchasing).

Puck's costume is re-created here in all its terrible glory. His super-thick, muscular arms and legs are bare, and even the hair on them is molded into the figure. Gross. The big golden P on his chest - STOP THAT SNICKERING, BACK THERE! - is just painted on, not sculpted, but his torso is just as well-defined as his limbs. He's sculpted leaning slightly to the side, perhaps getting ready for his trademark whirling cartwheel attack.

As you can see in the picture up above, Puck has enough articulation (and balance) to successfully pull off the fourth articulation test: a Beast handstand. He has a balljointed head, hinged neck, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel wrists, swivel/hinge hips, swivel boots, and swivel/hinge ankles. That's about the most you could possibly hope for on a guy this size. And we can only assume the reason they didn't sculpt his letter is because they're planning to reuse this sculpt later, as... uh... hmm. Moving on.

Puck has no accessories, but he does come with a second character. No, sadly, it's not Sasquatch - that would have been a nice combo of big and small. Rather, the other character is just a glorified accessory: a white repaint of the bird that came with Series 3's Falcon. Since it's white we can tell it's meant to represent Snowbird, but without her human form, there's not much point. Maybe this is a nod to the ToyBiz Alpha Flight two-packs back in the late '90s, where Snowbird and Puck were paired up. If Hasbro plans to release her later then this will be a nice preview, but for now, it's rather dull.

And really, that sums up this release as a whole: Puck is a very cool figure in his own right, but without a team to put him alongside, he doesn't appeal as strongly as he should.

-- 09/23/13

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