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by yo go re

And sometimes is seen a strange spot in the sky
A human being that was given to fly

Archangel Before the battle between good and evil mutants escalated to the brink of genetic war, carefree millionaire Warren Worthington III was the high-flying, heroic Angel. But Warren's world came crashing down when dark forces conspired to clip his wings. Recovered from his brush with evil, Archangel again soars the skies alongside the uncanny X-Men!

In order to better allow the Marvel Legends line to focus on the great characters of the Marvel Universe, the X-Men were spun off into a line of their own. While it looks like that move was incredibly short-lived, the figures it offered were, for the most part, quite good.

Angel's been with the X-Men since the very beginning, forgiving a few vacations with other teams. Originally a haughty playboy, Warren was Scott Summers' main competitor for the affections of Jean Grey, trading on his pretty-boy looks and large... bankroll to win her hand. How was he supposed to know she had a thing for scrawny, uncomfortable geeks?

There have been only a few figures of Archangel over the years, the first available in the original 1990 X-Men line. Things have come a long way since then, thankfully, so now we get a nice update.

Standing 6" tall, Archangel moves at 36 points: toes, ankles, boot tops, knees, hips, waist, abs, neck, shoulders, upper biceps, elbows, forearms, wrists and fingers. His torso is slightly angular, setting him apart from figures like Daredevil and the Silver Surfer.

Pissy Smurf Since Archangel's costume was a skin-tight number with no details (better aerodynamics, donchaknow?), that's what the figure has given us: a plain body painted blue and pink, with only Warren's light blue face showing through. The edges of his cowl are not sculpted elements, which would make him great for a bald head custom; Professor X, anyone? The painted pattern is surprisingly crisp all over.

it's like a 747 on legs

The X-Men Classics line doesn't come with bases like Marvel Legends do - rather, they have play features. Archangel's got big, articulated wings with rocket-firing action. When Walt and Louise Simonson introduced Archangel, his wings seemed rather like airplane wings, segmented sheets of metal; other artists gave the impression of individual metal feathers. This figure goes the second route, giving us some beautifully sculpted flappers.

The wings, which have an 18" span, look great on the figure. They plug into the figure like a backpack, and are articulated at two points each. backpack The pack is a bit bulky, and sticks out from Archangel's back a little too far. The "rockets" are quite disappointing: one of the worst innovations in late-90s toymaking had to be the exchange of spring-loaded rockets for ones propelled by a stupid coiled bit of silver paper, and that's the kind that ToyBiz gave Warren for this toy. With a diameter of 3/8", the rockets can either be plugged into the front of the pack or stored under the tail in the back. This would have been much better as a plain accessory, sans the firing mechanism.

No matter what the future of the X-Men Classics line, you have to give it credit for providing us with two of the five original X-Men teammates in its first series. Though Warren's back to being Angel now, this is a damn fine figure of an incarnation he had for a long time.

Anyone know how Angel got his wings back? Tell us on our message board, the Loafing Lounge.


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