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Phoenix

X-Men Legends
by yo go re

Guess who's back - back again. Jeanie's back! Tell a friend.

An expert of psionic forces, Jean Grey uses her powers of telepathy and telekinesis as the mind-controlling hero, Phoenix.

Oh, okay, so from that bio, we're to assume that this isn't the original Phoenix - ie, the Phoenix Force in the shape of Jean Grey's body - but rather the real Jean Grey, when she came to terms with her past and her potential, and began wearing a copy of the costume Phoenix had designed. Which, honestly, is a little weird. What's the thinking, there? "Sure, she committed stellar-scale genocide, but damn did that girl know fashion! Saves me having to come up with anything myself." It would be like Spider-Man continuing to dress like Ven-- oh, yeah.

Hasbro made a Jean Grey in Marvel Legends Series 5, but this one doesn't share any of the molds. However, the sculptor has made sure to make this toy's face look just like the last one. She doesn't have the headgear any longer, and her eyes are painted the right size this time, but if you look at the two toys, it's obvious they're the same person.

The body is interesting. The '90s Jean was based on the SHIELD body, but this one is not. It's the same general size as the medium female body, but it's definitely not: if you compare the shape of her abdominal muscles, you'll see that they're different from those on other uses; she's got more of a tummy, for lack of a better term. Just a little bit of roundness, rather than all sharp angles. Looking closely, this same belly was also used for the Web-Swinging Heroines pair, and we just failed to notice it at the time - being solid green, rather than hidden behind complex paint apps, makes it easier to spot now. Call it a "medium female #2." Enchantress still used the older one, but Kitty Pryde has this one, too.

Jean gets the gesturing hands that are so often used for mystical/mental characters, and wears a sash. Considering that Dave Cockrum designed the costumes for both Phoenix and Ms. Marvel, you really get the feeling that the guy had a thing for drawing attention to ladies' hips. Since this one is a reused piece, it lacks the triangular Phoenix-symbol clasp on the side. She wears wedge heels, and her hair billows out behind her. Her suit is a hunter green, while the gloves, boots and chest emblem are a metallic yellow, falling between the yellow and gold used on ToyBiz's light and dark Phoenices.

The body may be minorly different, but the articulation isn't. Jean moves at the ankles, knees, thighs, hips, torso, wrists, elbows, shoulders, neck and head. Her hair is big and weighty, but the hinge and balljoint up there are strong enough to support it - you'll have more trouble finding her center of gravity than you will with floppy joints. It's a real shame that Hasbro couldn't go back and give us the old ToyBiz flame base, so she'd have a chance to fly. Yes, we already established that this is just Jean, not the Phoenix Force, but her powers still manifested that way at the time.

Of course, if Hasbro could have given us the fire bird, there probably wouldn't have been any room (neither in the budget nor in the packaging) to include the chest of this series' Juggernaut Build-A-Figure. It's a biggy!

This year's Toy Fair revealed a Cyclops and Dark Phoenix two-pack, in which she'll apparently have translucent hair and a flaming bird accessory that can attach to her arm. If you're not building Juggernaut, and only want one Phoenix, you may prefer to wait for that release, but this one is excellent as-is!

-- 04/10/17


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