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Marvel's Most Wanted
by yo go re

In 1998, ToyBiz released a set of toys under the "Marvel's Most Wanted" banner. The line comprised three figures, but really should have been called "Marvel's Most Wanted plus also Spat and Grovel," because there was no way that pair was on anyone's wishlist. They only appeared in four issues before being forgotten, and the toy was one of the slowest selling ToyBiz ever released. You could still find Spat and Grovel on shelves when KB Toys was going out of business, and if you go into pretty much any specialty store that sells action figures today, you're almost guaranteed to find them. Blink, meanwhile, was the shortpack.

In an alternate world where Charles Xavier has died and Apocalypse rules supreme, Clarice Ferguson is a young mutant struggling to stay alive. Fighting alongside the astonishing X-Men, Blink uses her super powers of teleportation for the good of mankind. Her mutant abilities allow her to temporarily "blink" an object out of existence with the aid of a phasing pulse. Few people know that while just a girl, Blink's life was saved from the forces of Apocalypse by none other than Sabretooth!

Blink was created by Scott Lobdell and Joe Madureira for the "Phalanx Covenant" story - they were introducing Generation X, and needed someone to die to show the threat was real. Unfortunately, they hadn't counted on her becoming the breakout star of the series in the few issues before her regularly scheduled death. So when the Age of Apocalypse story came around, Marvel used the opportunity to bring her back to life.

This was a fairly good figure for the time. Her sculpt is exaggerated and stylized, but the costume is accurate and the musculature of her torso is good. As an AoA X-Man, she has the Magneto-inspired collar. She's also wearing a green dress that's slit up the sides, tall green gloves [No, sleeves - they only cover her arms, not her hands --ed.] and folded green boots. Her ensemble is completed by a purple band around her right thigh. The lower part of the dress is a separate PVC piece that's glued permanently in place around her waist.

Clarice is a fairly distinctive character, with her lilac skin, dark pink hair and elven ears. In both the regular and Age of Apocalypse timelines, she had dark pink tattoos on her face. These actually mark her as part of Clan Akkaba, the descendants of Apocalypse. The toy's eyes are blank white, though they were shown to be either blue or green in the comics.

The articulation is sadly lacking, even by late '90s standards. Her neck is a swivel, but the long hair keeps it from going very far. She has swivel/hinge shoulders, hinged elbows, swivel wrists, swivel waist, V-crotch and a swivel for the right thigh. The arms are okay, but the legs are wildly preposed and you can't do anything with them. Despite the slightly hunched stance, she stands an even 5" tall. Considering that she's meant to be fairly young, this size is good enough to allow her to integrate fairly well with your 6" Marvel Legends (just pretend she's an extra petite girl).

Blink's accessories include a softgoods cape, a quiver with two removable spikes (to throw at enemies for long-distance teleportation) and a really cool teleportation effect. It's a big translucent blue disc, about 5¼" in diameter, and it's designed to look like a large, rippling puddle.

The disc splits in half so you can have Clarice emerging from within. There's one hole sized for her ankle and one for her wrist, so either she's playing interdimensional Twister, or the base is meant to be used vertically - that would explain the suction cup on the back. Because of her insufficient articulation, it's nearly impossible to get both her hand and her foot into the base at the same time. I've only ever found one pose that works, and even then "works" is a pretty loose descriptor.

I remember how hard it was to find Blink back in the day. Like many a female figure, she was shortpacked, and I'd been scouring the shelves for her by the time I finally found her - and as soon as I opened her, she broke. I didn't know about freezing stuck joints back then, so her leg sheared right off. I immediately drove back to the mall to get a replacement, despite the holiday crowds. Good thing, too, because that was the last time I ever saw her. Now that Marvel Legends is making a comeback in 2012, maybe we can finally get a modern update of this fan-favorite.

-- 02/14/11

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