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Super Poseable Green Goblin

Spider-Man
by yo go re

Man oh man, was Spider-Man the movie ever good! And man oh man, do the movie action figures live up to that standard!

He is Spider-Man's greatest enemy; he has been, almost since the beginning. A maniacal manifestation of Norman Osborn's chemical-induced insanity, the Green Goblin has done more than any other villain to wreck the web-slinger's world.

If a hero's greatness can be judged by the enemies he faces, then Spider-Man is one of the greatest. His arch-nemesis is the father of his best friend, and he knows who Spider-Man really is. Clark Kent is safe when he puts on his glasses; Peter Parker can't let his guard down for a second. One of the richest men in town, Norman Osborn can make his foe's life hell whether in costume or out.

Now if you're going to get the Spider-Man figure (and you know you are), then you'll need someone for him to fight. Given the two Goblin figures available, the best is this "super poseable" version.

Painted with a semi-metallic green, GG stands 6" tall and has 34 points of movement: toes, ankles, shins, knees, thighs, hips, waist, fingers, wrists, forearms, elbows, biceps, shoulders, and neck. Whew! The sculpted costume looks just like the film version, which was a much better choice than the unitard and purple elf-shoes of the comics, or the sword-wielding bag lady Alex Ross designed.

That wickedly grinning mask is removable, revealing a stunning likeness of Willem Dafoe beneath; his hair is slicked back, and he truly looks like he's just gone a few rounds with our hero. In action figure form, you can see quite clearly how the Goblin mask is simply a characature of Dafoe's already creepy bone structure. Well, a characature with a swept-back bicycle helmet grafted on.

There were a lot of complaints about the Green Goblin's "Power Rangers reject" look, but it made a lot of sense; the glider was designed as an instrument of war, and the suit was designed as personal protection, with all the padding that pro skateboarders wear built-in. They tested a more traditional mask, but this one still makes more sense in the context of the film. One thing the toy does miss, however? The mask in the movie was not solid green, like it is here - it faded to plain grey, which was often lit so it appeared purple, thereby honoring the comic roots.

Speaking of the glider, no Green Goblin figure would be complete without his favorite mode of transportation. Could you imagine if this supposedly big, bad villain had to take the bus or the subway to attack his prey? Pfft! With a 6⅛" wingspan, the glider has all sorts of technical and textural detailing: hydraulic pistons, stabilizing turbines, rockets, thrusters, blasters and blades; this thing is no flat piece of plastic. Each wing is individually articulated, and has an embedded pumpkin bomb (though if you want to remove them, you'll have to pry the plastic plugs out; why aren't they easier to get at?). There are pegs on the footholds to, well, hold his feet in place, duh. The set includes a 3" tall clear plastic stand, so even when you're not playing with the figure, he can still hover menacingly.

There's even a packaging variation, for those of you who are into that sort of thing - the original (limited) release had Normie in a very straightforward, static pose. Once he got into wide release, however, he was posed to show off his articulation. No matter which version you pick up, this is a great figure; likeness, playability, and accessories all add up to a wonderfully wicked villain.

-- 05/31/02


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