Mondo X-Men the Animated Series Gambit Figure Toy Review

Gambit’s back! The trenchcoated Cajun was always a fan favorite, yet somehow only ended up appearing in the worst X-Men movie. With the resurgence of X-Men ’97, however, Remy is back in the spotlight, seemingly pushed towards a love triangle with Rogue and Magneto. Can his cooking and crop-topped profile win out over the old guy’s, er, magnetism? Time will tell.

1997 Called. It’s Taking Everything Back

For now, we have a Mondo animated-style figure to assess. Mondo sent us the limited-timed edition version, but the basic version includes the coolest stuff. The extras in the timed edition are fun bonuses for completists, but everything necessary for Remy to look cool is considered part of the basics this time. Mondo’s sold out of both, but a few online stores, as of this writing, still had the regular version in stock. Plus, Mondo has restocked it once already, so they may get it back again.

The key accessory for Gambit is his staff. Check. After that, the most significant thing about him is his energy-charged card-throwing. Both versions include this via a large energy piece that doesn’t simply clip on to a hand — it’s permanently attached to one. And it’s translucent, for a full energy effect, like something in a video game.

What a Card

Let’s say the big energy blasts aren’t your thing, though. In that case, if you want a more peaceful Gambit, both versions come with some pretty cool card shuffling effect hands. It’s quite the trick to line them both up just right, but the effect reads however you do it. The cards are permanently attached to these — and they have a Mondo logo on the back. Gambit’s doing some promo work in his off-hours, perhaps, or maybe he’s an avid customer of collectibles.

Other accessories include a tithe, four extra hands, and two mutant-power restraining collars, one for him and one for another figure. To get them on, pop off the head, and the basic comes with three heads: serious, smiling, and hood-off with loose ponytail.

Another accessory is a charged card, which is, by itself, completely translucent. In that form, it feels like a card already powered up and ready to throw. When combined with one of the accessories in the timed edition, however — a fanned-out hand of four aces — it can slide on top and make it look like he’s charging up one of the cards in his hand.

(Side note: have you ever tried throwing cards, with any kind of accuracy? It’s not easy. Mutant or no, Gambit’s ability to aim and hit correctly with them is a super power all its own.)

Deluxe Gambit’s other extras are a clear yellow (energy) whip, a gun that he can’t really hold very well because none of the hands are in a trigger-finger pose, and a half-and-half Mystique transformation head, with her hair very carefully contoured to his jacket shape.

Gambit’s stand is crotch-underhook, so one can balance him doing a Jean-Claude Van Damme split kick, albeit briefly, before he falls. Considering Van Damme was a popular fan casting choice for live-action Gambit back in the ’90s, it’s a fun touch. (Fan logic: “Who has a French-ish accent and muscles? Yeah, that guy!” They also wanted Glenn Danzig as Wolverine, which would definitely not have gone problematically in any way…)

Line up

The animation lines are nice and strong, as usual. It’s a matter of taste, but when it comes to figures based on animation, I favor the black lines and cel-shading look to simple sculpts only in the base color. Your mileage may vary, but Mondo’s side is taken. Flexibility is limited — his arms easily pop out if pushed too far but pop in again just fine. Taking off his coat is pointless since he only has coated arms.

So how does he look alongside the others?

The more you have, the better they look together. That’s probably the plan; get collectors hooked! With an awesome throwback cartoon now on the air, Mondo may want to consider more re-releases. If you can’t find a good price on this Gambit right now, maybe wait a bit and see what news may come.

In the meantime, enjoy the image gallery.

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