Toy Review: Kickstarter Spawn Remastered – Modern Version
Why review a Kickstarter figure, when it’s only available to non-backers at ridiculous scalper prices? Simple. Todd McFarlane explicitly intends to do more of these so it’s worth looking at what makes them premium collectibles, versus Walmart offerings with gold stickers. Kickstarter Spawn sees McFarlane Toys remaking their very first Spawn action figure from the ground up, now in 7-inch scale rather than 5-inch. The company produced three variants, which ship in different iterations with different accessories depending upon how they were ordered. This review mainly covers the “modern” variant, as purchased in the group three-pack. Items included may be different if purchased alone.
Modern Spawn really isn’t exactly the modern version. He’s a repaint of the classic costume, with the big gauntlet and giant boot added. The actual modern style has a more ragged cape and textured symbiote body, while the classic goes for a more classic spandex appearance. Mortal Kombat Spawn best represents this look, and the difference is clear:
But first, the packaging. The three-pack ships each of the three individual figures in separate double-thick shipping boxes, which are then padded, given plastic box-corner casters, and out in another double-thick box. If they don’t show up in mint condition, it’s through no lack of trying. Then, each box also features a slipcover with logo prints, one of which sports shiny foil.
A ribbon assists the buyer with pulling open the box, to initially reveal a figure fact-sheet and certificate of authenticity, both with digitally reproduced signatures.
Remove the top layer of foam, and the figure gets partly revealed, along with compartments in the foam to hold his bonus accessories. To anyone buying Modern Spawn in the three-pack, those are a rocket-launcher gun, necro-knife, necroplasm blast, and Al Simmons head. This, along with the masked head on the classic version, has an extra neck joint. The unmasked heads do not. Anyone who ordered this figure by itself with an autograph probably has the autographed plaque right below.
In the three-pack, the autograph plaque comes with the Classic, and hides a giant sword underneath. The bonus head there is a screaming unmasked face.
Remove that layer, and the figure’s clamshell packaging is underneath. And unlike the O.G. McFarlane figures, this clamshell opens and reseals with ease. It’s not 100% “collector-friendly,” as some of the accessories, and Spawn himself, are held in place with plastic ties that one must delicately cut. But it’s close.
The backboard also serves as a slipcover for a comic, and unlike the original figure, this comic is based on Spawn issue #1. However, it’s a “director’s cut” version, with mostly uncolored pages, and McFarlane explaining every design choice.
Each Spawn figure includes one accessory inside the clamshell, aside from the four extra hands. Modern Spawn is the only one not to have a unique one in there. His is a wooden club with nails and a hook, that’s provided as a bonus with the other figures. On the other hand, Classic Spawn sticks a unique gun in there, while Artist’s Proof Spawn contains a circular necroplasm blast. Gotta open those figures to get those weapons!
The hands and heads swap out easily. Like on Mondo’s larger collector figures, they don’t stick in super-tight. This figure’s engineering is not for rough play. Throw him into action, and hands will fall off. The hands feature more open necro-blast “jazz hands,” open-grip sword/gun hands, and hole-grip knife hands.
Heads switch out with ease too, attached by a straight up post. On the unmasked heads with no extra neck joint, some collectors complain that moving the head anywhere but flush with the neckline makes it look bad. All the heads have a black, rounded bottom, but frankly, it matches the notion that the symbiote costume is filling in the gap. A Spawn fan oughtn’t to have a real issue with that. Modern Spawn’s default head in package, incidentally, is the shoelace-faced “hamburger head” unmasked look.
McFarlane figures, across almost all the company’s licenses nowadays, feature a standard 22-point articulation system. Kickstarter Spawn has most of it, with exceptions. The neck is obvious. The shoulders appear to not have the butterfly joints, but they do exist, just concealed under the torso. Mid-torso articulation is absent, leaving Spawn’s upper body in a slightly twisted pre-pose that divides fans. And while the hips include the normal hinge-cut-concealed-inside-the-thigh, it works so much better on this figure than most, somehow. Rotating the upper thigh feels a lot easier.
Still, the firm cape restricts movement. It’s stuck on solidly at the shoulders, in contrast to the original Spawn’s, which used to come off easily. After all these years, it does finally have the hinges on the cape that the original promised and failed to deliver. Though it doesn’t actually close that much, it offers options. And it’s appropriately giant like a McFarlane drawing. Let’s see a Batman with one of these.
Also, the chains are real metal.
Spawn includes the standard McFarlane figure stand, painted in super-braggadocious style this time.
For casual fans, the Mortal Kombat Spawn could seem good enough. For longterm fans, this figure really kicks up the presentation, and delivers a figure more like classic McFarlane art. As Kickstarter figures go, it came relatively cheap, but will anyone feel as excited by, say, Medieval Spawn? Todd’s counting on it. One cannot deny, however, that aside from the occasional McFarlane boast along the way about a feature that didn’t pan out (the ability to remove the cape, for example), this figure delivers what it should.
Here’s a quick look at the all-gray Artist’s Proof version:
Will anyone be bold enough to paint that figure themselves? More likely, it will become the one of the three that most choose to leave in package.
Take a further look at Kickstarter Spawn in our gallery below. Then let us know what you think in comments.
Recommended Purchase: McFarlane – Mortal Kombat 12 – Commando Spawn
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