One of the more impressive things about this set is how well it reproduces the old look and feel of these characters. There is a lot of attention to detail, and it is obvious that the pictures on the inside cover of the box are a guide. Everything from the two ninja stars in Storm Shadowís belt to Destroís MARS briefcase is included. Even the poses in the box are meant to mimic the classic pictures on the inside cover.
The packaging is well done and looks great, but the figures themselves are done well too. Paint application for the most part is spot on. There are a few blurred lines such as the Cobra Trooperís mask and Destroís chest, but for the most part the paint application looks very clean. Joints blend in with the overall appearance of the figures except for a few problem areas. The elbow joints can look awkward because of their size, and the ball jointed torso doesnít work well on some of these figures. In particular the chest of the Cobra Trooper is ugly, and on Destro the body shape looks very unnatural. For the most part though the sculpt on these figures looks fluid and more sophisticated than figures from the Real American hero line.
One of the drawbacks is that the 25th Anniversary figures are larger than the older figures, and so wonít integrate into an established display well. They are great as stand alone figures, and go well with other 25th Anniversary figures. The display box is also nice, but takes up a large amount of room and is not the most efficient use of space because of the slanted sides. Overall, Iím very happy with the look and feel of these figures. These figures have a less plastic, more detailed look than other figures that I enjoy.
Storm Shadow looks the best. Itís easiest to see the details on this figure because of the light colors, and the joints are fluid with the sculpt except for around the elbows. The strap of the quiver is a little large and bulky looking, but for the most part doesnít get in the way. The sculpt on Cobra Commander is similarly fluid, but he looks much more plastic looking because of the large fields of blue. A darker blue may have worked better on this figure, but for the most part he looks good.
Destro has an unnatural look because of his biceps, thighs, and chest. The muscles have a squarish shape, and the top half of the torso is noticeably wider than the bottom. The chest looks odd too because the chest is much farther forward than the neck. He can look odd in poses that expose the chest area too much, but he looks good with his arms posed so that they hide some of the chest area. His left hand though does not hold his briefcase well at all, which is disappointing since there are so many accessories with these figures.
Baroness has a fairly good sculpt that is close to natural looking. Because of the black of the body though, all the visual focus is on the face, which comes off as more cartoonish looking that the other figures in this pack. She also holds her gun a little awkwardly, but can be made to look good. Overall she fits right in with the boys.
The Cobra Trooper looks a little awkward around the midsection, but his main problem is holding the gun. I tried taking the clear plastic band off, and he simply didnít look good holding his gun, so I had to put the rubber loop back in place. His face looks more cartoonish like Baroness because of the brighter skin tone. For the most part he looks fine standing alongside Cobra Commander, but isnít very impressive as a stand alone figure.
These figures have ball jointed heads, torso joints, ankles, and elbows. All the figures except Baroness have pin jointed knees. The torso joints donít have a wide range of motion, going forward only a minimal amount. The shoulders get their full range of motion, but the legs canít even move up 90 degrees forward or to the side. This can be a problem when trying to put them in any vehicles. On Baroness, the hair is sculpted well so that it doesnít interfere with head movement. The articulation in general is an improvement over the Real American Hero figures, and for the most part is adequate for these figures. Considering the size of these figures, they have a substantial range of motion.
These figures look great on display in the package. They can be taken out of the package and put back in, but getting these figures back in the plastic is a real pain. These figures look good on display, but are a little lonely without some other 25th Anniversary figures to be displayed with. Baroness can be a little hard to balance, but the others donít have any problems. Overall, the attention to detail shines through with these figures, and theyíre a great addition to a collection.
Storm Shadow is the winner of the bunch, having the best sculpt, articulation, and overall look. There could have been some improvements on these figures, but for the most part Iím happy with them the way they are, and satisfied with the new versions of these characters.