Last week, when we took a look at the first Power Ranger in Super7’s line of Ultimates! action figures based on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers I expressed some surprise that Hasbro would license out this brand since it competes with their own Lighting Collection. I do feel like the actual Rangers are pretty safe. People who are into MMPR will buy a set of Rangers from both companies and be happy. When it comes to the monsters though then I think Hasbro could have an issue. In truth, the monsters have been a relatively small part of the Lightning Collection. The few that have been released have been of the deluxe variety with an increased cost relative to the Rangers. They’ve also been kind of terrible from what I’ve seen. A few look like they’re sculpted well enough, but Hasbro really cheaped out on the paint apps for most of them and they just look awful as a result. It’s surprising because MMPR is an in-house brand for Hasbro now. I may not like it, but I understand when a Marvel Legends figure or a Star Wars release has less money put into it because those have the additional burden of a licensing fee, but that’s not the cast with Power Rangers.
Since Hasbro has declined to make any monsters worth my money, I naturally saw Super7’s line as a potential replacement. I like having villains, especially monster types, that are bigger than the heroes so the larger scale of Super7’s figures didn’t seem like an obstacle to me, but really a potential benefit. Though so far I’ve only committed to buying one such figure, but if it’s any good I may change my mind. And that figure is Goldar. I don’t need or want a big MMPR collection, but Goldar always felt like a character worth having. He’s Rita Repulsa’s general and basically her right hand man…monster. Despite his inability to actually defeat the Power Rangers, he was kept in that position when Lord Zedd usurped Rita’s throne and attempted to take matters into his own hands. As an enemy, I think Goldar was the first monster the Rangers battled in their Megazord, though I also haven’t gone back to watch the show in years so I could be misremembering. I always liked him as a design. He’s some sort of armored wolf, and as the name implies, he seems to like gold. He looks scary, and even though he wasn’t exactly batting a thousand, I always felt like he was a threat to the Power Rangers and not the show’s version of a Bebop or Rocksteady.
Super7 apparently felt like Goldar was rather important and he was chosen to be the main villain in the first wave of Ultimates! Like Tommy, he comes in the same Ultimates! styled box with a green slipcover over a window box inside. He does get his own “power coin” logo on the slipcover and there’s a bio and still from the show on the back of the inner box. Once removed, Goldar stands a mighty 8″ or so to the top of his head, a touch taller if you count the horns of his helm. He looks rather resplendent in his golden armor which appears to be fully painted. Like the Green Ranger, it looks like Super7 committed to giving us a nice finish by casting the figure in the appropriate color, but then painting over it with the same. It gives the figure a much more “premium” appearance which is a good thing considering he’s priced at $55. The inner parts of his suit are painted red in accordance with the character design and there are a few gems or something painted as well. The face looks really nice as it’s blue with shading around the eyes. The teeth are cleanly painted and the furry…things…that drape over his shoulders look fine too. The crown of his helm is done in a translucent, yellow, plastic that almost looks like stained glass. It’s an unexpected, but welcomed, embellishment. If I am to nitpick the paint I’d first go to the black strap on the calf area which do nothing to convey the illusion of an actual strap. They’re flatly painted and unconvincing. Some of the red could have also been applied cleaner. It’s pretty hazy around the kneepads and some of the hands are a bit messy. In Super7’s defense, the hands are hard to paint as there are gold plates over the digits with red underneath. Hasbro declined to attempt such a thing and I’ll say for the most part they look good enough. I also feel like the feet could have used some shading as they’re the only part that looks “plasticy” to me.
As for the sculpt, well there’s really little to complain about. Super7 absolutely nailed the portrait with Goldar which is something I wasn’t sold on with the Lightning Collection release. This looks like the character to me and I feel like if he started talking on my shelf I wouldn’t even be surprised. Most of the body has a nice texture to it as the gold is dented like a golf ball in several parts. I am not an expert on the show, but it looks accurate enough to me. All of the details I associate with the character are present like the giant codpiece and the bundled up tail on his rear. Super7 has received numerous criticisms from me over the years, but rarely is sculpting an issue and this guy is no different. He might really be one of their best which is not faint praise.
Goldar has a rather expensive look to him so I was expecting Super7 to skimp on the accessories, but he’s actually pretty robust. For heads, we have two options which are essentially mouth closed and mouth open. Both look great, though I think I like the open one just a little bit more. For hands, we get a whole bunch: fists, gripping with horizontal hinges, gripping with vertical hinges, and open hands. For those gripping hands he has his rather large sword which is painted very nicely with hits of silver and gold and the red gem in the center. He also has his little wing nubbins on the back which can be removed and replaced with open, black, wings that also look quite nice. They’re entirely sculpted in plastic and the feathers are nicely textured and the paint is clean. In addition to all of that, we get some episode specific stuff. There’s an elaborate chest that contains the power coins after they stole them or something. The chest has a hinged lid so it can open and close and the paint job is pretty damn spectacular. Goldar also has the five Badges of Darkness which I think he gave out to the Putties to create evil, clone, Power Rangers. They’re identical and they just resemble grey stones with a light blue gem in the center of a star carving. Nothing special, but those more interested in episode-specific trinkets will get more mileage out of them than I. His extra stuff at least feels more purposeful than most of the stuff the Green Ranger came with.
Goldar is not a character that looks like he’ll move very well, but again, Super7 kind of surprised me here. For starters, his head is on a hinged-ball peg. I do not like that, but at least he looks up and down okay and can turn his head. He just doesn’t really get much in the way of more nuanced poses. His head sits high on the ball, so he gets more than the Green Ranger, but Super7, please just go back to using double ball pegs. The shoulders are the hinged ball joints that peg into the arm and he can lift his arms out to the side past horizontal. This really surprised me as he’s got some rather large shoulder pads, but they do a solid job of getting out of the way. Rotating the arms all around isn’t going to happen, but you get enough. He has a biceps swivel and a single-hinged elbow that can’t quite hit 90. You also get a rotation point at the elbow as well. The wrists rotate and he has the proper hinge for the gripping hands, so that’s a plus. They are a tad loose though and his heavy sword can be a touch finicky to pose, but it seems to hold in position well enough. In the diaphragm, we get what’s probably a ball joint of some kind that lets the figure rotate, but also tilt to the sides. He arches back a little, and crunches forward a little as well. In both cases, it’s more range than I expected. He does have a waist twist below that and some hinged ball joints at the hips. Goldar can just about hit a split before the armor at his hips gets in the way and he can kick forward to almost horizontal, though he can’t really kick back at all. You get some rotation at the thigh and the single-hinged knee can go about 90 degrees. It also rotates a little at the joint. The ankles feature the usual hinge and rocker, though the shape of the plating of the armor does restrict things a bit. The hinge goes back well enough, but you don’t get much forward. The rocker is also limited, but I think you’re going to get enough out of it to keep his feet flat even in some rather wide stances.
I would say Goldar articulates pretty well for such a design. I admit, some of that opinion is colored by my low expectations going in which were influenced by both the look of the figure and my own experience with Super7. I think they did a good job though and I don’t really feel like other companies would do much better. Yeah, you could slip in some double joints at the elbows and knees and maybe get a little better than 90, but is that really going to up one’s enjoyment of the figure? I think the easiest point for criticism is the head as Super7 should ditch the hinged ball peg. I suppose a hinged joint in the diaphragm could get more ab crunch? That’s probably a little more expensive to implement though and presents gapping issues usually. He basically reminds me of a NECA figure and his range is pretty comparable to Warduke. And since he has a less restricting his torso, he probably moves better than that figure. That figure is probably a little visually more impressive, but it’s definitely more subjective than usual. At least Super7 is comparing well to something that’s much cheaper since usually they present worse and cost more, a true double whammy.
One thing I do need to talk about though is the quality control issues people have been having with this figure in particular. I have seen and heard from lots of folks who had issues with the head and wings. I didn’t actually mention the wings in the articulation portion, but they do connect via a ball and socket joint on the figure’s back and they have a hinge as well. The left wing seems fine, but the right is a bit iffy. The socket feels like it’s off just a tiny amount, probably not enough to notice with the naked eye, but it’s noticeably tight. People have been snapping the peg when trying to rotate or use the hinge. I noticed before even inserting that wing that the hinge also stressed the plastic when pushed all the way. I guess naturally that means don’t push it all the way, but it still should not be. With the head, I’ve seen folks have a hard time getting the alternate head on and snapping the post as a result. One person I talked to snapped it just rotating the head after getting it on. I mentioned in the review that the heads seem to sit high on the ball and I think that’s by design to help clear the stuff around his neck. If so, it’s a bad design because every toy collector is going to think they need to seat that head all the way down and if that’s breaking things then Super7 deserves to have to eat some costs replacing them. Just elongate the post, or find another solution, this one feels half-assed. Out of an abundance of caution, I heated the little wing nubs on my figure before removing them and also heated the wings before inserting them. Once in, I’m just leaving them alone as I posed them via the hinge before inserting them. For the head, the default one came off without any issues and I heated the open mouth one before putting it on. It seems fine, but it doesn’t really want to rotate so I won’t force it. I prefer the look of the open wings with the open mouth so I would have been bummed if they had broke in some way. I technically didn’t have any issues with my figure, but I feel like a lot of others had to suffer broken Goldars in order for me to have such an experience. I guess tread lightly and make sure you purchase from a place with a good return policy if it comes to that.
Quality concerns aside, I think this is one of the best Super7 figures I own. It’s rare that they hit in all three phases for me: sculpt, paint, articulation. Usually they try to close the gap by tossing a bunch of junk into the box with their figures, but with Goldar that’s not needed. And better yet, most of his “junk” actually feels purposeful. While I liked the Green Ranger as a figure, I couldn’t help but feel like it was overpriced. With Goldar, I don’t really get that feeling. I think he’s actually pretty damn good and for $55 he’s the rare Super7 figure I can say is worth it. I have a lot of Super7 figures that I’m happy with, but objectively feel are overpriced. Goldar gets to be both objectively and subjectively a good figure. If you’re one of the folks who had a different experience with the head or wings then you might feel differently, but I’m reviewing both the figure and my experience with the figure and for me this is exactly what I wanted out of this character. He looks good with the other releases in the line, and extra menacing with the Lightning Collection Rangers. He can face off with Super7’s Green Ranger, and look good battling the T-Rex zord and he’s probably the star of this inaugural wave. If King Sphinx or Lord Zedd turns out this good then I may need to add some more bad guys to my collection in the future.
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