Welcome to Dan's ToyBox! In this review we will be discussing the first of two highly anticipated offerings from Bandai/Tamashii Nations SHFiguarts. The Spider-Man: No Way Home: Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man Action Figure. Fans of Tobey Maguire's Spidey have waited a long time for this figure, and it doesn't disappoint!
In 2002, Spider-Man swung onto the silver screen for the first time. Sure, we'd had a televised version in the late '70's but due to legal wrangling and property rights, the web slinger waited a long time to get the full Hollywood treatment. Tobey Maguire was selected to play the titular role and his portrayal of both Peter Parker and Spider-Man quickly became a fan favorite. He followed this success with two sequels, of which Spider-Man 2 is roundly praised as one of the best superhero movies AND movie sequels of all time. In 2012 Spider-Man was re-made, this time with Andrew Garfield as the webslinger and though the first film did well, the sequel wasn't as widely appreciated. Spider-Man would take a hiatus from the big screen for a period of time, until 2016 when, in a blockbuster deal between Sony and Marvel Studios, the webbed wonder would triumphantly return in Captain America: Civil War. Tom Holland was introduced as a high school age Peter Parker and Tony Stark's protege. Holland would get his first feature film: Spider-Man Homecoming, which received popular acclaim and would spawn two sequels, the last of which had fans clamoring with excitement. In 2021, Spider-Man: No Way Home hit theaters and the MCU would never be the same! As a result of the events in the previous film, Far From Home, Peter's identity has been revealed to the world. He seeks out the Master of Mystic Arts, Dr. Strange and asks the Sorceror to cast a spell making people forget that Peter Parker is Spider-Man. Thanks to Peter's interference, the spell is botched, opening the door to different dimensions and introducing the multiverse into the MCU. Fans were thrilled as both Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield reprised their roles as older, more experienced Spider-Men and helped the young Holland in his quest to set right the mayhem that resulted from the spell. I, personally, enjoyed the Garfield films, but for me the thrill of seeing Tobey back in action was the proverbial icing on the cake. When it was announced that SHFiguarts would be making both the Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man (Maguire's version) and the Amazing Spider-Man (Garfield's version) collectors went nuts! FNSM has finally hit and I am really pumped to talk about it with you!
As always, we will discuss four features: Accessories, Appearance, Articulation, and Affordability. After each has been reviewed and scored, we will assign the figure an overall grade of zero (terrible) to ten (awesome) ToyBoxes. Of course, the goal here at Dan's ToyBox is to try to be as objective as possible to help YOU the consumer make the best-informed decision as to whether or not you want to spend your money on a specific collectible. Let's get to it, shall we?
As has been the case with import figures, SHF likes to pack quite a bit with their figures. the FNSM comes with: One masked head sculpt, two unmasked head sculpts (one smiling with messy hair, the other with a series look), a fully covered neck piece and a partial covered neck piece to go with the unmasked sculpts. Six pairs of hands: one pair of fists, one pair web swinging, one pair thwipping, one pair wall crawling, one pair pointing, and one pair relaxed/open. He comes with a mask accessory that can be held in the relaxed hands and he comes with two short thwipping webs, two longer thwipping webs, and one long web for swinging. The webbing is molded in clear plastic, which is reminiscent of his movie webbing, but doesn't really show up well in photographs. Probably the only additional item I would have liked would have been a flight stand. The other No Way Home offerings, thus far, have had nice flight stands included in the special edition packages, which leads me to wonder if we'll see one eventually. Regardless, I have to say that I really love having so many different hand combinations to choose from and the finger pointing hands were included for a very specific purpose. We shall see if my theory holds true when the two remaining SHF No Way Home offerings are released. If I'm correct, posing the three Spider-Men together will be meme worthy. At first, I wasn't crazy about the smiling head sculpt. I thought it was just too goofy an expression, but the more I've looked at it, the more it's grown on me.
The stern looking expression looks just as good and shows Peter about to get down to serious business. I will say though, as much as I like the removed mask, I'm not too happy with the design of the sculpt. The way it is shaped gives an odd look to the mask. It almost seems that there is too much fabric in the mask as the eyepieces are nearly perfectly vertical to the neck opening, rather than hanging properly, the way the mask would fall.
You can see on the left, the bottom of the mask, neck opening, and while I get that the mask is kind of folded, it just doesn't make sense for the bottom of the mask to be 90 degrees rotated beneath the eyes, especially with how it is positioned in his hand. Yes, I'm being a bit "nit-picky" here, but I just can't get my mind around how this would look if it were real. I know this is something kind of dumb to get stuck on, but I like the idea of posing him maskless, but it hurts my eyes to look at these odd angles when he's holding the mask. Really though, if that's my only complaint with the accessories, we're in a pretty good place. All things considered, these are still solid accessories for the figure and so I'll give them an 8 out of 10.
This category is what really propels the figure into orbit! SHFiguarts has done an *ahem* Spectacular job capturing Tobey Maguire's film look. The costume details leap right at us from his film look, the raised webbing and spider logos are painted beautifully and the sculpted texturing throughout the entire costume is quite remarkable. There are even some spots of shading interspersed throughout the blue sections of the costume, which helps to give depth and dimension to the overall look. I really like the pearl white eye lenses and the cleanliness of the paint application on both the masked head and mask accessory. They stand out very well and just look great! The flesh tones on the unmasked heads are done very well also and match up nicely to the neck piece, but what really brings it home is the facial detail on the eyes and mouth. The excellent sculpting and paint applications give us a phenomenal rendition of Tobey Maguire that really completes the look of the figure. I will also say that, though it made taking an individual picture of them difficult, the clear webbing looks utterly fantastic with Spider-Man. I am sure that we'll eventually get a Mafex version of this figure, but I'll say, it's going to have to do some work to exceed how good this one appears! Goofy expression and all, this figure gets a 9 out of 10 for appearance.
As I've reviewed a number of SHFiguarts previously, we are all familiar with the engineering and articulation. The FNSM continues that great tradition as well. The heads will look up, down, and turn side to side easily. When coupled with the neck motion, you can get some great head tilting and even deeper downward looks. The shoulders sit on their normal butterfly joint, which allows for rotation, forward and backward pivot, and shrugging. I did notice a bit of issue with the right shoulder moving freely on the ball, but I was able to work it out. The biceps do have a nice cut and the double-jointed elbows bend in very deep. All of the hands sit on a wrist peg, which hinges and allows for hand rotation. The torso has both upper and lower diaphragm joints which increase the range of crunches, pivot and torso tilting. What is really nice is that the new design hides the gaps in the back when the figure is in a crouched position. SHF also continues to utilize their unique leg and hip design, with the rotating "butt flaps." Here is where I have the biggest problem. The left leg on mine is rather loose. Previously, I could split the legs out and have access to the joints to add some friction material and tighten the joint up. The design that SHF uses now actually encloses the joints, making it difficult to work on them. In spite of that, the legs work beautifully. Both will kick foward very high, can split out to the sides and have fantastic upper thigh rotation. The knees are double-jointed and can bend into the point of heel to backside contact. The ankles are on a hinge which allows for some up and down movement. The ankle pivot is good enough and the toe pivot works, though mine are loose as well. Even with the loose joints, I'm able to get Spider-Man into some terrific poses and they will hold for the most part. But... the loose joints are going to cost him a couple of points, bringing the rating down to a 7 out of 10 for articulation.
I pre-ordered the Bandai/Tamashii Nations SHFiguarts No Way Home Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man from BBTS for the retail price of $94.99. Though this is pricey, the fact that he comes with some great accessories, including those fantastic Tobey Maguire head sculpts really helps make it worth the price. Because of issues surrounding the use of Andrew Garfield's likeness, the forthcoming Amazing Spider-Man will be retailing for about $75 and will not come with unmasked head sculpts. I feel that will be a fair price as well. We are paying for quality though and I would have liked to have a figure with tighter engineering for the price I paid, so keeping that in mind, I'll give this figure a 7 out of 10 for affordability.
Overall, this version has been a long time coming and is really great to have in hand. For the most part, I'm really happy with this and aside from the few issues I had, definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a solid Tobey Maguire Spider-Man figure. With that, the Bandai/Tamashii Nations SHFiguarts Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man earns an overall rating of:
8 out of 10 ToyBoxes!
There you have it! As always, I am very grateful that you've chosen to take some time out of your day to check out my reviews. Until next time... GEEK OUT!!!