Popular culture really is all about timing. In the wrong year, nobody cares - in the 1990s Friends made reference to Gandalf as if it were some sort of secret nerd code word, and now everybody knows the wizard. Similarly Drax has been around forever, and this isn't even his first rodeo in Marvel Legends - until recently his original comic-inspired figures were marked down on Amazon and collecting dust at Toys R Us, and now they're creeping back up to more or less sensible prices. The movie Guardians of the Galaxy basically acted as a Star Wars-level pop culture event where everybody took notice of this group of hitherto obscure Marvel characters, proving that yes, we'll see anything with the word Marvel on it if Marvel Studios puts it out. (Sorry, Sony Ghost Rider movies.)
While comic book superheroes tend to be criticized for their beefy proportions, the physique of one Dave Bautista is probably about as perfect a fit as you can get for this guy. He's huge, and his figure is similarly oversized with massive red skin decoration that's even more ornate than the comic books. (You may also recall Mr. Bautista as Brass Body from The Man with the Iron Fists.) His figure has working storage for his two knives in his boots, plus they fit nicely in his two bend-and-swivel hands. The figure has a whopping 26 points of articulation and, unlike many big figures, has zero problems sitting down. This is, to say the least, impressive! He's also far more ripped than the comic version of Drax released earlier.
The head sculpt is Batista-esque, with the thick neck and menacing glare of the wrestler coming through the green plastic nicely. It's not a perfect representation, but it's quite good and it succeeds in duplicating the personality of the actor - no small feat. The figure stands nicely and his outfit - which I believe is from the end of the movie's final, obligatory take on the Death Star attack - sports brown pants with lots of straps and folds. The boots are similarly dangerous looking, and the figure's muscular build is broken up with articulation about as well as any flesh can be - it's decent, but that's an area that may remain elusive. With ab crunches and those swell rocker ankles this figure gives you the kind of range of movement you would've killed for back in the early 2000s, at about 3-4 times the price. The only real downfall is that the connective tissue feels a little more rubbery as time goes on with Hasbro's Marvel Legends - this has an unintentional benefit of making it easier for Drax the Destroyer to more easily hold the giant gun packaged with Rocket (sold separately).
I find it amazing how the movie transformed an existing dud into a beloved pop culture icon, but I guess I shouldn't - we've seen Transformers comic books do the same thing many times before. Once people meet these characters they tend to love them, and Guardians' team did a fantastic job in selling us all on one simple idea: that we will indeed shell out $120 just to put together a Groot figure. Drax is worth it, even without the Groot elements. Should you find one in your travels, he's definitely one of the better overall releases in this line.
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