With the new Avengers Age of Ultron movie comes a raft of exciting merchandise including some new mini figure superheroes to add to the Marvel classics of Iron Man and Hulk, who still hasn’t mastered that anger management malarky
There’s big business in licensed merchandise and this one plugs happily two biggies: Lego meets Marvel. For fans of both, what could be better mash-up?
This 248-piece set is reasonably quick-build so your child can get down to the business of action play swiftly. Starring Marvel stalwarts, Iron Man and He of the green flesh and bulging biceps, the set also includes the newest member of the Avengers’ gang, Wanda AKA Scarlet Witch.
The collectible mini figures are always irresistible, especially when their teensy heads swivel to reveal different facial expressions from angry gritted teeth and crazy eyebrows to smiley. We especially love Iron Man’s flip-up mask and goaty beard
The Iron Mech – the Hulk Buster – is the star of the show, and will gain plaudits from fans of Lego Bionicles. The drama echoes action of the movie – when Scarlet Witch is a baddie who has trapped Hulk in a prison and is ready to strike him with an electrical bolt should he try to escape.
Fortunately, Iron Man is on hand to do what he does best: come to the rescue with theatrical pizzazz. Just pop Iron Man mini figure in the cockpit of the humungous Hulk Buster suit – better make sure he’s got his ‘gggrrrr’ grimace on – and he is poised to stomp in and save the day.
The Hulk Buster is great for action play. It has excellent maneuverability, with moveable arms and legs to strike fearsome battle poses and grab the villain with his powerful hands and moving ‘gripping’ hands. The Hulk figure, on the other, has limited movement – though this didn’t bother our 10-year-old tester.
Hulk only has one stance – albeit a suitably angry one – and although his arms are moveable, his legs aren’t. Unlike the mini figs in the set, Hulk only has his angry expression. We couldn’t help wishing fthere was a diddy Bruce Banner mini fig lurking within, but alas there isn’t.
Iron Man also has a snazzy sounding ‘Super Jumper’. In reality, it’s a simple piece of plastic folded over to give ‘bounce’. We were impressed how well the Iron Man mini figure would fly through the air, though you do have to get it just right for maximum propulsion. It also doubles as a display stand, where it looks like Iron Man is floating on air.
Newbie Scarlet Witch has the power of telekinesis and is able to use her power to fire neurons in people’s brains remotely and manipulate their minds. In Lego terms, her powerful ‘hex spheres’ translate to having round red bricks attached to her hands and scary red eyes to accompany her ‘crazy’ face (her other face is all pouty lips and fluttering eyelashes).
Fun fact Scarlet Witch has a twin brother, Quicksilver, who also appears in Avengers Age of Ultron. Scarlet Witch’s first Marvel comic book appearance was in X-Men #4, where she was introduced as the daughter of arch villain, Magneto. Initally a villain who was a member of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver later fought on the side of good, aligning themselves with The Avengers.
Did you know? The Hulk Buster is an iconic piece of Iron Man tech, much loved by Marvel geeks. The Hulk Buster Armour was developed by Tony Stark and Bruce Banner (Hulk’s mild-manners alter ego), after they studied Hulk’s physical actions and strength levels to help him develop anger management strategies. A satellite in low orbit is always around Banner and at a moment’s notice Stark can deploy the Hulk Buster armour, hop in and halt Hulk in his tracks— that’s the theory, anyway.
Good For… fine motor dexterity; hand/eye coordination, and manipulation; coordination; communication skills; vocabulary; listening; following instruction; problem solving; imaginary play; story telling and role playing.
Keep in Mind… This is a mid-price set from a collection that includes several sets from smaller starter sets like Iron Man vs Ultron (£15.50) to the large-scale The Avengers Quintet City Chase that includes one of the iconic Quintet supership. Inevitably, kids often want to collect all the superhero mini figures – so if your child wants Thor and his hammer, you might get pestered to buy Avengers Hydra Showdown which includes Thor, Hawkeye and Hydra henchman. Quicksilver mini figure comes with the Hydra Fortress Smash set.
What Kids Love This will have instant pull for fans of Marvel Avengers. It also makes it accessible to a younger audience (from 7+) than The Age of Ultron movie which has a certificate of 12A.
What Parents Love Lego is a perennial favourite with enduring appeal. This set is a straight forward build with plenty of fun features and moveable parts to extend play value.
Designer Details Founded in Denmark by Ole Kirk Kristiansen in 1932, Lego (an abbreviation of the two Danish words “leg godt”, meaning “play well”) is arguably the most iconic toy brand ever. Twice named “Toy of the Century”, the famous Lego brick, with its distinctive interlocking system, was first launched in 1958. Although Lego is ostensibly a brand for children, there are many AFOLs (Adult Fans Of Lego) including Brad Pitt, David Beckham and WillIAm.