See what I did there?
Y’know, I gotta tell you. There’s something really weird about seeing Frank Castle all done up in Mego style. I mean, the guy’s a stone-cold killer and Megos are emblematic of a much simpler time in the action-figure world.
Sure you had the Joker and Green Goblin, but those were bad guys and, well, that seemed OK. But the Punisher?
How delightfully subversive it is then, that Diamond Select’s latest Mego-style set — due 7/26 — features the World’s Darkest Superhero.
Diamond started producing these sets a couple years ago, starting with Spider-Man. They’ve since reproduced some of the most popular Marvel Mego figures from the ’70s, such as Captain America and Thor, as well as characters that never got the treatment, like Daredevil, Wolverine and Deadpool. (What a weird coincidence that they keep producing bloody antiheroes — or is it?!)
Anyway, the Punisher set — which lists for $80 — comes with the standard tray with the requisite window box, single body, multiple outfits and interchangeable heads and hands.
You get your classic Amazing Spider-Man #129 version, with his white go-go boots; a Frank Castle “civilian” guise; and a modern Punisher outfit. And guns! Lots of guns! (Past releases included a historical booklet but there’s none here.)
Unlike other companies that produce Mego-style figures, the body is well-constructed and even a little hefty, easily holding its pose. The clothes fit well so changing them is a bit of a challenge but, y’know, what more do you want? These sets, which are produced in concert with EMCE, are outstanding.
I do have a beef, however: It’s very hard to keep the tray in nice shape given the way the accoutrements are fastened to the bottom. I’m not sure what the solution is but it’s an ongoing issue for hardcore collectors. That said, it’s not something I personally lose sleep over. Just so long as that window box remains nice and sharp — love the blood-red color of the packaging, by the way — I’m cool.
At Toy Fair, Diamond showed off a variant Deadpool set but nothing’s been announced beyond that. Hopefully sales of the Punisher are strong enough to keep the line going — only a few of these are released a year.
Personally, I’d love to see Green Goblin and Iron Man, both of which would lend themselves well to the three-outfit treatment. (Spidey needs a villain, guys!)
In the meantime, Mego Batman can explain to Mego Punisher that killing’s not the answer.