Tuesday, October 19, 2010

REVIEW: Iron Man 2's Silver Centurion

This is the first armor suit designed purely for combat by Tony Stark.  It began as a prototype on which the technical genius could try out new ideas but grew to be the toughest, most powerful IRON MAN version to date.  Stocked with weaponry and stronger than any other suit before the SILVER CENTURION became an instant classic of armor technology.

Does the Silver Centurion stand-up to closer inspection?  And who wrote the terrible pack blurb?  Read on and we'll see if we can answer at least one of those questions...

80s Classic!  80s Classic!
Iron Man - as I'm sure everybody who's ever seen the comics or the movies - has, over the years, worn a variety of different costumes.  Just look at the Iron Man 2 toy line and you'll see a number of these costumes - both from the comic and movies - have been released over the last year or so and Wave 3 finally included this 80s classic.

The Silver Centurion armour (first being unveiled in Iron Man #200) was something of a departure for Iron Man, with the familiar red and gold colour scheme being ditched in favour of a red and silver look (hence the name.)  The armour also included some changes to the basic costume, too, including the first appearance (I believe) of the triangular chest beam and a radical redesign of the costume's back piece (see below.)

So that's the history lesson done.  What about the figure itself?

The Silver Centurion
Firstly, let's look at the joints.  The Silver Centurion suit uses the ball-joint hips (hooray!) which I've always been a fan of since I first saw them.  I like the fact that they allow wider stances than the peg-joint and don't have the leg-holes associated with that joint.  They're nice and tight, but without being immovable.  The figure holds poses very well and each leg - for example - can easily hold the figure upright (as shown here.)

What's not so great are the shoulder pads: they restrict the vertical positioning of the arms, limiting them to shoulder height.  It's not that the pads aren't jointed - they are.  They're just very femmer.  The arm joint in theory will move above shoulder height, but I simply didn't want to risk snapping the shoulder pads off in the process.

As for the molding, it's an excellent representation of the armour.  It's chunky, very retro in a 1980s fashion and has some nice details.  The eye and mouth slots, for example, give the impression of real holes (although I never understood why Iron Man's armour had holes in it...) and there are some nice details on the cuffs.  One minor point is the neck joint - the Silver Centurion figure is a bit of a pencil-neck.  It's not always noticeable but in certain head positions, you can see how thin the support is.

Sadly the cast suffers from some hard molding lines, though, especially on the limbs.  It's a shame, as the gauntlets, for example, have some great sectional detail and the figure's silhouette is a superb match of the comicbook design.

There are also some minor problems with the paint job.  The face is fairly crisp but the gauntlet edges are a little messy if you look closely.  However, this is only really noticeable at certain angles and only if you're really looking for it.

It's the standard Iron Man 2 blister-pack, which affords a good view of the figure within.  I just wish they'd use unique artwork on the card though, as flipping through dozens of identical Iron Man illustrations when the figures are on a wall spike can be tedious.

The Silver Centurion comes with the snap-on Repulsor Blast, stand and three Armour Cards: the standard Iron Man 2 figure set.

Final Thoughts
The Silver Centurion is actually a surprisingly fun figure and much more than I expected.  I picked him up simply because he was going for $5 (I'm guessing some places are discounting their backstock of figures for Christmas) and I'm very happy with my purchase.

The main Marvel Universe line includes a figure they refer to as The Silver Centurion (Wave 5 #033) which I'd seen, picked-up, considered then put back.   Why?  Because it appears simply to be a recolour of the modern Iron Man costume, not the Silver Centurion I remembered.  This figure, on the other hand, is a completely new cast and looks as it should.

The retro-80s styling is awesome and the figure captures it perfectly.  The whole thing looks like the Rocketeer and has a goofy, somewhat awkward design to it.  And that's fine, because that's what the comicbook armour looked like.

The Silver Centurion armour is a very different-looking design to the other Iron Man suits and this figure not only captures that styling perfectly but is also a well-rounded figure in its own right.  Hasbro appear to be pushing the Comic Series (which is a good thing) and have announced that we'll be seeing the Mandarin and the (comicbook) Whiplash in the near future.  If they're of the same quality as this figure, then I'll be buying.

Production QualityB
Final ScoreB+

Image Gallery


  1. Cool stuff. I almost picked this figure up to go with the comic War Machine.

    Nice pics.

  2. Thanks. The comics War Machine is a pretty good figure, but it's poseability is a bit limited. I think the Silver Centurion is certainly one of the better Iron Man 2 figures.


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