[EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is part of the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas, an ongoing Critical Missives Clix celebration wherein we’re trying to publish new content for 12 straight days. If you’ve missed anything, you can check out Night 1, Night 2, Night 3, Night 4, Night 5 or Night 6 just by clicking the preceding links!]
Welcome back to the 12 Nights of Clix-Mas!!
So, whenever WizKids announces a new set, everyone races to figure out exactly which characters will be making an appearance. They do this for a variety of reasons, but there’s a certain crowd that just wants to know how many characters are “getting Clix’d” for the first time. Well, there are only so many characters who have yet to be “Clix’d,” so eventually WizKids makes some characters that might have you scratching your head. Alternatively, sometimes they’ll prominently feature a character whose profile in the comics is marginal at best.
Well, tonight, we’re gonna take a look at the 10 Clix that actually got made this year that I, well, REALLY was not expecting.
In order of appearance…
10. SLOSH048 Tellus: I’ll be honest–I didn’t even remember this guy at first. Even for the Legion, he’s kind of weird. But what really gets me is not only did he get a figure this set, his figure was so good that he showed up on the first Watchlist and had to be slightly nerfed (even though the figure that really made him go, Astral Dr. Strange, rotated out… ). When folks talk about the Legion of Superheroes, they’re usually talking about characters like Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, Triplicate Girl or even (God help us) Matter-eater Lad. They usually don’t mean the weird yellow member with the toadstools on his back that can talk with his mind.
9. SLOSH050 Toyman: I’m not surprised that he was on the roster for SLOSH; that much seems perfectly reasonable. But the way they made him sort of the premier Super Rare of the set, what with his supporting Toy figures and all–that’s what really surprised me. And the fact that all his toys can attach to him is kind of cool. But then, after getting everyone all excited about his mechanics via their preview section WizKids went and made sure that he kind of really sucks for his points, which really goes the extra mile in making this piece a perplexing headscratcher.
8. CATWS014 Agent Sitwell: Full disclosure: I love Movie Clix, particularly Marvel Cinematic Universe Clix. I get the same sense of anticipation watching characters debut in the MCU that I did back when the Ultimate universe wasn’t such a huge mess and they “Ultimate-tized” a different Marvel staple character every other month. So if there’s a Marvel Movie set on the release schedule, you can bet I’ll be at Target waiting for them to unbox the cases.
There was some talk leading into Cap 2 that Sitwell would sort of become the new Coulson, which is to say that he’d be the new S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent who would act as the connective tissue between all the MCU movies. Even then, at the most, I thought we might see ol’ Jasper here show up as a crappy Common in some far-off Avengers: Age of Ultron set (MILD SPOILER ALERT FOR AN 8-MONTH OLD MOVIE: Don’t think Sitwell will be making any more MCU appearances, so he won’t be showing up in A: AoU!).
Instead, he was an important Target (read: Mass Market) Exclusive Rare piece that is actually really useful on S.H.I.E.L.D. teams (surprise surprise) as a Perplexin’, Sidestepin’ support piece–arguably the best S.H.I.E.L.D. support piece in Modern not named Brother Voodoo (who’s really more of a Secondary Attacker anyway). Was not expecting that!
But what I really found bizarre is that his sculpt is pretty close to the picture above–just Sitwell standing there, holding his coffee mug. A somewhat strange–but not unwelcome–addition to the MCU roster of figures!
7. DP001 Headpool & 6. DP003 Dogpool: Okay, honestly, most of the Deadpool Corps could have made this list, but I really thought we might see Kidpool at some point, and Lady Deadpool was almost a given. But freakin’ Dogpool?! And Headpool–not that people didn’t like that character, but he’s a disembodied head–how do you make that in Clix form? I would have thought he would end up as some sort of Bystander Token. Instead, he’s a pretty important support piece for a variety of Meta Builds.
And freakin’ Dogpool is almost as good–maybe just a tad bit overcosted. But definitely useful, especially with the right Word Balloons. The only weirder Deadpool Corps. member would have been Championpool, but we didn’t get him. At least, not yet.
5. DP040 Doctor Bong: I mean, really? We really got this guy this year? This actually happened, and we’re all cool with it? Even in a set called Deadpool, this was pretty amazing. I guess I really shouldn’t have been surprised. What’s really crazy is that ol’ Doc Bong is actually kind of sneaky-good for his points! Running Shot Pulse Wave (even with a 9 Attack) is really good, and he’s actually got a support dial (with access to Outwit and Perplex!). Bizarre character, bizarre power-set; just a really weird package.
4. DP104 Cosmic X-23: X-23? Not my favorite character, but sure. She’s pretty popular. I get it. She would not be out of place in a Deadpool set. But Cosmic X-23?! Whaaa… ? Of all the characters who have ever been Captain Universe, X-23 is the one WizKids gives us (I realize we’ve gotten a few in the past, but c’mon!). Her 100 Point dial is insane–not insanely good, or insanely bad, just insane as in “it seems like this was designed by someone not right in the head.” The 275 Point dial is good, not great, but it looks like a lot of fun at least.
3. GOTG041 Deathurge: As a big GLA fan, this one kind of tickled my funny bone. At some point around the end of GLA: Misassembled, Doorman was killed, but he was brought back by an entity named Oblivion to serve as his avatar Deathurge! That’s what this figure is, complete with the GLA keyword. I really love that this figure exists in Modern; I just never thought we’d see it! Incidentally, Deathurge finally gives GLA Themed Teams a Primary Attacker (not the best, but he has multiple options for dealing penetrating damage and still, 1 option is better than 0 options).
2. GOTG061 Skrull: The Zombie Chase no one asked for! This character is so crappy I couldn’t even find a decent image of him; instead, you get a random Zombie-ish looking Skrull who’s impersonating Reed Richards for some reason. This character is the only Zombie Chase who’s not Unique–you can play as many of these crappy Zombies as you want! Yay!!
Why this wasn’t a Chase Zombie Thanos, I have no idea. Biggest waste of a Chase slot I can think of…
1. FL053B Zoom: Okay, this one is kind of a cheat. If you’d asked me coming into this year if I thought we’d see a Black Lantern Zoom, I’d have said yes, so I can’t say that this character was completely unexpected. However, I would have bet dollars to donuts that he’d have come in the War of Light OP Expansion. The fact that we got him in Flash came as a complete shocker to me. A pleasant shocker (eeeewwww), since I managed to pull one. But a shocker (okay, I’ll stop now) nonetheless.
Okay! Those were my Top Ten most unexpected figures from 2014! What were yours? Feel free to post ’em in the Comments section below.
And be back here tomorrow night for Night Eight of the Twelve Nights of Clix-mas. Hmmm… might be time for a Weekly Roundup…