Marvel Crossovers Hulk (Tank) Toy Review

in 2008, Action Figure Review, Marvel Transformers

Marvel Crossovers

General Information:
Release Date: October 2008
Price Point: $15.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: None

Images:

Official images from Hasbrotoyshop.com

When Doctor Bruce Banner was accidentally exposed to a high concentration of Gamma Rays, his life was forever altered. Whenever he becomes enraged, he changes into the fierce being known as The Hulk, one of the most powerful heroes in the Avengers line up. This made him a natural choice to become one of the earliest Marvel Crossovers figures to be released in 2008.

Vehicle Mode:
When you think about The Hulk, you think of sheer, raw power so the choice of a tank was no surprise for The Hulk's vehicle. It is important to make the distinction that this vehicle does not represent Hulk himself, but rather a vehicle he is driving and controls. Like the Hulk himself however, this vehicle is big, thick and dangerous looking. Hulk appears to transform into an "H" tank with the tread sections out on the sides with a gap in the front and back in the middle (though I admit the gap in the front is relatively small). For a more "obvious" H tank take a look at Armada Megatron.

Since this is meant to be more of a science fiction tank than a real life one, there is a mix of elements that are seen on real tanks while others are more fantasy oriented. One of the things that impresses me about this sculpt is the consistent use of sections raised in different directions. Towaqrds the front for instance there are vent-like panels raised at a slight angle near the front of the tank turret. Towards the back are angled sections with circles sculpted into them representing rivets. Running along the sides are shapes including triangles and circles providing detail above the highly detailed looking treads which look almost like a series of gears inside an old style clock. Other cool details include turret windows in the front, tubes on the side sof the turret and tube shaped lights in the front of each tread section. Take a look at the front end of the vehicle on the right side and you'll see a small crater sculpted into the front, meaning someone managed to actually damage Hulk's armor! I like how this is an asymmetrical design. His turret is designed with a sci-fi looking cannon that resembles a flattened diamond, not a shape you see in real life (that I know of). It's a great looking sculpt and I love the detail and sense of power it conveys.

Hulk's tank is cast in colors meant to evoke his classic appearances. The first and primary color is of course green, which also works with the military theme of the vehicle. His treads and part of the vehicle's back end are cast in a shade of gunmetal, giving him a nice, metallic look. Paint applications have been done in silver, black and gold. The gold and black are used for detailing on the figure including the raised vent sections on the turret and the turret windows. Smaller silver and black details line the edge of the figure as well. The gold is also boldly used on the sides of the treads. Overall it's nice paint job and I was surprised to see many of the tinier sculpted details painted.

Aside from rolling on four small wheels on the bottom of the treads, there is no functionality here to speak of. The turret doesn't turn due to the design of the transformation. This is a bit of a bummer, but it is still a cool vehicle to imagine the green behemoth piloting.

Transformation to Vehicle Mode:

  1. Separate the middle section of the treads from the main body of the tank, they swing out to the sides but spring back - no worries, the key here is to separate the two tread sections from the vehicle's middle area.
  2. Swing the turret up and back, straightening out what will become the robot legs.
  3. Separate the turret in half.
  4. Swing the top and bottom halves of the turret ends away from each other to begin forming the robot feet.
  5. Swing the "toe" pieces out on the front foot piece.
  6. Push the heel piece (aka the front halves of the cannon) in.
  7. Swing the waist section on its central hinge and connect the two pegs on it into the holes on the central section of the vehicle.
  8. Extend each lower leg down slightly.
  9. On the top of the robot flip up the robot head and then swing down the green panel that was behind it.
  10. On each arm/tread section swing the middle panel on the tread sections down.
  11. Swing the middle panel that forms the middle area of the treads out and then around and fold it around the forearm (two holes on the panel will match up with two pegs on the forearm.
  12. Pull each of the shoulder sections out and swing them around so the tread sections now face forward.
  13. Push each forearm up.
  14. At the end of each arm swing up the small panel that forms part of the tread details to reveal the robot hands.
  15. Swing each of the robot thumbs up.

Robot Mode:
Just as his tank's vehicle mode conveys destructive power in its appearance, the robot mode does the same with its massive appearance. The Hulk mech's upper body is gigantic. The chest and the tread panels that form part of the shoulders were already wide, but with the tread/shoulder sections swung out it gets even wider. Now add on very stocky looking legs and gigantic fists and this is not a robot you want to mess with! I love the overall shape and bulk of the figure, it looks great and definitely has some heft to it.

Many of Hulk's parts are designed with a purely robotic being in midn. His arms are mostly made up of sections formed from the treads, so it's natural they'll look mechanical. His aist and legs for the most part are very robotic looking elements with little connection to the organic being inside (other than their sheer bulk). There are however some details which definitely take influence from The Hulk himself:

  • The robot head is modeled after The Hulk's own head design, stressing the "Frankenstein monster" aspect of the character's appearance. This includes thick brow ridges, hair that comes to points down on the brow and even circles on the sides of the head reminscent of the electrodes seen sticking out of some old versions of Frankenstein.
  • The chest design has sculpting that clearly looks like pectoral muscles and the "abdominal" area has what look like segments of a "six pack" on the top.
  • The Hulk mech's feet have panels with ten "toes" sculpted in the front down to small rectangles inside representing "toe nails".

These design touches not only help connect the Hulk mech to its pilot but it also is amusing to think about a mech that has toes complete with "toe nails" and a section of faux "hair" on top. I think the robot mode looks fantastic.

The same colors from the vehicle mode carry over here, but this time they're much more mixed up. His chest, arms, lower legs and head are mostly green, but other sections in between such as his waist and fingers are gunmetal. In between all those details are painted areas including gold on the head and legs as well as the arms thanks to carry over details from the treads. He even has some gold and black details on his chest in the form of a curved cover around some vents. The "hair" on the mech's head is painted black while its eyes and teeth are white. The brow that his "hair" drapes over is painted silver. This paint deco is quite intricate and I love how much the paint details help to bring out the sculpted details in several areas. Very well done.

The Hulk mech has an impressive twenty six points of articulation. This includes seven points of articulation in each arm and five in each leg. Most impressive is that this articulation even includes joints on his hands for the thumb and fingers. Normally I count articulation as joints that can be positioned in a particular pose, however in this case there are some extra points of movement that don't quite fit this category. As if to emphasize the Hulk's own brute methods, the Hulk mech is designed with the ability to turn at the waist, but with a mechanism that allows the joint to turn back quickly and automatically. Once upon a time this was done with pieces of rubberin the figure, I'm not quite ready to dissect my figure to find out what's inside but it works brilliantly. A similar type of joint is on the shoulder joint, allowing you to simulate a punching/swing motion. It's a really fun feature and I dig it. It's super unusual for a Transformer to have something like this so I loved seeing it here.

Final Thoughts:
In all honesty, the Hulk tank toy did not look terribly impressive to me in package. However, once I got him out I was impressed by the quality of the detail, transformation and play value. Highly recommended!