Marvel Legends Jean Grey (Jim Lee 90’s Variant Figure) Review

When Hasbro announced the return of Marvel Legends figures, there was perhaps no character I heard more requests (and begging) for than a 90’s style Jim Lee Jean Grey figure. Well, it’s taken until Wave 5, but the Marvel Legends Jean Grey Jim Lee variant has arrived! Unfortunately, even if expectations hadn’t been so sky-high for this figure, I still think that poor Jean would be considered a disappointment…

Marvel Legends Jean Grey 90s Jim Lee Variant Action Figure

  The Right:

Let’s start out with a colossal-sized “Right” that absolutely cannot be overlooked: Hasbro has finally released an official Marvel Legends Jean Grey Jim Lee 90’s variant action figure. Fans have demanded this figure since the Toybiz Marvel Legends days, and finally their dream has come true. Whatever flaws this figure may have (and trust me, I’ll get to them), it’s downright heavenly to know that the core Marvel Legends X-Men are one step closer to completion (and will be even closer when the Marvel Legends Jubilee Series comes out later this year!).

I grew up on the 1990s X-Men cartoon series, so this is the iconic look for Jean Grey, so far as I’m concerned (pouches and all). I was very pleased to see that Hasbro added the pouches to Jean Grey’s legs, as they’re such an important part of Jim Lee’s Jean Grey character design (I’m bummed that Hasbro didn’t add the blue pouches to Jean’s biceps as well, but I’m willing to let that slide).

Return of Marvel Legends Jean Grey Figure BackThe other detail of this Hasbro Marvel Legends Jean Grey figure’s sculpting that I think is a real knockout is the sculpting work on Jean’s hair. The hair has its problems with weight and paint deco, but the huge, flowing hair looks spots-on to the source material of the 1990’s Jean Grey.

2013 Marvel Legends Jean Grey Wave 5 Figure Jim Lee 1990's VariantMarvel Legends Wave 5 Jean Grey’s right hand is sculpted as an open palm, so you can easily imagine that she’s performing a telekinetic force push or something of the sort–a nice character-specific choice to demonstrate Jean Grey’s psychic powers. Jean’s left hand is sculpted as a closed fist (which is sort of weird, as I don’t think Jean Grey was likely to win a fistfight with anybody in the Marvel universe).

Jim Lee Jean Grey Marvel Legends Figure 2013 Rocket Raccoon SeriesThe Marvel Legends Jean Grey Jim Lee variant figure has a decent amount of articulation, but the most revolutionary addition to the figure’s articulation scheme is her new ankle rockers on her feet. Earlier Marvel Legends females like the Wave 2 Madame Hydra and Madame Masque figures really suffered from not having ankle rocker joints, so I’m thrilled to see them integrated into the Jean Grey action figure (and a good thing, too–Jean wouldn’t be able to stand at all without them).

Hasbro’s paint department did an outstanding job with the paint deco on Jean Grey’s costume, which has flawless pain apps on it. I particularly love the shiny blue metallic paint with swirls in it chosen for the blue portions of the costume–they really pop and make the figure’s outfit shine.

Marvel Legends Rocket Raccoon Series Jean Grey Figure with Rocket Raccoon PartsThe 6″ Jean Grey Marvel Legends figure comes with two accessories: the tail and body of Rocket Raccoon. Not the most riveting (or character-specific) accessories, but I very much adore the Marvel Legends Rocket Raccoon Build-A-Figure I reviewed earlier this month, so I’m glad the wave includes the pieces to make him.

2013 Marvel Legends Jean Grey CardbackThe Wrong:

I know a lot of people are going to hate me for griping (a lot) about this Marvel Legends Jim Jean Grey figure, but there’s a whole lot wrong with this figure that really bothers me.

Many of the deficiencies with this Jean Grey Marvel Legends figure have to do with the figure’s head. What’s wrong with it? Well, a) Jean Grey is supposed to be a redhead and not a brunette; b) Jean Grey is supposed to have a gorgeous face and this figure does not; and c) Jean Grey’s hair sculpt is incredibly heavy and restricting.

Marvel Legends Jean Grey and Hope Summers Figure ComparisonFirst, let’s talk about Jean’s hair color: it’s wrong. Sorry, but Jean Grey does not have this auburn-hued hair. Hope Summers is supposed to be the spitting image of Jean, and the Marvel Legends Wave 1 Hope Summers figure has very red hair–as she should. The Marvel Legends Wave 5 Jean Grey action figure’s hair is far too brown by comparison, and it just doesn’t look right.

And since we’re talking about the Hope Marvel Legends figure, I might as well talk about her face. The Hope Summers action figure’s face looks soft, pretty and youthful. Meanwhile, 2013 Marvel Legends Jean Grey’s face looks sort of haggardly in comparison. Jean isn’t the horrible-looking wench that the Wave 2 Madame Hydra figure was, but she certainly isn’t the attractive woman she’s legendary for being either.

Marvel Legends Jean Grey Jim Lee 90's Variant 2013 Series 2 Wave 5 Rocket RaccoonThe Marvel Legends Jean Grey 90’s variant also suffers from its hair sculpting. As fantastic as the sculpt of the hair is, it greatly limits Jean’s head articulation–she can barely look up or side to side at all, which hugely restricts the potential poses for the figure. And the sheer weight of the Marvel Legends 2013 Jean Grey figure’s hair makes her top-heavy and causes getting her posed to stand stably a real chore.

My Jean Grey Jim Lee variant’s legs and knee joints are loose and floppy, and get worse the more I try to stand Jean up. I don’t know if the joint strength is deteriorating from being moved or the weight of trying to hold up her head, but getting Jean into any kind of cool poses that she can stand up in is well and truly a pain.

Marvel Legends Jim Lee Jean Grey Figure Loose BeltAnd I’ll use the subject of things that are a pain to segue into discussing the Marvel Legends 2013 Jean Grey figure’s belt. Basically, it looks good in the same shiny blue paint as her costume, but it’s far too loose and flops around endlessly. It makes me totally insane when Hasbro can’t be bothered to make costume accessories tight enough, and it constantly irritates me trying to force Jean Grey’s X-Men belt to stay in place where it’s supposed to instead of sliding all over the place.

Marvel Legends Jim Lee Jean Grey Variant Action Figure on Marvel Select Nightcrawler BaseFinally, I wish Hasbro had given the Jim Lee Jean Grey Marvel Legends 6″ figure some true accessories (beyond the Rocket Raccoon Build-A-Figure pieces). This figure is lacking in fun due to the slim number of poses Jean can take on, but some telekinetic effects pieces or a psychic display stand or something would have made Jean feel like a much more complete figure. I gave mine the display base from the Marvel Select Nightcrawler figure I reviewed in the spring, and Jean looks a whole lot better off because of it.

Marvel Legends 2013 Series 2 Jean Grey Figure 1990s Jim Lee Variant“Where Can I Buy It?!”

Thus far the Marvel Legends 2013 Series 2 cases have online shown up through online and specialty stores, where Jean Grey is among the most popular figures. You can get the whole set of Marvel Legends Wave 5 from BigBadToyStore for a fair price of $99.99, but they’re sold out of individual figures of Jean Grey.

If you don’t want all five figures in the Marvel Legends Rocket Raccoon Series and just want Jean herself, the only place I’m seeing the 90’s Marvel Legends Jean Grey variant sold for under $30 with any frequency is on ebay.

Overall: From the immense amount of complaining I did about this Jim Lee Marvel Legends Jean Grey variant action figure, you might think I really, truly hate this figure. I don’t. Hasbro did some great decisions with this figure such as the pouches on her legs, the paints chosen for her costume and the much-needed ankle rockers added to her feet. But I’m not blind to all of the deficiencies that this 6″ Marvel Legends Jim Lee Jean Grey figure has either (and there are a lot of them). Be it the lack of accessories, top-heaviness of the figure due to her hair, limited posing potential or the wrong-colored hair, this figure has a whole lot of drawbacks to overcome. I’m glad to finally own an official Marvel Legends Jean Grey 1990’s Jim Lee action figure, but I really do wish she was better than she is.



Marvel Legends Jean Grey (Jim Lee 90’s Variant Figure) Review — 4 Comments

  1. I agree,
    I got the figure, was pretty happy but I walk around the house for hours with my new figures, posing them and testing the joints and just seeing how they stand and how they compare to other versions and other figures.
    The longer I played around with Jean the more little things about her bugged me. At first it was the top heavy-ness of her hair, but more and more the face bugged me. The jaw line seems to angular, while the cheek bones seem poorly drawn, amatuer-ish. Not gaunt… simply not right, they’re not like a humans and it becomes distracting.

    I’m going back and forth on whether to even address this (I don’t want to sound like a perv) but her other “proportions” are also off. I don’t like how women get portrayed in comic books with the ever expanding bust line, I find it embarrassing as a comic fan… and while I don’t think jean is defined by this characteristic, the features on the figure are off from any comic representation… but also just seem weird for a human (not unlike the cheek bones). I don’t know if it’s simply a size issue, or just a robotically unrealistic presentation. But it makes the figure seem less human and more like a chunk of plastic. Which becomes forgettable.

    C- is pretty appropriate.

  2. I agree with most of this, but the face its actually right, I remember when I got Jean Grey for the old figures in the last classics line, she has the right face, just like in the cartoon, see this picture
    She is very correct in the face, the hair color is weird, and the belt its wrong too, she should have a force field as an accesorie.
    About the fist hand, she is actually doing that in a lot of arts, its a some kind of reflect for her psychic power take a look in this pictures

    I think even after all the flaws, I wish I have a Jean Grey just like this in the old figures, this is way better than the old ones.

  3. I love this figure for what it is…a JIM LEE Designed figure. However I agree the proportions don’t seem right. Jean should be shorter and a bit “Fuller” in the breast and hips. I’m excited about the new Phoenix figure and I hope her proportions are better…even though she will have the same heavy hair.

  4. Not only are you 100% correct in your assessment of this Jean Grey figure, I’m a little surprised that you didn’t include a critique of the card art. The brilliant art of Terry Dodson was butchered somewhere down the line before the card was printed. Look at the outside edges of her torso: they don’t conform to the shape of her breasts at all. Also, while her left hand looks “okay” on the front of the card, her right hand on the card back is pathetic! Dodson is owed an apology by whomever is responsible!