Thursday, June 9, 2011

Captain America- James 'Bucky' Barnes Premium Format Figure from Sideshow Collectibles Review

Sideshow Collectibles is the best in the business in creating the greatest statues from Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Avatar, and Marvel. Their premiere line is the Premium Format figures that bring these statues to life with incredible detail, paint, accessories, and size. The Premium Format figures use real fabric for the costumes with a combination of high quality paints. The Premium Format figures usually come with two runs, a limited regular series and a very limited Sideshow Exclusive run, which includes art prints and/or head portraits or weapons. 

The newest Sideshow Collectibles Premium Format Figure that has begun shipping is the Captain America - James 'Bucky' Barnes Statue. The statue stands 25.5" from base to the top of his shield. 

Sideshow Collectibles always brings the best in their products, including the packaging. There are many collectors who refuse to open their action figures and want to just display them in their packages. This idea only works if the packaging is worth displaying. The display of the Captain America - Bucky box is terrific and could easily be displayed on its own without ever opening the box. There are many collectors though that want to display what is actually in the box and we want to make sure it is safely packaged to be assured it will not be damaged in the shipping process.  Sideshow Collectibles provides us with firm quality control and tightly packs the statues in strong styrofoam and materials that holds the pieces in place. 

Assembling of the Statue
The Captain America is definitely a large statue and highly detailed. The assembly of putting together a Sideshow Collectibles statue is fairly easy and includes as few pieces as possible. We of course had to start with the base that was the heaviest piece, and then moved on with the body, fully loaded utility belt, hands, shield, and head sculpt. It was very easy to put together except for placing the body on the base with the pegs. The materials are very good quality and really strong. The hands and head sculpt include strong magnets that make it easy to place on the body. 

Detail of the Statue
Wow, wow, wow, that is all I can say about how incredible the Sideshow Collectibles Captain America - James 'Bucky' Barnes Premium Statue is. The first piece we took out of the styrofoam was the base, which includes an amazing sculpture of an eagle in great silver paint along the very detailed brick building. Next piece to pull out again was the body, which is made of real leather like fabric from the legs up to his arms. The detail of the uniform to his boots is truly amazing. Then we have to talk about what is underneath the black leather like material, which is of course the iconic Captain America costume. The costume is painted with high quality paints and very shiny, which gives it an awesome look in the blues. The gun in his right hand and of course his "Shield" in his left raised high. The shield is also painted with the great paint that gives it that amazing shine. The head sculpt is amazing with great details in his eyes and the wings on his mask are great. 

Exclusive vs. Regular
The regular format of this figure included everything that we have talked about so far, while the Exclusive limited to only 550 added an extra head portrait of Bucky with the mask pulled back and a fine art print. The great thing about this exclusive was that it not only included the art print, but also the extra head portrait. Many exclusives have usually included just an art print or a extra accessory. The art print is incredible and something amazing in its self with a great picture of Red Skull on the bottom right. The exclusive head portrait is of Bucky with his mask being pulled back. The detail is unbelievable in this head sculpt from his hair to the mask wrinkling in the back of his neck. 

Overall Look and Specs
This statue is simply beautiful and a perfect addition for comic memorabilia. The combination of the real fabric costume with the amazing paint is a perfect match. The fully loaded utility belt is made of leather and it is truly life like with a knife, his gun holster, and extra pieces. The most important accessory for Captain America of course is his "Shield". The paint is incredible with that great glossy shine. We love both the head sculpts in the mask and without. Sideshow Collectibles always seems to amaze me with what they continue to do for their fans. The quality seems to continuously improve in their product and is it just me, or are the statues becoming bigger? I find the art print to be a great added bonus and we will definitely display it next to the Captain America. Surprisingly, the Regular Edition is still available and it is only limited to 1000. You will not be disappointed in this statue. We love it and thank you Sideshow!

Backstory to James 'Bucky' Barnes from Sideshow
As a young boy, James Buchanan Barnes lost his father and was adopted by Camp Lehigh as their mascot, nicknamed "Bucky". It was here that he learned the identity of Captain America, Steve Rogers, and underwent rigorous training to be Cap's sidekick, accompanying him on many adventures. They often worked with the original Invaders, but on a final mission against Baron Zemo, Bucky and Cap hopped on an experimental drone plane in an attempt to disarm a bomb. The bomb detonated, dropping Cap in the North Atlantic, where the Avengers would later find him. American forces never found Bucky's body, and he was presumed dead when in truth he had been found and revived by Russian General Vasily Karpov. 

When Bucky awoke, he had no memory of his identity, which gave Karpov an opportunity to reprogram Bucky as a Soviet assassin called the Winter Soldier. He was sent all across the globe, committing political assassinations with huge effects on the Cold War. His memory implantation caused mental instability, however, and he was kept in stasis between missions to prevent rebellion. Later, the Winter Soldier kidnapped S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Sharon Carter, who told Captain America upon her rescue that she believed her captor to be Bucky. Later, Nick Fury confirmed to Cap that the Winter Soldier was indeed his former partner.

When Lukin ordered the Winter Soldier to bury the Cosmic Cube in an underground bunker, Cap tracked him down and defeated him. After the battle, Cap used the Cosmic Cube to restore Bucky's memories, but Bucky then destroyed the Cube and disappeared. All but Captain America believed him to be dead, but Bucky later resurfaced and aided Wolverine in escaping Weapon X. 

When the Superhuman Registration Act was passed, S.H.I.E.L.D's Nick Fury recruited Bucky for covert operations, so as to protect Captain America from government forces. In the aftermath of the seeming death of Steve Rogers, Barnes became the new Captain America. Rogers survived, but upon his return, he gave Barnes his blessings to continue as Captain America on the Avengers while he accepted a federal role as an administrator managing super-heroes.

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