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Friday, 25 May 2018

Jakks Pacific Casts A Spell With Iggy Koopa

It's hard to believe that five years have passed since Jakks Pacific inked their initial licensing deal with Nintendo. In the time since then, the World Of Nintendo line has offered collectors a nice variety of action figures based on the numerous characters in the gaming giant's library.

From popular heavyweights like Mario and Link, to slightly lesser knowns as Pikmin and Sheik, it's clear that Jakks Pacific wants to delve deep within the pages of the Nintendo catalogue for this line - which is a very exciting prospect for those of us who grew up in a world where such collectibles seemed like something that we'd never see here in North America.

Now, there is a new assortment of World Of Nintendo figures beginning to trickle into stores, and its reignited our love for these little plastic playthings all over again! Designated wave 2-7, this new assortment goes heavy on the Super Mario mythos with some brand new action figures that fans are sure to get a real kick out of! And today, we're kicking things off with a look at the first figure in the wave - the classic Koopaling known as Iggy Koopa...

First introduced in Super Mario Bros. 3 on the Nintendo Entertainment System back in 1988, Iggy Koopa was the boss that needed to be defeated before clearing Giant Land. Like his siblings, Iggy would steal the magic wand from Giant Land's king and transform him into an animal. Depicted as a demented, hyperactive, and unpredictable genius, Iggy has made numerous follow-up appearances since his 1988 debut - with this newest Jakks Pacific figure based on his most updated look.

Iggy Koopa comes packaged on a bright red World Of Nintendo blister card that features the brand logo and a stock image of Super Mario dominating the upper right corner. The figure is clearly displayed within a large plastic bubble that also allows collectors to see the accessory that Jakks Pacific have packaged alongside him. The days of the little cardboard question block containing a mystery accessory are done and gone, but while we thought it was a rather inventive bonus with the first few waves, we've got to admit that we like this new packaging layout better.

Flipping things over to the reverse, you'll be greeted by a few stock images, and some basic information, surrounding the figure. The other figures in the wave are also displayed.

Moving on to the actual figure itself, Iggy Koopa is one beautifully bright piece of plastic. He stands 4.75" tall, thanks in no small part to his eye-catching sprig of bright green hair, and features multiple points of articulation. These include partial ball joints in both of his shoulders, wrists, hips, and ankles. He also gets the standard hinge style joints that we've seen time and again throughout the line, along with some additional swivels and hinges and even some full-blown ball joints located in both his elbows. Additionally, Iggy comes equipped with hinged ankles that really help with the balance and overall posing of the figure. Each joint is nice and strong, promising a long shelf life, and moves with relative ease and fluidity.

This officially gives Iggy Koopa some of the most articulation to be seen on a World Of Nintendo figure to date. Which is nothing to sneer at, especially given his $11 price point.

Taking a step back and truly admiring the figure from afar, we've got to admit that Iggy Koopa just hits all the right notes. The sculpt is incredibly strong, complemented by the addition of a spikey rear shell, studded bracelets and the iconic glasses and crazy eyes that set him back from his seven other siblings. The likeness of the figure is spot on, looking as though he just jumped right out of New Super Mario Bros. Wii and into our collection.

In short, Jakks has done a great job here!

This is an all-new sculpt that perfectly realizes the modern interpretation of Iggy Koopa.

You see, when he was first introduced in Super Mario Bros. 3, Iggy looked considerably different then he does now. Back then, and before popping up in The Adventures Of Super Mario Bros. 3 cartoon series, the character was primarily blue with a bright rainbow mohawk.

He pretty much matched his brother Lemmy perfectly. And this is something that would carry on from all subsequent Mario games that would succeed his 1988 debut, including Super Mario World on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and the classic rail shooter, Yoshi's Safari.

However, in more recent years, the character has finally found a true sense of individuality. Now, more than just a carbon copy of his brother, Iggy has donned some glasses and tussled up his hair a bit to become the popular Nintendo baddie we all know and love today.

The paint applied throughout this little figure is beautifully vivid and features nothing in the way of runs, smudges or smears - and believe us when we say that we've looked. Upon retrieving Iggy Koopa from his plastic prison, we spent a good half an hour inspecting the paint. But, instead of shaking our heads in disappointment - something that has unfortunately become the norm with many of the more popular lines from the larger toy manufacturers, we walked away satisfied.
Like we said, Iggy Koopa is one beautifully bright piece of plastic. Yes, the paint applications are nice and clean, and his brilliant stalk of hair features some fantastic airbrushing to give some gradient between two separate green hues. It's easily some of the very best paint work that we've seen within this line to date, and we must take a moment to applaud the artisans at Jakks Pacific for really upping their game with this newest assortment of figures.

Iggy's facial expression also looks to be ripped right out of the newest generation of Mario games. With those crazy eyes, thick, black glasses and toothy smile, there is no mistaking this figure for one of the other six Koopa Kids - which we're going to need ASAP, Jakks Pacific.

In the accessory department, Iggy comes with exactly what you'd expect - the patented yellow wand he's been raising heck with throughout the Mushroom Kingdom for thirty years. It's the perfect piece to include with the figure, and we're betting it'll be used more than a few times over given that Jakks Pacific is pretty much committed to give fans all of Iggy's siblings now.

At least, we really hope they are. After all, it'd be kind of cruel to only give fans one of Bowser's Koopalings, wouldn't it? Either way, we're prepared to make a case for it.

Honestly, this one is pretty much as perfect as it gets!

The sculpt is strong, the paint is vivid and nicely applied, and he's filled with articulation. This is how you do a cheaper action figure right - and Jakks Pacific has knocked it out of the park.

If we had to complain about anything, we will say that his shell makes him a little top heavy, and there is absolutely no movement in the figure's neck, but looking at everything else overall, we're more than willing to look the other way on these slight imperfections.

After all, is there really such a thing as a perfect action figure?

We'd say no, but the World Of Nintendo Iggy Koopa comes pretty damn close!

+ Strong Sculpt
+ Vivid Colors
+ Perfect Paint Applications
+ Plenty Of Articulation
+ Strong Joints
+ Appropriate Accessories
+ Aesthetically Pleasing

- Shell Makes Figure Somewhat Top Heavy
- Absolutely No Neck Articulation

Overall: "Jakks Pacific has unleashed one of the strongest entries within the World Of Nintendo line to date, which sets the bar for all future releases to come."

- Special thanks to Kopper Overton over at Jakks Pacific for sending the sample used in this review! And to Katie Passfield for taking the pictures used in this review!

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Until next time, Infinite Earths fans!

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