Once upon a time, Marvel had a really cool villain named Venom. He became so popular that they made him a hero, and then realized that they still wanted a villain, so they created Carnage, who was a lot like Venom, only a sociopath. And now, Carnage has graduated to Spider Man Classics.
Carnage is covered in a creepy red symbiote with flowing black patters. he frequently sports big, blade-like fingers, and has big white eyes and a toothy mouth with no lips. This figure is pretty much dead on to all of those. My only complaint here is that Carnage in the comics, at least to me, always seemed quite thin and lean. This fig is pretty average-looking in the build department (I've heard he's based on the Silver Surfer body, and I can believe that), but making him just slightly thinner (ala Parachute Spider-Man) would've fit my mental image of the character better. It's a small complaint, though, and Carnage works just fine as is.
Carnage is a fairly easy sculpt; lots of flowing, squiggly patterns and a new head. His head is unmistakably Carnage, and his body is appropriately squiggly, so he does the job just fine for me. His ball joints don't have any sculpting (as normal), but actually do a better job of blending in to his sculpt than an average Marvel Legends or Spider-Man Classics figure would, due to his unique look.
Again, he's red with black squiggles. Even if he's painted badly, it's hard to notice. My Carnage has areas where his black isn't as dark as other places, and places where the black doesn't completely cover the sculpted raised area it is meant to, but his look just kind of blends together and manages to look just fine, regardless. Thanks to some black spots applied randomly to his ball joints (hip and shoulder), they blend in nicely with his general sculpt, as well. The paint on Carnage's eyes and mouth (the only places where it could particularly matter) is okay, but with some sloppiness, as is common with Toy Biz figures. However, I have to say again, sloppiness only improves Carnage for me, since I always pictured him as constantly shifting at least slightly, due to his manic personality. In fact, some pink overspray makes a couple of the teeth on my Carnage appear to be floating into his mouth area, but whereas this would be really odd in most characters, it actually works well with my mental image of this one. Your mileage with this justification may vary, but he looks good to me.
He's pretty much standard height for Marvel Legends figures, which seems just fine to me. His head looks to be a little too big, perhaps in an effort to make him appear smaller, or possibly even scarier. Can't say for sure. As noted above, I tend to think of Carnage as a leaner, more wiry guy, but his fairly average build in this figure works well, too.
Universal joint neck (the common new neck type for Marvel Legends figures, and quite a few Spider-Man Classics figures, as well; up-down and left-right movement on separate joints that work together), lats (lifting shoulders), ball-joint shoulders, double elbows (somewhat limited by his sculpt), twisting and flexing wrist joints, thumb, forefinger, and other fingers as one block, ab joint, waist joint, ball-joint hips, thigh twists (just below the ball joint), double knees, shin twists, flexing ankles (with no side-to-side motion), and flexing toes. Good, solid, ML/SMC-style articulation. Mine has some slight floppiness in one knee and one elbow.
Carnage comes with a truly lame base "trap." Pull on the disembodied Carnage head that's permanently attached by a string, and it slowly crawls back to the trap, where walls that look like Carnage's symbiote snap shut around a central platform. The walls come up to about Carnage's hips, and look like a viscous fluid, as they should. I've heard that this accessory is actually re-used from a prior Spider-Man, but I'm not positive about that. Either way, it'll probably be fun for kids, and tossed in a box for collectors.
Standard Spider-Man Classics cost. This one came from K-Mart and cost $6.99, which is a bit higher than you can find him for at other retailers.
Being a villain, though, he's packed lightly, so it's sometimes a "now or never" kind of proposition. I'd say Carnage is worth the price, if only to expand the roster of Marvel characters in your collection.
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