Guardian (Toy Biz ToyFare Exclusive)

April 18, 2011 | By More

Alpha Flight is one of the few team books I read consistently. Ironically, I didn’t start reading it until after Guardian was dead. Well, he wasn’t really dead, but…never mind that. James Hudson was dead at the time, and his wife Heather had assumed the mantle of leadership of Alpha Flight.

Years later when ToyFare offered an exclusive figure of Guardian in 1998, you know I couldn’t pass it up. Mailed in a plain white box, this Canadian hero is one of very few superhero figures in my collection.


ToyBiz wan’t exactly known for laser precise depictions of the heroes in their X-men line. This figure is a repainted body with a new head. When you think about it though, most male supes of the era were drawn in pretty much the same manner. A large muscular male wearing a spandex suit with a design on it. The downside to this body are the gaping attachment holes in the back.

The overall pose is fairly neutral, as most nineties figures tended to be. His arms and legs are straight and there’s no pre-posing.

One thing that strikes me about this figure is the amount of visible mold lines and flash. There’s even a spot on his left knee that isn’t trimmed very well.

I guess we should discuss the elephant in the room. Guardian has a very distinct costume based on the Canadian flag. A large portion of the left side is a large red maple leaf. And, well, this doesn’t look like a maple leaf. It also doesn’t match from front to back in a symmetrically the way it should. In short, when I received him in the mail, I could almost feel my Canadian friends outrage. I mean let’s face it, if a North of the border company made Captain America’s costume this out of whack, the Internet would be ablaze with hatred.

On the upside, the paint is crisp. There’s a little fade on some of the white, but white on red is fairly difficult to pull off. Also, I have to give credit to the color. The red and white of the costume is created by molded pieces and painted pieces. Because of the paint matching it’s not blatantly obvious which are which.


The fun portion of ToyBiz’s Marvel line was the huge breadth of characters they produced. Getting a figure of Guardian is a good example of that, even if he was an exclusive.

The articulation here is pretty basic. Hips, knees shoulders, elbows and head. While this would have been more than enough points for a kid back in the day, today’s collectors would scoff at the lack of ball joints.

The elbow and knee joints are secured by rivets, which is something we really don’t see any more. Sadly, the left elbow on my figure is fairly loose. I’m sure I could probably tighten it with a hammer and punch. With my luck, I’d shatter the joint, so I think I’ll leave it alone.

As with most superheroes, Guardian isn’t know for really using any equipment. In this case, he is sans accessories.


Is Guardian a great figure. No, probably not. Is he one of the few representations of Alpha Flight in plastic form, and for that I’m grateful. While his costume isn’t perfect, he is recognizable as “Weapon Alpha” and fill a spot in my collection.

Engineernerd Score: 75/100

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Category: Featured, Marvel, Toy Reviews

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  1. Tim Mischka says:

    It should be noted, that the head was repainted from its’ initial use as the villain Blacklash, in the mid-90s Iron Man line (tying in with the TV series).