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May 7, 2010

Gotta Have It! Statue Edition: Bowen Designs – Luke Cage Classic & Modern

Debuting  in 1972 in Hero For Hire #1, Luke Cage aka Power Man was incarcerated for a crime he didn’t commit, which led to him being used by a scientist in an experiment that went wrong, but ended up giving Cage steel hard skin and super human strength.  Since that day, Luke has been a Hero For Hire with Iron Fist, led the New Avengers, and after Siege wraps he will also be the new leader of the Thunderbolts.  With all of this going on, it’s no wonder that Bowen Designs chose to give Luke Cage not one but two statues, commemorating his classic look from his Hero For Hire days as well as the more modern take on the character.

Luke Cage Classic
Manufacturer: Bowen Designs
Sculpted by: Mark Newman
Height: 12″
Released: July 2008
Retail Price: US $150

Like a lot of the Bowen statues, Cage here is crafted in a heavyweight polystone, and I will say that the look of this Harlem Hero is spot on.  I did notice a slight difference from the actual statue and what I would think is the prototype piece pictured on the left, and that is that the arms are slightly lowered making Cage look a bit more natural and relaxed, and the head is tilted just slightly down towards his chest.  Other than that you get what you see here.

Around the huge chain belt  is where you will find some paint bleed, and after looking at several other Luke Cage statues the amount does vary, but it’s not too distracting from the overall piece. There is more where the hands and arms cross, but I actually expected that to happen due to the tight space and the different colors that would have to be used, and again it’s hardly noticeable and doesn’t distract from the statue’s look.  Now, there isn’t much detail to Cage’s costume (if you could call it that), but Newman does include the detailed stitching on the boots along with opting to wrinkle up the sleeves a bit to add a bit of realism, and he stands atop a pretty simple base that looks to resemble concrete.  Underneath the base are the four small  pads that help protect it and the surface you place it on, along with the numbering of the statue.

Luke Cage Modern
Manufacturer: Bowen Designs
Sculpted by: Mark Newman
Height: 12″
Released: July 2008
Retail Price: US $160

Now this is the look Cage has been sporting for quite some time, as he doesn’t wear a traditional costume and just prefers to kick a little ass in some jeans and a tank top.  So we basically get the same pose and exact same base, but the updated look does give Newman a chance to show off Cage’s muscles where much of the detail is, and he even gives Cage a pair of shades for added flair.  I didn’t find as much paint bleed on the belt of this one nor in the area where the arms are crossed on his chest.  There was a bit between the shades and the ears, but nothing too bad.

I really wish there was more of a difference between the two statues other than Cage’s attire, and since the modern version was only limited to 600 pieces (the classic was 1000), a different and better pose would have probably been more of an incentive to pick it up.  Cage had been spotlighted so much at this point that plenty could have been done to improve on this piece.  Hell, he could have been standing on the bodies of a few Skrulls from the Skrull Invasion story line.  It’s still a good looking piece, but I don’t see any point in actually collecting both unless you just really want to have a complete set.  In terms of pricing, it’s pretty standard for a Bowen statue so I’m not bothered by the price tag, though I’ve seen them go for slightly less on a few auction sites as of late.  I’m pretty sure if the proposed movie deal goes through, though, that the price will rise again

I’d give this one a 3.5 out of 5 just based on the amount of paint bleed and lack of creativity between the two pieces.  This is something I wish Bowen would change up when they do characters that span decades and they release both versions of that character’s costumes.  A different pose isn’t too much to ask, now is it?

Infinite Speech



  1. Billy

    I think both of those rule! Sweet Christmas!!!

  2. Kristin

    Luke Cage modern looks a little like Vin Diesel….

  3. I didn’t quite notice that until now Kris lol

  4. […] Welcome once again to Marvel Snapshot! In this weeks exciting spotlight, we’ll be looking at one of my more recent favorite characters, Luke Cage! This dude is one bad mofo and doesn’t take crap from anybody. He’s the subject of this weeks discussion so get ready to take it to the streets! (click here for some more Luke Cage love) […]

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