# 0035: Catwoman

CATWOMAN

BATMAN ‘66 (MATTEL)

Today, I’ll be taking a look another new addition to my collection.  It’s Catwoman from Mattel’s Batman ’66 line, which I have yet to look at on this blog, so this’ll be a first.  Awesome.  I’m going to assume everybody knows Catwoman, but if you don’t know the 1960s Batman TV show this version is based on, you should definitely read up on it.  It’s a lot of fun.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

This figure is obviously based on Catwoman from the 1960s show, but specifically, this one’s based on Julie Newmar’s portrayal of the character.  I’m more of a Lee Merriweather fan myself, but Newmar was the first, the longest running and is typically the best remembered Catwoman by fans of the show, so she was a good choice to do right off the bat.  Catwoman was released in (kind of) the second series of the Batman ’66 line, although she was released separately from the other two figures in the series.  She stands roughly 6 inches tall and has 22 points of articulation.  Unlike many of Mattel’s previous DC lines, which rely heavily on reuse, Catwoman is an all new sculpt.  Admittedly, it’s one of the better sculpts they’ve done, in that it does come fairly close to a real woman’s proportions, which is a nice change.  It’s not perfect, mind you, but not terrible.  The head sculpt is also well done, with more than a passing resemblance to Julie Newmar.  Unfortunately, the paint doesn’t quite live up to the sculpt.  It’s not terrible, but the face especially is really thickly painted, and the eye lashes and eyebrows are painfully obviously patterned designs.  None of this ruins the figure, but I can’t help but think that the likeness would increase ten-fold with a better paintjob.   Catwoman also includes a sound effect labeled stand and a character card featuring a screen cap from the show.  The stand is the same as every other stand in the line, but Catwoman’s reads “CRRAACK!” like the sound a whip would make, making it a good fit for Catwoman.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I acquired my Catwoman figure from Amazon, like the other Batman ’66 figures, when they all went up for preorder.  Amazon has quickly become my go to for ordering toys because it just makes life a whole lot easier!

#0034: Uncanny X-Men Team Pack

ROGUE, WOLVERINE, LONGSHOT & CYCLOPS

MARVEL UNIVERSE (HASBRO)

Today’s review looks at yet another mighty Marvel toy line, Hasbro’s Marvel Universe.  The Marvel Universe line is pretty much Hasbro doing Marvel characters in the scale that they know best: 4 inch(well, technically 3 ¾ inch, but let’s not split hairs).  The line’s been running for a few years, and Hasbro likes to mix things up occasionally and release figures in multipacks.  I’ll be looking at their 80s/90s X-Men Boxed set today.  The set features X-Men mainstays Rogue and Wolverine, as well as prominent 80s member Longshot and a kiddified version of X-Men leader Cyclops.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These figures were released in the 2013 series of “Team Packs”

ROGUE

First up, it’s everyone’s favorite angsty mutant who can’t touch anybody!  Rogue is depicted here in her Jim Lee designed 90s costume.  It’s a good choice, as this is the costume that most people are familiar with.  Rogue stands just shy of 4 inches and has roughly 20 points of articulation.    She’s built on Hasbro’s second basic female body, with a new head and arms, and add –on pieces for the jacket, belt, and boots.  The body sculpt is well done, and the generic body works fine for her underlying spandex costume.  The newly sculpted pieces are passable, if not the greatest.  The jacket’s sculpt is well done, and the boots do their job, though they do kinda stick out as add-on pieces.  The head is far from the worst in the line, or even the worst Rogue figure we’ve seen, but it’s not the best offering.  The hair looks fine, but the face is far too gaunt, and they’ve left her with her mouth permanently open.  The paint is passable, but could be better some places, particularly at the cut joint’s on her thigh, where it’s virtually impossible to get the lines of the yellow parts to line up.

WOLVERINE

Next, it’s the most famous X-Man by far!  Wolverine is depicted in his brown and yellow costume from the mid-to-late 80s, which, like Wolverine himself, is no stranger to the action figure world.  Wolverine stands closer to the 3 ¾ inch mark, making him noticeably shorter than Rogue, and he has 18 points of articulation.  The figure is actually just a repaint of the same version of the character from the Wolverine: Origins tie-in line, but since I never got that one, it’s new to me.  The sculpt is decent, especially the body, which conveys Wolverine’s short and stocky nature pretty well.  The claws are a solid piece on each hand, which is okay by me, since they have a tendency to warp at this scale. Like with Rogue, the head leaves something to be desired.  It’s a bit too squat, and the details are a bit on the soft side.  Paint on the figure is okay, though he does have very fuzzy lines on some of the brown sections, particularly the shoulders.

LONGSHOT

Next, it’s everyone’s favorite, uhhh… no, hang on, it’s just Longshot.  And Longshot’s nobody’s favorite.  Longshot is depicted in his debut costume from the 80s.  Longshot stands about 4 inches tall and features 22 points of articulation.  Hasbro wisely reused the body previously used for Ghost Rider and the AIM soldier.  It’s a nice body, with a whole lot of folds and wrinkles which work great to hide folds and wrinkles.  The reused body is masked with the addition of a new head and hands, as well as add-ons to represent his cuffs, pouches, and belt.  These are all well sculpted end fit well.  The head is obviously a focus point, and it’s a decent piece.  It has a pretty nice determined look, and actually manages to make his mullet look okay.  The paint is nice and clean, with no noticeable bleed over or slop.

CYCLOPS

Lastly, it’s the fourth figure in the three-pack.  So, yeah…that’s a thing.  He’s actually more of an accessory than a separate figure.  In the 80s, the X-Men had a few run-ins with the villain Mojo.  Mojo was a TV exec from another dimension, always looking for the new fad.  After a few fights with the X-Men, Mojo decided that what his viewers really wanted to see was the X-Babies, child versions of everyone’s favorite mutants.  This Cyclops is based on the X-Babies version of the character.  Cyclops stands just shy of 2 inches tall, and has no articulation.  Given the small scale and since he’s technically an accessory, the articulation’s not an issue.  He’s an all new sculpt, and it’s a good sculpt!  It’s nice and simplistic, but in a good way that reflects the source material.  The paint could be a bit better, as there is some noticeable slop, but it’s not terrible.  Cyclops may actually be my favorite figure in the set!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Nothing much to report in this section.  I mostly got this set because I wanted the other sets in the series and buying the whole series was the most practical way of handling it.  I’m certainly not disappointed by this set, but it’s not really one of my favorites.

#0033: Alpha Flight Minimates Part 1

GUARDIAN, PUCK, NORTHSTAR & MARINA

MARVEL MINIMATES

Did somebody say I should review more minimates?  No?  Oh…well, too bad ‘cause that’s what I’m doing, whether you like it or not!

Today’s review focuses on another set of the greatly expansive Marvel Minimates line.  This is also another set of characters from Canada’s premier super-hero team:  Alpha Flight!

Guardian is (was?) the leader of the group, husband of fellow member Heather Hudson, and all around generic hero guy!  Puck’s a short guy!  Northstar’s a guy who’s powers can only be activated by holding hands with his twin sister!  Also gay.  And Marina does water stuff!  There, now you know the characters as well as I do.  Let’s get to the review!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These four were released as a boxed set available through online retailer Action Figure Express during San Diego Comic Con 2012.

GUARDIAN

Guardian is depicted in his basic red and white, Canadian flag costume.  He’s built on the basic minimate body, so he stands a bit over 2 inches tall and features the standard 14 points of articulation.  He has a sculpted mask, with an alternate hairpiece to swap out to display James Hudson unmasked.  The detailing on the figure is well done, with little slop or bleed over.  James also doesn’t suffer from the same red paint bleed that Heather did, which is nice.  Lastly, Guardian includes an alternate robot head, so that you can depict the artificial replacement Guardian from after James’s death, which is a neat little throw in.

PUCK

Puck is shown here in pretty much the only uniform he’s ever had: Black unitard with boots and wrist bands.  It’s certainly an odd look, but I guess he looks fairly unique, so there.  Puck is built on the basic minimate body, with one slight deviation.   To simulate Puck’s diminished stature, he’s been given a set of “slipper” feet in place of the regular ones.  This brings Puck’s articulation down to 12 points, and only really reduces his height in a very subtle way.  It does help to make him appear a bit more stocky, however, so it’s not too bad.  Puck’s got a sculpted cowl, as well as a new hand that is sculpted to let him do hand stands with the included stand.  Puck’s detailing is well done, and fairly detailed, especially the hair on his arms and legs.  And I really like his face for some reason…

NORTHSTAR

Ah, Northstar.  This guy.  He’s probably the best known of the characters featured here, due to also being a member of the X-Men and, most likely, his status as one of Marvel’s  few long lasting gay characters.   He’s depicted in what is his best known, and in my opinion best designed, costume.  The simple black and white is rather striking, and it looks pretty good in Minimate form.  Northstar’s only sculpted piece is his hair, which he includes in both black and white.  This is a nice touch, given the variance in the coloring Northstar’s hair has received over the years.  I think I prefer the black just because that seems to be the way he’s depicted most often.  His details are handled with some pretty good simplicity, which really fits the character’s design.  Lastly, Northstar includes a stand to simulate his flying abilities.

MARINA

Marina was a later addition to the team, and she honestly didn’t stick with them for too long.  She married the Sub Mariner and joined the Avengers, where she was turned into a giant monster and killed by her husband.  Which is a bit of a bummer.  She’s depicted in what I believe is her only costume.  She’s built on the basic minimate body, though she has a set of specially sculpted hands to depict her webbed fingers.  She also has a sculpted hair piece, which is nicely done.  The entire figure is painted, no molded colors, which is a bit of a rarity for a minimate.  It looks nice, though, and helps to set her apart from the others.  She is certainly a unique looking minimate.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got this set, like so many other “Action Figure Xpress exclusives” from my very favorite minimate retailer: Luke’s Toy Store.  I do really like this set, which is really saying something, because I only have a passing familiarity with the characters it features.

#0032: Mr Mxyptlk

MR MXYPTLK

SUPERMAN/BATMAN (DC DIRECT)

Today’s figure is technically only half a figure.  Or rather, half a two pack that was sold as a single figure.  And this figure’s only half the figure he used to be…no, wait… Sorry, I’ll come in again!

Occasionally, there is a character that is of a much smaller stature than most other characters in the line.  Toy companies have gone back and forth on how to handle releasing such characters.  Selling the character by themselves means you either have to come up with a new price point (too difficult), or overcharge for them (which pissed off the fans).  The solution that a lot of companies tend to settle on is including smaller characters as an accessory with another character.

That’s the case with today’s figure:  Mr. Mxyptlk* from DC Direct’s Superman/Batman line.   Mxy was originally packed with the Joker, but I have several Jokers and increasingly less and less space, so I just kept Mxy.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Mxy was released as part of the fourth series of DC Direct’s Superman/Batman line.  The series was based on the S/B comic’s “With a Vengeance” story line, which was drawn by artist Ed McGuinness.  As such, Mxy’s based on McGuinness’s rendition of the character.  This isn’t really an issue, as his design stayed pretty much in line with the classic depiction of the character.  Mxy stands about 4 inches tall, and has 5 points of articulation.  The biggest tweak that McGuinness made to Mxy for the story was giving the character a top hat in place of his trademark bowler.  DC Direct decided to please everybody, though, and included both hats with the figure.  The hats are held in place via magnets in the head and each hat.  They work like a charm, and allow you two cool looks for the character.  The paint and sculpt on the figure are both done very well, translating Mcguinness’s clean style to three dimensions expertly.  The paint highlights the sculpt nicely, especially on his face, where the paint makes Mxy’s crazed look even more pronounced.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

So, as I said above, this guy was only available as part of a two pack with the Joker, who I already have several figures of.  But this is the only Mr. Mxyptlk figure that’s ever been released, or is ever likely to be released, so no way was I passing him up!  So, I bought them both and sold off Joker.  I know, that doesn’t sound like me.  But I had to draw the line somewhere!

*Pronounced: Mix-Yes-Spit-Lick.  Thanks go to Paul Dini for explaining that for everybody!

#0031: Heather Hudson & Box

HEATHER HUDSON & BOX

MARVEL MINIMATES

Look at that!  More Minimates!  What a rarity!  Okay, not really.   Today, I’ll be looking at two more minimates from the ever growing Marvel Minimates line.  It’s Heather Hudson & Box, members of Canadian super team Alpha Flight!  If you’re unfamiliar with Alpha Flight, they’re like the Avengers, but more ….Maple-y?

Heather Hudson is one of the more prominent members, though she typically operates under the code-name of her sometimes dead husband Vindicator.  Box is a guy who can control technology.  They’re just great!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These two were part of the 14th Toys R Us Exclusive series of Marvel Minimates.

HEATHER HUDSON

Heather is shown here in her Vindicator costume, based on that of her husband, James Hudson, the original Vindicator.  She’s built on the basic Minimate body, so she’s about 2 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  Her mask is a sculpted piece, and she includes it with two different colored visors: Blue and Red.  I prefer the blue mostly because the red plastic of the red visor bleeds through the white paint of the mask.  Heather also includes an alternate hair-piece so that she can be displayed unmasked and a stand to simulate her flying.  Her paint is decent, though she does have a recurring issue of red plastic bleeding through the white parts of her costume.

BOX

Box is depicted in his armored up form.  I don’t know which version because I’ve never really followed the character that closely, but I feel certain that he’s had more than one look.  His built on the basic Minimate body, though he’s got some extra pieces that make him a little taller, and his sculpted boots restrict his ankle articulation, leaving him with 12 points.  Box has a good selection of sculpted parts:  Helmet, chestplate, gloves, belt and boots.  He also includes an alternate gun hand, a blast off stand and an alternate hair piece to show Box’s ghostly operator Madison Jefferies.  The paint on Box is nicely done, with little slop and no issues with bleed through.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This set is important because it marks one of the first times I was able to purchase minimates from Toys R Us’s online store.  Of course, I had to know the sku’s because all of the set in the wave were listed as “Marvel Minimates Wave 14: Figure” but that’s beside the point!  Man TRU sucks…

#0030: The Fallen

THE FALLEN

MUTANT X (TOY BIZ)

Ah, Mutant X.  Man, that was such a 90s comicbook.  One that I enjoyed immensely!  Diamond Comics’ catalogue Previews offered figures of four members of the books main team “The Six”(No, I don’t really know why they didn’t offer all six.  Seems a little odd, doesn’t it.  It’s like only releasing  three of the Fantastic Four!).  Being a fan of the comic and a fan of action figures, particularly 90s Marvel figures, I of course wound up with a set.  Today, I’ll be looking at The Fallen, who was an alternate universe version of Warren Worthington III, aka Archangel.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The Fallen stands about 5 inches tall, and has 13 points of articulation.  He also had his signature wings, which could be snapped onto his back, and were made of a soft translucent green material, with wire running through to allow them to be posed.  The wires honestly didn’t offer much poseability, but it’s the thought that counts, I suppose.  Fallen also included an X-Logo shaped stand, which is good, because he can’t stand without it due to his top heavy nature.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Fallen, along with the other figures from the Mutant X line, was a Christmas gift from my parents.  I recall being fairly excited to open him, as he was my favorite character from the series.  Yay!

#0029: Hawkman

HAWKMAN

DC REACTIVATED (DC DIRECT)

Okay, so today’s review marks a slight change in the format of the blog.  Up until now, I’ve been actually picking the figures I review, with a little bit of purpose, plus a slight bit of alphabetizing , with the occasional review of a figure I just got.  Well, here’s the thing:  That’s a lot of work.  And I’m lazy.  So, from here out, I’ve created a randomized list of all the stuff currently in my collection that I’ll be working from, with possibly a few deviations.  New stuff will still be filtered in when I get it, as that makes life easier.

On to today’s review!  We’re looking at Hawkman from DC Direct’s Reactivated! line.  This was a line where DC Direct would reuse older tooling with a few new pieces in order to create various classically styled versions of the characters.  The line was pretty well done, though it had the ability to be a bit hit and miss.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Hawkman was part of the fourth series of the Reactivated! line.  He’s depicted here in the costume his Earth 2 version* wore during the many Justice League /Justice Society team-ups of the 60s and 70s.  It’s pretty much just his basic costume, but instead of a helmet that resembled a hawk, he had a generic yellow cowl.  At least it had a hawk symbol on the forehead, I guess.  It’s far from his most memorable look, but it was a look he had for a good chunk of time.  Anyway, that’s the look this figure’s based on.  He stands about 6 ½ inches tall, which puts him in scale with some of DC Direct’s other lines.  (They weren’t really good at picking a consistent scale and sticking to it).  He’s got 13 points of articulation, and a basic translucent blue stand with the Reactivated! logo on it.  His sculpting is solid, with good proportions all around, and the paint is nice and clean.  The wings are nicely textured, and have a nice wash over them to bring out the details in the sculpt.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got this figure because I wanted a Hawkman for my JSA, and I was always really liked the old team-ups that this look was featured in.  That’s pretty much it.

*In the sixties, DC comics decided to relaunch a number of their characters, such as Green Lantern, Flash, and Hawkman with new takes on the characters.  When they decided to bring back the original versions of those characters, as well as explain why characters like Batman and Superman could be in their 30s in both the 40s and the 60s, DC decided to come up with the concept of the multiverse. They dubbed the main earth “Earth 1” and the older earth “Earth 2.”  This concept allowed them to tell stories on both earths without having to infringe upon the validity of the other.

#0028: Leatherback

LEATHERBACK

PACIFIC RIM

Today, I’ll be looking at the final figure in the second series of NECA’s Pacific Rim figures.  This review will take a look at the lone Kaiju in this series.  I reiterate that if you don’t know what that means, stop reading now and go watch Pacific Rim.  Actually, even if you’ve already seen it and know exactly what I’m talking about, you should probably go watch it again!

On to the review…

THE FIGURE ITSELF

The figure in question is the Kaiju Leatherback.  Leatherback doesn’t actually do a large amount in the film, being largely secondary to his companion Kaiju Otachi, but what he does is fairly memorable, and he’s a good pairing with Striker Eureka, so he’s a good choice for the line.  Leatherback is in scale with the rest of the line and stands about 7 inches hunched.  He has 24 points of articulation.  The most noticeable part of the figure in hand is the serious heft that the figure possesses.  You could kill a man with this figure.  Well, maybe not kill, but seriously maim.  Anyway, the figure is pretty well sculpted, especially the texturing on the skin.  It lives up to his name.  Unfortunately, due to Leatherback’s more organic nature, the articulation is incredibly obvious, especially in comparison to the Jaegers from this series, who all work it in more naturally.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Leatherback is probably my least favorite figure in the series, mostly due to the issues with the articulation.  However, being my least favorite in this series is far from a bad thing!  Leatherback is still a high quality figure, and is a nice contrast to the Jaegers.

#0027: Striker Eureka

STRIKER EUREKA

PACIFIC RIM

Today, I’m looking at another figure from NECA’s second series of Pacific Rim figures.  Yesterday, I looked at a variant of the main Jaeger from the film, Gipsy Danger.  Today, I’ll be covering the second most prominent Jaeger from the film:  Striker Eureka!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Striker is built to fit in with the rest of the Pacific Rim figures, so he stands about 7 inches tall.  He has roughly 21 points of articulation.  Striker is mostly a light grey color, so the figure is molded in this color, with details added over top of it.  The detail paint is superbly done, and he has a nice wash applied all around that gives the suit a nice worn in look.  Striker’s design is very much influenced by the fighting suits from Neon Genesis Evangelion, with a design that features lots of sharp angles.  As such, it was very important for the sculpted details on this figure to be sharp.  There was a bit of concern on this point because it seemed that such details may have been lost on the Gipsy Danger sculpt, but I’m happy to say that it’s not an issue with Striker here.  Striker technically includes no accessories, thought he does have his stinger blades, which are jointed so that they can swivel back and forth, and can be removed if you so desire.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Striker was one of my favorite of the main Jaeger designs, so it follows that it was the figure I was most looking forward to in second series, and heck, even NECA’s Pacific Rim line overall.  The figure definitely doesn’t disappoint.  I was initially a bit let down by the lack of the nuclear device that Striker has strapped to his back during the final battle, but the rest of the figure is so well done that I don’t mind so much.  Striker is some serious awesome!

#0026: Gipsy Danger – Battle Damaged

GIPSY DANGER  – BATTLE DAMAGED

PACIFIC RIM

Okay, changing gears.  Today I’ll be looking at the first of the three figures in the second wave of NECA’s Pacific Rim line.  I just got this set, so I wanted to try to get the review up while it was still slightly relevant.  I know it’s the second wave, and I haven’t done the first, but I’ll to get to them soon enough.

Today’s figure is the main Jaeger Gipsy Danger.  If you haven’t seen the film and that confused you, stop everything and go see the movie.  Right now.  Go buy it.  I’ll wait.  Back?  Wasn’t it amazing?  The correct answer is “F*** Yes!”

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Okay, so this figure is of Gipsy Danger.  Gipsy is depicted here in her more damaged look from later in the film.  The figure stands about 7 inches tall, and has roughly 20 points of articulation.  The sculpt is really nice.  I’ve heard complaints that the details are a little gummy, but given the scale, I think they’re pretty well handled!  The paint is supposed to be the focal point of this figure, as that’s what separates it from the previous release, but let’s be honest, that’s not the reason people want this figure.  The real reason is the accessories, something that the previous release didn’t include:  Chain swords!  The chain swords are well sculpted and go in fairly easily.  However, they do have a tendency to fall out if you don’t put them in just right, so be careful.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I have to say that, while Pacific Rim series 2 was a set I was very excited for, this version of Gipsy wasn’t something I was really looking forward to.  I was wrong.  While I still don’t feel it’s the be-all-end-all Gipsy, it’s really fun, and it makes deciding which version to put on the shelf much more difficult.