SUPERMAN – BLUE
The 90s were weird. Like, for everyone. Marvel had their whole shoulder pads and pouches thing going on, which is one of those things we’d all like to forget now. DC was getting in on the weirdness too, and few characters got hit as much as Superman. First he died and got replaced with four “x-treme” takes on the mythos. Then he came back, but he was different and he had a mullet. Then he lost the mullet, but the sun also got blotted out, preventing him access to his solar-based powers. The only logical solution was to convert his powers to electricity. That’s just obvious. Anyway, the result was Superman Blue, a radical departure from the Superman we all knew and loved. He didn’t really stick around for long, but he had a rather distinctive design, which did build up a rather decent fan following, resulting in a few action figures over the years. Let’s take a look at the most recent version!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Superman Blue was released as part of the second series of DC Direct’s JLA: Classified line. All of the figures in the series were based on looks from the 90s, so Superman fit in pretty well. The figure stands roughly 6 ½ inches tall and features 13 points of articulation. Due to the nature of the sculpt and how the articulation was implemented, most of the articulation is ultimately pointless, and the figure’s only real pose is a basic standing one. The JLA: Classified line worked as a companion line to the four assortments of Ed McGuinness-styled Superman/Batman figures produced not long before. So, Superman Blue is presented here in Ed McGuinness’s style, though I’m not sure that McGuinness ever actually drew Superman Blue. Admittedly, it’s a style that works pretty well for the design, so I can’t really complain. Most of the McG-styled figures made use of a lot of the same pieces, and Superman Blue is no exception. He gets a brand new head, but from the neck down he’s a straight re-use of the basic McG body first used for Captain Atom. It’s not a terrible body, but it’s not without its flaws either. It’s definitely well-defined, and in keeping with a lot of McG’s illustrations, but the arms are definitely way too stubby. The head is a pretty decent sculpt; it matches up pretty well with the regular McG Superman, but it’s got a slightly more smug expression, which at the very least adds some variety. The character’s spiky electric hair is quite nicely conveyed, and the head-band-thingy is appropriately sharp and clean. The only real issue is that the head is just a tad too big for the body. The paintwork is alright; the blue and white are appropriately bold, and the figure definitely stands out. However, the application of the white areas is a little uneven, and the elements on the arms and legs which should mirror each other end up not doing so. The figure’s one accessory is a small black display stand with the JLA: Classified logo printed in blue.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Superman Blue was another piece of the large selection of figures I bought on sale from my local comicbook store. He’s not my favorite design of all time, but at $3, I figured he was worth it. The figure is overall pretty decent, and while it’s not perfect, it does add a certain degree of “pop” to the shelf.