GUY GARDNER & KILOWOG
Today, I’ll be taking another look at the somewhat sad tale of DC Minimates. The line was amazing when it was new, and showed a ton of promise. And then, after eight series, it ended, and despite lots and lots (I mean LOTS) of requests, there’s been no return in the eight years since its demise. As amazing as it seemed at the time, the failure of DC Minimates seems pretty obvious looking back. In a desperate attempt to play catch-up with Marvel (who had a 15 series lead at this point), DC Direct frontloaded the line, by putting just about every heavy hitter in the first three series. This presented a bit of a problem for later series, as finding anchor figures was no simple task. As such, Series 4 and 5 went more or less anchor-less, instead relying on characters who were stand-ins for the heavy hitters. One such example is today’s set, which features the original stand-in Green Lantern, Guy Gardner, along with everyone’s favorite Poozer trainer, Kilowog!
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
Guy and Kilowog were released in Series 5 of DC Minimates. Due to the prominence of the Green Lantern books at the time, they were probably the best known pair in Series 5. That’s probably a first for either of them.
Guy Gardner was originally introduced as the “back-up” Green Lantern of sector 2814, who was supposed to take over for Hal Jordan, should anything bad happen to him. Presumably, this was only if Hal was incapacitated in some way other than death, though, since the comics have established that there’s a different process in place for replacing a dead Lantern. When he first appeared, Guy really wasn’t much different than Hal. Which kinda makes sense when you think about it. However, when they decided to have Guy be more than a one-shot wonder, his personality was changed, to make him a bit more unique. Also a bit more surly, cocky, and all-around less friendly. It was at this point that Guy got a new, more ‘80s vintage design, which is the basis of this Minimate. The figure is a little shy of 2 ½ inches tall and has 12 points of articulation. He has 7 add-on pieces for is hair, vest, belt, boots, and the edges of his gloves. The wristbands, belt, and boots were re-used from a number of earlier figures, but the hair and vest are unique to Guy. They’re a pretty good approximation of Guy’s look in the comics, though the hair feels like it could use a touch more detail work. Guy’s paintwork is fairly straight forward. His colors are pretty well chosen, and the details are all nice and sharp. His face does seem just a touch high on the head, causing the eyebrows to be covered by the hair. Guy was packed with a smaller lantern power battery, the same as Hal’s.
Kilowog is a surprisingly recent addition to the Green Lantern mythos, first showing up in the late ‘80s. He was around for less than a decade, before being killed by Hal Jordan during the horribly written Emerald Twilight. He then spent another decade or so being dead, but was brought back to life a few years before Green Lantern: Rebirth restored the GL Corps to its former glory. Despite being out of the game for quite a while, Kilowog is still one of the most prominent Green Lanterns. Kilowog uses his post-Rebirth design, which was mostly based on his DCAU look. The figure is built on the larger 2 ½ inch base body, since he was a pretty sizeable guy. It’s a little odd to see this body nowadays, but it’s not too bad for Kilowog. He has a unique head, which, aside from seeming a little squat, is a pretty good fit. He also has a bulkier add-on piece for his torso, which makes him a bit more imposing than some of the others to use the larger body. Though it has no character specific details, Kilowog was the only figure to use it. Kilowog’s paint isn’t too far removed from what Guy has. He uses all the same shades and such, which is good for consistency’s sake. His logo is slightly different than the ones seen on Guy and Hal, which is nice, since Kilowog sports his modern design. Kilowog was packed with a larger power battery (re-used from DCD’s Pocket Heroes line).
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Like every set in the DC Minimates line, I picked these two up from Cosmic Comix the week they were released. As both a Green Lantern geek and a Minimates geek, I was pretty excited for these two. That being said, neither of them is super stand out. I mean, they’re solid ‘mates, especially for the time, but they don’t do anything particularly noteworthy…which is probably why the pegwarmed pretty hard. Not bad little figures, though.