BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES (KENNER)
There’s no denying that Batman: The Animated Series is probably the greatest comic book adaptation in the history of comic book adaptations, and it’s also one of the greatest things to come out of the ‘90s. While the show as a whole was always very high quality, there are definitely some episodes that stand out above the rest. My two favorite episodes of the show’s run are “On Leather Wings” and “Heart of Ice” (which, no small coincidence, were both animated by Spectrum Animation, a sadly short-lived studio that produced some of the best animation ever seen on Saturday morning TV). “On Leather Wings” was the debut episode, which perfectly set the tone of the show. “Heart of Ice” comes later in the first season, but is just as defining an episode, taking a second-string Batman villain and turning him into one of the mythos’ greatest characters. I speak, of course, of Mr. Freeze, who is the subject of today’s review.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Mr. Freeze was released in Series 3 of Kenner’s Batman: The Animated Series line, based on his appearance in the above noted episode, “Heart of Ice.” Despite that being the story that elevated Mr. Freeze to the public eye, this is actually the third Mr. Freeze figure to be released, following the Super Powers and DC Super Heroes versions (though, if you want to get technical, those two are almost the same figure). The figure stands 5 inches tall and he has 4 points of articulation (it’s possible there’s an articulated neck, but since the dome isn’t removable, it’s not ever moving). He’s based on Freeze’s initial animated appearance, which, in my opinion, is the superior of the two. Kenner was known for tending to approximate the animated looks, without getting them dead-on. Freeze actually fairs quite a bit better than most of the figures Kenner put out. The head’s a little on the large side, but it’s a pretty much perfect recreation otherwise. Likewise, the body is overall quite solid, with the only real downside being the very skinny arms featured. That being said, they don’t look terrible, and the figure as a whole recreates the look very nicely. Freeze’s paint is pretty straight forward, but that’s to be expected with the animated designs. The colors are a very good match for the show, and the application is generally pretty clean. Freeze was packed with his freeze gun, which was connected to an over-sized version of his cold-tank. The tank could be filled with water, and when squeezed, the water would shoot out of the freeze gun. Not a perfect effect, but not bad.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Okay, I don’t know for sure, but I’m fairly certain that this Mr. Freeze was the first Batman rogue I ever owned. My dad got him for me not long after I saw “Heart of Ice” for the first time. This figure went a lot of places with me, including a trip to Gettysburg with my dad and Mr. Freeze himself, Michael Ansara. He also got stuck on the roof of my house once, through no fault of my own. This is probably one of my favorite figures I own, mostly for sentimental value.