THE AUTHORITY (DC DIRECT)
“Apollo, The Authority’s mightiest member and partner to Midnighter stands ready to turn his super-strength and speed to taking care of the team’s business…no matter what the cost!”
Isn’t it a bit weird when a parody character is owned by the same company that owns the original character? Because, that’s kind of The Authority. They’re a dark parody of the Justice League, injecting the more idealistic League with a healthy dose of ‘90s anti-heroism. To be fair, they weren’t originally owned by DC; they came out of Jim Lee’s Image Comics-borne Wildstorm imprint, which Lee sold to DC when he decided he didn’t want to be a publisher anymore. The New 52 made them an official part of the main DCU, so now there’s a parody Justice League that exists in the same universe as the actual Justice League. What a world we live in. Anyway, today I’m looking at the resident “Superman” of the team, Apollo!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Apollo was released in the first, and only, series of DC Direct’s The Authority line in 2002, alongside his husband Midnighter, team leader Jenny Sparks, and the Engineer. The figure stands about 6 1/4 inches tall and has 9 points of articulation. His prototype had 11 points of articulation, but somewhere along the way, he lost his wrist joints. While Apollo obviously draws from Bryan Hitch’s take on the character (since I believe he was still the only artist to draw him at this point), it’s not an artist-specific figure like a lot of DCD’s later stuff would be. Instead, he’s been interpreted into DCD’s house style of the time. It gave their earlier offerings a more cohesive look, which I suppose isn’t the worst thing. He’s just a little blander than Apollo usually tends to be. The pose is also a bit stiff, but that’s just true of this era of DCD figures. The figure’s also rather scrawny for Apollo, who should ideally be sporting the same basic build as Superman. Nevertheless, this figure’s got about half the body mass he should; he almost looks more like Kid Apollo from the Authoriteens. Apollo’s paint is decent enough for what it is. He does end up looking a bit washed out, but that’s true of the design from the comics. It’s a bit tricky to do the creative lighting of the comics in three dimensions. I suppose they could have made the white pearlescent or something, but they weren’t really doing stuff like that at this point. I do like that they’ve done some accent work on his hair, and the details on his face are pretty sharp, so it’s hardly like they phoned it in or anything. Apollo included no accessories, not even one of the display stands DCD were so fond of for a while. That seems a little light given what he cost, but I don’t really know what you could have given him.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
So, I’ve never actually read any of The Authority or even any non-Authority stories with Apollo in them. My entire exposure to the character is having seen this particular figure solicited back in 2002, and then reading up on him in preparation for this review. Why do I own this figure, you ask? I was at All Time Toys on Small Business Saturday, and I had grabbed a handful of loose figures. They have a deal on loose figures, where you get a discount if you buy so many. Long story short, Apollo ended up running me about 50¢. I can get behind a 50¢ action figure. Of course, now I’ve got this compulsion to track down the other three Authority members, which is just downright silly, isn’t it?