BAT-TECH BATMAN & THE JOKER
BATMAN: THE CAPED CRUSADER (SPIN MASTER)
So, did you guys here about that exciting new DC-related thing that dropped last week? It was pretty big. It had Batman and Joker, and some others as well from what I hear. Lot of time in the making. I am, of course, referring to the latest assortment of Spin Master’s Batman: The Caped Crusader, dubbed “Bat-Tech,” which gives us some new, teched-out variants of the main players. What else could I possibly be talking about? Amongst these teched-out variants are, unsurprisingly, Batman and Joker, who are sort of headlining this whole thing. I’ll be taking a look at the two of them today!
THE FIGURES THEMSELVES
Bat-Tech Batman and Joker are both part of fifth series of Spin Master’s The Caped Crusader line, which is the first official assortment of 2021. The two of them both key into the whole “Bat-Tech” theme of this assortment, and the whole line has been slightly rebranded, with a new packaging set-up. They’ve kept the same general look and feel, including the blind boxed accessories, but the whole thing is slightly more refined, and just generally different.
There are three different Batmen in the main assortment, but this one’s the one that officially carries the “Bat-Tech” name, and is really the one that most clearly evokes that wacky variant feel. This particular Batman design doesn’t really have any direct ties to the comics that I know of, but instead does sort of a Tron-esque tech suit thing, which is mostly black, with some bright blue mixed in. I dig it. I dig it a lot. The figure stands about 3 3/4 inches tall and he has 17 points of articulation. I’ve had some issues with stuck joints on some of these guys previously, but I had no such issues for this guy, which I definitely appreciated. He’s an all-new sculpt, rather than borrowing from one of the previous Batmen. He’s slightly armored up, but in a different fashion than the two prior armored Batman designs. This one’s definitely more streamlined, which fits well with the overall design. Like the other caped figures in the line so far, Batman’s is cloth. It seems to be a slightly sturdier material than prior capes, and generally hangs a little better than the slightly more paper-like material from previous releases. He’s still got the hole in it, to keep with the line’s overall playability set-up. Batman’s paint work is pretty basic and straight forward, but also his strongest asset. It’s quite eye catching, and the application is generally pretty clean, without any notable slop or bleed over. Batman’s blind packed accessories consist of a winged back pack, an oversized batarang, and what looks to be a grenade launcher of some sort. Mine are all in a clear blue; I don’t know if they have varied potential colors like prior releases, but the all blue certainly works for me; it looks kind of like they’re hard light constructs or something.
Joker has been a consistent fixture of the Caped Crusader line so far, turning up in just about every assortment. It makes sense, him being Joker and all. Like Batman, he gets wacky-variant-ized here, taking the classic Joker design of earlier figures, and sort of disheveling it a bit. He’s 3 3/4 inches tall with 17 points of articulation, and like with Batman, I had no issues with stuck joints this time around. Joker’s sculpt is a mostly new offering, although he does make use of the head from the prior Joker. It’s sensible from a consistency stand point, so I can’t really knock it. This Joker sculpt takes the prior, more classic and clean Joker, and sort of makes him look like he’s been in the midst of the action, picking things up as he goes. He’s ditched his tie, and lost one of his shoes, replacing it with a stray boot. He’s also added a few straps of pouches, as well as adding his own utility belt. It’s a cool, sort of wasteland-looking Joker design, and definitely a lot of fun. His paint work mostly keeps with the classic Joker color scheme, with the added details getting their own paint work…for the most part. One of the straps goes unpainted, but the others are good to go. The application gets a little fuzzy on a few of the edges, but generally looks pretty solid. Joker’s secret weapons are a boxing-glove arm attachment (which is totally getting used with my GL figure), a laughing fish, and a little wind up chattering teeth bomb. They’re all in a clear green, which makes a nice contrast for the blue with Batman, and I love how they’re all so well tied to the character.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Full disclosure: the two figures reviewed here were sent to me in exchange for a review courtesy of Spin Master, in order to help promote their figures in conjunction with the release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League. Per Spin Master, The Bat-Tech collection features exciting, high-tech styles of figures to collect featuring a variety of 4-inch and 12-inch figures from the Batman universe, and they are available in stores now.
I’ve been supporting Spin Master’s DC stuff pretty much since day 1, and I have definitely been pulling for them to really succeed with this line, because everything I’ve gotten from them has been so fun. With the Bat-Tech set-up, it really feels like they’re starting to find their footing with the brand, and are making it more their own thing. Both of these figures are a lot of fun, and give us two pretty solid new designs for characters that we’re undoubtedly going to see crop up again and again. The new play pattern really works, and I’m definitely going to be snagging other figures from this set as I find them.
I really like their line. I just don’t collect much DC stuff anymore except for the occasional 6-7 in scaled Batgirl or Harley Quinn but I totally respect hat they’re doing. They have a very Kenner feel to them but with a better assortment of characters, both heroes and villains. They’re also always available! They seem to have really good distribution of their line.