#3320: Jean Grey



“Trapped in an alternate universe, Jean Grey wages a battle against Omega, one of Apocalypse’s minions. One of the most powerful mutant telepaths on the planet, Jean Grey has teamed up with Wolverine to put an end to Apocalypse’s diabolical plans once and for all. With her transforming Catapult Tank Blaster, Jean has a secret weapon that can send any opponent down for the count!”

By 1997, Toy Biz’s X-Men line had firmly moved away from purely comics-based figures, and was fully venturing into the “wacky variants” territory.  Assortments moved to a generally themed nature, with that theme usually being some sort of gimmick.  Both X-Men and Spider-Man took on an underlying line rebranding in ’98, with the X-Men one being
“Secret Weapon Force.”  Though the main purpose of these assortments was have an excuse for wacky variants, Toy Biz did at least throw peopled a bit of a bone, and tried to make some of those variants line-up with something actually from the comics.  In the case of today’s figure, Jean Grey, it allowed them to give her “Age of Apocalypse” look some coverage, after it had been left out of the proper tie-in assortment for the storyline.


Jean Grey was released in the “Battle Blaster” series of Toy Biz’s re-branded X-Men: Secret Weapon Force line.  The four figures in the assortment were all loosely AoA-themed, with the pretense of this being our Jean trapped in an alternate universe.  Jean was the most straight forward of the bunch, at least in terms of design.  The figure stands about 5 inches tall and she has 5 points of articulation.  Jean marked the second use of the Monster Armor Mystique body, which would become one of Toy Biz’s favorites in the later 5-inch run.  She uses the main body, sans the skirt, with a new head sculpt (though the prototype on the back of the box was just a straight repaint).  The new head is a decent match to her AoA look in the comics, so that’s pretty decent.  The body’s not terrible, though I’m not a huge fan of the enormous right hand, or its general lack of posing.  Also, this release kept the etched-in lines from Mystique’s gloves and boots, which don’t line up with Jean’s costume details.  Jean’s paint work was generally okay.  It follows her look from the comics fairly closely.  Some of the details are a little fuzzy, especially on the costume.  I do like the tattoo on the face, though.  She’s also got a “Secret Weapon Force” insignia on her leg, which isn’t true to the original design, but is still a little cool, honestly.  Jean was packed with her “Secret Weapon Force” secret weapon, which was a Catapult Tank Blaster.  Given the sheer size of this thing, I’m not clear on just how she manages to keep it “secret,” but she *is* a telepath, I suppose.


Despite being a main character for the franchise, by this point in the X-Men line, Jean Grey figures were still rather rare.  If you saw one, you got it.  That’s just how it was.  I wanted a non-Phoenix Jean, and this was my only real option at the time, so you know I went out there and got one…with my Grandmother’s money, most likely.  I know I got the Cyclops from this set first because, well, Cyclops, but Jean was a fairly close second.  Gotta have those two together, right?  She’s not a bad figure, I guess.  I mean, not great, but also not bad.  It was a nice way for Toy Biz to get this variant of Jean out there and continue the AoA line-up just a little bit more.

#3315: Quicksilver



“The speedster known as Quicksilver belongs to a family of strong mutants, his sister is the Scarlet Witch and his father is Magneto! Quicksilver spend the early part of his career as a member of Magneto’s Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, before realizing his powers would best be put to use for the good of all Mankind. Since that time, Quicksilver has been a member of several super-teams, including X-Factor and the Avengers!”

Though he hasn’t quite made the lasting impressing that his twin sister has in recent years, Quicksilver is still certainly in a better spot than he was back before 2014.  Nowadays, he’s almost a household name…well, one of him is, anyway.  Not sure which.  Probably not the comics one, but that’s the one I’m looking at anyway, so let’s just stick with that.  Anyway, here’s a Quicksilver, I guess.


Quicksilver was released in the infamous “Muntant Armor” series of Toy Biz’s X-Men line.  There were two variants of Quicksilver available, one in his classic blue and white costume and one in his his then-current white and grey one.  Back in 2015, I looked at the white and grey, so today’s review focusses on the blue and white.  The figure stands about 5 inches tall and he has 11 points of articulation.  As noted in the prior review, Quicksilver was built on the smaller male base body, which Toy Biz got quite a few uses out of around this time.  He shares his mostly new head sculpt (retooled from the Battle Brigade Archangel) with his variant, and it’s still a pretty good take on the character.  His paint work was obviously the main selling point.  It’s a pretty solid recreation of his classic design.  For true accuracy, it should have the black shorts, but this isn’t horribly inaccurate or anything.  Application is pretty clean for the most part, with minimal slop or bleed over.  Both versions of Quicksilver got the same accessories, a weird machine gun thing (missing from both of mine) and a dust cloud running effect stand, which was re-used from Meanstreak, but was now in a fun translucent grey, which was generally just a little more effective for the appearance of a dust cloud.


My dad had this version of Quicksilver, while I had the other one when I was growing up.  I was always a fan of this one too, but I liked having my own distinct version.  Over the years, though, I’ve been slowly working at getting a full run of the Toy Biz Marvel, and I was able to snag this guy at a toy show, in order to help me towards that goal.  It’s intriguing that Toy Biz did Pietro with both costumes, seeing as he’s exactly the sort of character that you don’t really need multiple figures for, but now, well, now I have both, and I guess that’s kinda cool, right?

#3310: Meanstreak


X-MEN 2099 (TOY BIZ)

“A former researcher for the multinational corporation Alchemax, Henry Huang broke with his corporate masters, and now uses his superhuman mutant speed and dazzling intelligence to battle for mutant rights in the year 2099 as Meanstreak of the X-Men!”

While Spider-Man 2099 has generally been accepted as being an overall successful and not terrible idea, the rest of the 2099 line has always been generally accepted as not so much successful or not terrible.  Marvel tried to launch 2099 equivalents for all of their best-selling books at the time, so unsurprisingly, there was an X-Men 2099.  It was populated by a bunch of characters unrelated to the main timeline characters, who were all just very, very ’90s.  The team’s resident speedster was Meanstreak, who was fast and mean.  Okay, maybe not so mean, but the name sure sounded cool, right?


Meanstreak was released in the first series of Toy Biz’s X-Men 2099 line, which hit in 1995.  He really only had the one look, so that was the one he had here.  The figure stands just over 5 inches tall and he has 9 points of articulation.  Meanstreak got what became the most basic articulation set-up of Toy Biz’s Marvel lines, which works out pretty well for him when it comes to decent running poses and such.  Meanstreak sported an all-new sculpt at the time, though it would see a little bit of re-use later down the line.  It’s honestly a pretty strong one, perhaps the best basic build sort of sculpt that the 2099 line had to offer.  The proportions aren’t anything too crazy, the costume details are clean and a good match for his design in the comics, and his face is cartoony, while still fitting with the overall vibe of the line up to this point.  One does have to wonder how the baggy boots and all sorts of pouches are going to do on a guy that’s a speedster, but hey, it could certainly have been worse.  In an era of particularly gaudy color schemes, Meanstreak actually had a pretty sensible one, sticking more or less to primary colors.  His paint work followed suit, and the end result is clean, bold, and fairly eye catching.  There were two versions of the paint on this one: one with a dark metallic gold on the bands, belt, and boots, and one where those parts are a slightly metallic yellow.  I personally prefer how the yellow looks, especially in conjunction with the other colors, but they both work in their own way.  Meanstreak was packed with a small gun, which he could fold up and store on his belt, as well as a running effect piece, which would later be re-used for the main X-Men line’s Quicksilver.


I’ve talked before on the site about the store Ageless Heroes, a comic book store near me that went out of business when I was about 6 or 7, whose clearing out sales netted me a whole ton of 5-inch Marvel.  Well, Meanstreak wasn’t added to my collection because of that directly, but he did come to me indirectly because of that.  A family friend ran the Masquerade at a couple of local fan conventions, and she had cleared out a large chunk of Ageless Heroes’ remaining stock when they closed for the purposes of having some goodies to put in the prize bags for the children’s costume competition.  I would help her out with various pieces of set-up, and in exchange I was always allowed to pick out one of the figures from the box of stuff meant for those bags.  Meanstreak was one that I just really liked the look of, so he was one that I specifically chose. 20 some years later, I still know virtually nothing about the character, but I still have a real soft spot for the original yellow-colored version of the figure I picked out all those years ago.

#3305: U.S. Agent



“U.S. Agent is the ultimate super soldier of justice. And with his awesome shield, he proves it. To prepare shield for crime-fighting action, gently push the extension of his shield along the top of the shield-launcher until it locks into position. Wrist launcher and shield can both be attached separately to his wrist, thus making him ready for any – and every – attack!”

When they first took over the license, before building all sorts of different lines, Toy Biz’s Marvel toys were initially split into X-Men and a larger Marvel Super Heroes line, which covered literally everything else.  The line ran five series, with its final assortment being entirely re-hash…or at least very close to re-hash.  There were a couple of re-paints, and only one actual new character, whom I’m looking at today.  Yes, it’s time for another version of John Walker, aka U.S. Agent!


U.S. Agent was released in the aforementioned Series 5 of Toy Biz’s Marvel Super Heroes line.  The figure stands just under 5 inches tall and he has 7 points of articulation.  U.S. Agent’s entire existence in the line was due to his easy parts re-use, so he’s a complete re-use of the standard Captain America molds.  Cap’s sculpt was honestly one of the best from this line, though it’s kind of the best because it’s so specifically Steve Rogers as Cap, which works just a little bit against this figure’s intended purpose.  The clearly denoted sections of chain mail, as well as the vertical stripes on the mid-section, and the star symbol on the front of the chest are all elements that don’t work quite so much for the U.S. Agent costume.  Likewise, the face is very definitely Steve, not John.  That said, the paint does its best with the material, and it’s honestly not terrible looking.  It helps that a lot of it’s black, which hides more of the extra details, and it also helps that the paint work is pretty sharp, so it at least looks pretty good.  U.S. Agent is packed with the same shield and launcher as the basic Cap.  It’s a little clunky, but honestly a fun gimmick, since the shield still functions as a shield, while also working with the launcher.  The shield has been appropriately re-colored, and looks pretty nifty.


I’ve owned this figure three times over.  My first one came to me as a gift from my Nana, who had gotten him for both me and my cousin Rusty, I believe as a “good job with school” gift.  Mine was well-loved, but also wound up losing his foot at one point, in an incident I was never able to explain.  Rusty was kind enough to give me his, so I had one with two feet again, but I lost the shield and launcher from both over the years.  Enter the third one, which was given me just a few years ago by Max, who had gotten a sealed one and decided he didn’t really need it.  As U.S. Agent, this guy’s not quite there.  As The Captain, he’s actually not bad, so I’ll just consider him that way, I guess, because at least then I can enjoy him unimpeded.

#3280: Hulk Buster Iron Man



“When Iron Man’s regular armor isn’t powerful enough to get the job done, Tony Stark devises new specialty suits of armor — each tailored to the needs of a specific mission! The heavy combat armor contains few built-in weapons — but it boosts Iron Man’s physical strength to near-impossible levels!”

First appearing in Iron Man #304 as an add-on for the newly introduced Modular Armor, Iron Man’s Hulk Buster armor has become a steady fixture of the character’s armor set-ups.  It was quickly adapted into animation as part of the ’90s cartoon, and with its official appearance in the show occurring the much-improved second season.  The design was granted its first figure in that show’s tie-in line, and I’m taking a look at said figure today!


Hulk Buster Iron Man is part of Series 3 of Toy Biz’s Iron Man line, as one of three Iron Man variants in the line-up.  Though the armor appeared in the show, this figure’s design owes less to that look and more to his appearance in the comics, likely owing to this figure being released prior to the show’s second season, and the final design not yet being ready*.  The figure stands just over 5 inches tall and he has 9 points of articulation.  The Hulkbuster armor is typically a lot larger in stature than a standard Iron Man, but this one’s only a very slight bit taller, with most of his difference in size being more of a width thing.  He’s certainly bulkier, but he definitely feels somewhat diminutive compared to where he should be.  This was presumably done to keep him within the standard price point range.  As with the rest of the line, the figure’s assembly consists of a core figure with a number of armor add-on pieces, though there are notably a lot less of the armor pieces for this release than there were for the others.  The underlying figure isn’t too far removed from the whole design, but he’s certainly less impactful than the fully-assembled look.  Fully assembled, he gets an additional helmet (rare for these figures), shoulder pads, wrists gauntlets, and boots.  The coloring is a mix of metallic and flat.  It works out alright, but there’s definitely a little clashing between the reds.  At least the yellows match.  Beyond the extra armor pieces, the Hulk Buster doesn’t have any other accessories.  Not that there’s a ton more you could include, I suppose.


I was a really big fan of the Iron Man cartoon and its corresponding toy line when I was a kid, so I actually had most of the figures, especially the Iron Men.  Hulk Buster was included.  I don’t recall exactly how I got him, though I assume he was probably a gift from my parents, because they got me most of my Iron Man figures.  While I lost a few of the armor pieces to my original over the years, I was able to snag a replacement that came through All Time a few years ago.  Calling it a win.  I was always the slightest bit let-down by this figure’s scale, but he’s otherwise not a bad little figure.

*Had the Iron Man tie-in line continued, we would have received a more accurate recreation of the show’s actual animation design, also matching the stature and general concept of the Hulkbuster a bit more.  The figure was ultimately scrapped, but the molds would resurface for a few other releases, including the Battle-Action Mega Armor Wolverine.

#3275: Spider-Man – Web-Racer



“Fighting super-villains in a big city like New York can take a lot out of a super hero – but not Spider-Man! With a quick double-tap on the shooters, Spider-Man is able to swing across town in mere minutes, giving his foes barely enough time to even THINK about crime!”

When Toy Biz’s tie-in line for Spider-Man: The Animated Series launched, it came with it two variants of the titular character.  They weren’t quite delving into the more prominent Spidey variants just yet, so the two that were present were both decidedly mild, doubling as fairly standard looking Spider-Men as well.  Both figures were dedicated to some variation on Spidey’s web-shooting, with today’s focus specifically honing in on his distinctive web slinging.


Web-Racer Spider-Man was released in the first series of the Spider-Man: The Animated Series tie-in line.  He sports a standard Spider-Man design, specifically adapting the look from the show, but functionally working as a fairly classic Spidey.  The figure stands about 5 inches tall and he has 6 points of articulation.  The movement on this release was greatly reduced, with the arms permanently held outstretched to facilitate the action feature.  The figure’s sculpt was largely unique to this release.  The only real shared piece was the head, a common part to almost all of the Spideys from this line’s early run.  Lack of mobility aside, the sculpt actually looks pretty solid.  The proportions are quite realistically balanced, and without any shoulder joints, the figure has a nice flow about it.  There’s a channel sculpted into the arms and torso of the figure, which has a string running though the whole way.  He can be picked up by either side of the the string, and he’ll slide to the other end, appearing to swing or climb.  It’s simple, but it’s not a terrible idea.  Spidey’s paint work is nicely handled.  It’s bright, colorful, and all of the line-work is pretty cleanly handled.  I suppose the webs on the red sections could be a little sharper, but they were consistently placed, and generally looked pretty good.  Spidey included no accessories of his own, but he did get a small plastic Venom pin…for those that need small plastic Venom pins.  Not sure why Spider-Man has a Venom pin, but, hey, there it is.


With Series 1 largely out of stores by the time I started collecting, I didn’t end up with any of them when they were new.  I got to tracking some of them down, but I didn’t exactly have a shortage of standard Spider-Men, so this one was never really high on the list.  This one happened to be a stray figure traded into All Time along with a couple of other Toy Biz figures.  Since I didn’t have him and he was easy to snag, I did just that.  He’s not anything flashy, but he’s a pretty fun little variant.

3270: Mystique



“Wanting her foster-daughter Rogue back in her life, Mystique helps Miser Sinister in his plan to take over the X-Men! Shapeshifting into the Beast, Mystique tricks the X-Men into Sinister’s clutches. Witnessing Sinister turn Rogue into a monster proves too much for Mystique and she turns against the villain, using the now out of control monster Wolverine to aid in her revolt.”

Oh boy, late ’90s X-Men line.  When the whacky themes ran rampant.  Early in the line, things were rather focused and comics based, with a little bit of the cartoon input bleeding in here and there.  As the line progressed, the concepts started to get weirder, but not too crazy.  1996 had some weirdness, but it was 1997 where things got crazy, and each assortment seemed to be trying to top the last.  We had Ninjas and Robot Fighters, and eventually they just turned everyone into monsters.  Yeah.  At least we got one new character out of the whole deal, though.  Let’s look at Mystique.


Mystique was added to the X-Men line in 1997’s “Monster Armor” assortment, which was the twentieth series of the line.  This marked Mystique’s first time in 5-inch form, though she’d previously been part of the 10-inch line as a rather hastily thrown together Rogue repaint.  Mystique was seen here in her classic attire, likely chosen because it matched her animated appearances.  That was a small grace, since she had some real doozies in the ’90s.  The figure stands just under 5 inches tall and she has 5 points of articulation.  She marked a rather reduced articulation set-up.  Generally, this assortment marked a move away from practical articulation and into more pre-posing, a la what McFarlane’s offerings of the time.  Mystique’s articulation was good for minor tweaks to keep her standing, but ultimately not much else.  Her pre-posing was at least kept to a minimum on the figure’s sculpt, so she doesn’t look quite as silly as some of the others.  The sculpt has a respectable set of proportions, and just generally looks pretty balanced.  Toy Biz was clearly a fan of this one, too, since it got quite a few re-uses in the following years.  The paint work on this figure is decent enough.  Some of the change-overs are a little fuzzy, but there’s nothing horribly out of place and all of the important details are there.  Mystique was packed with her own set of Monster Armor, which included a mask, hand, and feet clip-ons, meant to turn her into a loose approximation of Beast, as mentioned in the bio.  It’s not spot-on, but it works okay, and it’s actually a pretty sensible accessory set-up for a character whose main gimmick is shape shifting.


When this assortment hit, I got distracted by the prospect of another Cyclops, and wound up not actually getting any of the others.  I’ve been slowly grabbing the rest over the years, and Mystique was on the top of my list.  I wound up snagging her from Collector’s Corner a few years ago, when they were doing a sale on a lot of their action figure back stock.  She’s not bad.  I mean, sure, she could be more posable, but otherwise she does look pretty decent, and it was the best option for a very long time.

#3235: Hobgoblin



“A criminal mastermind bent on Spider-Man’s destruction, the Hobgoblin employs an eerie arsenal to carry out his malevolent schemes. Hurling pumpkin bombs and razorsharp bats from his jet glider, the Hobgoblin has Spider-Man constantly on his guard!”

When Spider-Man: The Animated Series was going into production, its story editor John Semper, who guided the show throughout its run, was not part of the initial crew.  When he arrived, he discovered that a number of odd decisions had been made by higher ups, in an aim to keep the show more relevant.  With the Green Goblin identity having been abandoned in the comics and Hobgoblin serving as the main goblin antagonist, initial plans had Norman Osborne assuming the Hobgoblin identity, rather than Green Goblin.  This choice was so cemented that Toy Biz’s tie-in line’s first assortment had already gone into production with Hobgoblin in its roster, in place of the more classic Green Goblin.  Semper disliked the choice, but was forced to keep Hobgoblin for merchandising purposes.  However, rather than make Norman Hobgoblin, Hobbie was kept a separate character, and the order of the goblin appearances was reversed, with Norman’s Green Goblin joining the show later.  But, Hobgoblin was still in the show’s opening line-up.


Hobgoblin was released in Series 1 of Toy Biz’s Spider-Man: The Animated Series tie-in line, with re-issues in both the Marvel Universe and Marvel Super Heroes lines.  The mold was also up-scaled for the 10 inch line, and downscaled for the diecast line.  He was based on Hobbie’s classic design, just like the show design.  It was really his only look at the time, so it made sense.  The figure stands about 5 inches tall and he has 7 points of articulation.  His articulation scheme is rather odd; he’s got shoulders, hips, and knees on both sides, but only his right arm gets elbow movement, and he lacks a joint for his neck.  It winds up making the figure rather stiff.  His sculpt was an all-new one at the time, and wound up more or less remaining unique, though there were a couple of re-issues and minor re-colors.  It’s a decent one for the most part.  Some of the details are a little bit on the soft side, but the general layout of everything looks pretty decent, and he wasn’t a terrible match for the animation design.  His paint work is generally pretty good.  The application’s not particularly intensive, but it’s generally clean.  Though he’s clearly got sculpted elements on the hips for his shorts to go a little further, they are unpainted.  It’s not terribly noticeable, though.  Hobgoblin was packed with his Goblin Glider and a pumpkin bomb.  His arm is spring loaded, and there’s a notch in his hand so he can fling the pumpkin bomb, and the Glider also features a launching missile at the front.  None of it’s terribly obtrusive to the figure’s design, which is certainly a plus.


I didn’t have the regular Hobgoblin as a kid.  I was never much attached to the character, really.  I did have the little diecast version, and one of my cousins had this particular release, but that was the real extent of it.  The one seen in the review came to me courtesy of Max.  I’ve been working on my 5 inch Marvel collection for a while, and he had snagged this guy, but ultimately didn’t feel like he needed to keep him, so he was kind enough to pass him on to me.  How very kind of him.  The figure’s okay.  There were better Hobgoblins and just better figures in general in the line.  Even the basic Green Goblin’s honestly a better figure.  But, he’s certainly not bad, especially for the era.

#3230: Nimrod



“The most dangerous Sentinel of a dark future timeline, the robot known as Nimrod has returned to the present to achieve his prime directive — the eradication of all mutants! With an arsenal of weapons and a virtually indestructible body, there’s little anyone can do to stop him… even the X-Men!”

Where would we be without our dangerous Sentinels from a dark future timeline?  In a much worse place, I assure you.  I mean, without Nimrod, we wouldn’t have Bastion, or all of the Orchis subplots from Hickman’s X-Men.  Could you imagine a world without those things?  Because I can.  And…actually I wouldn’t mind it so much.  But I guess I’d miss Nimrod a little bit.  But, fortunately, he does exist.  So, you know, here we are.


Nimrod was released in Series 6 of Toy Biz’s X-Force line.  This marked his very first time as a figure, and would more or less remain his only version for a surprisingly long time.  Unfortunately, due to an issue of timing, they wound up going with a very modern and up to the moment look that Nimrod was sporting in the X-Force comics at the time, which was a rather divergent look that didn’t stick.  But, I guess it’s better than nothing?  Sure, let’s go with that.  The figure stands a little under 5 inches tall and he has 6 points of articulation.  Nimrod wasn’t particularly posable, with no neck or elbow movement, as well as greatly restricted movement on his shoulders and knees.  Not really a ton you can do with it all, but it’s kind of something you have to deal with on any version of Nimrod.  He’s just clunky.  The figure’s also rather on the small side for Nimrod, who’s classically a pretty sizable guy.  He’s chunkier than other figures, but not actually any larger, which does make him seem…less than imposing.  The figure does an alright job of capturing the design from the comics, for better or for worse.  It’s not as sleek a design as the usual, but there’s at least some cool tech detailing.  Nimrod’s colorscheme is largely red, which isn’t the usual, but it’s again accurate.  All of the red is molded, with painted yellow and black accenting.  Nimrod was originally packed with a missile for his wrist cannon, which my figure is missing.


Nimrod wasn’t really much on radar as a kid, largely due to him not actually looking like the character in anything I knew him from.  I wound up getting him much later, during one of my 5-inch Marvel sprees in the summer of 2017.  He’s not really the figure anyone wanted.  He’s not bad, though.  Just limited by the source material he came from.  It’s just a shame they didn’t at least do him in the more classic Nimrod colors at some point, just to sort of do that half step.  But, nowadays, we’ve got the Legends release, so I guess it all worked out.

#3226: Air Assault Batman



“Gotham City’s most dangerous villains have escaped from Arkham Asylum! In order to save humanity. BATMAN and ROBIN have armed themselves with special rapid-deployment techno-cape backpack equipment and highly- camouflaged suits to track down every last criminal- no matter where they are hiding! Join the BATMAN Crime Squad on their life or death mission to save humanity from its most dangerous enemies!”

Last Friday, Kevin Conroy passed away.  Though perhaps not a household name, he was well known through the world of fandom as the voice of Batman for three decades.  He was the definitive voice for the character, and the one that legions of Bat-fans hear in their voice whenever they think of the character.  Like so many greats, I never met Kevin Conroy, but I’ve heard plenty of stories from people that did that support that, outside of being the definitive Batman, he was also just a really great person, who very genuinely appreciated the support of his fans.  Batman: The Animated Series launched the year I was born, so, for me, Kevin was always Batman.  There was no time where he wasn’t the voice I heard in my head, and his portrayal shaped my view on the character almost entirely.  It’s going to be very odd to not hear him as Batman in future projects.  But, there’s no denying the impact he had, and the legacy he left behind.  So, in his honor, today I’m taking a look at a Batman figure.


Air Assault Batman was released in 1995 as part of the “Crime Stoppers” sub-branding of Kenner’s Batman: The Animated Series tie-in line.  “Crime Stoppers” was designed as Kenner’s justification for doing a bunch of wacky Batman and Robin variants, under the trappings that these new suits were designed to aid in rounding up a bunch of escaped villains.  The first series has six Batmen and one Robin, and notably no actual villains for them to stop.  This guy was very areal themed, as you might guest from his name.  The figure stands about 5 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation.  His sculpt was largely unique, apart from sharing his head with all of the standard Kenner Batmen from the line.  The head was, admittedly, a pretty good recreation of the animation model, so it’s a respectable re-use.  The body sculpt was new, and sports a bit of an armored up look. Presumably, it’s to help combat g-force, or something like that.  It also looks pretty sweet, so it’s got that going for it.  The extra armoring details are rather fun, and do a rather nice job of changing him up a bit from the basic Batman look.  The color scheme on this guy goes for a very sky-oriented look.  He’s largely a light blue shade, with some white accenting that got a sort of art deco kind of patterning to it.  It’s funky, and honestly doesn’t feel too out of place with the overall aesthetic of the line.  The finish on mine has taken a bit of a beating over the years, but it’s not as bad as some in my collection.  Air Assault Batman only included one accessory, but it was the source of his whole gimmick: his Transforming Techno-Wing Backpack, perfect for all your assaulting in the air needs!  It’s honestly a pretty fun piece, with a bunch of moving parts, and just a cool overall look.


This figure’s pretty notable, because, while he’s not my first Batman (that was this guy), he’s still a very early one, more than likely my second, and very definitely my first Animated Batman figure.  I got him for Christmas in 1995, alongside my very first Robin, which sort of cemented the two of them as a pair, especially given their similar gimmicks.  He got a lot of play time as my go-to Batman, until I had more standard versions to replace him (and even then, he just got shifted to being Earth-2 Batman for all of my JLA/JSA cross overs).  And, of course, he always sounded like Kevin Conroy in my head.  Thank you for everything you did, Kevin.