JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED (MATTEL)
While I’ve up to this point only really mentioned him in passing here on the site, Ralph Dibney, aka the Elongated Man, is one of my favorite comic book characters, and certainly my favorite DC character. Though he’s been rattling around the DC universe since 1960, he spent his first 44 years strangely absent from other mediums, always playing second fiddle to Plastic Man. His lick finally changed in 2004, with first a DC Direct figure, and then a figure to correspond with his first animated appearance in Justice League Unlimited. I’m taking a look at the latter of those today.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Elongated Man was released in the first assortment of Justice League Unlimited three-packs in 2004. He was packed in a set which was supposedly based on “The Greatest Story Never Told.” Given that the episode in question is honestly one of Elongated Man’s largest roles on the show, it made some degree of sense. Of course, the fact that the set packed him with Batman and Hawkgirl (who, it should be noted, was not only not wearing her Thanagarian costume in JLU, but had also not yet returned after leaving in “Starcrossed”), and did *not* feature Booster Gold, who was, you know, the main character in the episode. I mean, sure, I’m thrilled about the inclusion of Elongated Man and all, but still. Elongated Man was also released single-careded, in both the orange and purple card styles, in 2006 and 2007. The figure stands about 4 1/2 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation. He’s built on the skinny male body (which was a tweaked Flash sculpt), which very definitely fits with the character’s depiction on the show. He got a new head sculpt. It’s an alright offering; not quite as spot-on as some of the others in the line, but certainly not bad. The decision to go with the full grin doesn’t work out quite as well as they’d hoped, I feel; he didn’t really show his teeth much on the show, so it throws the likeness off just a little bit. But, like I said, hardly a bad sculpt at all, and certainly one that made him unique from the other figures in the line. The figure’s paint work followed the show’s lead, putting Ralph in his ’80s era purple and white costume. It translates fairly well, and the application’s generally pretty clean. It hasn’t held up the best on my copy, who has some chipping and wear, but that could just be a me thing. The original three-pack release of Ralph had no accessories, but the two single releases added a weird grapple thing to clip onto his wrist. It’s an odd piece.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
The three-pack that Ralph was included in was one of the trickier ones to acquire early in the line’s run, and I don’t recall seeing one at retail during the original run. I also missed out on his single releases. Instead, I got my Elongated Man figure loose, in fact as one of my earliest purchases from All Time Toys way back in the day. I recall being quite excited to find him, especially since it meant I didn’t get saddled with extras of the other two figures in the pack. He’s not a perfect figure, but he *is* an Elongated Man figure, so that gives him quite a leg up in my book!