#2888: King Shark

KING SHARK

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

One of the absolute best parts of The Suicide Squad is Nanaue, aka King Shark.  King Shark has had a rather recurrent history with the team in the comics, but was left out of the first film in favor of Killer Croc, due to director David Ayer not wanting to rely as heavily on CGI for the character.  Given how the rest of the movie worked out, that was an odd line to draw, but whatever.  King Shark was in the second film, and he was awesome, and everyone agrees.  Great that we can all be on the same page about something.  Given his relative size, he’s been split up and made into a Build-A-Figure…but is also being sold as a single through Walmart, because why not?  Todd’s gotta Todd.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

King Shark is the Build-A-Figure for the Suicide Squad-tie-in line-up for DC Multiverse, split accross the four single figures included.  As I mentioned above, the same sculpt is also available pre-assembled and with a few accessories (and a different pair of shorts) as a Walmart-exclusive.  I’m just as happy to not have to deal with Walmart, so here’s the main line version.  The figure stands 9 inches tall and he has 26 points of articulation.  After giving McFarlane some credit yesterday on the articulation front, I’m going to have to give them a hard time again, because oh boy is the articulation on this figure’s lower half just an absolute mess.  There are full universal-style hip joints under the shorts, but due to the thick rubber of said shorts, they are completely motionless, which seems like a silly design choice.  Of course, even if the hips were free to move, the knees would still be locked.  Again, there are full joints, but for some reason, there is a sculpted “lock” on each joint, which prevents them from getting much range.  You can flex them ever so slightly, but that’s it.  The ankles and toes are fully articulated, though, which is super useful, what with nothing else on the legs being mobile or anything.  Thanks McFarlane.  At least the upper half isn’t so bad.  The arms and neck get decent mobility given the design, and he’s even got an articulated jaw, which doesn’t look terrible.  The general quality of the sculpt is pretty nice.  It matches well with the model seen in the film, which is itself a really good design for King Shark.  He’s got that perfect balance of menace and cuteness, just like in the film.  He’s also quite sizeable, as he should be, and there’s some serious heft to the figure.  In terms of paint work, he’s honestly pretty good.  The skin does a nice job of subtly shifting between the two shades, without too much in the way of slop, and the smaller details of his face are pretty decently rendered as well.  Even the pants get a touch of accenting to bring out the sculpted pattern, which is pretty cool.  King Shark is really an accessory himself, and while the single has a stand, a card, and some limbs to chew on, the standard release doesn’t get anything extra.  Given the sheer size, though, it’s not really an issue, plus, he is, again, essentially an accessory himself.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

This guy was my primary want from this set, from the word go.  I’ve always had something of a soft spot for the character, ever since the Total Justice days, and his recent appearances in Harley Quinn and the lead-up to The Suicide Squad got me very much on board with owning this figure.  After seeing the movie, that resolve only increased, and I was very excited to crack them all open and assemble this guy.  The leg articulation set-up sucks.  There’s no way around that.  I know there are modifications that can be done to fix it, but, unlike, say, Bloodsport, where the mods help but aren’t necessary, this feels more like fixing things that should have just worked out of the box.  All that said, the figure does look really nice, and the upper half is at least decent in the articulation department.  Even with the flaws, he’s still the second best part of this set.

All in all, I was expecting to be happy with this set, but I wasn’t expecting to like all of the individual figures quite as much as I did.  Polka Dot Man is the definite star for me, with King Shark right behind him.  Peacemaker and Harley are both really solid figures, too, and, much like in the movie, Bloodsport is the real surprise, as a figure I had no investment into, but that I actually came around to liking quite a bit.  The most damning thing about this set is the lack of a Ratcatcher II to complete the core team, since she’s really the heart of the film, and my favorite character to boot.  Hopefully, McFarlane will find a way to add her to the set.

#2887: Harley Quinn

HARLEY QUINN

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

“Harley Quinn, re-incarcerated for making a cash withdrawal with her car, buys her freedom once more by joining the Squad.  This colorful, cheeky, cheerful psychotic still has all her deadly dynamic moves, and the single-and-ready-to-mingle rogue is as eager as ever to show them off…much to Amanda Waller’s dismay.  But Harley, in her signature, ladylike style, isn’t afraid to manhandle anyone who comes her way.”

The Suicide Squad is a film that is, simultaneously, it’s own movie, and also a sequel to Suicide Squad. It’s a weird spot for a movie to be in, but it honestly handles things pretty well, by keeping just enough from the prior film to feel like it’s truly building something more, while also being light enough with pre-existing backstory that you don’t have to see the last one to understand what’s going on in the slightest.  One of the few characters to be carried over between both films is Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn.  I felt the role wasn’t really written to Robbie’s talents in the first film, but TSS gave us a Harley that was the best version of the character pretty much since Batman: The Animated Series.  I found her to be a thoroughly likable character, and Robbie was given a great chance to shine.  As the highest profile character in the movie by far, Harley is of course one of the figures in the tie-in line, and I’ll be taking a look at her today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Harley is figure 4 in the Suicide Squad-tie-in assortment of McFarlane’s DC Multiverse.  Harley gets two distinct appearances in the film, but this figure opts for her disheveled party dress look, which she has for most of the film’s run-time.  While I’d still like to see her jumpsuit and goggles look, I can understand doing this one first.  The figure stands just over 7 inches tall and she has 36 points of articulation.  After ragging on McFarlane about articulation implementation yesterday, I do have to give them a little bit more credit today, as Harley’s joints aren’t nearly as detrimental to the sculpt when she’s posed.  The elbows and knees in particular are a much smoother transition, and I do appreciate that McFarlane’s been good about making sure their female figures get double joints too.  Harley’s sculpt is generally a pretty decent one.  Her arms and legs are perhaps a touch lanky, and the dress is a solid chunk of largely unmovable rubber, but it looks good, and the Margot Robbie likeness is undoubtedly one of McFarlane’s best real person likenesses.  It’s still not perfect, mind you, but it’s still really good.  Harley’s paint work is a mix of kind of phoned in and really intricate, which is sort of weird.  The base work is all just sort of there, and much like Bloodsport, I really feel there are some areas that would benefit from some accenting, namely the dress and her hair.  However, there’s some really clean, sharp detail work going into her tattoos, which shows that they were at least trying.  And I can certainly appreciate that.  The no guns rule means that Harley doesn’t get any of her firearms, but she does at least get Javelin’s javelin, which is a pretty nice plot relevant piece, and one that makes her feel less lacking than Bloodsport or Peacemaker.  Also included is a display stand, a collector’s card, and the legs to King Shark.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Harley was the figure I was most dragging my feet on in this line-up.  I was purely just grabbing her for the King Shark legs.  Then I saw the movie, and I was really happy with how they handled the character, and suddenly I was really wanting this figure.  She’s honestly pretty good, and shows that McFarlane is stepping up their game in terms of figures based on real people.  I’m still hoping to see the other look, too, but this one’s a very good one for now.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2886: Peacemaker

PEACEMAKER

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

“A huge, hulking specimen with muscles on his muscles, Peacemaker is a world-class marksman—just like his fellow Squad member, Bloodsport, but if you ask him, better. He’s more than willing to fight, kill, and even start a war, but of course it’s all in the name of keeping the peace.”

First appearing in 1966, Peacemaker was a Charlton character, who, like the rest of the company’s characters, was passed along to DC when they purchased Charlton.  Peacemaker’s most notable contribution to the cultural lexicon is serving as the basis for the character that would become The Comedian in Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ Watchmen.  Peacemaker himself has been rather a minor character in the grand scheme of things, making him a natural fit for joining the Squad.  John Cena’s take on the super patriotic madman, and dude-bro Captain America type, proved so popular during the making of the film that James Gunn and John Cena have already been tapped to create a HBO Max-exclusive show all about him.  After seeing him in the film, I can certainly see the appeal.  And I’ve also got the figure.  Score!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Peacemaker is figure 3 in the Suicide Squad-themed assortment of McFarlane’s DC Multiverse.  As with Bloodsport, there are two versions of Peacemaker available: masked and unmasked.  The masked is the standard release, while the unmasked is a Target exclusive.  Todd’s gotta Todd, right?  The figure stands 7 1/2 inches tall and he has 36 points of articulation.  Peacemaker’s articulation is pretty typical for a modern McFarlane offering, but it also means he falls victim to some of the bigger issues that the articulation entails, mainly that his sculpt is pretty badly broken up by putting him into poses other than just basic standing.  The worst offenders are definitely the elbow joints, which are really broken up and jarring when they’re bent.  It’s not a great look.  I mean, it’s certainly posable, but you tend to hope for something of a middle ground.  Hasbro’s got double joints down that don’t do those sorts of things.  Surely McFarlane can do a little bit better.  Odd implementation of the articulation aside, the sculpt itself is generally pretty nice.  The head has a respectable likeness of John Cena, and the mask is a decent recreation of the really goofy helmet from the movie.  The body also has a fairly nice set of proportions, matching well with Cena’s usual build.  The costume details are also quite well rendered, with some really nice texture work, especially on the shirt.  Peacemaker’s paintwork is certainly the most colorful of the bunch.  It’s still generally pretty basic, but it looks good, and the application is solid.  I do wish the helmet was a brighter, and perhaps shinier helmet, maybe even chromed, but I get how that wouldn’t necessarily be practical at this scale and price point.  When it comes to accessories, Peacemaker is affected similarly to Bloodsport, in that he’s not allowed to get any fire arms.  Instead, he’s got a broad sword, which he’s seen using during the film, and in a more prominent role than Bloodsport’s weird katana.  It’s not a bad choice, even if it’s maybe not the main choice I’d go with.  Fortunately, there are other options available for him, and I was able to get myself a third party version of his modified Desert Eagle (courtesy of Mark2Design), so I’m pretty happy.  In addition, he’s got a display stand, a collector’s card, and the arms to the King Shark Build-A-Figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Of the individual figures in this line-up, Peacemaker was definitely a strong second, after Polka Dot Man.  He’s just got a really good look, and there’s never been a Peacemaker figure before.  It helps that I really liked John Cena’s portrayal of the role, and I look forward to seeing how the show turns out.  The figure’s generally a pretty strong one.  The articulation could be a little better, but otherwise, this one’s a pretty strong figure.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2885: Bloodsport

BLOODSPORT

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

“Bloodsport is a world-class marksman specializing in brutality—his hands, and anything he wields with them, are deadly weapons. Trained by his mercenary father from the moment he was born, this hardened criminal has but one soft spot…which, of course, Amanda Waller uses to persuade (i.e. blackmail) him to join the Squad.”

When Will Smith was unavailable to reprise his role as Deadshot for The Suicide Squad, the film needed to fill his role in the line-up with someone with a similar energy.  Idris Elba was rather quickly announced as Smith’s replacement, initially just as a recast Deadshot, but ultimately as a different character entirely.  Bloodsport’s a rather minor Superman foe, created by John Byrne during his post-Crisis run on the book.  He’s never amounted to much, and he’s ultimately something of a blank canvas.  Honestly, he’s in a very similar spot to Deadshot himself when he was added to the Squad’s initial line-up in the ’80s, and that similarly allowed Gunn and Elba to craft a character that goes far beyond the simple quick replacement for Deadshot that he could have been.  He’s key to the core arc of the film, and gets his own unique spin on something of a tried and true backstory.  Bloodsport was central to a lot of the film’s marketing, so it’s no surprise to find him amongst the figures we got for the toyline.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Bloodsport is the second figure in the Suicide Squad-themed assortment of McFarlane’s DC Multiverse.  In true McFarlane fashion, there are two versions of the figure available: masked and unmasked.  I’m looking at the masked version, which is the standard release, while the unmasked is a Walmart exclusive.  Given that he’s pretty evenly splits his time between the two looks in the film, it would certainly have made far more sense to include two heads with one figure, especially since literally everything else about the figure is the same, but that’s not how McFarlane’s ever operated, really.  I mean, at least it’s not like the Justice League Batman, where you have to buy no less than three of the same figure to get each minor tweak on his goggle/mask placement.  It could be worse, you guys.  The figure stands just over 7 inches tall and he has 36 points of articulation.  The Suicide Squad figures make use of rubber torso covers to allow for a little more range of motion to their torso joints, which is I suppose not the worst idea.  It’s not a lot more range, especially on Bloodsport, but it does give him a little more flex, which isn’t a bad thing.  Otherwise, the articulation works much like any other Multiverse figure, which means there’s an alright range, but it doesn’t always look super pretty.   That said, Bloodsport’s joints impede his aesthetics less than others from the line, so it’s a mark of some improvement.  His sculpt is largely pretty good.  He’s got more going on than Polka Dot Man, so there’s more for them to work with.  There’s a lot of layering and texturing, which all works pretty well, especially the texturing.  Some of the details, especially on the torso, are slightly soft, and I’m really not a fan of the front butt thing he’s got going on with his pelvis, but it generally looks good.  Obviously, the head has no likeness, but it matches well enough with the helmet design from the movie, and quite frankly, it doesn’t look any less like Elba than McFarlane’s actual unmasked head does.  There was initially some belief that the two Bloodsports might get different paint schemes, since the stock photos were quite different.  As it turns out, that’s because the unmasked shots were just on the actual production body.  Gone are all of the actual accents or the proper bronze coloring, replaced by a slightly metallic orange, that’s really much too bright for the character.  The general scheme is there, but the figure definitely lacks something.  I’ve already modified mine to do some panel lining and proper accenting (though the photos still show him unmodified), and it makes the figure look a lot better, for what it’s worth.  It’s just a shame he’s not like that out of the box.  Bloodsport is, in the movie, typically depicted with projectile weapons, but for the purposes of this figure, he gets two swords, which don’t feel quite his speed.  To McFarlane’s credit, they’re based on a sword that Bloodsport has in the film briefly, but it’s really brief.  Word is that Warner doesn’t want their figures coming with guns, and that’s why the swords instead.  Given the very sci-fi nature of Bloodsport’s weaponry, you’d think an exception could be made, but I can believe McFarlane’s hands were tied on this one.  At least he got *something*.  Also included is a display stand, a collector’s card, and the torso to King Shark.  Compared to Polka Dot Man, he does feel slightly light.  If only we could have gotten, oh, I don’t know, an unmasked head…

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When these were first shown off, I was really only interested in Bloodsport for the purposes of getting the King Shark part.  Then I saw the movie, and I really, really enjoyed the character, and that made me actually really want his figure.  I opted for the masked version, largely because it’s the easier of the two for me to get, and also doesn’t require me to step into a Walmart, but also because I really wasn’t feeling McFarlane’s take on Elba.  This is a figure that needs some work to really make him shine, but ultimately I’m still very happy with him, flaws and all.  If anything, that little bit of work makes me appreciate him all the more, and feels almost appropriate to the character.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2884: Polka Dot Man

POLKA DOT MAN

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

“Dourly dispirited Polka Dot Man wears his rainbow-pustuled dermis with all the shame of an acne-riddled teen going stag to the prom. But when he sprays his colorful dots, his sparkling spots can turn even the smoothest criminal into swiss cheese.”

The Suicide Squad, DC’s second live action film based on the titular team, this time helmed by James Gunn, dropped a month ago today.  It was one of my most anticipated movies of the year, and I was very much a fan of the final product.  Gunn has a flair for the oddballs, and that was in full force here.  For me, one of the definite highlights of the film was David Dastmalchian’s Abner Krill, aka the Polka Dot Man, who, despite his very hokey and minor background from the comics, gets to be quite a major part of the film’s story, with a very satisfying arc.  Thankfully, he’s one of the handful of figures they’ve put out for the movie, so I get to take a look at that figure today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Polka Dot Man is the first figure in the Suicide Squad-themed assortment of McFarlane’s DC Multiverse line.  He’s directly based on the character’s appearance in the film. The figure stands 7 inches tall and he has 36 points of articulation.  Polka Dot Man’s articulation follows the standard McFarlane set-up, though he loses the extra cap pieces in the shoulders, which gives him extra side to side motion, which works very well and doesn’t hurt the look too bad either.  The figure gets an all-new sculpt, in his full costumed look.  He’s really only got the one look, so that’s what they go with here.  Krill’s design in the movie is a pretty faithful recreation of his original comics look, with some minor adjustments for real-world adaptation.  It’s rather colorful, pretty goofy, and absolutely perfect for the character.  The sculpt captures’s Dastmalchian’s likeness pretty nicely, and is honestly one of McFarlane’s best human likenesses.  Likewise, the body matches his build pretty well, and the detailing on the jumpsuit and boots is well rendered.  There’s some strong texture work going on there.  The goggles are a separate, removable piece, allowing for placement up or down.  I know, I’m just as shocked as you that McFarlane didn’t take this opportunity to do two variants with differing goggle placements.  It’s to the figure’s benefit, of course, since it means he just generally looks much better, and it has that versatility going for it.  Polka Dot Man’s color work is generally handled with molded colors, but there’s some decent coverage for the dots, as well as on the face.  It’s all pretty basic stuff, but it works, and it suits his design.  Polka Dot Man is packed with an alternate gauntlet piece in the open configuration, as well as a polka dots effects piece, a display stand, a collector’s card, and two pieces to King Shark.  All in all, that’s a pretty good load out.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’m iffy on McFarlane’s DC stuff, and I’m iffy on DC movie based stuff, but I was really pumped for this movie, and I was likewise really pumped for this set of figures.  Polka Dot Man was definitely at the top of my list (for the singles, at least), and this figure does not disappoint me.  He’s a solid core figure with enough extras to cover what you need to make the figure work.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2874: Batman Beyond

BATMAN BEYOND

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

“Terry McGinnis was just an ordinary teenager, until his father was mysteriously killed.  Suspecting foul play, Terry meets an older, bitter Bruce Wayne and learns a secret hidden for decades.  When Bruce refuses to help, Terry steals and dons a high-tech, tricked-out Batsuit in a quest to avenge his father’s death as Batman”

Though he had trouble getting any accurate figures during the run of his show, Batman Beyond has done a little bit better in the years that have followed.  Since the character was worked into the DC comics universe proper, he’s been treated to a few more figures, typically a bit more realistic in design.  Most recently, he’s found his way into McFarlane’s run with the brand, you know, because he’s a Batman.  It’s really easy to get Batman variants out there when it’s, like 75% of your output.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Batman Beyond is his own solo release in McFarlane’s DC Multiverse line.  A slightly tweaked version showed up first as a Target-exclusive, and the main release, which I’m looking at here, started showing up everywhere else in the last month or two.  The figure stands about 6 3/4 inches tall and he has 38 points of articulation, as well as moving wings.  The articulation scheme here is essentially the same as all the other Multiverse figures from McFarlane.  It’s not a terrible set-up.  Some of the joints are a little tighter than I’d like, and some of the joints are a little more obvious than I’d like.  I especially am not a real fan of how the arms and legs look when the elbows and knees are bent.  Overall, they’re not the worst, though.  BB’s sculpt is a new one, largely shared with the Target-version, of course.  It’s a more realistically proportioned version of the character, which might seem the obvious outcome at first, but then you have to remember the “animated” style monstrosities that were in the first assortment of the line, and that will make you eternally grateful that they went realistic here.  Of course, it’s still a McFarlane translation of the design, so that means there’s a bunch of additional details that do sort of muck up the sleek design that the original has.  It’s not quite as bad as some of their other offerings, and they do at least generally follow the flow of the design, so it’s not terrible.  The only thing I’m not crazy about on the main body is the gauntlets, which go for more Arkham game-style Batman gauntlets, and just don’t work quite as well.  The other thing I’m not so big on?  The wings.  It’s not that the wings are there, mind you; Mattel and DCD both left them off entirely on their first goes, and that was a letdown.  What frustrates me is that they’re not removable, because in a case of classic McFarlane overengineering, there’s a very specific joint for them built into the back of the figure.  A simple peg joint would have allowed them to be removed, and they would have functioned essentially the same way.  As it stands, they can’t be removed, just folded down, which means he’s not accurate to how the character looked for the vast majority of his time.  His paint work is decent enough.  There’s not a ton to it, but that’s accurate.  I appreciate that they didn’t over do the paint, though.  That’s always a plus.  BB is packed with a flight stand, two sets of hands (open gesture and gripping), flight effects, and a batarang.  The batarang is, notably, *not* a Beyond Batarang, which is annoying, since the Target release got the proper one.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve effectively been on the hunt for the definitive Batman Beyond since the show came out.  Every time a new one is released, I hope that one might be the one that does it, and every time, I feel a bit let down, because there’s just always something that throws them off.  Sadly, this one continues the trend.  Where those wings removeable, he’d be really close, but with them permanently attached, it definitely holds him back a bit in my book.  I mean, I do still like him, but I wish I liked him more.

Thanks to my sponsors over at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure to review.  If you’re looking for cool toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2717: Wonder Woman – Last Knight on Earth

WONDER WOMAN — LAST KNIGHT ON EARTH

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE TOYS)

“The world has been destroyed. The Super Heroes lost, and a new evil by the name of Omega has taken over what’s left. Now, 20 years in the future, Wonder Woman leads a faction of heroes and survivors living underground known as the New Amazons. Hiding from the world above in order to stay alive, Diana and her band of warriors must choose between retreating deeper beneath the Earth’s surface or fighting for a better tomorrow.”

Have I mentioned the Batman-centric nature of McFarlane’s DC output?  Yes.  Yes, I have.  As has everyone else.  Many times.  It’s not new or different, and at this point, none of us should be surprised by each subsequent Batman he adds.  Let’s just try to enjoy the few not-Batman figures we get mixed in, right?  After initially swearing off them, the latest assortment adds up to a Build-A-Figure, and is all based on Snyder and Capullo’s “Batman: The Last Knight on Earth.”  In the story, most of the other super heroes are dead, so there’s not a lot of room for others in the toys, but Wonder Woman serves as a notable player in the whole thing, and found herself included in the first line-up.  Dig it.  That’s gonna be the one I’m looking at.  Dig it again.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Wonder Woman is one of the four figures in the latest Build-A-Thing assortment of DC Multiverse, all patterned on “Last Knight.”  They were officially slated for the end of March, but starting showing up in a few places towards the end of February.  Wonder Woman and Scarecrow are the two lighter packed figures in the set, which makes sense thematically, I suppose.  The figure’s quite tall, and almost 7 1/2 inches tall, and she has 38 points of articulation.  At this point, the articulation scheme for the McFarlane DC figures is pretty set, so Wonder Woman kind of follows that set-up.  She’s got a pretty solid range of motion on most of the joints, and in general I found her easier to pose than most of the other McFarlane figures I’ve grabbed.  Wonder Woman’s sculpt is another all-new piece, patterned on Greg Capullo’s illustrations of the character from the book.  McFarlane’s no doubt got some experience translating Capullo’s art into three dimensions, so it does overall work out a bit better than, say, their go at Jim Lee’s style with Superman.  That being said, it’s not quite as faithful a recreation of Capullo’s art as the DCC figures from a few years back, and is definitely a bit more in line with McFarlane’s house style.  The figure seems to be an earlier-in-the-story Wonder Woman, since she’s lacking the scarring on her face.  Oddly, she’s also sporting some stubble on the non-mohawk portions of her head, which she never really has in-story.  Another symptom of that house style peaking through.  Overall, it’s not a bad piece of work.  She hasn’t had any unnecessary extra details added, apart from the stubble, and the costume seems to match well with Capullo’s design.  The general proportions, while certainly stylized, aren’t as wonky as some of the prior figures, and the detail work is pretty solid.  The texturing on the cape in particular is quite impressive.  That said, there’s some really rough flashing on the cape for my figure, which, given the ragged nature of the design, isn’t immediately noticeable, but is still really sloppy for a professionally produced figure.  On the plus side, her paint work is all pretty clean.  The base work’s all there and rather decent for the most part.  There’s some slight mismatch between the molded fleshtone that makes up the bulk of the figure, and the tiny bit that’s painted on the skirt piece, and I also question why they’ve molded the lower knee joints in flesh color instead of the darker red of the boots.  Otherwise, it’s nice work.  Wonder Woman is packed with her sword and a stand (which she needs, because she struggles to stand on her own), as well as the arms of the Bane Build-A-Figure, which I don’t have.  It’s a shame she didn’t get the Doctor Fate helmet as well, but I guess she’s got the basics.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I didn’t really intend to get this figure.  I mean, she’s got a decent look to her, and I was mildly intrigued, but not enough to justify the whole cost of purchase.  Max, on the other hand, was already planning to buy the other three, and decided to grab Wonder Woman to finish out the Bane figure.  He wasn’t really feeling Wonder Woman, so I ended up splitting the package with him, and took the Wonder Woman on her own.  She’s another one of those designs that’s really up McFarlane’s alley, and that results in her being another pretty strong figure.  And she’s not even a Batman.

#2655: Batman Earth -32

BATMAN EARTH -32

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

In DC’s Dark Multiverse, on Earth -32, the green light of will has twisted an angry Bruce Wayne into something very dark and sinister. After the murder of his parents in Crime Alley, young Bruce is gifted with a Green Lantern ring, which allows him to fly and to generate deadly hard-light energy constructs. With no Alfred Pennyworth to guide him, he soon swallows his fear and pain and lets the void that remains corrupt him and the ring, unleashing a wave of darkness across his world, and now ours, as The Dawnbreaker.”

There’s no denying that McFarlane’s DC output for the last year has been rather Batman-centric.  So Batman centric that the storyline they’ve been most faithfully focusing on has been “Dark Knights: Metal”, a story that focusses in on “what if all of the non-Batman characters were also Batman?”  One of the Batman-ed characters is Green Lantern, and, to be honest, the Green Lantern/Batman mash-up isn’t actually a new concept.  It’s something DC’s been flirting with for a while in differing capacities, and this is just the most recent version, I guess.  It could be worse, really.  Anyway, it got a toy, and Green Lantern and action figure are two things that are rather up my alley, so here I am.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Batman of Earth -32 is part of the first proper “Dark Knights: Metal”-themed assortment of DC Multiverse figures.  Where it falls in the actually numbering scheme is something that’s lost on me, but I do know it hit right at the end of 2020, for what it’s worth.  This and The Grim Knight are the lighter packed figures in the line-up, at just one of each per case.  The figure stands 7 1/4 inches tall and he has 39 points of articulation.  His articulation scheme is similar to the Superman and Nightwing figures.  It’s definitely more restricted on the neck, torso, and hips.  The neck’s due to the costume design, which is understandable, but the torso and hips is just down to poor implementation.  For the most part, though, it’s a decent layout.  The sculpt is an all-new piece, based on  Jason Fabok’s art from the cover of Batman The Dawnbreaker #1, which is certainly the most distinctive piece of art for the character.  It also has the unintended bonus of making him fit in pretty well with the DC Essentials figures from DC Collectibles, since those are based on Fabok’s artwork too.  Of course, it being a McFarlane product, there’s a certain level of McFarlane-izing going on.  In this figure’s case it means he’s a little bit lankier than the illustration, and falls into the same territory as a lot of McFarlane’s DC figures of adding a lot of piping and other smaller costume details that aren’t present in the source material.  It makes him a little busier than the comics design.  It’s not as bad here as on more simplified designs like Superman and Nightwing, but I still do wonder why they feel the need to keep busying everything up.  Also, for some reason, the GL-logo is different from every piece of artwork I was able to find of the character.  It’s missing the circle around the actual lantern.  I don’t dislike it, but it’s another case of change for the sake of change.  One area that they got down pretty spot-on is the head sculpt.  It’s got the lopsided sneer that the character frequently sports, which is a rather distinctive appearance.  Dawnbreaker’s paint work is fairly decent.  It’s an interesting mix of differing greens.  There are some nice differences in sheen, and I definitely dig the metallic greens.  Dawnbreaker includes a construct shaped like some eldritch abomination bat/octopus thing, a flight stand, and a collector’s card.  The construct’s a lot of fun, but I do wish it were a little more secure on the figure’s arm.  Still, it’s a cool visual, as is using the flight stand to allow him to hover off the ground.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

My initial experience with McFarlane’s DC figures wasn’t super impressive or confidence inspiring, so I haven’t really been following them since.  However, I knew I’d have a hard time saying no to this figure when it was shown off, and sure enough, when I saw it in person, I was game.  It’s a design that feels really up McFarlane’s alley, and they did a pretty decent job of capturing it in toy form.  There are some definite flaws, but in general, this figure works out better than previous offeringsm and I’m much happier this time.

Thanks to my sponsors at All Time Toys for setting me up with this figure for review.  If you’re looking for toys both old and new, please check out their website and their eBay storefront.

#2639: Cyborg

CYBORG

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

“Half robot, Vic Stone is a high-tech genius and valued member of Robin’s Teen Titans team. Cyborg not only designs and engineers T-vehicles and excels at video games, he’s also a great cook–specializing in spaghetti and burgers!”

At the beginning of the entire decade of time that made up the year 2020, the DC Comics license passed from Mattel into the hands of both Spin Master and McFarlane Toys.  Spin Master’s been sticking more to the “toys” side of things, and have generally wound up resonating far more with me, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t attempted to give McFarlane’s more “collector” oriented line its fair shot as well.  One of the problems I’ve been having with the McFarlane stuff is how Batman-centric its been, so I’ve been trying to keep my eye out for cool not-Batman stuff.  The most recent assortment of figures has a little bit of that, including today’s focus figure, Cyborg!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Cyborg is part of McFarlane’s DC Multiverse line.  As far as wave/series/assortment, I’d honestly be hard-pressed to tell you, because there hasn’t really been any clear delineation, and releases have been hitting all over the place.  He’s not from Series 1, and that’s the best I can hone in on.  So far, the DC Multiverse stuff has all been drawn from specific source material, and in the case of Cyborg, he’s based on the 2003 Teen Titans cartoon.  He’s the first figure based on the show, and so far the only one to be solicited.  The figure stands 7 inches tall and he has 31 points of articulation.  With the McFarlane stuff, there’s been a bit of an issue on the articulation front; there are plenty of points of movement, but range isn’t always the best.  Cyborg improves a bit over the prior Multiverse figures I’ve had, but I did find the arms to still be rather restricted, especially at the elbows.  Also, while the shoulders have decent range, they’re a little bit on the loose side for my figure.  They can hold poses fine right now, but I’m a bit concerned about the long-term integrity of the joints.  Cyborg’s sculpt is an all-new affair, and compared to the animated sculpts of the first assortment, it’s actually a marked improvement.  I don’t know if it’s just the change in style between the shows, but they’ve managed to get a much closer recreation of Cyborg’s cartoon design than any of the other three animated figures.  It’s still not really in scale with anything (though he does look okay with some of the larger Bandai figures), as has been a recurring issue with the McFarlane stuff, but internally, it’s at least got solid proportions and does an okay job replicating the design.  I quite like the way they’ve handled the blue sections of the cybernetics, being white plastic with the detailing sculpted in, and then a clear blue plastic shell over top.  It works very well, and solves a problem that other animated Cyborgs have never quite gotten down.  In terms of paint, he’s pretty basic.  There are a few errant marks on the white sections, but for the most part it look okay.  It’s appropriately bright, and refrains from McFarlane’s tendency to go a little murkier, so it’s not bad.  Cyborg is packed with an extra hand in sonic cannon configuration, plus one of the small black disc stands, and a card.  The cannon piece is definitely the coolest part, and swaps out for the hand without much trouble.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I’ve not really been picking up any of the McFarlane figures, because I really just wasn’t that impressed by the three I had already gotten.  I did like the look of this guy when his prototype was shown off, but was planning to refrain from getting him largely because I honestly don’t trust Todd and company to actually get the whole team line-up out.  At most I’m expecting to get a Robin and *maybe* a Beast Boy, but I can’t see anything beyond that, which does make the prospect of this figure weird to say the least.  I wound up getting this one from Cheyenne and her parents, and it’s honestly a pretty strong figure, and one I’m pretty glad I ultimately got.  Hopefully, I’m proved wrong on the team line-up, but for now, he does look pretty nice with my Bandai Speedy figure.

#2371: Harley Quinn

HARLEY QUINN

DC MULTIVERSE (MCFARLANE)

“When she first met The Joker, Dr. Harleen Quinzel was his psychiatrist at Arkham Asylum.  Instead of treating her patient, she fell in love with him and became his prankster partner in crime known as Harley Quinn.  Although mentally unhinged, Harley is highly intelligent.  She’s a skilled gymnast and her agility makes her an adept fighter.  Like The Joker, she uses a variety of weaponized gag props in her chaos-creating crimes.”

Hey, remember how McFarlane has the DC license now?  And remember how Spin Master also has it?  And how I’m really leaning into that Spin Master curve?  Well, it could only last for so long, I suppose.  In an effort to make my way through some of the stuff sitting on my “to review” pile, I’m grabbing a few things I’ve kind of been putting off.  Today’s entry is definitely in the “putting it off” category.  Guess I can’t put it off any further.  Okay, here’s Harley Quinn.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Harley Quinn is part the…well, still technically the first assortment of McFarlane’s DC Multiverse line, but exactly where she falls in that is a little debatable.  She’s not part of the Superman/Batman portion that we first saw, and she’s not part of the more Bat-family-themed build-a-vehicle assortment that Nightwing was in.  Technically, she was shown off alongside Green Arrow from Arrow and Green Lantern from JLU, neither of whom she really ties in with all that well.  It hasn’t got any less confusing since I reviewed Nightwing is the general theme of what I’m getting at here.  Harley is, according to the box anyway, based on her appearance in her self-titled miniseries from the comics, which introduced her into the mainstream DCU.  I’ll get to that.  The figure stands just over 7 inches tall and has 35 points of articulation.  Compared to the rest of the line, Harley’s not only too tall; she’s just flat out too big.  She’s not actually taller than Nightwing and Superman, but thanks to the way the parts of her body are scaled internally, she looks like she’s taller than they are.  It’s really the head that throws things off the most, because it’s so large.  Also?  Clearly not based on her main DCU design.  That head’s unquestionably meant to be an animated-style Harley, and there’s nothing about it that indicates otherwise.  Given they were already doing actual animation-based figures in the strange collection of figures that makes up “Series 1”, I’m not sure why they didn’t just say she was an animated Harley.  Okay, actually I kinda do get why, but that’ll come up later.  Whatever the case, the head’s not a great piece, even for an animated look, because it’s kinda off-model for any version of Harley we’ve seen before.  Below the neck, Harley suddenly doesn’t seem quite as animation-styled, but I wouldn’t really classify it as realistic either.  There’s a definite style there, but whose I couldn’t really say.  The part that really bugs me is the shoes, which are the usual pixie shoes, but inexplicably have high heels on them?  I don’t know how that works, and I don’t want to.  Harley in high-heels just feels wrong to me, though.  Of the three McFarlane DC figures I’ve looked at, Harley’s probably got the most basic paint scheme.  I don’t know that I’d call it “cleaner”, because the actual application is kinda messy.  There’s a noticeably splotch of white on the left shoulder, and in general the transitions between colors aren’t very clean.  It’s not terrible, though, and I don’t know that it’s really messier than the other two; there’s just less extra work to distract from the errors.  Harley is packed with a mallet, a gun with a “Bang” flag, a display stand, and a collector’s card.  The mallet is the weirdest part, because it’s definitely meant to be more real world, and therefore doesn’t fit with the rest of the figure at all.  Sure, there’s a lot of nice work on it, but why does it come with *this* figure?

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

The animated figures from Multiverse kind of repulse me, and though she’s not technically an animated figure, so does Harley.  From the prototype shots, I knew I didn’t like her, and in person that didn’t change.  So, why do I have her?  It’s Max’s fault.  He bought her because he decided to buy a whole set of them, and after opening her up and messing with her for a bit, he decided he didn’t really need to keep her, and passed her along to me for the purposes of reviewing.  There it is Max.  I reviewed her.  I hope you’re happy.  Ultimately, I’m cooling on this whole McFarlane DC thing pretty quickly.  While Superman and Nightwing held my interest at first, I ultimately don’t have much to say about them a month after the fact.  And a month with Harley sitting on the shelf waiting to be reviewed did nothing to really make me like her any more than I did when I first looked at her.