#1273: Green Lantern

GREEN LANTERN

SUPER FRIENDS (FIGURES TOY COMPANY)

Okay, I just had eight solid days of Marvel, how about something else?  It seems only fair to give DC a shot at a review, right?  DC doesn’t really show up here as often as Marvel.  It’s not that I don’t like DC; in fact, I used to be more of a DC guy than a Marvel guy, largely due to DC’s far superior animation presence.  Back in the day, my very favorite super hero was Green Lantern—Hal Jordan, specifically.  And, if I wanted to see him in animation, my only real option was Challenge of the Superfriends.  Not exactly high art, but it still influenced everything that came after (and I’ll take it over the DCEU any day).  While Super Friends got no direct tie-in toys when the show was still on the air, the old Mego figures were a pretty good substitute.  More recently, someone had the absolutely brilliant idea of tying those two styles together officially, offering some of the show’s characters that never got official Mego figures.  A few months ago, I looked at show-original characters the Wonder Twins, and today I’ll be looking at my main man Hal today!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Green Lantern was released in Series 4 of Figures Toy Company’s Super Friends line, alongside the Super Friends versions of Cheetah, Bizarro, and Toyman.  As with the previously reviewed Wonder Twins, Hal is a merging of his Super Friends design and the ‘70s Mego aesthetic.  The figure stands about 8 inches tall and he has 14 points of articulation.  He’s built on the Type 2 male body, with modified arms to allow for the attachment of gloved hands.  The quality of this body is more or less the same as Zan’s, but with less issues on the shoulder movement, which is a plus.  Hal makes use of a unique head and hands.  The head isn’t quite as accurate as the ones on Zan and Jayna, but it’s still pretty good.  The face is actually pretty accurate; it’s mostly the hair that throws it off.  It seems a little too close to the head; Super Friends Hal’s hair was pretty bouncy.  That being said, it fits in quite nicely with the old Mego stuff, which is really the point.  The hands are very similar to the ones seen on Zan, albeit with the gestures swapped.  They’re not technically the right style of gloves, but they’re close enough to work.  And, they’re very nicely sculpted, and that’s the important thing.  They also stay on better than Zan’s did, a definite plus.  Hal’s costume is made up of a cloth jumpsuit and a pair of rubber boots.  The tailoring on the costume is quite nice, and the velcro is a lot better than it usually is at this scale.  The boots are a little clunky, but not horribly so; it’s mostly just at the tops.   The figure’s got some paintwork on the head, which is pretty decent overall.  There’s a bit of slight bleed over, especially on the edges of the mask, however it’s mostly pretty minor.  Also, it’s not exclusively paint, but the color scheme on this figure is a really good match for Hal’s colors on the show; one of the problems with DC Direct’s (otherwise pretty cool) Super Friends figures was that they largely just painted the figures like their normal comics counterparts.  FTC has given Hal the proper slightly greyed-out green he always had on the show.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As a kid, I used to play with my Dad’s old Mego figures when I would spend the day at my grandparents’ house.  It gave me an appreciation of the style that most collectors my age wouldn’t have.  However, the one big hole in the collection for me (and every other DC fan) was Green Lantern.  Back before the whole return of Mego craze, I actually assembled my own custom GL Mego using report parts.  I also picked up Mattel’s Retro Action figure when he was released.  I like both of them, but they’re sort of their own thing, removed from the actual Megos.  My parents picked this guy up for me from Midtown Comics while they were there for a trip a couple of months ago.  He feels a lot more like an authentic Mego than the prior figures, which I really dig.  He’s definitely aimed at a very particular demographic, but if that’s you, this is a pretty nifty figure!

#1168: Wonder Twins

ZAN, JAYNA, & GLEEK

SUPER FRIENDS (FIGURES TOY COMPANY)

wondertwins1

Wonder Twin powers activate!  Form of: an action figure review!

Hey guys, so here we are on day two of the post-Christmas reviews.  As I noted in the intro, this review is based around the Wonder Twins, that wacky duo (and their pet space monkey) who were sort of haphazardly shoved into the Justice League membership during the second season of Super Friends.  Of all the Super Friends-original characters, the Wonder Twins are probably the most enduring, likely due to being the only ones who didn’t feel like a pretty direct rip-off of something else (okay, yes, they were just Wendy & Marvin with powers, but lets not talk about that too much).  The duo were originally slated to get action figures during Kenner’s DC Super Powers line in the ‘80s, but the line ended before they could get past the drawing board.  They did eventually make it into plastic form as an exclusive two-pack in Mattel’s DC Universe Classics line, but, well, that was Mattel, so you can probably guess the whole thing didn’t go particularly smoothly.  Most recently, they’ve gotten another shot at action figure glory courtesy of Figures Toy Company.  I’ll be taking a look at those figures today!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Zan, Jayna, and their pet monkey Gleek were released as a special three-pack in Figures Toy Company’s Super Friends line.  The line as a whole is patterned after Mego’s figures from the ‘70s, but with some of the more specific design elements coming straight from the Super Friends model sheets.

ZAN

wondertwins2Form of: Zan!  The male Wonder Twin is built on the standard Mego Type 2 style body.  Unlike the Dr. Mego bodies used by DST and Biff Bang Pow or the Big Jim-styled bodies from Mattel, Figures Toy Company’s version of the body doesn’t have any changes or improvements; the body is pretty much the same quality as the old ‘70s bodies.  This is okay from a consistency standpoint (since they’ll fit right in with the vintage figures), but means that the quality is that of a $4 action figure from the mid-70s, rather than a $20-30 figure from the last year, which can be slightly frustrating.  Moving past that, Zan stands about 8 inches tall and has 14 points of articulation.  As far as the body sculpt, he’s got a unique head and hands.  The head is a pretty decent summation of his animated design (certainly closer than Mattel’s attempt), and also fits pretty well with existing Mego figures.  The hands are a bit of a departure from the usual Mego style; they’re certainly nicely enough in terms of sculpt, but they’re made of a rather rubbery material, which makes they pop off the wrists at the slightest touch, and are rather difficult to get back in place.  In terms of costume, Zan has a jumpsuit with a pleather collar, a belt, and a pair of boots. The pieces mostly fit well enough; the collar could probably be a little better shaping wise, but it fits the style, and you can mess with it to make it look a little more presentable.  The one weird thing about the costume is the belt.  Clearly, they wanted Zan, Jayna, and Gleek to all be able to wear the same belt, so it’s sort of this one-size-fits-all thing, resulting in all three belts having an extra length running from the back, almost like an oddly placed tail.  One last thing: I feel I should note that the colors of the boots, gloves, and belt do all match in person, despite what it may look like on the photos.

JAYNA

wondertwins3Shape of: Jayna!  Jayne here is built on the standard female body, which seems rather oddly shaped if I’m honest.  It’s not awful, but not quite as solid as the male version.  It seems Jayna’s body is just a bit to tightly strung in the middle as well, which permanently leaves her with this sort of hunch.  It’s a bit odd.  Jayne is assembled pretty much exactly the same as her brother; sculpted head and hands, cloth costume with pleather collar, and rubber belt and boots.  The head is another pretty good piece, and looks well enough like Jayna.  The hands seem to be a slight improvement over Zan’s, as I had no issues with them falling off on her.  The issue with the belt, however, is even more noticeable with Jayna, thanks to her even smaller waist.  Her costume also seems to bunch up a bit more than Zan’s, but that’s an issue prevalent with Mego figures in general.  Not a whole lot more to say here, since she’s so similar to her brother.

GLEEK

wondertwins4Gleek doesn’t have a part of the catchphrase, so no witty intro there.  He does break from the trend in this set by not using one of the Mego bodies; instead, he gets an all-new body, designed to fit his more simian appearance.  The figure stands about 3 inches tall and he has 5 points of articulation and a bendable tail.  Glenn’s sculpt is pretty solid, and actually does a very good job of capturing his design from he show.  The head in particular is quite spot on.  His little booties are sculpted onto the body, but the rest of the costume is tailored, so as to match with the twins.  He’s got a jumpsuit, a cape, and the same belt as the other two (albeit slightly differently colored).  The costume is on the baggy side, but it doesn’t look terrible. On the plus side, the cape is good for hiding the excess length of belt, thus eliminating the main problem with the other two figures’ costumes.  None of the figures in this set include any extras, but I feel Gleek is hit the hardest by this, since the bucket he always had on hand to carry Zan in his water form seems like a pretty obvious missing piece.  Guess I’ll have to find my own.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Like yesterday’s set, these guys were a Christmas gift from my Grandmother.  It’s actually quite fitting, since the whole reason I’m familiar with Megos at all is because I played with my dad’s old figures when I would stay at her house, frequently watching taped episodes of cartoons such as Super Friends.  Interestingly enough, while a lot of people hated the Wonder Twins, I actually always liked them and was quite frustrated by how the Mattel versions were handled.  I was quite happy to actually get the duo and Gleek in figure form.  I won’t lie, these figures aren’t without their sets of issues.  If you aren’t firmly a Mego fan, these won’t be for you.  That being said, this is a very prominent example of the whole being better than the sum of its parts.  These figures didn’t disappoint me.