#2159: Kyle Rayner – Green Lantern

KYLE RAYNER — GREEN LANTERN

DC COMICS MULTIVERSE (MATTEL)

Once a White Lantern and the bearer of seven rings, Kyle Rayner is back to basics under a new Corps as a Green Lantern.”

What do you get when you put together two things that Ethan didn’t used to like?  That’s right, a Mattel Kyle Rayner figure.  My rocky history with Mattel is of course no secret around these parts, but then again most people’s rocky history isn’t much of a secret, I suppose.  What’s slightly more downplayed is my dislike of Kyle.  I mean, he’s a Green Lantern, and he was active during the ’90s; he’s even the star of my favorite episode of Superman: The Animated Series, which is my favorite DC animated property.  What’s not to like?  Well, admittedly, I got a little caught up in the “he replaced Hal Jordan” rage.  As a kid, my first exposure to GL was in Challenge of the Superfriends, where it was Hal, and I was quite confused by this Rayner guy running around in the comics.  Over the years, though, I’ve actually grown to like Kyle quite a bit, which means I’m actually quite excited to get his latest figure!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Kyle Rayner is part of the Lobo Series of DC Comics Multiverse, which is the third assortment following the change to the blue packaging.  This marks the second Kyle we got during Mattel’s tenure.  The first was a fine figure, but fell victim to the late-line tendency for DCUC figures to be in their most recent costume, rather than their most-wanted.  This one goes for Kyle’s classic ’90s costume, or at least the Rebirth recreation of it, which is a solid choice.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 29 points of articulation.  Kyle uses the relaunched line’s equivalent of the old line’s mid-sized male body.  Like the Bizarro figure (who used the larger male body equivalent), this means the Kyle’s a little bit outdated when compared to the line’s more advanced figures.  That said, it’s still a marked improvement over what Mattel was doing a year ago, and makes for a serviceable base body.  Kyle gets a new head, forearms, hands, and knees.  The new parts are fairly decent; nothing amazing or anything, but they recreate his look pretty well, and he’ll fit in with DCUC stuff, as well as Multiverse stuff, so he’s a decent bridge figure.  The paintwork on Kyle is pretty basic, but gets all the important points down.  There’s a touch of fuzz on the edge of the white section on his chest, but aside from that it’s all pretty clean.  Kyle is packed with his power battery and a blast effect piece that goes over his hand.  Standard stuff for a GL, but honestly that’s a step-up from how Mattel’s been handling up to this point.  He also included a piece to the Lobo CnC, but I didn’t get that for reasons I’ll touch on in just a moment.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Despite the issues I may have had with Kyle as a character, in the ’90s a figure in this costume was the only way you were getting a Green Lantern figure, meaning I have quite a soft spot for this design.  Despite my general reservations about Mattel products, I was intrigued by this figure when he was shown off.  Of course, I’ve not once seen a single one of the figures from this assortment at retail, so I didn’t have a chance to buy one.  However, Max really wanted the Batman Beyond figure, as well as having a passing interest in the Lobo, so he and I decided to split a set of the figures from Big Bad Toy Store.  I got the one figure I really wanted, and I’m really quite happy.

#1608: Green Lantern – Kyle Rayner

GREEN LANTERN – KYLE RAYNER

JLA: CLASSIFIED (DC DIRECT)

Despite getting into comics and such in the ‘90s, my first and favorite Green Lantern was *not* the then current holder of the role, Kyle Rayner.  I was aware of Kyle.  I had figures of Kyle (although, my small child brain hadn’t initially processed that he and Hal were not one and the same).  But I didn’t like him much.  At least not originally.  I’ve acquired an appreciation for him in more recent years, and also acquired a few more figures as well.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Kyle was released in Series 2 of DC Direct’s JLA: Classified line.  The whole assortment was ‘90s-themed, so Kyle in his classic costume was a perfect fit.  The figure stands 6 1/2 inches tall and he has 11 points of articulation.  Mobility was never at the forefront on these particular figures, and Kyle’s not really much of an exception.  He’s good for standing there and maybe some slight adjustments to the arms, but not much beyond that.  As with all of the figures in this line, Kyle’s sculpt is based on the style of Ed McGuinness.  I’m not actually sure McGuinness ever drew Kyle in this costume, or even at all, but he does seem to fit MgGuinness’s bolder illustration sensibilities.  I mean, he’s definitely a bit more of a beefcake than Kyle tends to be, but isn’t everyone when illustrated by Ed McGuinness.  He ends up using a lot of the same pieces as the Superman Blue/Red, but does get some unique parts for his head, gloves, and boots.  The head is actually one of my favorites from this subset of figures.  Apart from being perhaps slightly serious in expression for Kyle, it does a solid job of capturing the character, right down to his floppy ‘90s hair, and that goofy crab-mask thing.  Kyle’s paintwork is very clean, and very sharp.  The metallic green is actually a lot better than the sorts of metallic greens that you usually see, being much brighter and thus truer to the comics.  I also dig the slightly pearlescent finish to the white, which contrasts well with the flat black paint on the base body.  Kyle’s only accessory was a JLA: Classified-branded display stand.  A power battery might have been cool, but with the hands both being fists, I guess he couldn’t hold it anyway.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

At the time of this figure’s release, I was pretty well invested in DC Universe Classics, so I wasn’t really picking up any DCD figures.  As such, this guy went under my radar.  I’ve not really seen the figure since, but always was interesting in tracking him down at some point.  I ended up finding him loose at House of Fun this past November.  He’s a rather stylized figure, and certainly requires you to like this particular group of figures.  For me, I quite like him, and I’m happy to add another Kyle figure to my collection.

#0251: Kyle Rayner

KYLE RAYNER

GREEN LANTERN CLASSICS

KyleRayner

To the outside observer, the identity of Green Lantern can be a bit confusing. To date, there have been six humans to bear the name, not to mention the countless aliens that use the name throughout the universe! Which one of them you think of when you hear the name largely depends on when you were introduced to DC. Many DC fans learned about the character through Challenge of the Superfriends, which featured Hal Jordan (my personal favorite). People who were fans of Justice League consider John Stewart to be the definitive GL (with good reason). And people who got pulled into comics in the 90s, well they tend to be fans of a guy called Kyle Rayner. That’s the guy I’ll be taking a look at today.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Kyle was released as part of the first series of Green Lantern Classics, which was a subset of DC Universe Classics intended to tie in with 2011’s Green Lantern. The figure stands a little over 6 inches tall and features 23 points of articulation. He’s based on Kyle’s post-Sinestro Corps War costume, which was the one he was wearing at the time of this figure’s release (I believe he’s still wearing it, though I don’t know for sure. I haven’t read a Green Lantern comicbook in almost two years.) Personally, I think it’s his best costume, so I don’t mind it’s inclusion here, but I can understand why some people were bummed we didn’t get Kyle’s main look from the 90s. Like DC Universe Classics, Green Lantern Classics was built on the buck system. Kyle makes use of the standard medium build body with a new head and a right hand borrowed from DCUC’s John Stewart. The head is a very nice piece, perhaps one of the finest head sculpts in the line. It very nicely captures Kyle’s look. The figure relies on paint to handle most of the costume’s details. The paint does pretty well, although there are a few fuzzy lines here and there, and a noticeable line of black plastic between the greens on the lower torso and the waist. All in all, it looks pretty good, though. Kyle includes a sword construct and a piece of the series’ C-N-C Arkillo. The construct is very impressive, and snaps easily over Kyle’s hand. It’s a great sculpt, and it’s nice to see include a fun accessory for a change.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

As a Green Lantern fan, I’m sure it’s no real surprise that I ended up with this figure. Even so, this is actually one of two figures from the first series of GLC I actually kept. This was another series where my brother and I split buying a series so that one of us could get the C-N-C. He wanted Arkillo, so I helped him finish the set. Not that it took too much pressuring to get me to buy Kyle. Even amongst all the versions of Hal Jordan offered, Kyle may well be my favorite DCUC-styled Green Lantern (although John does give him a run for his money). It’s a great figure, and I’m definitely glad I got one!