#0681: Mercury

MERCURY

DC UNIVERSE CLASSICS

MercuryDCUC1

It’s been 160 reviews since my last DC Universe Classics review. Guess I’ll fix that then. So, one of the coolest things about DC Universe Classics was just how obscure they went with the line. For all the crap I give Mattel about their various practices, they built a successful line that ran for 21 series and gave us the likes of Kamandi and Cyclotron. That’s downright impressive. It is also the only DC line to date to give us a full line-up of the Metal Men, who are one of DC’s cooler off-kilter teams from the 60s. So, let’s look at the team’s resident jerk with a heart of jerk, Mercury. He’s the only metal who’s liquid at room temperature!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

MercuryDCUC2Mercury was released as part of the 16th Series of DC Universe Classics. He was the third member of the Metal Men to be released, and the last member to be released at retail. Way to go Mercury, you ruined it for everybody. The figure is 6 ¼ inches tall and has 29 points of articulation. Mercury was another figure built on the skinny buck. I know that the first “skinny” character was Deadman in Series 11, but I think 16 was the first series to use this slightly improved iteration of the body. While he uses the base as a starting point, Mercury actually has a fair number of non-standard parts. The best piece if the figure is definitely the head, which does a fantastic job of capturing the character. His expression is just perfect for Mercury, and they’ve really nailed the exaggerated proportions. The extended nose is a separate piece from the face, so there’s a noticeable seam if you look closely, but from a normal viewing distance, it’s unnoticeable. The rest of the body works pretty well for Mercury; a lot of the wackier proportions that looked out of place on other characters look perfect here. Mercury’s paintwork is somewhat deceptive. The previous two Metal Men were just straight metallic colors, so when I first saw Mercury, I was disappointed that he was just a flat red. But, after taking him out of the package, I realized the red was actually pearlescent, which is actually really impressive looking, and gives him a nice unique feel. Mercury included an extra hand made to look like it’s morphing into a giant pair of scissors, which is a pretty awesome way of showcasing his powers (they’re even articulated!). He also included the torso of Bane, the Collect-N-Connect for Series 16.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Series 16 was one of the few series of DC Universe Classics that I found mostly in one shot at retail. However, I didn’t get the first Mercury I found; it went to my Dad, who’s a bigger Metal Men fan then I. Fortunately, I came across another Mercury not long after, and here he is. For me, Mercury represents some of the best work DCUC had to offer. He’s a fun, obscure character, on the right body, with a superb head sculpt, solid paintwork, and a well-executed accessory.

Advertisements

#0421: Gold

GOLD

DC UNIVERSE CLASSICS

DC Universe Classics, through all of its victories, was not without its flaws. When the line ended, more than one team of heroes was left incomplete. That being said, the line did manage to finish up a couple of teams. One of those teams, the Metal Men, hadn’t seen toy form ever before. That’s not a particularly shocking thing, truth be told. The Metal Men are far from one of DC’s more well-known properties. Still, they managed to all show up in this line, and they serve as an example of the line’s strength in rendering oft-forgotten characters in action figure form.

As a bit of backstory, the Metal Men are a team of robots, constructed by Dr. Will Magnus, who were each made out of a particular metal, animated by a “responsometer” which gave each of them a distinct personality. Today, I’ll be looking at the team’s field leader, Gold, who was the member of the team who best fit the traditional hero archetype.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Gold was a figure in Series 14 of DC Universe Classics. Series 14 was the third Walmart exclusive series in the line, and it fell somewhere in between the impossible to find Series 5 and the rather plentiful Series 10 in terms of availability. Gold is a little over 6 inches in height and he features 23 points of articulation (he was released after Mattel removed the ankle rocker joints). He was the second Metal Man released in the line, following Series 12’s Iron. The figure makes use of the mid-size male buck as a starting point, with a new head, forearms, and calves, as well as a set of die-cast hands (first used on Iron), and an add-on for the front of his torso. The mid-size body is a good fit for Gold, so it was well chosen. The new pieces match up pretty well with the body, while giving him some individual flair. The head is the only piece to sport any flaws. It’s not a bad sculpt, but it doesn’t seem quite right for Gold; he should look more confident and self-assured. The hands being actual metal is cool, though the fact that they were originally sculpted for Iron means that they have some dings and things that aren’t quite right for Gold. Gold’s paint is rather straight-forward. He’s painted from head to toe with gold paint. The decision to use paint rather than gold plastic was a wise choice, as the end result is much cleaner. In addition, he also features a few details for his symbol on his head and torso, as well as his eyes. The eyes are rather clean, but the symbols are a slight bit off center. Gold included two hand attachments: a buzz saw and a pick axe. Both are well done, but the buzz saw really stands out, just for the sheer amount of imagination that went into it. If you look closely, you can see that it actually looks like a stretched out version of his hand is holding the blade. It’s a great touch. Gold also included the left leg of the series Collect-N-Connect, Ultra Humanite, who you can read about here.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

After finding Iron at a reduced price, I was all on board for getting Gold when he was released. My dad is a pretty big fan of the Metal Men, so this was one of those instances of both of us wanting a certain figure. So, when we finally came across a set of Series 14, the single Gold figure went to him. I didn’t mind, seeing as I got all the other figures I wanted, but I still hoped to find another. The figure’s price jumped and I figured I’d missed my shot. Fortunately, while checking out The House of Fun, I found a loose Gold amongst their large selection of DCUC figures. I’m happy to have the figure. He’s not perfect, but he’s pretty close, and he’s a key piece of one of DCUC’s greatest legacies.

#0036: Green Lantern – Armored

GREEN LANTERN – ARMORED

JUSTICE (DC DIRECT)

Today’s review is a piece of my quite large Green Lantern collection.  I’m a huge Green Lantern fan, so I have a tendency to buy figures based solely on the fact that they’re Green Lantern.  That’s kinda the case with today’s figure, based on Green Lantern’s armored appearance in Justice.  For those of you who don’t know, Justice was a 12 issue Maxi-Series released by DC Comics a few years ago.  It featured art by Alex Ross and was effectively a more modern day take on Challenge of the Superfriends.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Armored GL was released in the sixth series of DC Direct’s Justice line.  He stands just shy of 7 inches tall, and has 15 points of articulation.  Like I said above, he’s based on Green Lantern’s armored appearance from towards the end of the series, when the Justice League has their final showdown with the Legion of Doom.  It’s a neat design, and also very unique, which helps to break up some of the monotony of some of the other Green Lanterns.  The figure is an all new sculpt, which isn’t surprising given there was little room for reuse.  The body is pretty well done, though like many other DC Direct figures of the same time period, he has a slight pre-posed nature to him that doesn’t really work too well with the articulation given.  Granted, it’s nowhere near as bad here as it was on some others, so it doesn’t bother me too much.  There aren’t really any facial features to depict, but the faceplate looks cool.  Also, a really cool touch on the head is the face on the back of it.  In the comic, GL’s suit was actually Metal Men member Iron wrapping himself around GL for protection, so Iron’s face is shown in the back.  It’s a cool feature and adds a lot to the figure, almost making it a two-in-one figure!  The paint on the figure is solid, with little slop or bleed over.  GL’s only accessory was a stand, which is somewhere in a large box of stands from other DC Direct figures.  It was identical to the stand that was included with every other figure in the line.  It looked fine if you only had one figure on display, but any more and it just becomes overly large and cumbersome.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I got Armored GL from my local comic store Cosmic Comix during the store’s annual year end sale.  He was one of about 15 DC direct figures that I bought for 45% off of their original price (which brought his price to about $8.50).  I had held off on the figure before, but for that price it was definitely worth it.  He’s a fairly fun figure and I was glad to add him to my collection!