ELECTRONIC B-9 ROBOT — ANTI-MATTER
LOST IN SPACE (DST)
For Day 8 of my post-Christmas reviews, I’m switching gears and taking a look at a property I’ve only looked at a few scant times before, albeit one of my personal favorites, Lost In Space. The last time I looked at something Lost In Space-related, it was one of the Trendmasters figures from the less than stellar 1998 movie. Let’s try and do a bit better, shall we?
Instead, let’s turn to 1967. It was the year of parallel universe stories. Everyone remembers Star Trek’s “Mirror Mirror,” but all the cool kids remember that year’s *other* mirror universe story, Lost In Space’s “The Anti-Matter Man.” These days, Lost In Space toys are pretty much limited to variations of the Robot, and the only merchandise from this episode follows suit. There are not Anti-Matter John and Don to be found, but we did get the slightly less “goody-goody” incarnation of the B-9 Robot (who wasn’t quite so “B-9” in the Anti-Matter world), which I’ll be looking at today!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
The Anti-Matter Robot is one of three available decos for Diamond Select Toys’ Electronic B-9 Robot. This particular version was a Previews Exclusive and was released late last fall. The figure stands 11 inches tall, has 8 points of articulation, bendable arms, and moving wheels on his base. His sculpt (which is shared by all three Electronic B-9s) is a solid recreation of his design from the show. It’s probably one of the closest recreations we’ve seen, so kudos to DST for that. Some of the details are a little on the soft side, especially on the “feet.” There are also some obvious points of assembly on the clear sections of his head. For the dome, it’s not a big deal, since it’s mostly hidden by the mechanics within, but for the top of his torso, it’s a little more annoying. For the price, it’s not unreasonable, but it’s still a slight tick against the figure. I do also wish the “mouth” on my figure was a bit better seated; it’s a bit crooked on mine, and that makes him look a little less like his on-screen counterpart, and just makes the figure look a lot cheaper in general. While I appreciate the design of the arms, and really do appreciate how much movement you can get out of them, I do feel like the ability to slide them back and forth as seen in the show would have added a lot to the figure. However, I suspect the lack of said movement may be tied to the presence of the electronics within the body. Since the electronics were a major selling point of the figure, I can understand the need for some compromises. As I noted above, the main difference between this figure and the basic B-9 Robot is paint. The three Anti-Matter characters we see in the episode are all denoted as such by their black and while color schemes. Overall, the paint is pretty good, but there’s one notable inaccuracy; the colors on his right hand and arm actually reversed. The arms should both match in color, and the hands should be black and grey. I’m not sure why they get the colors wrong, but the same issue is present on the Vinimate version of this guy. Maybe it was a licensing thing? The Robot includes no accessories, but he does have some cool electronic features. When turned on, he replicates the blinking light effects the Robot always had going in the show, and when the button on his side is pressed, he’ll say one of twelve phrases from “The Anti-Matter Man” (okay, they actually cheated it a bit. I don’t think the Anti-Matter Robot actually has twelve phrases in the one scene in which he appears, so the last four phrases are just from the first episode). It’s a much cooler feature than I was expecting!
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Okay, so there’s kind of a funny story to this guy. My dad’s a huge Lost In Space fan, and is the whole reason I even know of the show’s existence. As I’ve noted in previous reviews, the merchandise for the show isn’t as plentiful as you might hope, but I do my best to find him as many exciting new figures as I can. Since the Anti-Matter version of the Robot hasn’t gotten a toy before, I thought it would make for a pretty awesome Christmas gift for him. “But, Ethan, if you bought it for your dad, why are you reviewing it?” Well, this isn’t the one I bought for my dad. A day or so after I ordered it for him, he called me from a small toy store just outside of Philcon, and asked about this figure, saying he’d just seen someone buy the last one at said store. I took this as a sign that he thought it cool and I’d chosen the gift well, and even went so far as to talk it up a bit. Cut to Christmas morning, when I opened up this figure, and immediately started laughing, and handed my dad his present, which is when he joined in on the laughing. See, he had taken my interest in the figure as a sign that *I* wanted it, and had contacted our local comic book store to order me one, completely unaware that I was getting it for him. I honestly couldn’t be happier; I love the Robot and I quite enjoy this particular episode, so I’m glad to have my own. And now I’ve also got this amusing story of that time my dad and I bought each other the same Christmas gift to go along with it!