#1779: Girl’s Night Out

SUPERGIRL, LIVEWIRE, BATGIRL, HARLEY QUINN, & POISON IVY

BATMAN: ANIMATED (DC COLLECTIBLES)

Female action figures are, on a whole, a rarity.  This stems largely from the days when the line between action figures and dolls was really just that one was marketed to girls and one was marketed to girls.  But, in the 50 years since the term “action figure” was invented by a marketing department, the definitions have become a little more rigid, and opinions on who collects them have slightly changed.  This is my very long-winded way of saying I’m reviewing my second all-female boxed set in the space of three months, which even by modern standards is kind of cool.

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

Supergirl, Livewire, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, and Poison Ivy make up the “Girl’s Night Out” boxed set, released last year as part of DCC’s Batman: Animated line.  They’re based on the New Adventures of Batman episode of the same name, which sees Supergirl and Batgirl teaming up to defeat the combined forces of Livewire, Harley, and Ivy.  Only the Superman characters are actually new to this set, with Batgirl, Harley, and Poison Ivy being re-releases of their single figures from the main line, sans most of their accessories.  Since Harley’s new to me, I’ll be reviewing her here, but for my opinion on the other two, go here and here.

SUPERGIRL

For Superman: The Animated Series’ third season, Supergirl was introduced to open up some new story-telling possibilities.  However, due to DC’s then-standing policies on Clark being the only remaining Kryptonian, they had to money around with her origin a bit.  On the plus side, the character remained more or less the same.  This figure replicates her tweaked animated design.  She stands 5 3/4 inches tall and has 24 points of articulation.  Her sculpt is a rather faithful recreation of the design from the show, which is a real first for Supergirl, as her prior animated figures have all strayed from the proper design.  There are some minor nitpicks that can be made, like her head maybe being a smidge too big for the body.  However, that’s really looking for issues, and comes down more to personal preference than anything else.  Her paintwork is very clean, and the colors are bright and eye-catching.  Definitely a nice departure from this line’s penchant for fuzzy edges on everything.  The biggest downfall of this figure (and this set as a whole) is her lack of any accessories outside of a stand.  At the very least, a spare set of fists seems like it should come standard.

LIVEWIRE

After the successful creation and reception of Harley Quinn and Renee Montoya in Batman: The Animated Series, the creators tried their luck again with Livewire (though Livewire *actually* appeared in the tie-in comic before the show).  While she didn’t quite take off the way those two did, she did still pick up a decent fanbase of her own.  She never actually got a figure during S:TAS’s run, but she’s made out alright since the show’s end.  The figure stands 5 1/2 inches tall and she has 23 points of articulation.  Like Kara, her sculpt is quite a good match for her show appearance.  In fact, I even have trouble finding the minor nitpicks like I did with Supergirl.  The proportions are more balanced, and the lines are all very sharp and clean.  Her paintwork is appropriately monochromatic, and the blues interact well with each other.  There’s a little bit of fuzzy work on the edges, but it’s mostly confined to the “emblem” on her torso, where it’s somewhat acceptable, with her being an energy being and all.  She also is only packed with a display stand.  The lack of extra hands is slightly less frustrating for her, since she doesn’t need them as much, but I’m still not 100% okay with it.

HARLEY QUINN

And speaking of successful creations from the DCAU, here’s the character that’s by far the greatest success story, Harley Quinn!  Outside of Batman himself, she’s actually the character with the most figures in this line, which really speaks to her marketability.  This figure is a re-issue of her second single-carded figure, which was based on her TNBA appearance.  Harley is one of the characters whose two appearances weren’t that different, but they were enough for the eagle-eyed fan to need two distinct figures.  This figure stands 5 3/4 inches tall and she has 19 points of articulation.  Okay, so, first thing’s first, let’s discuss the articulation.  You know ankle joints?  Harley doesn’t have those.  Why not?  Your guess is as good as mine.  Apparently, DCC didn’t feel Harley needed them.  They also didn’t feel she needed the ability to stand either, though I guess that’s linked to the lack of ankle movement.  The point is, it really sucks.  Really, really sucks.  Her sculpt is fine, but it reminds me that I prefer the subtle differences of the B:TAS version.  The big head’s throwing me on this one.  I guess it’s not a terrible offering though.  Her paintwork is pretty decent.  The dual-toned color scheme looks sharp, and the application is overall pretty clean.  Like all of the others in this set, Harley’s only accessory is a display stand.  No extra hands, no weapons of any sort.  Nothing.  Not even the accessories from the prior figure.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

When the Batman: Animated line launched, I was excited by the prospect of a complimentary Superman line.  It didn’t so much come to fruition, and I’ll admit, two of my most wanted figure from said theoretical line only being available in a big boxed set with two figures I already had kind of killed my excitement.  I ended up getting this set at the same time as yesterday’s DKR set, as a birthday present from my parents.  Supergirl and Livewire are very nice figures, slightly held back by a lack of accessories.  The other three are kind of dead weight.  Harley’s easily the worst version of the character from the line, and while Ivy and Batgirl are perfectly fine figures in their own right, having to buy them again, and not getting any accessories the second time around is really lame.  And a note to DCC:  if you’re only going to include a single set of hands, can you at least make it something more useful than the limp open palm?  This set’s begging for some cool fight set-ups, but as it currently stands, all they’re really prepared for is a big slapping fight.

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#1445: Supergirl

SUPERGIRL

DC ICONS (DC COLLECTIBLES)

Remember DC Icons, DC Collectibles’ attempt at creating a DC line to compete with Marvel Legends?   The line was met with praise initially, but the slightly smaller scale DCC chose to go with didn’t sit all that well with a number of fans.  I myself wasn’t too put off by the scale, and picked up a handful of figures from the first two series, but sort of lost touch with the line over the last year and a half.  Too much stuff competing for my money, I suppose.  I’ve finally found my way back, though, and today I’m taking a look at the release that grabbed my attention, Supergirl!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Supergirl is part of Series 5 of DC Icons, figure 25 in the line.  She’s designed by Ivan Reis, and is based on the character’s Rebirth design.  I’m definitely fan of the look; it’s a fairly classic look, with just a few slight variations to give it a bit more polish.  It’s also rather similar to what she’s wearing in the TV show, which I’m sure is no coincidence.  What I like most about this design is that, while it’s a recent look, it still hits all the iconic notes, so we aren’t left with a slightly odd variant that looks out of place, as was the case with Mr. Miracle.  The figure is just over 6 inches tall and she has 29 points of articulation.  Since Series 2, DCC’s been doing a slight creep on the scale, to help bring the line a little closer to the likes of Legends.  Supergirl stands just a touch taller than Flash and GL, who are the tallest Icons currently in my collection.  That means she’s a little out of scale, since Kara’s usually shorter than those two, but she’s close enough that she’ll still fit in alright.  As with Mr. Miracle, Supergirl doesn’t get any shin or thigh swivels, which initially put me off, but I’m happy to see that DCC’s done an overhaul on the way the hip joints work, and has used drop hips similar to those seen on Figuarts releases.  It adds a bit more playability to the figure, and means she isn’t completely without lateral movement on her legs.  Supergirl’s sculpt is quite nicely handled.  She’s clearly inspired by the art in her Rebirth series, but the stylization’s been downplayed a bit so as to help her fit in a little better with the rest of the line.  She looks a little bit older than I tend to think of this incarnation of the character being, but it’s not like she looks decrepit or anything.  The proportions are all fairly nicely balanced, and the details are all clean and sharp.  The articulation is mostly worked in pretty well, though I do find the torso joints stick out a little bit more than I’d like.  The cape is made from a softer rubber and affixed to her shoulders.  It’s not a perfect fit, but it looks fairly decent.  I wouldn’t have minded a second cape that went back over the shoulders, similar to what we’ve seen on some of the Batman Animated figures, since the shoulders are a bit restricted as-is.  The paintwork on Supergirl is pretty solid.  There’s a bit of slop on a few of the transitions, but it’s mostly clean.  The colors are fairly bright, which certainly helps her pop.  Supergirl is packed with an alternate heat-vision head, three pairs of hands, and a flight stand.  The extra head is an interesting idea, though the heat beams look a little bit like Twizzlers, and she’s more than a little frightening with them removed.    The flight stand is a nice thought, but rather a strange execution.  It’s just this big cylinder.  It’s not particularly discrete, and it unfortunately requires you to place all of her weight on her right leg, which causes some balance issues.  I feel something that hooked around her waist would have been slightly more practical.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I grabbed Kara from Cosmic Comix, taking advantage of a 40% off coupon to get her at a more reasonable price.  I’ve been looking for a solid Supergirl figure for quite some time, and she’s a character that companies seem to have some difficulties getting right.  I quite like this figure.  She’s not breaking any records or setting a new bar for action figures, but she’s pretty decent, and a marked improvement on some of the line’s earlier figures.  I think this is going to be my go-to Supergirl from now on.

#1429: Supergirl

SUPERGIRL

SUPERGIRL (DC COLLECTIBLES)

In spite of a largely dreary, depressing, and rather boring slate of movies, DC’s actually got a pretty solid little universe of live action TV-properties running.  The Flash is my definite favorite of the bunch, but I definitely appreciate Supergirl for essentially running counter to all of the things the hated about what Man of Steel did to the Super Family.  Supergirl’s initial start on CBS meant that it was in an odd spot as far as merchandising went.  It would seem that the show’s move to the CW smoothed out some of the issues, as we’ve since seen a handful of figures and the like.  Mattel was the first company to put out a figure of Kara, but that one was…well, it was a modern Mattel figure, i.e. not super great.  Fortunately, DC Collectibles followed it up with their own version of her, which looks to be the superior offering.  Let’s find out if that’s truly the case!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

Supergirl is part of DC Collectibles’ over-arching TV-based line, specifically under the Supergirl heading.  She was released alongside Martian Manhunter, towards the beginning of the summer.  The figure is about 7 inches tall and she has 23 points of articulation.  Ready for the same complaint I almost always have about DCC figures?  Yep, Supergirl has no lateral movement on her legs.  Hinged hips and double-jointed knees, but still no way to get her to stand anyway other than pigeon-toed.  It’s still a little annoying that this problem keeps cropping up.  I’m also a little bummed by the lack of waist articulation, but that’s more minor.  She’s not going to be getting into any super limber poses, but there are more than a few manageable poses with what’s there.  She isn’t unnatural looking, and that’s a good thing.  Issues with the articulation aside, Supergirl’s sculpt is most impressive.  The likeness of actress Melissa Benoist is spot-on; she’s even got the nice, friendly smile she’s frequently sporting on the show.  Even the hair does a quite respectable job of capturing Benoist’s style, and it’s a soft enough plastic that posabilty isn’t too hindered.  The body isn’t quite the same level of quality as the head, but it’s certainly solid work.  The proportions are all pretty balanced, and all-around quite realistic looking.  The clothing even has all the proper texturing and everything, which makes it look quite nice.  In terms of paint, Supergirl is generally pretty good.  Once again, the head gets the best, cleanest, and most lifelike work.  The rest is okay, but there are a few slight bits of slop, and I’m also not sure how I feel about the bright white paint used on her fingernails.  Still, very nice work in general.  Supergirl is packed with three sets of hands in fists, gripping, and open poses.  They all swap in and out pretty easily, and make for a nice variety of posing options.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

I mentioned a while ago in my review of the Dark Knight Returns Armored Batman that I had found the Mattel Supergirl at retail, and was deeply disappointed by her.  I knew DCC was releasing this one, so I was definitely keeping my eye out.  When this figure actually hit, I wasn’t in a good place financially to be picking up figures on a whim, so I held off on her.  Fortunately, my LCS Cosmic Comix held her in stock long enough that I was able to go back and grab her several weeks back.  She’s still a slightly compromised figure, there’s no denying that.  I wish the articulation were better, but the figure’s look is so nice that I’m willing to let it slide.

#0778: Supergirl

SUPERGIRL

DC NEW 52

SupergirlNu1

Ah, the DC New 52, how I’ve missed thee. Well, okay, no. No, I haven’t. In part because it’s still kinda here, but also because of that whole “generally not very good” thing. When the whole ordeal started, I did give more than a few titles a try. Among them was Supergirl, which, while not terrible, wasn’t particularly exciting either, so I dropped it after issue 2. But hey, even if the series wasn’t the greatest, I can still enjoy associated action figures, right? Right! So, yeah, let’s look at this here Supergirl figure.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

SupergirlNu2Supergirl was released as part of the main DC New 52 line from DC Collectibles. She was released in 2014, as a solo release, but the back of the package shows off fellow 2014 figures Batgirl and Orion. The figure stands just shy of 7 inches tall and has 19 points of articulation. Supergirl is a slightly older release from DCC, and they’ve made some leaps and bounds since then, so she’s slightly outmoded. The articulation is a little bit difficult to make use of, so you won’t get much besides a basic standing pose. It’s there, she can do some stuff with her arms, but that’s really it. Supergirl has her own unique sculpt. She is, obviously based on her basic New 52 design. Supergirl’s look is one of the less offensive New 52 looks. Since she’s had so many different looks over the years, another one isn’t all that out of place. The boots with the knees cut out are a little weird, but that’s the only real complaint I can come up with. In general, the sculpt is pretty well handled. The proportions are pretty decently balanced; the legs are a little on the long side, and the waist is a bit thin, but the overall flow of the proportions works. The head is a fairly attractive piece, and I’m kinda getting a bit of an Uma Thurman vibe from her. Also, not something I usually touch on, but the cape on this figure is quite nice. It sits well on her shoulders, and the flow of the material is really nice; to too straight, not too windblown. The paintwork on this figure is pretty decently handled. The colors are generally pretty vibrant, which looks nice, and I really love the metallic colors on the symbol and the boots. The face seems maybe a little over made-up, but not horribly so. Supergirl isn’t the most accessorized figure, but she does have a shard of Kryptonite, which she can hold, though she probably shouldn’t. Cuz, you know, Kryptonite.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

So, I don’t really care for the New 52, the book this figure is based on didn’t grab me, and I’m just alright on the costume design. Why do I have this figure? Well, my local comic book store strikes again. I had a 40% off coupon, and I saw this figure and figured, why not? She’s not the most exciting figure, but she’s a pretty solid addition to the collection.

#0207: Supergirl & Bizarro

SUPERGIRL & BIZARRO

DC MINIMATES

Bizarro&Supergirl

Goodbye! Today, me no am reviewing figures from my least favorite toyline ever, Minimates. Me no am happy to be reviewing Minimates. They am terrible! Figures today not come from DC Minimates, a line which had too many series. Figures am two minor characters from DC’s least popular comic, Superman.

THE FIGURES NO AM THEMSELVES

Figures no am from 6th series of DC Minimates. They no am from near end of line.

PRETTY LADY S GIRL

Supergirl no am Superman’s cousin. She am very old lady, who am left on Argo, capital city of Krypton, which am destroyed before Krypton exploded. Supergirl am very tall figure, not based on normal Minimate body. She no features 14 points of articulation and am 2 ½ inches short. Supergirl have three old pieces. They no am right for the character. They am too skinny. Pieces am sculpted very rigid. Paint am okay. This am very bad. There am no interesting details. Supergirl’s face am very calm, and am same as others. Supergirl am well accessorized with nothing.

ME AM BIZARRO

Bizarro am original Superman. He am greatest hero ever and am great friend of Superman. He am not based on classic Bizarro, which am terrible! Bizarro am no based on minimate body, and no have normal features. Bizarro no have three sculpted pieces: hair, cape, and belt. Cape and belt brand new pieces and hair am re-use. Pieces no am good for figure. Am terrible representation of character. Bizzaro’s paint am no good. This am very bad. Slop am everywhere. Bizarro’s face am no detailed very well. He am very sad looking. Me Bizarro am include “Bizarro #1” necklace, which other Bizarro’s no am included. Me am happy about this.

ME AM THREE HALVES OF THE EQUATION

Ethan sell Bizarro and Pretty Lady S Girl from distant comicbook store, Cosmic Comix. Me no get them when they am unreleased. Me no am like them. They am terrible figures of characters. They am no important characters to Superman.

 

Confused?  This post was written in Bizarro speak.  If you’d like a translation, click here.

Guest Review #0003: Supergirl & Bizarro

The  following is a guest review written by my brother, Christian Wilson.  Enjoy.

SUPERGIRL & BIZARRO

DC MINIMATES

Bizarro&Supergirl

Ahoy! This is life. Sometimes you don’t know where you’re going but you know where you’ve been. And that’s all that love’s about. But love is not about the Bizarro & Supergirl Minimate Tupac from probably the 6rd of 8 series of DC Minimates (Because why wait any longer!?). The rippling abs and pectorals before will be put to action immediately. Get ready for the BOON!

THE FIGURES THEMSELVES

These figures are like midgardians. Weak and tiny! As they both originate from Superman Descent (Yeah, that’s a thing I made up with mah brain powers), they both sport some Supes logos. These characters are like the stuff you’ve seen before only more backwards.

SUPERGIRL

I wouldn’t have put her first, she’s just boring, but cool at the same time! Supergirl sports a lady skirt, and some differently sculpted hair. Along with the cape, much work was clearly put into to this thing(if you will). There’s more than 6 articulation points and this makes Supergirl undesirabley angry for some reason. Just look at that face! If you would like to learn more about this robust lady of the lake, look her up on Wikipedia cuz I ain’t gonna draw her.

BIZARRO

This figure am horrible! That was bizarre speak for this figure’s is awesome! The character is captured well in his classic uniform and not some Smallville CW sh*t like before. This figure uses lots of parts from Superman surprisingly. With the exception of the paint being purplish and the backwards S in his chest, this figure is mostly the same but different in a good way. Like the Dred Scott Decision of 1857! If you would like to learn more better about this backwards guy, do as listed for Supergirl above!

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Ethan bought it on a day some years ago. Bro.