The eighth wave of DC Universe Classics is heavy on members of (or foes of) the Justice Society of America. For those who may not know, the JSA is the older sibling of the better-known Justice League of America, having been created in the Golden Age of superheroes. Composed of the original versions of DC heroes such as Hawkman, Doctor Fate, Hourman, the Spectre, the Atom, Green Lantern and the Flash, the JSA and its Golden Age members would later make sporadic appearances in Justice League of America during the Silver Age.
In the late 1990s, the JSA was brought back as a regular series by super hero screenwriter extraordinaire David Goyer (Dark City, the Blade films) and James Robinson, and later, an up-and-comer named Geoff Johns. While the JLA dealt primarily with threats to the world, the JSA’s ostensible mission was helping to teach the next generation of superheroes. One of the heroes who would become integral to the JSA was Mr. Terrific, another modern-day reinvention of a Golden Age character. It’s a testament to the writers that a character with such a goofy name can become one of the most compelling superheroes of recent years (even rating a high-profile role in Justice League Unlimited‘s final season).
Michael Holt amassed fourteen doctorates in different disciplines and was a medal winning decathlete. He amassed an early fortune, retired young and had the perfect life until his wife and unborn child died in a car accident. This life-changing event prompted Holt to adopt the name Mr. Terrific and use his physical and intellectual skills to fight crime on the street level. He moved on to the world-threatening menaces as a member of the Justice Society of America.
Sculpt: Compared to other recent waves, DCUC8 has a good amount of new sculpting, including Mr. Terrific. While much of his body is the standard medium-muscled buck, he has a brand-new jacket and arms to match.
The sculpting of the jacket is superb, though we’ve come to expect no less from the Four Horsemen. The texture gives it a great leathery look and feel. And while it’s often hard to work in biceps articulation convincingly on jacketed characters, the Horsemen have pulled it off (with a little help from the fact that the jacket is black, and therefore can hide a multitude of sins).
Of course, the head is well done too, capturing Mr. Terrific’s distinctive looks. If I have any complaint, it’s that the red lining of his shoes isn’t sculpted on as it is on the DC Direct figure, but simply painted.
Plastic & Paint: The figure is molded mostly in black. The jacket is molded in a softer material, similar to vinyl, allowing for a good range of motion.
The white paint applications on the torso and thighs are a little uneven along the edges, which also occurs on the “T” on his face. However, the work on the jacket–particularly given its wrinkled texture–is sharp, particularly the “Fair Play” on the sleeves and “Terrific” on his back. Even the silver zipper looks great.
Articulation: Mr. Terrific features the standard DCUC articulation: a ball jointed head, ball jointed shoulders, hinges at the elbows, knees, ankles and abdomen, swivels at the biceps, wrists, lower thighs and waist, and H-hinges at the hips for ball joint-like movement. All of it has a good range of motion.
Accessories: In addition to Giganta’s right leg, Mr. Terrific comes with his T-Spheres–“floating robotic spheres which can do many things, including project holographic images, project laser grids, serve as cameras, link with outside data networks and orbital satellites, open electronic locks, allow him to fly by bearing his weight, explode with enough force to send Captain Marvel flying back, generate powerful electric charges, and strike as flying, projectile weapons” (Wikipedia).
Like Booster Gold‘s Skeets, the T-Spheres are mounted on a clear display stand that plugs into the figure’s back and can removed at will. It’s not quite as snug a fit as Skeets, and again, I would have preferred something more like the DC Direct figure‘s hand-attachment than the back plug (which leaves an ugly hole when not in use). At the very least, one loose T-Sphere that could fit in an open hand might have been cool.
Quality Control: No problems.
Mr. Terrific has a terrific sculpt (see what I did there?) including some welcome new tooling. Had the T-Spheres been hand-held accessories (or had a loose T-Sphere been included), it would have notched him up to 4 ravens.