Mattel had plenty of DC Universe stuff on display at the collector’s event last Sunday, from DC Universe Classics to Batman: Legacy, to Young Justice and Action League, to Green Lantern and Retro Action DC Super Heroes.
DC Universe Classics: Two-ups of series 17 and 18 of DCUC were on display. Series 17 had already been announced, but series 18 was new. Please take note that the line-up does not match the rumored one from a few months ago; it’s very close, but a couple figures are different. Anyway, here’s the official line-up:
Obviously this is a primarily a Super Powers series. I only collect the Bat-characters these days, so the question for me is, is the Bronze Tiger close enough to the Bat-family to warrant a purchase?
Also on display were two-ups of the previously-announced Legion of Super Heroes 12-pack, as well as a new Crime Syndicate five-pack featuring Ultraman, Power Ring, Superwoman, Owlman and Johnny Quick, which will be a Walmart exclusive.
Green Lantern: There was a ton of Green Lantern stuff on display, as you’d expect in a movie year. There’s the 4″ movie line, the 6″ Movie Masters movie line, and the 6″ Green Lantern Classics.
As you may have noticed, my Toy Fair coverage has been pretty idiosyncratic, focused primarily on the stuff that interested me. This is no exception. You can check out some of the pics I took of the Green Lantern stuff, but really, it didn’t interest me all that much. Just not a GL guy. Fortunately, there’s plenty of coverage on other toy sites.
JLU: This is JLU’s final year. If you want the full scoop on JLU, I recommend AFI’s interview with Scott Neitlich.
Retro Action DC Super Heroes: The next two series were shown. Series four features Darkseid, Martian Manhunter, Captain Marvel and Black Adam; series five is all Green Lantern and features Guy Gardner, Kyle Rayner, Sinestro Corps Sinestro, and Jon Stewart. Given the synergy with the movie, I’m guessing in 2012 we’ll see a series of this line with the Joker, Bane, Catwoman, and Scarecrow.
Young Justice: Both the 4″ and 6″ lines were on display. As many fans feared, the 6″ line will not work with DCUC, thanks to the cartoonish heads. I don’t quite understand why Mattel is even bothering with the 6″ line if they’re going to do the cartoonish heads; why not just make the heads realistic, DCUC-style? It’s not like toys based on movies/cartoons have always looked exactly like their media counterparts. Kids can have the 4″ toys and collectors can have the realistic 6″ toys.
I’m disappointed; I was really liking the idea of getting a DCUC-style 6″ line. I suppose they might look OK next to the Mattel Public Enemies figures, but that’s cold comfort. Although…you could swap the head on Robin for one of the DCUC Robins.
The 4″ line showed a Batman in addition to the other figures, but sadly, the articulation doesn’t seem like much of an improvement over DC Infinite Heroes. So. We get an under-articulated 4″ line, turning off the collectors of G.I. Joe, Marvel Universe, etc., and we get an overly-stylized 6″ line, turning off DCUC collectors. So I guess Mattel is banking on the kiddies for this one.
Batman Legacy: My favorite reveal of Toy Fair. Unfortunately, the beans had already been spilled a couple days before, but that didn’t detract from the pleasure of seeing the figures in person. The figures themselves were pretty rough, with Gordon’s tie sticking out, AC Batman’s cape not properly glued down, and Two-Face’s paint apps looking a bit rushed.
The Legacy line will have two main components: single-packed comic-based figures, and media-based two-packs (one from the Nolan movies, one from Arkham City). The first series will features Arkham City Bats and Two-Face and Batman Begins Lieutenant Gordon and Prototype Batman (which is there…why? Does anyone like that figure?).
The comic figures on display, which will be released as single figures, included a repaint of Mr. Freeze in Super Powers colors, a re-release of the DC Super Heroes Series 8 black-and-gray Batman with the Sinestro Corps Batman head (representing “modern Batman”), and a two-up of a Golden Age Joker. This figure, with its Dick Sprang face and full trenchcoat, is obviously begging for a head swap with the Marshall Rogers head of the DCUC Silver Age Joker, thereby creating what’s basically a modern Joker. I assume there will be some sort of problem with the head pegs being incompatible, though, since that’s just Murphy’s (Mattel’s?) Law.
Here’s how the figures will break down:
Batman Legacy Action Figures Series 1
・Golden Age Joker
・Super Powers Mr.Freeze
・Modern Age Batman
Batman 2-Pack Figures Series 1
・Arkham City Video Game Batman & Two Face
・Batman Begins Movie Batman（Prototype Suit） & Lt.Jim Gordon
2 more packs to be revealed at comic con with an additional Arkham City Theme & Batman Begins Movie theme.
It’s worth noting that Idle Hands’ initial version of his post featured a different line-up:
Batman Legacy Action Figures
・Golden Age Batman
・Silver Age Batgirl
・Modern Age Catman
・Golden Age Joker
・Silver Age Mr.Freeze
・Modern Age Batman
Batman 2-Pack Figures
・Arkham City Batman & Arkham City Riddler
・Batman （Dark Knight） & The Joker（Police Honor Guard）
・Arkham City Nightwing & Arkham City Joker
・Batman（Prototype Suit） & Lt.Jim Gordon
・Arkham City Batman & Arkham City Catwoman
・Batman（Batman Begins） & Ra’s Al Ghul（Ducard）
For the record: I’m posting this leaked list, even after Idle Hands changed his post and removed the mock-up pics used for it, because the information is already out there on the Internet–there’s no point in trying to hide it now. That said, understand that this WAS a leak, it is not official information from Mattel, and should be considered nothing more than a rumor.
There are some nice possibilities in that list, though, including the Golden Age Batman, Silver Age Batgirl, modern Catman, and most of all, Arkham City Nightwing. I suppose if/when Nightwing’s presence in Arkham City is confirmed one way or the other, we’ll have some idea of the credibility of the other parts of this leak.
Of everything I saw at Toy Fair, I’m most excited about the Arkham City Batman. I wanted a Mattel AA Batman from the first minute I played the game, so while the DC Direct figures (at least the first wave) look pretty great, this was the figure I wanted. I know some fans have been disparaging the sculpt of this Batman, saying the DCD one looks better, but I have to disagree. Look at the texturing on the Mattel figure’s bat symbol–that’s some great detail. And unlike the DCD figure, the AC Bats doesn’t have that weird blue/black split between the cape and cowl.
While the DCSH8 Batman has been my default Batman for a long time, I think AC Batman will replace him. Assuming they get the height right (which they may not, if these are closer to Movie Masters in height than DCUC–but the proto figure seemed to be of DCUC height), he’ll fit in well with my DCUC figures. I like that he doesn’t have the insanely muscled physique of the modern Batman (which I’ve always thought was the Horsemen’s take on a “realistic” Batman as based on his Bruce Timm look). He does have a bit of a pinhead, but that’s part of the AC design.
The Gordon looks great too, though as I said, I have no idea why we’re getting another Prototype Batman, unless Mattel has a lot of extra stock they need to unload. The rumored waves seem to focus entirely on the Nolan films, but I’ve got my fingers crossed that Batman Legacy might finally bring us a Movie Masters Keaton Batman.
OK, I’ve rambled enough. It’s your turn. Thoughts?