Friday, May 25, 2007

Infinite Indifference

I think I may have cracked DC Direct's strategy. With a couple of recent exceptions, the amount of effort and QC put into a figure is in inverse proportion to how much anyone cares about it. Stunningly clever, ain't it?

Take this week's Infinite Crisis Wave Two. Hands down, Firestorm is the figure of the bunch. See him here with his other newcomer friends. He's well sculpted with excellent paint apps. His fire base is exceptional.

On the other hand, the Wonder Girl and Donna Troy figures, ones I expect were more widely anticipated, have been pretty much botched in my view, The Wonder Girl figure doesn't look too bad with some of the Classic Titans (pictured below), but I wouldn't suggest putting her next to the Contemporary Titans or putting the Donna figure next to any version of Kyle Rayner - Scale Issue City.

But it's in the individual inspection of the Donna figures that they really fall down. First up, we have some majorly freaky arm construction here. They're far too long and almost appear to be on backwards, making for a very awkward stance. The hips and waist are also clunky, although the loose fitting belts help cover that up. It appears as though a pinkish plastic has been used as opposed to flesh coloured paint and the effect is that they look more like something you'd find in the cheap toy section at the supermarket rather than what should be a quality collectable. More strangely on the Wonder Girl figure the flesh pieces of the upper body are raised above the uniform as though they were different pieces. On the plus side, the head sculpts for the two figures are quite different and fitting.

As for the big three, these are great(ish) ideas that fall short to varying degrees. I'm definitely more of a BVP person but when it comes to Superbat, how many BVP's do you need? I actually quite like the shredded uniform Bats. The detail is excellent here, down to little scratches etc., but there is some sloppy paint work on mine and what appears to be paint spatters on his flesh. Wonder Woman has the same cheap-pinky flesh thing as the Donnas and also the same weird waist and hip thing which me no likey. Supes just doesn't work for me at all. Really hate the head sculpt, and as you can see the only way he'll stand up on his little peg thing without pulling the base over is to put the base sideways which is annoying. As for the claims that you can put these in a plain pose? Not likely.

I don't have a problem with Firestorm II getting a figure. He's had his own series and obviously a base of fans, so good for them. It does seem very typical DCD however that in a line-up like these it's the newcomer and least likely to be remembered that gets the corker of a figure, while the others get progressive levels of blah and blech.

That's a way to keep you fan base, isn't it?

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Forbidden Fruit

So a quick confab with the domestic coordinator confirmed today that I will not be owning the 13" Power Girl if I want to keep my marriage, my collection and I think it was implied, my willy.

Something to do with the gratuitous representation of women in comics and the fact that we have two young daughters and (you know that sound that all the adults on Charlie Brown make when they speak? Yeah, that's what I heard)

Currently seeking one centrally located friend who will allow me to keep this one at his place and come to look at it often.........
Oh, and to the self-righteous prick who always complains when I post anything about my wife, she, unlike you, has a sense of humour.........

Custom Heaven

I'm not just an rabid Legion of Superheroes fan, I'm a major Phantom Girl Phanatic, so it's always been a point of desperation that DCD pulled the plug on their SA Legion cookie cutter series short of PG and the other early Legion Ladies.

I fret no more, because my amazing customising friend known on many a board as Jackknight92 has produced me this extra fine custom which fits in unbelievably with her SA friends.

I'm still at that stage where I get a little tingle up my spine every time I walk past the shelf and see her there (which is an improvement since when I first put here there I was so excited I'm pretty sure I peed a little bit).
It's an excellent job, but also shows how easy it would have been for DCD to have finished off this line. Grrrr.
At least DCD's current output is making it easy for me to have enough money to commission more customs.

Monday, May 21, 2007

One Hell of a Hal!

I've tried to be a disciplined collector. When I caught the AF bug I realised quickly that this was a hobby that could be a quick road to the poor house, so I decided to clearly define my collecting limits, and I decided that the DCD 6" line was going to be it.

Yeah, that was before the 6" line went to the fractal armor shithouse. (And while we're on armor I'm not going to waste a whole post bitching about the fact that they are ACTUALLY going through with that bloody MA Nightburp and Flamefart armour line....) So I decided to add the 13" line, and the odd Minimate, but I was definitely going to stay away from the statues. That was my line in the sand.

I blurred the line with the Zatanna mini-bust, but that was just because I love the character so much I'd buy a Coco Pop with an extreme Zee likeness. It was pretty nice tho.

And so it was that I was suitably softened up that when I saw the Green Lantern JLA Cover to Cover Statue, I cracked. And I have to say, it's bloody awesome.

As you can see from the comparison pic it's about 10" and after a bit of fiddling it sits beautifully on it's base. Oddly I have to position the base backwards to get him to stand properly, otherwise he slopes oddly. However this statue is so beautiful I really don't care.

I'm not going to be drawn in to this statue thing tho. I mean, I definitely didn't order the Flash and Wonder Woman JLA Cover to Cover Statue, and I most certainly didn't order the Donna Troy or Black Canary Women of the DC Universe Mini-Busts.

And yes I'm totally lying.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Credit where it's due

After my rant in the previous entry, I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge Georg Brewer's "interview" with superherotimes in which he does actually acknowledge a scale problem (in this case the Giant-Size CRISIS Batman). Here's the link:

The reason it's an "interview" is that it's all kid gloves, no truly hard questions asked, and the "interviewer" even wraps up the brief discussion on scale and QC with a glowing statement of how Brewer's obviously addressed it to make sure that scale issues never happen again, or some other such rot.

Was that a paid advertorial? If not, publishing such sycophantic drivel doesn't do much for a fan site's cred. If you're not prepared to ask the hard questions you shouldn't be doing the work in the first place, and if you're not allowed to ask the hard questions then they don't deserve to have the article printed.

When my kids say they're sorry for something I tell them that the true way to show you're sorry is not to do it again.

Same applies here Mr Brewer. Talk is cheap.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Well worth the (bloooody long) wait

It's good to know that DCD takes my threats seriously. And so they should. I was working on some very nasty ju-ju if my fears from the previous post came true. I'm talking really evil, toxic tantrum type vengeance.

Thankfully I can save that up in case they screw up the Shazam Family Wave because I really don't think Booster or Buddy could be much better. True to my word, there will be no complaints about them, especially since, most importantly, Booster and Blue Beetle don't look at all out of place with each other. It's great to have the boys together and also to be one step closer to being able to recreate the cover to JUSTICE LEAGUE #1 circa 1987ish (team photo below) - doubt we'll ever get Black Canary in her funky outfit from that period but I can dream.....

From what I'm reading online, the scene in my LCS today seems to be occurring elsewhere - not a Booster or Animal Man in sight and lots of Supernovas and Batwomen on the pegs. It would be great to think that DCD is watching and seeing that figures of the classic characters (okay some might argue Booster isn't classic but he's been around more than five minutes) WILL sell, especially if done well like these guys.

True to DCD style, of course, the rest of the wave is comprised of flash-in-the-pans who really don't merit a figure at this stage, so the no-bitch policy doesn't extend to them. I predict Supernova will be one of 2007's top peg-cloggers. The final issue of 52 does raise some possibility he might have a future, but with that costume........ He's a competently done figure with a slightly twisted torso, but at the moment I'm struggling to work out where he's going to go on the shelf.

Isis is possibly one of the best female figures DCD has ever done. Shame she also seems to be one of the most pointless, unless this incarnation of Isis is going to rise from the ashes. She looks pretty good paired next to the JUSTICE Black Adam - see the 52 cast photo below.
Batwoman is the disappointment of the bunch. Her face looks puffy, her right leg has an awkward bend in it which was evident in every figure in the shop and this little bunny couldn't get her to stand on her own and I have a bugbear about shelling out my hard-earned clams for an action figure that can't stand up under its own steam. The black lipstick from the solicits has been replaced with red and she looks the worse for it. An underwhelming figure to match an underwhelming character.
It's great to have Skeets, altho he's a touch big IMHO. The stand to create the floating effect is a very nice touch.
I'd say a second wave of 52 is unlikely. Would have been a great opportunity for a Rip Hunter or a better Steel than the one we've got, but again I'm not going to complain about getting these two excellent and long-awaited characters in one wave.
If you haven't bought these two yet, grab them while you can, firstly because I don't think they're going to stay on the pegs for long and secondly so that we can send out own message to DCD about what we want to buy.
Have to go - these guys have thrown my shelving arrangements into chaos and I have to find a place for everyone before I can go to bed.......

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Warning shot

Barring any delivery screw-ups, it's two sleeps until I get my much-awaited Animal Man and Booster Gold figures. In appreciation of finally getting these characters I am not going to bitch about minor issues, scale or QC. I have resigned myself to the likelihood that my Booster Gold is going to stand head and shoulders above my Ted Kord. I have reconciled myself to Animal Man's MA styling and leather jacket. I want these characters so bad I'll wear that.

But consider yourself warned, DCD, that if I get a Crisis Batman-sized Booster or a Total Justice-style Animal Man, this little blogger is gonna unleash a big can of whoop-ass, a plague on your house that will curdle the toes of your grandfathers' grandfathers in their graves.

Just so you know.
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