Saturday, October 03, 2009

A Slice of Plastic Heaven – DCUC Wave 9

There’s no better title for the review of DCUC 9 – and not just because I actually got my order despite the distribution issues that have plagued this wave (thank you Mike’s Comics N’ Stuff!). This line truly gets better with each wave, and Wave 9 is no exception. There are some missteps, but the combination of an outstanding Collect & Connect and one of the line’s best figures yet gets it well and truly over the line.

When the wave was introduced, I would have picked Black Canary as the star of the wave, but the shine has been taken off her somewhat in the execution, first by the addition of some dark streaks in her hair, and secondly by less than perfect paint apps on her face. She is still an excellent figure, and the use of blue legs underneath her fishnets makes her a perfect addition to a Golden Age  JSA or a Satellite JLA display – so much so that I’m buying a second so that I can do both.

Guardian is the second figure that was better in the solicits than the final result. His helmet and shield were gold in the Two-Up shown, and looked a darn sight better than the final all-yellow, all-bland product. Now, I’m not turning up my nose at actually having a Guardian figure (one which again would warrant a double purchase for Golden Age and Modern Age displays), but it is a shame that Mattel scrimped on the final product. I may have to cajole one of my customising friends into fixing him up for me.

Wildcat is a huge step forward from the DCD “Wildcat taking a dump pose” version, but I really can’t get my head around why Mattel would make a variant version of this figure and not make one without taped hands so that we could have a Golden Age version. Hard to imagine this would have been a challenge, or that a Golden Age Wildcat is going to get a separate release. A great figure, but a sad omission.

On the flipside, Black Adam is a character that I’m not wild about, and yet the perfect execution of this figure has made me very happy to have him. Great headsculpt, great execution, without a doubt the quintessential Black Adam figure. One shame, as you can see in the group shot, is that the neck articulation is different in the figures in this wave, and the vertical articulation has been removed, making flight poses awkward. Hopefully this “running change” will run back to the better version!

I would have loved an unmasked Deadshot variant (perhaps a possibility for a Secret Six boxed set?), but for the moment it is enough to be able to put the horrendous DCD version behind us. Mantis (Comic Version) is also brilliant – the caped arms effect is excellent and fun to pose.

The winner of the wave, and perhaps the whole line, is Green Arrow. The DCD Hard Travelling Heroes version has always been one of my favourite figures, and I wasn’t expecting the DCUC version to top it, but this one does. At first I was dismayed to find that a small arrow is moulded to the bow, but this allows you to pose Ollie in a “bow drawn” stance, making a very dynamic pose. The moulded arrow does make the extra arrows redundant, especially since Green Arrow’s backpack has no storage space, but the figure looks so great I don’t care. Definitely in the running for 6” Male Figure of the Year!

After all this action figure goodness, Chemo is the icing on the cake. I got the “running change” Chemo with the extra bubble insert. This is one of my favourite Collect & Connects from any line. He cuts an impressive and imposing figure, and he’s just darn good fun. A great way to cap off a brilliant wave. Hopefully something can be done about the distribution issues that Mattel “can’t discuss” so that everyone who wants to enjoy this wave can do so.

You can see more pics at Facebook, discuss this at the AFB Forum and enter the October AFB Comment of the Month Contest by commenting on this post.

Until next time!


Kyle said...

This was an amazing set of figures. Guardian was plain, but i used some gold paint to liven him up some.

Doug said...

It'll be nice if any ever show up in my town. They definitely should have used some gold on Guardian...he looked so much better that way!

fairplaythings said...

It's a super line, and so worth it for the Chemo parts alone. But I'm surprised you didn't gush more about the Superpowers' inspired Mantis. That figure is pure win!

Jay said...

What? No close ups on Chemo? For shame!


Starman said...


An excellent wave,a s you said. There were some missteps such as: the Black Canary paint issues and the lack of side to side hip artic, the plain Guardian, the seemingly random neck articulation, as some of mine have up/down as well as side/side while some don't, and Green Arrow's bow, which is almost useless because the arrow that's molded on is too short to really put in a pulled-back pose.

All that said, this is a great wave and the Chemo is just flat-out Kick-ass. I was worried about the "bubbleless" Chemo as that was the one I originally received with my blue Wildcat, but here's to hoping I can wrangle a "bubbly" torso soon.


FB said...

For those few minor disappointments this really is a strong wave.Who would have thought we would ever see Chemo,Guardian and Mantis?

Unknown said...

I was luckily able to order this from Coast Style Comics and I wasn't disappointed. Love all the figures, the Guardian was plain. The only complaint I have is the right foot joint on my Black Canary is unusually loose and when i displayed her with the rest of my JLA on top of my medicine cabinet she fell into the toilet.

bigraj said...

Wave nine is definitely a spectacular effort from Mattel and the 4H. Black Adam is my fav from the wave.

fishmilkshake said...

Chemo was a great idea for a C-A-C. I like it!

Tom Freak said...

I really ant that Green Arrow. And that Chemo looks great, I couldn't care less for the character, but that's a nice looking figure indeed!

Saranga said...

They all look pretty great, but i must say that Chemo and Black Adam look the best. They've captured Adamn's likeness perfectly!

Does Dinah have heels or wedges or flats? i can't quite tell from the pictures.

Erin said...

I was really disappointed with the limited articulation on Canary: Mattel made some big sacrifices to include those stockings.

But Green Arrow is definitely one of the year's best, even with his bow issues. The wrist joints are amazing: I hope they consider using them on other upcoming toys.

Odd that the same line seems to include the best and worst articulated figures of the line.

ryanlb said...

The missing articulation on Black Canary doesn't bother me too much, but it does surprise me that Mattel says they needed to remove it in order to have the 'Amazing Fishnets!', when customizers have successfully swapped in Wonder Woman's legs.

Chemo is definitely my favorite figure from this wave, followed by Deadshot and Robo-Mantis.

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