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Black Hand & Abin Sur Review

I’m still making my way through Green Lantern Classics reviews and today I’m looking at the two Black Lanterns from the first wave: Black Hand & Abin Sur. Well, it’s not really a figure of Abin Sur, but I have to call him that in the title so folks can find the review on Google. Don’t worry, I’ll explain it all after the jump.

If you’ve been under a rock, Mattel has jumped into the Blackest Night fray with two waves of Green Lantern Classics and DC Universe Classics Wave 17 featuring the deputy lanterns from the new Corps. We’re currently in the beginning of this Green Lantern gauntlet and DC Classics collectors are going to see their collections get very modern and very Green Lantern for the first half of the year.

The thing is, even though I enjoyed Blackest Night (except that quick and out ending), I haven’t been feeling as much excitement for these figures as usual. I’ve always said I was an “all-in” fan – that no corner of the DCU should be overlooked outright, but I find myself really challenged when faced with rank & file Yellow Lanterns, fabricated Red Lanterns, and zombie Black Lanterns. Particularly, Black Lanterns that we haven’t gotten living versions of yet… because the first figure up for review isn’t Abin Sur.

Abin Sur, as every comic book fan should know, is the dying alien that gave Hal Jordan a Green Lantern ring. Amon Sur is his wayward son. He’s not the nicest guy. He grew up hating Green Lanterns because he felt his Dad loved being a GL more than him. So he turned into a criminal and fought Kyle & Hal. His life choices led to him becoming a Yellow Lantern (Abin’s head on a SC body and boom, Amon Sur figure) and, ultimately, to his death. During Blackest Night, both Amon & Abin were resurrected. And, hey, both fought Hal Jordan because the other GLs were busy. But the father & son pair didn’t look the same and somewhere along the line, someone at Mattel got confuzzled.

Truthfully, this nameswap really isn’t a big deal. There’s really no more clamor for one figure over the other and the figure ended up being a nice depiction of Amon Sur, but this goes down as one of those weird little Mattelisms. For the rest of the review, I’m calling him Amon though.

Amon’s mostly new, but he does reuse Deadman’s legs and shares a few parts with Mattel’s latest attempt at Sinestro. He has an appropriately creepy and accurate head sculpt. I was also really impressed by the hands. His left hand is sculpted to be grasping and is almost reaching for you. The left hand, while a simple fist, still has some decayed flesh detail and you can make out the Black Lantern symbol on the ring. That’s pretty cool.

His arms are new as is his torso, though it’s a bit weird. The front is sculpted somewhat similar to Deadman’s with some muscle striations stretched across his chest, but the back is relatively smooth and features a sculpted collar. Kinda odd. Anyway, the overall sculpt is nice and since Amon wasn’t terribly decayed (he was incinerated when he died, so not sure how that works anyway) the buck doesn’t look that off for a zombie character, particularly with the Deadman legs and the unique torso helping to pull off the look.

The articulation is a mixed bag. I was excited when Mattel announced the increased articulation. I do think the double joints are uglier than the standard joints, but the range they add is impressive enough that I’ll take the good with the bad. The double elbows on the arms are fantastic here, as are the wrists. They’re much more expressive. I’m not sure what Mattel is doing with the articulation going forward, but all Lanterns should have a ball wrist on their ring hand. Amon is capable of some poses I wish all my other lantern figures could do.

What’s a little frustrating is that the double knees had to be scrapped for the Deadman legs. I like the legs for their sculpt, but it just makes the figure feel a little off. He has this great articulation on his arms, but his legs, with the single knees and removed rocker ankles, just feel inadequate to me (even though I’m normally fine with ’em).

Last but not least is the paint. There are a couple scratches and the white/black lines are wobbly here and there, but I ended up with a relatively clean Amon. I love the black and white contrast, the symbol is sharp, and I’m really happy with the metallic paint used on the armbands. I’m not sure why they went for silver on the leg bands and white everywhere else, but it’s not that jarring. The eyes and teeth are well painted and help the head sculpt give off that scary cryptkeeper vibe. Continue to Black Hand…

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19 comments to DCClassics.Com
Black Hand & Abin Sur Review

  • Sephron13

    Another set of great reviews, which I’ve been eagerly anticipating. Black Hand looks great, though the missing wrist articulation and that weirdness with the hands not being flush with the forewarms is unforunate. Sculpt looks great! Amon Sur looks ok, just kind of an unusual choice for this line, or at least this wave. It’s very sad that there are only 2 waves scheduled for GLC, because the GL universe can really sustain a dozen or more waves pretty well.

    LOVED the Connor shout-out. Again, another addition to my Morrison JLA display that is sorely needed.

    • Morrison JLA should be one of these horrid theme waves!

      Connor Hawke
      Huntress
      Business Suit Lex
      Aztek
      Zauriel
      Prometheus

      C&C: Genereal

      LOL.

      Yep, the GLC line could go on for awhile, but with rumors of a different spinoff line coming in the Fall, my wallet won’t miss GLC too much…

      • Sephron13

        Despite the need for a Business Suit Lex (in the Morrison JLA figures and every other portion of DCUC), I’d swap him out for a Queen Bee or The Key and call it a day. Great selection of figures there, though. Hopefully someday…

        Yeah, Batman Classics I imagine, ramping up more excitement for the 3rd Nolan Batflick. We’ll see.

      • Brainlock

        as long as Zauriel is in his FA toga, I’m fine. I never did care for his “god armor” look.

        I’m still waiting on BBTS to process my order from a week before Xma$, but they did post on RTM that they are heavily backlogged, so….?

        I am kinda glad I passed on the DCD Hand(s), so this is the first version of him I’ll be getting with my BBTS order.
        (still no sign of w14 up here, either. :/ )

  • Robert

    I love your reviews!

  • Lay Ze-Man

    Haha, great last comic!

    But with the movie coming, doesn’t look like Black Hand will be done anytime soon! 😀

    Also, thanks as usual for the great character summaries/info for those of us who can’t actively follow the comic story lines. 🙂

    • I know there’s a Hal moving coming and we’re already at 7/10 Hals… I might be sick.

      I’m glad you like the character backstories. Sometimes I feel like my reviews aren’t very reviewy. 😀

  • kingflame81

    I love your reviews as well! I look forward to them so I can see what problems/things are present with these figures and if I’ll want some or all of this guys, so thanks for what you do. It saves me alot of money. I like the Black Hand figure dispite the problems you listed. What the hell is DC’s problem? You’d think they’d have figured out alot of these simple, and easy to fix problems/QC issues. I hope all of this doesn’t mean crappy figures down the line. This is not how you reward loyal consummers guys. Anyways, as soon as I can track down an affordable Black Hand, I will.

    • Companies don’t have full control over manufacturers. It’s one of those oddities of the toy business. Plus, no company is really willing to scrap something and do it right if something goes wrong.

  • Great reviews! I totally missed the Abin/Amon character switch! Dammit to hell!

  • Two TRU and even a Walmart in my area had the full first wave on their shelves. I really just want Kyle for my ranks, but had to pass. I liked the way the figures looked for the most part, but the preposing in the package looked like it was going to rip Amon’s arm off at the bicep swivel, same with Kyle. The main problem for me is the price. I’ve recently been filling out some G.I. Joe collection with figures on sale for $3 a pop, so after that I just can’t spend the $15 for a nice looking, but still pretty plain Kyle Rayner figure. Black hand and Amon here both looked like the most interesting figures, so I was still interested in them.
    Thanks for the review. This sums up what I was thinking, which is I’m happy that I passed on them, because I get the feeling you should like these guys a lot more than I would, due to fact you’ve actually read Blackest Night, and if you’re a little lukewarm on them then I’m glad I saved my money.

    • The price… ugh. Most of my stuff comes from online and while I drop $100 or so on ’em for the wave, it spares me from staring at the individual $15 tag.

      I think you hit the nail on the head, they’re just lukewarm as figures go. I do want a full DC Universe, but there’s characters that long time readers are much more invested in and it’s hard to get excited when it’s not those characters. The 4H did great work and made these figures serviceable, but the character/story behind is important too.

      And on that front, the rumor lists make 2011 look like it’s going to be a long year.

  • kingflame81

    What do you mean long year? I feel, for the sake of true diversity, DC starts pumping out figures that finish/round out certain teams/groups that are currently being left out for more “popular” waves like the GLC and Rainbow Lanterns.

    Where’s:

    C&C Elasti-girl for the Doom Patrol(I’d take Mento too)
    The rest of the Metal Men(Lead,Tin,Platinum,Copper)
    GA JSA figures(GA Flash,GA Sandman,GA Johhny Quick,Max Mercury,GA Atom, and Johnny Thunder w/Thunderbolt)
    DC Villains(Chronos, Dr.Destiny, The Key,Prometheus,Vandal Savage, and
    The Rogues(Zoom 1 and 2, Mirror Master, Heatwave, Trickster(SA version) Weather Wizard, Captain Boomerang, The Top, and Dr.Alchemy

    And finally a wave or 2 of GLC figures DC could make that fans really want:

    Evil Star
    Major Disaster
    C&C Hector Hammond
    Goldface
    C&C Paralax-monster entity
    Paralax(hal version)
    Dr.Polaris
    C&C Krona
    a Guardian
    Invisible Destroyer
    Tattoed man(either version)

    Do you think any of these characters will be made?

    • I think that a lot of those characters could get made, but what I mean by long year is that (other than some promised JSAers) 2011 isn’t going to see any of em.

      We’ve got the Bane wave ready to drop, then Blackest Night, then the Super Friends rumor, the promised JSAers in DCUC19, and it’s likely that Nekron will head up another GL wave in DCUC20. I hope I’m wrong, but I’m not expecting to get too many teams completed this year.

  • kingflame81

    Which of these figures, then in your expert opinion, could/should be made realisticaly?

    • I think they all could be made realistically!

      -Mattel is going to find us get loud if they don’t finish Doom Patrol or Metal Men.

      -JSA fans have been promised a bone in Wave DCUC19, we should see that at SDCC.

      -Most of the rest of your list are all villains. I think they’re all doable, but Mattel really hasn’t done a good job with the villains so far. Most of your list requires minimal new tooling, so I’d like to see them all make it into the line. The only ones on your list that would require a lot of new sculpting are Hector & Parallax, and as C&C’s they should get it.