DC Direct Review: Brightest
Day Mera & Red Lantern Mera

As is usually the case, articulation is the one area where DC Direct tends to lack and the Mera buck is no exception. There is some decent articulation here: a ball-jointed head (the regular version has some range despite the hair, but the red version is completely blocked by the bone collar), limited ball shoulders, and hinges at the elbows, hips, and knees. I’m always going to want more from DC Direct, but I really lament the lack of wrist joints on these two figures. It’s really hard to get good trident poses out of the static hands these two were given. That’s easily my least favorite thing about these figures.

Mera’s paint is awesome – both figure’s costumes are painted silver with a translucent overcoat to get the preferred color. Their is a slight drawback to this method – the intricacies of the scales caused some of the silver paint to show through here and there. It bugs me a little bit, but I don’t mind in the long run because the costumes really pop on the shelf because of the metallics. I’ll take the good with the bad on this one. Red Lantern Mera has great paint apps on her “bone” extensions except for the ones on her calves – they were forgotten and are painted metallic red like the rest of the figure.

The paint on both faces is really nice. Unfortunately, my Brightest Day Mera’s eyes are a little off from each other (the downside of the direct market, you get what Diamond sends you. sigh), but it’s not terrible.

In the accessories department, Red Lantern Mera makes you feel like Brightest Day Mera could’ve used a little more. While both figures have stands, Brightest Day Mera only has her trident as an accessory – and it’s recycled from the Brightest Day Aquaman. It’s comically big and it doesn’t really fit well into either of her hand sculpts. Meanwhile, Red Lantern Mera included her own unique trident, a red lantern (borrowed from Atrocitus), and Dex-Starr. Mera could have included some “hard water” constructs to help her value. Heck, it might have been cooler to have her trident cast in a clear bluish tint alone.

So, back to Dex-Starr. He’s a domesticated earth cat (yes, he’s blue, I know) that went through some tough times, but none as tough as getting a decent toy of him. Initially, the cat was thrown into the comics as a joke, but then the internet stepped in and he became a sensation, even earning himself a heart-wrenching origin story. I’ve already reviewed the Mattel version of Dex-Starr in which he was somewhat like an alien cat/toddler. I didn’t like that that much. This version is fairly accurate to the one panel where Dex-Starr was first shown – right down to the sprawled out pose. He does look more like a cat here, but the end result is that he’s a just hunk of plastic. He is articulated at the head and tail, but that doesn’t do much for him when he’s laying on the ground.

Overall, these are pretty solid DC Direct figures. The obvious question a DCUC collector is going to ask though is if Mattel will do these two. I want to say it’s highly likely that Mattel will get to them soon – they know there’s high demand (2009 IAT Most Requested Figure!), they seem aware that the Hals were a cheap fill-in for her on a tight budget, and Mera’s name even ended up on some Mattel shipping containers before being replaced by Hal. That said, it’s still Mattel. I just don’t know.

But these figures are good to have around regardless. I’m happy to have ’em. They’re great sculpts and some missing wrist articulation aside, are all-around good figures. If nothing else, Karen Palinko sculpted all those scales individually – and artwork like that shouldn’t be left to gather dust in some old comic shop, right?

For more DC reviews, check out our
DC Universe Classics Collector’s Guide.

19 thoughts on “DC Direct Review: Brightest
Day Mera & Red Lantern Mera

  1. Man, the Brightest Day version is BEAUTIFUL, I mean, wow. For a toy, she is babe-licious!!!! If only Poor Marvel Legends Emma frost would have been sculpted by Karen Palinko…

  2. I just don’t like mixing DC Direct in with my Classics. The Four Horsemen’s visual style is one of the big reasons I like ’em and so mixing in other artists work doesn’t do it for me.

    1. I don’t like it too much either. I usually stick with the aliens since the scale/style issues are moot, but Mera was too good to pass on. I also picked up a Superwoman from the New Kyrpton line. She’s a smidge too tall too, but I love that design and it probably doesn’t need a DCUC anytime soon.

  3. She’s a close enough fit for me for DCUC. The sculpt is gorgeous– truth is, the DCD females tend to far outshine the DCUC ladies. If you pick and choose you can find DCD women that look reasonable with DCUC.

    The only unfortunate thing is that the DCUC Aquaman is one of the teenier males– back when their heads were slightly underscaled.

    1. It’s just a smidge, isn’t it? I find myself wishing DCD could just do things a little smaller. Some of the girls do blend in pretty well. Steph/Batgirl is one I have mixed in happily.

  4. Didn’t Neitlich say not to get our hopes up for a DCUC Mera because she would cost out to four regular figures? translation: she’s not high on SCOTT’S list, so she’s not high on Mattel’s list! but hey, here’s a 3pk of Skittle Lantern sidekicks!

    Maybe it’s just me, but I think you could’ve done a sweet Dating Game comic, featuring Mera(s?) and the various Aquamen from DCUC (regular, AC variant, and gold shirt from Manta 2pk and/or BD Aquaman?).

    or maybe a semi-regular comparison feature like this, when similar characters come out around the same from DCD and DCUC? I got BD Ollie from my shop last week, but I won’t get any of the other BD figures (Mera, Hawk, Dove, J’onn) until the end of this month. (Did I just make you angry or give you an aneurysm? LOL)

    1. Heehee. No aneurysms. The comparison idea is a good one, I just don’t have the funds to keep up with DC Direct… now if they could send me some stuff…

      TG did talk about bumping Mera off due to costs, so she ends up in the limbo with plenty of other characters. Me and my blind faith…

  5. Let’s be honest, a DCUC Mera would like hot dogshit compared to this one. Considering how close she is in scale, I’d say get her if you want a Mera.

    (So far the only DCD female figures I’ve gotten over the DCUC versions were Mary Marvel and Power Girl.)

      1. I got a DCUC Power Girl from someone online before they were readily available in stores, and I was so pissed off. Her head is rammed down on her neck at an awkward angle, her arms were way too skinny, and it looked like she haphazardly crammed two cantaloupes down her chest.

        1. To be fair, most depictions of Power Girl look like she’s smuggling large fruit.

          That said, I’m a huge PG fan, and I’ve yet to get a toy version I love. The DCUC version, like most of their females, is undersized and spindly (and has the oft-overlooked lower leg problems. Someone asked about this on the 4H website and they confirmed that the production version has the lower legs swapped below the boot line). The Infinite Crisis one is good, but not great (the sculpt is too artist-specific for my taste, and just seems to lack any real flair. The figure also lacks to level of articulation I like from my figures. Hey, if I was paying $15 a pop in 2006 dollars, I had some high standards).

  6. I like the DCDirect Infinite Crisis PG more than the DCUC PG, but as was said there still needs to be a better one. Why can’t the DCUC females come off looking good like the Queen and her council? It seems there’s something off on all of them.

  7. I’ve seen Red Lantern Meera up close and not picked her up. She is pretty darn fantastic. Besides the metallics and the scales, I really like the way they’ve sculpted her flesh–it’s got this soft matte finish. I guess the only thing holding me back was that she might not be in scale with DCUC figures. That and that they may make one of her. Well thanks to your review, I can safely get her now!

    Great review as always, Noisy! 🙂

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