Batman Legacy: Toys R Us Arkham
City 1970s Batman Review

Anyone miss the days of “free” figure offers? Getting toys by mail is common enough now, but remember being able to get toys free with a tank of gas, flag points, or proof of purchases? I loved that. And whenever there’s a free figure offer these days, I find myself tempted…

The subject of my review today is a Toys R Us Exclusive, available free with purchase of Batman: Arkham City. The game debuted yesterday, and the first thing you might be asking is, “Noisy, if you just bought Arkham City, then why the hell are you writing this review instead of playing it?!?” Well, friends, I didn’t buy the game because I just don’t have time for it right now.

I love a good video game (my first job was working the electronics section at Toys R Us), but I rarely find time to get in front of my TV, controller in hand, these days unless its my wife insisting we play through the latest Lego Star Wars, Harry Potter, etc., game. I still haven’t even finished Ghostbusters for cryin’ out loud…

So, no I didn’t buy the game, but luckily I have friends that did; video game friends that don’t care about toys (that’s a wonderful thing, isn’t it?). I’d known about this particular Arkham freebie and thought that Arkham Batman in classic colors was a cool idea, but I really hadn’t given owning one much thought. I knew I wouldn’t be rushing out to buy the game (prolly oughta at least play the first one first, no?) But today, I got no less than three text messages about this figure being at TRU. Two were just showing me that it existed, but the third came with the offer. “If I buy the game at TRU, you want this?”

I evened up that deal a bit by offering to buy dinner. So that was my free figure offer: buy a friend dinner, get a “free” figure. Well, who in their right mind would say no to that? (If you don’t have a cool video game, non-toy-collector friend, the figure is free with purchase of the game at Toys R Us, but I’ve heard you can also snag this guy at $14.99 if you’re so inclined.)

I included a package shot up above since this Batman is unique in the Batman Legacy line. His packaging dimensions match that of the DCUC-Compatible, single-carded figures, but the graphics have been changed to reflect the new game. It’s a nice piece in package, but, here at IAT, packaging goes in the recycle bin.

Real quick, I did have to laugh at the copy on the back of the package. It really talks up the figure and its “meticulous design”, “deluxe articulation”, and “supreme quality sculpts” all made by possible because each figure is “expertly crafted by industry masters”. To sum up, I wish the folks involved in making the figure were as good as the guy who wrote the ad copy for the packaging…. geez.

Let’s start with “supreme quality sculpts”. Whether you bought this guy in black/grey in the 2pk or this blue version, you might feel like this isn’t the best Batman that Mattel has produced. But let’s examine that for a second; nearly all of the other Batman were contracted out to the Four Horsemen. This figure was done by the in-house Mattel team, and thinking about some of the other in-house sculpts I’ve bought over this year… well, this might be the best Batman that Mattel has internally produced.

There’s good detailing covering the entire figure. The texturing, the paneling, the ribbing, quite a few of the other costume details from the game have been translated to this figure, right down to some awesome treaded boots! And even the head sculpt is a good 3D rendition of the game. And yes, most of the figure is just reused from the Two-Face 2pk, but the chest piece used here doesn’t have the raised bat symbol on it, so some tooling was done to get this figure out (and possibly make it available to be used for the other skins featured in the game – Sinestro Corps Arkham City Batman, anyone?). I’m kidding, Mattel.

While we’re talking about the sculpt, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the size. I still really don’t know why Mattel went big on this line. Toy companies just seem to feel the need to cover the spread and make figures all different sizes. There’s some thought that Mattel went a little bigger on AA toys to make them more compatible with DC Direct, but compatibility never seems to be on the mind of a toy executive. I’m imagining something more along the lines of “We’re already selling 4″, 5″, and 6″ Batmen – let’s shoot for 7”!

Anyway, the size isn’t a dealbreaker for me. I didn’t buy receive this figure to put it with my existing DCUC collection. I wanted it for the novelty and being bigger than everything else doesn’t really affect that. So if the scale bothers you, remember to knock a few extra points off my summary because I probably won’t mention it again. Continue to Page 2…

35 thoughts on “Batman Legacy: Toys R Us Arkham
City 1970s Batman Review

  1. Forgive me for being a bit dense, but where is “grumpy” bats from?

    I can see the head is a repaint of the Sinestro Corps head, but I didn’t realise they’d used that head on a more standard paint job as well.


    1. It’s the Batman Legacy Single Carded Wave 1 Batman. I don’t like that head sculpt, so it’s the only Batman I don’t have a problem avoiding.

      1. Thank you.

        I’ve mostly avoided Batman Legacy (aside from Catman, obviously) as I’m not a big Batman fan.

        That, having to buy them online and no CnC to influence me towards buying figures I’m not bothered about has made them a pretty easy pass.

        I like the plain silhouette and the pouches though.


        1. If you like the body of that grumpy bats, it’s from the old DCSH line. That blue Batman in the very middle of the last pic sports it and Mattel also released it in black (that black one is one of the few DCSH I didn’t ever see).

  2. Damn it Noisy, Ive been trying to skate past the Arkham Asylum Figures. Like you I haven’t played the games and don’t have the connection to it. But after the review I had to grab one from ebay. If my wife kills me, I’m so putting this all on you. 🙂

    1. We can go on the run together! I’m going to have to leave for Mexico when my wife sees the Mattycollector bill for Monday. Hopefully, Cornerstone Logistics can get it here before I die!

      1. if that’s the nail you’re hanging your hat on, she’ll have dissolved your corpse in a tub full of sulfuric acid by the time that box arrives.

    1. The sad thing is that picture is missing the four I don’t have (the icky first DCSH Batman, the Black DCSH Repaint, the GA Bats with Bat-Mite, & the regular Arkham City Bats.

      Not counting all the other pre-DCSH and DC Direct Batmen… I think I have a problem. 🙂

  3. I guess the Goddamn Batman saw that there were too many Hal Jordans in the DCUniverse Classics and decided to do something about it… He created Goddamn Batman Inc!

  4. I’m eager to pick up the game, just not eager to spend the $60 right now. But seeing the free figure offer at TRU, I may give-in. I saw the figure up close on Monday and thought it was cool. Plus I don’t have ANY “Arkham” game figures, yet.

    1. I don’t have any either… and I’m not likely to get too many more. I liked the look of Two-Face in the 2pk, but Poe’s fantastic review showcased the swivel shoulders and lack of any ankles and I found that pretty disappointing. You know, technically, the back of package is saying that Two-Face has deluxe articulation too. Ha.

      Some of the new upcoming offerings are looking cooler though. We’ll have to see…

  5. i think your line got cut off there, about articulation just above the bane fight pics. “also, a lot of the articulation” and then it stops.

    yeah, i have to say, for deluxe articulation, as you say, it lacks range of motion and in particular, rocker ankles, help for deep poses… you know, the kind you might find batman in. i strongly content that, like spidey, we’ve yet to engineer the definitive batman figure, because no fig, from any line, can take the iconic deep crouching stances that the character is known for. spider-man also has never yet given us a figure than can put his knees up around his ears, and until one can, they have no business calling it a macfarlane spider-man.

    now, i would ask, how does his neck work? can he look up at all?

    you know, the AA/AC figs are tearing me up. mattel’s are definitely articulated than DCDs, but DCDs are much more on model, sculptwise. and i love the game, intend to snag AC hopefully later today, and would love to have proper figures made… but having seen what PAK is cranking out, i can’t in good conscience buy these other figs. the kai stuff is much more expensive, but it moves correctly, and it looks precise… well, isn’t that the point of licensed stuff?

    1. Thanks for the catch. I think that was a remnant of the first draft that got missed. All fixed now!

      Strangely, I would almost think that Batman getting the articulation of a Spider-Man figure would be sufficient, but Spider-Man might be impossible.

      His neck articulation is like a lot of DCUCs, he can look down pretty well (which works great with how the eyes are painted), while he can only look up slightly. The ab crunch helps with that though and there is a bit of side-to-side tilt, so I’d say it’s better than average for Mattel.

      The Arkham stuff… it doesn’t have a lot of appeal to me. Obviously, the first one I have is one cloaked in classic colors, but I am amazed at how pervasive it is. I remember years of no DC toys, so Arkham product is almost gluttonous.

      We still have that usual tradeoff between Mattel/DCD. More detailed sculpts from DCD (that DCD Freeze is a thing of beauty), but they don’t move as well as the Mattel offerings. The Play Arts stuff is really nice, high end, and it does combine the better parts of DCD with those of Mattel. It’ll be cool to see the comparison reviews (even though the Play Arts still will be giants).

  6. Here’s some bonus pics. Neither of my third shots in this particular set (of Batman being well received in Eternia) came out, so I scrapped the plans, but I figure these are still useful as comparison shots for scale:

  7. I have the black/grey Mattel Arkham Batman, and my feeling is that the figure could have been so much better. Like Shadow_Contact, I find myself willingly buying multiple Batmen, and the flaws Noisy points out just make this mold lackluster.

    The hindered articulation is what bothers me most. I was able to give the elbows a little more flex range by cutting a larger gap and was able to let his arms rest down more naturally by sanding his inner triceps a bit, but he’s still way behind the other Mattel Batmen sculpts in the range-of-motion category.

    Some of these figures also ended up with oddly longer necks, and I had to exchange my first set to remedy this. Check the review on Poe’s site for this phenomena, from what I’ve seen they don’t all end up with “giraffe” necks.

  8. I’d be surprised If they didn’t just take the in-game model, add articulation and used a 3-D scanner to create the template.

    I like the figure but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was disappointed by the limited articulation. I’m only a few hours in but I’m having a blast playing the game.

  9. It might be one of the best games ever, superhero or not! I played GTA 4 and had almost no desire to complete any of the side missions (barely wanted to finish the main game as well) and I am about 2% into Batman and almost don’t even want tp do the main story! EPIC game! And the ability to replay without the “Spider-Sense” on will be a great reason to try it a second time. And lets not forget all the DLC!!!!!!!

  10. I just picked up this figure today. I’ve been playing Arkham Asylum and Arkham City (walmart had a “buy the new game, get the old one free” offer I couldn’t resist) and that made me want to get a figure based on them. I’ve been looking at the Batman/Two-face pack, but Two-Face just seems too disappointing, and I don’t want to spend $30 just for Batman.
    Also, although I am more of a “Batman doesn’t need a yellow oval” guy, something about that gigantic symbol, mixed with the classic colors, really made this the more desirable of the two Arkham Batman figures.
    Anyway, I really like the sculpt, it seems spot on with the game, and the main thing that bothers me is not being able to put the arms down by his sides.

  11. excellent put up, very informative. I’m wondering why the opposite experts of this sector don’t understand this. You should proceed your writing. I am sure, you’ve a huge readers’ base already!

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