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DC Classics.Com S.T.R.I.P.E. Week
Golden Age Sandman Review

Articulation is standard for the line since the suit buck carries the same complement as the basic buck. That said the suit body does have some limits. The hinge ankles can’t move backward, the ab crunch is in there, but is virtually unusable, and the head has no up or down movement. The rest of the articulation keeps the figure posable though – ball shoulders, swivels at the biceps, wrists, waist, and thighs, hinges in the elbows and knees, and the 4H hips. I do wish the head had a little more movement, but I’ve been able to get the figure into most of the poses I want. I think the suit look helps here because he doesn’t look like he’s a guy that should be contorting that much.

The paint on my figure was solid with one exception. Most of the pieces are molded in the appropriate color with just little details like the tie decoration and the shoelaces needing paint. Almost all the paint apps are on the gas mask and the plan for this piece was really nice. A flat yellow for the base of the molded-blue mask and then a metallic yellow for the component pieces like the filter and goggles. Unfortunately, the left side of the face is a little sloppy. It’s not so bad, but when the right side is near perfect, it draws the eye.

Finally, Sandman includes his classic accessory, the “Gas Gun”. Though it appears to have been made in China, Dodds invented the gun as a non-lethal weapon prior to his first appearance. Depending on the gas cartridges used the gun can either put criminals to sleep, lower their aggressiveness, or can even be used as a truth serum. The design the 4H used for this sculpt is a later design – maybe the version given to him by the Crimson Avenger, but I’m not sure. Either way this design has been more or less retconned back to the beginnings of Sandman. I’m not sure when it first appeared, but I tend to associate it more with Sandman Mystery Theatre (the aforementioned Vertigo book) than the classic character, but I do like this design and I’m happy the 4H went with it.

Overall, the Sandman is a long anticipated addition to my shelves. Yeah, he’s a crucial component to any JSA shelf, but I wanted him for him as well. There’s a lot of reuse here, but this is one of those times where it works perfectly. I do wish the neck articulation was better and the head slightly bigger, but my desire for a Sandman figure is abated.

If there’s any commentary here, it’s that the DCUC line needs to get a little more Golden. The retail line has gone iffy for the foreseeable future, so we’ll have to look to the Club Infinite Earth subscription, but that might be a good place for it. Jay Garrick will round out the founding members (though like Alan, Jay’s older and won’t quite fit in with this crew), but the line needs to expand its GA focus outside of just the JSA. I didn’t realize until I was taking pictures for DCUC19 that there’s still no proper GA villains, and few characters beyond the scope of JSA Membership. The Crimson Avenger, the Freedom Fighters, the Seven Soldiers. There’s a lot of low tooling to be had there. Don’t get me wrong I need my Zauriel, Aztek, and other characters I’ve come to love as an adult, but a proper All-Star Squadron would look really damn cool.

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23 comments to DC Classics.Com S.T.R.I.P.E. Week
Golden Age Sandman Review

  • I actually really like Sandman. I dig the colors and his “Goldenageyness”.

  • Know what I think?

    Sandman+GA Green Lantern+new head and medallion = Phantom Stranger.

    That’s what I think,

    I bought the GA Hawkman, for some reason thinking it was the silver age one, as I had memories of the GA hawk head being more extreme in its look, somehow more deadly looking. Then I bought a Specter. Now I want the whole Justice Society for just the reason you stated, the clearly insane mix of characters. It would make me bust out the tools and make a JSA round table. 🙂

    I look forward to the rest of the reviews!

    • That Phantom Stranger could work. I’d really like to see Mattel get to him… it’s funny, when I get a character I really want – all it does is make me really wish for all the others I’d really want. Mattel might look into that with Miss Martian and Ram Man… lol

      I’m looking forward to this week quite a bit. I’ve got Stargirl, Atom, & STRIPE on tap while Vault will have Hawkman, Kobra, & Magog.

      As for a table, take a look at this post at Critical Mess featuring some GA Customs from the always amazing Rod Keith and a table he had custom made by the folks behind LaserMego.com -> http://www.criticalmess.net/index.php?topic=2541.msg352630#msg352630

  • you_will_forget

    Wesley is one of my favourite Jsa members and I love having him on my shelf.

    I dressed as him on Halloween a couple of years back after scoring a WWII gas mask off ebay. There’s photos on facebook if you want to see.

    Jo

  • Brainlock

    Obviously, you’re not a Whovian, or you would have snuck in a “Are you my mummy?” joke.

    That said, I’m pretty sure the “suit body” comes from the DCSH Clark Kent before it was re-used for Two-Face (SA 5pk pictured and the b/w suit in Batman line before that), Riddler (DCUC w5), and Question (DCUC w11). Why they never did Lex in business suit after YEARS of requests is a poser. Or fellow JSAer Johnny Thunder (which reminds me….)

    I also have to ask who that custom figure is, “Phantom of the Fair” you mentioned? TMNT Nobody? or another character?

    Besides Johnny, characters I wish they would have done are Vandal Savage, Per Degaton, and Wotan. We did get JSA villains Solomon Grundy (GL Scott) and Ultra-Humanite (Kal-L), but in his Great White Ape form, but a head swap with SA Catwoman would do for … Deloris Winter? I think that’s the name she had.

    Outside of those, I would be hard-pressed to name some others that weren’t exactly PC today, like Axis Amerika, which were more of a All-Star Squadron and Young All-Stars villain group. Joker, Lex, and Cheetah seem to remain with their nemeses, so I wouldn’t consider them JSA villains.

    (ok, I really want to shuffle my shelves into an A-SS over JSA, now. :/ )

    • you_will_forget

      Yes, but if he was a Whovian, he’d have to have Dr. Fate dancing in the background for that sketch.

    • I do remember that episode of Doctor Who now that you mention it, but I wouldn’t have thought of it. I have a couple friends that are so consumed by pop-culture in-jokes, that I try to shut them out (the in-jokes, not the friends… though maybe…) LOL

      The suit body Sandman uses is the new one that was designed for Question. The previous suit body used for the other figures you mention (Clark, Riddle, SA Two-Face), was originally designed for the first release of Two-Face in black/white. The tell is the tie – the original sports a bifurcated tie molded to the chest will the new one allows for a softer plastic tie piece to be added.

      As a funny aside, the new suit body shared some original sculpt with the Dark Knight MM suit body. The figures are in different scales, but if you note the folds in the fabric, you can see the legs are similar (though reversed below the knee).

      I had forgotten Grundy when I was writing (as well not really bothering to include big three villains like Joker or Giganta), but I don’t count the Ultra-Humanite because he got that ape body in my lifetime (and I’m an 80s baby). Dolores would be a neat/weird one to have, but I do like the character you name. – Wotan got a frickin’ Action League – where’s my DC Classic? I fear characters like him are too ‘obscure’ for even the subscription…

      As for my JSA Villains, it’s really a list of never gonna happens… Icicle, Ragdoll, Wizard, Tigress, Fiddler, Thinker, Brainwave, Shade (though I’d rather have his 90s look), uh… Harlequin, GA Rose & Thorn, Sivana, Cyclotron, Mist, the Gambler… a proper Sportsmaster, Rival… I’m running low…

      Now that I think about it, I’d like to get a modern, digital Thinker. That guy’s downright “toyetic”. But if we’re talking modern villains I gotta have a Johnny Sorrow.

      • Brainlock

        now that I think about the suit bodies’ ties, you’re right! duh!

        We DID get an Icicle in the Public Enemies line, but that was the son of the first, so I guess he would be the first Infinity Inc villain? and I would prefer the Secret Six’s Ragdoll over hir father. no need to go to the “Green Raggedy Andy” look.

        Wotan: new head, lean “Deadman” body and Mr. Miracle’s cape. That’s not too hard, is it?

        and we both missed a JSA villain WITH a suit! Gentleman Ghost! PLEASE tell me you made Vault have one for the GA Hawkman write up!????

        • Okay, so there’s more than a couple. But we came up with a great list nonetheless.

          I’m sure Vault has Gentlemen Ghost… if his GA Hawkman doesn’t have that pic, we’ll send him back for a revision. LOL

  • susperdadd2

    Hey, Noisy…

    Aren’t you missing wildact in ‘yer JSA pic?

  • j1h15233

    I feel the same way you do. I thought the wave 17 figures were good but not really exciting. I skipped all of 18 except for Seth Green, and 20 was a big let down. 19 was really the only standout of the year.

    • I liked 18 just fine, but 19 far and away runs off with the year.

      I can’t remember if it was at AFI, the Mess, or somewhere, but someone reshuffled the lineups and it didn’t seem near as bad. Same exact figures, but a little bit of each theme spread out and it seemed much more palatable.

      That said, still not looking forward to 20…

  • Nanite

    Thanks for the review! I always end up appreciating a figure more after you’ve written it up.

    I ended up loving this wave, and Sandman is right at the top. Both of my examples have really bad contrast on the lower limbs. They’re bright green, and don’t match the rest of the body.

    Still, great figure.

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  • ero

    I have no emotional attachment to the Golden Age guys, and these days, with limited shelf space, I’m trying to keep my displays nostalgia-based. But damn it all, every time we get more GA figures, out come Midnite, Starman and the rest from the storage bin. They are just wonderful.

  • […] original Red Tornado, but Jay Garrick is just a couple months away while DCUC19 delivered us the GA Sandman, Hawkman, and the […]

  • Clutch

    Excellent recap of all things Wes. You sure do know your Sandman history! I prefer this version over the purple and gold suit from the later Kirby era. Wes always worked better in his original duds for the reasons you cited. I mean, how cool is that pic of him facing the Phantom of the Fair? That is a great custom, btw. Wes is an essential part of JSA history and I am thankful that Mattel gave us the Golden Age Sandman as the late great Creig Flessel would have wanted to see him in full, three-dimensional glory.