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Dark Knight Rises Movie Masters:
Catwoman Review (Goggles Up)

In a month, I’ll be sitting in a theater watching Dark Knight Rises. It’s easily my most anticipated film of 2012 (sorry, Avengers, you were awesome though…). It’s that excitement, combined with wanting that C&C Batsignal that’s led me to snap up the Dark Knight Rises Movie Masters.

I’ve been so hyped for DKR that I’ve been avoiding just about any one complaining/talking about it. I’m just not interested – if I go see it and I don’t like it, I will say so, but I try to avoid deriving negatives from the little bits of info and images that leak before the release. It’s benefit of the doubt til the credits roll.*

I mention that because I don’t really know what the fan reaction has to been to the pre-release images of Hathaway’s Catwoman. We geeks tend to be harsher on the actresses in our beloved comic book films. We geeks tend to be harsher on things that are wildly successful. So, considering those two things, I’m not going to go look either. I expect to like the movie, the figures look like the movie, so I’m buying the figures. Simple as that.

* – I had the hardest time trying to be optimistic for Green Lantern. “It could be good” was like a mantra that wore out its welcome. It’s been a year and I still haven’t seen it. Maybe that’s my way of staying positive about it?

While I’m trying to keep it simple, Mattel sorta hasn’t. The first batch of DKRMMs have caused a little confusion, partially because Mattel doesn’t really advertise store exclusives and because card backs just aren’t what they used to be. In addition to the regular assortment there’s a Walmart exclusive single-carded Commissioner Gordon, a TRU exclusive Batman/Bane 2pk, and K-Mart has some exclusive pack-in bat-vehicle “blueprints” with the regular Batman figure.

In the regular assortment there’s the standard Batman, Bane, the previously reviewed Alfred, the unreleased John Blake, the unannounced sixth figure, and Catwoman. Catwoman is available one of two ways. The version reviewed here is the “goggles up” version. It features the goggles rotated around to create the appearance of “cat ears”. The other version features the goggles down, covering Selina’s “domino” mask. You might be asking why that couldn’t just be one figure. Well, me too.

I don’t know if it just wasn’t logistically possible for Mattel to make one figure with “working” goggles or Mattel just conceived the variant as a way to make an extra figure, but it’s kinda weird either way. Further complicating things is that we can slide the goggles down on the “up” figure which creates a cool, but inaccurate, look (the goggles would need to spin around to be movie accurate). Anyway, I’ve got the version I want, so I’m down Catwoman hunting.

If you took a look at your Movie Masters shelf, you might start worry that Mattel would make a Catwoman MM figure by plopping an Anne Hathaway head on the suit body. Thankfully, Catwoman is an all-new sculpt and while that alone moves her to the top of the class for the Movie Masters line, it’s also a pretty good sculpt overall. The texturing on the suit, including little details like the piping, the belt pouches, the zipper, can be found just about all over the figure. The proportions are pretty good too considering some of the DCUCs I have. The only concern I have on the overall sculpt is the scale. She appears to be a little “bigger” overall, but I may just be used to the DC girls running small in Mattel’s other lines. Continue to Page 2…

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43 comments to Dark Knight Rises Movie Masters:
Catwoman Review (Goggles Up)

  • Bob

    The figure looks pretty good, but I agree about it not looking quite like Hathaway. But my big question is “does anybody know when these are out in the UK?”. I’ve heard the end of September, and I really hope that isn’t true 🙁

    • Hope you can find ’em soon! Catwoman is still a little rare here, this being the only one I’ve seen. Hopefully they’ll all end up being plentiful like the previous ones.

  • Catty is just the only one i want. i like that she’s almost the design of the 60ies TV series catwoman! I smell custom time!!

  • dayraven

    man… that group shot at the end kinda stings. that’s a lot of dudes in suits, and a lot of parts re-use.i imagine next weekend having a fairly vigorous argument w/ a former roommate of mine over the nolan batmen. he’s an actor these days, and loves him some nolan, and i enjoy the previous films quite a bit, but not as much as he did… and the ase i intend to make, the case i always make when nolan gets brought up, is that he didn’t create a definitive batman world. there’s n0o room for the fantastical in the nolaverse, and for batman, that cuts out a huge chunk of his history.

    and in the case of a gal like catwoman, it means altering her fundamental nature. where’s the feline? michelle pfeiffer might have had a very non-canon costume, but her performance was VERY feline, inconsistent as only a woman w/ a thing for cats could be, using her whip like a tail, as if it were an extension of her body, that was some method business right there. her whole body language changed for that character… granted, i haven’t seen this new film yet either, but i don’t see that so far in the promotional stuff for ms hathaway. i come into this film a huge hathaway fan, and i hope she just knocks this right out of the park, but catwoman is a demanding role… i don’t doubt anne, i doubt chris’ vision of the batuniverse.

    i really hope that the next party to get the bat franchise goes in more of an arkham asylum/city direction, where the science is there, but the fantasy is fine too… since the comics embrace both.

    • I don’t think the films should get a definitive tag, but I alsodon’t think Batman has a definitive version anymore. Whether you’re keeping it simple with detective or crusader stories or delving deep into his sci-fi closet, he’s still Batman.

      With the movies, there will always be relaunches, so no version should hold too much sway for too long. I also think sci-fi aspects in “realistic stories” have become a lot more accepted in the last seven years, so I think the next version can easily be closer to what you’re looking for.

    • TwoFisted

      I’m not saying that the Nolan Batman films should be tagged as “difinitive” either. I dont think any Batman film has even come close to difinitive. I think what DR was trying to say is that if more Nolan films were to be made..theres very limited material that can be used in the world that he created. Apart from a handfull of villains in Batman’s rogues gallery, most villains run on the fantastical side and couldnt be put in a Nolan film without that gritty and realistic feel being compromised. The Riddler could be in a Nolan film…perhaps Penguin if he was portrayed as a straight up mob boss instead of the monster that Burton created. Perhaps Poison Ivy if she was made to be an eco terrorist instead of a mind controling chemist. Could i picture Mr. Freeze or Killer Croc in a Nolan film? No way. Man Bat or Clayface? Not a chance. Not without seriously compromising who these characters are. I’m really looking foreward to seeing how Nolan portrays Bane in this film. I’m wondering how many compromises are going to be made to make Bane alot more realistic for his film

      • dayraven

        i think even ivy would be a stretch, as plant manipulation is fundamental to who she is, just as the feline aspects of catwoman are intrinsic to her. she’s going to be a tough sell in the world that nolan created. i truly think his joker was as fantastical as the world could accommodate. but totally, freeze, croc, clay, manbat… they’re all a no-go. and honestly, someone as goofy as calender man or the mad hatter are straight out as well. they’re too mundane.

        as far as definitive goes for the bat, i think definitive in his case is a scenario where any or all of those varying incarnations can happen under a single umbrella… so like, the video game world lacks the camp aspects that bats does have to own up to, and certain of his villains (penguin and riddler come to mind) are best served camp side up. but the video games can easily support the scientific (batman, bane) and the fantastic (croc, ivy) and that’s a step above the “science only” nolanverse. not that nolan couldn’t mine a few other characters, like black mask or prometheus, but there are limits.

    • Agree with you totally. I think Nolan’s Batman movies are great, but they’re set too much in reality to include some of the more fantastic elements that make Batman what it is. Excellent stories, but they miss a lot of the fun of Batman’s universe. Pretty sad that most of his Rogue’s Gallery just wouldn’t work in these movies.

  • Fire King Xi

    Yowza! The Batman Movie Masters line definitely gets the Kewpie prize for most boring toy line ever. I guess all the fan boys that have been clamoring for more suits and secret identities have gotten there dream line.

    • Almost… where’s my Lucius Fox figure!?

      • dayraven

        it wouldn’t be so bland if the suit torsos weren’t mere head swaps. does no one in the nolanverse favor a double-breasted? and honestly, even if we just textured the suit a little, it would show better… i always pictured alfred as a tweed fan myself, but lucius is definitely a seersucker man, etc…

        • Brainlock

          Of course, he’ll be sought after, just so we can say we have a “god’ figure in our collections! LOL

    • These have to get easier to find, but this is still the only one Ive seen. 😛

      • TheBloodyAwfulPoet

        Try Barnes & noble. They had a kiosk there today with what I assume was the whole set (alfred and selina were the first ones on the pegs). I’ve got zero interest in these, so I passed.

  • Tommy

    I really like this figure, but will hold off until I see the movie to determine if Hathaway wins me over. It seems like the best female made so far by Matty. I would really like to see a Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman, and Danny Devito Penguin.

  • A woman and a bunch of men in suits and totally identical body molds? You got to be kidding me Mattel, how lazy is that?

    • It gets even more fun when you realize it’s just the Question body scaled down (and with the legs swapped).

      • Holy cheap trick, it’s true! O_O

      • Megaduce Flare

        I thought it was the DCSH Clark Kent / Two-Face body that was being used ad nauseum?

        Also, I’m kind of surprised you don’t have any Gotham City Thugs in that last pic, or would they not have fit in the shot?

  • wally2974

    I noticed the Joker has a Batman mask in his hand. WWhere did it come from? Is it some kind of custom piece?

    • lol I forgot he was holding that. I swapped the Bruce head to a Batman body and that was leftover, so I dremeled out the eyes and mouth is all. Good eye!

  • Haljor

    Great review as always. I’m wondering if the Catwoman figure is a generic body to later be used as a Julie Newmar Catwoman figure. Since they will hopefully make figures based on the 60’s TV show.

  • ero

    Some day I’m gonna find you, Catwoman. I’ve found six Gordons, and yet you remain … elusive.

    What bothers me most about the suit thing is the way they’ve handled it. Crane was a pretty snazzy dresser, and they gave him some kind of buttoned-up bolo treatment. Dent looks like a schlub accountant, the Goons are all dressed the same and Alfred is wearing Bruce Wayne’s suit and tie. (I think Alfred should have gotten either the overcoat treatment or vest and white shirt.) But I do look forward to my suit-body-with-bow-tie Lucius. The toy world needs more bow ties.

  • Andy

    FYI, people are having luck finding Cathaway at Barnes & Noble. There’s a little Batman merchandise cube placed on the store floor randomly.

    I too, wish we were getting better accessories with these figures. Guns for Catwoman, any of the Bat-gadgets for Bruce, A cracked Batman cowl for Bane, serving tray for Alfred. It seems so simple and I’m tired of Matty crying poverty.

  • My only interest lies in the bat signal, so sadly, i wont be buying these 🙁

  • Snowglare

    I’ve been avoiding all info about the movie, too. Couldn’t completely ignore the toys, though. I never wanted to know Catwoman or Bane or whoeverelse would be in it, but internet. What can ya do?

    How’s the range of motion in her hips? If it’s on par with DCSH Catwoman, I’ll have to consider adding a Catgirl? or whatnot to my collection. If not, oh well. Never understood why the 4H/Mattel changed the female hips when their first go at it was practically perfect.

  • TwoFisted

    When you really look at it…maybe these movies dont really translate into great toys. I mean if you study all the figures from all the films…we really do have a couple Batman variants and a bunch of guys in suits. Joker thug, Harvey, Two-Face, Gordon, Alfred…all using that same body. I’m surprised that Matty didnt use that same body for Joker. At the tail end of the Dark Knight toy line….didnt i see a strange Deathstroke figure in a final wave? I vaguely remember seeing a Deathstroke in a Batman movie package. Maybe a last attempt to add some spice to an otherwise boring toy line? I remember seeing the same thing with Superman Returns. I saw a weird Mongol figure in movie packaging at one point.

    • The Deathstroke (and Firefly) were part of the tail-end of the 5″ “kiddie” line and Mongul was part of the “Man of Steel” video game rebranding of the 5″ Superman Returns figures (one which I still need to track down…).

  • wally2974

    Thanks for answering my question Noisy. Why didn’t Mattel just include a cowl like that instead of that stupid-huge mask and “Evidence” bag for the Dark Knight figures? So STOOPID!!!

  • Brainlock

    “Further complicating things is that we can slide the goggles down on the “up” figure which creates a cool, but inaccurate, look (the goggles would need to spin around to be movie accurate).”

    so the goggles should have been a 3pc part, with the lenses able to swivel around on the arms? I’ve only seen a few early CW pics, and the “goggles down” pic still had the feline-esque look to them, like in the comics.

    I have been trying to avoid most of the spoilers/clips the last few months, which is probably why I’m not feeling the hype on this one. I know JGL and a couple other actors are in it, and expect Joe’s “Officer John Blake” to re-use the police uniform from the over-priced Joker 2pk.

    Up here, it seems the stores still have remnants from the first shipment of Bat/Bane and occasional Alfred cases, no sign of Gordon (dark coat), Selina, or Blake, as yet. I will check out the B&N suggestion the next time I get up into StL county.

    ah well, I now have my Metron and SHORTrocitus (AtroSHORTus?) to tide me over. 😉

    • JamesLynch

      Gordon’s a Walmart exclusive, and as far as I know Blake’s not out yet (he’s not even up on eBay right now). Selina’s shipping in the same cases as Batman, Bane, and Alfred (all four showed up at the same time in my area, though the short-packed supporting characters are unsurprisingly selling faster than the reissued Batman), though I’ve heard that there are multiple case packs to choose from, and certain companies are buying cases that are short on the supporting characters (Target, reportedly, is buying cases that contain no Alfreds).

      • Brainlock

        Yep, I’ve heard about the case mixes. First ones I saw were at Target, 4Bat/2Bane, but WM across the way had an Alfred in theirs.

  • manekochan

    I hate the goggles/domino combination. Ugh. No reflection on the toy… just a reflection on the design from the movie.

    • Rich

      I’m glad I’m not the only one who found this really, really odd!

    • Well, if you’re in the middle of a heist and have to remove your goggles to get a better look at something, would you want everyone seeing your face?

      And no falling back on the uselessness of a domino mask! That’s a grandfathered trope at this point…

  • demoncat

    the only thing wrong with the figure is those goggles that plus her expression looks like she is so thrilled about getting made or being in the movie. and surprised she came with the base for the batsingal and the electrical box for it when thought she would come with maybe the front unsmashed glass with symbol. wonder then who comes with the electronics to make it light