I have no idea what to write about Rocket Red. I’ve got twelve pictures to work around and I don’t think anyone’s going to stick through two pages of me bitching and moaning about how this figure annoys me. I like to have fun with toys, but this guy’s a challenge.
Last summer pretty much sucked for DC fans. DC Comics pretty much tanked everything I liked about them and Mattel followed suit by tanking the retail line. When Mattel announced a DC Classics subscription that could pick up where the retail line left off, it seemed that not many of us were in the mood to jump up and ask where to sign.
So I wrote a Truetorial about how I wanted the DC subscription to happen last year. I wanted to tell DC collectors that we could snatch a victory out of the defeat we were all feeling. The MOTUC subscription is still my favorite thing to buy and I thought that the DC subscription would be a great way to wrap up teams, get Mattel to give us characters we wanted versus stuff DC or Geoff Johns wanted, to get some figures that might not do well at retail.
A year later, now that the full 2012 line-up has been revealed, I was mostly right. Of the thirteen 2012 Club Eternia figures, I have happily received or will be happily receiving twelve of them. Twelve figures that are welcome additions to my collection and one figure that I wish I could’ve skipped. I’m not mad about it; twelve out of thirteen ain’t bad, right?
I think the first thing that bothers me most is that if Mattel had told us Rocket Red was coming sight unseen, I would’ve been ecstatic. The Rocket Red Brigade was an important part of 80s DC, one of the brigade ended up a member of the Justice League, and became a fan-favorite character though not necessarily a mega-popular one. The Classics line needed a Rocket Red, it just didn’t need this one.
The Rocket Red that Rocket Red fans wanted was the classic look (& specific character) that lasted for nearly two decades and made dozens of appearances. If Rocket Red could be called iconic, we wanted his iconic version. What we got, was the Ivan Reis version, which only appeared in a handful of comics a few years ago before being redesigned again. The funny thing is that I don’t mind this design really. It looked nice in the few comics it appeared in, it looks good as an action figure, but the problem is it just shouldn’t be as big as it is. This version of Rocket Red would be a normal-sized figure, not taking up a precious oversized slot.
I’m not sure where things went wrong. The classic Rocket Red couldn’t have been done under the restrictions placed on this year’s sub. He’s essentially a 100% tool. He’s something that Mattel should’ve avoided all together, but evidently couldn’t because DC selected him for the subscription and specified that he be in this short-lived Johns/Reis costume. I don’t know if Mattel could’ve done anything about it.
Could’ve they have said, “ok, the Reis one is good, we’ll make a 6” version of it” or was it too late to move him out of an oversized slot at that point? Did someone care enough to try or was just this an unfortunate error that couldn’t be fixed? Do we need to look at Mattel and say, “don’t do this again” or look at DC Licensing and say something meaner. Continue to Page 2…
62 thoughts on “DC Classics.Com Club Infinite
Earths Rocket Red Review”
What makes this even MORE frustrating is they made that Adam Strange figure. You KNOW at least some of that tooling could’ve been reused to cut costs…
I hadn’t thought about him actually, but that’s true!
Geoff is a god to them I guess so, they do dumb crap like this. Mine is still in the box. Mattel shoulda polled us on the design for this one.
The whispers at the conventions imply that it’s not Mattel that wants to make all the Geoff Johns versions. Which version is made must be approved by DC licensing. Neither Mattel or the collectors can override their edicts.
-Can you talk a little about the design choices for Rocket Red so fans will understand why these elements were chosen?
-This was completely a choice from the Horsemen and Mattel design in order to maximize shared parts and deliver a unique figure.
I go more with the shared parts idea than DC licensing
AFI’s Julius reported that DC selected Rocket Red for the sub and that DC licensing selected the version. As for the elements chosen to make the figure (like the question asked) that would all be done by the Four Horsemen, so the answer isn’t in conflict with where the figure originated. The only remaining issue is who decided it would be a build-a-figure.
Hey Noisy, you HAVE to check this out, it’s hilarious. Talk about poetic justice and telepathic innuendo… Yes sirs!! RR is dead in so many ways!!!!!!!!!!!!
I think that’s the final issue, too. The JLI did not fare well in the New 52.
not quite, there’s still the #0 issue in September, and it seems the JLI will be appearing in BATWING of all places, after that?
Thanks for the link, Sander! Now that they killed that version after a handful of appearances, he’s due a figure, right? 😉
Yeah, the comic rumors have been talking about a new version of Justice League to replace that one.
I can’t get over those diapers. But your dio pics made him more endearing somehow. I say we go with our inner toy collector. Otherwise, eBay the sucker.
Good luck with that… I have mine on eBay for $35 and if he sells for at least that much, I’ll still be losing $7. No bidders, yet.
yeah, I wanted to ebay the Star Sisters, but I hear people are taking big hits IF they can sell the set. only the true die hard POP fans are biting on that.
i’d scrap them for customs… by now, if you have a goddess, her pelvis has shattered/is near shattering, swap her limbs onto one of the sisters… use the other two for target practice, whatev.
that’s the only reason I bought them, for customs, but there’s no character that they can easily be turned into. Purple chick could MAYBE be Lilandra, but that’s it.
Might give a set to my niece while they’re visiting this week from NYC?
I was going to get my cousin a Dana/Zuul, but not at $25+!
My inner toy collector is usually wiser than the license-slave…
I don’t think I’ll eBay him anytime soon. Vault did eBay has and got the $30 back, but I still “have them all” (well, I missing two, but…). He won’t survive the first purge though…
Great review, as always, Noisy! As a TF fan, I especially liked the slam from Optimus.
And, hey, if anyone cites Rocket Red as a reason to avoid the new sub, somebody can just link them to this review. Isn’t it worth your $30-45 for this level of comedy? I submit that it is.
Originally, I left OP trying to cheer him up and the other figures groaning, but I decided it was best to come straight from Prime’s mouth. 😉
I don’t normally comment on these comics-character reviews — as good as they are — because comics have never been a massive part of my life and as such, I never really collected the toys. Never really gave a tinker’s dam.
But I’m always happy to chime in with an idea. If you’re looking for someone for this guy to hang out with, what about the football / baseball robots? He’s about the same size, and frankly, he looks more like the barsinistrous offspring of Casey Jones and Tony Stark than an actual superhero. All he needs to complete his ex-treeeeeeeeeme sporting image is a tiny Gatorade bottle.
um… no, he’s not quite the same size… meet me in the DCUC threads…
He’s bigger, right?
The only thing I could think of that he would fit in with were those handful of DCSH Megos that Hasbro tried out about fifteen years ago. The styles woudn’t match, but the scale would be close.
He does make for a good unnamed Iron Man villain, I’m told…
“The classic Rocket Red couldn’t have been done under the restrictions placed on this year’s sub. He’s essentially a 100% tool.”
I’ve been saying all along Matty could have used the Freeze/Lex armor body with a new head for the RR Brigade armor. I never was a fan of Dmitri’s Apokolips armor, so an armor that came with a sheet of red numbers and we could army build would have been the best option, IN MY OPINION. (which I was bugging Georg about the stickers on the DC Direct boards about for years!)
I do agree with you this version was chosen because someone was butt kissing Geoff, then add to that the “need” for an “oversize” quarterly figure, so they chose to do the Gavril armor on the BAF buck, since he was getting page time in Brightest Day: Justice League: Generation Lost. IN A TOTALLY DIFFERENT ARMOR. The early issues of BD:JL:GL had Gavril in a kitbash armor he was always repairing before he finally settled into the “modern” armor that was created a few years prior, and he then wore into the now ending JLI. WHERE HE WAS PROMPTLY KILLED. oy.
And NOW we get to repeat this next year with LEAD, finally finishing* the Metal Men is a good thing, esp after the “lead paint” fiasco that previously had Matty claiming he was off the table. I even offered up alternative names in one Q&A which got answered right before SDCC and was told they would not change his name. That should have clued us in that he was short-listed, and then we find out he was already in prototype form for SDCC a few weeks later.
UNfortunately, Lead will be using the BAF DARKSEID base which also towers over the rest of the team. I don’t know why they couldn’t use the DCSH Darkseid base, as it does have the width, but isn’t twice the size of the rest of the team. We can’t win for losing.
*(I only speak of finishing the ROBOTS in the Metal Men, not Doc Magnus, who should be an easy suit buck with new head!)
I said essentially. 😉 While your kitbash would be okay, I would want updated lower arms, lower legs, and entire torso, and the head to all match. And in an ideal world, a removable helmet, since we’re wishing.
I think when DC licensing approves these modern versions, it’s essentially Geoff buttkissing Geoff.
Strangely, I’m not the least bit upset about Lead. (this is why it’s hard to run a toy site, a problem in one review isn’t in another… hypocrisy abounds!) I know that his “bigger” is wider and not taller, but the group shot at SDCC did look good to me. Maybe because he always seemed to be getting bigger spreading out to protect the team? I don’t know. I do agree that the ol’ DCSH body would’ve worked just fine, but that one gets a pass from me (at least for now).
This photo series is priceless. I just love this.
Please don’t skip a review of DCUC Atrocitus!
We won’t! You’ll see him and Starman reviewed soon. We’re just a bit behind!
I like this figure much more than I thought I would. I as well wish that his hand rockets are a separate piece. This must be the one time I have complained about a sculpted element on a DCUC!!! I actually use him as an Iron Man villain. Giant Russian robot person? Sounds like an Iron Man villain. Hilarious photos is this review, made my day a little brighter! 😀
And, yeah, he’s a giant russian robot, so Iron Man should be more than happy to kick his ass, right? That seems to be the best use.
I love that pic with Leech. His mouth is sculpted such that I imagine him always yelling when he’s talking.
I love Leech for all the wrong reasons. LOL
I love Cobra Commander’s new duds!
I’m just surprised he signed on with Russia…
The faceplate is driving me crazy. They’re not even mold lines, or flash, the plastic didn’t fill properly, and left gaps. Evey figure I’ve seen has this, and it bugs the crap out of me.
Having the same problem with the arm-blasters. They seem really badly placed.
Otherwise, it’s a fun big robot figure.
I just called ’em flash lines because I was in hurry, I wonder what the technical term for this issue is…
I know, I kinda hate that he’s a fun, big robot figure. I wanted to loathe him!!!
it has to do with the plastic not being hot enough, it’s a flow issue.
not a flow issue, as the face plate is the only area affected. possibly a “dirty” mold? the few times I ran a similar machine at an old job making 3D/raised magnets, we’d have to blow it out every few minutes or toss the crosshatched ones back in the grinder. This is a PRIME example of poor QC.
Love the pics, Noisy! The only thing that could be better than this figure would be if, for the remaining seven slots of the 2013 sub, they made Orange, Red, Indigo, Blue, Green, White and Black Lantern versions of Rocket Red! Wouldn’t that be awesome????????!!!!!????
Yeah, I hate myself.
Thanks! Sure, why not go all out and make Rainbow Rockets???
ROCKET RED IS TOO BIG, MATTEL YOU ARE STUPID
This almost rhymes…
Man, that’s concise. 😉
Starman kinda reminds me of Dmitri.
I can see it.
yup! I ordered extras just for the heads for another Dmitri (unmasked this time) and Chief for Doom Patrol.
and they’re finally shipping after all this time!!!
I should have them by next week!
Out of curiosity, what was RR’s MOTU name that Leech was proposing? Is RR talking over it because it ain’t family-friendly? };D
I’ll never tell. LOL
Noisy, I’ve been waiting with bated breath for your review and pictures of this figure…and you did not disappoint!
I totally sympathize with your cunundrum: How do you give a good review to a figure that’s made well and looks pretty great, but is so completely out of scale that it’s all you can focus on when you look at it? And in the wrong costume, to boot! And they were just so damn adamant that he was to-scale every time they were questioned in various “Ask Matty” forums. And God-forbid they include “number” stickers so that RR could at least be used as an army builder. It’s like they WANT to piss us off sometimes. But, yeah, the figure they sent me looks pretty cool. I guess.
Thanks, TC! This was one I was dreading. I really had no idea how to approach it. I didn’t want it to be a bitchfest, but how do you stress to Mattel not to do this again without that?
Yeah, what was Leech gonna call him?
I’m guessing Big Red, which is not only a gum but also Hellboy’s callsign.
I’ll refrain from the more dirty options. 🙂
My lips are sealed. 😉
Also, great essay that’s going round the net this year, Wakko!
Maybe I’m weird in that the scale doesn’t bug me as much as the overall football player wearing a diaper look. I hate the veins in the armor on the arms. The scale is terrible too, don’t get me wrong, but not the worst thing for me.
If they’d been able to do give him some more robotic-looking limbs, it would’ve helped all around – but then been totally inaccurate. No winning with this guy.
I’ll take my one from my sub, but here’s where Mattel lost me: I would have bought multiples from the day-of sale to army-build and customize. When they made him out of scale, they lost 4-5 more purchases. Whoops.
A couple of things: I was optimistic that this suit might reflect the Joe Staton version that was designed back in the mid-80s in GLC. Course, upon googling that design, I realized it wasn’t nearly as close as I remembered. Second, this scale is so bafflingly large, that it doesn’t even fit in with my DC DIRECY J.L.I. figs! My sad, lonely pant-suit Black Canary can’t even make friends with this RR. 🙁
i like this figure … the scale did’t bother me.. but the price did…
remmeber when you could get an entire series of figures with a baf this big for the the exact same price…sigh…
Haha, Noisy, that comic’s hilarious. Illustrates yours and all of our disgrntled-ness perfectly.
I was so excited about this figure that I completely missed the review! (can you sense my sarcasm) I enjoyed the pictures though. My thoughts on the actual figure pretty much mirror your own. I think it’s a nice looking figure but the scale is super off. I thought maybe it wouldn’t look so bad with the other figures but it stands out as badly as Lobo did before him. Oh well, this wil most likely be the only year we have a sub to complain about anyway.
Glad I was wrong on this last point!
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