As you can guess by the content here at IAT, I’m a little more keyed in on the Mattel reveals than other companies. While Digital River spoiled most of Mattel’s Toy Fair news (though I’ve heard some say it was done purposefully), the panel still proved important for the info to go along with the images.
Classic Batman TV Series
I’m going to go a little out of order from the panel and kick off with the ’66 Batman news. I’ve had a surprisingly large amount of people writing to see what I thought about it since I skipped it in last week’s article.
To be honest, I don’t know what to think. I’m about equal parts “That’s Awesome!!!” and “Do I really need these?”. I love the idea of them to be sure, but I’m not sure if the line can be what I want it to be if I go all-in. I’m not sure the market would bear (or Mattel would risk) really going after the line-up I’d want. Part of my affinity for that show was due to villains like King Tut, False-Face, or Egghead. Do we live in a world where those can be produced? I don’t know. Mattel is sending mixed signals too. They appear to be playing it safe showing Batman, Robin, Riddler, & Penguin right off (Mattel noted that ‘at least’ 3 figures are in the pipeline, Catwoman & Joker surely being two slots). There is some hope for the line to be more unique thanks to “Surf’s Up Batman” and his bat-surfboard though (via AFI). It’s no Egghead, but it’s amusing!
Even if the line can’t get deep into the show’s roster (Alfred? Chief O’Hara? Mad Hatter?), it did show off some nice figures. I’d like the line to feel a little more collectible – a Frank Gorshin Riddler with the eye mask around his neck would be a great alternate portrait, but this is Mattel and not NECA. Mattel did do a great job on the Batmobile though! It looks beautiful, feels like a steal at $50, and I’ll even rescind my intense dislike for cloth capes so the figures can sit in it. So far all the figures shown (Batman, Riddler, Penguin, Surf’s Up Batman) are single-carded with the exception of Robin (via AFI). He’ll be available in a 2pk along with a wall-mountable… uh, wall base (via AFI). I like the idea, but it’s just not going to be as cool since it’ll lay flat on the wall with no way to have Sammy Davis, Jr or Dick Clark pop out to say hello. (And damn, I’d need Green Hornet & Kato figures in this style too…)
So what’s my take? I do want ’em, but I don’t know if I’ll buy them yet. Most likely? Any resolve melts when I see them on the pegs.
2013 Club Infinite Earths:
The big club news was spoiled by Digital River: Fire. I still like the idea of a flame-on version better, but the figure looks sharp and has me longing to complete a Doomsday-era JLI roster I’m like the one person in the world that would love to have Bloodwynd in Club Infinite Earths!!). The good news is taht Mattel specifically pointed that Fire was part of the “Fire & Ice” duo, so we may see Ice at SDCC. If I were Mattel, I’d split tons of duos across two years of subscriptions. Imagine Fire & Johnny Thunder in 2013 as teasers to get you buy Ice & Thunderbolt in 2014? It’d work on me for sure.
Mattel also provided the upcoming schedule at right. I’m not sure if it’s right though. Previously, a schedule-MIA Red Hood (via AFI) was listed for July, Huntress for September, and no August figure was given. We’ll get more info on that as we get closer, but it should be correct through June as long as nothing changes.
There were a few DC Comics retail surprises that Digital River couldn’t screw-up though. At lot of the Mattel retail items will not be featured here at IAT. Vault may review the occasional New52 figure, but I’m planning on passing on the lot including the most recent reveals of Darkseid & Aquaman. The DC Unlimited line is also slated to contain the Injustice Superman, Batman (via AFI), & Joker figures. Those figures make the New 52 figures look good, so I wouldn’t expect to see those reviewed here at all.
The Batman Unlimited line is a different story though. While I’ll be skipping a fair share of the Batman Unlimited figures like the upcoming Beware the Batman Batman & Anarky (I’ve yet to see any pics of those though), I will buy a few like the recently revealed a matte-finished, winged Batman Beyond (via AFI) and Damian Wayne (via AFI). I was happy to see those there and Damian Wayne gives me some hope that Mattel will eventually get a Dick Grayson Batman out to retail.
2013 Club Black Freighter:
Watchmen: Club Black Freighter
Finally, in DC news is the lone Watchmen reveal: the Comedian. He looks great and I’m thankful for the two accessories (shotgun & flamethrower w/ backpack), but if any figure from Watchmen needed some alternate heads it was this one: masked, unscarred, grey temples, etc. And, again, the lack of the licensed smiley face isn’t a big deal. If you find a teacher, I’m sure they know where to find smiley face stickers that small!