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Watchmen: Club Black Freighter
Doctor Manhattan Review

One of the lines I’m most excited about this year is the comic-based Watchmen line. Yes, it’s from Mattel and that does mean there is the potential for an issue or two, but this is line I’ve wanted for so long that Mattel doesn’t have to do much to get it right. Well, turns out they could do a little more…

I probably don’t have to explain too much about Watchmen to most IAT readers, but just in case, Doctor Manhattan is one of the six main characters in the book. After becoming trapped in an “Intrinsic Field Subtractor”, Dr. Jon Osterman was disintegrated to atoms. His consciousness survived, however, and Osterman was able to reassemble himself into the blue-skinned demigod shown here. He can control matter at the subatomic level and experiences time simultaneously. He’s basically all-powerful & all-knowing, but that has brought on a fantastic disassociation with his surroundings. He chooses to experience rather than effect.

Manhattan replaced Captain Atom when the Charlton characters were removed from the story and I imagine that affected the story drastically. Captain Atom, a nuclear-based hero, wouldn’t have been able to play the same role as the quantum-based Manhattan.

I love Manhattan in the book and he also ended up being one of my favorite parts of the film – though the guy could use some pants, c’mon! Since he’s a favorite, this is definitely a figure I had to have on my shelves. I’ve clamored for the Bruckner-sculpted DC Direct figures that were scrapped nearly fifteen years ago. I wanted to pick up the movie figures so many times, but what I really wanted was comic-based figures. And while I’m happy to finally have these guys in plastic, Dr. Manhattan & Mattel are trying my patience a little more than they should.

Dr. Manhattan was probably always going to be the weak link in the line (cross your fingers). The guy doesn’t need much more than the basic buck to get the job done. As such, I would’ve liked to see Mattel do something a little extra for him, maybe some simple props like the photograph or perfume bottle, or how about a slightly different stand that would let him float? But, no, he gets nothing.

I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt – maybe the five new pieces (head, hands, & feet) just about broke the budget. Or maybe he’s the figure Mattel can cash in on a little to afford more tooling for the others. I have no idea. And I’m not going to hold that against the figure. Continue to Page 2…

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22 comments to Watchmen: Club Black Freighter
Doctor Manhattan Review

  • Cade

    Why would mattel start making sure team members match era wise now?

    • LOL That’s true, but I just want to damn them a little here – there’s only six figures!

      I’m just telling myself that the left side of his head is from the era I want…

      • Cade

        that head thing is truly weird.

      • Brainlock

        wasn’t there talk of expanding into a second wave for Watchmen/BF?
        I’m not sure how they would do that, the Minutemen? The DCD movie series covered both eras, and the yellow jumpsuit Comedian and Capt. Metropolis would be nice additions that haven’t been done before.

    • Adam

      *weeps for Changeling and Perez Zatanna*

  • He-Mullet

    The one thing that would make him pop! is the one thing Mattel will NEVER do… Aaand I’m sure we won’t see any “Comic Book Accurate” Doctor Manhattan customs either.

  • Andy

    Wow, when I opened him, I just thought he was rather plain. Now that all these flaws have been pointed out, I’m even more bummed 🙁

  • Freefire

    Ulp, now I’m bobbing my head, playing that song in my head, lol! Classic.

    I am not a huge fan of Watchmen, so I guess Im ok with having passed on this sub. I hope the rest of them are more along the lines of what you are looking for.

  • Bigbot

    I haven’t been impressed with any of the Watchmen figures so far, and it sucks that the figure you got has a misshapen head. However, seeing those blue feet I’m now wondering how they’d look on a MOTU Skeletor to create a Millennium version. They’re probably too small, but if I can get Manhattan on the cheap (hoping for a Black Friday sale) I might pick him up.

  • Brainlock

    wow. that head really sucks. How did they screw that up?

    I was leery about the Black Freighter sub, but went ahead and bought into it…before DR decided I couldn’t change my card. @_@
    (actually, Dan and Laurie are the ones I’m really looking forward to, followed by Comedian.)

    The shorts seem a little too big, as he did wear what was essentially a thong in most of those scenes. Even just leaving the black off the leg, possibly the hip joint would have worked for me. I guess they had to explain the “wrinkled” hip area, tho? As for a “naked” Jon, look at Cap Atom, he’s not wearing ANY clothes, just his alien armor for skin. (You did know the chest sigil, “boots”, and “gloves” were just injected paint, right?)

    also, why are my ears burning?
    😉

  • dayraven

    you know, even a more pearlescent plastic would have been fly here, something to make the guy pop a little. oh, and having skull symmetry, that too. this is what you get the horsemen aren’t doing mattel’s sculpting.

    • dayraven

      oh, one other note, more folks might be commenting on the night at the roxbury photo is you’d included the title of the song “what is love” by haddaway, the line that most folks recognize. one love

      • Bigbot

        I forgot to comment on that pic. Loved it, now I can see three Manhattans in a car just bobbing their heads to the song.

    • Fury

      Sadly, I believe the 4H are sculpting the Watchmen line.

  • Tom

    I knew there wouldn’t be much to Dr. Manhattan, but since Rorschach came with a gun, you’d think they could have slipped some kind of accessory in with him. He had minimal sculpt of new parts, so Mattel is being frugal to probably have more to put towards Nite Owl and The Comedian. Wouldn’t have been cool to have Dr. Manhattan come with a Bubastis? Even as a non-moving figure, he would be there to help complete Ozymandias later in the line.

    • Brainlock

      Bubastis might have been nice, but you also forget, she would be about the same size as the rest of the figures. then people would want the same artic as Battle Cat/Panthor, which would be more tooling costs, esp for the new head. Unless they can find a cheap way to downsize the BC mold, I’m not going to hold my breath.

      • Well, they could get some nice cross-pollination out of such a Bubastis mould, if they made her fully-articulated. I can instantly think of three more toys you could get out of it: Cringer (new head), Panther-Form Catra (new head and armour), and Panther-Form Beast Boy (green Catra parts, no armour).

        And I’m sure there must be other opportunities, with a little imagination. Catwoman and “animal buddy,” for example.

        • TC

          I love these suggestions, man! Matty will never do it (it’s too easy a solution) but still…great ideas!

  • dayraven mentions pearlescent plastic above, but I can’t help but think glow-in-the-dark blue would’ve been the perfect choice for Dr. M.

    • Faugh

      Oh God, that would’ve made it a must-buy for me.

      So it’s probably good that they didn’t.

  • Grazie per il vostro articolo, mi sembra molto utile, proverò senz’altro a sperimentare quanto avete indicato… c’è solo una cosa di cui vorrei parlare più approfonditamente, ho scritto una mail al vostro indirizzo al riguardo.