Watchmen: Club Black Freighter
Silk Spectre II Review

The other main new piece is the head. I wasn’t sold on it at first, but it’s grown on me. The expression is a little placid… distant, but the sculpt is still sharp overall. It’s probably one of the best looking female head sculpts in the DC line, but that’s not exactly high praise considering the competition. Still, I have come around to liking it and it’s helped me better enjoy the figure overall.

Articulation is really the one area where the figure does disappoint. The usual Mattel junk is here – the lack of rocker ankles, the hair making the neck articulation virtually useless, but there are a couple other specific unfavorables too. First, the hips are those gummy Wonder Girl / Star Sapphire hips that don’t quite line up and look funny in anything but a vanilla pose. Second is the articulation that has been removed to cut down on piece count, not able the torso/ab crunch and bicep swivels. I hate not having bicep swivels in particular, but the missing ab crunch is particularly noticeable on female figures that can’t move their heads. If you want Silk Spectre to look up or forward, you have to figure out a balanced posed at her hips or knees. That’s awfully far down to start when you’re trying to get a figure to be looking at something in particular in a display.

Unlike the articulation, the paint work was a highlight on my figure. The face in particular was sharply done. As was the black details on the costume like the belt, cuffs, and shoes. Most notable though is the aforementioned fleshtone highlights on the arms to help give the illusion of the see-thru dress. It almost works which is saying something for a costume that is difficult for a figure to pull off.

Silk Spectre included no accessories beyond her Watchmen stand. This is really one of the major drawbacks to this $25 a pop line (plus shipping). There are so many great little props in Watchmen that would make fantastic accessories. It’s a crime Mattel couldn’t find a way to get them in there.

Overall, Silk Spectre isn’t a bad figure. Watchmen, as a line, is not the classic the book was. We’re halfway through and only one figure has really impressed me. I’m going to put Silk Spectre right in the middle of the range. Mattel really tried some cool stuff with the dress and how the arms were painted and the head sculpt really sell the figure, but Mattel also shot themselves in the foot by cutting some key articulation and not really being able to make the figure feel like it was worth what I paid for it with some accessories (or top-shelf articulation, yes I’m going to keep harping on it).

Still, I’m excited for the rest of the line. The next three figures should be great and hopefully I can look back on this line fondly after I have that second half.

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20 thoughts on “Watchmen: Club Black Freighter
Silk Spectre II Review

  1. Many assumed Spectre was a direct parallel to Nightshade, as she was originally a martial arts expert with a few gadgets before getting any powers. Moore later clarified that he used Black Canary as her inspiration, instead, which does lend itself to the whole “legacy character” aspect, as DC had revealed a few years before the “real origin” of JLA-Canary being the daughter of GA/JSA-Canary implanted with her mother’s memories. yeah, creepy.

    This was later reflected in the comics when Ted Kord was helping out Dinah and Barb with Birds of Prey and he struck up a flirtation with Dinah, who had been separated from Ollie for a while. The BOP writer (Gail Simone?) confirmed it was a nod to the Watchmen characters that were based off those two.
    (btw, Jon and Laurie were never married in the comic, so that gag is off.)

    SS is one of the figures in this line I was looking forward to, but it seems I’m going to have to wait for a while, then get lucky.

    I figured the torso would be limited due to the rubber sleeve, so that was a given. Not sure why they didn’t use the Zatanna shoulder, but I guess it was too square? on the bright side, I think a few Lady Legionnaires could use this one. (70s/hotpants Supergirl! hinthint!) How thick IS that sleeve? You say it sits high on the shoulder, but I would think they went for the cheapest rubber available (not helping!) instead of a thin clear vinyl sleeve. The only other option I can think of is a yellow mesh, but look at how Canary and Zatanna’s fishnets turned out. Badly.

    The head looks a little off, but it might be those two hairs plastered in the middle of her forehead. Comic accurate, but that’s about it. Also I’m wondering if the left earring wasn’t reversed in the book? It just looks odd to me.

    Accessories- what did she have, other than that cigarette bong? her purse? I know I’ve seen people asking for an extension with Bubastis or turn her into the line’s CnC, but that’s really pushing it, even if the CnC part would have others feeling they got their money’s worth.

    Who’s next, Comedian? Have we seen pics of him, Nite-Owl, and Ozymandias yet?

  2. I find it rather funny they made her necklace, lips, and Mole her logo on both the box and included card. Yet when the painted the head, they didn’t include the mole.

  3. I believe the remaining order for the WATCHMEN line is: Nite-Owl, Comedian and then Ozymandias. Pictures have been shown of Owl and Comedian. They were debut at TOYFAIR, although Owl made a brief sneak appearance at last years NYCC. No images of Ozy yet. I’d assume he will be shown at the SDCC.

    1. “The final figure, shipping in November, will surely be the smartest one in your collection.”
      Thats what it says on the sub page on Matty. If its not Oz, i cant imagine who it would be.

  4. Each time one of these figs is up on Matty, I’m a little tempted to buy one. Have passed each time. Something has just always seemed a little off on each fig. Rorshach’s tiny hat, Manhattan’s head, SS’s arms. As awesome as the source material is, this line just doesn’t do it for me. Chalk it up to more “meh-ttel” toys, I guess.

    Still, I appreciate the reviews, and keep reading them. Here’s hoping for an awesome Night-Owl!

    1. they’ll probably give Dan the YJ Batman cape, so he won’t be able to move his arms.
      (altho, a “Arctic/Snow Owl” overcloak would be an awesome idea!)

  5. I, too, really appreciate the reviews. It makes a day a little more fun. 🙂

    This is a line that I really don’t feel a bit sad I wasn’t able to ‘buy in’ due to lack of CC. (it would be suicide to sub up with a pre-pay debit card. I’d have to make sure I ALWAYS had several hundred Dollars loaded every month and that’s a lot of money tied up)

    I just can’t believe how Meh every figure is. Like Lemmy says above, it’s ALWAYS something, some annoying little…THING that just shouldn’t be ‘off’ but is.

    Heck, what’s the excuse? Does this fit under the various edicts pronounced over the DCU figures? Is it a case of ‘day late and Dollar short’ (because the TIME to push these may well have been when the darn movie came out, ya know?) or maybe not feeling confident that the pre-release buzz for ‘Before Watchmen’ could carry the line all the way? Or just maybe, just maybe, they don’t really give a f**k about the figures because all this line was meant to be was a giant ‘up yours, crazy old man’ to Alan Moore.

    Silk Spectre II should be HOT. There is not a single drop of erotic fire in that lump of plastic. Yes, I said it. 🙂

    1. you never saw the DC Direct prototypes from 8-9 years ago, did you?
      blew these (and the DCD movie versions) out of the water.

      1. Doctor Manhattan’s head sculpt aside, those cancelled DCDs were about as average as these.

      2. What really hurts for me is the paint job on Rorschach; I HATE the way his “face” looks.

        It looks like a silhoutte of an Edward G. Robinson stereotype to me.

        The Comedian’s “face” didn’t really do it for me either when I saw the prototype; so far the only one that’s really impressed me was the Nite Owl, and I’m not so in love with the figure that it convinces me to buy the others.

        I have the movie versiona, I might buy the DC Direct 12″ Rorschach, and the Pop! vinyl figure, the metal figures, possibly the HeroClix, and I think I’m good.

    2. agreed there stevie, there’s nothing about this spectre that makes me want to toss her onto the console of the owlship and do her till she screams… fail.

  6. I think this figure definitely needed cloth goods. The dress is meant to be a sheer gossamer like fabric, and instead we get a fetish rubber suit for water-sports.

  7. I was excited for this line. And then Mattel happened. I really only want Ozymandias. I hope he turns out better than they have been. I suppose the worst they could do is make him undersized, like Golden Age Atom sized (who was ironically too tall LOL)

  8. These figures are almost as disappointing as the Before Watchmen comics 🙁

    1. I refuse to read Before Watchmen.

      Alan Moore had nothing to do with it, so I know it will never live up to the classic story he wrote nearly 30 years ago.

  9. For a while, I had hoped that after the Watchmen run ended, Mattel would continue the trend of offering a secondary DC line (I personally hoped for a Kingdom Come or Wildstorm line while a friend of mine was desperately hoping for a Sandman line). However, after seeing these, I wouldn’t feel comfortable committing so much money to a subscription where I run the risk of receiving disappointing figures. Oh well, I guess I can just try to chase those 60’s era Batman figures from store to store once they’re released, lol.

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