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DCClassics.Com: Wave 7
(Atom Smasher) Retro Review

We’ve been a little busy lately and one of the projects that has fallen by the wayside is the completion of our DC Classics Review Archive. For the next few weeks, barring a few current reviews to keep us relevant, we’re bringing back our Retro Review as a regular Wednesday feature. This week’s look into the past takes us back DC Classics 7, the Atom Smasher Wave.

Though many of the figures in this wave found a saturation point as pegwarmers, that wasn’t always the case. Believe it or not, Atom Smasher was the C&C it took me the longest to complete. It took even longer (& 1300 miles) for me to find a Flash. Afterwards, I decided I was done trying to get DC Classics that way.


Flash


Flash is one of my all-time favorite figures in the line. It’s not all the figure, I suppose. I think the Flash has one of the best costumes in comics.* I’ve been a Flash fan ever since I was wee tot. That’s important, because this figure meets my expectations as a lifelong Flash fan. Mattel will be releasing a darker red & gold trim figure later this year and I’m tempted to buy it even though it’s not really accurate to any of Barry’s appearances.

* – I like the costume so much, I’m starving for the variations: Reverse Flash, Wally West, Walter West/Dark Flash, Black Flash. Heck, a Lady Flash would be cool too.**

** – That will never happen, I know.

Flash is one the figures where the Mattel Buck System™ doesn’t negatively impact the final product. Flash required only a new head and then new lower legs and feet to create his trademark boots. Even with the shortage of new pieces, there are two nice touches on this figure: the tread on the soles of the boots and that the four wingtips (on his cowl and boot tops) are made of a soft, pliable plastic so they don’t snap off. Other than those, Flash is molded entirely in red with thick paint apps on the boots and face and a clean tampo on the symbol.

Flash was the first figure to include a stand in the DC Classics line and came with no other accessories. I should take a minute to point out that I loathe the blue DCUC stands. Flash is a great example of why they’re inadequate. He features enough articulation to put him in a variety of cool running poses, but it’s not easy to balance him on the stand in hardly any of them.

Kid Flash


I don’t have much nice to stay about this figure. I placed him next to Hal Jordan hoping some of the tremendous amounts of cool Hal’s supposedly has would rub off. I’m just not a big fan of the buck. I’ve never looked into the 4H’s vision for this buck, whether it was intended to be this height or not. It doesn’t work for the modern late-teen Robin that it was first used on in DCUC3 or the early 20s Beast Boy it was used on DCUC10. Kid Flash is probably the best use of the buck, but it makes him an early Teen Titans version of Kid Flash. If a sixties Donna Troy, and pre-pubescent versions of Robin, Speedy, and Aqualad are in the cards, then I’ll be okay with it in the long run. But with Starfire, Cyborg, 70s Donna, and presumably Raven being in the line, the Sinestro buck might have been a better choice here so Wally could be his NTT height.

On its own, the figure is a good sculpt, faithfully recreates the classic look, and has good articulation save the head, which can only swivel. And I do like it more when I look at it and think it bears a strong resemblance to Conan O’Brien.

Captain Cold


You’ve seen this guy on the pegs right? For awhile, I think it was in TRU’s contract with Mattel that each store have 2 Captain Colds on the peg at all times. I never saw a TRU without two in any of my travels. But don’t think he was a pegwarmer because he was a bad figure! He was a pegwarmer because Mattel hasn’t been managing Best of cases well since they started doing them. Cold came packed two to a case in the first assortment of Wave 7, then one to a case in the second assortment, then he kept getting included in “Best Of” assortments until the stores could bear no more.* I don’t know for certain, but it might not have been the best choice to include the old man in the parka over and over. Continue to Page 2…

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26 comments to DCClassics.Com: Wave 7
(Atom Smasher) Retro Review

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  • Rob7274

    Great!!! Thanks Noisey. I’ve been looking everyday to see if you’d put a retro review up of a DC wave and you didnt disapoint.
    I was starting to worry though.

    Im just finishing Wave 7 now as im on catch up. As it’s been easyer to get wave 7 Ive pushed it back in favour of Wave’s 1,4,6,8 & 9 before these get to expensive. (like wave’s 2,3 & 5)

    Thanks again 🙂

    • 😀 I said I would! I hoping for a little quicker, but still it’s up!

      Waves 6/7 ended up being some of the easier sets to put together, but I didn’t think so at the time. Our Target and TRU dried up and only one Wal-Mart in 75 miles would carry the darn things.

      I’ll try and kept 1-4 up sooner rather than later… 😉

  • Singh

    Great review, Noisy. Love the montages!

  • Sentinel

    I gotta ask… did you plan for Captain Cold to be blocking Booster in the last pic?

  • Tom

    I think I’ve seen the Freeze pic before. On AD or Poe’s maybe.

    • It’s about a year old. I do believe Poe featured it as one of his Pic of the Days or an It Figures back before IAT existed.

  • AllMindsAboutEverything

    Great review. Are you going to do ALL the old figures? DCSH too?

  • Yso

    DCU Classic Classics?

  • StrangePlanet

    “Flash is one the figures where the Mattel Buck System™ doesn’t negatively impact the final product.”

    I heartily disagree.

    Don’t get me wrong, when I saw the Flash in the shelves, I thought it looked really keen. It’s a beautiful piece in it’s way.

    But it’s all wrong for the Flash.
    Slapping the Flash costume on that body looks really wrong because that body is way too big and buff for that character. Because of that I didn’t buy him. That plus more articulation that would really allow him to get into some good deep running poses is not present on that body either.

    I know the 4H are making a bunch of very big, very buff bodies for superheros, and many of them work great. But for the Flash? Nope. Not for me anyway.

    I hope that when they go after Wally they incorporate some nice double elbows and knees and put it on a new slimmer buck.

    • I can see wanting a slimmer buck on him for sure.

      I think that I approach the line wanting them to be roughly the same generic shape/size. I think height is very important, but I after that I don’t need a lot of body styles. It might be a leftover Super Powers thing.

  • David S.

    I’m still a big fan of this wave. One of the best from last year.

  • Lay Ze-Man

    Ahhh . . . DCUC7 . . . the Wave that broke me. 😀

    But seriously, I’m pretty sure I was 100% completist until this Wave.

    Then the combination of non-essential figures (blue Aquaman? Booster with vaguely different outfit?) and inability to find them all at retail made me seriously rethink my DCUC collecting habits as a whole.

    After I assembled everyone from this Wave (sole exception being Barda w/hair) I took stock of what I had, and downsized my DCUC’s by roughly half, I’d guess.

    My display is more streamlined, I’m freed from the pressures of completist buying, and from there on out could look to getting only the figures I WANTED to get, and not those I NEEDED to.

    (Not considering C&C parts that I end up “needing”, LOL.)

    So, I suppose I owe a certain debt of gratitude to DCUC7.
    Oh, and to you Noisy, for this cool look back! 🙂

    • I still have them all (well, technically, the Muddy Batman and I are waiting to tango on clearance), but I do get closer and closer to not wanting to bother. These new 2pks are questionable. They Aquaman/BM looks cool (you have to see the Manta up close), but it’s not necessary. MetallaHal v4 isn’t high on my list either.

      I’m not feeling a high pressure to complete Trigon right now either, but I want most of the wave. And I’m excited for 14/15. These lulls are mercy on the Wal-Mart, but I’d be lying if I said my interest didn’t wane.

      • Rob7274

        Oh thats sad…. I like the little communitie I got into when I decided to collect these (the first line ive got into since I was younger). But it seems people are losing interest (poe ghostal) due to price increase’s and bad QC (in wave 13 anyway). I arn’t a completionist but I do get all the different characters (like both steppenwolf’s). Just miss out the two spectors or deadman.

        Could not avoid muddy batman though 🙂

        • Don’t worry. I didn’t say I’m getting out. I’m just questioning the need to have “them all”. The website kinda magnifies that feeling and I’m not always comfortable with it. 😉

  • 3B

    “Atom-smasher”, that was hilarious!

    My first DCUC figure was Harley. Which I purchased for my wife and that was about this time last year, maybe earlier in ’09. I’d purscased a Superman & Batman from the DCSH line, when they first debuted, but not much else. I never collected ML save a couple of purchases. I had seen DCUC on the shelves, but it wasn’t something I was really able to get into when they started up. But, believe it or not, my first DCUC figure (or at least the one that turned me on to collecting DCUC) was Blue Beetle!

    I saw him on the shelf at Wal-mart one day in June/July of 2009 and I thought he looked awesome. Then I saw what Atom Smasher looked like complete and I decided I had to assemble him. Since then I haven’t stopped buying DCUC and I’m currently at 81 figures! Also, collecting DCUC is what led me to your fantastic site last summer!

    Thanks!

    • 3B

      *actually, I purchased Harley in March of 2009.

    • LOL I always wonder if some of the jokes are too subtle. 😉

      I’ve been buying these since DCSH1 (well, technically, I have some of the Batman figures too). I’m not sure how many I have. Too many, that’s for sure. 😀

  • TheMonkeyKing

    I don’t collect DCUC, but I have a soft spot for the “Rodney Dangerfield” characters. The guys that “get no respect”. Red Tornado, Ronnie Raymond/Firestorm, Aquaman, the true dynamic duo Blue Beetle and Booster Gold. Now I’m looking forward to that future Fire & Ice 2-pack.

    • You’re listing some favorites there for me!

      I always view Kyle and Connor Hawke as two big characters that have a hard time getting some respect.