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 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.
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.
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…