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DCClassics.Com Retro
Review: Wave 3 – Solomon Grundy

As we work to make DCClassics.Com a complete review archive, we occasionally have to turn back the clock and review figures that were released before IAT was founded. This week, we’re taking a look at the third wave of DC Classics, the Solomon Grundy wave. I pieced Grundy together in late 2008 at a time when I wasn’t very happy with the line overall. In “favorite wave” polls, I usually see this one ranking high, if not first, in the results. I always find that funny, because Wave Three almost got me to drop the line.

When DC Classics was announced I was as happy as every other DC fan that the DCSH line was not only going to expand to the full DCU, but would include larger figures through a C&C system. Some of that excitement faded after the first couple waves though. Partially, because I wasn’t very happy with Metamorpho or Grodd and partially because I had to piece together the waves slowly – I couldn’t strike the motherload and grab the whole wave at once. And sometimes when I did find them, the quality control, or lack thereof, forced me to leave them behind. While I was excited to have Firestorm, the Electric Supermen, and the best figure of Aquaman by any company, I just wasn’t feeling good about the line’s future. None of the wave three characters were favorites and combined with delays and the hassle, I was quickly losing interest. I told Vault and Rant, on more than one occasion, that I was done.

Ultimately, images of future figures like Wonder Woman and Cyborg combined with the desire to “have them all” and I stayed in, for good or bad. I’m happy I did because some of my favorite figures of all-time are in this line. But wave three still mocks me, though for a very different reason, which I’ll get to after we take a look at the figures.

Green Lantern Hal Jordan

Hal Jordan is the reimagining of the Golden Age Green Lantern crimefighter into a galactic policeman. Hal was a fearless test pilot that received a ring because he was closer to his dying predecessor, Abin Sur, than other candidates. Hal’s had his ups and downs – and a few laterals – since then, but in the last few years he’s returned as the title character and is back doing what he does best, living the fanboy’s ultimate dream: flying futuristic jets, scoring babes, looking good, and weilding one of the most powerful weapons in the universe.


Didn’t I just review Hal Jordan? Man… he’s everywhere! This is the first of his four DC Classics figure and for many is the one they’re using in their displays. This deco is Hal in his primary outfit from his heyday in the late 70s and early 80s before he was cancelled, aged, crazed, depressed, killed, resurrected, and ultimately, rebirthed.*

* – Ewww.

The figure utilizes the standard male buck, requiring only a new right fist (w/ ring) and a new head sculpt. The head sculpt is nicely done. Its molded skintone prevents it from being as nice as DCUC2’s Aquaman, but the sculpt is there regardless. This figure looks like trademark Hal Jordan to me. He’s determined, focused, and ready to punch everyone you know with a giant green first. That’s part of what he does best too. Hey, creativity wasn’t a strong suit, okay?

Paint wasn’t quite up to the par on early waves, but Hal doesn’t suffer too much. His lines are crisp, it’s just that the black pieces painted green don’t quite match up with the molded green pieces. And, as you can see in the photo, his lantern tampo looks good, it just needs to be a little more level and centered. On my Hal, his ring is painted in a metallic paint, while Vault’s and Rant’s are painted in a dull green (more on that later…).

Hal also included a lantern accessory because, at that point in the line, almost everyone got at least one accessory. It’s a good sculpt, but it’s not my favorite. It’s one of the few times that I prefer a DCD item to DCUC. I think that the Four Horsemen had an older lantern design in mind when they made it. I’m more familiar with the modern design with a larger center and smaller lenses. It’s a good sculpt, just not my cup of tea. It would probably help if Mattel made it emerald, like the 2up’s, and not bright pearly pea green.

Sinestro

Sinestro is Hal’s main bad guy, or at least he used to be. He’s questionable nowadays. He’s been revised a few times over the years because his popularity is connected to Hal’s, which has come and gone depending on the decade. He’s a banished GL, control freak, and general thorn in the GLC’s side. Currently, Sinestro is the patriarch of his own yellow lantern corps.


Sinestro could’ve been a contender. I like his head sculpt and he’s got molded details on his collar, belt, gauntlets, and boots. He even has a unique buck to suit his body type. But, somewhere along the line, that body was shrunk and we were left with Shrimpnestro. On the plus side, Mattel wised up and is using this buck for older teens and Desaad, but it has still put Sinestro on a long road of disappointment. It’s been two years and we’re still no closer to a much needed apology figure. Mattel’s even intentionally making an awful GL Sinestro (no mask, tiny head on the regular buck) that they expect us to buy as part of a very flawed 5-pack. Hopefully, someday, we’ll get a proper Sinestro. I only need it in his yellow SC diggs, but I’m sure many classics fans would like to see his old school costume redone as well.

Sinestro was available in both costumes the first time around, though I’m not sure which was rarer, and both figures look good when not placed next to other figures. Paint was an issue for me on the Sinestro Corps version. You can see in the picture the fuzzy lines and the extra dollop of paint on the shoulder – but I was lucky – mine has a clean tampo for the symbol. Sinestro also included a lantern accessory based on an early design for his corps (later comics would depict it as a regular, albeit yellow, lantern). I like the design here, but again Mattel chose to cast it in a weird pearlized color instead of matching the color the 4H sent in. Continue to Page 2…

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37 comments to DCClassics.Com Retro
Review: Wave 3 – Solomon Grundy

  • TomB68

    This new pages format is really messing with my head.

    Good review for some old figures I hadn’t thought about in awhile. I don’t agree with all your comic book assessments, but some of them were hilarious. 😛

    • TomB68

      Oh, and I’m off to check the feet of wave three. It never even occurred to me that the figures I was having the white dust issues with were from the same wave. Duh.

    • LOL. Our articles are getting longer and longer, so we waned to break ’em in. We’ll keep adding the continues until folks get used to it.

      And, yeah, my comic tastes are eclectic. I should avoid hero comics, but I like their potential…

  • PlayMonkey

    This is still hands down my favorite way. Green Lantern, Sinestro, Nightwing, and Deathstroke? Hells yeah.

  • Adrian

    That Deathstroke is gross. Mattel needs to reissue him for sure. Do you even keep him with your other figures? I’ve got some JLU that have done that and I’m always afraid it’s contagious and I quarantine them. It’s just gross.

    Also, I’m with you on the lanterns. There’s something just not right about them.

  • I got GL and Deathstroke from that wave–and I blame Poe Ghostal for Deathstroke, since he did some pictures that sold me on him–but skipped the rest. (Hell, I just finished Grodd last week!)

  • Lay Ze-Man

    I think the only one that was affected for me was my Hal.
    I’m pretty sure most of my other DCUC3’s are fine.

    Oh, and as you probably already know, slightly disagree about good paint on Grundy.

    Not a fan of the Clockwork Orange black lines on his face.
    Normally I might look for excuses to repaint stuff, but that one was begging for it! 😀

    • Doh. I left the figures in the studio and had to review on memory. It’s okay on figs you’ve had for two years, right?

      But you’re right, I forgot about Grundy’s Tytus lines. Again, depth doesn’t need to be implied.

  • el mariachi

    i only have Deathstroke and Grundy from that wave, but they’re both, thusfar, dust free. and i love both!

  • el mariachi

    oh, and on another note, maybe the pages thing would be easier to negotiate if the buttons were a tad larger… the font size on them is small, so it is a tad easy to glide right past them while reading, even though they’re blue. i missed them until i read that top comment.

  • RageTreb

    Some nitpicks:

    The infamous “pants” joke came from regular old Cartoon Network, not Adult Swim (it aired before Adult Swim was around, even).

    Solomon Grundy does not use the word “am” in such a way. You’re getting him confused with Bizarro.

    • You are, of course correct. Been awhile on those spots. (Evil Sponge!)

      For Grundy, I will simply maintain this is his latest incarnation after being killed by Bizarro in that awful Blackest Night tie-in. He picked up a few things!! 😛

  • Snowglare

    Weird. My OB Deathstroke and Robin have no “dust” issues. They have other QC flaws, like a giant fist and sloppy paint apps, but nothing as glaring as that. My unopened Hal from the same case has grey biceps, so I guess he has a touch of the plague. I can’t find anything elsewhere, including Hal’s legs.

    • Plague is a good word. Are your “clean” ones CLs?

      I may have come across to fanatical, but my entire wave is afflicted. My bad if I did.

      We’ve also considered some environmental factors too. The low grade plastic may be more susceptible to degradation at certain temps or humidities.

      • Snowglare

        No, they’re all from the same case. I can’t see Hal’s foot, but I assume he’s an OB since the others are. Would be funny if my one dirty figure had a CL, though.

  • Mecnia

    Great review!

  • Man, your Deathstroke has the infection bad. The only two figures I have from this wave both have the problem, but my GL is the worst, Deathstroke I’ve only had to clean off once and his seems to have calmed down. So I think Wade is in remission, but not so sure about Hal, he may be replaced soon.

  • Hitchesn

    Great review. This was the wave that got me into the line. It’s a fun line, but I don’t have that many completed C&Cs.

    • I wonder how many collectors out there still have incomplete C&Cs. I tend to get them all at once, but it can be really frustrating to have incomplete ones.

  • orionpax636

    Thank you for going ahead and doing this review. As you discovered in the metallic Hal review (not to be confused with Shallow Hal…damn, I’m sick of Jack Black), I’ve only recently discovered DCUC 3 “dust” syndrome. This review will clue in folks like me that are late to the horrible truth and will realize that their collections need some attention. (And also, to alert parents to get these dust-infected critters away from any children, as my buddy realized.)

    One nitpicky note: Are Nightwing’s “batons” actually eskrima sticks? I’m no DC authority, but as a former practitioner it would be cool if that were true. I know that they seem to be batons because of the grip texture in the middle, but I’m thinking that Dick is an eskrimador (or I’m actually just hoping he is…though some eskrimadors call their sticks batons too).

    • Snowglare

      You are correct, sir. As Wikipedia says, “Dick carried a pair of Escrima truncheons made from an unbreakable polymer.”

      • Good eye! And thanks Snowglare.

        I don’t know if you’re reading any of the Batman comics, but Batman whipped these out in Batman 700 and it was pretty cool. He even made note that he used be using them more often.

  • rob7274

    Great review! Hope they rerelease waves 2 and 3 like there doing with 5. I started late and I just cant bring myself to pay the money wanted. It makes it harder living in the UK. I feel Solomon Grundy is too big but you can’t fault that sculpt.
    I WANT DEATHSTROKE!!!!

  • AllMindsAboutEverything

    This was one of my favorite waves!