Batman (Caped Crusader)
For a long time, I’ve avoided buying Batman figures. Most are done in either an animated style or in a scale other than 3 3/4″. I don’t have anything against other scales, just really wanted a Dark Knight that could stand among GI Joe, Hellboy, and Marvel movie figures and not look out of place.
I recently saw the new Dark Knight Rises figures in that scale hanging on the pegs, and well the detailing didn’t look too bad. So I picked one up.
I don’t normally talk about packaging, but this is really a bit small and plain. The back is entirely black and white and mostly taken up with legal notices. This figure was $5.88 at WalMart, so I was will to see that as a cost cutting measure. Something I did find odd, though. The DC logos on the card are the older swirly ones. Maybe I’ve been hanging with Mrs. Nerd too long, but if you are going to make a big deal out of changing your logo, shouldn’t you apply it everywhere?
There were a few Skittle colored variation of this figure on the pegs, along with a Bane. I, of course, went with the traditional black film version. The silver one reminded me of costume from the end of Batman and Robin, BTW.
For the most part, I have to say the detail work on this figure is pretty decent. If anything there is too much of it. The pictures I’ve been able to find online make the Batsuit appear to be a tad sleeker than what this figure shows. There are places where the figure shows a bit more fabric undersuit texture than what I think the actual costume has.
The head is good. There of course isn’t enough skin showing to make any sort of call as to the actor likeness. If anything the ears might be a tad too tall, but that might just be the angles I’ve seen them from in pictures. The eyes do a good job of portraying the look of the cowl with the black make up around them.
While I think the details are all there, I think the chest armor may have some things out of place. For example, the ab armor seems to have the correct pieces, but is spread too far apart. The pectoral armor pieces in pictures appear to be larger than what is on the figure and also higher on the chest. The film version doesn’t seem to have as much space between the neck and top of the armor pieces.
The arms are okay. Again the details are all there, but maybe just not quite right. The forearm blades are close to the right shape. However I’m guessing they were softened up to meet safety regulations.
One area I’m just not sure about on the arms is the shoulder pads. They really look too big to me. Well maybe not too big, but sticking out too far. They look like they were sculpted separate and glued on to the piece after it was finished. On the figure, they are actually separate rubber pieces.
The belt looks like it should except for the maybe the buckle. The detail is soft and there should be a bit of black in the middle of it. It appears to be a separate piece molded in gold tone.
The cape here is cloth and is more like a standard super hero cape than one you can wrap around him. It’s triangular with a bat like shape cut at the bottom. Although it’s permanently attached, it does a nice job of fanning out behind him.
The back is detailed with body armor, but there is something odd hidden back the cape. There is an extremely deep section in the middle of his back. I suspect this is sculpted this way for an accessory or alternate version of the figure. Here, it just looks strange.
Speaking of accessories, there are two. The first of which is a really oversize batarang that is probably in scale for a 6″ figure. It’s the standard bat symbol shape for this series of films molded in bronzey gold. Yawn.
The second is a tad more interesting. It is a grapple hook gun. This looks like about real world size for this kind of item. There’s some silver paint here for the hook, as well. The downside? It’s one piece. The hook doesn’t come out or attach to a string.
Remember those big shoulder pads I mentioned above? When I saw the figure in the blister, I figured they were covering the shoulder joint similar to how most of Iron Man figures worked. I was wrong. This is a standard swivel joint, there is no ball jointed shoulder here. As a matter of fact, there are only 7 total points of articulation.
For the most part, Bats shares the same articulation model as a vintage Star Wars action figure. Neck, shoulders, hips. The only additions are knee joints. These are single pivot joints and not double hinged knees.
There are no wrists, ankles or elbows. There’s not even a waist hidden behind the belt. The belt does hinder the hips a bit from coming to a full seated position, though. Essentially, this articulation model will allow you pose him in a menacing straight stance to look mean or foot up on a barrel Captain Morgan stance. Of course, that is a half Morgan since he has no elbows.
The other obvious miss for me is the ball joint for the head. This has become pretty standard for figures of this scale and really limits the expression you can get from the figure. I can’t see why this would be any sort of cost savings, but what do I know.
I was a bit excited that this might be the Batman line I’d want to get. It isn’t. I do have a Batman that I can display with some of my other lines. I just can’t put him in any dramatic pose. I guess this is the trade off for a $6 figure.
People who look at this figure on my shelf will say, “Oh it’s Batman.” However, for me, there’s enough little stuff that is off by just a bit, that it adds up to a miss for me.
Engineernerd Score: 80/100