Sculpting - ****
Guess what? The sculpt is amazing. Every time they've done the Ledger
Joker, I didn't think they could do better, but here - at least with
the PERS portrait - they've upped the ante again.
The finely stranded hair looks
amazing, the subtle skin textures are excellent, and the wry expression
highlights the gruesome scars.
The laughing portrait doesn't
quite do it for me, but it;s still very recognizable. It's not that
the portrait is off - I'm just not a big fan of the look, especially
with how far the eyes are closed. Still, the teeth are creepy real, and
the portrait is unique enough to give it value with those of us that
have multiple figures.
There's a ton of extra hand
sculpts, all designed to work either with specific accessories, or with
specific poses. They look great, and are in scale.
Paint - ***1/2
Oh my God- a Hot Toys paint score that isn't four stars! Has Michael
had a recent head injury?
It is a bit of a surprise, but
Hot Toys has set the bar so high for themselves, that the occasional
screw up is getting more likely.
If you look at the PERS
portrait, you probably won't find anything to complain about. In fact,
some of the work, like the hair line, is scary real, and they've done
an excellent job giving us paint that looks like make up, and not a
painted action figure. It's beautiful work, no doubt about it.
The second portrait has his eyes
almost completely closed, so that you have the blackened lids. It also
is very sweaty, more so than the PERS face, and for me it's just too
much. I get what they were going for, but they went a little too far
trying to get there.
The PERS head is a bit wet in
appearance as well, but it's much more reserved with this one.
Personally, I like the more matte finish, and the glossy look is my
only negative here.
The hands have a bit more paint
work this time around too. The ungloved versions are dirty, and they
did it well without going overboard.
Articulation - ****
Hot Toys has improved in most categories since the DX01 Joker was
released several years ago. Articulation is one of them - this
underlying TrueType is tremendously fluid and smooth, able to take all
kinds of realistic, life-like poses. All the articulation you
expect is here, and it all works great.
The only spot that's a little
restricted compared to some releases is the neck. The single ball
joint inside the chest works well, but due to the head and neck being
all one sculpt, there isn't any movement around the jawline.
Let's not forget that as a DX,
this figure sports the Parallel Eyeball Rolling System - PERS. This
system allows you to pose the eyes in just about any direction. It's
accomplished by removing the hair in back, and moving a small joystick
inside the head. The engineering here has improved as well, with a
tighter movement and shorter stick.
Accessories - ****
DX figures should always have a lot of extras, supporting the extreme
price they demand. Thankfully, there's a butt load of goodies this time
There's the extra head I already
mentioned in the Sculpt and Paint sections, and providing a second
portrait is a huge bonus in my book. The heads swap easily too,
critical with a costume like this.
He has a good assortment of
weapons too. Some we've seen before, some are brand new.
Gun-wise, let's start with the
Glock 17 that's been converted to full auto in its on screen version.
The magazine is
removable of course, and the slide works - no surprise there. I was
surprised that it actually snaps back in place though, something I
remember from previous releases.
On the larger side, there's the
Smith and Wesson M76. It has the folding stock and spring action, and
is perfectly scaled and sculpted.
The last gun is a new one, the
sawed off Remington 870 that the bank manager used at the beginning of
the film. The Joker took it from him, and it makes several more
appearances in his hands through the film. The pump action works, but
the chamber doesn't open.
The Joker likes knives better
than guns, and he has several here. This isn't the first time we've
gotten the black Extractor knife, but it's always a welcome inclusion.
The blade retracts of course.
The second knife is a pretty
standard butterfly knife, in silver. What makes it special is it works
just like the real deal. Again, scale and sculpt are great, and the
articulated working feature takes it over the top. Funny thing is, I
don't remember him having one in the film...
The third knife-like weapon is a
surprise - it's the potato peeler! This item only got a brief on screen
shot, but it was there, so adding it in is very cool.
While there are only three
knives, that's not the end of the bladed weapons. There are two metal
(yes, real metal) knife blades which can be inserted between the toe
and sole of either shoe. It's a little tricky getting them in place
(you have to get the angle just right) but they look great once you do.
Those are it for the traditional
weapons. But the Joker isn't traditional - there's also a nicely scaled
pencil, which can be used with the included table to recreate the scene
with the various mob bosses. It's a magic trick!
And yes, there's the table.
Silver in color, its primary purpose is to work with the chair, lamp,
and three cardboard walls to recreate the interrogation room. And it
does this extremely well, right down to the small wire attachment
between the lamp and table.
The lamp doesn't light, but it
is articulated so you can pose it however you'd like. It also has a
magnet on the bottom, so it will hold in place on the left side of the
Both the chair and table are
very screen accurate, and in correct scale for the Joker figure. The
paint is good as well, giving them a realistic metallic appearance.
The three cardboard walls
include two faux one way mirrors, again just like on screen. They
aren't actually see through, but that's not an issue for me. The door
behind the Joker, which was true to the film, although it does seem to
be a little to close to center. Of course, that's partly due
to the fact that this room is smaller than the room was in the film.
There are Velcro strips included
that you can use at the corners of the walls to keep them in place.
There's no floor piece, so the Velcro keeps the walls standing.
This version comes with a couple
items we've seen before, but are always important, especially if this
is your only Hot Toys Joker. He has both the playing cards and the wad
of cash, printed up perfectly and properly in scale. Since one of the
hands is specifically designed to hold the cards, they're a critical
Another area where the DX should
shine is with extra hand sculpts, and this one is no exception. With a
total of 14 hands - 8 gloved and 6 without gloves - you'll have plenty
of options for posing and working with the accessories. All of the swap
easily enough, and there's a couple extra wrist pegs just in case.
The standard version also comes
with a light up base, which works well although I doubt many folks will
be using it. It comes in the Joker's purple, but otherwise matches up
with the ones provided with other Batman figures.
That's it for the standard
figure, but that's pretty damn good. I'm checking out the Sideshow
exclusive here, which sold for the same price as the regular but
includes not one but THREE additional accessories.
There's the extra clown mask,
called 'Grumpy'. This was the bank robber who was actually wise to the
Joker's plan of having each robber kill another, but ended up dead by
bus anyway. The mask looks great, and I love the spiky hair.
The exclusive also has the
detonator that the Joker was going to use to blow up the boat. The
detonator is complete with the fake brown book, in which you
can hide it.
All three are cool adds,
especially the detonator. Considering the price was the same for the
regular and the exclusive, it's pretty clear which was the better deal.
Outfit - ****
And here I thought they'd done an amazing job with the previous Joker
outfits. How silly do I feel know!
I talk about tailoring a lot -
that's the key here. All the clothes - shirt, pants, socks, vent,
jacket, coat, tie, shoes - fit perfectly on his slender frame. There's
no weird bulging or odd wrinkling, and nothing about the costume seems
out of scale.
I mentioned with the recent Bane
that his lapels were held in place with two of those annoying
mini-snaps. Not so here - instead they went with very, very tiny
magnets, and the work surprisingly well. The location of the metal
piece on the left lapel is a smidge off, but it's a minor nit to be
The materials choice is
exceptional as well, and by going with such high quality but thin
material, they were able to get all these layers to still look in scale.
I love the soft, fuzzy coat as
well, complete with bright lining. It can be quite tricky to get both
the coat and jacket off and on, due to the tight fit, but it is
possible and I actually did it twice. You should take the advice of the
instructions though, and put the jacket inside the coat first, and then
put both back on the body together.
Even the shoes are another step
forward in realism. While the previous sculpts were great, these soft
leather-like shoes have real stitching and a separate sole, further
improving on the appearance.
I did have some issues keeping
the tie lined up, and the shirt collar is just a whisker too big. But
considering the overall wow factor of this costume, those are truly
minor issues at best.
Fun Factor - ****
While swapping him in and out of the jacket and coat is a bit of a
trick, the rest of the features are easy to use. You'll have a great
time setting him up, and he's easy enough to work with that you'll be
changing poses and expressions on a regular basis.
Value - **
I'm not going to tell you that $275 isn't a lot of money. If you
already own one of the previous Hot Toys Jokers, particularly the first
DX, you'll be hard pressed to convince yourself that you need another
at this price tag.
I think a good comparison DX is
last year's Jack Sparrow, who had lots of extras, a complex outfit, and
even some diorama pieces. That was a figure that ran just north of
$200, depending on the retailer, and got an average value score from me.
Hot Toys figures are more
expensive this year. Even normal releases are often going for $200, a
big jump up. You are getting a TON of extras here, including the second
head sculpt and a very well designed interrogation room. If this guy
$210 - $220, he'd be getting an above average rating here.
But at $275, you're getting into
new territory. He's not a terrible deal, but I did have to drop him a
half star off average. The final straw is that he's not a new
character, but a re-hash of one we've seen multiple times - as nice as
he is, had he been unique I'd have been more likely to go that extra
Things to Watch Out For -
Not much. You do want to be careful with the PERS, since it is possible
to over do it and snap something, but with a little care it should last
a long time.
Overall - ****
The number one question people will have on this figure is simple - is
it worth picking up if I already have the DX01? And the answer is also
simple - yes.
The best reason to pick this guy
up along with the DX01 is because you'll need both figures for a
display. At least. If not more. If you only have this Joker, you'll be
torn - he looks amazing in the jacket and coat, but he didn't wear them
in the interrogation room. With only the 2.0 version, you'd have to
either give up the diorama, or give up the coat - and neither is a good
I also have the DX01, and my
plan is to keep the DX11 in the new outstanding costume, and remove the
jacket and coat from the DX01. He'll look terrific in the diorama (and
you can always do a head swap with the laughing portrait), and I'll
still have the ultimate fully dressed version as well.
Packaging - ****
Sculpting - ****
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - ****
Accessories - ****
Outfit - ****
Fun Factor - ****
Value - **
Overall - ****
Where to Buy -
Online options include these site sponsors:
- Sideshow had this exclusive,
but you'll need to get on he wait list. They also have the regular
edition for $275.
Ego Comics is at $253.
- Big Bad Toy Store is at $275.
- or you can search
ebay for a deal.
Other Hot Toys Jokers include the Cop version of the DX01
Joker, as well as the regular
DX01 look. Hot Toys also did a Bank Robber version, as
well as an original non-DX
version. Mattel took a shot
at it too, with less than stellar results. Making it smaller didn't help. Hot Toys
did a nice mini-bust as well.
And if you're looking for
something a little bigger, Enterbay did a terrific quarter scale
version of this Joker.
What would the Joker be without
the Bat? Hot Toys did a new
DX version of him as well.
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