Sculpting - Manhattan,
Nite Owl ***1/2; Silk Spectre, Comedian ***
I don't know if it's because I've seen the movie now, or just because
these are better figures, but I certainly like this wave overall much
more than the first series.
sculpting on Dr. Manhattan is not exactly complex, but they did do a
wonderful job adding in muscle and vein detail to give him more visual
pop. Without providing that extra level of detail, this guy could have
just ended up looking like a reject from the last round of Blue Man
Group try outs.
Instead, he's one of my favorites of the group,
especially when you pop on the extra set of 'floating' legs. The
proportions, while comic booky, are very well done and quite
appropriate to the character.
If you're looking for more detail,
there's the Comedian. They really went the extra mile on the complex
suit, right down to the buckles and rivets. This older, scarred face
included the permanently attached cigar as well. He doesn't score quite
as high for me because the actual portrait likeness is off, especially
with the hair, but I can deny how cool the overall effect of the outfit
The portrait on the old school Silk Spectre is much better,
and she's one of the prettiest sculpts we've seen in awhile. Actually,
when it comes to female figures, 2009 has been a pretty decent year so
Although she's sculpted to hold really only one particular
pose, that pose is at least interesting and dynamic. The stockings are
actual material, not simply sculpted stockings. That does mean that the
strands are a little larger than they should be for this scale, but in
person the realism makes up for the minor scale issues.
end up scoring a little lower though, because of her wonky left
forearm. It's oddly shaped, tall and skinny in a weird sort of way.
It's obvious enough to be distracting, even in person.
leaves Nite Owl, who is the surprise for me. I love this sculpt!
There's something very cool about the retro 40's look, and the small
details like the raised stitching on the shirt really adds to his basic
appearance. Yea, it's a goofy looking costume, but this guy pulls it
These figures are actually pretty well scaled to the
previous wave, an issue that has occasionally plagued DCD. Folks who
should be shorter - like Rorschach and Spectre - are, while others are
appropriately tall. The series is supposedly scaled around 7", with the
figure heights varying to fit in, but most of the taller figures are
closer to 6 3/4". I suppose Manhattan could be a smidge taller, but
it's a very minor nit.
Paint - ***1/2
With the first series of figures, I had a number of minor paint issues
that pulled the score down a bit. I'm happy to say that with these
four, none of those issues existed, and the paint work is much cleaner
and well done across the set.
still a minor glitch here, a bad cut line there, but the overall
quality of the paint operations is top notch. I hope that the work is
consistent as well, and that you'll find the same results with your set.
course, with some of these figures that's more impressive than with
others. Manhattan, for example, is not exactly a tough figure to get
right. The basic blue is consistent and clean, and it's really only the
undies (done correctly this time, not like the goofy version the 13"
figure is wearing), his eyes, and his symbol. Also unlike the 13"
version, the symbol on his forehead is about the right size.
the opposite end of the "man, this is a bitch to paint" scale is the
Comedian.He has plenty of silver and black, always tough colors to do
cleanly, and yet it's only on very close inspection that you'll find
problems. The smiley face button on his chest is perfect, and even the
cut line around his mask (and the corresponding eyes) is extremely
clean for this scale.
Nite Owl is probably my favorite
category, because of that same retro kitchy look I talked about in the
Sculpt section. The bright, well defined colors look great, and I'm
surprised by how well done the smaller yellow areas are.
figure that probably won't get the recognition she deserves in this
category is Silk Spectre. She actually has a few more sloppy spots than
the other three, but again, these aren't easy to see with the nekkid
eye. BTW, the small mark on the left cheek was my fault...
The issue that sets her apart is
how they managed to
translate the gauzy, translucent quality of the thin 'nighty' she wears
over the corset and garter. It's hard to tell exactly how they managed
to do this. It looks like some of the black might actually be showing
through the yellow...or that perhaps the nighty was painted black in
the proper spots before the yellow top coat, to make it appear like
it's showing through. Or perhaps it's just a really well done wash, put
on top of the yellow itself. Like I said, it's tough to tell just how
they did it without damaging the figure, and I'm not damaging mine.
Suffice to say, it's a small detail that took some serious thought and
careful execution, and they pulled it off.
Articulation - **1/2
If you're looking for a super articulated series, look someplace else.
This is DC Direct we're talking about here.
these have enough points to make it possible to capture one or two
decent poses, which is probably all that most collectors will end up
All four figures have a ball
jointed neck, and you
know how big I am on this particular joint. It's critical to make a
pose look realistic and not toy-ish, and the neck on all four works
pretty well in this regard. A couple are a bit more restricted by the
sculpts than the others, but it's a minor nit.
The Comedian and Dr.
ball jointed shoulders (the pin/post kind you'd expect) jointed only at
the torso. The Comedians shoulder armor allows the arms to move up and
down as well, although it did look like the soft rubber connectors
holding them in place could break over time.
Poor Silk Spectre only gets cut
shoulders, probably to
keep those arms looking lovely. Of course, with the wonky left forearm,
I think that's a bit of a moot point.
Nite Owl, Silk Spectre and the
Comedian have cut wrists, but Manhattan (who could really use them)
This is DC Direct, so there's no
cut waists, and everyone has V style hips, pin knees, and pin ankles.
The extra set of legs that comes
with Dr. Manhattan are not articulated.
The best poses are going to come
from Manhattan and the Comedian, but even there, they are limited to
one or two cool looks.
Accessories - Manhattan ***;
Comedian **1/2; Nite Owl, Silk Spectre *1/2
Here's a category that this line is really not meant for.
four figures come with the little girder stands (seen in my previous
review), as well as the foot pegs and connectors. They're decent
enough, but unlike Rorschach, none of these figures need it to stand.
In fact, if you don't mind Rorschach having a dopey foot pose, even he
can get away without it.
Surprisingly, the classic Silk
doesn't need her stand either to stay upright, and even better, no
dopey foot pose is necessary.
That's the only accessory for
her and for the classic Nite Owl. And no, at $17 or so a pop, that's
Comedian does a bit better, coming with his trademark pistols, given to
him in commemoration of his service. They have the small smiley faces
on both sides of the grips, and are very good sculpts. They fit
perfectly in his hands or his holsters.
Dr. Manhattan also has
two accessories, and it's not the quantity but the quality that gets
him the extra boost in score. He comes with a second set of legs, posed
in a hovering or floating stance, along with a small clear display
stand that looks like turbulence below his feet. The legs
easily, the stand fits perfectly, and it keeps him standing in a
classic pose. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the review, and
you'll see a large photo of him in this pose.
Fun Factor - **
Yea, these aren't exactly toys for kids, although you can buy them off
the pegs at Toys R Us. Hmmm - I don't think they've ever carried a
figure of a character quite as vile as the Comedian.
these aren't really intended for kids, I won't be dinging them much on
my overall for the low Fun Factor, but your mileage may vary.
Value - Dr. Manhattan
**1/2; Comedian **; Silk Spectre, Nite Owl *1/2
Pick these guys up for $15 or under (which is possible at some places),
and you can add another half star to these figures in this category,
bringing them up to a more average value place.
pay the $17 - $18 a piece that some places are charging (and that seems
to be the norm), and you'll feel the pain, especially with characters
like classic Spectre and Owl. With nothing more than the base, you
might begin to wonder if you can justify spending that much (or more)
on many figures.
Things To Watch Out For
Not a thing. The little trigger fingers on the Comedian were
surprisingly sturdy, and the leg swap on Manhattan works flawlessly.
Overall - Dr. Manhattan
***1/2; Comedian, Nite Owl, Silk Spectre ***
As I said earlier, overall I like this wave quite a bit better than the
first. And as a complete set, they make a terrific display. I'm a fan
of the movie, so I'm glad I picked them up, but you can't ignore the
fairly high price tag, and the fact that to own all dozen it's going to
cost you over $200.
they line ends here, as I suspect it will, I'm happy with it. The set
makes for a fairly complete set, and there isn't any other character I
just have to have. Oh, there's a few I'd like to have, but that's why
I'm a geek. Top of my list would be another series of eight figures,
all of the main characters, but this time from the comic book, and done
with as much care and quality as these are. That would be Watchmen
Packaging - Manhattan ***; the rest ***1/2
Sculpting - Manhattan, Nite Owl ***1/2; Silk Spectre, Comedian
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - **1/2
Accessories - Manhattan ***; Comedian **1/2; Nite
Owl, Silk Spectre *1/2
Fun Factor - **
Value - Dr. Manhattan **1/2; Comedian **; Silk Spectre, Nite
Overall - Dr. Manhattan ***1/2; Comedian, Nite Owl, Silk
Where to Buy -
You have a number of online options if your LCS is lacking or
has the set for $55, or the singles for $17.
Earth has the set of 4 for $60 (just $15 each), or the
singles for $18.
Comics and Stuff has the set for $63, and the variants at
- Circle Red has
the set for $63 as well.
- Urban Collector
has them for $17 each.
- Things From Another World
has them at $20.69 each.
- or you can search
ebay for a deal.
I've covered series 1 in two reviews, one of Ozymandias and modern Silk Spectre,
and the other of Rorscach
and modern Nite Owl. I also checked out one of the 13" deluxe
figures, Dr. Manhattan.
Want to chat about this review? Try out one of these terrific forums where I'll be
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