Keep in mind though that this is
NOT the same Batman being imported by
DC Direct. Hot Toys is doing two versions: this one is from the
beginning of the movie, when he still is wearing the old suit,
previously seen in Batman Begins, and the DCD import version will be
his later, newly designed suit.
Like all Hot Toys product, these
aren't cheap, and you can expect to pay around $160 - $175 each,
depending on the retailer. Also, most retailers are charging
more for the Joker than for Bats, and if you do want them, I'd order
Special note: My rule for photos
in reviews is that they should be real - no photoshop lighting, no post
editing, no artsy stuff, since that's not what you'll get when you take
the figure out. I did cheat on two of these photos though, so
I wanted to point that out. There are two photos in which the Joker has
bare, non-gloved hands. He does NOT come with these hands,
and I pulled them off another Hot Toys type 1 body. Since they are jail
photos, and since he didn't have the gloves on there, I cheated and
swapped them out. Forgive me.
Packaging - ***1/2
The graphics and art work on the
package really match well with the dark, ominous feel of the film.
There's even a rough texture on the outer box sleeve that
literally gives it a gritty feel.
Inside, there's two plastic
tray covers...and yet they felt the need to add twisties.
the Joker. I hate twisties, and for figures like this who are
already so well held in place, they are merely an annoyance.
Sculpting - Batman
****; Joker ***1/2
Hot Toys has stepped beyond the realism that most other sixth scale
producers are currently putting out there, so it's tough to judge them
head to head. They really are a class by themselves.
I look at the photo of Batman to the left, it looks to me like a guy in
a mask. Better than that, it looks like Christian Bale/Bruce
Wayne in the mask. The dimpling and texturing that Hot Toys does with
the skin is amazing, but there's also a very realistic texture to the
cowl. Batman is a thing of beauty.
He also has a perfectly
proportioned head. It's not too big, it's not too small - it looks just
like it should. The hands (particularly the fists) aren't
as perfect when it comes to scale, but they are pretty damn close.
though his suit is a soft rubber, the sculpt isn't as soft as you'd
expect. I'll get into that further in the Outfit section.
Joker head sculpt is extremely nice, particularly when it comes to the
realism. Some folks will say that the wrinkles are actually TOO deep
and defined, but that tends to happen when you cake on make up like
I do have some issues with the
scars though, which don't
have the same amount of keloid damage that I remember from the film.
There are scars, but they aren't nearly as severe as they
I also don't think this is a
perfect Heath Ledger as Joker.
In fact, stripped of paint, I think the face sculpt on the DC
Direct 13" version is superior if you're looking for Ledger in there.
the DC Direct version does not have the same excellent hair sculpt that
we have here. That's the other key highlight that will make this figure
stand above the DC Direct and Medicom versions. The flowing wavy hair
looks amazing, particularly in person.
The Joker's hands are a bit
better proportioned than Batman's, and the various sculpts work well
with the accessories.
also want to discuss the Bale sculpt here, although since it's a second
head it will be brought up to some degree in the Accessories section as
It is a much, much better Bale
than the older Takara
version, and even that one was decent. Comparing the head
to the left with a still
from the film,
you can see that they really captured the look of the hair, eyes and
eyebrows, lips, and even the shape of the jaw for the most part.
The nose is off a smidge, and the 'bump' on the upper right
of his nose is mysteriously missing, but otherwise it's extremely close.
much as I like the textured skin though, they might have done just a
little too much with Bale. Now, I'm not complaining, as it
much more realistic like this than smooth, but in a perfect world they
would have backed off just a skoosh.
Paint - ***1/2
Great sculpts need great paint to really shine, and fortunately, both
these figures have that. It's not quite four star paint, but it's
skin tone is excellent, as is the lips and eyes. The eyes
be a little more even, but it's hard to tell with the deeply set
sockets in the mask.
They didn't do as much with
this time, although the gauntlets of his suit are slightly more glossy
than the rest of the outfit.
My biggest issue on Bats may not
even exist on yours. On mine, it appears as though someone
some glossy black - or maybe just the clear gloss from the eyes or lips
- on the bottom of the cowl in two places. These are visible in several
of the photos, and look like glossy splotches on the otherwise matte
finish. Hopefully the person hand painting the face just had a
momentary mistake, and this won't be an issue across the series.
Joker's paint work compliments the sculpt as well. The make up on his
face is slightly off white, not blindingly bright white, which gives it
a more realistic appearance. The skin shows through at the
wrinkles, and the red smile/lips have that "applied by a psycho'" look,
just like in the film.
The hair is green, but like in
it's not some sort of bright over powering frog green, but rather the
more subtle look of someone that's simply colored their hair badly too
many times in a row. It's still a little more green that the
screen character, and I've seen some nice repaints where it's been
toned down just a bit.
There's something about the eyes
doesn't quite work for me though. I don't know if it just
too raccoon, or if the size of the black circles is just too consistent
from eye to eye, but it looks less like hand applied make up and more
like paint to me. Still, these are only quibbles, and the
work on this Joker is far superior to the DC Direct version.
Articulation - ****
The Hot Toys bodies can't be beat right now. It will be
interesting to see if Sideshow's new Prometheus can top them.
only is there all the articulation you expect in a high end sixth scale
body, but it flows and hangs in a very, very natural way.
is on the more heroic body, but the Joker is on their type 1 body, and
I just happen to have a nekkid one laying around right now, so
I've included a photo. You can plainly see the huge number of
joints, and many have very unique designs. Check out the
shoulders and ankles in particular, where the very ugly nekkid joints
actually work extremely well with clothes on.
Batman's costume is fairly restrictive - as he points out to Fox at the
beginning of the Dark Knight - you can still get plenty of excellent
poses out of him with this base body. And I don't think it's possible
to get a bad pose out of the Joker.
Accessories - Batman
***1/2; Joker ***
When it comes to accessories, I can always use more. But with
Bats, that's almost a non-issue.
it's not like we haven't seen several of his accessories before,
including his grappling gun. It fits well in both his
gun hand and on the back of his belt.
There's also a pair of
batarangs, both the same medium size. These fit on his belt
clip on the left side. It isn't a tight fight though, and the
other sculpted items on his belt tend to push them outward, making it
tough to keep them in place.
He has one of his small grenades
too, which seems scaled just about right. He also has his mangler
thingamajig, just like the DCD version did, which is designed
as a complete gauntlet in this version. Swap it with the
regular gauntlet, and it's even articulated with a pin joint at the
proper place. BTW, Wookster tells me I have it on the wrong arm...
has four additional hands as well. You'd think at first that
he has two sets, but that's not the case. There's one
open gesturing left hand, but the other three are all right hands - an
open gesture, a gun grip, and a batarang grip. These are all
sculpted and painted nicely, especially the gripping hands. Both work
perfectly for what they are designed to do, which is surprising,
because often the hands designed to grip small items (like the
batarangs) do not work well.
The final extra with Batman is
second Bale head. I've already discussed the sculpt and paint
this in the previous sections, but it's worth noting here that swapping
the heads works very smoothly, and I'm a huge fan of having an extra
head like this as an accessory. It's particularly nice with this
character, because you can easily bash your own Bruce Wayne figure.
Pick up one of the Hot Toys bodies off ebay, slap on a nice
looking sixth scale suit, and voila, you have a Bruce!
the Joker isn't as well equipped by a long shot. He comes
one extra set of posed hands, a switchblade (and the blade actually
retracts!), a set of playing cards, and a pack of money.
a plastic band around the center of both the money and the cards.
I'd suggest leaving them in place, unless you like chasing
down and trying to pick up small pieces of paper off the floor. Both
the money and cards look very realistic, but it was a bit of a
disappointment to see that the money is only printed on one side.
I mentioned, the switchblade retracts into the handle, although it
doesn't actually pop out like the real thing. Still, it could
opened with one hand, always a plus for a man like the Joker.
hands, like Batman's, work very well with his accessories.
hands can be very hard to swap however, and I managed to snap a pin
inside the arm. The Joker, who is on that slimmer type 1
did not have this same problem. His hands popped on and off
easily enough, but stayed in place through all the posing without any
Both figures also have display
stands, with the logo emblazoned on the base. Personally,
using a display base with figures that look this good, this realistic,
and stand this well on their own should be a crime, but if you need
them they're available.
Outfit - ****
Wow. If you thought Hot Toys had done a nice job before, you
have to see these two.
those of you that read my review a couple years ago comparing the
Medicom, Hot Toys and Takara Batman Begins figures, you'll recall that
while the Takara and HT versions ended up with the same final overall
score, it was only because of a couple minor issues I had with the
Takara version. In the end, on my display shelf, I have much
preferred the Takara figure.
Why? Largely because
much more realistic appearing rubber uniform. It allowed for
better posability, and looks less clunky and oversized.
Hot Toys agreed, because they took all the best attributes of the older
Takara costume and improved on them. The soft rubber suit has
great sculpted detail, moves with the appendages, allows for deep
stances and holding the hands over the head, and looks damn good doing
One of the keys here is the
boots. The HT ankles have a
ton of potential for movement, and they designed the boots to be soft
enough to allow your the ankles to work beautifully. You'll
able to find some very natural fighting stances that look extremely
The HT neck is actually ball
jointed at both the head
and the torso, but with the cowl on neither will matter. The
can barely tilt due to the design, but that's Lucius Fox's issue, not
Hot Toys. When you swap to the Bale head, you get all the
range of movement back.
The two other key components are
and the belt. The belt looks fantastic, and rides nice and
his hips. The sculpting and paint work are top notch, and
plenty of little Bat-goodies sculpted around it to make it visually
interesting, including the bat-remote.
The cape is a huge
improvement over the thin Takara version, although I do still
have one issue with it. The outer material is a thin crushed
velvet, while the inner lining has a soft nylon or silk feel.
inner lining on mine is too long for about half the length of the
bottom of the cape though. What that means is that if you
the cape up, the inner lining droops below the outer lining, looking
weird. It's not like this all the way across, so it looks
You can't wrap the cape entirely
around his body due to the way it's attached at the shoulders, but
that's a minor issue for me.
Joker outfit is even more outstanding. Everything from the terrific
shoe sculpt, to the perfect print pattern on the shirt looks amazing.
I do have one issue, but it's relatively minor as well.
don't think the clothing could possible fit him better. Even
four layers on his torso - shirt, vest, jacket, coat - he still looks
realistic and nothing at all like a stuffed sausage. The
is extremely thin materials of course, but even then the quality is
very, very high. For example, the interior of the coat has a
beautiful thin red nylon lining. You'll never see it unless
remove the coat, but they went the extra mile to add it anyway. And
wait til you see those socks!
the Joker has no pocket watch, he does have his watch chain.
While this one is a little too large to be perfectly in
is made from a very sturdy, solid metal, and looks great on his hip.
one issue with the entire outfit is the use of very thing Velcro to
hold the vest together. They actually use this Velcro in
places, including the wrists, but it just doesn't hold well enough on
the vest. It was always coming open, and even when I closed it, the
Velcro was too obvious.
But I have to say that's an
minor grip, especially compared against how much is right with these
many layers of clothing. Like much of the work they've done with the
Pirates of the Caribbean line, their Batman line is shaping up to have
some amazing costuming.
Fun Factor - **
Neither of these figures would hold up to any sort of serious play, and
I wouldn't recommend them for it. But for kids of all ages that are
looking for something cool to stick on the shelf that retains the
genetic code of its toy ancestors, these are perfect.
I paid around $135 each ordering early (and got hit with plenty of
charges), but you can now pick up the DCD imports for around $140 -
$150 with some careful shopping. Right now the market has
of figures that are much lower in quality and yet run upwards of $100,
and Medicom's pair will cost you an arm and a leg. I almost
dropped them a half star here, but the quality of the costumes,
accessories, and sculpt are just so high that I honestly felt you were
getting what you were paying for.
Things To Watch Out For
About ten seconds out of the box, Batman's right wrist peg snapped.
This is the peg that is inside the hard plastic forearm.
I've had this happen three times now with Hot Toys figures,
the pegs are just too small on these bodies, especially the superhero
versions. If the hands seem to be coming off too hard, soften
them up with some hot water.
Thankfully, Hot Toys was quick
to respond to my queries and are replacing the peg.
Overall - Batman ****;
Move over Takara Bats, this Hot Toys version is now my favorite.
Yea, the rubber suit bends oddly at the elbows and shoulders
some poses, and there's still a few minor issues overall, but I like
this new version so much that shortly after opening it up,
I ordered the second suit version. I didn't think I
another Hot Toys Batman...but I was clearly oh so wrong.
If you can have only one sixth
scale Batman, buy this one. He
IS the man, at least until Hot Toys releases their new suit version.
If you're a bigger fan of the new suit, then I'd suggest
the DC Direct import right now. Hey, I did it. And I wouldn't
surprised if I saw my original Hot Toys version, my Medicom version AND
my Takara version up on ebay in the coming weeks.
you can only have one Joker, this is the one to have.
Yes, I do still like the DCD version, but compared side by
the reality of this one simply blows it away. The difference of course
is the price, since you can get the DCD version for just a hair over
half the price of this one. The paint work is not as good on
DCD version, and the sculpted hair is poorer, but the face sculpt
underneath all that is actually the better Ledger. It's a
they didn't quite nail the Ledger appearance, but it's still a
fantastic looking figure.
nice thing about Hot Toys having this license is that they might give
it as much love as their Alien or Pirates of the Caribbean lines.
If we can get a Two Face (with Harvey Dent extra head) I'll
happy. Give me a Gordon to go with them and I'll crap my
Packaging - ***
Sculpting - Batman ****; Joker ***1/2
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - ****
Outfit - ****
Accessories - Batman ***1/2; Joker ***
Fun Factor - **
Value - **1/2
Overall - Batman ****; Joker ***1/2
Where to Buy -
There's a number of online sponsors carrying these now, and these are
all pre-orders for shipment in the fall:
has an excellent price on both at just $150 each. They also
the Bank Robber Joker up for pre-order at that price as well.
has the Joker for $150 and the Batman for $150 as well. They
also have the
Bank Robber Joker pre-order at just $150.
- Urban Collector
matches them with the Joker and Batman for just $150 each, and
they have pre-orders up for the Bank Robber Joker at just $150 as well.
- Alter Ego Comics
has the Joker at $157.50, as well as Batman.
Earth has both at $175.
- You can also use the
to search ebay.
- for the British readers, Forbidden
Planet has them on pre-order for 110 GBP.
Related Links -
Obviously, the most
directly related reviews center around The Dark Knight:
- there's the 13" Deluxe
versions of Batman and Joker
- in a smaller scale, there's
the Movie Masters versions of Batman
- Mattel's version of the 12" Dark Knight.
Cheaper, but there's a reason.
- there is also the slightly larger Action
Cape version from Mattel - even cheaper!- in the small scale
action figures, I looked at a couple of the regular figures.
- and for comparison sake, check out the Batman Begins figure
that DCD did in this line.
- and if you're wondering about
the previous Medicom, Hot Toys and Takara 12" Batman Begins figures,
check out my comparison
Want to chat about this review? Try out one of these terrific forums where I'll be
And be sure to page all the way
to the end - I love that last photo!