Packaging - ***
The DCUC packaging isn't as attractive or eye
catching as the MOTUC packaging, also from Mattel and also aimed toward
collectors, but it does tend to show off the figure a bit better, with
less clutter on the bubble.
Mattel has remained consistent with the
style of packaging through out all 9 (and now 10) waves. I have no
with that, as it makes for more consistent looking MOC display, but
even the best designs do tend to get a bit long in the tooth after a
Sculpting - Green Arrow
****; Mantis ***1/2; Black Canary **1/2
One of the features of DCUC is the reuse of many of the basic body
parts. It's not as over the top as the MOTUC line, but the basic body
parts show up over and over.
true again here with Mantis, but he has such unique additional features
- attached 'cape', funky boots and gloves, and Electro style mask -
that he stands out against the group quite distinctly. This version is
a more modern comic book look and I like it quite a bit, but the cape
does tend to get in the way of doing too many different poses. It's not
that the cape is stiff, and in fact it's quite soft and does allow the
arms and legs to still move freely. But when the arms and legs are
brought in toward the body, the cape tends to pooch out in funny ways
Black Canary is very pretty,
something that's always a
given with a female comic book character...and almost never true with
the plastic incarnation. The Four Horsemen did a nice job with the
features and hair, giving her a tough but pretty countenance.
of the body sculpt is great as well, especially the torso (no uni-boob
here!) and legs. Unfortunately, there ends up being two major issues
that pull down this score for me, both dealing with her appendages.
there's the itty bitty hands. It's almost like the annoying Burger King
commercials with the guy who doesn't want the Whopper to make his hands
look even smaller than they already do. The fact that they are sculpted
in fists doesn't help, and neither does the thin forearms.
too skinny are the ankles and calves below the boot tops. Above the
boot top is a healthy, sexy calf. Below it is a tiny, skinny odd
looking little leg. Taking her out of the package, it was the very
first thing I noticed, and that shouldn't be the case.
real stockings on, something that looks great...from the front. Any man
knows that one of the best features of real fishnet stockings is the
sexy line that runs up the back, but in this scale, that line turns
into a four lane highway of clumped material, and ruins the rear view.
I found that she had a bit of
trouble standing on her own, but once I found the sweet spot, she
remained happy and upright.
Arrow is one of the very nicest figures in the entire series, all 9
waves, released so far. There's a very classic comic book look to both
the costume and head sculpt, and the detailing is excellent. The sculpt
and articulation work fantastic together, and he stands great on his
own in any pose. The sculpted hands work with the bow and arrow far
better than I
expected, and the stern expression matches up with just about any pose.
I'm sure a some of this love is
generated by all the
new pieces, like the newly sculpted torso and arms, to go with the
usual head and hands, but even with a new sculpt, problems could exist.
The Four Horsemen didn't just give us new pieces with this figure, they
gave us great new pieces.
do wish that his mold lines, especially on the arms, where a tad less
obvious, but that's a very minor nit - so minor that it doesn't keep
him from a perfect score in this category.
Paint - GA, Canary ***1/2; Mantis
Paint ops are solid across these three, nothing spectacular but no
major issues either.
is some slight variation in the greens on the costumes of Mantis and
GA, especially between body parts, but it's barely perceptible in
person. It's there, but you have to be looking for it. It is aggravated
by bright lighting though, so in some photos it's more recognizable.
did deduct a bit from Mantis for a smudged nose. It looks like he was
handled or packaged too quickly after the paint was applied, allowing
the nose to get damaged.
Articulation - GA ***1/2; Mantis
***; Canary **1/2
While most of the figures in the series have similar articulation due
to the heavy body part re-use, these three have various factors
(including the newly sculpted parts mentioned earlier) that create a
slightly different situation.
three figures still have ball jointed necks, but none work as well as
past releases. Canary's hair is the obvious culprit in her case, and
she can barely turn from side to side, let alone tilt.
In both GA
and Mantis' case, the obstruction is not so obvious, but the result is
almost the same. The heads can turn side to side, but tilting in any
direction is pretty much ruled out. That's a pity, since a good ball
jointed neck is the single most important joint for realistic poses.
three have the same disk/pin ball joints with bicep swivels, and these
all work great. Unfortunately, Canary's jacket sculpt won't allow her
upper arms to come in close to the body, and she ends up looking like a
body builder who can no longer touch his thighs.
and cut waist joints on all three work as you would expect, and both
Canary and Mantis have the usual cut wrist joints, although in Canary's
case the cut is at the end of her sleeve.
Green Arrow out does
them both, and past releases at this point. He has pin/post wrist
joints (a post into the forearm, with a pin through the disc) that
allows the wrist to turn AND move forward and back. This makes posing
him with the bow much, much easier.
Below the waist, both Mantis
and GA have the trademark highly articulated hips that have been a
trademark of this series, as well as the usual pin knees, pin ankles
and cut thighs. These all work great, and allow for both deep
action stances and natural relaxed poses.
Black Canary got a bit
stiffed in this department. She has more traditional T style hips, with
a much more restricted range of movement. I suspect this was done for
the stockings to stay in place, but it's still a problem, since she
can't take any good fighting stances.
She does have the cut
thighs, pin knees and pin ankles, but the inferior hips make them all
less useful. In fact, I've heard lots of folks complain that she has
trouble just standing, but I didn't have that issue.
You can also
turn her feet at the top of the boots, but I'm not sure I recommend it.
The movement can cause issues with the stockings, and may end up
Accessories - GA ***; Canary,
Black Canary and Mantis only come with their respective BAF parts
(torso and left arm) for Chemo. If you're looking to build him, you'll
probably be satisfied, but if not...it's going to seem like you got
stiffed. Thankfully, I'm looking forward to building Chemo.
Arrow also has a sort of, kind of part for Chemo - the blue display
stand. That's what the package implies, and based on past waves where
one figure had a stand, it was intended for the BAF. But this stand is
so tiny, that it's highly unlikely you'll ever use it with Chemo.
better accessories are his assortment of arrows, along with his bow.
You can remove his large quiver as well and it's not an integral part
of his outfit, so technically that's an accessory too I suppose.
arrows look great, each with a different head. One is a boxing glove,
another an explosive, etc. There are four extra arrows, and
only downside (other than the soft plastic) is that they can't fit
anywhere on his body or quiver.
He also has his bow, and as I
mentioned in the sculpt section, his hands are designed to hold it
perfectly in a number of poses. However, one arrow is permanently
strung on the bow, making it impossible for him to either pull back the
string or look right in a relaxed pose. It is very easy to cut the
arrow free, but I would have preferred to not have the arrow attached
Fun Factor - ****
I've commented on this in every DCUC and MOTUC review, so I'll say it
again - the best toys Mattel is producing right now are in their
'collector' aimed series. While most kids will have no idea who Mantis
or Black Canary is, Green Arrow should be recognizable to them, thanks
in part to the new Batman: Brave and the Bold cartoon. He's a great
action figure too, with a ton of play value.
Value - **1/2
Some retailers are raising prices on these, but I picked them up for
the usual $12. Pay more than that and you can knock another half star
off here, and if you aren't interested in Chemo, you can already deduct
that for both Black Canary and Mantis, who have no additional
Things to Watch Out For -
I didn't have any joint problems, and there were no weak pins or
'thing to watch out for' this time around is seeing these on the shelf
and thinking you'll find them again later. If you want to pick them up,
buy the first ones you see, and consider yourself lucky.
also worth noting that there are two distinct versions of Chemo, at
least in terms of his torso. One has lots and lots of bubbles, the
other just a few. You might find yourself partial to one over the other.
Overall - Green Arrow
****; Mantis ***; Black Canary **1/2
I almost dropped Green Arrow a half star overall. It's the silly bow -
with the arrow glued in place in such an odd way, it interferes with
his true potential.
after posing him for awhile, I softened up and realized that even with
a couple minor issues, this is my favorite GA in my collection. He
really is a well sculpted, well articulated, fun action figure, and is
one of my favorites in the entire series to date.
Mantis is one
of those that I had to have to keep the collection complete, but he
doesn't do a lot for me. It's a decent version, but I'm one of the
weirdos that will like the Super Powers variant better.
Canary has a very pretty sculpt, but the limited articulation, tiny
hands, and weird looking boots/ankles detract quite a bit from the
Now, excuse me while I rush off
to Wal-mart to see if wave 10 is in stock yet...
Packaging - ***
Sculpting - Green Arrow ****; Mantis ***1/2; Black Canary **1/2
Paint - GA, Canary ***1/2; Mantis ***
Articulation - GA ***1/2; Mantis ***; Canary **1/2
Accessories - Green Arrow ***; Canary, Mantis **
Fun Factor - ****
Value - **1/2
Overall - Green Arrow ****; Mantis ***; Canary **1/2
Where to Buy -
Online options include:
- while most folks are going to
have to turn to Target, Toys R Us or other retailers for this wave, you
can pre-order series 11, 12 and 13 by the case from
Big Bad Toy Store.
Mike's Comics N Stuff
generally sells singles, but alas, doesn't have any wave 9 in stock.
Other DCUC reviews include:
- I split wave 8 up into two
parts, one here
and one here.
- prior to that was wave 7
(duh), which I covered here.
- I broke wave six into two
reviews, one here
and one here.
- no, I never reviewed wave 5,
but prior to that was wave 4 which I also broke into this review, and this
- of course, prior to that was wave 3.
- I covered wave 1 in two parts, one here
and one at here.
It took me so freakin' long to find them, I never did review wave 2,
but if you're looking for one, Kastor's
Korner has a great review.
- last up in the DCSH figures
were the Clayface and Bruce
to Bats figures.
- before that was Mongul, who is also one
of the best figures this year and Parasite
- don't forget the 12" version of the
smaller Batman, and the 12"
- in this smaller line, the
fourth series was Superman themed, with Brainiac
and Darkseid. There's also the Batgirl and Superman
from the two packs.
- there's the guest review of series 3 Batman
- a guest review of series 2 Doomsday, and another of
the series 2 Superman.