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1966 Batman Television Show - 1/4 scale figure
NECA

1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA


It was a dream come true when all the licensing announcements for the 1966 Batman television show flooded the news last year. Warner Brothers divided things up across multiple companies, largely based on scale and style.

Mattel got the 6" action figure line, and it looks like they've already abandoned it after just a few figures. Check my Related Links section, and you'll see my reviews for their run, with the exception of Catwoman - I'll get to her soon.

Hot Toys has the license to do high end sixth scale figures, and I can barely wait until we get their Batman, Robin and Batmobile. In fact, I may simply drop dead at that point.

Until then, NECA is keeping me alive with their release of a 1/4 scale Batman. While the Adam West Batman is terrific on his own, I can't help but wish we were getting a Joker to go with him - perhaps that will be a 2014 announcement if this guy sells well.

He runs about the same as the rest of the modern NECA 1/4 scale figures, right around $85 or so depending on the retailer.
Click on the photo below for a life size version
1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA

Packaging - ***
The figure comes in a large window box, complete with old school show graphics. The inside tray has a cartoon style Batcave, which you can use for a backdrop if you're careful when removing the figure.

You have to be careful, because it's not super collector friendly. There's a ton of tough twisties, and you should have a pair of wire cutters handy. There's also some interior plastic trays that are attached to the back of the cardboard tray with tape, so you'll want to cut them free carefully.

Sculpting - ***1/2
I'm really liking the portrait on this figure. It's far superior to what we have with the 6" line, although to be fair, the Hot Toys version should crush it. Then again, when you spend $200 you expect something exceptional.

Considering the much lower price tag here, the sculpt on the head and body is extremely good. It's clearly Adam West under the cowl, and it looks like an actual cowl, done as a separate piece placed over the head, rather than part of the head sculpt itself.

The thinner body looks about right, and they used a soft rubber for the undies-on-the-outside. Going with a cloth cape was also a smart idea, making this figure more realistic...and lightening the load he has to carry.

The hands seem a smidge big for the body, but the poses are great and work well with the accessories. He stands great on his own in plenty of poses thanks to the flat feet, and he comes in at a full 18 inches tall, plus a squeak.

And in case you were wondering, the symbol is sculpted on the front of the belt buckle, but it's very, very hard to see unless the lighting is just right.

Paint - ***1/2
The paint is quite clean and consistent, and key features, like the skin tone, lips and eyes, look fantastic. They got the highlighting on the mask and cowl just right, and the largely gray costume is consistent in coverage and finish.

There are some odd spots around the inside of the shoulders and hips, and there's a few gloppy spots on the yellow of the belt. But overall, the quality is well above average, and in line with the price of the figure.

Articulation - ***
A few years back, most cheaper figures in this scale were rotocast, which meant they had a few joints at best, usually cut joints at that.

These have come a long way in this category, sporting similar articulation to mid-level smaller figures.

There's a ball jointed neck, but the tilt action is minimal. The ball shoulders and cut biceps allow for some surprising stances, like the Watusi dance. It helps that they included the hands specifically for this.  Getting him in the pose was still tricky but doable.

There's double pin elbows and single pin wrists, ball hips hidden by the soft rubber undies, click pin knees, pin ankles and a half foot pin as well.

Some of these joints require a bit of work to get free, especially the knees and the lower pin on the elbows. The cut biceps also might seem restricted in how far they can turn because of the shape of the cut, but with a little effort you can get them to go farther than you'd think at first glance. I wasn't able to get his hands to go together at first (necessary for him to hold one hand in the other, a common pose for the character) but eventually I found that it can be done. It's not perfect, but it's doable.

Accessories - ****
Most of the figures in this scale come with one or two extras at best. Bats has plenty of goodies, just like he did on the show.

While it's more of a feature than an accessory, I'm including the cool belt and buckle in this category. It opens up to reveal the button and 'communicator' label. Be careful with the cover's hinge, which seems a bit fragile. The belt itself is removable, although I wouldn't recommend it. The belt can ride higher or lower on the hips, but remember that he tended to wear it quite high on the show. The pouches are upside down, just like they were in the show.

There's an extra yellow pouch for the belt, as well as the big pouch for the folding batarang. It's even labeled on the top 'batarang'. The West Batman had a bit of an OCD issue.

The folding batarang inside this pouch works great, folding at the center on a sturdy hinge. There's also a batarang that doesn't fold, which he can hold in one of his 6 hands.

There's a pair of fists, a pair of V finger sculpts, and a gripping set that work with the accessories nicely. These pop off and on easily, and I had no fear of damage in doing so.

They've added in a short rope that you can attach to this solid batarang. It's a bit on the small side, but it's nice to have anyway.

Better yet is the hand held communicator, with retracting antennae. Nicely sculpted and painted, the moving antenna was a pleasant surprise.

That's quite a good representation for a figure this big, and all the extras make sense. A bat thermos would have been nice, but that's just because I'm such a nerd.

Outfit - ****
I'm only including this category because of the cape, which is cloth and extremely well made. There's a very nice neck clasp that works well, excellent stitching, and the inner and outer layers are made from high quality material. It is tailored to fit over the shoulders properly, and while a wire might have been a nice add, it isn't a deal breaker. It has wrinkles right out of the package, but if you take it off and give it a quick iron on low heat, it will look terrific on the shelf in any poses.

Fun Factor - ***1/2
These big guys could kill a bear if thrown just right, but they're a ton of fun too. There's a lot of figures in this scale now, making it even better for both collectors and kids.

Value - ***
Eighty five bucks isn't cheap, but this is a huge action figure - he'll tower over the rest of your collection. It's also a scale I love, and having one of my all time favorite versions of the caped crusader in this scale is good enough for me. Adding in a boatload of extras really helps boost his value too, especially over some of the other recent releases.

Things to Watch Out For -
Nothing in particular, although you do want to take some care getting the knees freed up.

Overall - ***1/2
While Mattel gave it the old college try, it didn't seem like the attention to detail was really there. My favorite item in their series was the Batmobile, and even that was overpriced considering the materials and detailing.

This is a much more impressive figure, and not just because of the massive size. The attention to detail and to the character himself is apparent, and I'm proud to put him on the shelf next to the Bride, Jack Sparrow, Aragorn, Pumpkinhead, Hellboy and the other 1/4 scale figures in this same style.

I do hope he sells well enough to convince NECA to release at last a Joker to go with him. I wouldn't complain about a Burt Ward Robin either, but I'm not going to get my hopes that high.

Score Recap:
Packaging - ***
Sculpting - ***1/2
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - ***
Accessories - ****
Outfit - ****
Fun Factor - ***1/2
Value - ***
Overall - ***1/2

Where to Buy -
Online options include these site sponsors:

- Entertainment Earth is at just $85.

- Big Bad Toy Store is also at $85.

- Fanboy Collectibles has him for $90.

- or you can search ebay for a bargain.

Related Links -
Check out the Batmobile and action figures from Mattel, including Batman and Robin two pack, the Joker,  and the first wave of figures that included Batman, Riddler, and the Penguin.

Discussion:
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1966 Batman Television show 1/4 scale action figure by NECA


This product was purchased for the review by the reviewer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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