After largely sticking to movies and TV characters, Mattel is slowly winning me back to its DC Comics Multiverse line. The latest wave definitely had a strong Batman theme and only one completely unrelated TV character. I was thrilled Mattel added one of my favorite new additions to the Bat family with Batwing. I’ve been a fan starting with the original’s New 52 debut, but Luke Fox has made the role his own.
Batwing covers a unique spot on the Gotham Knights in Detective Comics. He’s basically their Tony Stark with 52 percent less ego. And if Mattel is skewing more modern characters with DC Multiverse, I’m thrilled he made the cut earlier rather than later.
Packaging: I’m not loving the packing for the line. It’s too busy with all the multi-language text. On the back it’s just as cluttered save the easy to follow breakdown of which characters comes with what part of the Build A Figure Rookie. The way the package is set up it’s hard to figure out if the name of the character is Batwing or Rookie.
Mattel needs to refine this package set up to showcase the figure better. The side panel is a nice piece of comic art with a very brief bio. Likely due to some mistake the characters’ names are replaced with codes. Too bad for the non comic book fans out there.
Likeness: While they couldn’t get all of the armor detailing, Mattel did a nice job getting some of the unique elements onto the sculpt. There’s paneling, rivets and a sculpted bat logo. The head sculpt is my favorite aspect of the figure. The ear points are just the right length and the sculpting work reflects the layers of the helmet.
- Every WWE Survivor Series team in figure form
- Looking back at the good and bad of DC Rebirth Year One
- 7 reasons why DC Collectibles failed with DC Icons
- The Flash: Crisis on Earth-X Part 3 review S4 E8
Scale: The newer DC Multiverse figures seem slighter than the DC Classics figures. Batwing looks noticeably smaller next to those figures. A little size discrepancy isn’t the worst thing in a line that largely used two to three base bodies so it’s not too big an issue.
Paint: Mattel did an excellent job on this front, which is much more than some accents on an all black mold. For starters, Mattel used a pearlescent black paint to simulate that metallic armor sheen.
My favorite aspect of the paintjob is the work done on the logo. In the comics, that lights up like the eye slots and Mattel did this amazing gradient technique to mimic the light glow. That technique also is done on the eye slots. This is something Hasbro has struggled to get right with the Iron Man figures, but Batwing proves it can be done without LED assistance.
Articulation: I’ve been a little spoiled with Marvel Legends figures so the range on Batwing threw me off until I posed him with other DC Classics. Batwing can hit the standard flight poses thanks to great range with the neck joint, but the single joints on the elbows and knees really feels restrictive.
I’m leery about moving the knees too far back as they look prone to breakage. The ankle joint is also very limited. This is in keeping with the rest of the line, but this is one aspect Mattel needs to hurry up and catch up with Hasbro pronto.
- ball hinge shoulders
- wrist hinge
Accessories: Batwing comes appropriately with his separate wing piece. The only down side is it’s one piece with no articulation meaning if you keep it on, Batwing is going to be a major display shelf space hog. I definitely would have liked to have gotten a separate Luke Fox head sculpt. Just to show that he is another black superhero in the DCU.
He also comes with the arms and pistol for the Rookie Batman BAF. More than likely I’ll end up collecting him since I’m interested in the majority of this set.
Worth it? Mattel is wisely keeping these figures at the same price as Marvel Legends. The figures look smaller in the package, but for a pretty equal size and accessories, this is a decent deal. Of course if you can get it cheaper that’s even better.
Rating: 8 out of 10
Even though he looks simple, the paintjob and sculpting help Batwing stand out. With better articulation at the knees and elbows he’d be even better.
Where to get it? I found Batwing at Toys R Us. I’ve spotted remnants of this wave — normally Atom — but the others have been much more elusive. This might be one of those times where ordering the case might be the way to go. You can get one from Entertainment Earth, which has the set in stock now. Or you can grab the solo figure for $18 on Amazon.com.