I’m an idiot. Truly, I’ve got no sense as a figure collector. I know the DC Essentials line is staring the reaper in the face and yet when I was at my comic book store yesterday, I picked up the DC Essentials Nightwing. Why do I hate my wallet so?
Actually, I’m being dramatic. I grew up with Dick Grayson as Robin, something most comic readers can’t say anymore, and loved his evolution to Nightwing. And if I’m going to get any non-JLA member for this DOA Essentials line, Nightwing is a pretty good choice. It doesn’t hurt that the figure is pretty well done too.
Packaging: I always like the very clean presentation of DCC figures. The Essentials line sticks with the established pattern of a mostly white package with the appropriate accent colors — in this case, Nightwing blue.
DCC actually put some effort into the bio this time, which I always appreciate. There was some nice consideration for the package setup as well with Batgirl facing left, Harley Quinn facing right and Joker slightly off center. It’s a nice presentation minus the bare interior.
There’s no getting around how empty the figure looks in this package. DCC really should opt for slimmer packaging since there’s so much wasted space in this current setup.
Likeness: Nightwing has had a variety of costume adjustments over the years, but the basic look is so iconic there’s little reason to make sweeping changes. I did like the red New 52 version, but the baby blue is Nightwing.
The head sculpt is great and carried over exceptionally well from the prototype we saw a year ago. It features a focused Nightwing with just enough hint of a smile to show Dick Grayson’s personality. The forearms feature a belt-like strap, but that’s about it as far as sculpted on elements to the costume save the knuckle points on the gloves. That’s no knock on DCC as that’s consistent with the source material.
As a result of the costume, Nightwing’s arms look longer than some of the other Essential figures since there’s no color break around the elbows or gloves. This is a simple enough fix by going for a battle stance, but at his side, they look too long.
Scale: Depending on who’s drawing him, Nightwing is typically portrayed a bit shorter than Batman and Superman despite now being an adult. The Essentials line is using one base body with adjustments as needed. This hurts in this instance as Nightwing shouldn’t look about the same size as Superman or Aquaman.
Paint: This might have been one of the easier figures DCC has had to tackle in awhile in terms of paint. The logo lines up perfectly with the shoulders and the shin blue waves carry over with no issue. The mask paint applications are a little off on mine. I had to look very close to see some splotches around the hairline.
Articulation: The Essentials line sports some of the best articulation we’ve seen from DCC. Figures move fluidly and can achieve better poses than most of their counterparts. As usual, the biggest issue with this line as a whole is the wonky ankle joints, which require delicate balancing to get right. Once you master that, there’s a lot of fun to be had trying out new poses for him.
- elbow (double-jointed)
- wrist hinge
- knee (double-jointed)
Accessories: DC Collectibles rarely comes off well in this category. DC Icons packed a ton of useful accessories. For the Essentials line, DCC went the other direction and only included what’s…essential (sorry). For Nightwing that means he gets a pair of Eskrima sticks — this marked the first time I didn’t have to fix the spelling of that (yay!).
While they have some nice detailing, they seem a bit small for this scale…maybe even for the six-inch scale too. Maybe I can borrow a pair of nunchuks from my Marvel Legends Daredevil?
Rating: 8 out of 10
Raise this score higher if you’re a hardcore Nightwing fan or a DCC completist as he’s absolutely worth adding to your collection. Otherwise, I think you’d be better suited waiting for the DC Multiverse version that’s coming a few more months. While both figures are parts of dying lines, the Multiverse one fits in better with an existing collection and is a better value.
Where to get it? Start at your local comic book store. Amazon had earlier waves of the line for as low as $3 at one point. At that price, just get them all. Of the Essentials line, Nightwing is one of the better figures save the need for a smaller base body. You can grab him now from Amazon here if you’re impatient like me.