Sunday, January 12, 2014
Action Figure Review: Batman from Arkham Origins by DC Collectibles
The articulation on the Arkham Origins figures has been very sporadic, but fortunately Batman is incredibly impressive with a great range of movement. He features: swivel/hinge ankles, double hinged knees with a swivel at the top, h-hinged hips, swivel waist, ab hinge, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel hinge elbows, ball jointed wrists, and a ball jointed head. That's a lot more articulation than your standard DC Collectibles figure and honestly a little more than most DC Universe Classics figures as well. Due to his bulky armor, some of the joints (like the elbows and head) are more limited than others but overall I'm pretty pleased with it. The double jointed knees really are useful in allowing Batman to take on some brooding, crouching positions. I really wish he had a soft cape as they look better in a variety of poses, but the rubbery cape he has is fairly pliable and shouldn't impede articulation much. I haven't had any problems with breakage or loose joints. I'll also point out that due to the nature of Batman's armored costume, the joints are very well hidden.
Every time I look at the sculpt I find myself more and more impressed. It's just incredible and so full of detail that you can't help but feel like Batman just appeared right out of your television screen. If I have one complaint it's that the head might be a little small, although I feel like that is fairly faithful to the game's style. The headsculpt though? Amazing. This might just be my favorite Batman headsculpt ever. It's not exaggerated with a teeth bearing scowl, but no one could mistake this Batman as being in a good mood. The mask does show Bruce's actual eyes through the cowl and it really nails a piercing stare. The armor that covers Batman's body looks great. It looks like multiple separate pieces while managing to not look overly busy and distracting. The utility belt is a little plain, but it does have some pouches and interesting pouches on it. And the gauntlets? They're excellent! They're really wicked and functional looking and manage to be nice and straight (warped gauntlets on Batman figures are nothing new).
Overall the paintwork is fantastic, but there are a few problems that keep this from perfection. I think I'm going to whip out the ol' compliment sandwich here. There's lots of nice detail work on this sculpt. The seams between the panels as does the dry brushing on the cowl. Really impressive stuff. There are some oddities, though. First, the face looks less stubbly and more like it's covered in grime or soot. Maybe this is leftover from Batman's fight with Firefly? The tip of my Batman's nose on the cowl is also missing a bit of paint. Lastly, it looks like the something happened with the cape. It's actually molded in gray plastic and painted black, meaning that since it's soft and flexible some of the paint rubs off pretty easily. This isn't as big of a problem under the cape, but the visible back of the cape also suffers from this problem. Overall, I do think this is one of my favorite Batman outfit designs, though. I love the look of the gray and black together. The black gives it a grounded, real world look while the gray helps to give the suit some much needed variation that keeps it interesting to look at.
I'm a little disappointed that no accessories are included here. Batman should be the easiest character in the world to create accessories for, but it seems that far too often companies neglect to do it. All of the Arkham games have been very heavily focused on Batman's vast array of gadgets and DC Direct/ DC Collectible has been really good about including some of those with each Batman release. This guy, though? Nothing.
While Big Bad Toy Store is sold out of this guy, they've got plenty of other Arkham Origins figures and preorders available now. I've also reviewed the following figures from the Arkham Origins line: