Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A Brief History of Green Lantern Figures: 4" Movie Line

Yes, we know they are 3 and 3 quarter inch..but that's too wordy in the headline.

So by now you've probably seen the movie and loved it or hated it and either way, we dig the Lanterns, so we were fated to create this massive photo shoot either way. DESTINY CALLED US!!! In the end, I shot somewhere in the neighborhood of 450 pics, so we thought it best to not overload your retinas with jade all at once. We'll begin with Mattel's brandie new 3 and 3 quarter scaled Green Lantern movie line!

As you've seen in the trailers and/or the movie itself, the costumes for the film are a bit more complicated than the basic, classic green and black we've come to know and love. This lends itself to the action figure format, providing for a more interesting sculpt and inadvertently forces Mattel to create new bodies for each figure, rather that use the same one continually while swapping out heads, hands or feet as has been the practice in their DC Universe Classics line. The trade off for this added detail is articulation. The single packed figures feature some extra movement in the shoulders and waist when compared to the deluxe and vehicle versions which keep only the most basic of swivel joints in a whopping 5 point configuration. This equals limited playability and for those who pose and leave be, a bit of tweaking to be done if you want those skinnier of Lanterns in the line to utilize their constructs in the display, which we know you will. SPEAKING OF CONSTRUCTS...this may be the driving force to get the die hard DCU fan to buy the line. While you may be able to skip over those deluxe models with the constructs that spring into action (even though that series boasts the best Kilowog in my opinion), with all their rocket firing features, the basic constructs may be hard to overlook once you realize some of them fit quite well with your 6 inch DCUC lanterns! Why else would you buy a figure we've been calling Disco Lantern all week? To get a translucent green buzz saw damnit!! Granted, you'll be paying 8 dollars for this awesome little accessory, so perhaps it will be something to hunt for in future ebay sales. We'll talk more about how well those constructs transfer over later.

The "deluxe" versions in your 3 and 3 quarter line I spoke about in passing earlier are called "Battle Shifters". These packs include one figure and one construct that has a sort of transforming feature that activates on a hair trigger and often projectiles of some sort. These are absolutely cute for the kiddies, but those little hands may get a little frustrated as it is a bit of a bitch to get them to stay in their locked up form while still handling them or trying to put them in the hands of their Lantern masters. The "Battle Fist" Hal Jordan was especially mind numbing, as I couldn't figure out how to get it to lock up at all. Point of fact, on the packaging, someone is holding it closed as well, suggesting there is indeed, no way to keep it closed. Never the less, the construct is amusing if you'd like to set up a Frisbee scene with Hal and Sinestro as they bond over stories of the orange and pink alien women they've banged. Good times.

We've also taken a look at two vehicles in the line; one being a translucent green light cycle that revs n gos with the pull of a rip chord and Abin Sur's Space Pod. The neat feature is that you can plug your ring into a spot on each one to activate the action. The oddness comes in trying to figure out how to fire the missile on the cycle and where to stick Abin Sur so it looks like he's activating a giant gun construct. Of course, looking at the box helps, but you are more likely to rip the thing apart, play for a bit, get frustrated and go hunting for the box once again in your trash. While not completely based on designs straight from the film, these vehicles are still happy funtimes for the younger among you and a hell of a lot better than Iron Man riding on a 4 wheeled off road vehicle (as hilarious as that may still be).

Right now I'd like to talk to you about the crown jewel of this line. It's not Blazing Hi-Five Hal Jordan or Double Sword Choppin' Sinestro. It's a big blob of ugly called Parralax (or as Eileen calls him..the Grabboid.. since he reminds her of Tremors.) Now, you will instantly say this is the most hideous thing Mattel has put out in quite some time, and you would be right, but what this creeper lacks in good looks, it more than makes up for in hysterical play. First off, after you've clipped on his tentacle extensions, you'll find that running him along on his wheels sends them flailing in the most awesome of RAAAAR!! motions. Next, grab firm of his..umm...private tentacle...and his chest bursts open while a sort of eagle talon shoots out!! If you've lined Parralax up right and provided him with a small action figure target if the slim variety, he will grab your hero and suck him into his chest. BUT WAIT!! THERE'S MORE!! Parralax is prone to indigestion from time to time, so grab his yellow demon junk once more and give a hearty pull to send the swallowed up hero figure flying from his chest with more velocity and your average rocket firing Boba Fett. Yes, friends, this toy doubles as a 3 and 3 quarter action figure launcher, instantly making it the most fun toy of the year. How can you resist?

CLICK HERE for 100 more pictures!! Check back here soon for part 2 of this series!

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