After I purchased my first toy as an adult just a few months ago, I quickly and unexplainably became consumed with action figures again. It was around this time that I found out about Mattel’s 8” D.C. Retro Action figures- they reminded me of my old Mego World’s Greatest Superheroes so much- 8” tall with CLOTH outfits! Fun! Yes, there is a certain exaggerated awkwardness to the “Mego Style” of action figure, but that’s what I liked. The new line of Mattel Retro Action received some criticism by the action figure community, and I understand why- they DO have some back/posture issues, extreme lack of accessories, and a very cartoonish look to them. Some of you appreciate a more thorough attention to detail such as in a Medicom, Hot Toys, or Sideshow figure, and you spend some serious money on these beautiful pieces of art. I’m an artist, and completely identify with what Toy Haven had to say about collecting action figures:
“Every collector probably has his or her own reasons and I realized that mine is simply because toys are 3-D forms of art. I always enjoyed the visual arts and grew up on comics rather than books or novels. So when your comic book hero becomes a 3-D rendition that you can hold and scrutinize from every angle, it's a must-have. What is even better is when the same comic heroes get made into movies and movie merchandise. Now you have 1/6 scale versions (because at 1/6 scale, they are big enough to be appreciated yet small enough to be displayed en masse) of those characters dressed in their costumes and carrying all their accessories - one MUST appreciate the art that goes into making them.”
At any rate and before I begin to ramble, I went on to purchase the Mattel Retro Action Batman and Superman action figures a couple months after I landed the 1978 Kenner 15” Vader ($19.99 and $19.42 on Amazon, free shipping).
Batman: I love that Mattel got rid of the “oven mitts” Mego produced for gloves and just left the hands blue- I also like his stitched arm bands. A real homage to the Mego version of Batman’s suit, I enjoy the classic styling and am not concerned with the chunkier boots or the thick cowl as some were- they’re cool. I'm glad they put a removeable cowl on Bats as Mego had at first, leaving a slit up the back of the cowl to help remove it, but I won't likely to attempt taking it off again- it's a TIGHT FIT. As I said, I actually appreciate that these look that way- exaggeratedly simplified and fun like a toy should be.
Superman: The classic superman outfit, I like the bright colors and retro head sculpt they put in the figure. The screen printed “S” on his chest wasn’t centered properly on his suit though, and his belt seems a little flimsy and doesn’t fit to his body well, unlike Batman. The chest emblem also began to crack almost immediately, and perhaps this is preferable to losing the sticker they equipped the Megos with. Like Batman and the other four Mattel figures like this I bought in short order, Superman has posture issues due to the rubberband connecting his torso to his pelvis, but all-in-all it’s fun.
Until next time, remember: With internet toy shopping comes great responsibility!
Excelsior! …or umm, Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel! …or Up, Up, and Away! …oh, nevermind *sigh*