Toy Review: Two-Face as Batman (Batman Reborn)


I've griped time and again about the DC Universe Classics line here on the Dork Dimension. I share many of the complaints others have with the line, but ultimately I realized that my main problem lies with the sculpts themselves. It's not the reuse of parts that's the issue (although that is a huge problem in and of itself) it's the fact that the caricatures often seem generic and don't exude the fun abstraction and detailing that artists employ to make the characters so visually exciting in the comic books. Obviously, Mattel wasn't meeting my DC superhero action figure requirements, so I decided to branch out of the DCUC box and explore other options. That's why I picked up this Two-Face as Batman from the Batman: Reborn comic series. Let's check him out!


Stats

Company: DC Direct
Size: 7"
Price: $16.99 (from BigBadToyStore)
Packaging: Carded


Appearance

This Two-Face Batman is anything but generic. The first thing you'll notice is Two-Face's half-scarred countenance and weird googly eye. But the bisected effect isn't restricted to the face as the costume is also differentiated into halves with different sculpted details: spikes adorn the "evil" arm, and the utility belt holds different pouches for each half. The structure of the muscles looks great (forearms and the abs in particular) and the spandexy folds imply the tautness of the costume over the musculature. Two-Face even holds his coin in one hand.



Paint apps are strong and sharp. There are a few little blips here and there, but they're not very noticeable and they don't detract from the figure. Also, the blue side has a nice glossy finish that further differentiates it from the matte red side (note: the cape is all gloss).


Articulation

Two-Face Batman has a little less articulation than his DCUC cousins: ball-socket head, ball-socket shoulders, swivel biceps, hinge elbows, swivel forearms, swivel waist, t-swivel hips and hinge knees. Although Two-Face is missing the hinge chest of DCUC figures, I'm actually glad that joint wasn't included because it would ruin the sculpt of the six-pack (and it doesn't work very well with rubber capes anyway). Also, thankfully Two-Face doesn't have ankle joints, which are my most hated POAs since they often destroy the "standability" of the figure on the shelf (I'm looking at you, Optikk). But I do miss DCUC's swivel-hinge hips and swivel thighs, which would have greatly improved the figure's leg mobility.


Accessories

Two-Face comes with two accessories (appropriately enough):
  • Handgun: An awesome accessory that looks great and is appropriate to the character. It's weird to have a Batman figure on the shelf holding a gun, but it's weird in a cool way.
  • Stand: The stand is crazy small so I doubt it will do much to increase stability. It's barely larger than one of his feet. To be useful, a stand has to be able to fit both feet comfortably. This plain black stand also has no specific relevance to Two-Face. I think it would have been cool to include a stand that is a giant version of Two-Face's scarred coin.

Value

At $17, Two-Face Batman is a bit more expensive than the typical $15 DCUC figure. But the quality of the figure (sculpt, paint apps, etc) exceeds that of most DCUC figures, more so than you'd expect from a figure that costs only $2 more. Two-Face's plastic is harder and possibly more brittle than the DCUC figures, which may lead to more breakage if a point of articulation sticks. On the other hand, I've had a few DCUC figures break at the joints, so I'm not sure if I would say that the DC Direct plastic is of a lesser quality.


Coolness

I haven't read Batman: Reborn so I don't know the exact story behind this rendition of Two-Face. (I think Bruce Wayne died and a bunch of schmucks tried to take over as the Caped Crusader, one of whom was Two-Face.) But I don't need to know the storyline to know the inherent coolness of this figure, which blends the awesomeness of Batman himself with that of my favorite villain. The imaginative and distinctive costume design really sells this figure and makes him the star of a Batman display shelf. I also love the bold choice of red and blue that differentiate the halves. The costume designer wisely switched-up the sides on which the red and blue appear for each body part (so the torso is blue on his right, and the head and legs are blue on his left) to break up the colors and make the costume more visually interesting. The excessive coolness of this figure's design makes me wonder what other Batman conglomerations would look like. What about Joker in his own Batman costume? Or Batman/Superman composited together? Oh yeah... the latter has already been done...


Overall

A figure like this Two-Face Batman is exactly what I want in my 1/12th-scale DC Universe collection. Its sculpt has a really interesting look that captures the expressive stylings of comics really well. And the cost is certainly comparable to other similarly-scaled superhero figures. The limited leg articulation and crappy stand are the only things holding this figure back from a perfect 5 score. Regardless, it looks like I'll be turning my focus towards DC Direct for now.


DISCLAIMER: All items reviewed on Dork Dimension were purchased by the reviewer unless otherwise noted. The opinions expressed on Dork Dimension are solely those of the author and are presented for entertainment purposes only.