Finally! While we’re toy-lovers through and through, we still have our favorites. One of those favorite lines is DC Universe Classics, and we were extremely excited by the prospect of having a figure of Robin – the classic Super Powers version! However, this tale of childhood nostalgia was not without its own pitfalls, including having to track down a replacement figure after our first one snapped to pieces. Yes, snapped into pieces… as in “multiple”. It was like having a Jason Todd figure, minus the Joker and a crowbar! Still, even that isn’t enough for us to totally write off the Boy Wonder; so, here’s our review of Robin from Mattel’s DC Universe Classics!
Dick Grayson grew up performing with his famous family of aerialists, The Flying Graysons. One night, after their equipment was sabotaged, Dick’s parents fell to their deaths, leaving their son orphaned with thoughts only of vengeance. Recognizing something of himself in the boy, Batman offered to train Grayson. Taking the name Robin, he soon patrolled Gotham City alongside his mentor, helping Batman against a score of his most dangerous foes.
The sculpt for this figure is pretty much perfect. No kidding here, folks! Both versions have the same terrific body, while sporting heads that represent Dick in the two distinct looks he sported during the early days of DC Comics and the 70/80s respectively. As far as we can tell, Robin scores a 100% new sculpt and the Four Horsemen made sure to take full advantage of the opportunity! Every piece of the famous costume is present, from the collared cape to the elf boots, and the scaled man-panties in between! Robin uses the new taller teenage size (much like the previously released Superboy), and it helps the 80’s version to look the part of a Teen Titan. However, it just doesn’t match up with the Golden Age head as much since during that time in comics, Robin was much, much younger. It’s like Bruce pumped his ass full of horse steroids and sent him out into Gotham! Still, when considering the Super Powers-era head – this is a fantastic figure! Even with the extra articulation, the sculpt isn’t marred nearly as much as you might think.
Robin is mostly molded in his correct colors, but none of those involve his skin. Yep, this little acrobatic crime fighter has completely painted skin tones. While this keeps him from suffering from the often too-pale plastic, it does cause for some color differences between the sections of his legs. However, as the photos show – it’s not really noticeable unless you’re just hunting for problems, like a nay-saying stick-in-the-mud! Keep that in mind when searching through the pegs; assuming you’re lucky enough to find this guy in stores (Target seems to be getting them as of this writing). The mask, smile, and all the other details have been painted with the minimum amount of rage-inducing sloppiness, and Robin comes off looking like a million bucks. The “R” logo is stamped on cleanly as well and finalizes this half of the Dynamic Duo as one worthy addition to the DCUC line.
“Holy-Horrific-Dismemberment, Batman!” When it comes to articulation, Robin is at the top of his game; but, for us it came at a costly price… as in, 18 bucks for another figure! It’s true folks, our first foray into Wave 16 ended in heartache and shame as Robin’s head and feet tore free from their pegs simply from turning them! We screamed profanities to the heavens and shook our fists at our obviously cruel gods in a swearing of vengeance!... then we went to the local comic shop and whipped out our wallets. However, we only did this after opening our Golden Age version and seeing just how friggin’ awesome he was! How friggin’ awesome is he?! Well, let’s list off his articulation, shall we? Robin feature a ball-joint neck (that really works the full range), swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, double-hinged elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, hinged torso, swivel waist, swivel/hinge hips, swivel thighs, double-hinged knees, and swivel/hinge ankles! All that new articulation allows for Robin to be posed in pretty much any stance a kid fighting crazed criminals would need to strike. None of the joints on either Robin (all 3 really) were loose and all have a great range of movement thanks to the soft plastic used on the lower tunic and the rubbery cape.
Robin comes packaged with a couple of accessories, and that’s a rare commodity in the extras-starving DCUC line. The grappling gun and batarang are both welcome and useful additions to the figure. While the batarang is well sculpted and does fit into Robin’s hand, let’s face it -- you’re going to lose it in the carpet. No getting around it, people! That thing is destined to end up either in the vacuum cleaner or your pet’s stomach! The grappling gun on the other hand, is pretty terrific and will work well in any of the Bat-family figure’s hands. It has a small line attached to the projectile and can be manually pulled from the handle and hooked onto just about anything. This will allow your Robin to pull one of those sweet 60’s-era building climbs that were made famous by the old live-action TV series.
Most of the time, we (as in, myself -- Lemonjuice McGee) would just skip the review of a figure if it broke straight out of the package. However, we gave Robin the benefit of the doubt since the Golden Age version didn’t have any problems… and we’re glad we did. Robin really is not only an essential part of any sweet classic Batman collection, but he’s turned out to be one of the highlights of the line. So far, with reviews of Bane, Jonah Hex, and Robin – Wave 16 is all about quality of character, if not quality control!
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