Review: SUPERGIRL, ROBIN, & SUPERBOY From DC Icons Line

DC Icons
Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)

DC Collectibles has a new Icons wave coming out in comic shops, which includes Nightwing and a "Superman vs. Doomsday" two-pack. Newsarama received two of the offerings from this wave, Supergirl and the Superboy/Robin “Super Sons” two-pack. Do they make the grade? Let’s find out!

Credit: Warner Bros. Collectibles

Supergirl (Rebirth)

Supergirl’s had many toy versions lately, ranging from the likeness of TV counterpart Melissa Benoist to the Superman: The Animated Series take. Sadly, still none based off Helen Slater in the 1984 Supergirl movie (it wasn’t very good, but she was!).

To answer the question that comes up every time a new design of Supergirl is rendered: No, this figure’s not wearing pants; it’s more like the blue part of her outfit is a unitard with a skirt around it. Let’s move on, please.

Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)

This is the “Rebirth” design of Supergirl, which kinda-sorta combines elements from the TV and comic book versions - the most distinct elements are fingerless gloves at the end of the arm-length sleeves, and thigh-high boots. The figure uses very bright primary colors, with nearly-white blonde hair and pale features, perhaps a result of the printed-painting process used on many more recent figures. A little flesh-tone painting or a base makeup might help, along with a brighter yellow for the hair.

Supergirl’s hair is a separate sculpted piece and kind of falls over one of her eyes, but it’s not too obtrusive; there’s an oddly neutral expression on her face, sort of blank. A little more ferocity/determination/optimism/something would have been nice. On the bright side, points for having a sculpted “S” logo instead of just paint.

Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)

Poseability is decent but limited. A new trend for female character figures is to give them a bit of articulation at their upper torso, which allows some flexibility without the pencil-thin waist that’s long been a problem for plastic depictions of those with XX chromosomes. This means that Supergirl can at least throw a punch, but there’s still some overall limitations to how much you can pose her.

Her cape has some heft, but is sculpted to drape over her shoulders, meaning she can’t lift her arms very far; her skirt poses similar trouble for her legs, which don’t let her bend over very far. If you want to recreate the “crouched over, about to launch from the ground” Supergirl pose shown in many TV commercials... you’re out of luck. At least she’s not wearing high heels.

Supergirl comes with three sets of hands total - fists, gripping, and open-ended for flying or running around like Freakazoid if anyone remembers that show, and anyone else want to see DC Collectibles do a Freakazoid line? In addition, she comes with an alternate “heat vision” head and two heat-vision blasts that plug into the alternate head’s eyes…which, without them, might well be one of the worst things I have ever seen in my life.

Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)
Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)

Try not to lose the heat vision attachments, but if you do, you can always pretend the alternate head represents Supergirl infected with the deadly Kryptonian Bloodmorel from the classic Alan Moore story “The Jungle Line,” or with a really bad case of pink eye, or perhaps it’s some Elseworlds where she’s just realized she’s unknowingly killed her mother and married her father (read a book) or is some kind of Crossroads Demon (watch more TV).

Imagination. It’s key for toys.

On that note, it’s possible to get a little heat-vision effect if you angle a mini-LED correctly; you can get a pack of 48 for $8 on Amazon.

In addition to all that, Supergirl comes with a sort-of flight stand - it’s a cone-shaped thing whose top is sloped, to try to combine the elements of a typical figure stand with something that makes the character look elevated. Frankly, it doesn’t work - it took many, many set-ups to get a picture where the figure and stand didn’t fall over. If you want to make it look like Supergirl is in flight, you’re better off with a flight stand or a Dynamic Figure Stand from a company like NECA or Tamashii Nations.

Overall: There are worse options for a Supergirl figure, and this is good if you want a basic pose for display, but you might want to do some customization on the face, and please make sure you don’t lose the heat-vision attachments.

Rating: 8 out of 10

 

Credit: Warner Bros. Collectibles

Super Sons 2-Pack

History Lesson: These are the most recent versions of the Super Sons, who got their own series just earlier this year. The first versions of the characters were the sons of Superman and Batman in the near future, who had their own series by the late, lamented Bob Haney in World’s Finest back in the 1970s, later retconned to be computer simulations because... comic books, that’s why. Their adventures were reprinted a few years ago, if you want to check them out.

Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)

The current incarnation consists of Superboy Jonathan Kent, the son of Lois Lane and Superman who... let’s just say timelines had to be reset at least three times for him to exist, and Damian Wayne, the long-lost ninja-trained son of Batman and Ra’s al Guhl’s daughter Talia, whose history involves a bit of retconning and genetic engineering and Lazarus Pits and stuff, just go with it.

Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)

The two characters get some of the brightest, most vivid coloring in the Icons line, and are well-sulpted; Jonathan has a lanky, innocent look to him, while Damian’s look is properly arrogant/cagey. They’re well-proportioned to the other figures, and Superboy stands a head taller than Damian. Little details help; Jonathan has some tears in his jeans, while Damian’s gloves have a slightly metallic green to them, underscoring the sharp Batman-type blades just above the wrists.

There’s a lot of fun to be had with these. Jonathan has the look of a little kid dressing up as Superman, while Damian has the “adult ninja with child-like enthusiasm” thing going. Poseability is decent, but with limitations; both character have an ab crunch of sorts in the form of a ball joint in their midsections, and Jonathan popped apart while coming out of the box. Damian had issues similar to Supergirl’s above with a draped cape and skirt inhibiting his arm and leg movements. One of his legs popped off the ball joint while setting up a photo; getting it back on required a pair of tweezers to get the joint back to where the leg could snap back on.

Accessory-wise, both characters come with the standard alternate hands, with four sets total for Jonathan and five total for Damian. Frankly, Jonathan looks best with the fists he comes with in the package; the joints are a little obvious, but it gives him a cute “put up your dukes!” quality, not unlike Scrappy-Doo, only less loathed by the internet. Damian’s hands blend more easily into his costume, and allow for a variety of poses; a personal favorite are the hands with his brass knuckles and ninja stars, which imply a “come at me!” pose.

Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)
Credit: Zack Smith (Newsarama)

Each character also has a specific accessory; Jonathan has the same flight stand-type cone that came with Supergirl, though the figure’s smaller frame means it works a little better here. Damian comes with his bo-staff, which is decent for some poses, though it’s about as fragile as a piece of spaghetti. Use sparingly.

Overall: Honestly, this pack was a blast. The bright colors and fun sculpts allow for a sort of goofy, Calvin & Hobbes type of “kids playing superhero” series of poses. Be careful with the posing, but fans should let their imaginations run free with these two scamps.

Rating: 8 out of 10

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