It’s been quite a dry spell for me as far as finding new/interesting Superman action figures since I really don’t care for the New 52 style which is dominating the new merchandise, but I was pleasantly surprised on a recent Toys R Us visit to find something very cool… this Superman The Movie 7″ action figure.
NECA announced these in late October as part of a Toys R Us/Warner Brothers exclusive DVD tie-in. The figure line also includes Adam West as Batman and Heath Ledger as Joker as well as a couple of “Extreme Heroclix” versions of Batman and Superman that are sculpted in comic book style. Unfortunately, the Heroclix version is the awful New 52 design.
The official street date on these was November 7. Initially, the offer was buy a DVD from a limited list of Batman/Superman titles and get the figure half off (see this ad graphic from Action Figure Insider), and it was available only in a few Toys R Us locations.
I haven’t seen it through the Toys R Us web site, but Warner Brothers also sells these for $29.99 for a figure/DVD set through the Warner Brothers Home Entertainment eBay store, but the Reeve figures have sold out very quickly the two times I saw them. Oddly enough, Warner Brothers chose to pack in a Man of Steel DVD. Why not Superman the Movie? Probably because there are a ton of leftover DVDs of Man of Steel and no one wants them.
The first time I spotted these in person, I only saw the West Batman and Ledger Joker, plus the two comic versions, and there was no shelf price tag for the Reeve figure. When I found this one, it was the only one on the shelf and there was no tag, and it looked like it may have been a store return or something because the box was taped closed (and won’t stay closed, darn it). Because it’s been so tough to find, I bought it anyway. Retail on it was $19.99, but they sell for double that on eBay and even Warner Brothers wanted $29.99 plus shipping for their figure/DVD combo.
Here are the pictures.
The window box features a nice Superman the Movie logo over a background motif designed after the arctic Fortress of Solitude. Reminds me a lot of the packaging on Superman figure released by Madelman in the 1970s. There’s no text on the front or the sides which is really strange, but it probably was only intended as a special promo and not a separate figure line.
The back of the box has a nice photo of the figure and some text.
The packaging is touted as collector friendly, and the one I picked up had some handling wear and was probably opened before, so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to take the figure out to take some pictures. You don’t have to ruin the box to open it which is really nice… just cut the tape and the flap opens and you can slide the tray out. The figure is snapped into the insert tray and wired in with one twist tie. Note that it comes with some extra open hands. I’d rather they included a smiling Reeve head sculpt instead.
The head sculpt on this figure is excellent… clearly the best one since the Hot Toys version was released back in 2011. (Holy cow, has it been five years?!) The box lists the sculptors as Kyle Windrix and Adrienne Smith, so I don’t know who did the head. Windrix is lead sculptor at NECA and has done work on their Alien line, as well as previously working for McFarlane Toys. Smith is a freelance sculptor who has done work for both NECA and Hallmark. It’s hard to see in my pictures, but they even did a subtle sculpt of the fabric texture.
The figure stands about 7″ tall and is very articulated at the neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, waist, hips, knees and ankles. However, I would be very careful about posing it… my figure is somewhat stiff, particularly in the elbows to the point where I think if I bent his left one, it would break.
The cape is made of fabric and includes the yellow Superman emblem. It isn’t wired so you can’t really pose it, but it still looks fantastic.
For whatever reason, some toy guys are always looking for something to criticize about a figure. With this release, though, I’d say there isn’t much room for improvement aside from maybe cleaner paint operations. I don’t know what the edition size on this “limited” figure, but if you see it, grab it, because it’s been very tough to find.