At San Diego Comic-Con, Mattel announced the start of the Club Infinite Earths subscription for DC Universe Classics and a shift back to more mainstream character mixes for their retail line. A lot of you took this as a harbinger of the demise of DC Universe Classics at retail. The subscription failing to hit the sales target originally set by the Mattel team, was yet another signal of impending doom.
Mattel hopes to set the record straight, showing off new figures for Club Infinite Earths, the retail line, and some more retailer exclusive 2-packs. And, yes, the “last” DC Universe Classics wave in production form, the Nekron Collect and Connect wave. Is it enough to put the collector community at ease? You tell me.
DC Universe Classics Wave 20
We hadn’t previously seen the height-corrected Sinestro in his Corps outfit or the White Lantern Flash when Mattel first showed this wave in 2-up form at San Diego Comic-Con. I think most of these translated well down to 6-inches, but I’m going to have to do something to fix Ollie’s hood.
Toys R Us 2-Packs
I’m glad to see that there’s still enough support from Toys R Us for retailer exclusive 2-packs. I think these are stronger than what we’ve gotten recently in that they all have completely new decoes, unlike Captain Marvel / Black Adam, and the Harley Quinn that just had modified paint apps for her face from the 2-pack with Joker. I still think these fall somewhat in the no man’s land between appealing to kids and appealing to collectors. Bats and Azrael I think are better suited for kids, but Hal and Kyle? Hard to say, as I’m not sure the rainbow corps is something kids necessarily know about yet, and I’m not sure collectors really want their favorite Green Lanterns in their flash in the pan dalliances with the other Corps.
Batman’s battle damage is just some new paint apps, and Toy Guru pointed out that it’s one step closer to the Super Powers Batman (without the black shading on the cowl). He still wants a pure Super Powers Batman, and all he’d have to do is remove the battle damage. For those of you eyeballing the gauntlets on Azrael, they are still backwards.
Club Infinite Earths
Mattel told us they’d be showing off Metron and his Mobius Chair – for me, that’s another one knocked off my Cosmic Odyssey checklist. Metron’s in 2-up format, as are Starman, Flash, and Atrocitus. The Mobius Chair is sculpted to scale. I had hoped Mattel would reveal what look they’d be going for with the other figure they’ve announced, Poison Ivy, but we were told there are no more new DC reveals coming this show.
Larfleeze and Penguin
Toy Guru is hoping that by revealing Larfleeze as an upcoming retail figure that this will put to rest the notion that next year’s retail line will be all DCnU. He’s not sure how that became the prevailing view in the collector community, but he wants people to know that it’s not going to be all about the new 52. He acknowledges that some of the new designs will make it to retail, but there’s still going to be figures like Larfleeze that make it to retail.
Personally, I think that as the Green Lantern craze was running wild last year, Mattel had plans for more GL stuff to go alongside of GL Classics and the Rainbow Lantern wave. Take White Lantern Flash and Nekron from wave 20, mix in the Sinestro Corps Hal and the very hopeful Kyle, and add Larfleeze and you’re well on your way to another GL-themed wave.
Penguin is another Super Powers figure that we’ll knock off the list. Mattel hasn’t announced a home for this in the 2012 lineup, but you’d think it’d go in Batman Legacy if there were room.
So, what do you think? How’s the outlook for DC Universe Classics in 2012?