Monday, November 9, 2020

LEGION TOYS: Superboy Prime (DC Universe Classics)

Whether you love him or hate him, Superboy-Prime is arguably one of the greatest enemies of not only the Legion of Super-Heroes, but the entire DC Comics Multiverse! One of the possible secret identities for the Legion's oldest foe, the Time Trapper, the Superboy of Earth-Prime was the leader of the pack when the Legion of Super-Villains went head to head with the Legion of Super-Heroes in Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds mini-series!

The sculpt is probably the most problematic issue with this figure. Everything about it is competent enough, but if I'm being perfectly honest it is very disappointing. This begins the use of what I'll call the fugly Superboy head-sculpt, that was also reused for the  DC Signature Collection aka Club Infinite Earths  Superboy. The forehead is huge, he has ears as big as Dumbo, and an elongated nose and face that looks nothing like Superboy from any universe. In addition, the scale is all wrong. Prime should be in scale with previous Superboy figures from this line. The most upsetting thing is that they already should have had this sculpt ready-made with the Superboy included in the Legion of Super-Heroes box set. Instead, he is nearly a head taller than most teen Superboy figures. I believe this is because while a thin and lanky adult torso was used to approximate a teenage look, the arms and legs appear to be from a standard adult style figure. The Anti-Monitor Armor overlays and tattered cape are sculpted well enough, even if I am upset with the proportions and scale for this figure.

I count 25 points of articulation for Superboy-Prime in total. His neck can move in a 360 rotation,  tilt up and down, as well as side-to-side. Arms can move up and down, as well as rotate in a circular fashion to a degree. The Anti-Monitor armor does hinder full 360 rotation for the arms, but the plastic is soft enough that you can force it past if you really wanted to. There are bicep cuts that swivel and single joints at the elbow. Again, the tubing from the back of the Anti-Monitor armor that connects to the arms does hinder full 360 degree rotation. The hands can only rotate and there is no up/down wrist articulation. He has an ab-crunch that moves 30/70 degrees. He has a waist swivel and the legs move up and back. He can do the splits, but the suit jacket gets in the way just a tad. There are swivels above the knee. Again the tubing from the waste-band of the Anti-Monitor armor that connects to the  calves does hinder full 360 degree rotation. Single-Knee joints and ankle tilts complete the standard articulation. However, the armored boot guards interfere with complete motion on the ankle tilts, so there is really only very minor forward and backward motion. It pretty much makes the ankle articulation points useless.

The paint applications are well-done. While I don't care for the sculpt of the face, the black hair and eyebrows are great. The 'S' spit curls are intricately painted and not the least bit sloppy. The skin tone is great and the eyes are lifelike, which is excellent. The four-color blue and red on the body are good, and the Blue on the Anti-Monitor armor is glossy and glitters helping it stand out from the blue of the costume itself. The cape and 'S' Shield emblem have more of a dull, dingy red and while it might be nice if the reds matched, I think it works for an evil version of Superboy. The golden tubes and piping on the Anti-Monitor armor are also somewhat glossy and certainly pop and shine among the other paint applications. All in all, the paint applications are nicely applied.

The figure itself is well-made, but my personal preference would have been to have used the original Superboy mold from the Legion box set and then work your way from there. Instead, it seems like they started with the armor and the head sculpt, so the body type, scale and proportions were a complete afterthought. This was a figure I wanted to be really excited about, but is a crushing disappointment to me. We deserved better.

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