Review: Imaginext Superfriends Batman
Today's review is presented in memory of Bruce Wayne: 1939-2009. You will be missed.*
* Until you come back from the dead.
If you've been visiting The Clearance Bin regularly, you probably remember the review of the Imaginext Superman figure which came packaged with a Krypto. He was a present from my wife, who figured I'd enjoy him.
Well, good taste runs in the family: her brother picked me up a Batman figure from the same line.
Once again, this is a toy in a very traditional sense of the word. It's intended for kids as young as three and as old as eight. But if I cared about "recommended ages" I wouldn't be collecting toys at all.
I believe the "official" name for this is a DC Superfriends: Imaginext Batman, though I'm not 100% sure that's the correct order. It's made by Fisher Price and is available, well, everywhere.
Appearance: 7 out of 10
Batman is a little better than Superman, though he's not quite a nice as Krypto. Actually, while I'm sure it wasn't intentional, there's something genuinely creepy about this version of Bats. Clearly the intent was to create a "friendly" Batman, but the outfit, even when colored blue, resists that image. Sure, you can look at that smile and think he's glad to be among friends, but it's also easy to imagine him gleefully preparing to break some gangster's leg. The batsuit has a tendency of transforming cheerful into demonic, and the end effect is slightly reminiscent of Frank Miller's version of the character.
All of that is a convoluted way of saying I like the design.
Batman has a few advantages over Clark. The first is that he's a little less shiny. I don't know whether it's the plastic or the paint, but something isn't as reflective, which was the biggest problem Clark had visually.
Once again, they've given Batman a cloth cape. Unlike Superman, his is scalloped on the bottom edge, a detail I'm glad Fisher Price remembered to include. In addition, the sculpted cowl where the cape meets the mask looks really nice here.
I'm giving Batman a respectable seven out of ten for appearance.
Packaging and Extras: +1
Batman is packaged the same way as Clark. These are intended to catch the attention of kids, get them to play with the toys in the store, and be as difficult as possible to pry out of their hands:
Like Superman, Batman comes with a couple of accessories. Unlike Superman, his actually work with the figure.
Along with the Caped Crusader, you get a jet pack and a grapple gun. Lets tackle the jet pack first.
Play and Display: ----
As far as articulation is concerned, you get very little. He has the same joints as Superman: ball shoulders and legs that move together on a pin. It's a lot less than you want, but at least you can get a few poses out of him. If the head moved you'd have a lot more options open.
Where this Batman shines is in the accessories. By including or omitting these, you open up a lot of possibilities. The jet pack in particular should be of interest to the collector.
Oh, and - once again - his grapple gun actually works. It may not mean much for collectors, but the kids out there will love it.
The way I see it, Batman deserves a bonus point for either the last section or this one - not both. What's versatile about him are his accessories: the articulation itself is more or less disappointing. So, rather than start giving "half points", I put the bonus point under extras.
Price Tag and Final Analysis: 8/10
This is a good toy, and I like having it side by side with Superman. Retail price seems to be around $8, which is more than this guy's worth. But these are finding their way into sales and clearance - if you were lucky you might even have found these at a KB before they went under.
At five bucks or less, you should feel pretty good about picking up this figure. I don't know that he's quite the bargain Superman is at that price, though, since Kal-El came with Krypto, but it's definitely still worth the money.
If you've got comments or feedback, leave me a message at The Middle Room.