Monday, April 26, 2010

DC Universe Classics Showcase: Kryptonite Chaos

Another DCUC two-pack with DCSH re-releases! This time we have Supergirl and Lex. Necessary two-pack? Probably not, but I wanted it anyway. Some collectors have reported easy findings of this pack, but I wasn't able to even catch a trace of it when it was first released. Here's to persistence!

Is Kryptonite Chaos a hot commodity or a cold clunker? Read on to find out what I think about the pack!

This pack is exclusive to Toys "R" Us and online retailers, so there aren't that many options if you're not finding it in your area. Apparently, this pack ships with the Green Lantern and Super Enemies two-packs that were originally released in 2008 (so, that this point, we're getting a re-release of a re-release...). I missed out on the initial release of the Super Enemies pack, which includes Cyborg Superman and Mongul from the DCSH line, so it was nice to be able to pick it up, as well. I found both packs stuffed behind the Fists of Clay two-pack that's been peg-warming at the TRU in my area, which seems to be the fourth two-pack that ships with the aforementioned three (does that make sense?).

As these figures were originally part of the DCSH line, the articulation is slightly limited. Supergirl lacks the ab crunch as well as thigh cuts, although the top of her legs swivel where they join her skirt. Otherwise, her articulation is typical to the DCUC line. Lex's articulation is limited only by his suit, which eliminates the ab crunch. Instead, his torso is essentially ball-jointed. All other points of articulation are standard, although the cut join that is usually at the wrists is placed at the cuff of his gloves.

Like most re-releases, the sculpting hasn't changed much in relation to the DCSH figures. All sculpting is essentially identical with the exception of the head sculpts. Supergirl's face seems a bit wider, and Lex's has been given a more accurate and attractive sculpt.

Both figures feature slightly highlighted paint applications in relation to their true DCSH counterparts. Supergirl apparently decided to work the eye shadow and blush, which makes her look older than she probably should. Some of the coloring seems more vivid on her, as well. However, like the DCUC Black Canary, Supergirl's roots are showing through. Her hair has been given a light brown wash that was probably intended to make the strands stand out, but the wash detracts from her overall look and hair coloring.

Lex's armor has been given a rust-like wash, which makes the paint difference between the upper and lower segments of his armor even more noticeable than it was to begin with. I don't see why Mattel opted for the wash, as it doesn't add anything and is more distracting than appealing. The main issue I have with Lex is with the paint used for his eyes. The way they're painted makes him look like he's staring upward constantly. I'm not sure if this is the way he was intended to be painted or if this is just a flub with my figure. Some of the work on his armor is a bit messy, and a few of the purple inserts aren't fully painted.

Overall, however, both figures are painted quite well. There isn't much slop, and almost all of the applications are clean and precise, with the minor exception being a small spot on Supergirl's skirt and the work around her symbol, which is slightly messy.

Although Lex's gun isn't included, the pack features four different colors of Kryptonite; green, blue, red, and gold. Lex can hold the individual chunks of Kryptonite, and they can also be fitted into the gun that comes with Brainiac from the Clash in the Cosmos two-pack, which originally came with the DCSH Luthor. Why Mattel chose to pair the gun with Brainiac instead of the Wal-Mart five-pack Lex or this version I don't know. My only guess is that they wanted the Clash in the Cosmos pack to include an accessory.

The cardback shows the prototype images of the figures, which are ultimately more attractive. To some extent, I wish Mattel would've shelled out for a new head sculpt for Supergirl. The cardback image is quite nice, but the end result looks a bit more like Supergirl's grandma who put on too much makeup. The blush is reasonable, but the eye shadow is edging on amateur drag queen territory. Also, I would've preferred that the head sculpts between this Lex and the Wal-Mart five-pack matched, though most people probably won't mind the difference.

The DCUC two-packs are now priced at $30 at retail, so casual collectors or those who already have the DCSH versions of these figures might want to pass on the pack, assuming you actually find it in the first place. As I mentioned earlier, this two-pack is exclusive to TRU and online retailers. eBay prices are far too exorbitant for a pack of re-releases, if you ask me, and there aren't many listings.

If you don't have the DCSH versions of these figures, Kryptonite Chaos is a decent pick. For $30 at retail, each figure is basically $15, which is the standard price of single DCUC figures. Overall, I wanted this pack for Supergirl, and I'm satisfied with her. Though I think the makeup is too heavy, she's a nice addition to the Superman figure family. Keep in mind that this version of Lex is also available in the DC Universe vs. Masters of the Universe two-pack at Toys "R" Us, which retails for the same price as this pack, so you might want to consider that if you're only interested in Lex.

Pleased? Yes, but I think the pack could have been better. Supergirl is a welcomed figure for my collection, but releasing this version of Lex in two different packs seems like a misstep. I would've preferred Lex in a business suit to this look, but he's still a solid figure. As I never obtained the DCSH versions of these figures, I'm happy with the purchase.

Comments? Questions? Personal threats? Feel free to drop me a comment, tweet, or email, if you are so inclined.


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