Note: Like the Batman Retrospect I just did, this review for the Mafex Dawn of Justice Superman was written over a year ago, and my photography game was even less on point back then. I apologize.
Remember that Movie Master’s 1:12 scale figure for the Man of Steel movie a few years back that looked so awesome in presale photographs? Remember how you got it in your hand finally and it looked like they sculpted Steve Buscemi’s face accidentally?
This isn’t like that. It’s considerably better. However, at this point I have to guess that Henry Cavil has a hard to sculpt face. Maybe I haven’t had decades to remember every chiseled line on his kisser like I have Ben Affleck.
Whatever the reason is, I just don’t quite see him on the figure. It isn’t a bad sculpt. In fact, it’s quite good. However, it doesn’t scream “E’llo mate, I’m Henry Cavill!” to me.
Man, how about that English accent? I’m quite bi-lingual for a “yank.”
This isn’t an issue unique to the Mafex figure. I also had a hard time seeing him in the Mezco pre-sale photos and the final release. They’re both close, but not quite there. Maybe they picked Cavill because, while he’s a handsome fellow, he also blends in as “ordinary.” Or… maybe I should stop fixating on it so much? I can say that both of my Hot Toys Henry Cavill Supermen look dead on, but the scale is larger and thus easier to work with for the artist.
“But Darian, these are all digital prints now, they just have to scale it down in their software!”
This line of figures doesn’t look to be digitally printed as they lack that dot-matrix look we see on others that do have it.
I’m all about the “benefit of the doubt.” I wouldn’t have made it through high school or my first marriage without it.
With all that said, it doesn’t look bad at all.
It has a standard Mafex stand which I am thankful for (if Mafex and Figma can pack stands with their figures, why can’t Figuarts? Oh, that’s right, then we wouldn’t buy the Bandai stands) and the cape, like Batman, has a thin wire for limited poseability. However, UNLIKE the Batman’s cape, the wire is only at the bottom of the cape. If used correctly though, it looks impressive.
Much like the Mafex Batman, the figure’s costume is a really good replica. It has weight to it and bends in all the right places. More specifically, we have a REALLY good neck joint, to capture the “looking straight ahead whilst leaping a tall building in a single bound” head angle.
We have neck pivot, torso crunch (like Batman, Medicom did a wonderful job of keeping the sculpt vibrant and alive all through the crunch/expansion of the torso), double jointed elbows, great hip movement, double jointed knees, super smooth wrist articulation, ankle articulation with the right amount of pivot. One area where this figure is better than the Batman from the same line is in the shoulder area. If you take a look at the picture, he can bring his arms up until parallel (man, am I so glad I have spell check for that word) with the floor. It’s a slight bit of change, but it makes an amazing amount of difference in my eyes. I will note though, the joints felt kind of loose to me. Fortunately, a year later they have not gotten worse.
The shoulder thing is good because when it comes to accessories, poor Kal-El got the shaft again. He has a set of punching hands, he has some flat palmed hands (for the iconic “lifting things up” pose) and a set of… almost flat palmed hands, only, less flat, I guess? Maybe those are the “You got mad in Superman Returns because I didn’t do any fighting and then you got mad when two aliens fought in Man of Steel and destroyed most of the east coast… what in God’s name do you want from me” hands?
However, the most perplexing accessory for the Mafex Dawn of Justice Superman is another head, only with no pupils. Just white orbs. Is this a mistake from the factory? Should they be filled with heat vision? Both Mezco Supermen coming up have heat vision eyes as did the Figuarts Injustice Superman, so it can be done. Seems like a no-brainer. As is, the only thing I can imagine for these eyes are maybe his X-ray eyes? Or his Microscopic Vision eyes? Nothing says “action feature” like “REALLY looking at stuff!” I’ll put him right next to my Cyclops figure with no ruby quartz lenses and his eyes closed. Maybe grab a Professor X off of eBay and just have an “inaction” shelf.
That’s what Supes has… 3 sets of hands total and a perplexing extra head, for the same price as the Batman who has pretty much everything except Alfred. If I allow my mind to wander for a moment, besides a heat vision filled set of eyes, we could have used a Fortress of Solitude key, one of those robots who can’t tell the difference between a Kryptonian and a clearly off his meds Lex Luthor, a Krypto from the first movie (yes, I know he wasn’t Krypto, but it’s my daydream), the city of Kandor, a metal S-shield with metallic bullets that we could bounce off of as an effect, the ship he came to earth with, pictures of his mom being tortured by bi-polar Lex… I could go on and on. We didn’t. I guess we play with… er… stage, the Superman figure we got, not the figure we want.
Both heads have a rather neutral expression, with the white orbed extra head having a more aggressive neutral expression. Yes, I know that didn’t make sense.
In conclusion, the Mafex Dawn of Justice Superman is a very nice figure with some perplexing accessory decisions. I’m ok with my purchase. Just not thrilled. I suppose it could have been the Multiverse version of the same figure. I always wanted a toy tumor.
If you want him, you don’t have to bother putting on pants to go get him, you can just go here:
Feel free to comment below!