Blind Box Monday

So today we’re continuing the saga of the Lil DC Bombshells from last week.

The store where I got these is in the mall that houses my favorite local movie theatre, so I tend to go in every time I go to a movie, yeah?  Variant Poison Ivy was bought right before a movie, and the next time I went to see a movie, I picked up another of those little cans…

…and I ended up with variant coloring Catwoman!

Seriously, what are the odds?  Twice in a row!

At least this time the variant was turning her outfit from black to bronze, so it looked more, y’know, normal.  But it did make me wonder if that store had somehow gotten a shipment that was nothing but variants. 😛

There’s still more to the story (not too much more), but next week I have something else I want to show you. 😀  (I just got it today (ahem, uh, last Wednesday) and I’m still very pumped about it, but I wanted to post this one first.)

The Blind Box gallery is here.

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Blind Box Monday

Rather than keep going through the rest of the Tokidoki Barbie Blind Box figures, I thought a little change of pace.  I came across these at a local store quite a while ago and immediately had to get one.

Yup, they come in an actual metal can.  The word you can’t quite read because of the curve is “Lil,” btw, making them the “Lil DC Comics Bombshells”…which sort of defeats the original purpose of the ’40s-style pinup art, but I’m not complaining! 😀

Anyway, here’s the back, showing the various figures in the line.

I think right off the bat the first one I was like “ooh, I want that one!” was Hawkgirl, because I hate the fact that her full-size statuette is blowing a bubble with bubblegum.  (Seriously, what’s up with that?  I mean, I wouldn’t buy it anyway, because way too expensive, but the bubblegum really ruins the look.)

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Bumblebee

Some of you may have seen this one coming. 😀  I had hoped Target would put these girls on sale, but they kept on not doing so.  (And so far they seem to have an exclusive on the whole line.  Probably Mattel just signed a deal with them to give it to them a month or so in advance of everyone else.)  However, even without a sale, they seem to have trouble keeping them on the shelves:  there were only two there when I picked up Bumblebee, just her and Poison Ivy.  I’m glad they’re selling well. 🙂

Bumblebee 1

Since she’s in the same line — and I’m a little pressed for time — I won’t be giving Bumblebee here the same full review treatment that I gave Harley Quinn.

I have to admit that I’d never heard of Bumblebee before seeing this doll line…which basically means that if she had an appearance on Justice League, I either missed the episode or totally forgot about it.  (Yup.  Not a comics person.)  But the important thing here is that she’s a nice-looking doll, and they were able to add an African-American to the doll line.

Bumblebee 2

She’s got a really nice character portrait, but there are some significant discrepancies between the portrait and the doll, which I’ll refer back to from time to time.

Bumblebee 3

Again, I have issues with this text.  If all her “powers” come from her suit, then she has no actual powers, and that shouldn’t be there.  Or rather, does she make her own tech?  (The “Favorite Class” part certainly implies that she does.)  If so, shouldn’t that be listed as her power?  Sure, it’s not a super power in the traditional sense, but if they were doing one of these for Tony Stark, they’d sure put “supergenius” under his list of powers!  (Yeah, I know it’s a different company.  I just wanted an example everyone would know.  Especially one I would know.)  Of course, as my brother pointed out, because this doll line is coming out after Ant-man, it’s now going to seem to a lot of people like Bumblebee is ripping off the Wasp, even though that’s not what’s going on.

Looking at the promotional photos used of the other dolls, I’m noticing their promotional version of Harley has much less hair.  And possibly longer shorts.  But the much less hair is the prominent thing…and I’m glad they changed that for the production doll.  That looks bad.

Bumblebee 4

So, here she is out of the package.  And as it proudly proclaimed, she can stand on her own…but her wings and hair tip her balance in odd ways, so it’s not always easy to get her to balance.  (She’s also badly lit, but that’s my fault. 😛 )

Bumblebee 5

She’s got a pretty face — which my photos do not do justice to — but I have to admit that I’d be a little more satisfied with her if she had a happier smile like the one on the box art.

Bumblebee 7

Her wrist things look rather different from the illustration.  The actual product has a design that looks rather like the patterning on her wing pack (which you’ll see shortly) whereas the illustration’s design looks like an actual bee.   I think I like the illustration’s version better, personally, but perhaps this is actually more appropriate.  (BTW, I know it looks like there’s some kind of damage to the plastic in her arm, but there really isn’t.  It’s just a lighting issue.  It was not a good day for doll photography, but I was really down to the wire on this one.)

Bumblebee 9

She has a really pretty (yet ethnically inappropriate) mane of neatly curled hair which is completely soft and shows no evidence of styling products.  It does interfere with her wings something awful, though.  I really like the streaks of different shades.

Bumblebee 10

On about a third of her head, she has molded braids instead of rooted hair.  I’m not sure why exactly, but it’s certainly distinctive, and it does look good…although it might have looked better if they had flocked the braids, the way they flock the shaved part of Venus McFlytrap’s head.  (And sometimes Clawdeen Wolf also has some flocked areas where she’s shaved part of her hair off.)  It’s not a big deal, but the light reflecting off the paint does rather damage the illusion that it’s actually hair.  (Maybe matte paint would have been better?)

Bumblebee 11

And here’s the wing pack I mentioned earlier.  The wings cannot move at all.  That’s somewhat disappointing; I’ve seen dolls with wings like this before, ones that did let you move the wings up and down.  Given that the wings interfere with her hair, letting you move the wings would have been a really good idea, since they wouldn’t interfere so much in a lower position.  I have an unpleasant feeling that whoever decided not to make the wings move thought that little girls would be removing the wing pack altogether, because “girls don’t play superhero” and so they’d just be treating them as ordinary dolls.  I think it’s safe to say that that person would be wrong about most girls.   [EDIT:  it finally occurred to me to take off her wing pack and then put it back on her upside down.  Now her wings and hair aren’t fighting anymore, and it looks a bit more bee-like in the process…with the down side that now some positions for her arms are cut off by her wings.]

Bumblebee 12

She can’t do the superhero landing pose.  Come on, Mattel!  You should have known that a flying hero would need to do this pose!  I’ve got Made-to-Move Barbies:  I know you can achieve a doll who can do this pose, and can make it cheaply, too!

Bumblebee 13

Moving on to costume details, here’s a shot of her shirt.  You’ll notice, if you scroll back up, that the illustration has two black hexagons on the front of the shirt, which are absent from the doll.  (Also, the illustration is much bustier.  That part I’m glad they changed.)  I like the beehive patterning on the side panel of the shirt, but I wish the front material would behave a little better.  (It’s a nice looking material when it’s not crumpling, wrinkling and pouching out, though.)

Bumblebee 14

And one last photo to show the hexagons on her leggings, to represent the cells in a beehive.  (Or to show that she’s into .hack.  Either works for me.)  You’ll notice that her shoes are nothing like Harley’s, which is good:  at least they didn’t skimp by giving them all the same shoes…though looking at the photos on the back of the box, Supergirl and Batgirl may have the same shoes.  (Hard to tell for sure.  Could be the same, could be different yet similar.  Everyone else’s are very different from each other, though.)

Now, that’s all I have to say in “B is for Bumblebee,” but I have something else to share, toy-related news connected to another “B” superheroine…also with an insect theme.

Taken at Target Apr 01, 10 44 18 PM

Someone learned their lesson from the disaster that was the merchandising for Avengers:  Age of Ultron, and the big figure set that isn’t actually for Captain America:  Civil War (even though it obviously is) includes Natasha Romanov, AKA Black Widow. 😀  I, personally, still won’t be buying the figures, ’cause they look kind of crappy, but I’m an adult collector.  I’m sure kids will be buying them in droves, and I’m glad they finally got their act together and included a heroine as well as the heroes.

I realize that is probably not news to most people — I’m sure the Internet at large has been talking about it already — but it was news to me when I saw the set at Target the other day when I was buying Bumblebee, so I wanted to share, in case there were others who hadn’t heard yet.

Anyway, the gallery for this post is here.  See you Monday for C!  (I’ll give you two hints:  one, you will not see that one coming, and two, it’s definitely one of my favorites for the month.  Okay, those actually probably don’t count as hints.)

DC Super Hero Girls Harley Quinn

I mentioned a few days ago that I found an unexpected doll at Target, which I was very excited about, right?  Well, this is her.

Harley 1

Now, this wasn’t entirely unexpected.  I’d seen promotional artwork of the doll line some time ago…though I admit I had totally forgotten about it until I saw the dolls in person.  (And I don’t think the promotional artwork I saw included Harley.)  I couldn’t resist getting Harley, because I love the character, though I still think of her as looking like this:

(More or less.)
(More or less.)

Despite that it’s not the look I’m used to for Harley, I couldn’t resist this adorable-yet-slightly-psychotic face:

Yeah, I know, it should be the face on the doll I couldn't resist, not the promo art...
Yeah, I know, it should be the face on the doll I couldn’t resist, not the promo art…

Anyway, this is a line of superheroine dolls aimed at girls, giving DC a real edge over Marvel, whose toy department is being run by an utter moron who thinks it’s still the worst part of the 1980s.  (Or whatever it is that he’s thinking.  My brother says Disney’s trying to oust him, but apparently they’re not working fast enough.)  Of course, that being said, it’s still not quite ideal.

Back of the box
Back of the box

I’ll want to cover the different parts of the back of the box in some detail, but let me start by saying that it’s a high school setting (um, could Disney sue them for ripping off Sky High here?) and that Mattel — at least in the packaging — is giving it the same basic treatment as it gives Monster High and Ever After High.  (In fact, those lines probably inspired this one in one way or another.)  My brother’s concerned about how the tie-in products (particularly the comic books) are going to go, because he’s really big into comics, particularly the DC ones, and he’s sometimes even more of a feminist than I am, so he’s very sensitive to it when the comics get things wrong regarding the heroines.  And if the comics are anything like the back of this box, he may have very good reasons to be worried.

Sorry it's a bit out of focus.
Sorry it’s a bit out of focus.

Um, “Heronomics”?  Seriously?  Lame, dudes.  Very lame.  Also, do you really want to put the word “friend” right after the word “super”?  Last time I checked, Superfriends was still somewhat of a laughing stock.  Maybe that’s changed, but…speaking of things that have changed, I — personally –am still used to thinking of Harley as being on the villain side.  I realize that’s no longer the case in the comics, but…I pretty much only know the original Harley, the one on Batman the Animated Series.

Harley 5

Yeah, I’m used to Poison Ivy being a villain, too.  Though that doll doesn’t really say “Poison Ivy” to me; she says “Leela from Sky High” to me.  (And that is so what I’m going to name her when I get her, btw.  Or was it spelled Lila?  Well, whichever…)  Anyway, since I’m already talking about the other dolls in the line, I’ve gotta say that they all look really great, except Supergirl.  Her costume actually looks worse in person than it does in the promotional photo on the box.  That collar is awful, and…I don’t even know exactly what it is else that’s wrong with it, but it just didn’t look good to me.  I won’t be getting Supergirl except on Superclearance.  (Or maybe at Tuesday Mornings.)  The others, though, looked great, even though Batgirl’s outfit is primarily a hoodie.  Wonder Woman looked terrific, with hair that’s partially black and partially about the same deep navy color as the hair on the Wonder Woman Pullip.  And I love the fact that she’s wearing pants!  I’m not familiar with the character of Bumblebee, but the doll looks very nice, and the promotional photo there doesn’t do her justice, because her head’s turned so you can’t see the lighter streak in her hair, which really adds a lot of extra character.

Okay, so now let’s move on to the text above the pictures…specifically the part that says “Super Powers”.  I’m used to Harley not having any powers, though my brother informs me that in the comics Ivy hooked her up with some enhanced speed and stuff like that.  However, the doll line is going with the original, non-powered Harley, and so they had to put in non-super “Super Powers”…but I have to dock them a lot of points for what they wrote.  Because “Expert Gymnast” and “Acrobat” are not powers!  A person is a gymnast or an acrobat.  The “power” associated with same would be “gymnastics” and “acrobatics”…no, even that wouldn’t be right, but it would at least be closer.  To really be accurate, they’d have to say something like “flexibility” or “speed” or “acrobatic prowess” would probably be the closest.  They shouldn’t have called it “Super Powers” if they couldn’t think of anything that was actually a power to write there.  Sorry if that sounds pedantic, but I was once an English major (hard as that may be to believe, given my rambling and frequently incoherent text) and sometimes these things really get under my skin.

Harley 7

Yep, done with the packaging now!  As you can see, she can sit pretty well in a chair-like setting.  But her legs are longer than Barbie’s, so I think she wouldn’t fit very well in most 1/6 scale chairs.  (Yes, I really should have tried that out before I posted this.  I knew I was forgetting to do something during the photo shoot….I forgot to get comparative pictures, too.  I’ll have to do that with the next doll I get in this line.)  Anyway, Harley has one major drawback, in that her legs are actually made of red and black plastic, rather than her having skin-colored legs and wearing red and black tights.  It’s easy to understand from a cost perspective, but it’s sort of annoying from a collector’s perspective.  (No idea how kids would react.)

Harley 9

The package loudly proclaims that the dolls can stand on their own, and indeed they can.  But in Harley’s case there are two complications.  The first, obviously, is that her mallet makes it harder for her to balance if she’s actively holding it in the air.  The second is perhaps unique to my particular doll:  one of her legs is .5 cm longer than the other.  (This will be more apparent when her shoes are off.)

Harley 10

That thing she’s standing on is actually the wooden box for a Mah Jongg set that I got at Barnes & Noble some time back.  (On clearance, I should point out.  And no, I have no idea how to actually play it.  I mostly wanted to get it because I figured the tiles might make good photography props.  This is the first time I’ve actually used one for that purpose…)  When I was getting set up for this photo shoot, the lid got a bit messed up, and wouldn’t close again because a tile was in the way.  When I saw that the tile in question was a Joker tile, I just had to use it as a prop.  After all, Harley would want to have Mr. J.’s calling card with her!

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