Monday, March 11, 2024

Action Figure Review: Nightwing (Batman: Knightfall) from DC Multiverse by McFarlane Toys


   I'd been looking for the Knightfall version of Nightwing for around a month, so I was quite glad when I found him at a Gamestop while out and about the weekend before last. With my Pro membership discount, my monthly $5 bonus, and my bonus points, I got him for far less than the $19.99 standard price. Knightfall is definitely one of my favorite Batman stories of all time, possibly my very favorite, and I'm really enjoying how McFarlane is filling out the roster little by little. Yes, I'd like them to move faster, sure, but they're at least putting out figures somewhat consistently. This outfit first appeared in 1992 as an upgrade/ replacement for the classic "Disco Suit" look, so it was Dick Grayson's new look right when Vengeance of Bane, Sword of Azrael, and Prelude to Knightfall were all beginning. Ultimately, it only lasted around three years, so it's definitely tied in with the Knightfall era of the early to mid 1990s. McFarlane Toys has made quite a few figures of Dick in various Nightwing outfits, so it's clear he must be a brisk seller on the shelves. Interestingly, this one shares a body not with any of those previous figures but with the classic version of Ted Kord as the Blue Beetle. How'd that turn out? Well, not as well as I'd hoped. Let's take a look at the Knightfall version of Nightwing after the break...

The Facts:

Height: 7 inches

Articulation: Hinged toes, double hinged knees, swivel thighs, swivel/hinge hips, balljointed waist, balljointed mid torso, swivel/hinge shoulders w/ ballsockets, bicep swivels, double hinged elbows, double swivel/ hinge wrists, and a barbell jointed neck.
Accessories: Six swappable hands, collectible card, and display stand.
Non-Scalper Price: $20-$23 dollars

The Positives:

* At a glance, I do like the look of the figure. The colors of Nightwing's costume changed a bit from artist to artist, so sometimes his outfit was either a brighter or darker blue with details that were either more yellow or gold. McFarlane went bright here and I think it works. Nightwing's outfit is definitely designed to stand out. While so many DC Multiverse figures get unique sculpts (yes, those unique sculpts get lots of repaints, but generally it's a repaint intended to be the same character), Nightwing shares his with the Target exclusive Blue Beetle figure. It's not a bad choice for the build as it's not a massively bulky body, but it's not as slender as later Nightwing designs would be. Height wise, it's in line with most other Nightwing figures, so this Dick still comes in at around 7 inches. The belt is unique to this figure, though, and is permanently attached to Dicks' waist piece. It's a solid design with multiple pouches and a stylized bird logo on the buckle. 

* Sometimes Nightwing had a mullet during this era (that was more socially acceptable in the early 1990s) while at other times he was sporting a ponytail. McFarlane went with the ponytail, which was probably the right choice. Can I just say, aren't we glad that Batman didn't go through a trendy period like this where he had some sort of unusual and hyper trendy haircut? Bruce is always just classically stylish. Anyways, Nightwing has a good portrait with a stylized domino mask and a bit of a smirk. 

* The articulation is really good and allows for plenty of poses when taking pictures of Dick. If you're at all familiar with the DC Multiverse figures, you'll know what to expect. The articulation is tight and solid and he's pretty fun to play around with. As a former circus performer and an all around acrobat, Dick Grayson is an athletic guy, so you'll have plenty of excuses to mess around with Dick and put him in breathtaking poses. Nightwing just looks great battling in any situation!

* Nightwing has six swappable hands, five of which are standard hands: A pair of fists, a gripping right hand, a left pistol grip, and an open paled left hand with fingers splayed wide. They swap out easily and give you a few nice options posing. 

* The sixth hand has a permanently attached throwing disc with the Nightwing logo on it. Dick used these before switching to the wingdings. It's a neat extra that's unique to this figure and it makes for some more interesting poses.

* Of course, Dick Grayson as Nightwing comes with the combination of a collectible card and a display stand for keeping your figure standing up straight and tall. Or taking wild and crazy poses. The choice is yours. 

The Negatives:

* I actually have quite a few problems with this figure, the first being the gold logo across his chest. McFarlane interpreted the gold crest (which is yellow here) as being a detail just printed on the suit. It really is more like a mantle or a set of set of shoulder pads. In a lot of images you can even see the back of the chest piece when Nightwing's arm is raised. Look at the image on the collectible card included with the figure for an example. This just really misses the mark in my book. 

* From the back you can see two things. First, the painted on mantle/ shield/ crest doesn't mesh well with the ballsocket covers here. The ballsocket covers just look terrible here. Second, there's a lot of paint slop. You can see it on the right side of the mantle but it's also present on the neck and a few other random places like the boots.

* Lastly, it seems really tacky to have painted on boot cuffs that don't match the sculpted on boot cuffs. It's just a weird choice. 
   I'm not impressed with this figure, and most of it has to do with the reuse of a base body. It just doesn't work for this costume. Maybe if there were more base bodies to choose from, but the mantle/ crest/ shield on Nightwing's chest is terribly executed and really makes a mess of the outfit. Mix that in with the weird boot cuffs and the paint slop and you've got a figure that has a real mix of good and bad. He gets an Eh and a 1/2 from me. If you really want to collect the Knightfall lineup or need this version of Dick Grayson in your collection, he might fill in a gap (the articulation and headsculpt are well done), but he's just not a figure I can strongly recommend. I was really looking forward to this version of Nightwing and I'm incredibly disappointed with how he turned out. I know McFarlane does release lots of repaints (multiple colors, Jokerized variants, black light variants, etc.), but that's always seemed like a way to help justify unique molds. Nightwing feels like corners were really cut. 

 If you're looking for more reviews of Dick Grayson as Robin, Batman, or Nightwing, I've also reviewed the DC Multiverse Nightwing (Titans), Mattel's DC Comics Multiverse Dick Grayson Batman, the Lego Batman: Man-Bat Attack which includes Nightwing, the Kenner Legends of Batman Nightwing, the DC Icons Hush Nightwing, the New 52 Nightwing, the McFarlane Super Powers Nightwing, the Jada Nano Metalfigs DC103 Nightwing, and Robin from the Teen Titans Go! To the Movies line.

For more DC Multiverse reviews check out the following:
Harley Quinn (The Suicide Squad)
Impulse (Flash War)
The Joker- Bank Robber (The Dark Knight)
The Joker (The Dark Knight Rises) Jokerized
The Joker (Infinite Frontier)
The Joker- Sonar Vision (The Dark Knight)
Justice Buster (Batman: Endgame)
Kalibak (The Darkseid War)
Man-Bat (DC Rebirth)
Mister Freeze (Victor Fries)
Nekron (Blackest Night)
Nightwing (Titans)
Project Superman (Flashpoint)
Raven (Titans)
The Riddler (Arkham City)
The Riddler (DC Classic)
Robin (DC vs. Vampires)
Robin- Tim Drake (Robin: Reborn)
Scarecrow (The Dark Knight Rises) Jokerized
Scarecrow (The Dark Knight Trilogy)
The Signal Duke Thomas
Superman (Black Adam) Black & White Accent Edition
Superman (Superman: Lois and Clark)
Superman Vs. Doomsday
Two-Face (The Dark Knight Trilogy)
Two-Face as Batman (Batman: Reborn)


  1. It fails hard at the main feature of this costume. It doesn't work just painted on. And those gaps of it between the chest and the shoulders really just ruin the flow. Add to that the boots too and it's a very lazy, poorly executed figure of an underrated Nightwing look.

    1. It does. This one was a real miss. I'm surprised by how disappointing he turned out to be.

    2. It is disappointing, although I don't think it should be too hard for someone to create a 3-printed version of the separate "mantle" like the one that the Legends of Batman Nightwing had...

  2. Cool looking costume. Have never seen this version of him before. Based on Carnivius' comments above, execution is lacking. Neat looking costume design nonetheless.

    1. This was Nightwing's second costume. The first was the "disco suit" with the plunging neckline and high collar that he wore throughout the late 1980s as part of the Teen Titans. This replaced it, retaining the colors but tightening things up to look sleeker and less flamboyant. Dick started wearing this one in 1992 and swapped around 1994 or 1995 when he got this own title. That's when he went to a version of the black suit with the blue bird/ V shaped logo which has had so many small variants over the years.

      Because of the prominence of Nightfall, it feels like Nightwing had this for longer than he did. It showed up on so much promotional material and was included in Kenner's Legends of Batman line.

  3. "Sometimes Nightwing had a mullet during this era (that was more socially acceptable in the early 1990s)"

    Interestingly, mullets appear to be making a comeback, at least on 8-12-year-old boys.

    1. Oh my gosh, they totally are, aren't they? I could not believe how many mullets we saw on kids that age at a theme par we visited last year and at Universal Studios when we went last spring. We also went to a collegiate summer league baseball game last summer and, wow, it was like about a third of the players were part of the Billy Ray Cyrus fan club.


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