Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Action Figure Review: Batman Beyond from Total Heroes Ultra by Mattel

 I'm not sure what the problem is but Mattel just doesn't seem like they can keep their kid focused DC lines going. Take Total Heroes: It's supposed to be a kid friendly, under $10 DC Comics based line. Did stores even stock these? I saw one or two sitting around every now and then but it didn't seem like Mattel really pushed the line at all. While Hasbro's Marvel Superhero Mashers are going strong, Mattel can't even seem to really sell a Batman line. While fans really showed a lot of hate for this line early on (it kind of took the place of the various DC/ Batman Unlimited lines) overtime they seem to have just forgotten about it (as did Mattel). The figures weren't bad but there wasn't much variety. The most exciting things to come out of the line were from the Total Heroes Ultra subset: Multiple heads, piles of cool accessories, and some great character choices. Guess where these were sold? Only on Mattycollector, because you know that's where the kiddies shop. Anyways, when I picked up my SDCC Exclusive Rotar and Twistoid I also grabbed this Batman Begins set. The only Batman Begins figures I own are the two from DC Universe Classics so I wanted to add another. This is a cool set and is definitely worth checking out regardless of your thoughts on the Total Heroes line. Want a closer look at the Batman of the Future? Then join me after the break...

The Facts:

Height: 6 1/2 inches

Articulation: Hinged ankles, hinged knees, swivel/hinge hips, swivel waist, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel/hinge elbows, swivel wrists, a hinged neck, and a ball jointed head.

Accessories: Glider pack, 4 batarangs, 6 interchangeable hands (2 grips, 2 fists, and 2 flat palms), 3 swappable portraits (old Bruce Wayne, Terry McGinnis, and masked head), and Micron minifigure.

Non-Scalper Price: $20
 The Positives:

*While he's not as articulated as your average Marvel Legends or DC Universe Classics figure, the articulation is well above many of the toys on the mass market shelves today. The head and arms have a fair range of motion and the legs aren't terrible, either. Everything feels sturdy and well put together.

 * The Batman Beyond batsuit doesn't look bad in this style. It's not as sleek as some fans might expect, but it does fit the Total Heroes aesthetic. The Batman head looks really nice; I love the ferocity that such a simple mask projects. The belt and gauntlet blades are perfect and nicely capture the unique aspects of this particular batsuit.

 *It's not a perfect match to the source material but I do like that Terry/Bruce comes with an optional glider back. We never got one in DC Universe Classics. The piece is rather plain but the plastic is sturdy and does a nice job of snapping on securely.

*Batman comes with four Batarangs! Four! Typically I'd expect Mattel to call a Batman figure with one Batarang "Deluxe" so I'm amazed we got four. These are really nice and feature red highlights to boot. Schnazzy!

* Want to depict Bruce or Terry just casually hanging around? Then give them this Batman mask. It fits in their hands and looks like a rubbery mask just dangling around. It's a really cool accessory.

 *Of course, if you want to use the rubber mask piece you need to have an unmasked head. First up is the most well known wearer of this suit, Mr. Terry McGinnis. This is a pretty nice stylized headsculpt of Terry that fits in well with the aesthetic of the line. The heads easily swap on and off.

* My favorite headsculpt, however, is the aged Bruce Wayne headsculpt. This is not the old Bruce Wayne who mentors Terry but the aging Bruce Wayne of the show's pilot episode. It's a really cool headsculpt to have and captures the feel of the animated series' Bruce Wayne design.

*While I wish we'd gotten Ace instead, the set does come with a cool minifigure of Micron, the successor to the Atom in the future Justice League. Micron stands around 2 1/4 inches tall. Micron is not articulated but does have an excellent paint job.

The Negatives:
*I really like that this figure comes with three sets of interchangeable hands. Unfortunately, they fall off really easily. Simply moving the figure or putting an accessory in Batman's hand is enough to cause one of the wrists to pop out of the socket. I'm not sure if it's that the holes are too large or the pegs too small (maybe both!) but I'm really disappointed.


   I love this set. My only real complaint is the hands coming loose, which can be rectified with a bit of glue or something to build up the pegs. For $20 this set is actually quite a bargain considering all of the cool stuff you get with it (and how often can you call anything sold on MattyCollector a bargain?). What's sad is that Total Heroes seems to have faded away. A set like this is what should have been on retail shelves. There's so much awesomeness and play value here and the card art is really cool and captivating. This is a Great set; it's just too bad that the target audience never got a chance to beg their parents for this at retail!

I also reviewed the Total Heroes Batman way back in early 2014, along with plenty of other Batman figures:

Lego: DC Superheroes (2012)
Arkham Asylum Breakout
Batman: Man-Bat Attack
Batman: The Riddler Chase

Batman by Mattel
Arctic Shield Batman

Batman by NECA
1/4 Scale Michael Keaton Batman

Batman Animated by DC Collectibles
The New Batman Adventures

Batman: Arkham Origins by DC Collectibles

Batman: Classic TV Series by Mattel
Surf's Up Batman

Batman: Classic TV Series Bendables by NJ Croce

 Batman: Power Attack  by Mattel
"Blast and Battle" Batcave 

 Batman Unlimited by Mattel
Beware the Batman
The Dark Knight Returns Batman
Planet-X Batman
Vampire Batman

 DC Comics Unlimited by Mattel
Injustice Batman

 Legends of Batman by Kenner
Cyborg Batman
Dark Rider Batman
Dark Warrior Batman
Deluxe Flightpak Batman
Deluxe Silver Knight Batman
Egyptian Batman & Egyptian Catwoman
Gladiator Batman
Knightsend Batman
Pirate Batman and Pirate Two-Face
Samurai Batman
Ultra Armor Batman
Viking Batman

Young Justice: Invasion by Mattel


  1. I really jumped on this line, I tell ya. I totally understand why the fans didn't like it, but I had fell out of love with DC Universe (since I couldn't find a good chunk of it). This was just the difference I needed! It started everything over again, and I friggin' love a good animated look.

    And speaking of animated: WOW this one looks good! He's my top favorite out of all of them, honestly. Closest you can get to the look from the show without straight-up buying one of the old figures. Sorry to hear about the hands, though! The hands on mine stay on just fine, so it might have been a fluke (or mine was).

    1. Do you own most or all of these, Alexx? Personally, I just didn't feel the line had enough variety to it and I was really skeptical about Mattel supporting it.

    2. I own a small portion. I liked them enough on a simple level - they are basic and all easily fit into one aesthetic. They felt like a toyline for younger kids (as compared to DC Universe) but Mattel didn't really market it correctly. As you stated in the review: I have NO idea why these deluxe figures weren't sold in stores. I mean COME ON, they were the best ones! I even ended up with the fire guy - I barely know who he is! He just ended up so cool.

      In general, I see why people didn't like them, but as a guy who didn't get many DC Universe figures (partly because I couldn't find them) I feel like this was a neat and simple fresh start that Mattel bungled.

  2. I love this figure. I recently picked up the Hawkman figure from the line, because Hawkman tends to be the harbinger of a line's end and I have a post planned with a handful of line-killing Hawkmen I have. Anyways, there's actually a Wonder Woman for this line that is supposedly hitting the rare retail locations these exist (I've seen them at Sears and Kmart for the most part.)

    1. Are you saying that Hawkman is the Ted McGinley of DC action figures?

  3. I should clarify, I've seen the Total Heroes figures predominantly at Sears and Kmart.. I have yet to see Wonder Woman at retail.


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