standard version first and then I was busy reviewing Solo and Jurassic Park stuff. I'm not finally getting a chance to review this exclusive black and gold variant of Ascending Knight Batman and I'll just go ahead and say that I really do think I prefer this one to the standard. I like the standard figure (I gave it an Epic rating) but the black and gold color scheme just works really, really well here. Since this figure is really just a color variant I'm reusing my review of the basic figure here with all new pictures. For those places where the paint scheme is different, I'm including new thoughts and comments in italics! That way you can just check out the original review and then skim this one if you'd like. Let's crack this one open and check it out after the break...
Height: 6 1/2 inches
jointed ankles, double hinged knees, thigh swivels, swivel/hinge hips,
ball-jointed waist, ball-jointed
mid-torso, ball jointed swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps,
double-hinged elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, and a
double ball-jointed head.
Accessories: Two interchangeable heads, seven interchangeable hands, 10
batarangs, heavy assault bat brick, wrist crossbow, grappling gun w/ 3
hooks, display base w/ peg and arm, cape display kit, and storage bag.
Non-Scalper Price: $80 dollars
* The biggest difference on this figure is the color scheme. While the standard version features a grey bodysuit with black accoutrements, this one is all black. When I see a black batsuit with a gold belt, the first thing that comes to my mind is Michael Keaton's costume from Tim Burton's 1989 Batman film. Considering that this is Mezco's take on Batman during his early years, I think the Keaton connection is fitting (maybe even Batman Begins as well) since Begins, Batman 1989, Year One, and the various early comics all seem to depict a more primitive version of the caped crusader as he is just beginning to wage his war on crime. The costume is quite impressive with differing materials and that bright gold belt adding some visual diversity to the overall design.
* The same as the standard Ascending Knight, the cape is made from a pleather like material that drapes pretty
realistically across the figure. While it isn't as nice as the amazing
capes of the Dark Knight Returns Batman figures,
it does look more like a heavy, leather cape. It can both drape behind
the figure's shoulders or over them, absolutely bringing to mind the
cover of Detective Comics #31.
* Just like the standard Ascending Knight Batman, the headsculpt is probably the piece that signals this the most as
being a First Appearance Batman and I think Mezco knocked this one out
of the park. It's definitely a different look for a modern Batman
figure, but I like it. The "ears" are insanely pointy and look pretty
menacing. The white eyes are perfect, too.
* The utility belt is also a very cool detail. It really reminds me of
the Keaton utility belt, although I'm sure other fans will see other
bits of inspiration, too. The detailed sculpting and gold color really
add a nice something extra to the overall design. It is removable via a
hidden peg underneath a pouch in the rear, just for your information. The gold color on this version seems a bit brighter and less "weathered" than the standard version, helping it to contrast more with the all black suit.
* The gloves are pretty slick with built in armored plates and super
short wrist spikes. The wrist spikes are quite shark and look rather
wicked. The wrist spiked forearm guards can rotate around the arm,
allowing you to position them however you like.
* All versions of Ascending Knight Batman come with one alternate headsculpt: Bruce
Wayne! How freaking cool! This is a great "composite" of Bruce as it looks
like many of his comic appearances as well as having traces of some of
the actors who have played the character over the years. Brilliant! He
has a very piercing gaze, doesn't he?
* As usual, the articulation is nearly flawless. The base body features
wonderful joints, most of which are hidden. Mezco has absolutely
improved the ankles, too, and now they have a great range of motion
allowing for some very deep and wide stances that look natural
* Batman comes with seven interchangeable hands that swap easily. You
get two fists, two batarang grips, two open/ gesturing palms, and a
right handed pistol grip for the crossbow and the grapnel gun.
* Like the standard figure, the Mezco exclusive Ascending Knight Batman comes with ten batarangs. Ten. That's crazy!
He doesn't have any way to hold them so I have no idea what the heck
he's going to do with all of them, but they're pretty slick looking
pieces. Keep one or two for this figure and give some to all of the
Batman figures Mattel and DC Collectibles have released over the years
with no batarangs.
* Batman includes his grapnel gun which has now become one of his most
ubiquitous gadgets. The sculpt and paintwork is incredible and it comes
with a folded up piton that fits in the barrel for when the gun is in
storage. This version features a much more intricate paint job with more bronze/ gold highlights and a black piton rather than the silver piton of the standard version.
* Like the other One:12 Collective figures, Ascending Knight Batman features a
round display base featuring his unique Batman logo. The logo is emblazoned on
the base and an off-centered peg helps to keep the figure nice and
secure when standing up. While the standard figure has a gray base with a black bat the Mezco exclusive has a black base with a gold bat.
* There is also an articulated display arm that can be inserted where the
peg is (you just have to remove the peg) and a connection piece for the posing devices for the cape. You
can get some great, secure poses here as the joints are very nice and
tight on the display bar. It can absolutely support the figure's weight
if you want to depict Bruce leaping through the air and taking out some gangster's minions.
* To keep all of the little accessories and extra hands close by when not in
use, Mezco also gives you a cool branded bag. It's just a simple plastic
bag with a Ziploc styled bag, but it's appreciated.
* It's just an image on the back of the box but, dang, does that look sweet. I love the black and gold picture of Ascending Knight Batman here. Imagine if this were a teaser poster for an upcoming Batman film. That would be amazing!
* While the Mezco One:12 Collective figures have typically come with
nice heavy 5-panel storage boxes that are easily accessible to put figures and
accessories in, the Ascending Knight Batman comes in a smaller box that feels very light and flimsy. I love the look and feel
of the standard boxes and I'm frustrated that Mezco seems to be doing away with this tradition.
original figure but it also manages to solve the two problems I had with the basic figure: The lack of trunks and the missing purple hands. This costume is so different in color than the first appearance batsuit that the lack of purple gloves isn't even noticed, nor are trunks needed. It's a great sleek, clean, imposing look that draws the best elements from multiple "early" Batman stories. I'm not planning on picking up any more Ascending Knight Batman figures as I'm pretty sure this one is my favorite. Epic.
For more Batman reviews, check out the Dark Knight Gallery where I have dozens posted.
For more One:12 Collective: DC Universe reviews, check out the following:
Armored Batman: Batman V. Superman (Convention Exclusive)
Batman: Ascending Knight
Batman: Batman V. Superman
Batman and Mutant Leader (SDCC Exclusive)
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns (PX Previews Exclusive)
Harley Quinn (Suicide Squad)
Knightmare Batman: Batman V. Superman
Superman: Red Son
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