Eaglemoss's Batman chess set expands with two new pawns, Ventriloquist (black) & Black Bat (ironically white in spite of the name), as well as giving fans two new Marvel figurines.
One of the biggest problems with Batman's rogues gallery is that it has far too many A-list and B-list characters. It's mostly guys you'd assume would be kings, rooks, bishops, or knights but, given the sheer number of them, you have rogues like Bane and Poison Ivy relegated to the lowly role of pawn despite being significant threats. I can't tell you how refreshing it is to see a character like the Ventriloquist (Arnold Wesker) added to the line since he's one of those guys who deserves to be a pawn. Yes, he's often depicted with his own gang, but the character is as much a puppet to his alter ego as he is to his supposed cronies (who have tried to reunite him with his dummy, Scarface, so that he'd re-assume his criminal identity). Simply put, the Ventriloquist is a lovable chump and a perfect addition to the line.
For those unfamiliar with the new white pawn, Black Bat, it's apparently ex-Batgirl Cassandra Cain's latest alias. I'd much rather see some of these white pawn slots go to Gotham City police officers such as Harvey Bullock and Renee Montoya (albeit Montoya's comic role is a little muddled).
On the Marvel side (which still lacks a chess set), we first have Firelord. Galactus's former herald looks surprisingly great in this format. The character looks powerful, even godlike. Fans will no doubt appreciate that Eaglemoss gave Firelord's costume the proper detailing so the torn bits resemble wisps of flame. Danielle Moonstar (aka Mirage) wasn't nearly as lucky, as her face and expression looks something horrible. You'll also notice that her bow lacks a string. Otherwise the pose itself is halfway decent.
If I was really into collecting Eaglemoss figurines, Firelord would definitely be near the top of that list. I also have to admit liking the look of the Ventriloquist despite the actual quality seeming a little low. Given that we're currently at eight pawns for each side, only two more figurines (per color) remain. I'm hoping one will be Maxie Zeus, given his status as an iconic joke character.
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