Mattel's DCU John Constantine is boring

5:00 PM on 11.11.2012 // Scarecroodle

Neither heaven nor hell, but stuck in purgatory

Matty Collector's November sale will see the addition of John Constantine to the DC Unlimited line through its "Signature Collection" / Infinite Earths imprint. For those unfamiliar with the character, John Constantine is an occult detective who, while obscure, has a film under his belt (with an associated video game) and a substantial cult following. He's the sort of character well-known (and well-liked) by comic readers but not the general public. In short, John Constantine is exactly the sort of character whom should be appearing in this online format (unlike Poison Ivy).

That said, Constantine is a boring figure. The head-sculpt lacks the sort of character exhibited in his artwork. I blame a lot of this on Mattel trying to play things safe, as they lack the edge to do something like giving the iconic smoker a removable cigarette. The other issue is that of the trench coat, something that Mattel has shown us time and time again that they simply aren't able to do properly. Rather than just give us a body with a soft rubbery trench coat over it, it's high time that Mattel took a note from other makers and just sculpted the trench coat straight onto the character (or, at least, the upper torso of the character). Mattel has done fans no favors by going this other route, as the figure gains no functional articulation for having a soft rubbery coat.

One of the greatest shames about Mattel's online exclusive DCU figures has been their unwillingness to experiment and push the line despite having the ideal arena (a collector's specific venue) to do so. Given the increased cost of buying through Matty Collector and its effectively captive audience (courtesy of its subscription service), Mattel should be aiming to provide fans with not only the characters they wouldn't normally see at retail but also feature innovations that might otherwise seem too risky for retail.

[ Matty Collector ]

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