Sunday, January 1, 2012

Great Sculpt, Low Articulation, The Justice League Classic Icons Wave 1 Wonder Woman Figure Is More Mixed Than Amazing. (2012 FIRST REVIEW!!!!)

The Good: Great sculpt, Good accessory
The Bad: Poseability/balance issues
The Basics: Despite the exploding collectible value, the Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman figure is a little more problematic once out of the package.

My wife is a pretty awesome puzzle to me at times. She gets very upset at many of my reading choices and movie choices because of her misperception that I have a “thing” for Wonder Woman and a crush on Anne Hathaway. Neither is true; I think Wonder Woman is an awesome super hero, but that her stories are wildly erratic (very good, very bad, very few in the mediocre range) and as for Anne Hathaway, I haven’t had a crush on her since the first night I met my wife. Seriously. The puzzling aspect comes from the fact that despite her boisterous complaints about the status of characters and women who are not her in my life, my wife remains very generous when it comes to gift giving. Last year she presented me with a copy of Love And Other Drugs (reviewed here!) which is certainly not the movie to give a person you are trying to wean off Anne Hathaway! This year for the holiday, she presented me with the Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman action figure.

The Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman figure is a new sculpt of Wonder Woman in her classic – from the 1980s up – one piece costume. This represents the first DC Direct Wonder Woman figure I have in this scale since my wife and I got together. It is certainly a figure I would recommend over the Justice League Wonder Woman (reviewed here!) from over a decade ago. Unfortunately, though, it is not the ultimate Wonder Woman figure I was hoping for.

The real issue with a Wonder Woman figure in her classic outfit comes from two issues that are often hard for toy manufacturers to reconcile. Creating a Wonder Woman figure that is very articulated without making her look goofy is the primary challenge. That challenge comes from the fact that Wonder Woman is not the most overly dressed character in the DC Universe and that leaves very few places to hide joints. The more joints that are visible, the more goofy a figure is likely to look. The problem that toy manufacturers seem to be making for themselves, however, is finding a balance between the muscular and feminine when making Wonder Woman figures. There are several Wonder Woman action figures that look downright mannish in the most troubling way possible.

Fortunately, DC Direct got the look of Wonder Woman absolutely right with the Classic Icons release. Unfortunately, the articulation and balance of the Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman figure are not all they could be, robbing the figure of perfection.


The Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman figure is a 7" hard plastic representation of Wonder Woman as she appeared in the comic books. This Wonder Woman does not look at all like the stylized renditions of Wonder Woman seen on the Cartoon Network or other recent animated movies. Instead, this is the more realistic attempt at Wonder Woman from books like Gods And Mortals (reviewed here!) and beyond!

The Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman is all curves and muscles and she looks great. The hair, while comprised of the same hard plastic as the body, is straight and long. This version of Wonder Woman features such accurate sculpting that her collarbones are evident below her neck! Her legs have great muscle definition, without looking overdone, as do her arms. The sculpting is so precise that this version of Princess Diana features molded on fingernails! Even Wonder Woman’s back looks good with some muscle definition beneath her outfit on her back. This Wonder Woman even features the hook needed to attach her lasso to her side, which is a cool detail!

This is the iconic Wonder Woman with the boots, bracelets, one-piece outfit and the lasso. The coloring of the figure is absolutely amazing. The white stripe on her red boots is slightly pearlescent and her eyes are actually glossy in contrast with the rest of the figure’s matte finish! While Wonder Woman does not feature realistic depth and shading for a character that is human, she perfectly represents the coloring of a comic book character. Even her fingernails are painted, with the same shade of red as her lips!

This is a very precisely molded and colored version of Wonder Woman and if that were the only criteria by which I judged figures, this would be a perfect action figure.


The Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman comes with a two inch wide plastic stand and her lasso. This figure is oddly made in that the stand does not precisely match the figure. The generic black disc is 2” in diameter and features a single peg that fits into the hole on Wonder Woman’s right foot. Unfortunately for those who might want to pose the figure in interesting ways, the hole on her foot is too big and the peg is not all that tall. The result is that the stand does not actually support this Wonder Woman figure!

On the flip side, the lasso is a pretty cool accessory. The 10” golden cord comes wound up and one suspects the intent is for it to stay clipped on Wonder Woman’s hip. Her hands are not molded to hold it, so at best it may be tied to her wrist after it is unwound. It looks somewhat doofy when it is in that position, but that is truly the only way to play with the lasso accessory. It clips perfectly to her hip, though!


The Justice League Classic Icons Wonder Woman is a very problematic toy on the playability front. First, the figure is not incredibly balanced. Unlike Marvel figures, Wonder Woman is not topheavy because of some ridiculous bust. Actually, this figure stands great when she is flatfooted. It does not matter how her top is posed, when she is flatfooted, she is perfectly stable. Unfortunately, the moment her feet are moved even slightly out of a flatfooted position, she tips. Because the stand is so utterly ineffective, putting her on her stand does not yield significant results for posing her outside her one flatfooted pose. At best, I have gotten mine to stand in a slightly more action one foot flat on the stand, one foot slightly on the balls of her feet pose.

The Classic Icons Wonder Woman has pretty decent, though not unlimited, articulation. This Wonder Woman comes with eleven points of articulation: knees, groin socket, wrists, elbows, shoulders and head. The head is attached as a ball and socket joint, which usually allows for greater articulation of the head and a decent range of motion. Unfortunately, on this figure that is somewhat compromised as a result of the solid hair. Thus, the head barely moves two degrees in any direction! Wonder Woman’s knees and elbows feature hinge joints, but the rest are simple swivel joints. Her wrist articulation is hidden by her bracelets, which is pretty cool!


This figure seems to be one of the harder ones to find and the price on it does seem to be going up, assuming they are mint in package (mine, of course, is not). This does seem to be a good investment figure as it has been a while since Wonder Woman has been cast in this outfit and with future figures already announced that put her in newer, less popular, garb, this figure might be the last, best Wonder Woman figure for some time!


DC Direct got a lot right with this action figure and truth be told, I like it more than my objective criteria allow me to rate it. If you find it now, pick it up; it won’t be on the primary market long!

For other Wonder Woman reviews, be sure to check out my reviews of:
Justice Cheetah action figure
Wonder Woman - Season 1
Eyes Of The Gorgon


For more toy reviews, please check out my index page!

© 2012 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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