The Good: Generally good sculpt, Basic coloring, Collectible value
The Bad: Obvious seam, Mediocre balance, Flesh coloring is incredibly simple
The Basics: The San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament is the same sculpt as the common ornament with a variant color scheme that proves Hallmark has little regard for DC Comics fans.
With its release on DVD and Blu-Ray, I find myself once again considering Man Of Steel. At this time of year, I also find myself considering any number of Hallmark ornaments that I simply had not gotten around to reviewing yet and one of the most obvious ones was the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel Hallmark ornament. Arguably, this one ended up late in the review queue because it is identical to the common release Man Of Steel ornament (reviewed here!), except in its coloring. Hallmark has an unfortunate track record in recent years for every fandom but Star Wars; only Star Wars fans are treated to unique sculpts for their exclusive ornaments. Star Trek fans this year were given a cheap recoloring of the U.S.S. Kelvin ornament (the “battle damaged” U.S.S. Kelvin ornament is reviewed here!) and the Battlestar Galactica ornament a few years back was a gold casting (reviewed here!) of the prior year’s silver Cylon! So, it is pretty unsurprising that the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament is just the common-release ornament in a different color, in this case the black outfit from the film.
Hallmark and DC created an ornament that is evocative of the film persona of Henry Cavill as Superman for the Man Of Steel ornament and reused it for the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive variant. Using finalized images from Man Of Steel (reviewed here!), Hallmark sculpted a very basic Superman ornament with only a general similarity to Henry Cavill. While the ornament features molded details and general coloring that helps indicate this is supposed to be the black costume seen in Man Of Steel, the facial sculpt does not look at all like Henry Cavill, any more than the common release version of the ornament did.
The San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament faithfully presents Superman in his black and gray Kryptonian underarmor costume. This is the Superman in his textured black suit, ornamented only with the gray “S” symbol on the chest and the iconic cape in black. The ornament, released at the San Diego Comic Con in 2013, is fair for an ornament based upon the costume used in Zack Snyder’s Superman film. With such a rich three-dimensional model, Hallmark was able to create an ornament that features decent surface details and coloring. Measuring four inches tall, three and a quarter inches wide and three and one-quarter inches deep, the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament is one of three Comic Con ornaments released by Hallmark in 2013, but it has a serious flaw. Like the common release ornament, the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament has a pretty deep seam at the leg and butt juncture.
The Hallmark San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament is made of durable plastic. Superman’s costume is colored in solid black. He is ripped with well-defined stomach and leg muscles underneath his costume. The San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament has the traditional Superman symbol on his chest and it is molded in to negate any potential paint issues.
The San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel features a Superman who looks more like the animated character than Henry Cavill. The skin tones are monotonal as opposed to having rich coloring, which is unfortunate and undermines the potential realism of this ornament.
As a Hallmark Keepsake ornament, the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament could have a sound chip or a light-up function. He has neither, but honestly it would have been a hard sell to make a gimmick for this ornament.
As with all ornaments, the intent of the Hallmark Keepsake San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament is to be hung on a Christmas Tree. And for those creating the ultimate superhero Christmas Tree, the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament is a pretty ridiculous luxury ornament. The ornament has the standard metal hook loop embedded into the top of Superman’s cape at a pretty obvious position. From there, the ornament, when affixed to a tree with a hook, swings very easily. This back-heavy ornament is not as well-engineered as fans would hope.
Hallmark Keepsake began delving into the collectibles market in 1991 with Star Trek when it introduced the exceptionally limited edition U.S.S. Enterprise ornament (reviewed here!). Since then, they have made ornament replicas of almost all major franchises like DC comics, The Wizard Of Oz and Harry Potter. The San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament was limited to 1300 pieces and consumer demand for it has not been intense enough to make its value skyrocket. In fact, it remains easily obtainable in the secondary market, making it an unlikely to succeed investment piece, especially compared to the Star Wars and Star Trek options this year.
Fans of Superman, Zack Snyder’s vision of Superman, Henry Cavill, and DC comics characters are likely to find the San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Man Of Steel ornament not worth the effort of hunting down. One suspects most fans will go with the common release ornament (with its flaws and all) and not leap to shell out the extra dough on this one.
For other DC Universe superhero Hallmark ornaments, please check out my reviews of:
2013 Descending Upon Gotham City Batman ornament
2012 The Bat The Dark Knight Rises Limited Edition Ornament
2012 Catwoman ornament
2012 "Beware My Power" Green Lantern ornament
2012 The Dark Knight Rises
2011 Batman Takes Flight
2011 Green Lantern
2010 Limited Edition Harley Quinn
2009 Wonder Woman ornament
For other ornament reviews, please visit my Ornament Review Index Page for an organized listing!
© 2013 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
| | |