Monday, October 17, 2016

A Decent Rendition Of An Uncertain Subject: The 2016 Wonder Woman Ornament Soars!

The Good: GREAT sculpt, Awesome outfit coloring
The Bad: Slight right bias, light on skin tone coloring.
The Basics: The 2016 Hallmark Keepsake Wonder Woman Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice ornament is very cool even if its coloring is somewhat inconsistent.

I am a huge fan of Wonder Woman and right now, I find myself in a weird emotional bind. I was not a huge fan of Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice (reviewed here!), but I am a big fan of Wonder Woman. There is a slew of merchandise being released now, in advance of the cinematic debut of Wonder Woman of Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman. For as much as I love the character of Wonder Woman and despite how impressed I was that Gadot pulled off the role in Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice, I do not have high hopes that Warner Brothers won't screw up the character when they try to build a franchise on her next year. So, I have some trepidations in principle about things like the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman Hallmark ornament.

Despite not going overboard in merchandise for the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice version of Wonder Woman, it is hard not to be happy with Hallmark's rendition of her.


The Wonder Woman ornament faithfully presents Wonder Woman as seen in Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice with her shield and sword in a pose that is mid-leap. This version of Wonder Woman features the iconic DC Comics super hero in her bustier outfit with a short pleated skirt, with the knee-high red boots and golden tiara she is known for. Her Lasso of Truth is affixed to her hip and her bracelets are on her forearms. This version of Wonder Woman is very much a warrior incarnation of the character.

The ornament, released in 2016, is an exceptionally good work in terms of the amount of sculpted details, even if the coloring is a bit basic. Measuring four and one-quarter inches tall, two and one-quarter inches wide and one and three-quarters of an inch deep, the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman ornament is one of the few DC super hero-based ornaments released by Hallmark, one of three from Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice released this year.

The Hallmark Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman ornament is made of durable plastic and it looks good. Wonder Woman's costume is colored in dark red, bronze, and dark blue for the outfit, with many gunmetal-colored accents to give the character an armored look. This version of Wonder Woman looks just like Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman from Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice. The sculpt is decent and detailing like the way the skirt falls on the heroines legs impressively create the feeling of movement for this action-oriented character.

As for the coloring, the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman is a weird mix of brilliant and bland. Wonder Woman's outfit is cast in mostly metallic tones (they have a pearlescent quality) that is very cool. Hallmark did not make the costume look clean; it looks battle-hardened and weathered, which is just plain awesome. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the skin tones and the hair on the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman ornament. The skin tones are not at all subtle, realistic in their shading (she is cast in a monotone for her skin coloring) and her hair is solidly black in a way that human hair is not.


As a Hallmark Keepsake ornament, the Wonder Woman could have a sound chip or a light function for her Lasso. She does not. Instead, this is just a simple rendition of Wonder Woman as she appeared in Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice without any additional flair, save the stand.

The Wonder Woman ornament comes with a clear plastic stand. The stand is about two and one-half inches tall and features a small peg that plugs into Wonder Woman's right foot. The stand is a good idea, but it illustrates a critical fault in the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice ornament set. The three ornaments Hallmark released from the feature film in 2016 each have a part of a base that allows them to be stood up, as opposed to hung on a tree. The Wonder Woman component is a supplemental one (i.e. one may hook the base pieces from Superman and Batman together without Wonder Woman) and it has the potential benefit of stabilizing the two other ornaments. I write "potential benefit" because the bases I found and connected were not always perfect matches. The bases clip together, but some have slight warping to them. The Wonder Woman ornament base is good because it can help stabilize a warped base, but by clipping it into either base part that is warped, some portion of the base will likely end up off-kilter. In my experience, it was most frequently the Wonder Woman ornament that suffered; when she is plugged into her base, which is then plugged into an irregular pair of bases from the other two ornaments, Wonder Woman looks like she is leaping askew. The Wonder Woman base does allow the ornament to stand on its own, which is nice. In fact, I liked the Wonder Woman ornament standing on its own as when it was part of the triumvirate, Wonder Woman's sword and leg are obscured by the capes from Batman and Superman. This was an excellent idea, with a poor execution from Hallmark.


As with all ornaments, the intent of the Hallmark Keepsake Wonder Woman ornament is to be hung on a Christmas Tree. And for those creating the ultimate super hero Christmas Tree, the Wonder Woman ornament is an essential piece, though Hallmark has produced plenty of other Wonder Woman ornaments for those who are not fans of Gal Gadot's version of her. The ornament has the standard steel hook loop embedded into the top of Wonder Woman's head. While it is hard to make such a thing invisible, the hook loop does not look as obvious as on some of the character ornaments Hallmark produces. From this hook loop, the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman ornament has a slight right bias. It is not overly problematic, but it is noticeable, especially given that Wonder Woman would otherwise look like she is leaping straight up.


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 Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman ornament did not sell out at any of the Hallmark stores I have yet been to, which might indicate that I am not the only one with trepidations about the direction of the cinematic Wonder Woman. If the past and other franchises are any indication, if Wonder Woman is a hit, merchandise marketed of her from Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice will either increase in value or be reissued. If Wonder Woman is a success, this ornament will likely appreciate quite a bit in value; if it fails to find its audience, this one will probably simply be clearanced at the end of the season and not get back up to its original issue price in the secondary market. It is a crapshoot, but on the merits, the 2016 Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman ornament is worth investing in.


Fans of Wonder Woman and DC comics characters are likely to be happy to have a Wonder Woman ornament, but the Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Wonder Woman ornament represents an iteration of her that fans might not be sold on - either for the theory or the execution.

For other DC Universe Hallmark ornaments, please check out my reviews of:
2015 Lynda Carter As Wonder Woman
2014 Bane The Dark Knight Rises (Limited Edition)
2014 1989 Batmobile
2014 Defender Of Mankind Superman
2013 Man Of Steel
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!

© 2016 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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