Last year, NECA stunned us by doing the impossible, with the release of their 7″ scale Michael Keaton Batman. This year, they’ve upped the ante, releasing three more 7″ figures based on the most iconic cinematic renditions of the heroes and villains of the DC universe. Their Adam West Batman was awesome, and the Heath Ledger Joker was about the best toy ever released based on the character, but the crowning jewel of this collection is, without a doubt, Superman as portrayed by Christopher Reeve.
Reeve’s Superman remains one of the most purely perfect page-to-screen super hero transitions, and NECA’s action figure is an incredible rendition of the actor in his most famous role. The likeness is uncanny, from Reeve’s piercing blue eyes, to the ever-present spit-curl in his hair. Superman’s focused gaze has been called too serious by some people, but I find his look to be filled with a sense of heroic determination that, to me, epitomizes the character in his first two films.
Offsetting Reeve’s serious expression is his brilliantly bright blue and red costume, which is incredibly eye catching in its boldness. The Superman movies were released in an era before the post-Matrix grounding of super hero films, and NECA’s figure pays homage to this bright and vibrant cinematic aesthetic with Reeve’s primary colored pallet. Thanks to the richly detailed sculpt, with its subtle sense of cloth-like texture, the bright colors complete the effect of Reeve’s spandex costume, side-stepping any danger of the figure looking too toy-like or losing a sense of realism.
Superman is very well articulated, with an excellent ball jointed neck (which includes a wide enough range to allow for many standing AND flying poses), ball shoulders and hips, a ball waist, half-ball elbows and knees, hinged swivel wrists and rocker ankles. This articulation pattern not only opens up worlds of great posing options for the figure, but helps to express the figure’s personality. Want Superman to stand tall, as a symbol of truth, justice and the American way? Raise his chin high and extend his back and chest using the perfectly-designed waist joint. Want your Superman to (believably) fly? Lift his arms up and out, and replace his fist hands with the alternate flying pose pair. This guy can easily hit any iconic super hero pose you could think of, and always looks great in the process.
The figure features a cloth cape, which gives him a strong sense of design continuity with the rest of NECA’s DC movie heroes, while also not inhibiting the figure’s range of motion or offsetting his balance. Small details of the sculpt, like the wrinkles and glossy finish of his leather-like boots, help to complete the figure’s look, as the most film-accurate Reeve Superman toy I have ever seen.
Superman is available now at select Toys R Us stores, as well as the Warner Brothers Home Entertainment eBay store. Do yourself a favor, and pick up the best action figure of the year while you can.