In the comic book world, there WAS a golden rule about death. The biggest, most popular event in comics is normally when a character dies, but then we are always graced with a resurrection of some sorts. It was always said that two characters kept the tradition of death in comics more realistic, Captain America’s sidekick Bucky and Robin #2, Jason Todd. As you comic geeks out there know this rule was thrown out the door. The funny thing is that the return of both characters brought back two anti-heroes that fans would love and still remain “alive and kickin’” today! July gave us our very first Red Hood figure from MattyCollector’s Club Infinite Earths, but it ended up being controversial.
Jason Todd first appeared in Batman #357 (March 1983) and became the second Robin, sidekick to the superhero Batman, when the previous Robin (Dick Grayson) went on to star in The New Teen Titans, and later under the moniker of Nightwing. Though initially popular, following a revamping of his origin by Max Allan Collins, the Jason Todd version of Robin as written by Jim Starlin was not well received by fans. For 1988′s Batman: A Death in the Family storyline, DC Comics held a telephone poll to determine whether or not the character would die at the hands of the Joker, Batman’s arch nemesis. The character was killed off by a vote of 5343 to 5271. Subsequent Batman stories dealt with Batman’s guilt over not having been able to prevent Jason’s death. However, in 2005′s “Under the Hood” story arc, the character was resurrected, eventually becoming the second Red Hood and assuming a new role as an antihero who resembles Batman in many ways, except with a willingness to use lethal force and weapons.
So why are fans disappointed? This suit was only featured for a limited time and the one the Jason wears now is popular, and bad-ass if I may say so myself. I think I would have rather had the classic Joker version of the character and then the modern Jason Todd version. In a series based on characters from the classic DCU, the Joker’s first appearance costume would have been… well, classic! Nonetheless this is the figure we have and I am going to review it!
Red Hood is a decent looking action figure, and regardless of your preference, fits in nicely to any Batman collection. The off-white, almost grey look to his suit is nicely detailed. The black parts of Red Hood contrast sharply in color comparison, but could have been a little cleaner. The skull-beast head on his chest looks great, again using the blending technique to add effect to the skull. Nicely done. The body movement itself is very soft and is a little disappointing. Great articulation, but the soft joints cause for a lot of slipping while posing, especially in the swivel hip.The cape is just flexible enough to not cause posing problems, and is positioned correctly to prevent the figure from always falling down due to the weight of its pull. The head is definitely original, and I am still not sold on it. It looks fine and gets the job done, but I just feel like someone found it in a block set. Solid look, too bad its not removable, or Matty should have sculpted an alternative Jason Todd head…..hmmmm. So custom toy makers out there! Can you create a custom Red Hood 1 using this figure and the Mad Love tuxedo Joker!? Go at it!
Accessory-wise Red Hood comes with two Red Guns. I like this a lot, I think its very gimmicky and something we would see happen in the funny books. But the problem here lies within the hands themselves. Check out these two pictures and then we’ll discuss.
I mean what the hell? In a world where we pay for subscriptions and we shell out top dollar for our hobby, don’t you think we deserve a little better. The left hand is perfect, finger goes in the trigger hole and gun is grasped correctly. Right hand has the grip for a sword or hanging from a fire-escape. I wish that either the hand was identical to the other OR some kind of gun holster was added. Again, alternate heads would make for great accessories. This has been done for Marvel lines in the past, why can’t Mattel put a little more thought into certain figures, and how a move like this could create more of a demand for characters.
July’s Club Infinite Earth figure of the month, Red Hood gets 3 outta 5 stars. An odd choice for character selection, I really wish that Red Hood 1 would have been selected for this guy, he is the more classic version. But there is no excuse to pick this guy over what Jason Todd currently wears. Please Matty, make a Red Hood for the fan boys out there, I bet he would sell well at the retail level. I actually wouldn’t be surprised if something is announced this year with him in a future line. The popularity of this guy continues! His ongoing series, Red Hood and the Outlaws, is a decent book and proves that their is demand for the anti-hero!
Next month: Freddy Freeman AKA Captain Marvel Jr!