I surprised myself and went to see Man of Steel this week. I really wasn’t planning on it seeing as I have little interest in the character. But then I got the big invite and figured “why not? It will be another superhero movie I can hate and make fun of.” Well I ended up liking it quite a bit. Maybe this was because I didn’t have any expectation. Possibly it could have been because I’ve never seen the Christopher Reeve Superman movies. The only one I did see was the Bryan Singer version a few years back where Superman stalks Lois and her kid. I guess while I’m listing my Superman credentials I watched an episode of Smallville while in Mexico.
So there is this Man of Steel movie out and like I previously said I liked it quite a bit. I’d probably describe it as a heartfelt story that Zack Snyder happened to. I think Superman helped me realize my problem with superhero movies: I hate superheros. Maybe I don’t completely hate them but I definitely find myself not caring about them. This is why I liked Iron Man 3 because Tony Stark spent most of the movie out of his armor. This was what I really dug about Man of Steel as well, since it was a reboot we got to spend a good majority of the film telling the origin story. This means I got to meet both of Clark’s parents: Russell Crow his real dad and Kevin Costner the kindest man on earth who I want to give me a hug when I feel sad.
Despite the over the top drawn out fighting and city destruction scenes I really enjoyed the experience. Zod was a decent villain, but the way his bangs were cut made him look like he was always rocking a bowl cut. For some reason I felt so good about him last week I bought his action figure. This was more of an impulse upon an impulse because I originally saw General Zod in his bodysuit and thought nothing of him. In comparison to that first release I thought his armored version looked pretty excellent, so I grabbed him and Faora at a local Walmart.
Faora turned out to be pretty awful, I did a quick video of it here.
Zod isn’t bad, but I tend to like him less after seeing the movie. The biggest disappointment is the helmet because they looked so cool in the film. I don’t think Mattel captured the look very well at all. It’s a morphing helmet in the movie so they decided to do the phase where the head is completely covered up. The problem is the helmet ends up looking like a scrunched up Prometheus Engineer. The top is see-through so you can see the top of his forehead and hair-line.
The other miss here is the head sculpt. Michael Shannon has a pretty distinct face and somehow they managed to make him look like some neutral guy with a goatee. The white middle section of his facial hair is nowhere to be found. The facial structure of both the sculpt and paint don’t bring out the actor at all. This has always been a problem with Mattel’s “Movie Masters” lines; the head sculpts and paints are just far too soft. NECA certainly doesn’t name their big movie figures “Masters” yet my Predator Dutch figures are more “Master” than anything I have seen Mattel do under that banner.
For all the bad things I’ve said about poor Zod there is also some good here. The thing that drew me to the figure was the big bulky armor, and it does not disappoint even after you have freed him from his card. The armor’s sculpt is extremely detailed and does a great job of representing what was in the film. His body is decently articulated despite all the armor. General Zod has the typical articulation scheme on a Movie Masters of even DC Universe Classics figure. The cape has a black and green tint to it and the figure stands fine on its own. Big plastic capes tend to mess up a lot of figure’s center of balance, but Zod stands up very well. He even comes with a little black display base if you want to use that.
You will pay between $15 – $20 for this action figure depending on where you go. If you are really into getting some Man of Steel toys this is one of the better choices, but that is only if you are paying around $15 or less. I think anything higher is asking too much for this guy. As far as the body is concerned, this is the best version of General Zod Mattel has put out but you will have to deal with a really inaccurate head.
If you want to grab one you can check out Amazon if you can’t wait. However I will warn you that like most movies they severely over-merchandized the Man of Steel. Waiting it out may be the best strategy if you don’t need to have them right now as they are bound to hit clearance. The choice is yours and yours alone!