Batman V Superman: When Good Toys Come From Bad Movies

Can you hate a movie but love its characters, or does a bad cinematic experience poison you against them? Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice was a massive disappointment for me, but damn if I don't adore DC Films' Superman and Armoured Batman figures.

It must be tough to sell $US50 ($66) premium figures based on a film that the core audience largely hated. The basic figures you can pick up for cheap at Walmart are one thing — kids will play with Batman and Superman no matter how dreary a movie they're attached to.

But the DC Films line is aimed at adult collectors. The six-inch figures are packed with accessories like extra hands, additional head sculpts and tiny, fragile heat vision beams. These particular figures were sculpted by James Marsano, one of DC Collectibles' finest artists.

The key to appreciating well-crafted action figures based on bad properties is to have an attitude somewhere between serious adult collector and kids playing in their backyard. I am an adult who collects toys, but I also play with the toys I collect, posing them, photographing them, creating photographic evidence of my personal bias towards Batman.

Haha, Superman is going to crash. Superman is the worst. #TeamBats #MarthaWAYNE

Being able to set the movie aside in my mind, I can appreciate the effort put into making these two figures come to life.

Take Armoured Batman, for example. He's one of the bulkiest Batmen going, yet he still boasts 36 points of articulation.

The capes on both figures have wire running through the sides, allowing for basic poseability. This shot looks like something out of The Dark Knight Returns To Mike Fahey's IKEA Shelving.

The paint detail on Batman's armour is gorgeous, though they might have gone a bit heavy on the utility belt black wash. I guess it helps him blend into the darkness. Otherwise he'd just be glowing eyes and a bright yellow belt.

The lower chest plate is also a button. You'll see.

Speaking of glowing eyes, the Armoured Batman figure has them right in front of its scratched and scuffed metal cowl.

He kinda looks like Lego Batman from the neck up. Can't wait for Lego Batman.

Armoured Batman comes with six different hands, a posing stand, and . . . well.


Maybe throw that piece away.

Meanwhile, in sunny, ruined Metropolis, littered with the dead bodies of Bruce Wayne's employees . . .

Start humming the Richard Donner music now.

Look, in front of those drawers and that blurry guitar neck! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's sculptor James Marsano magically managing to capture Henry Cavill's entire acting range in a single head sculpt!

He's angry! He's sad. He's got gas!

Superman is a bit more basic than Armoured Batman, mainly because he really doesn't need armour (or a gun) to kill people, just his exquisitely-detailed and chiselled physique. He hits people with that physique, and they die. Do not tell me that guy he punches through a brick wall at the beginning of the movie is not paste right now. Ack. Happy place, happy place.

Superman is still a jerk.

Superman comes with six different hands (I suppose he could steal Batman's gun), a posing stand and an additional head sculpt that's mildly frightening out of context.


Do not be scared, those holes are there for reasons. Heat vision reasons.

I was terrified I was going to break these things. They are ridiculously small.

The heat vision is a small thing that really adds to the dynamic between the two figures.

The better to burn you with.

Despite being sculpted to resemble their on-screen counterparts, once I got Armoured Batman and Superman out of the box and played around with them a bit, they were no longer Dawn of Justice figures.

They were just Bulky Old Batman . . .

Do you bleed? I'm asking for a friend.

. . . and Henry Cavill, Superman cosplayer to the stars.


    I liked the Ultimate Cut, what can I say. But there's major issues when in 2 episodes of Supergirl Tyler Hoechin managed to present a far superior Superman than Cavill has in 2 whole movies :(

    Loved the movie. Don't get the hate.

      Agree with others here, I really enjoyed the movie. The hate seems to stem from a handful of over-opinionated fanboys trying to look cool by hating on it

      Ive only watched the 3 hour cut, but it did feel that long at all.

        Try watching the 2 1/2 hour cut, you'll understand. The 3 hour cut flows excellently, the narrative is there, the scenes flow into each other very well. Everything is fleshed out.

        Now go and rip out 30 minutes of connective tissue, everything Clark Kent investigates, anything that character builds Superman (ANYTHING), and reorder the scenes with Lex so they don't make sense. You've now got the cinematic cut, a jumbled mess of a movie. The Ultimate Cut is a great movie, the cinematic cut a mess. It's not because 'fanboys want to hate', it's because the cinematic cut was a bad movie, a bad, rushed cut of a film that was so much better in its complete form (we will never actually see the FULL FULL 4 hour cut alas).

        It's too easy to say 'the fanboys tried to look cool', when you've got a planet that refused to support it with repeat screenings. Yet, they do by and large praise the ultimate cut, for being a far superior film.

          It's still an epic eyesore, way too serious, many missed opportunities with cheesy tie ins.

          Nolan spoilt us with the dark knight, that was just all around class.

            Indeed but I can seperate Nolans movies from the current DCEU. TDK is a brilliant movie first, superhero movie last, which is why it's amazing. TDKR, that's a whole different mess...

            I loved parts of BVS, other parts are rotten still (MARTHA!) but some parts are a delight. Others, a total missed opportunity indeed. But overall, I love the extended version, it's the cinematic one I think was a turd.

              Agreed on TDK, great movie first, hero movie second.

              Fair enough, yeah when I walked out of BvS at the cinemas I was like.... what the? When I watched the extended I was like ahhhh, ok this is mildly better. So maybe all of the initial over the top frustration was because the movie is "ok"... but the cinematic just creates that many more puzzling points that people think the movie should have been an abortion.

              I don't think the movie is bad, more confusing on a few fronts, plenty of missed opportunities and clearly not learning much from previous DC mistakes which makes me angry at the people behind it... how can they do this shit again !!!!

              All I can hope for is they see where they're going wrong and eventually bring out some decent films.

          I have seen both.

          i liked them both.

          I don't understand the hate for the ' Martha' line either.

          I feel like this was picked up on by an early reviewer and became 'a thing'.

          I feel that many movies are made or broken by the hype they are getting, before they've even been released these days.

    BvS was a better movie than that drivel that was suicide squad.........blergh!!

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