In an effort to become more efficient I’ve started to write Figure Friday columns well in advance of when I would normally start to write them. Results have been mixed so far especially since a lot of what I write about depends largely on when stuff shows up on my porch. As fate would have it I’m currently waiting on a couple of things right now so let’s find out what showed up!
DC Multiverse The Flash (Jay Garrick)
I’ve written a fair bit about McFarlane’s DC Multiverse line over the past few years; not all of it has been to my liking but I’ve yet to swear off the line in totality. It’s a continual source of amazement for me that the line has only been around for three years and has somehow produced figures numbering in the triple digits.
Seriously, McFarlane releases these figures in a virtual torrent and it’s impossible to keep up with every single one. There have been figures that have come and gone that I’ve either never seen at retail or spotted once and never again. As a collector, I suppose it creates an immediacy to pick up each new release or you’ll be forced to pay secondary market prices on something you slept on previously. Comparatively, it makes other toy companies look like they’re standing still next to McFarlane, and I really wonder what their production and manufacturing schedule is like since it’s able to keep up this breakneck pace.
With all that said, I was able to catch the newest Flash action figure. It seems like scarcely a Figure Friday instalment goes by in which I’m not writing about a Flash figure. I’m still waiting for a good contemporary version of Barry Allen or Wally West, but I was pleasantly surprised that McFarlane put out a great version of Golden Age Flash, Jay Garrick.
For the uninitiated, Jay Garrick was The Flash before The Flash. He was Barry Allen’s inspiration who existed only in a comic book until it was discovered that he was really in an alternate dimension that was slightly out of phase with ours. It’s all very comic book-y, but Garrick was the first Flash and bears more than a passing resemblance to the FTD Florist guy/Hermes/Mercury.
Surprising even myself, I’ve got next to no notes on this figure. I’ve expressed my dismay in the past that (in my opinion) the sculpts on these figures contain a lot of unnecessary details such as textures or other embellishments that detract from their classic comic book designs. Sometimes it works, other times it doesn’t, but this Flash figure has just the right amount of detail.
As you can see, Garrick has a pretty simple costume: blue pants, red shirt/boots, cool helmet. There have been variations on that over the years but it’s always roughly in the same ballpark. I did say a small prayer of thanks that they didn’t depict him wearing buccaneer boots that seemingly most heroes came equipped with up through the 1970’s. Those boots and the whole underpants-over-the-pants look can go straight to hell.
This figure seems to be Jay Garrick in his prime. Depending on the artist drawing the character that month he can range from something like this to more of a Robert Redford type, or even downright grandfatherly. Mind you, this character has been fighting crime since WWII but is still around and breaking the sound barrier because, again, comic books.
The bright primary colors on the figure really make it “pop” on the shelf and it’s fun to look at something that’s just so comic-y. I have seen some photos online of a chase variant that has a more muted color palette that’s more inline with the character’s appearance in the Flash TV show.
The figure comes with an alternate set of hands, some Speed Force lightning effects, trading card, and figure stand. The helmet is non-removable (which is fine) but the plastic on the winged helmet is a bit too soft for my liking and I’ve found myself fiddling with them on more than one occasion. It should also be noted that one of the boot-wings snapped off when I was attempting to affix a lightning bit to it, but I was able to pop it right back in place.