Friday, April 1, 2011

Mattel Retro-Action Green Lantern 8" Figure REVIEW

In brightest day, in blackest night,
No evil shall escape my sight.
Let those who worship evil's might,
Beware my power... Green Lantern's light!

This is the Mattel Retro-Action DC Super Heroes Green Lantern 8-inch figure done in the style of the Mego 8-inch (200 mm) tall action figures of the 1970s. Green Lantern was one of the four figures that made up Wave 1, the others being Superman, Lex Luthor and Sinestro. Mattel did a retro thing here by keeping the 70's style comic book art for the characters pictured on the front and back of the card. It's pretty neat and brings back lots of memories.

The original Mego "World's Greatest Super Heroes!" were offered for an entire decade from 1972 until 1983. Green Lantern wasn't featured in the original line up of figures so I'm glad that I've finally landed my hands on my one and only Hal Jordan Green Lantern figure :)

The FIRST Green Lantern I ever knew was Hal Jordan, a test pilot who was given a power ring by a dying alien, Abin Sur, and who became a member of the Green Lantern Corps, an interstellar organization of police overseen by the Guardians of the Universe.

Hal Jordan's Green Lantern was the Silver Age Green Lantern when DC Comics successfully revived superheroes in the late 1950s. DC re-imagined them as new characters for the modern age and created Hal Jordan as the Silver Age Green Lantern, as opposed to the Golden Age Green Lantern Alan Scott which was a popular character in the 1940s.

The second Green Lantern to see publication is also the most notable. The character of Harold "Hal" Jordan was a second-generation test pilot, having followed in the footsteps of his father, Martin Jordan. He was given the power ring and battery (lantern) by a dying alien named Abin Sur, whose spaceship crashed on Earth. Abin Sur used his ring to seek out an individual who was "utterly honest and born without fear" to take his place as Green Lantern.

I didn't like the DC Direct 13-inch Green Lantern figure because he was just too BIG (I like them at 1:6 scale i.e. 12-inch and smaller). When they get too big, they start looking chunky and clumsy to me. The DC Direct series also seemed quite pricey for a figure with almost no accessories. Also, why did they have to make Hal look so angry? He might as well have been called Grumpy Lantern.

Mattel Retro-Action DC Super Heroes 8-inch figures seem to look alright to me and Hal Jordan Green Lantern is no exception. Green Lantern isn't the name of the hero but rather his job title. Think of it as if it were an intergalactic police department; whenever one Lantern retires, he passes on the ring to the next Lantern. Hal Jordan was the first earthling ever inducted into the Green Lantern Corps.

The most standout feature about Green Lantern's costume is his white gloves against the green and black of his suit. At the time, I believe Green Lantern's superhero costume was the only one that had white gloves.

I guess the white gloves is to make the green ring stand out. Each Green Lantern possesses a power ring and power lantern that gives the user great control over the physical world as long as the wielder has sufficient willpower and strength to wield it.

While the ring of the Golden Age Green Lantern (Alan Scott) was magically powered, the rings worn by all subsequent Lanterns were technological creations of the Guardians of the Universe, who granted such rings to worthy candidates. These individuals made up the intergalactic police force known as the Green Lantern Corps.

Here are some close-up shots of the Mattel Retro-Action DC Super Heroes Green Lantern 8-inch figure head sculpt and I gotta say "I LIKE it!"

When the Green Lantern character was reinvented, beginning with the introduction of Hal Jordan, the magical ring concept was replaced with a scientifically-based one.

And here is a close-up picture of Green Lantern's power ring. The new concept for the ring also came with new limitations. Specifically, the ring's charge would only last as long as one planetary rotation of the ring-bearer's home planet, which for the Green Lanterns of Earth is twenty-four hours and "due to a flaw in the unique metal that powers the battery," was ineffective against anything yellow.

Power rings are usually recharged by a Green Lantern's personal battery, which looks like an old fashioned lantern made of dark green metal. The user typically points the ring towards the lantern, and usually gives the Green Lantern oath while recharging the ring. These batteries are directly linked to the Central Power Battery on Oa and do not themselves need recharging.

My most recent reunion with the Green Lantern was in DC's "The New Frontier", an Eisner, Harvey, and Shuster Award-winning six-issue comic book limited series written and drawn by Darwyn Cooke, published by DC Comics in 2003-2004. I only knew about this series when I bought the "DC: The New Frontier: Absolute Edition". That was followed up with the film adaptation, a direct-to-video animated film, written by writer Stan Berkowitz, produced by Bruce Timm, with Darwyn Cooke serving as story and visual consultant.

"New Frontier" takes place primarily in the 1950s, and depicts the Golden Age superheroes Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman meeting Silver Age characters the Flash, Green Lantern, and Martian Manhunter. The story bridges the gap from the end of the Golden Age to the beginning of the Silver Age in the DC Universe. I was blown over by the art style of Darwyn Cooke.

"New Frontier" is a GREAT read and I highly recommend it!

Related posts including other Mattel Retro-Action DC Super Heroes figures:
Mattel Retro-Action Two-Face 8" Figure REVIEW
Mattel Retro-Action DC Super Heroes Batman 8" Figure with cowl and cape removed (pictures HERE)
Mattel Retro-Action DC Super Heroes Batman 8" Figure with cowl and cape (pictures HERE)
The Postman Cometh (Retro-Action DC Super Heroes) - blog post HERE
March of the Penguins - showcase of some of the Penguins a.k.a Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot (super-villain and arch-enemy of Batman) that have been produced and released as a toy and action figure as a result of the movies or TV series (including the animated ones) in which they have appeared over time.
FREE Star Trek Captain Kirk Retro Mego Style Figure from STGCC 2010 posted HERE

NEXT: Mattel "Retro-Action: DC Super Heroes" Green Arrow
and pictures of these two Emerald Allies together :)


Super-Duper ToyBox said...

i love this one, & was sorry i missed out on him... i did however get the DCD New Frontier Hal Jordan, which kicks ass! they're coming out with a John Stewart with AN AFRO, which i will be keeping my eyes peeled for!

alex teo said...

Hal Jordan is my favorite GL of them all so I just had to pick him up. In fact, I only just got him this week ;p

I remembered seeing your DCD New Frontier Hal Jordan GL post :) I was tempted to get him when I first saw him at the shop.

Anonymous said...

Glad to know that there are fellow DC retro figures collectors in SIN....may I ask where did you picked GL from. Haven't had much success with finding him locally. Seen lots of Series 2 (Batman/2 Face, etc).

alex teo said...

I got mine from DR MEGO ( as there isn't a shop in Singapore that brings these in :( CHEERS

Vincent Tan said...

Tks bro...much appreciated.
Will drop Dr Mego an email.

Wanted to also say that I am a regular visitor to your site. Admire your passion and willingness to record and share the good stuff with the rest of the toy collecting community.

John said...

This the only figure I am missing from the line. Definitely need to pick this one up.

alex teo said...

U R welcome Vincent :) Paul of DrMego is very nice and accommodating plus the prices he's offering is the BEST I've seen by far. That and he's most dependable and reliable. I got my pair of emerald allies pretty fast without worries.

Thanks for the kind words too. I'm glad to know that my passion is appreciated haha

alex teo said...

Hey John, I highly recommend it :) GL and GA are two of my favorites that I really had to get haha