Monday, November 22, 2010

DC Universe Classics Wave 14 Collect and Connect Ultra-Humanite!

Yes, it's the elusive Walmart wave 14 and the even more elusive CnC figure, the Ultra-Humanite!

Ever since the wave was announced in ToyFare complete with pictures, there were only two figures I really wanted: Zatanna and ol' Monkeybrains here.  Ok, and maybe Alan Scott.  It seemed like it was going to be a tall order to get a build-a-figure without getting the figures themselves but what could one do?

Well, just a couple of Sundays back, I ventured down to the local weekly toy "flee" market after missing it for various reasons over the past month or so.  And guess what?  He was right there.  And only for S$50! (That's a low, low US$39!)  That's right, just the CnC itself, no other figures that I didn't want attached.

Yet, I didn't get him initially because he was the only one left and had pretty bad paint splash on the back of his leather costume.  So this weekend, I paid a visit to the market once more and what did I find?  My regular seller Dave (from the reputable Dave's Toylet, no less) had a couple more pieces on hand.  He told me one was scuffed pretty badly on the back his uniform so he'd only charge $45.  But thank goodness the other Humanite he had was in good condition and still gave me a further S$2 discount on that.  So US$37+ for one of the latest CnCs?  Hell, Yeah!

So the remaining question would be: where did these figures come from, and so cheap at that?

I can only think of one place: China.  Straight out of the quality control reject bin.  And while it's still a great figure, you'll see why it might have failed QC as we look at the ultimate smart-monkey himself (the Ultra-Humanite, not me) right after the jump!

Like: The highly detailed face.  Eyes, teeth, fur, sneer--it all says Epic Evil Mastermind!

Like: His proportions, especially those of his arms to legs.  It's very ape-like (duh, cuz he's a monkey, after all).  But he's also a genius, down to his uppity accent, so he's also got a very human posture.  Having said that, his long arms combined with his articulation allow him to look ape-ish or human-ish, depending if the situation requires more brute force or evil genius.

Like: Articulation.  He's got standard DCUC articulation, except for extra hinges in his wrist, and ball joints and thigh swivels at the hips! (So I guess that's not really standard DCUC articulation  The hip/leg PoAs are especially nice because he can twist and turn those short legs and have his "skirt" cover up what would otherwise be very obvious joints.

And these ball joints are the best kind--no alignments of hinges necessary before movement--ya just move 'em whichever way you feel like!

The "skirt", of course, also protects his modesty when he's doing all that monkeying around!

Dislike: The little QC failings--but I can't complain though, because he's probably a factory QC failed figure, and I'll never ever find him loose for this cheap anywhere else!

Among his flaws:

-Minor paint splash here and there from his yellow spikes onto his harness.
-Left bicep post can't fully plug into the shoulder (It's kinda stuck 3/4 of the way, as you can see.)
-Lower half of his upper torso isn't properly glued together.


Dislike: The one main flaw: The super loose waist-to-lower-torso joint.  The lower half of him dangles.  But the upside is that the figure is bulky and stable enough that he can still balancing on his own.

Like: His large size!  This is key because the Ultra-Humanite should be larger than most.  He's not as big as Kilowog and definitely not Chemo, but he's still a monster.  And this is key because larger figures are usually more stable and thus have better play/pose value.

Like: The semi-open hands.  These allow him to grip super heroes, "hold" guns, kinda point at things, even!  I wish they'd given him either open or closed fists though, because it's kinda tough to make him look like he's not trying to slap someone instead of punch them.

Dislike: His swivel/hinge wrists.  Most of his other flaws have been problems that shouldn't exist on a QC passed, fresh from package CnC figure.  But this problem will be inherent of a mint figure too--that while his wrists swivel fully, they can't fully utilize their hinges because of the forearm fur sculpt.  It's a real pity, because the intended ass-kickin' wrist articulation would go some way into giving Ultra-Humanite the ape-like flexibility that the character is capable of.


Aesthetics: 8.5/10 - I gotta give to the Four Horseman--they really now how to sculpt that hell out of a large monkey figure.  Off the top of my head I'm also thinking of MOTU Classics Gygor and DCUC Gorilla Grodd from Wave 2.  Both of them look awesome and Ultra-Humanite does not disappoint either.

They really managed to capture the essence of the character, especially in his face.  It's: 1) Evil.  2) Genius.  3) Feral.  And they even added a sneer!  Just look at those sharp teeth and that ice-cold stare and tell me it doesn't look like he's thinking of 276 ways of doing evil things to you!

The one down side to the figure I got though is the paint.  As you can see in the photos, there's bit of it splashed here and there, mostly the yellow from his spikes.  It's on his harness, in his "beard," you name it.  He's also got a couple of plastic stress marks on the front of his vest. 

Poseability: 9/10 - Despite his extra wrist hinges, Ultra-Humanite really just has swivels for his hands.  Points lost there for getting our hopes up.  Heh.

Then there's his head, which is a ball-on-hinge setup not unlike Kilowog but the motion is also limited by the sculpted fur.  It's really a pity because he's got great hip/leg movement.  Though he could also use double hinged elbows, it isn't a must.

The star PoAs of this figure by far though are the ball-jointed hips/legs.  Really, these are the true ball joints of legend (no pun intended) that don't get stuck when the hinge track and the direction you're bending the joint aren't aligned.  It really requires no thought at all to move--all of the thinking has been done in the design process by Mattel.  So bravo, Matty!  More CnCs should have these!

While on the one hand I'm really happy that they chose to give UH here the best possible articulation, it's a pity that some of it ended up being rather a little useless.

Fun: 9/10 - He's a CnC that's large (and furry), has a sinister look of greed and deception, is a monkey, and has scary brain veins.  Bottom line is this: he's simply too much fun!

He's also the first large evil CnC I really wanted because he naturally looks great posed fighting the Justice League or even scheming alone.  He's also a brand new figure of a recognizable villain, especially if you're a follower of the Justice League/JLU Animated series.  Heck, if you've followed any of the main DC superheroes, you'll know of him because I think he's appeared to fight against each of them at some time or other.

Value: 9/10 - S$48 (US$37) for an exclusive Walmart Wave CnC all at once?  Heck yeah!  So I may have to fix him up here and there, but I guess it's part of the fun, isn't it?  It's kinda why we don't throw way our toys of they break here or bend there--there's a sort of sense of accomplishment you get by "nursing" them back to health.  I guess it's why customizers customize and why toys like Legos are such a huge hit.  It's a pride thing.  So yeah, I'm thrilled to have found UH at a great price and in a good enough condition that I can effect some minor repairs to make him as good as new. :)

Overall: 9/10 - Ultra-Humanite is a must have.  He's hard enough to find that you'd probably fork out a large sum for a complete figure.  And if you do stumble upon him in your local Walmart, it would be hard to pass up figures like Zatanna and Alan Scott (I know I want those two...)

But is he worth going through all the trouble to assemble?  I'd say yes, a resounding yes, because he's a badass villain, looks great, and plays well.

Basically, he's a good toy and a great CnC which doesn't lack the one thing that makes the (good) regular figures great: articulation.  Yes, some joints are limited but it sure beats not having the PoAs at all.  Wave 9's Chemo (head, legs) comes to mind, as does Public Enemies' Brimstone (same great sculpt as Kilowog, but lacks a head, literally.)

And hey, he's the Ultra-Humanite! ;)


  1. oh man, i luv this guy, got most of the ultra-humanite appearances. and i actually saw the figure at $50 at china sq too. couldn't make up my mind, looks like u got it. hah

    u got to surround him with the JSA characters!

  2. Haha, I have very little JSA dudes cuz I'm not a huge fan. JLA for sure, but I guess you're the expert. ;)

    Yes man, get him! Worth it but inspect the good to make sure there's nothing majorly wrong with him. They'll normally let you take it out to check it. :)

  3. great deal! sucks about the qc issues but at least it got you the good deal

  4. Yeah, great deal no doubt and I got a chance to examine him before I bought him, so I knew what I was getting into.

    I just figured out that I could super glue the lower torso gap and the crotch piece so it won't dangle anymore! :)

    Oh, but I just realized that he's missing his master control thingy accesory. Still, a good deal like you say!

  5. when i was there, they were also selling the TRIGON CnC figure too. did u get that?

  6. No, I didn't. Not a Trigon fan though the figure looks really good. Also, Toyrealm in China Square central has a few Trigon, fresh from package. :) Think they cost $70-80.

    You got Trigon?

  7. nope although i am a Teen Titans fan from the Marv Wolfman/George Perez days so i guess that makes me a Trigon fan too, hah

    i keep coming up with excuses to why i shoudn;t get this or that figure. :P i told myself if i get Trigon, i need to get the Teen Titans too and i have no space left! haha

  8. Lol, that's a good thing! I think most up us FAIL to come up with good reasons not to buy stuff. You have a strong will, man. Sign up for the Green Lantern Corps. ;)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...