Batman Unlimited has been an interesting line from the seemingly flailing Mattel DC Universe series. Admittedly the DC Universe 6 inch figures were doing very well from what I could tell. Figures were flying off the shelves and seemed like they were out with a new series every few months. The beginning of the end was the Matty Collector DC Club Infinite Earths subscription. Same price per figure in the store plus shipping and no build-a-figure piece. Granted the line did produce a Metron with his chair and Monsieur Mallah with the Brain but we also got a weak Golden Age Flash and pathetic Poison Ivy. Anyways, with DC Universe being a thing of the past and Club Infinite Earths on the verge of being shut down, Mattel produced the Batman Unlimited series to keep fans involved till the '66 Batman classics line hits shelves later this summer.
Through the Batman Unlimited line we've gotten some stellar figures. A pretty good line up of Injustice: God's Among Us video game based figures, "Kenner Super Powers" influenced Penguin, Planet X Batman and Earth 43 Batman (Crimson Mist Vampire). But the stand out figure from the line is by far the Dark Knight Returns Batman. I'll be the first to admit I love the sculpting on most of the DC Direct figures but sometimes the play value suffers from the lack of articulation. The newer Batman: Arkham City figures from DC Direct and some of the larger "Deluxe" figures are sporting more impressive articulation though so don't count them out yet. The Dark Knight Returns Batman though was a figure people were speculating on for a while now, especially with the fact DC and Masters of the Universe are shared brands of Mattel. The over-muscular body of the He-Man figures lends itself very well to the aging Bruce Wayne from my favorite Frank Miller Batman book.
The Mattel Dark Knight Rises Batman sports your average Masters of the Universe Classics articulation (swivel/pivot at the neck, shoulders and hips. swivel at the waist, wrists and top of the bicep and pivot at the ankles, knees and elbows.) The sculpt is from none other than Mattel's go to guys for epic toys, the Four Horsemen. It's apparent all over the figure from the detail on the utility belt, folds in the costume's gloves, the top scallop of the boots and Batman's grim and grissled expression. The figure comes packaged with a lonely batarang but for a series that's usually devoid of accessories it's an OK throw in.
There's only a few complaints in my mind. The cape is made of a softer plastic / vinyl but it has such a stiff look to it. The cape does not retain any poses, it looks like Alfred over starched when doing the laundry. The batarang is just this thin sliver of bat-shaped plastic that is just kind of lost in Batman's giant hands. Not sure what could have been done to make it better but it just feels like the figure could have done without the batarang altogether. My last complaint is with the bat symbol on his chest. I know it costs more to put additional sculpting on a figure but I was hoping for the bat symbol to be raised or have some kind of relief to it. My complaints are small and damn near unnoticeable, all in all I give the figure a solid 4 1/2 stars. Don't hesitate grabbing this figure, it's available for decent prices on Amazon and Big Bad Toy Store (roughly $18 and that's not bad considering it's $15 at