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Series: Hot Toys
Year: 2012

Witnessing his parents being murdered on the streets of Gotham City in his childhood, Bruce Wayne vows to avenge their deaths against crime as costumed dark vigilante - Batman. Under the control of the Joker criminial empire, Gotham City is full of gloominess and fearfulness. Batman starts his battle against his greatest foe - intefering with his evil plans, ruining his poisoning scheme, and finally eliminating him with his high-tech crime fighting equipment. Promising to defend Gotham City, he will appear whenever the Bat-Signal shows up high in the sky.

Figure: Let me state right at the get-go that this is my very first Hot Toys figure. I’ve seen the pictures, I’ve read other people’s reviews, but that didn’t change one thing: my complete and utter amazement at how life-like they manage to make these figures. Looking at this figure, especially in the pictures I made where there is no true sense of scale, one really thinks that one is looking at Michael Keaton in the 1989 Batman suit. It’s that life-like.

The extreme level of realism goes on in the rest of the figure. Both by way of proportions and detailing one might as well be looking at a normal (well-developed) man in a black rubber suit and cape with boots and gloves. Speaking of the suit, one needs to be a bit mindful here when it comes to posing Batman. The figure is very nicely articulated, make no mistake, but the rubber suit does hinder it a bit. If one intends, for example, to raise the arms above the head, one needs to do so in small steps, moving the arms a bit and then adjusting the suit, moving the arms again and so on. It’s a bit bothersome, but I don’t know who else it could have worked and still be a skin-tight rubber suit (I doubt Michael Keaton could move all that well in that suit, either).

The bat symbol on the chest is connected to the hood and cape, all of which is one piece and cannot be removed. I’m just mentioning this because it means that when Batman turns his head, the chest symbol moves off-center. Not a big thing, but it might bother some people, so I thought I’d mention it.

Overall this is a near-perfect likeness of Michael Keaton in the 1989 Batman film. Not sure what else I can say but that, so let’s move right on to what this figure can do.

Gimmicks: Even apart from the numerous gadgets this figure comes with (see below) it contains a number of gimmicks. First off, you get three different faces, or rather lower faces. Batman can’t take off his cowl, but you can give him three different chins. Closed mouth, open mouth, and bloody mouth. It looks a bit strange when you take out the lower face, leaving an empty cowl with eyes (which can move via a small lever in the back of the head), but it works. The faces are attached via a magnet, so exchanging them is very simple.

The same cannot be said, however, for the interchangeable hands. Removing them always leaves you sweating with fear that you’re going to break your expensive figure. Batman comes with seven different hands, four right and three left ones. They are open hands, closed fists, and hands for holding some of the various gadgets. I’d advise putting in your favorite pair and sticking with them. I’m very glad that the hands survived the picture session above without any damage and I’m not going to tempt fate again.

Finally Batman can open up his cape into a pair of huge wings via the help of two black sticks that can be slid into holes in the cape and then held in his hands (see picture above). It’s a bit of a hassle getting there, but it’s an awesome visual. So bottom line, the figure can do quite a bit beyond standing there looking pretty. And we’ve not even touched the gadgets yet.

Equipment / Add-Ons: Batman is famous for the numerous gadgets he carries with him, to the point where the word “utility belt” has become synonymous with Batman. So of course this Batman here, too, comes with a yellow belt. On the right side of the belt buckle is a hidden magnet, so you can attach the grapple launcher (folded together) to the belt without any hassle. The magnet is rather weak, though, so you need to put the launcher at the exact right position for it to hold tight. It works, though, so no complaints.

Speaking of the grapple launchers, Batman comes with two of them. One in the form of a small pistol, the other a much larger gauntlet with twin launchers, which can also launch sideways (as seen in the movie). He also comes with a bunch of other equipment, including what I believe to be the remote control for the Batmobile (still to come from Hot Toys), some silver gadget thing, two throwing stars, three capsules of some kind, and his famous Batarang plus rope, of course.

Finally there is a stand-up display included, a base with small lights that are supposed to light up Batman from below as if he were standing on some rooftop far above the street. Wouldn’t have needed that one, but it’s a nice little add-on, too. So all in all, while I’m not a big fan of figures with lots of small parts to lose, Batman does need his equipment. And I think they included just about all the stuff Keaton Batman had in the 1989 movie here, so no complaints.

Conclusion: I don’t really need to tell anyone who Batman is, right? I mean, who doesn’t know who Batman is? Personally speaking the 1989 movie Batman as portrayed by Michael Keaton is my favorite non-animated Batman of them all (I really don’t like Bale-Batman, sorry) and the same goes for my wife, so it wasn’t much of a stretch that she wanted this Batman here for her birthday. She got it, she loves me, and I can do this review for this excellent figure here. Isn’t life grand? Anyway, just about the only bad thing one can say about this figure is the price tag. In all other things, though: excellent! A must-have for all fans of Keaton Batman.

Rating: A


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