I recently covered some of my favorite Superman figures, and while it is correct that I love the Modern DC Direct version (reviewed here), and I am smitten with DC Direct’s Cyborg Superman (reviewed here), I love the Silver-Age Superman from the 2001 “Silver-Age Superman and Lois Lane Deluxe Action Figure Set.” In fact, I love this figure so much that I bought an extra and hung it from oldest son’s ceiling. It was that cool.
And it still is today. This is one of the better figures that we’ve had from DC Direct, and while the articulation isn’t 100% perfect, for me this is still a landmark figure. The sculpt is just a spot-on amalgamation of artists Curt Swann and Murphy Anderson (or Carmine Infantio) from the Silver Age, and you can see the sculptor’s (Tim Bruckner’s) pop-art influence in it. There is also a George Reeves influence in it. For those of you not old enough to remember, George was the actor that played Superman back in the day. In contrast to the modern Superman, this figure is not as muscled, most of the detail being hidden, as you might expect a tight-fitting union suit would. You can see the outlines of the body, the shape of the chest, and the lines where the pecs and ribs are, but the muscle detail is invisible. The cape is short; there is one for standing and another for flying. It’s lovely to look at — it’s a fantastic display piece and one that I covet.
The articulation is OK, but not great. There is a good number of joints in this figure: hinged ankles, hinged knees, t-crotch, ball shoulders, swivel biceps, swivel hands, hinged neck, and a swivel head. That’s quite a bit. My only complaint is that there aren’t ball hips — again, an ongoing complaint that I have with the older DC Direct action figures. While I prefer ab-joints, the lack of its existence here isn’t a show stopper, but no ball hips? CRIMINAL! I don’t have much to say about the articulation as it is above standard and doesn’t negatively impact the sculpt.
The figure comes with a base, an American flag, Lois (none of which are pictured), and two capes. The capes are great. As mentioned, you have one for standing, which has a slight flutter as though the wind were blowing through it. The other cape is posed for flying and Superman has a clear plastic o-ring in his back that is just perfect for attaching some clear fishing line in it. The flying cape has a hole in it that is just the perfect size for stringing some line and hanging Supes from the ceiling.
This is another great Superman figure from the early years. The paint is superbly well done and is well translated from prototype to production. The figure is very vanilla in the sculpt as it should be and perfect for displays that demand or need vanilla poses. I’ve often thought about using this as a placeholder in my DC Universe Classics JSA collection as he would be a perfect fit for that theme. That, or I may take my extra and see if I can Jimmy some DC Universe Classic hips on there. Hmm… that might be an idea.