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First Look – DC Universe Classics Justice in the Jungle 2-pack

mattel_logoGreetings, DC Fans! Wow, there have been a lot of really cool new DC and MOTU pictures and reviews popping up around the interwebs over the past few days. Well, don’t think for one second that we would leave you out in the cold and not bring you something brand new. That’s right, we have a First Look for you courtesy of the always great Toy Guru – it’s the Matty Collector exclusive DCUC Justice in the Jungle 2-pack. While this set is not up for release until mid-December, we are going to give you the rundown on this great pairing of two of the DC Universe’s strangest heroes – Animal Man and B’wana Beast. Yup, B’WANA BEAST! Read on for words and pictures.

Frikkin’ B’WANA BEAST! Now, there was a TON of really cool DCUC product shown off at the San Diego Comic Con this year. I mean, Steppenwolf, Kilowog, Robotman, the list goes on and on. While I was overwhelmed to see so many things that I wanted to have on my shelf immediately, this odd little Matty 2-pack is something that really blew me away. Really, how cool is it that Animal Man and B’wana Beast were announced and shown for release before the end of the line’s second year? This is a true example of what I want to see so much for of from this line, character selection that cannot be denied. Once thought to be titled the Animal Instincts set, upon opening the box it is clear that the name is now Justice in the Jungle. In our interview with Toy Guru we learned that this set is the brainchild of Mattel’s head DC designer Bill Benecke and his combined love of character with the impeccable talents of the Four Horsemen make it so that you are never going to need to get another B’wana Beast or Animal Man figure ever again.

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If you have been keeping up with this line in the slightest you know the normal drill for the packaging and this set fits with the box that has been used for all of the previous sets. I like it, there is a lot of empty space (particularly in this set) but I am fine with it if it allows for accommodating larger sets in the future. The poses in the package are a little odd as B’wana Beast looks to be doing his impression of legendary professional wrestlers the Bushwhackers and Animal Man appears to be in mid nut-punch, but it matters little to me as I am an opener.

Animal Man and B'wana Beast
Animal Man and B'wana Beast

The figures themselves work really well and I want to highlight that Buddy uses the smaller, slimmer male buck while B’wana Beast uses the larger body shared with guys like Captain Atom. People have said that Mattel should have used the Hawkman body for B’wana Beast (you know, because of the nipples?) but it would have been a trade off as I think that body is too big for B’wana. Paint is a real strong point for this set as well, Animal Man’s eyes are perfectly painted under his goggles and B’wana Beast has very nice airbrushing that accents his muscle tone and very clean lines in the stripes of his loincloth and in the spots of his leopard print.

There is not a ton of 100% new parts on either of the figures (as they don’t really require it) but what is there is great, especially with Animal Man – his jack is new (not a Mr. Terrific reuse) and he does have one of the best head sculpts of the line so far, I really, really love it. B’wana has a great head sculpt as well and I really like how his boot cuffs are textured (much like Giganta’s costume). They could have just used Red Tornado’s boots by they opted to go the extra mile and really counts.

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Animal Man

B'wana Beast
B'wana Beast

From a quality of materials and construction standpoint goes these two have nice strong plastic and no gummy or loose joints. B’wana Beast has some great range in his hips and you can easily bring his legs together. The downside on both of them is that they have about to same range of motion in their necks as the recently released series 9 figures. B’wana Beast fares a little better than Animal Man, but he is still pretty limited. I really hope that Mattel is able to reevaluate the neck joints and return to form of previous waves.

Animal Man Animalback

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Like I said, I am THRILLED to get this set. It is hard to put it into words because really, it is just that nerd glee you get from actually having figures of these characters in your collection. It really represents what I want to see Mattel take advantage of for these online exclusives – great character selection and quality that matches the price. Having Animal Man and B’wana Beast is so cool for me because, not only do you get guys that make the DCU special, but this set will also put a lot great variation in your display. I can’t wait to see pictures of the crazy antics of B’wana Beast.

52 Crew
52 Crew

So, thanks for reading. We will have a couple more reviews coming to you in the next day or so, as well as more pictures. I have to apologize for not getting more figures into the pictures with them, I am moving this weekend so all of their plastic brethren are packed up in a (big) box. So stay tuned for more.

Blue Beetle, Animal Man, B'wana Beast and Aquaman
Blue Beetle, Animal Man, B'wana Beast and Aquaman

*Thanks again to Toy Guru and Matty for making this one possible. We really appreciate it. B’wana Beast – WOO!

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