In what universe does Aquaman completely trounce Superman? This one, if you’re going by the quality of collectible busts in DC Direct’s Heroes of the DC Universe series.
Last week I took a look at DC Direct’s new Mera bust, featuring the queen of Atlantis as imagined by comics artist Terry Dodson. I commented then that the male characters produced in these bust series tend to be of lower quality than the females, citing my recent Superman bust review as an example of shoddy craftsmanship. Wouldn’t you know that the very next piece released would go and prove me wrong? Aquaman is the real deal, and he’s a fantastic tribute to a comics character that often gets the shaft from fandom.
Aquaman comes in two pieces in the box: the main bust and the separate trident. The trident slides easily into Aquaman’s hands and will rotate to any angle for optimum display of the pointy end. Once assembled, the Aquaman bust is still in scale with the rest of this line but is notably taller than the others; the trident gives him an extra couple of inches that you’ll need to take into account when you’re displaying him.
He’s posed in mid-thrust with the trident, and his face is contorted in either a battle yell or a particularly fervent verse of “Mandy.” I prefer to think it’s a battle yell, because the king of Atlantis doesn’t sing Manilow. A particularly nice design choice is that Aquaman’s bust matches that of Mera, featuring some semi-translucent water with purple tentacles wrapping up to encircle the figure. I took a few extra photos to show how well Mera and Aquaman display together.
From head to base to trident, I haven’t been able to find a flaw with this Aquaman. The sculpt is extremely dynamic and tight, and the paints are exceptionally bordered. There’s no overpainting to be seen! Of particular interest to me in the area of paints is that there’s actually some skintone variation on Aquaman’s face. The DC Direct pieces usually have flat paintjobs, but this one definitely has a little shading, and it really enhances the piece. I hope this will be a new trend for DC Direct.
I have no reservation at all in calling this the best entry in the Heroes of DC line, topping both of the previous entries that I really liked, Batman and Green Lantern. This is a top notch bust, and it just might singlehandedly give you a little more respect for Aquaman.
Rating: 5 / 5 Stars