Toys / Comics to Toys / DCDirect

Green Lantern Kyle Rayner


By Hervé St.Louis
September 6, 2003 - 12:57

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Kyle Rayner is one of the most controversial men to have worn the mantle of Green Lantern but at least, his first DC Direct action figure is beautiful enough to attract several of his detractors. Before going further, let me say that I am not part of HEAT or anti Kyle Rayner. It's just that the character began his career just after I had given up on the Green Lantern franchise in the mid 1990s. So I am not very familiar with him.

Critics have dubbed Kyle Rayner the Generation X's Green Lantern. If that is so, then I am honoured to have his action figure. It is quite spectacular. This is not the first action figure of this character but it is the first by DC Direct.

One thing is certain it is the best one ever made based on this design. Kyle Rayner does not look like traditional Green Lanterns. He sports a modern design. So does the action figure. It was released just when DC Comics began featuring the updated look. Another figure based on the new more traditional Green Lantern uniform is coming very soon.

Likeness

Artists often portray Kyle Rayner as a smaller build than other characters. This figure captures this character's traits very well, although, the figure has comparatively as much muscles as Superman or Batman. However, that's also the way he is drawn in comics.

Sculpt

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The figure's stance is plain, as if he were preparing for a fight. His right fist is closed but his wrist is in the wrong angle. One cannot pose Kyle properly, as if he were about to power ring something, unless one bends his elbow. My only complaint is about the exaggerated thin hips on the character. It gives the figure an animated DC Comics' character look and makes you doubt the realism of such anatomy.

Paint

The paint job is simple but clean. Kyle's gloves, mask and boots are metallic green. There are highlights in his coarse black hair.

Scale

Green Lantern Kyle's scale fits well with other Green Lantern characters such as John Stewart, the first and the second Hal Jordan figures from DC Direct, Guy Gardner and even Alan Scott. The figure also fits well with the first modern Superman action from DC Direct. He is a little thinner and shorter than the other DC Direct action figures.

Stability

This figure is usually stable but will fall occasionally. You must bend his knees a little to stabilize him. Fortunately, his is not much top heavy like other DC Direct figures.

Articulation

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The figure sports nine points of articulations at the neck, the shoulders, the elbows, the hips and the knees. It would have really benefited from wrist articulations. This is very important for a Green Lantern character. His ball jointed shoulders are sturdy and tight. Their articulations are well done.

Plastic

The plastic is some of the best from DC Direct. It is the usual stinky type, but it seems very solid on Kyle.

Props

Green Lantern Kyle comes with a translucent green power battery and a life size power ring modelled on the one he owns in the comic books. Many have commented that a darker green or a painted lantern would have been better. The power ring is the best one I have received from DC Direct or other vendors. It will fit well in an adult male's hand, unlike most of the others. It will not stop your blood from flowing.

Packaging

Kyle Rayner came in a blister package. It was one of the first DC Direct action figure, after the Captain Marvel and Black Adam wave to have the plain, checkered pattern. Many fans prefer front art on their action figure cards.

Cost

Kyle Rayner retails for the usual DC Direct single action figure prices. Obviously, DC Direct products command a steep price that has discouraged many potential collectors and fans from starting a collection. Also, the irregular price distribution does not help consumers. DC Direct should fix this problem quickly.

Availability

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As mentioned earlier, DC Direct released this figure at the same time as the character's new suit was introduced. Since several fans had demanded the character, he sold well. Green Lantern characters are usually good sellers for DC Direct. This version of Kyle Rayner has existed in comics for close to a decade. His unique looks were very popular with younger fans and Gen Xers.

However, the new version, designed by Jim Lee is less streamlined and more respectful of the traditional Green Lantern look. Several hardcore Kyle Rayner fans may see this as too conservative. It really seems like DC tried to graft Hal Jordan's look on Kyle, in an attempt to quiet his detractors. The new version looks great, but several fans are happy with the first.

All of this means that though there are lots of Kyle Rayner toys available, this figure will probably be in demand by many fans. Watch as scalpers try to market the first Kyle Rayner as a rarity once the second figure arrives. So far, this figure has not sold out.

Update February 6 2005:
This figure has sold out from Diamond Comics, the exclusive distributor of this action figure.

 


Last Updated: September 6, 2021 - 08:15

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