Thanks to the Eaglemoss, we have been fortunate enough to receive a few DC Chess Collection pieces that have not even hit our shelves yet. Here is an advanced preview on the pieces that are yet to be released locally.
When the collection started over a year ago it was solely about Batman, his allies and his enemies. As you can imagine I was pleasantly surprised to find a Superman included in my final Batman issue. However, Superman was set to usher us into a new generation, as the New 52 DC Chess Collection picked up where Batman had left off.
The New 52 series offers some great heroes and villains that will take your chess collection to the next level. The sculpts are great and the quality has not dropped since the transition from Batman to the New 52. Also with the new series comes new character designs. So if you have been following the DC Collection you do not have to worry about sculpts being recycled. They have all been given the New 52 look and finish.
We have been treated to 7 issues, which shall be reviewed in order of their release, starting with issue No.50… The Joker!
Undoubtedly, one of the greatest villains ever created, The Joker finds himself as the Dark Horse in this collection. Yes, unlike the Batman collection piece, Jack Napier is no longer King. He has been dethroned by Lex Luthor. This chess piece shows The Joker with his new sadistic signature look – he wears his own face as a mask (after asking the Dollmaker to remove it). The magazine/book takes you a bit further into the history of this psychotic criminal mastermind as it recalls events from both Joker’s past and present. The metallic resin on the sculpt gives his mask a Leatherface-like look, with the muscle tissue of his forehead exposing itself. But this does not stop him from striking one of his signature boastful poses.
Next up we have piece No. 51… Shazam!
Shazam is a White Pawn piece that boasts a great sculpt, despite the weird webbing area between his thighs (but it does not look as dodgy as that sounds). The metallic resin works well with Shazam’s Costume as it accentuates his paneling and truly makes him look magical. He holds a bolt of lightning in the palm of his hand. His hood and cape look great. The sculpt on his face also looks good and the paint job is excellent. His magazine/book sports the cover of the New 52 Shazam graphic novel. Issue no. 51 is fully detailed. It covers the origin of Shazam and features his most famous rival, Black Adam. It goes on to recall events such as the Trinity of Sin and the day when John Constantine was granted the powers of Shazam. This is an excellent issue that documents the history of a young legend.
Piece No.52 is The Black Queen and Wonder Woman’s greatest enemy, Cheetah. This is one sexy sculpt. She prances and pounces wearing only a loincloth. This sculpt is less bulky and more delicate looking than the others. The metallic resin does a great job on her hair and loincloth. The base of this Queen piece looks great as well; it depicts a rather wicked looking scale of justice as its masthead. This issue tells the story of Barbara Minerva, who abandons humanity in order to become the animal she truly is. With a bite powerful enough to pierce the skin of a Kryptonian, Cheetah is no push over and is definitely the correct Queen for the dark side of the chess board.
Ocean Master comes in at No.54 as a pawn. This issue features the cover art of one of the Villain Issues I enjoyed the most last year. This is not the way we know Aquaman’s half-brother. Orm is no longer empowered through the use of technology. This rendition sees him as a proud Atlantean that has disdain for surface dwellers and his brother for sympathizing with them. This issue features some great art from the pages of Aquaman, one of the most successful re-boots of the New 52. The chess piece looks great. Ocean Master looks more like a warrior and less like a B-list villain. He strikes a pose that looks powerful, as if he were using his power to draw a tidal wave with one hand whilst holding a villainous looking trident in the other. The paint applications and colour scheme used on his cape add a great finish that complements the costume well.
The sculpt on pawn piece No. 56 is just amazing. The amount of detail in The Savage Hawkman design is represented well. As you can imagine, this costume flourishes thanks to the metallic resin used to paint these figures. Unlike the other figures in this collection, The Savage Hawkman wields some excellent accessories in the form of a giant axe and a very intimidating clawed gauntlet. Hawkman’s costume contains so many intricate details which are captured well on this figure. The only thing that could have made this great chess piece look greater is if they gave his whited out eyes some pupils. This issue tells us more about Katar Hol, aka Carter Hall, Thangar’s traitor. It tells a great story, one that is backed up by some stellar images of Hawkman, his enemies and his allies. No. 56 is a great visual experience that shares the rich history of a true warrior.
The greatest Red Lantern, Atrocitus, is piece No.57. He takes the takes the role of Bishop for the bad guys. This is definitely the issue that taught me the most as I am not a close follower of the Green Lantern franchise. The origins of Atrocitus tell a great story of vengeance and the boiling rage that comes with it. Atrocitus is the first Red Lantern fueled by a fiery rage that burns within; he hates the Guardians of the Universe – the very Guardians that had not guarded his people from the robotic Manhunters. All the red spread across the pages of this issue is simply great and so is the chess piece! Atrocitus stands taller than some of the other pieces. He holds the Red Power battery in one hand and shows off his power ring with the other. His face looks menacing and his metallic pupils highlight his burning rage. He makes for one great looking Red Lantern and one even greater chess piece!
Last but not least, we have the White Rook, piece No. 58 Cyborg. Cyborg is without a doubt becoming one of DC’s more popular characters. We are seeing this half man half machine pop up in many comic and animation cross overs these days. It is only fitting that he get a chess piece of his own. The figure looks great. As you can imagine the detail is impeccable as Cyborg requires lots of paneling and subtle variations in paint colours. He really blends well with the rook base, creating a powerful looking piece. Of course, the rook is just that… a power piece. The cover art on the magazine/book looks powerful and shows off a great image of Cyborg. The issue does a great job of explaining who this character is whilst illustrating and demonstrating his importance to the Justice League.
The DC Chess Collection is definitely one worth investing in. This is a great product of the highest quality. This series gives you knowledge of both the DC universe and the game of chess. And knowledge is power! So empower your chess board with these superpower pieces for the low cost of R89.95 per issue. Some things are timeless, just like the DC Chess Collection!
Win an Eaglemoss Ocean Master Chess Piece!
As always, all you need to do is share this page on Facebook (your wall) or Twitter and then leave a comment below (in the comments section on this page) telling us which issue features Orm! The Giveaway/Competition closes Tuesday – 8th July 2014 at 12:00am. The Giveaway is restricted to South African readers who like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter only and cannot be exchanged for cash. Terms and conditions/Site Disclaimer rules apply.