Best Figure I Got Last Month – 2|09
March 9, 2009

Its about time that a figure from the line that drew me to the Action Figure Insider forums makes my "Best Figure of the Month" list. That’s not to say there hasn’t been some sweet JLU figures the last few months. There has. I still look at figures like Atomic Skull, Deadman, Vibe, Captain Atom and Wonder Pig and grin. But this month not only is the figure cool but so is the way we got it. In my humble opinion, this figure represents a milestone for the adult collector community.


WHO: Scarecrow
WHAT: Justice League Unlimited – Gotham City Criminals 4 pack  |  Fan Collection  |  Mattel
HOW: $9.63 ($30 for 4 pack + $8.55 for shipping = $38.55 total ÷ 4.)

WHY: Any time a Justice League Unlimited figure gets new tooling beyond a new head its a big deal. Here we have a figure with new arms, a new trench coat, a walking stick, and a noose tie! Despite the newly sculpted additions this figure fits in perfectly with our ever growing JLU collection. The figure is definitely on model. But like many of the figures in this line its the subtle details that elevate this guy: the spots on the hands, the ragged ends and little holes in the coat, the posture, the way the hand is sculpted to hold the stick.

The JLU Scarecrow wins "favorite figure of the month" also for the way in which it is procured. I attended the Mattel panel at last summer’s San Diego Comic Con when was announced. I had been starting to feel like the action figure winds were finally blowing in the adult collector’s direction. Sure, we were acknowledged by much of the industry but the big guys, especially Mattel, were kinda slow to catch on. I remember thinking as I sat in that panel: "We’ve arrived. Its the year of the collector."

Randy Falk had made a comment at one of the other panes that Toys R Us was turning more collector friendly with their half isle of Mezco, NECA, and McFarlane product. Hasbro seemed to have quietly recognized the adult collectors with things like their 25th Anniversary G.I. Joe line. And here was Mattel announcing an online store where product created especially for the collector community would be available.

This Gotham’s Criminals JLU 4 pack is the first Justice League offering from besides the SDCC Giganta exclusive and the figure stands. When you factor in shipping the cost of the figures is relatively high but there’s just something to be said about not having to worry about whether or not you’ll find these on the pegs. And who doesn’t like getting a box of figures in the mail?


Although Scarecrow didn’t actually show up in the Justice League Unlimited cartoon the design for this character wasn’t pulled out of thin air. Scarecrow’s design comes straight from his portrayal in Batman: The Animated Series. The character started out looking like a more traditional scarecrow but the consensus was that he wasn’t really too scary. So Bruce Timm evolved his look. He describes it as "Texas Chainsaw Massacre Leather Face in Western preacher clothes." He adds: "It had nothing to do with being a scarecrow, per se, but it was definitely scary." Jeffrey Combs nailed the character with his voice acting and later went on to assume the mantle of The Question in Justice League Unlimited.


Well, if nothing more, I love adding new characters to my Justice League Unlimited case. That suckers getting pretty full! I’m amazed that its 6 years ago that I bought my first Justice League figure. Who could have predicted the collection that exists today?


Danny "CantinaDan" Neumann
Action figure anthropologist, Professor Cantina Dan Neumann has been a scholastic contributor to the online community studying the complex world of parumplasticus populus {little plastic people} since the turn of this millenium. His primary focus is the visual cataloging of species exhibits through photo-journalism.
Read other articles by Danny "CantinaDan" Neumann.





  • j1h15233 says:

    Bravo! Great blog about a great action figure. I almost wish I had bought two so I could play with one of them while the other one sits on the shelf attempting to scare Batman. Of course, what he doesn’t know is that I have 3 different Batman figures lurking to take him down hahaha.

    Can’t wait for even more new JLU. I haven’t bought a new character at retail since November!

  • xrmc20 says:

    Another great one. I really like the way you design your blogs.

    Let’s just hope that these 4 packs on matty sell really well and keep it going for a long time.

  • stcardinal says:

    Ahh I was wondering where that design came from. Thanks.

  • ZAXILLA2 says:

    cool review for a great figure! I like how you factored in the cost of shipping into the final cost of the figure, as most people don’t do that. Mattel really did a great job with this figure. I can’t wait for more!

  • While my favorite from the set was Harley, the character I’ve been begging ToyGuru (and Boy Wonder before him) to work into JLU since I joined this site, Scarecrow is definitely a very close second. Mattel really knocked it out of the park with him.

  • Newton says:

    Good little review there. I really need to crack my Scarecrow out. I haven’t even looked at the new JLU guys much. But I’m very glad to have them in my collection.

  • Jason says:

    Without a doubt this is my new favorite figure too. I loved Batman the Animated Series and always regretted not seeing this version of the Scarecrow done by Hasbro. Now that Mattel has gotten this and a new Bane figure out, I am extremely appreciative. I would love to see some more justice done to Gotham Criminals by Mattel. No pun intended. Maybe a new Killer Croc version, or perhaps a new Riddler figure. The more Batman the Animated Series figures I see in the JLU, the better.

  • jeff says:

    This showed up in my mailbox last week and was accompanied by a complete joygasm. Mattel is really outdoing themselves with their DC love, and I will continue to gobble it up like the sweet dessert that it is. Thanks Matty!

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