DC Multiverse (Ares Wave): Collect & Connect Ares by Mattel

It’s Friday evening and I’m ready to collapse after a long work week. But before I dive head first into a bottle of Jameson, let’s wrap up DC Friday with one more review for today. If you hadn’t noticed, I’ve peppered my other reviews of this assortment of Wonder Woman movie figures with my general feelings about the film, but to sum it up here: I loved the first half, didn’t care so much for the second half, and felt that the final act really let the whole film down. It started with such lofty goals and excellent character presentation only to fizzle out with a disappointing and shitty CGI mess and it deserved so much better. By the time the final battle with Ares came, I was pretty drunk, very sleepy, and barely even paying attention. And so I give you the star of that disappointing denouement: Ares.

Ares is the first Collect & Connect figure from the DC Multiverse line that I’ve actually completed. Oh, I’ve done plenty from DC Universe Classics, and as such this one felt very abbreviated. Only four figures? Really??? That’s easy enough. Yes, despite still consisting of seven parts and a sword, Mattel doubled up on a lot of them to give us the whole figure in just four installments, with extra accessories coming bundled with the two Toys R Us Exclusive figures, which I’ll review next week. Putting this guy together is pretty simple, and the pieces fit tightly enough that I wouldn’t want to have to take him apart again.

As for the design, well… it’s certainly interesting. He looks like an armored terror that stepped right out of the pages of an AD&D manual, and that’s cool. But he’s also a far cry from how I’m used to seeing DC’s Ares depicted. This guy is a mix of human, demon, and armor, all blended together. He’s got regular looking hands and feet, as well as normal musculature running through the bare parts of his arms, but all cast in dark plastic. The chiseled chest features a bit more of metallic blue sheen to it, making me uncertain as to whether that’s supposed to be him or just armor, or maybe the armor is part of him. He has a similar finish on his grieves, arm bracers, and shoulder plates, as well as a sculpted black pelt thrown over his shoulder and secured with a strap. It looks as if there are sculpted keys hanging on the cross strap. Overall, the painted blue metal effect is cool, and there’s some nice pitted texturing on some of the armor, but I don’t find the design to be terribly compelling. The proportions are also a little wonky, like his legs seem a little weak and atrophied for his upper body.

The head is nearly featureless and hidden under the large demonic skull. Again, this is a pretty cool effect and I dig how at first glance it looks like the skull is actually his head and not just a helmet. The skull itself features a chalky blue paint job with white teeth and a pretty intricate sculpt showing all sorts of crags and bumps. It certainly makes for an intimidating look.

The articulation has all the right points. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders and elbows, as well as swivels in the biceps and wrists. The legs are ball jointed at the hips, hinged at the knees and ankles, and have swivels at the thighs. The torso features a swivel at the waist, a ball joint in the chest, and a ball joint in the neck. It’s all pretty good, except for a super loose swivel in my figure’s right thigh. It’s bad enough that it will sometimes give way, especially in wide stances.

Ares includes one accessory (so far), and that’s his sword and I really dig it a lot. It isn’t ornate or gaudy, nor does it look ceremonial. Instead it looks like a utilitarian rank-and-file tool for butchering enemies, just like I would expect the God of War to wield. The hilt looks like it’s meant to be forged out of simple iron, with a turned grip and a down sweeping cross guard. The blade features a fairly sharp taper and most of it is washed in red paint. I’m not sure if that’s supposed to be blood, or maybe it’s glowing with heat, but either way it looks pretty bad ass. Of course, there are some more accessories to give him, but we’ll have to wait until I open up this wave’s two TRU Exclusive figures next week to look at those.

Despite my feelings for the DCEU version of Ares and that final battle in Wonder Woman, I have to say that I still dig this figure. Of course, individual mileage may vary based on personal opinions about the character design they went with. It’s also only fair to note that the DC Universe Classics Ares figure is one of my all time favorite releases in that line and was a very tough act for this Ares to follow. I can’t say that he would have been worth chasing in order to build on his own, but luckily I was pretty happy with the figures in this assortment, so Ares was just a cool extra.

3 comments on “DC Multiverse (Ares Wave): Collect & Connect Ares by Mattel

  1. I guess I have to at least thank Mattel for two week’s worth of extra DC Friday content, but yeah . . . completely agree with your take on the film. It felt like a Disney movie, which is fine but admittedly works on charm more than narrative drive. I love the cast pretty much except Ares, whose character gave poor David Thewlis absolutely zilch to work with. Hopefully the end of JL points toward more comic-booky villains for future films instead of all these giant CGI demon dudes.

    • I’ve got some DC Collectibles ready to go, so I hope to mix it up a bit after I wrap this wave up next week.

      Having a bitch of a time finding Multiverse Justice League Flash for a decent price. He’s the only one I’m missing from the Steppenwolf Wave. Don’t know why that one is so hard to find, but scalpers are having a field day with him.

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