Monday, 27 September 2010

#270 of 365 Superman Man of Steel Steel

I'm not a Superman fan.  So I have no idea about Steel other than the fact that he's an African American who has a suit of steel, and I think his last name is also Steel.  He came to prominence in the Reign of Superman storyline after the Death of Superman storyline and was one of the 4 Supermen then.  He's since grown on to be his own chracter, and represents the AA community on DC comics alongside such greats as Mr. Terrific, John Stewart and Static.  He was even a member of the Justice League at one point.

This Steel, or Blast Hammer Steel, comes on the old Kenner Superman Man of Steel card.  I get a bit nostalgic when I see the Kenner logo these days, particularly on an unopened toy.  Oh well, time moves on, and Hasbro's green logo does not hold up a light to the Kenner blue.  But I digress.

The card has the Superman logo near the top, and a clear all round bubble, with the title card inserted inside the bubble near the bottom.  The back of the card shows the other figures of the line.  But where are the action features?

Kenner wisely decided to put the action features on the title card, and to hide it underneath the bubble.  That's an interesting move, but it makes it harder to find the action feature, especially when it's not on the back of the card.

Like the toys of the era, this Steel has a trading card (so that would peg it as early to mid nineties).  The artwork (or to be more precise, the background of the artwork) is bland and the pose of the figure is static.  But these pin-ups are a way for up and coming artists to practise their pin-ups skills.

Out of the package, the figure comes iwth a shield and two hammers.  The hammers can be inserted into the (non-removable) launcher mounted on Steel's right forearms and fired thanks to an inbuilt spring.  The shield is of a weird shape, and has Superman's logo on it.

The figure itself is rather generic, but it does capture the look of the figure rather well.  The flowing cape is made of a really soft plastic which gives the figure a rather good aesthetic.  The silver on the body is actually vacmetal and is shiny.  Even the black of the body seems to be made of some sort of vacmetal, and lends to the overall illusion that Steel is really made of Steel.  This Steel has limited articulation, as befits a toy of its era, but one area where Kenner added a point of articulation was on the shield arm, just below the elbow.  It twists and allows the shield to be displayed in a number of different ways, which is definitely interesting.

The surprising thing is that this figure is even in the same scale as the JLU, but is a lot muscular than the straight lines of the JLU figures.  The definitely do not make toys like this these days, which is a pity.


  1. Classic!

    I remember the first time I walked into Toys R Us and saw this line on the pegs. I couldn't believe it! After years of buying Kenner's Batman figures, they finally had a Superman line!

  2. This figure peg warmed here and I pick him up for cheap. He's a lesser known character that I was glad that they showed in a few eps of JLU.

  3. He's really cool! I've always liked Steel. I've always wanted to watch the movie with Shaq, but I've only seen clips. I hear it's terrible, but I still want to see it!

    Vacmetal makes some figures look amazing! Like this one...and Entrapta. :D

    I also miss awesome trading cards with action figures! That was always the best part of getting the X-Men in the 90's.

  4. Minicomics was an 80s thing, Trading Cards was a 90s thing. The Noughties is super duper articulation. I wonder what will be the thing for the next decade...

  5. Ever watch the movie Small Soldiers? That's what's coming. lol

  6. I'd wish toys would take over the world, but alas! Maybe we'd get a holographic projector with every toy in the next decade or so. Who knows?

  7. That would be cool...not the world take-over part. lol

    My dream as a little boy was to have fully articulated action figures without showing joints that could be radio-controlled. :D

  8. Are you saying that you've given up that dream? That would be cool though!

  9. Nah, I just think it's still far away. lol

  10. Well, maybe one day. Little baby steps :)


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