McFarlane Toy’s Three Jokers Are The Best Batman Toys Yet

Black Label Event Series three jokers by Geoff Johns, Jason Fabok, Brad Anderson and Rob Leigh has been one of the main DC Comics events of the past decade. Building a Surprise Plot Element from 2015 Darkseid Warhe saw the Bat Family come up against the existence of (what else?) Three Jokers.

It makes sense that the event would also spawn a line of action figures from McFarlane Toys, which CBR sent for review. While many of these figures are characters that McFarlane Toys has already covered in some way, three jokers is easily one of the most visually impressive waves the DC Multiverse lineup has ever seen. However, that doesn’t mean its flaws aren’t glaring.

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Clown Princes of Crime

Crowning the line are the three titular Jokers, and one of them could easily be the de facto toy shelf representation of the iconic Harlequin of Hate. Three distinct eras of the Joker are captured here, all using similar bodies with unique clothing sculpts, heads, and accessories. Dressed in a surprisingly vibrant pinkish-red coat and purple pants, the Clown is a standout surprise here. He also has the most traditionally deranged head sculpt of the three, not to mention the most efficient movement, thanks to the way his coat is designed. He’s such a dynamic and energetic figure that’s at home with any Batman screen.

That’s not to understate the other numbers in the lineup, though. The Criminal is a brooding, older take on Joker, and he cuts a suitably dark figure. Although he’s built with the same body as the other two, the dark, regal purple suit and sulky face create a much more restrained Joker feeling. The paint is beautifully applied to the face, although the shadow on the eyes is a bit too dark for our taste.

Of course, the one every collector clamors for is The Comedian. Listening The killer joke, the figure looks downright terrifying with glowing white pupils poking out from the shadow of the felt. The purple cloak is impeccably sculpted, adding great layer and depth, even if it means it’s hard to lay your arms flat at her sides.

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As showcases for this line, the three Jokers are easily some of McFarlane’s finest work. It’s a shame that the props are so few (the comedian comes with a camera and a crowbar, the clown with a laughing fish and a crowbar, and the criminal with just a cane), but the fact that the figures are so distinct from each other shows just how good McFarlane Toys is. is to use a similar body to create several unique characters.

A whole new family of bats

On the opposite end of the spectrum, you have the Bat family. These are still some of the best versions of these characters McFarlane Toys have released, but they feel like they’re missing something compared to the Jokers.

Red Hood clearly stands out here. Other McFarlane Red Hoods have been good, but this version of Jason Todd’s appearance goes above and beyond. It helps a lot that this is easily the best Red Hood design in the comics. The coat is a beautifully made mix of materials with a harder plastic used to sculpt the hood. The helmet itself has a wonderfully shiny sheen that makes it pop and a scowl that lets you know Jason means business.

The biggest downside to this stellar Red Hood is the same issue that plagues other McFarlane Toys figures like Peacemaker and Bloodsport: no guns. It’s a shame too, considering how important Jason’s use of firearms was to three jokers and that the figure is clearly sculpted to hold rifles akimbo. Our understanding is that it’s a licensing issue that prevents the figures from being released with firearms, so it’s not McFarlane Toys’ fault, but it’s still quite disappointing.

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Batgirl is also one of Babs’ best renditions to date, and in a beautiful take on her classic costume, no less. Unfortunately, she gets hit with the side eye which has been a problem with the line lately. Batgirl is dynamic and beautifully sculpted, but she doesn’t stand a chance if the problem isn’t on her left side. The Batarang she comes with looks great posed like she’s getting ready to throw it, at least.

The family is completed by the requisite figure of Batman, who is, oddly enough, the weakest figure in his own line. It’s not necessarily a hit, mind you. The figure is beautiful and perfectly represents Fabok’s Batsuit design, an updated hybrid version of the 1989. Batman costume and the then current New 52 look. The silhouette looks and feels great; he’s a gorgeous, chunky Batman with real heft that towers over the other characters in the line. Yet something about it – whether it’s the design, the more standard pose, or the costume’s fairly simple look – just doesn’t come across as strong next to the awesome Red Hood and Batgirl designs. Against any other lineup, this Batman would likely stand out; in this wave, he feels like the workhorse of the line.

Unfortunately, these numbers are also light on accessories. Red Hood only includes her crowbar, while Batgirl comes with a Batarang and grappling hook launcher. Batman has what appears to be an oversized version of the grappling hook launcher from the comics (which was based on the one from Batman ’89) with a giant handle. They look good, but Batman and Batgirl’s grappling hook launchers don’t appear to be to scale.

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Should you buy the McFarlane Toys Batman: Three Jokers Wave?

Luckily for the savvy collector, the figurines hold up well. We found no significant QA issues, although the numbers aren’t necessarily perfect. Batgirl’s head came off from the pressure of the cape and the hair held back by the packaging, but it came back right away and held up even when we tested the figure’s joints. Batman has looser joints than we’d like (and maybe that’s the one we got), which is a problem for him; he has just enough heft to topple over in certain poses. Yet once we locked him into a pose, he was rock solid.

With these in mind, this still looks like a must-have line for Batman fans, especially if you liked three jokers or find perfect versions of these characters for your shelf. There have been more than a fair share of these figures released, but these designs are truly amazing, and McFarlane Toys has done a spectacular job of capturing their plastic tone. The Jokers and Red Hood are some of the best we’ve seen, but if you’re looking for a Batman and Batgirl to add to your collection, you can’t go wrong with these builds.

DC Multiverse – Batman: The Three Jokers Action Figures from McFarlane Toys are available to pre-order now for an MSRP of $19.99. CBR has received these products for review by the manufacturer.

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