I know what you’re thinking: what the heck are those things? If you don’t frequent comic shops (and maybe even if you do), this might be the first time you’re getting a peek at Diamond’s Vinimates. And you might be thinking what the heck?

The rapid evolution of taste

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I’m going to shoot straight: when I first saw these things in Diamond’s Previews catalogue, I thought they were gross. Why would anybody want these? I wondered, to nobody in particular. But then a funny thing happened: I saw one in the flesh at a Walgreens, and I became curious. And I realized that a similar thing happened with me and another immensely popular vinyl collectible. A short time later, Diamond was good enough to ship out a variety for me to check out, and I’ve got to say: these little buggers are growing on me. Let’s take a look at what they sent.

Justice League and Wonder Woman

The coolest thing about any heavily-stylized collectible is seeing how details translate from the subject to the collectible. Most of the detail in these Vinimates comes courtesy of the paint jobs, which are excellently-dome and do a great job of evoking their film counterparts. The Justice League set features a variety of interesting poses, and the 3D detail—like Batman’s utility belt or Wonder Woman’s tiara—are super-cool, too.

This fierce-looking warrior instantly evokes Diana’s time on Themyscira in the Wonder Woman film, and it’s chock full of great detail, as well. Her shield has nice, misshapen edges, her skirt has some dimension to it, and her pony tail looks very much like what we saw in the film.

DC Comics

This is where things get really cool. Take a look at that Rebirth Batman (although, if we want to get technical, it really came about a few issues from the end of The New 52). Great facial expression, yellow outline on the bat, comics-perfect utility belt, purple inside to the cape—it’s an awesome translation of what we see in the comics lately. Green Lantern Hal Jordan is similarly very modern-looking, and his facial expression is such a dead ringer for Hal that I’m not sure you could do better taking a page from a comic. Superman is going in a different direction, with a very classic-looking suit that just looks fantastic. Up, up, and away!

But for me, the real, totally-unexpected stars of the show are these guys:

I absolutely love that Joker (love that Joker!), from his oh-so-Jokerly grin to his accurate duds to that splendid hat atop his evil brow. And as little as I care for Harley in most comics today, I’ve got to say, this little figure is outstanding. She’s got a great expression, awesome hair, and CHECK. OUT. THAT. MALLET:

Thats a fine piece of hardware right there.

Ugly beauty

Vinimates look funky, but that’s no accident. And I bet if you find a few on your desk, they’ll grow on you like they grew on me, and the funkiness will end up being a big part of the appeal. These film and comics figures are great, detail-rich collectibles, and they won’t break the bank. You can find them for about ten bucks at comic shops, Walgreens, and elsewhere. Go get some.

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