Let’s face it: when most of you first saw Koto’s Ikemen line, you groaned. Sexy Jason Todd, Awkwardly-Handsome Tim Drake, Bruce Wang—you know what I’m talking about. To be fair, the line isn’t likely aimed at me, and maybe not at you, either. But still, right?
One of the things I love about writing for this site is access. I get to read books, go to conventions, and check out merchandise that I would not otherwise be able to afford. Perhaps the greatest thing about this access is that I have the opportunity to challenge my gut reactions, and in many cases, I find that they don’t hold up. It’s happened with lots of comics, and it’s even happened with merch, too.
So when our Koto rep mentioned having the Red Robin Ikemen statue available for review, I jumped at the chance. Here is something that I thought looked undesirable (in part because it was trying so hard to look desirable). But what if I took a closer look?
Winking Timmy, Hidden Robin
The Ikemen line takes well-known male characters and turns them into handsome anime heroes. When you pick up Red Robin, you’re looking at him unmasked and winking. He knows what he’s about, and you know what he’s about, and he knows you know that he knows what he’s about and that he knows that you know what he’s about.
If this were all there was to the statue, I would stand by my original impression: not for me. But take Tim out of the package, and you’ll see that he comes with an alternate, non-winking face, and—here’s the kicker—an alternate head featuring the black cowl that you would expect in this pre-New 52 iteration of the Red Robin costume. Install this head, and what you have is actually a really nice Red Robin statue. The sculpt—crotch bumps notwithstanding—is excellent, the paint is excellent, and it wouldn’t look at all out of place on a shelf with Koto’s New 52 Justice League statues (though the flatter paint here is far superior to the shiny stuff on those).
As if that weren’t enough, the Koto-standard magnetic base features the iconic Red Robin emblem, as well.
Koto’s Ikemen line may be intended for an audience seeking a more man-candy take on Batman and his family, but this Red Robin manages to do something else, as well: it gives the long-suffering fans of the most under-appreciated Robin a high-quality statue commemorating a moment in his history that isn’t often captured in collectibles. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but if you’re a fan of Tim Drake, you should scoop this up while you still can.
DISCLAIMER: Batman News received this statue from Kotobukiya for the purpose of review.
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