Negative Man

It's a slow year for me, which means that buying toys has taken a back seat to things like eating and paying for electricity. Since I've blown my wad for the next few months on the Modern Nickelodeon and Classic Collection Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles figures, we're gonna go over some of the older figures that I never got around to reviewing.

In light of that announcement, here we have DC Universe Classics (DCUC) Negative Man.

According to the bio on the back of the package:

Larry Trainor's career as a test pilot ended tragically when he flew through a radiation field. The accident caused his body to emit deadly radiation that can only be contained by shielded bandages as well as the ability to release from his body a negatively charged phantom. Trainor became a founding member of the Doom Patrol with other heroes who gained their powers from tragic accidents.

According to the Wikipedia article on him, Negative man first appeared in DC's My Greatest Adventure #80 back in June of 1963. His powers are basically flight, making things go ka-blooey, and phasing through objects when he's in the phantom form, which looks like a shadow that glows. He is part of the Doom Patrol, a superhero team that first appeared in the same book he did.

Cover of Doom Patrol Vol.1 #124 (July 1969) with art by Bob Brown

The title sounds like some thing I might like to read one day. The characters were all ordinary people who came by their powers by accident and who now find themselves ostracized as "freaks" because of them. Despite that, they decide that they still have to use their powers for the good of mankind, and eventually, in the last issue of their first series, sacrifice their lives to that purpose.

That sounds like a pretty good hook to me.

Package of DCUC Negative Man from  Mattel

The packaging of Negative man is one of those included in the celebration of DC Comics' 75th anniversary. From Wave 12 to 15 of the toy line, Mattel included a special "Collector's Button" that featured art from DC Comics. He also came with the staff and right arm to this series Collect and Connect figure, Trigon.

Seeing as how I have no idea who Trigon is, coupled with the fact that those buttons are a pretty lame gimmick in my opinion, I'm rather glad I bought this figure loose rather than fresh off the shelf. He retails for something like Php 1,300 or Php 1,500. I can't remember the current price as the local distributor has had to hike up the price a lot due to low demand and smaller orders. I picked it up for around Php 300.00 or so off the secondary market a year or two ago.

I do regret never getting some of the other figures in the series, though, like Diana Troy, Cheetah (I wanted the naked modern version, but I never found one that wasn't damaged at a good price), and Superboy.

Out of the box, he looks pretty fantastic.

Mattel used the smaller version of the male DCUC body for most of him, except for a new head and hands (I'm not sure if they've had to change his lower legs and torso though, to accommodate his boots and belt). I'm find with that, since all of the male bodies that the Four Horsemen sculpted for the toy line are fantastically superhero-y, with great proportion, definition, and articulation. Since there isn't too much going on with the character's costume, it's an easy adjustment.

You had two options when you got this figure: either the bandaged or un-bandaged variants. I'm not sure what the ratio was at the time of release, but I remember the availability for both variants being good at the time I purchased him. I always did hate it when one version (usually the better one) was shortpacked compared to the others.

I decided on the unmasked version, just because I thought it had a lot more character.

DC Universe Classics released 2 other members of the team with the exclusive Imperiex series of figures (Wave 10), which I happen to have bought. Unfortunately, I sold Beast Boy before I did the write up for these guys, so all I've got to team him up with now is Robotman. I guess it's not so bad, since I'm not really a big fan of the team anyway. I just love the way they both look. Like I said... superhero-y.

The articulation of the DCUC line has always been great. The figures have never had as much range as their Toy Biz counterparts in the Marvel Legends line, but they've got enough to give you a lot of play value and display options, which is what I look for.


There is a ball jointed head, swivel-hinged shoulders, swivel biceps, hinged elbows, swivel wrists, a hinged torso, swivel waist, the standard, DCUC T-crotch swivel/hinge combination, hinged knees, and hinged ankles. In addition to the functional articulation set, the DCUC male bodies are well-balanced, with footprints of a size that make it relatively easy to find a sweet spot that will allow your toy to stand on it's own, without the aid of a figure stand.

Which of course, makes it that much more fun to pose.

One of the things I didn't really realize when I took these photos (it was a while back now) is that his face is actually removable. The face is made of translucent material and underneath it is a sculpted skull. You can actually see the skull under the clear plastic in the right light, but I had no idea it was made to come off. It's a tight fit, but if you get a thin, flat surface and wiggle things around a bit, you can take his face off just like Nicolas Cage in that John Woo movie (was that really 15 years ago?).

Since I didn't know about this, I don't have photos of it, but you can check out OAFE's review of the figure, or the gallery at to see what it looks like: which is FUCKING AWESOME!

I can't wait to go home, dig this sucker up and pull off his face. It's almost as good a gimmick as Robotman's naked brain.

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