We asked. You answered.
Maybe because it was decades of waiting but I can never get enough Batman ’66 swag — and by the looks of it, neither can you. A few weeks ago, I noted that NJ Croce — makers of the finest bendable figs in the biz — wanted to hear from fans about what they’d like to see next.
Now, to recap, we’ve gotten seven main figures so far: Batman, Robin, Batgirl, Joker, Penguin, Catwoman (Newmar) and the Riddler. There’s also been a Batmobile that comes with two smaller-scale Batman and Robin figures, as well as three keychains: Batman, Robin and Batmobile in miniature.
That leaves an awful lot of space for growth and your responses did not disappoint. So here are 13 QUICK THOUGHTS on what you’re looking for:
1. King Tut, funky Tut. Far and away, readers wanted to see that rotund royal of the River Nile — Victor Buono’s King Tut. I was surprised, actually, but pleased nonetheless. I’ve gone on record many times about my own appreciation of this classic TV-only villain.
2. Mr. Freeze and Bookworm also got a lot of requests. So if I were advising NJ Croce, I’d tell them these three are the next three they should seriously consider. (Though I’m not a huge Bookworm fan myself.)
3. After that it was Alfred, the Mad Hatter and Egghead. But this was hardly scientific, so really, these are the half dozen that people have on their minds. As one reader said, you’ve “got to have Alfred to keep the place clean and answer the Batphone and help Batgirl keep her cover.”
4. You are looking for variants, or at least some specific ones: Catwoman without mask, Riddler with mask, and Riddler in suit and tie.
5. Eartha Kitt’s Catwoman also received support. To me, she’s a no-brainer because she’s in the license and nobody save HeroClix has done her yet.
6. Not everyone understands that there are limits to which actors’ likenesses can be used. All of the major characters are accounted for in the master license, except for Madge Blake’s Aunt Harriet and Neil Hamilton’s Commissioner Gordon. Unless something changes — and at this point I don’t see it happening — you’ll have to do without.
7. But guess which unavailable characters were requested the most? Clock King and False Face. Clock King was more popular than I anticipated. But also mentioned multiple times were, in rough order, Marsha Queen of Diamonds (and her aunt, in one case!); Jill St. John Robin; Minstrel, Archer, John Astin Riddler, Ma Parker, Chandell. Green Hornet and Kato would be very popular too. Maybe NJ Croce should work out a deal with Factory Entertainment …
8. But False Face presents an intriguing idea. Since False Face routinely wears a translucent mask, we don’t see actor Malachi Throne’s face. I wonder whether this might present a loophole in the license. The Throne estate owns the actor’s likeness but I cannot imagine they have a claim to the character’s appearance. Since FF is such a cult figure in Batcircles, some enterprising merchandiser might be able to do something with this…
9. Personally, I’d like Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson. I think a killer box set would be Wayne, Grayson, Alfred and Barbara Gordon — with a variant of some sort: Maybe Pink Cowl Batman?
10. A decent number of people requested Chief O’Hara. To me, it’s weird having him without Commissioner Gordon. It’s like having a Robin figure without Batman. I really do wonder why Hamilton’s estate is not involved.
11. Vehicles: A Batmobile scaled to the regular-size heroes. A Batcycle too.
12. One reader’s suggestion: “As a ‘box set’ kind of collector, I’d like to see a set of figurines made up of characters that are available only on single cards at the moment. As a bonus (i.e.: to annoy collectors), maybe include a new character like Bookworm or King Tut.” Those card-only characters are Riddler and Batgirl, for those keeping score…
13. An idea I whole-heartedly endorse: “Two-pack of henchmen with different (outfits) reflecting the major villain. Just a thought.” I am so down with this because the likenesses don’t matter. You could have a GOON and a Catwoman henchman. So cool.