SDCC08 Review: Wizkids DC Heroclix 2008 Convention Exclusive Sinestro Corps Anti-Monitor
An evil long thought destroyed lives again...
by Scott Rubin
For fans of the DC Comics Universe, the Anti-Monitor was like a boogeyman for over twenty years. Way back in 1985 he was the universe-destroying villain of the landmark maxi-series Crisis on Infinite Earths. Due to the meddling of a rogue scientist, the beginning of the universe spawned an anti-universe at the same time. The Anti-Monitor became its ruler, gobbling up alternate realities to fuel his awful power. It took the combined might of hundreds of heroes to bring his reign of terror to an end, at terrible cost. Finally, he was defeated personally by Superman of Earth 2, never to be seen again...
Until during the 2005 series Infinite Crisis the exposed villain Alex Luthor attempted to re-create the Earth using a massive machine composed of elements from different realities. The centerpiece of the device was none other than the corpse of the Anti-Monitor, somehow preserved all this time. At the end of the series the machine was destroyed, and the Anti-Monitor disappeared again, but this for only a short time.
2007 brought the greatest threat the Green Lantern Corps had ever faced, the Sinestro Corps. Armed with Yellow Power Rings from the anti-matter universe, the "Sinestros" viciously attacked the Lanterns and Earth, attempting to access the hidden 52 parallel worlds. The Sinestro Corps had a Guardian of its own, the resurrected Anti-Monitor. This Guardian of Fear faced off against Earth's heroes once more, and was finally laid low by Superman-Prime, crash landing on a barren planet where he was swallowed up by the new Black Lantern Power Battery.
Up until recently, there had only been one figure made of the great villain Anti-Monitor. This was an action figure in DC Direct's Crisis on Infinite Earths Series 2. The figure was... let's say less than impressive, with a bland pose that accentuated its strange and very top-heavy body proportions. Thankfully, Wizkids has offered an alternative for those of us wishing to own one of the most powerful supervillains of all time.
For those of you unfamiliar with the Heroclix line from Wizkids, it's an ingenious miniatures game with all of the greatest characters from both Marvel and DC Comics. Each figure stands atop a rotating "clix" base that turns to reveal statistics and powers. Whether you play the game or not, Heroclix provided an excellent way to get small-scale figures of hundreds of comic book characters, many of whom were too obscure to warrant full-size action figures!
Last year Wizkids released an Anti-Monitor battle pack featuring the menace from the classic 1985 series. It was relatively hard to find, but well worth it. The "colossal"-scale figure had a great sculpt, an LED light-up effect, and plenty of neat bonuses. While it was certainly cool, a character more than twenty years old will only generate so much excitement. And that's exactly what the fans felt when Wizkids announced its 2008 Convention Exclusive, a re-deco of the already awesome figure representing its Sinestro Corps affiliation!
In this day and age of window and fifth panel boxes, it's sometimes refreshing when a company goes in a different direction. And so it is with the Anti-Monitor box, a black monolith with nary a window in sight. It's minimalist in regards to color, with a grayscale plus yellow palette that's striking and oddly creepy at the same time. The front of the box advertises it as the "2008 Convention Figure" and has the figure's name along with the DC Heroclix logo. The front shares an image of the character with the next, similar, side, making a cool effect when looking at the corner or two boxes side by side. The back of the box has all of the pertinent information, along with a photograph of the figure.
The Anti-Monitor stands just over seven inches tall atop his specially designed base representing the rubble of his anti-universe stronghold. The tyrant, a monster encased in full environmental armor, is posed eagerly reaching forward. Whether he's about to strike down yet another hero or absorb the life energy of a planet is up to you.
Anti-Monitor's sculpt is very good, and benefits from the relative simplicity of the character's design. The armor's main body and upper limbs are banded with deep lines, and the fingers are sculpted with tons of segments. The large boots, armor plating, and environmental piping is all thick and heavy. Finally, the Anti-Monitor's face is intricately sculpted with concave eyes and the whale-like upper teeth. The base, too, is very nicely done.
Colors on the Anti-Monitor are bold and strong. The monster's main body is silver, along with the upper arms, legs, and hands. The large boots, forearms, waist, and cowl are a deep blue, while the remaining hoses and pipes are bright yellow. On the Anti-Monitor's chest is a yellow panel with the Sinestro Corps logo in white and black. The tyrant's face is primarily translucent clear plastic, the perfect compliment to the figure's special feature.
The Anti-Monitor is non-articulated, but he does have a cool special feature. Press the small button on the back of his belt to activate the yellow LED light within the figure's head. The light is very strong, shining through the Anti-Monitor's eyes and open mouth, while also lighting up his torso. The button "clicks" on and off, so you can leave the light on as he menaces your heroes!
In game terms, the Anti-Monitor is one tough opponent. Not quite as powerful as the "regular" version, the Guardian of Fear can be played at 400, 600, or 800 points, making him a good threat for more average-powered teams. With high stats and a full range of powers, he'll make a worthwhile opponent for your team of heroes and/or villains.
Regardless of your interest in the game, the Anti-Monitor is a fantastic display piece representing one of the most interesting villains in DC Comics history! As reported here last month, the company Topps has closed down Wizkids and discontinued its product lines. That makes the Sinestro Corps Anti-Monitor the final Heroclix colossal figure, and for those who thought this figure might be re-released down the line, guess again (even IF, and it's still a pretty big if, Catalyst/Pinata can get the license, they most likely won't be able to re-release existing product). Don't miss out on this great figure; find yours today!