America, right now, is a dumb culture. We seem to have a real problem with anyone who is obviously smarter than us. Scientists tell us that mankind is ruining the earth, and we roll our eyes and pretend they don't know what they're talking about. We think a bumbling nitwit is a good leader because he doesn't use big words and seems like he'd be fun to drink beer with. We merrily ignore 150 years worth of evolutionary science because the man on the tv news said God did it. With that in mind, it must absolutely suck to be Mr. Terrific.
Unable to bear the death of his wife, Olympic gold-medal decathlete Michael Holt found inspiration in the story of the Golden Age adventurer Mr. Terrific. He has rededicated himself to ensure Fair Play among the street youth by using his wealth and technical genius to become the living embodiment of those ideals.
Michael Holt is one smart man. How smart? Smart enough to recognize that he's not the smartest. In fact, DC has established that he's the third smartest man in the world. After winning his gold medal, he started his own cyberware company. The company was soon acquired by WayneTech, and Michael was set for life. But after his pregnant wife was killed in a car crash, he was about to commit suicide when he was approached by the Spectre, who had been a teammate of the original Mr. Terrific, Terry Sloane.
The figure stands nearly 6¾" tall, and moves at the head, shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips and knees. His neck is a balljoint, but it doesn't have a very good range of motion. His shoulders are simple peg joints, so you get no extra movement there. We already saw DC Direct make good balljointed shoulders in conjunction with a jacket on the Justice Zatanna, so why not here? Even by DCD standards, Mr. Terrific is unimpressive and barely poseable.
Mr. T was sculpted by Mike Berling, and he did a pretty good job. The figure's got a fairly forceful, dominant pose, which helps contribute to his unposeability - it's that whole McFarlane thing, where even a slight movement of the joints throws the pose way out of whack. Want to put his arm straight out in front of him? Nope, sorry. Want him to raise a knee? No, not really. His head is nice, with curly hair and an unmistakably angry look under his T mask.
The best part of this figure is the paint; like a newspaper, he's black and white and red all over.
The black is mostly matte, with gloss used for his gloves and the eyes in his mask. The red is applied crisply and, unlike every Marvel Legend to ever have a white paint app, there are no colorful shadows painted on his jacket and legs. Mr. Terrific has one of the sharpest costumes in comics today, and it looks good here. His "Fair Play" slogan is emblazoned on his sleeves, but the fact that it's split around the elbows means you can pose him without ruining the words.
One of Michael Holt's greatest inventions are his T Spheres, small hovering computers that he can control either be voice or thought. The spheres can project holograms, record images and link with any computer system. Handy little things. The figure has four of them that can "hover" above his palm, thanks to a clear plastic loop. Just pretend you can't see it. The spheres, usually a metallic grey in the comics, are black here, with a white T sunken into the surface. The hoop plugs into his right hand.
Mr. Terrific has actually become a pretty important figure in the DCU. He served as chairman of the JSA, the JLA has tried to recruit him and he's the White King of international espionage agency Checkmate. This figure could definitely be better, but it's not like we're likely to ever see another, and this one is perfectly acceptable. Prove you're smart, too - buy this figure.
Who are the two guys smarter than Mr. Terrific? Tell us on our message board, The Loafing Lounge