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Atom Eve

by yo go re

It's been quite the wait, but there's finally news on Season 2 of Amazon Prime's Invincible cartoon, and there's finally a release of Series 2 of Diamond Select's Invincible action figures.

Samantha Eve Wilkins was genetically engineered by the government to be a living weapon, but was secretly sent home with her parents and raised as a normal girl. Her powers first manifested as an aptitude for science, and she was eventually able to manipulate all organic and inorganic matter at an atomic level. Taking the name Atom Eve, she operated as a member of the Teen Team for a while, then later went solo.

That text isn't from the toy's packaging, because those all have shared generic chatter that we need for a different review, but it is still official copy from DST. How? It's from the box on their Femme Fatales statue (the same line that brought us Tarot and Dawn), which may be based on the comics and not the cartoon, but fortunately for all involved, Invincible doesn't stray far from its roots, so all the info is still accurate.

Not even the art style got majorly changed between mediums. The comic had a very clean, simple look, so the animation could just adapt it directly rather than needing to drastically reimagine things as so many other comic-based show have had to do. The first series of figures was all boys, so Eve is our first look at how a female toy will appear in this line. And the result is... ehn. It's not hard to find a model sheet of the character, so we have something to compare her to. And that comparison is not in the toy's favor. The ribcage should be broader, and while that one you'd probably only pick up doing a one-to-one comparison like this, the fact that her legs are too skinny will probably leap right out at you. Like, weirdly skinny.

And then there's the head. The jaw is asymmetrical, being larger on her left side than on the right, her cheeks need to come forward more, and her eyes are too large. At least when Mark's head was wrong, it was just taller than it should be and the wrong color; wearing goggles meant we didn't have to worry about how his eyes looked. But this does not look like Atom Eve, it looks like someone else wearing her costume.

The costume does look good. The colors are true to the animation, and unlike the Minimate, neither of the pinks is close enough to her skintone to blend in. Even if it was, the edges between colors are part of the sculpt, helping accentuate the change between them. The cartoon designed three different versions of her super-symbol (for different levels of detail in a given scene), and the toy uses the "extreme close-up" version, rather than taking any shortcuts. While her skin is pale, it's not as bad as Mark's, and is fairly close to the animation guides. Unfortunately, her hair is not: she's yet another dream redhead, but this toy is nearly brunette. It's like they took her "shadow" color and applied it to the whole thing.

At least her articulation is still decent? She has a balljointed head, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, hinged elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, a balljointed chest, balljoint hips, swivel thighs, hinged knees, and swivel/hinge ankles. That's no less than the boys get! Her hair does mean the head can't tip back, but as we've seen so far, that's nothing new. She does include a flight stand, one of the full ones with a large disc base and a multi-piece, articulated arm to hold the figure in the air, but that honestly doesn't mean much if the figure can't look up. They were clever enough to put the hole for the peg outside her cape, rather than underneath it. Now it's just blocked by her hair.

Evie gets a whole bunch of accessories. You like alternate hands? She's got fists in the tray, but you can trade those for fully open, gripping, or nearly closed. If that's not enough, how about a pair of fists that have transluecent flares on front, like she's using her powers while punching someone? They should absolutely be pink, not clear, but it's still a cool idea we haven't seen a lot of before. Same goes for the two energy flares that plug into her feet, like they're helping her fly.

We're not done yet, either, because this is actually a two-pack. In the comics, one of the Guardians of the Globe was "Shrinking Ray," an expy of the Atom (because Ant-Man can also grow, which Ray can't). Looking to mix things up a bit, the cartoon instead gave us "Shrinking Rae," trading the Y at the end of the name for an E, and trading the Y at the end of the chromosome pair for an X: she's a girl, rather than a boy. This is an unarticulated piece, not even 2" tall, but captures her super-cute look really well. They even remembered to paint her glasses!

Atom Eve is a fine figure - there's nothing really "wrong" with it, per se, but clearly whoever was in charge of managing the project needed to send her back for at least one more round of revisions.

-- 02/09/23

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