Now that Mattel's animated Justice League line is about to go bye-bye (to be replaced by the [hopefully] more even Justice League Unlimited), we've finally got the third villain figure to reach shelves, the Ultra-Humanite.
A brilliant scientist who transplanted his over-sized brain into the body of an albino gorilla, the Ultra-Humanite is cultured and erudite, bringing some class to the world of crime.
When it comes to goofyass DC Comics villains, Ultra-Humanite has to take the cake. Originally he was just a bald scientist who fought Superman a lot. Then he perfected his brain-swapping process and started jumping bodies, which was a good thing: he would be overshadowed a year later by Superman's other gleaming, hairless foe.
One of his eventual forms was a giant white ape because, really, who doesn't like giant apes? That's the form that made it to TV, and that's the form that now has an action figure.
Not even DC Direct, whose stock in trade is their willingness to turn even the most obscure and unpopular characters into toys, had considered an Ultra-Humanite, so for once Mattel is setting the curve.
Humey has more articulation than the average animated-style figures: sure, he moves at the big five just like all the rest, but he's also got elbows and wrists. Since his legs are so short, he doesn't have room for knees, but it's okay.
The figure is 4 3/4" tall, bigger than most of the Justice League toys. He's white, for the most part; no surprise there. He's wearing a red and gold costume that features spiked straps running over his shoulders and a little skirt. How manly.
The sculpt is good. The ape's big, bulbous head has a prominent vein on each side, and he's got a somewhat imperious look on his face that suits the character - think Sideshow Bob in a gorilla suit and you've got him nailed.
Ultra-Humanite comes with one accessory, a rocket launcher/sled. He can either hold it in his hand as a big gun or fold out the little wings and stand on its surface. A useless little device, its only real purpose is to put UH in the "Morph Gear" series of figures.
Though Mattel surprised us all by making this obscure character into an action figure, he's still incredibly hard to find because they still labor under the delusion that bad guys won't sell. Hasn't Mattel heard? Monkeys make everything better.
What's your favorite Ultra-Humanite host body? Tell us on our message board, The Loafing Lounge.