Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Green Lantern Classics: Sodam Yat

Sodam Yat was created in 1986 by Alan Moore, who intended to use him in a never-published story set in the future of the DCU. Moore intended for Yat to kill Superman, and - to Moore's credit - he gave the character a plausible explanation for having that kind of power.

Sodam Yat is a Daxamite, an alien race closely related to Kryptonians (Daxamites have been around since the 60's, though they never came up much). Under a yellow sun, they exhibit the same powers as Superman, but instead of being susceptible to Kryptonite, they can be killed by lead. So everything bounces off them EXCEPT bullets.

It was a silly concept created for a fairly silly story involving an alien who showed up pretended to be Kryptonian and befriending Superboy. But, for better or for worse, the species was created and in continuity, and Moore saw the potential.

What if you gave something like that a Green Lantern ring?

He did just that - or rather alluded to it - in a prophecy told to Abin Sur. Moore himself never got around to telling that story (he had a falling out with DC Comics soon after), and the character faded into obscurity for decades.

Until Geoff Johns dusted off the concept and folded him into the Sinestro Corps War, a major event involving an alliance of villains so bad you'd need a super-powered Green Lantern on your side just to have a chance. Johns actually upped the ante, empowering Sodam Yat with Ion, the living embodiment of willpower. Even so, he eventually got taken down (but not killed) by Superboy Prime, whose origin... I'll leave for another day.

The action figure is pretty good, but not spectacular. Honestly, I wish they'd gone with his Green Lantern outfit instead of his Ion look, but that's just my preference. There's nothing special about his articulation: this is standard DCUC (which is still pretty good).

The one trump card this figure does have is accessories. He doesn't do as well as some of the other packs in this wave (a few of the figures have interchangeable heads and hands, basically working out to two figures in one), but he does come with an extra hand.

The one he comes wearing is actually the one I'd consider the alternate: it has a green energy construct of a ring symbol shooting out. It's a great idea, and it mostly works. I'd have been happier if it were a little bigger, but the idea is so much fun it's hard not to love it anyway. I think I actually prefer Yat with his normal hand, but I plan on "shopping this around" to my other Lantern action figures: I'm sure it'll look good on someone.

I was torn on this figure for the longest time. He's good but not great, and, while I like the character concept, I'm not really attached to him. What finally made me buy him wasn't the toy himself, but the Collect & Connect pieces for Stel. He comes with Stel's head and waist, which were all I was missing.

I found him at a Toys R Us on Long Island for $18. I actually bought him knowing he was three bucks less on Amazon, but decided that was worth the instant gratification.

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