Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Flying Mummy Attack

Fear the obelisk.See, that this set is fricking awesome. You get a biplane, an obelisk, an adventurer minifigure and two mummy minifigures. And the Mummies have wings!

The obelisk is nice, the jewel at the top can be snatched off by a hook on the bi-plane. The Biplane is pretty nifty itself, it's more solid thatn I thought it would be. The only thing I dislike is the guns at the top of the plane. There's a couple pieces that form those guns that are looser than I think Legos have any right to be. But the landing gear at the bottom of the plane is amazing.

The second scariest thing that flies in Egypt.But hey, Mummies. The wings and helmet are seperate pieces. The wings are attached by a hook that goes around the neck peg before the head, so they wiggle around something fierce. The heads are actually double sided. There are exactly 2 Mummy faces in this wave, it would seem, one with one eye and one with two eyes. Each head has both faces printed on them. So if you want you can have an army of identical mummies, with loose fitting wings. But damned if those wings don't look awesome. Well worth the $20 price tag.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Toys R Us purchase

I haven't opened this yet, but I wanted to share it with you.

I went to Toys R Us the other day, possibly for the last time until after Christmas. I found a Lego set I didn't even know was coming out because I pretty much ignored all the news about the Pharaoh's Quest line.

Then I saw this:

And I'm sorry but that's pretty fricking awesome. Flying mummies. FLYING F*ING MUMMIES!

Also a bi-plane which I've wanted in Lego form for a while now.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Amy Pond

And here we have Amy Pond, the second main reason I purchased this auction. She's hard to find as a single figure, and I really don't give a damn about the Roman Autons enough to buy the 6 pack with her in it. (Although a Dalek made out of stone is kinda cool.) Also, the loose figures were going for an insane amount on ebay, so this was actually a fairly good way to get her in my collection.

So far she's my 2nd favorite companion from the new series (possibly tied with Donna Noble.) Part of that is because damn they picked an attractive actress to play her. Also Scottish accent. The figure shares the actress' likeness pretty well, although the expression is a bit dull. Othrewise this is a great figure and a good compliment to the 11th Dcotor figure.

Now I want a Rory Williams figure and all will be well. And not in his fricking Roman armor, just a casually dressed figure. (He's my favorite companion by the way.)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tow Truck

I love me some Lego trucks. I don't know why, so I probably knew somewhere in the back of my mind that one day I'd end up buying this tow truck. It was easy to put together and it looks good. I'm shocked how well the tow feature works, particularly since there's no knot to keep the string attacked to the pulley system. I had a little trouble with the tools coming out of their pegs, but I've got no complaints about this set. No hard praise either though. It comes with an unexciting City Maitenance worker minifigure.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Face of Boe

Hey, it's the Face of Boe. Original MSRP $29.99, who knows what it goes for loose. This helped make the blow of how much the Lot cost go down a little smoother. It actually has an action feature, probably to make up for the complete lack of articulation. When you push a little tab on the back of the tank the Face of Boe's mouth moves. Which kinda means the articulation is incredibly accurate to the character. It also means this is basically a puppet.

For those of you in the know, it's been implied that the Face of Boe is a 5 billion year old Jack Harkness. It was a last minute retcon by Russel T. Davies, the writer and show runner for that period of the show, so the resemblance isn't perfect. Also, the Face of Boe didn't say anything that really implied he knew who the Doctor was.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Scary Cars

Hey, Target had a sale on Halloween items so I got 5 Hot Wheels cars for $2.50. Each one is designed to be Halloween themed. But are they any good? Let's find out.

This sucker is called Rodzilla. A silly name, but probably accurate given that it's a car with a giant dinosaur neck and head attached to it. It's Halloweenish because monsters are Halloween, right? I guess. I'd hate to drive this car in real life, the neck is a joint to allow it to turn it's head around, but it's also very loose, swinging around as it moves foward. It took a couple trips down the ramp before it even completed because the neck kept hitting the ramp as it was spinning around.

Next up is the '59 Caddilac Funny Car. This is Halloween because of the mummy, the pumpkins, and the flames in orange.

Since it's a funny car the body lifts up. I used to love that feature on toy cars when I was a kid. It's still a little cool now, but it also prevents the damn thing from successfully making the loop on the ramp. So it gets a DNF on the ramp.
I like the Halloween decorations on the body. The orange contrasts well with the black. Even if it didn't have the pumpkins on, the flames give it a "car from hell" vibe. It looks very inimidating... scary might be a better word.

Okay, coming up next is The Gov'Ner. No idea why it's called that. It's Halloween decorations is that it's bright orange. Also a skull on the hood.

This is a surprisingly light Hot Wheel. The entire body is made out of plastic. I like the design of the body, although the Orange on Orange flames make it look silly. The skulls help a bit, but overall I can't help but look at this and think, "That is a very orange car." Orange isn't a scary color for a car. Not really. Not since the Dukes of Hazzard.

Next up: Phantasm. As you can see it's a translucent green and it has ghost decals all over. Because it's translucent it's made entirely of plastic, making it feel even lighter than the Guv'Ner. I think the only metl of it is the axels. The translucent green looks cool, you can even see the seats through the top and sides. It's not scary, but it does convey the ghost theme well. And those decals help remind you in case you ever forget. Like huge educational aids for stupid people.
This is an insanely light car, it has no heft to it whatsoever. I feel like I could shatter it if I dropped it. When you roll it it moves as though it has no weight to it whatsoever... like a ghost. Oh man, that totally makes sense now.

And finally we have "Torpedo Jones." It's another ghost car, although this one is actually diecast metal, with a plastic driver figure in it. What makes it ghostly, aside from the ghost decals (the same seen on the Phantasm), is that the driver figure glows-in-the-dark, toy shorthand for a ghost.

I like it. The Glow-in-the-dark feature isn't overstated and actually works. The car looks old-fashioned and so promotes the "car from the past" element. Not my favorite Hot Wheels car ever, and not one I would ever buy if it were sold individually, but not a bad car.

And if you're wondering how they all did on the ramp, well take a look.

As noted before: the '59 Caddilac Funny Car did not finish. Rockzilla performed poorly, barely making it past the Batmobile. Ironically both the Phantasm and Torpedo Jones were able to surpass the Ecto-1, and as you can see, the Gov'Ner became the car to beat as it sailed past every other Hot Wheels car I own.

2010 Birthday Haul

I got a couple of figures for my birthday a few weeks ago, but since I've got a backlog of toys I've actually purchases in need of reviews (Deathstroke! Transformers Universe Onslaught! Crimson Dynamo!), I'll just discuss the two highlights here.

There are few figures that are still absolute must-haves for me in the DC Universe Classics line, and Martian Manhunter topped the list. He's just hitting stores now, and like a good friend Mario got me one as a present. Except when it arrived in the mail, it was the variant version--the one with the Martian head and the unremovable blade-hand. Luckily, the buyer he obtained it from on exchanged it for the regular version.

There are plenty of DCUC figures I would have normally acquired (Spectre, Mr. Terrific, Wildcat) if not for the blanding, homogenizing effect Mattel has wrought on the line by using the exact same base bodies over and over. Knowing Mattel, I was aware that Martian Manhunter would reuse as many parts as possible, but because he was one of the few truly essential figures for me in the line, I decided long ago that I could live with that. Aside from the all-new head, belt, harness, cape, and boots (which cleverly add height to the figure to replicate the character's towering stature), the lower body is the exact same thing you get with all but a select few DCUC male figures, while the upper body comes courtesy of Hawkman.

Despite the reuse, you could count on it being a great-looking figure, right? Well, kinda--there are some definite issues. The longer shin pieces do make J'Onn J'Onzz appropriately tall when placed next to other figures, but they don't look all that proportionate on the figure itself; the net effect is that his legs end up being too long. Furthermore, the length of the legs and the bulk of the torso piece makes the midsection look too skinny and the arms look positively puny. The figure looks alright in certain poses and these issues do not impact the fun aspect of the figure at all, but I still feel disappointed that Mattel's cheapness has restricted what line sculptors the Four Horsemen can do within the company budget, and has consequently prevented this figure from being the ultimate toy representation of the character.

Despite its faults, I still like the Martian Manhunter figure a hell of a lot. But it's not the most impressive toy-related gift I received this year. No, that honor goes to . . .

Leave to to my brother to present me with the American release of Masterpiece Grimlock as my primary birthday gift this year. Part of the Masterpiece line that deals with creating large-size ultimate interpretations of iconic Transformers characters, the arrival of the Dinobot Commander finally provides me with a figure that can go toe-to-toe with my Masterpiece Starscream. Now, I am a massive Transformers fan, but I've felt progressively let down by Hasbro and Takara's joint efforts on the line in recent years, particularly when it comes to updating old figures, my main gripe being unnecessary changes that end up making the new figures come off as subpar (see Titanium Soundwave's massive crotch piece and Classics Mirage's weird lanky torso with wheels sticking in the air). No such problem are to be found with Masterpiece Grimlock, though: he's a straight update of the original figure from the 1980s, with alterations made to enhance its resemblance to the character's cartoon representation. As with all modern Transformers figures, the new plus-sized Grimlock boasts loads of articulation, and the larger size of the toy accommodates tons of intricate sculpted details. He comes with two weapons--his trademark double-barreled rifle and sword--and features a Dinobot crown (not pictured) that's exclusive to the American release. The figure is loads of fun, and it's one of the few Transformers toys I have where I struggle to decide which mode to display it in.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Dalek with Mutant Reveal

I actually have one of these already, so this is the first "double" that I got in the Lot. That said, I like the figure a lot and wouldn't mind having 2 of them. If nothing else, when you put the "arms" back on it looks like a regular Dalek so you can display it in both states.

They're actually releasing a version of this as part of the Series 5 figures. The only difference, as far as I can tell, is that there is no mutant reveal feature. So really, this is the better figure.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Guy Gardner

Screw Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner is the best Green Lantern ever. Unfortunately the only way to get his DC Universe Classics figure is in a $100 5 pack with 4 other Green Lanterns I don't want.

See, I have a dream of one day having DCUC figures of the core 5 of the JLI. (Blue Beetle, Booster Gold, Guy Gardner, Fire, Ice) And maybe Elongated man. But I'm not Spending $100 to get 4 abritrary figures I don't need to complete that dream. Thank God for ebay.

I got this one reasonably priced ($25) compared to the set price. I like the figure and as a stand alone it's great. Unfortunately next to the Booster & Beetle I already have he seems a tad big. His head in particular, but the way they depicted his vest and boots make him seem very bulky. He also looks a tad cartoonish compared to Booster.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

2009 Christmas Haul (Late, Yeah, I Know)

Yes, it is now November 2010. Better late than never, huh? I got some pretty great stuff last Jesus Day, and since I've taken my sweet time covering these items, I'll try to keep it short here.

Green Arrow here is a gift from Action Ranger Timmy. Only his shoulders, crotch, and upper legs are reused from the standard male base body that Mattel utilizes for these figures whenever possible, so that from the get-go earns the figure high marks in my book. The new details are great, and he's got bonus articulation in the wrists to accommodate fancy archery poses. The only true shortcoming with the figure lies in in its accessory. The arrow is permanently attached to the bow, and the shaft of the arrow is way too short. Regardless, it's one of the best figures from DC Universe Classics.

Mario gave me the classic Ted Kord version of Blue Beetle, also from DC Universe Classics. While there's far more parts reuse going on here than with Green Arrow above (in fact, the head, the belt, and the BB gun accessory are the only pieces unique to this figure), I like it far more. Part of the reason is that when standing at rest Green Arrow is kind of awkward-looking, while Blue Beetle is fun to pose in a variety of positions. While I technically already got this figure when I acquired Green Lantern (same base body, of course) Blue Beetle is a superior figure: he has a more interesting color scheme, the belt makes the midsection look more proportionate, and the head sits higher on the neck, making it look far more realistic than the stump-necked Hal Jordan figure. As a result of all these facets, Beetle here has since become one of my absolute favorites of the line. As a side effect, my satisfaction with the execution here has partly contributed to making me far less interested in buying any further DCUC figures that trot out that same old base body. Come on Mattel, give us more unique sculpts!

Late last year I had another one of my periodic Star Wars phases. Given I was surprisingly short on Imperial grunt forces, my brother provided me with some Stormtroopers. Naturally, these figures use the same mold (which makes perfect sense, unlike in some other action figure lines I could name), but one of them specifically represents a Spacetrooper briefly seen in Star Wars when the Millennium Falcon enters the Death Star hangar bay, complete with breathing apparatus, large rifle, and removable helmet. Whatever, I'll take any canonical excuse that allows me to troop-build without having to by multiples of the exact same figure.

The real prize during last year's Christmas was the brand new AT-ST Hasbro put out, also courtesy of my brother. I wanted one ever since Kenner's Star Wars: Power of the Force line launched in 1995, but it always eluded me for some reason. My disappointment in never acquiring one of the few vehicles from any toy line I still desired was alleviated when Hasbro released this all-new larger sculpt of the AT-ST, loaded with cool features including super-articulated legs, interchangeable cannons, and a bonus AT-ST Driver figure. The cockpit alone (which seats two figures instead of one, as the original version did) is filled with enough fantastic details to make it one of the coolest toys released in 2009. It's certainly impressive, and holds an honored place in my collection, standing right next to my Millennium Falcon (with my Infinite Heroes Batman standing on top of the entrance hatch, funnily enough).

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Rowdy Roddy Piper

Okay, it's not the best likeness of the Piper, or even his most iconic costume, but hell, it's a small vinyl figure of Rowdy Roddy Piper. This dude:

Also, it only cost 50 cents because I found it in the discount bin of a discount store. I tried to look fore other gems, but then a staple stabbed me under my finger nail and I lost the will to do anything.

If you're wondering, there are better Piper figures out there. You know, like the one where you find out from the profile that he's Destro's brother and helping train the Iron Grenadiers. So technically Roddy is a terrorist in the GIJoe universe.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Clockwork Man

It's one of the Clockwork dudes from "The Girl in the Fire Place." my favorite story from Season 2 of the new series. It's an interesting figure.

And a good interesting. It has limited articulation, no mid-thigh or bicep swivels, but that sort of works considering the robotic nature of the character. Unfortunately there's no mid-torso swivel either, and that would have been nice to see.

Accessory wise, that blade weapon in its arm can be removed. And even more interesting, that mask face is an actual mask. You can remove it to reveal the clockwork robot underneath.

And that's pretty fricking cool.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Weeping Angel

Remember, they only stay frozen if someone is looking at them. So whatever you do, don't blink.

Don't Blink.

Don't even blink!

Whoops. Yeah, these are awesome. Sure their legs have no articulation and are just a solid base, but who cares.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Target Gift Cards: Puppet, Lego, Voice Changer

So the current set of Christmas Gift Cards are out at Target now. You have your normal ones with maybe a small novelty like a lenticular picture or the weird finger puppet card as seen up top. You put your fingers in there and your fingers now act as the bear's arms. And he can give you a hug!

But even more interesting are the other two. One is an electronic voice changer. You press a button to record your voice and then each of the elves on the card are actually other buttons that will distort the recording by shifting the pitch or speeding it up. It's actually kind of fun. And it's called "Elfin' Around". When I bought it the cashier did a double take because she thought it said "Effin' Around."

And the other one, the one I'm marking out about, is a Lego set. Yes. It's a gift card that doubles as a Lego set. (Or to be more accurate the box that the Lego set comes in.) It contains the 31 Legos required to build a Lego version of Target's mascot Spot.

What I find fascinating about this is that you don't pay extra for these gift cards. So you get one, put $5 on it, and then give it to someone. Not only do they get a gift card to Target, they also get a bonus toy! Or, if you're more cynical and mercenary, you get a bunch of them, put $5 on each (that's the minimum amount required) and then you've got a bunch of free toys and some gift cards that you then spend at Target at your leisure....

And here is where it gets diabolical. Since you can use your gift card to buy other gift cards, you just buy one and then use the amount on there to buy another one, repeat. Although you risk being known as an ass and possibly being banned from the store. Also, you prevent your fellow toy collectors from getting in on this deal. So use this information wisely.

I did clear my store out, but I'm actually planning on giving them to kids. So I'm not 100% evil.


The Batmobile was disturbingly easy to find compared to the other geek based Hot Wheels I've picked up. Mario tells me it's based on the Brave and the Bold cartoon and it looks nice. A lot better than the one from The Batman cartoon which I've passed on when I've seen them on shelves.

I still say that if I didn't know it was the Batmobile based on the packaging telling me so that I would be able to figure out on my own though. These days I need a bat symbol on it to tell the difference.

Anyway, how did it do on the track. Well originally I thought it had a Did Not Finish, being to light to get through the loop, but then I made a small adjustment to the track set-up and bam, it worked. It didn't go very far, but it worked. Actually this made me realize that this new track set up might result in previous DNF Hot Wheels being able to complete hte launch. So I sent them all down the track again and wouldn't you know, except for the Go Kart they all were able to be launched from the track. So here's the new results for the Hot Wheels track launch.

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Time Lord

Oh look, it's a generic Time Lord wearing its what appear to be Prydonian robes. (The Time Lords had a class system.) This is from the Third Series of the line. The character is featured in the Third Season flashback to the time of the Master's childhood. It takes its visual cues from the Time Lords that appeared in the classic series, so in many ways it represents the classic series and the overuse of Time Lords that occured during the 80's.
This is an interesting figure.
And by interesting I mean it kinda sucks. The face, that of an old man, looks like it's melting off. The cape and whatever the shoulder thing is both prevent the shoulders from moving, effectively removing the point of including a shoulder joint. It also prevents the head from moving. Under its robes it has legs, which is kinda pointless since the robe prevents those legs from moving, although the feet can be adjusted to make the figure more unstable and hard to prop up. It makes sense that the figure doesn't have knees....
Oh screw it, I just hate the face. It looks like Regis Philbin's face is melting.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Imperial Dalek

This guy was originally released with the 7th Doctor in a cream colored jacket, hat, and smile. I never got that one, instead getting the figure with the darker jacket and the TARDIS. Of course then they released what I consider to be the definitive version in the 11 Doctors box set, so yeah, I kinda dropped the ball there.

This white and gold design only appeared in the serial "Remembrance of the Daleks" and was one of 2 warring Dalek factions. The Imperial Daleks were made by Davros after the original Daleks turned on him. They have never appeared since.

This guy is actually being released in a box set of 4 Dalek Designs from "Remembrance" and damn do I want that one. Although mostly for the heavy weapons Dalek. (A Dalek with no eye stalk and only a big giant cannon on its "chest.")

Friday, November 5, 2010

Inflatable Dalek & TARDIS Wardrobe

Behold, my birthday presents to myself. An expensive fabric zipper wardrobe and a reasonably priced inflatable Dalek. The Dalek is insanely hard to blow up, and I think I may have broken part of the wardrobe's metal framework.
But they're still awesome. Because I now have a Tardis and Dalek toys that are close to 1:1 scale.

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Doomsday Cyberman

Next up from the box of ebay items, Doomsday Cyberman. This was from a 3 pack featuring characters from the episode Doomsday. This one is slightly different than the other modern cyberman figures in this line due to some weird shading on the joints, giving the metal a slightly burnt tinge. It's also the first one of the Cybermen I've gotten with a gun on its arm. This brings my total number of Cybermen to 12.

A Cybermen dozen.

Yeah, I got nothing. Hell, I didn't even notice the arm laser until like a week after I got the package. It doesn't really stand out.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: K-9

And here we come to the figure I bought the entire Lot for. Yup, K-9. I love the character, particularly for its classic series appearances. He's a character with no tact and thus says horrible things that are the truth in an attempt to be helpful. But he says them in such a logical manner that you can't get angry at him, he's just deflating you with the facts.

Plus he's a robot dog.

He's also really hard to find. Most auctions for him went far beyond what I was willing to pay for such a small figure. But I scoured the ebay and found this lot, which when combined with all the other figures, was just what I was willing to plop down.
And damn is this a great figure. His side panel even pops off with a button press to reveal his inner workings. Is he mark 1, Mark II, Mark III, or Mark IV? It doesn't matter, he can be any of them! I'm sure he's a little bigger than the scale should allow, but I don't care, he's awesome.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Doctor Who ebay Lot: The Wire

Okay, this is kind of pushing it. This was counted as one of the 22 figures in the Lot. It's actually one of the accessories that came with the faceless Grandma Connoly figure, but it depicts a character, even if it's an energy being in a television set, so it could maybe count as an action figure.

That said, I have watned a Wire figure for a while. I've considered buying the Grandma Connoly figure but didn't want the Grandma Connoly figure itself, so the inclusion of this in the Lot was sort of advantageous.

What really sucks is that since this is an accessory, it doesn't come with the other version of the Wire that came with Grandma Connoly, the Wire in a portable television. I kinda want that accessory, so I might have to get a Grandma Connoly figure and another one of these Wire "figures."

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

90's Cyclops & 90's Jean Grey

Our revisitation to the 90's and the 90's X-men featured in the X-Men cartoon comes to a potentially brief close with these two figures. Since my teenage years were in the 90's, these are pretty much how I remember these characters. Cyclops with his head hood never seems quite right to me.

And Jean Grey... Oh who cares. In the 90's Jean Grey pretty much served as generic psychic and a love interest for Cyclops. (And sometimes Wolverine.) There was a reson she was on the Gold Team. No one cared what happened to the Gold Team. The Blue Team was where it was at. (Seriously, they had Wolverine, Gambit, Cyclops, and Rogue. If you don't have Cyclops and Wolverine on your X-men then you're on the B-Squad.) Yes, this is the costume she was wearing back then. Yes, it was the one that was on the cartoon. Yes, it is the one most people remember and is probably the most iconic of her costumes... after the Dark Phoenix costume.... and maybe the silver age green and yellow one.

I've also placed Cyclops' alternate head and hair piece on a Blue suit body, just to give you an idea what's going on under his visor. It's pretty cool. All the other Cyclops minimates I have feature the glowing eyes underneath. This is the first one I've gotten with the civilian sunglasses. It's a useful feature to have, if you want a civilian Cyclops minimate. And I do.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Marvel Heroes Ultimate Collection

Yeah, so the Dollar Tree has these guys in blind bagged sets. Each figure comes in little metallic bag with 12 stickers. Which one will you get? You don't know... unless you feel the plastic through the bag. Because you know what, pretty sure the Hulk doesn't have the same shape as the Invisible Woman.

So after standing in the aisle, squeezing like an idiot, I bought two packs and got the two figures I wanted: Silver Surfer & The Invisible Woman. They're cheap, the pegs don't fit in their bases properly, and at this small a scale look weird. The pain is surprisingly good on these things though. Admittedly it's not hard to pain the Silver Surfer, just don't get any paint on him. Congratulations, success. But damn, look at the pain on the Sue Storm face. They painted her tiny little face, and didn't go out of the lines. Impressive. Although she does look a bit peeved.

But they were a $1 each and came with 12 stickers for 24 stickers total. And some of those were pretty nice, although most were crap. So was it worth it? Sort of. Could be worse I guess. I've certainly blown $1 on worse stuff.

For other views on these figures check here and here.

Doctor Who ebay Lot: Magnus Greel & Mr. Sin

Even though these two came packaged together, they count as two figures in the Lot of 22.

From the story "Talons of Weng-Chiang," a Fourth Doctor Story. Magnus Greel is a tyrant from the future who had his DNA deformed when he tried to escape into the past in a faulty time machine. He's a disfigured life-energy campire now. He's supposed to come with an alternate head that features his melty-disfigured face, but the guy who sold me this box of Doctor Who items lost it a long time ago. I guess I should just be happy he has a head. It helps that I don't really care about this figure and just sort of accepted that it was part of the set. He comes with Mr. Sin, a puppet who is actually an evil cyborg from the future made up of a pig's brain.

Interesting point, Mr. Sin was played by Deep Roy.

Yes they look Chinese. The story involves a lot of evil Chinese characters in Victorian England. Very Yellow Peril stuff. Not the greatest depiction of minorities on Doctor Who. (And hey, the most prominent Chinese character is played by a white guy.) Shame, because it's actually a really good episode.