Monday, July 30, 2012

Starman (Kingdom Come version)

Continuing my confusing decision to collect all the DCUC figures depicting the Starman legacy, something which I am only now realizing I've never actually written on this blog... So yeah, I've been picking up some of the Starman figures. I did write about the Buyer's remorse I had when I picked up a Jack Knight Starman, but since then I've picked up a Ted Knight Starman at Tuesday morning at 1/2 MSRP and a Stargirl because I was just kinda excited to find one. I'm not opening any of them, just putting them up on my wall in their packaging. I think I'm doing this because I loved the James Robinson series from the 90's, but it's also possible that I'm confusing my mild enjoyment of the Jeff Bridges movie for my mild enjoyment of these characters.

And then I bought the Starman from the Mattel Subscription line off of AJ because he said he didn't want it. Actually the cost wasn't too bad, and the fact that THIS Starman is also a character from the Legion of Superheroes means I'm not feeling too much Buyer's remorse on this purchase. Even if the packaging makes him look out of place.

One of these things is not like the others.
One of these things is not the same.
Actually the lack of accessories disturbs me a bit, although it's not like the character actually has an iconic accessory. Maybe a sloppy joe. See, when Starman traveled to the past from the 30th century, the medicines of the 21st century were unable to treat his mental illness. So he spent his off hours in a mental institution where he loved to eat sloppy joes. That's why they included an alternate head, he takes off his mask to eat sloppy joes.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

AMP episode 45: Play With Yourself

Episode 45 of the Articulated Monster Podcast is now available.


In this week's episode we talk about the Hot Toys figures unveiled at Ami-Con and then get into a really weird discussion about what we would do if we commissioned customized action figures of ourselves. Really weird.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Professor Zoom

At some point you have to wonder why the hell they call Professor Zoom the Reverse Flash. Okay, sure his colors are the opposite of the Flash's costume and he's evil, but that's about it. If he's the Reverse Flash he should be able to make things slow or something that is the opposite of being super fast at stuff.

The other thing you have to ask yourself is why the hell has it taken Mattel this long to do a figure of what is essentially a repaint. He looks exactly like the Flash, but he's yellow. This should have been the easiest figure they've ever made. It's even easier than Mullet Superman.

Oh wait, right. It's Mattel. Common sense should not enter into this discussion.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

AMP Episode 44: Dinner for Four

Oh snap, it's time for another episode of the Articulated Monster Podcast.

This extra episode is part of my blatant attempt to get to episode 50 sooner. This will be the last time I do this before we hit episode 50, so don't get too worried.

In this episode Mario, AJ, my friend Bruce, and myself all go to a Red Lobster and talk about Bruce's experiences at SDCC (he was my hookup for SDCC merch), some Mario Bros. minifigures we found right before we went to dinner, various pop culture things, and the food we are all eating. That's right, it's an hour of us talking while we're eating food. I've cut out a couple minutes of us ordering our food, but that's about it.

Bruce picked up the Death statue when he was at SDCC. He let me pull it out of the box and take a look at it. Personally I can't get into the eyes. They're a little too doe-ish for me.


(The title of this episode comes from an old IFC show called Dinner for Five, where John Favreau would eat dinner with 4 other people from the movie business and they would all share anecdotes about the industry. It was a fascinating show if they had good guess on.)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Toad & Diddy Kong

So this weekend I found a box of the K'Nex blind packed Mario Kart minifigures at Toys R' Us. I picked up a few and almost got all the ones I wanted. Mario and AJ picked up a few too. Of course after we opened everything, THAT was when we figured out that there was an identification code. On the back of every package is a series of 7 numbers. On each package a different number is underlined and that tells you what figure is inside. The only problem, the ink that is used to print these numbers rubs off pretty easily, so you might not be able to use them to find what you want. And unfortunately for me, what I thought was a Donkey Kong turned out to be a Bowser. 

Toad is pretty easy to figure out because of the giant head. I wanted to round out the Mario Bros. cast a bit, and since I'm a child of the 80's I actually think Toad is more iconic than Yoshi as a Mario Bros. character. The figure is okay. The head is great, but his arms are ridiculously long. He's literally a knuckle dragger. And  he has no leggs. His feet are stuck to the bottom of his torso, and they don't move at all. It helps the imagery of a short stout little man, but those arms are too much.

As for Diddy Kong, I could take or leave him, but since I was able to find him by feeling for his tail, I picked him up, that and because Toys R' Us was doing a buy one get one half off deal. So for half off, sure I'll get him. Actually, the tail is the only interesting bit about the figure. His design doesn't really fit in with the other Mario characters and compared to the other minifigures in this line, Diddy Kong feels a little light. Even when compared with Toad, since Toad has the giant head, Diddy just feels like he's made out of less plastic. The thin brim of his hat doesn't help. I feel like I could snap it like a cheap plastic cup.

Meanwhile I still want a Donkey Kong, but I've also seen solicitations for a K'Nex building set with DK, so I might just wait for that.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Saturday, July 21, 2012

AMP Episode 43: Ronco Food Dehydrator

Look at that, time for the next episode of the internet's most existing action figure podcast (tied with all the others): The Articulated Monster Podcast

This week AJ and Alan join us to talk about the Hasbro Marvel Panel, Hot Toys Bane, and food dehydration. Oh, and we teach Alan to hate Mattel.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Michael Jackson: Thriller version

I really thought I'd have to pay a lot of money for this.

Hot Toys figures are already really expensive, so what happens when you release a figure depicting one of America's most celebrated singers as he appeared during his most popular/successful periods of his career? Oh, wait, one more. Let's add another morbid element to this. What if just after that, he dies while relatively youthful? Yup, it suddenly becomes an in demand item among collectors, speculators and people with an ironic sense of appreciation. Because humanity is horrible.

I wonder how many people picked up this figure because it came with an zombie alternate head and costume to depict the Thriller sequence everyone loves. Because somehow buying a figure of a celebrity as a zombie right after he dies seems like it's in bad taste. Or is it hilarious? This age of cynical irony makes it really hard to tell. Yeah, that's right, I'm blaming the times we live in. Not my own morbid sense of humor.

Or... Is it because as a kid that Thriller video really freaked me out? Am I trying to somehow control my fears by owning that which as a child scared me? What do you think "in poor taste" variant of Michael Jackson?

Too soon?

(Incidentally, it was a huge pain in the ass switching heads. I can see why some people just opted to buy a second body and display them next to each other. Every moment I was trying to pull one head off and then push the other head on I felt like I was going to damage the plastic chest cavity with my grip. To prove that is a good idea, Hot Toys even included an extra set of pants and shirt, so you don't rustle up more to cover up your 2nd figure on the internet.)

Monday, July 16, 2012

The Band!

If you're wondering what I've been doing with all the 1:6 scale figures I've been amassing lately, this is the answer.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

AMP Episode 42: Blame San Diego

I'm seriously berginning to hate Comic-Con. But we recorded a podcast about it, while it was going on, and we're never going to do that again. It's sad that Comic-Con can be exhausting even if you don't go to it.

Want to listen to our weariness?

I mean it, even editing this episode was exhausting. And there's barely any editing.

You should compare this week to next week, when I'm sure we'll be extremely energized and hyper. Except Mario. Unless he's drunk or something.

Oh, and here's the image from Action Figure Insider of Adam West Movie Masters Batman. It's a Batman toy with a paunch!

Friday, July 13, 2012

AT-RT with ARF Trooper

Nothing says aesthetically pleasing but functionally ridiculous more than an AT walker. It's like the Steampunk of Star Wars. The only thing more ridiculous is a brown on bright white camouflage pattern. Seriously, the trooper looks like he was splattered with poop.

So obviously I got this because I like AT vehicles, even if they are silly. And even then because it was discounted. And even further then because I was looking for a 4" scale vehicle for Ghost Rider to ride.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Sentinel and First Appearance Ryu

There are some uncomfortable implications made by doing a  Sentinel / Ryu two-pack. Since Sentinels are designed to only hunt mutants, does this mean that Ryu, maybe even all the Street Fighter characters, gained the ability to shoot fireballs and whatever because they're mutants and not because they've trained and mastered martial arts? It makes sense, after all, if fireballs could be created by anyone who trained long enough, you'd probably see more people attend martial arts classes. And Karate Kid would have been a much more exciting movie.

I already have a Sentinel minimate and I already have a Ryu minimate, so why get this set? Answer: The Sentinel looks different enough from the Sentinel I have that it's pretty much a new figure.

As for Ryu, this figure is pretty much a HUGE improvement over the Ryu minimate that was released in the old Street Fighter wave of minimates. And yes, this Ryu has the wrong colored hair (which I assume has something to do with the first appearance part of his title) but then so did the old Ryu minimate with its light brown hair. So I'll take this minimate and the red shoes that kinda look like ladies slippers. Also, a fireball so big it comes with its own stand to hold it up. The old Street Fighter minimate came with a fireball, but when you used it the figure would tip over because it was too heavy.

Improvements, yay.

AMP Episode 41: Cosbaby with Boobs

Hey everyone, it's another episode of the Articulated Monster Podcast: Your favorite-esque toy and action figure podcast.


 AJ and Alan, from France, are with us this week. We talk about even more SDCC Exclusive news and a bunch of Dark Knight Hot Toys, both Cosbaby and 1:6 scale figures. Then we talk about video games we want to see toys of.

 Man, we really talk about Batman a lot. You will not be happy about that by the end of the conversation.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Cliffjumper (Robots in Disguise)

When the Transformers: Prime toys first hit my local Target a few months back, I’d thought I’d give the line a try -- being a hardcore TF fan, after all -- and decided to pick up a deluxe class figure.  Of the available offerings, I narrowed my choices down to the Prime versions of Cliffjumper and Wheeljack.  I ultimately went with Cliff because I had acquired the Generations Wheeljack not long before and, hey, The Rock voiced the character in the series.

Before even getting into the finer details of this particular figure, note that two factors make the Robots in Disguise subline less appealing than past Transformers deluxe assortments. Firstly, these figures are regularly retailing for about $15, a noted increase from just a few years back when 10 bucks was been the norm (and had been for over a decade). Secondly, these figures are noticeably smaller in robot mode than what buyers are typically used to for this scale. Those two factors can make it hard for buyers to rationalize picking up some Robots in Disguise deluxes on a whim.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Taskmaster and Nathan Spencer

Nathan Spencer? Oh, you mean Bionic Commando. Which would explain why he has the giant metal arm in place of the normal minimate arm. I picked up this Toys R Us Exclusive "Marvel vs. Capcom" set for the Bionic Commando minimate because I think it's a pretty interesting minimate design. (I don't give a crap about the character. I even think he's one of the worst playing characters in the game.)  Taskmaster I am ambivalent about because I already have the Taskmaster minimate that came with US Agent so many years ago, and I don't think there's a GIANT leap in improvement. It's a better designed figure, yes, but not so much so that I felt the need to get the new figure.

Although I will admit that the new version has a better cape.(Similar weapons though.)

Friday, July 6, 2012

Hex Bug, gift card

So there's a new Target gift card and it includes a free Hex Bug attached to it. So I figured, why not, free Hex Bug. It's designed to look like a caterpillar and includes wings to turn it into a butterfly.

If you've wandered the toy aisles you've probably seen Hex Bugs. I sure have. Of course I also had no idea what they were. Well now I do.

It's basically a Zhu-Zhu pet but much smaller and faster. I turned it on and it began vibrating and moving and I almost lost it because it went so fast that I could barely keep track of it. I was only able to pick it up because it got lodged in a pile of junk I had at the end of the table. If I had turned this on in my kitchen, I'm pretty sure it'd be under the fridge right now.

So yeah, I see why Hex Bugs wants you to buy their little bug tracks.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Avengers Box set

People have wanted a Kang figure for a while. Now it's available. But only at the Disney store! Packaged with figures you can get in the upcoming Avengers wave of minimates. So really that means people are going to be selling Kang on e-bay for the exact same cost as the entire set. Which really, is the best reason to buy a set with 3 minimates that you already have since the Avenger figures are the exact same figures from wave 44.

 Does that mean I just bought this whole set for the Kang figure?

Yes. Yes it does.

Fortunately this has the new version of Ant Man, and I'm digging the figure even more than the original Ant Man figure. Also the Hulk figure comes with some cement he apparently ripped out of the ground. Although really, this is just me trying to justify buying 4 figures when I just wanted Kang.

On a similar note, I'm NOT buying the other Avengers Disney Store exclusive box set that features the exclusive Grim Reaper figure. Because the Grim Reaper is a dude with a scythe where his hand should be. Oh sure, it's a high tech scythe, but it's a silly gimmick and that's why he only shows up when they need to give some angst to his brother Wonder Man.

Meanwhile Kang is a time traveller and time travellers are awesome. And that's why I got this set.

Monday, July 2, 2012

AMP Episode 40: Well that got erased

 Oh man. So this week's episode of the Articulated Monster Podcast vanished because of a technical glitch. So to make up for it, AJ, Mario and I re-recorded a quick news rundown. I also included something that was deleted way back from our first episodes: AJ, Mario and I talking about playsets. Sorry about all that.