Friday, November 30, 2012

2012 Birthday Haul

I've finally received all my birthday presents (thank you to all my generous friends), so here's a brief rundown of all the toys I got as gifts this year.

My present from Mario was a Gremlins 2 Gizmo. Who doesn't love Gizmo? People who hate joy, that's who. This version is a completely new sculpt that shares no pieces with NECA's first Gizmo from a few years back. The stumpy little guy boasts a surprising amount of articulation -- up to and including his ears and even his eyes, which can be moved via a dial on the back of his head -- though naturally the shape of his body restricts the poses he can be put in. Additionally, the eyes have a tendency to shift out of place, so if you want to set Gizmo's gaze into a certain position, make sure to keep the tab that comes inserted in the dial when the figure is sealed in the packaging. Said tab secures the placement of the eyes and is easy to remove and reinsert. In any event, Gizmo is as adorable as can be -- everyone should own at least one Mogwai!

James gave me two figures, the first of which was Grapple Blast Black Widow. Given my collection of Marvel movie action figures is focused on the 6" scale, I've refrained from buying any 4" Avengers toys up to this point, though I have considered picking up that new 8-pack featuring all the characters. Well, now that I have the best figure from that line, obtaining the set is kind of needless now. The sculpt is really good, and unlike a lot of the 4" Avengers, Black Widow suffers from almost no budget-induced articulation cuts (the lack of a waist joint is the most glaring omission). Due to the way one of her pistols was shoved into her hand in the packaging, my Black Widow is perpetually wagging her finger at naughty supervillains. Sounds like something a Russian would do.

James said his intention in giving me a Golden Age Atom was to get me a DC Universe Classics offering that he knew I wouldn't buy myself. His judgement was astute: the original Atom is one of the few JSA characters I care absolutely nothing for, and the implementation of typical lazy Mattel reuse (his shirt is painted on, for chrissakes!) made him a very unappealing purchase at retail price. Having him in hand, I must say he's pretty fun to play around with, as many Mattel 6" DC figures are. But then every one in a while I look at it and remember that his shirt is painted on and that the company decided to approximate the character's Rudy-like short stature by merely producing him on a regular-sized body with slightly-shorter shin pieces, and then I feel really bad that the Four Horsemen's talents has been so wasted on this line. But yeah, this Atom ain't too bad after all. Still wouldn't have bought it myself, but that's what friends are for, right?

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Man Bat

Hey everyone, it's Kirk Langstrom, better known as Man-Bat! He turned himself into a giant mutant bat! That's the perfect bad guy for a man with no powers but who calls himself Batman. It's like how Zorro fights werewolves all the time.

This is the minimate of Man Bat from the hard to find second wave of the C3 series of Minimates. They  came with vehicles because it was the only way to get license back then, and since I didn't want to also pay for another Batman with a Batcycle, I couldn't get this guy when he first came out. Now I have him, and really, would you think that he's from the Batman minimate line if you didn't know? He's far more fitting for the Battle Beast minimates line.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Crayon Rings

Seen at Target. If you feel comfortable carving wax then instant Green Lantern accessories.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Beta-Ray Bill

Somewhere, there are people demanding more toys of anthropomorphic space horses. I am one of those people. So good thing they made a Marvel Universe Beta-Ray Bill figure. For all the 4 inches of space horse alien goodness a person can handle. Because space horse. Now with removable cape.

Beta-Ray Bill, proving that Norse mythology would have been better with space aliens.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Batman Fingerboard

Fingerboards are silly. But you know what can make them less silly? Nothing.

But if you put Batman on one it becomes a kind of silly I'd be willing to buy a happy meal to get. Particularly if its Young Justice Batman. Now, I haven't watched much of the show, but what I've seen has made Batman look awesome, primarily by not being told from the point of view of Batman but instead of people who are in awe of Batman.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Chitauri General and Chitauri Footsoldier

I got these a while ago when GoHastings sent me the wrong set. I ordered the variant with Maria Hill. But when I called to complain they cancelled the order, refunded my money and told me to keep these. I would have rather they somehow sent me the thing I ordered instead, but what can I do against the regional monolith that is GoHastings?

I can write a blog post that a dozen people will see is what.

So I guess my dreams of owning a Maria Hill minimate are dashed.

The screwed up part is that I never wanted either of these figures and will probably never open this pack unless I need base parts to cannibalize.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Robocop and Figma

Everybody went and got the Figma Metroid figure, so I wanted to play too. But I don't really care about Samus, so I went and got Figma Robocop instead. Let's see if I enjoy these "rather expensive for a 5 inch figure" toys.

Out of the box and it's pretty neat. a little flimsier than I would have expected, but otherwise good. I really love the posability of the figure and its sturdy enough not to need its figure-stand. On the downside, I have trouble getting some of the accessories to stick properly and I don't even want to try messing with the figure to put in the alternate leg pieces. I can't find the steams or figure out the proper way to pop the thigh parts off. I worry I'm going to break it. Otherwise I kinda like this.

But, I'm interested in what you can do with this scale, so I picked up one of the Figma Ride vehicles. In this case an amusement park Bear Car. How does Robocop look on it.

Hmm... Not perfectly to scale, but close enough. What about some other 5 inch figures?

Huh. So that's a thing.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Dynamic Duo Funhouse Escape

Ever since I got back into Legos, I've wanted a Lego Riddler. Alas, I had to wait for the return of Batman Legos this year to get one. And then they only released the Riddler as part of this overly large Lego set. I saw it at Toys R Us for $50, mocking me, because even though I wanted all the minifigures, I wasn't paying $50 for it. Of course that's all due to Toys R Us markup, at the actual Lego store you can get this set for $40. Sold.

There's a batcycle made from technic pieces and a carnival set. Actually the carnival set is pretty cool. You get an on-rails rollercoaster cart and many of the parts are designed for play value. There's trap doors that open up, a giant swinging mallet that will knock characters over (and even knock them into the roller coaster cart), and there's a winch to lower any hostages into the fish barrel. There's even a spare Riddler head to be used in one of the Carnival Games. For $40, this is a pretty good set.

Also, as mentioned, awesome minifigs. You get Joker, Riddler, Harley, Batman, Robin...

... heck, you even get exclusive minifigures of Thomas and Martha Wayne!

Or maybe I'm just making crap up at this point.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day

It's election day. I'd ask you to vote, but if you'd vote for whoever I don't want to win then I'd feel like a fool. So vote, but only if you plan to vote like me. And hopefully you have some sort of telepathy, because I'm not telling you how I'm voting.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Balance Beam

I was so happy to find someone that still had this set in stock. I've been looking for this ever since I found out about it. I grew up around family really into gymnastics, so I remember watching a lot of balance beam as a kid.

Of course the use of a ball and hoop means this set can be used for a rhythmic gymnastics set. I also love that the balance beam is designed so that figures can stand on their hands. Suddenly you can make figures tumble. Awesome.

AMP Episode 57: Star Wars

There wasn't any interesting toy news this week, so instead on the Articulated Monster Podcast, we talk about Disney buying Star Wars. And my friend Aya joins us. Even though it's about Star Wars, Mario maintains his average word count per episode. I almost called this episode "Mario Doesn't Talk About Star Wars" as a joke.


Friday, November 2, 2012

Gymnast with Pommel Horse

I love the Olympic Playmobil figures. Sure they might be called "Sports" figures, but let's face it, they're all Summer Olympic sports. I particularly love the accessories that they come with, since it means I can pick up some sports accessories for all the Playmobil figures I have. So the Gymnast's Pommel horse can suddenly become the Pommel horse for a Civil War General!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Daredevil and the Sin Eater

Can I just say that the Sin Eater has the most underwhelming supervillain costume ever. I know that Batman has a bunch of supervillains that have no powers, but a guy running around with a ski mask and a shotgun doesn't get to call himself a supervillain. Even if he is being hunted by Spider-man and Daredevil. Although I actually don't know anything about the Sin Eater. And I really don't need another Daredevil minimate. But I had to get this set to get the Aunt May variant, so here we are.

And yes I opened it anyway.