Thursday, December 31, 2015

Action Figure Review: Prahvus from Masters of the Universe Classics by Mattel

 Today I'm looking at the last figure in the Club 200x subscription from Mattel's Masters of the Universe Classics line: Prahvus! While Prahvus really is just a glorified villain of the week in the Mike Young Productons cartoon series, he's an incredibly well designed character who really is tons of fun to add in to your MOTUC collection. Looking like something out of a Dungeons & Dragons Monster Manual, Prahvus adds another independent villain to your action figure shelf. Ready for a closer look at Prahvus the Untamed? Then join me after the break...

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Action Figure Review: Pink Yoshi from World of Nintendo by Jakks Pacific

 Jakks Pacific's World of Nintendo series of action figures has quickly become one of my favorite lines to collect. It's exciting because so many of the characters we're seeing in this line really haven't been widely available as action figures before (and at least not in a similar scale and style). This line is filled with unique sculpts due to the interesting and often bizarre proportions of Nintendo characters so it makes sense that Jakks would try to recoup the tooling costs of new molds here and there by creating some simple paint variants. One of the easiest ways to do that is releasing multiple color variants of Yoshi, a character who legitimately does have an army of multicolored brothers and sisters. Today I'm looking at the first repaint of the standard Yoshi figure that was released late last year: Pink Yoshi! Ready for a closer look at this pink dinosaur from series 1-3 of Jakk's World of Nintendo line? Then join me after the break...

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Action Figure Review: AJ Lee (Series 53) from WWE by Mattel

   While the current version of WWE history credits Paige with starting the Diva's Revolution, you could absolutely make an argument that AJ Lee deserves some of the credit, too. While AJ Lee retired earlier this year and the WWE is reluctant to even mention her (and made sure that Nikki Bella surpassed one of her records as quickly as possible), Mattel still had this figure in the works and thus could be the last AJ Lee figure released for quite some time. Ready for a closer look at the Geek Goddess, the Crazy Chick, and the Black Widow herself, AJ Lee? Then join me after the break...

Monday, December 28, 2015

Action Figure Review: Tyler Breeze from WWE by Mattel

  Tyler Breeze is a great villain because he doesn't even have to try and draw cheap heat; he just naturally comes off as a arrogant jerk whom you want to see get beaten up! Mattel really lucked out with the release of this figure as Tyler Breeze just entered the main WWE roster back in October after having spent a few years with NXT. While this figure from Series 53 is based off of his NXT appearance, it's not often that collectors get a figure of a character right near their appearance on the main programs. Breeze's gimmick as a stuck up, narcissistic supermodel really is pretty fun. He's like Hansel in Zoolander before you realize that Hansel's actually a pretty good guy. So far Breeze's main rival has been Dolph Ziggler and their feud has actually been pretty entertaining, particularly with the presence of Summer Rae and her history with Dolph. Gear up for the Beauty Shot and learn more about this figure after the break...

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Action Figure Review: Metroid from World of Nintendo by Jakks Pacific

 The deluxe figures in the second series of Jakks Pacific's World of Nintendo line have proven insanely difficult to find. They were released in late spring and I only just managed to receive my set in the mail through Big Bad Toy Store within the past few weeks. Jakks has a great thing going with this line but they're really going to have to up their distribution. I think it's one of the problems that hits a line with multiple different sizes, particularly a smaller line: World of Nintendo has the 2.5 inch figures, the standard 4-5 inch stuff, the 6 inch "deluxe" figures, the stuffed plushies, the remote control stuff, and the micro worlds. That's a lot of varying scales for a line that's lucky to get a row of shelf space at Toys 'R Us! Anyways, today I'm looking at a Metroid from Nintendo's Metroid series of video games. Ready for a closer look at this energy draining alien? Then join me after the break...

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Action Figure Review: Leatherface from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre ReAction by Funko

   The figures that originally really got me into Funko's ReAction range of figures were the Universal Monsters and the ReAction Horror Series. There was just something about having a wide variety of classic movie monsters in the charming faux-Kenner format that was insanely appealing to me and I really jumped on board with the line. While my passion for it has somewhat dwindled over the past year due to some questionable licenses and a lack of follow up series for seemingly successful lines like Universal Monsters and the Horror Series, I was really looking forward to Leatherface. Interestingly, Leatherface is not part of the catch all ReAction Horror Series like his fellow cinematic slashers; he's actually sold directly under the Texas Chainsaw Massacre name (this was apparently a request by the license holder). While we've already had the excellent NECA Ultimate Leatherface released this year, Funko's ReAction Leatherface is a completely different take on the same character. Ready for a closer look? Then join me after the break...

Friday, December 25, 2015

Action Figure Review: Ganondorf from World of Nintendo by Jakks Pacific

 A few years ago I wrote a review of some older Legend of Zelda action figures from 1998 where I kind of lamented the fact that there were so few Nintendo based toys on shelves for kids and collectors. Maybe someone from Jakks Pacific read that article because over the last year or so Jakks has been doing a pretty awesome job of delivering us some incredibly cool Nintendo based toys. So far we've received figures from Nintendo properties such as Super Mario Brothers, Donkey Kong, Metroid, Star Fox, and The Legend of Zelda, and it's a figure from that last property which I'm looking at today. One of the series 2 deluxe figures, released earlier this year, is Ganondorf from The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. Let me tell you that this guy has been tough to find. I finally ordered mine when Big Bad Toy Store got their orders in. They still have them in stock, but they've raised the price a bit. Jakks needs to really work on improving their distribution as some of the figures in this line have been a beast to find! Now that I have the evil Ganondorf, let's jump in and take a closer look at him, shall we? Join me after the break...

Thursday, December 24, 2015

A New Batgirl Review: Batgirl from Vinyl Idolz: Batman Classic TV Series by Vinyl Sugar

 One of the interesting things about collecting almost everything related to a specific character is that you run across some really interesting things. I've picked up quite a range of not just action figures but also Batgirl statues, dolls, vinyl figures, salt and pepper shakers, and even smart phone covers, and it's fun to see the variety of product available. Unfortunately, sometimes collecting almost everything based on a specific character means you end up with some real stinkers as well, which is perhaps the most polite way I can summarize the subject of today's review: The Vinyl Idolz 1966 Batgirl from Vinyl Sugar. This product is so flawed that not only am I already dumping on it in the first paragraph of the review but I'm actually going to change the format of the review. Usually I cover the positives aspects of a product first and then go over the negative aspects. Today I'm flipping that around because I don't even have much positive to say. Ready for a closer look? Then join me after the break...

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A New Batgirl Review: Batgirl from The New Batman Adventures by DC Collectibles

  I've really liked the two figures I've purchased from DC Collectible's Batman: The Animated Series and The New Batman Adventures lines but I've held off from jumping into this line full steam ahead. Some early quality control problems in the line kept me from jumping in right away while the sheer number of Batman figures and higher end Batgirl collectibles available this year has forced me to be a bit more selective in my buying. I knew that I'd be buying Batgirl, however, and I just received her in the mail a couple of weeks ago. Based on her redesign from The New Batman Adventures, this version of Babs not only features a different costume but has a radically different body design than the Batman: The Animated Series version (which means that we'll hopefully get another Batgirl figure in this line soon!). Ready for a closer look at this Bruce Timm inspired Batgirl figure? Then join me after the break...

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Action Figure Review: Arkham Knight from Batman: Arkham Knight by DC Collectibles

 Today I'm looking at one of the newest Batman villains: The Arkham Knight. Having appeared in this past summer's Batman: Arkham Knight videogame as well as the tie-in comic books Batman: Arkham Knight and Batman: Arkham Knight GENESIS, 2015 has been a huge year for the Arkham Knight. It's always exciting to get a new Batman character or villain in action figure form but is the Arkham Knight a new character or a familiar face from Batman's past? Rocksteady Studios did a great job of keeping the identity of the Arkham Knight a secret although many Batman fans felt they had a pretty good ideas as to the character's identity. While a statement or two from Rocksteady Studios about the character turned out to not be true (or at least highly misleading), my initial guess was correct and the Arkham Knight was indeed.... Read more, with spoilers, after the break...

Monday, December 21, 2015

Action Figure Review: Paige (Series 57) from WWE by Mattel

   Are you a tougher critic of the things you love? I've been thinking about that lately as I've been contemplating a number of reviews I've written this past year and a few reviews I've been preparing to write. Take Paige, for example. If I weren't a huge Paige fan, I doubt I'd point out as many flaws in this figure. At the same time, I probably give most MOTUC figures higher reviews than I would for similar reviews because I love the property so much. Anyways, today I'm looking at the series 57 Paige from Mattel's basic WWE line. It's the second Paige figure Mattel has produced and it's largely based on the first version of Paige released earlier this year, a figure that I was kind of iffy about. Today I'm giving Paige a second go around. Have my thoughts on this sculpt changed much in the past few months? Join me after the break and find out....


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Action Figure Review: Charlotte from WWE by Mattel

As I'm writing this it's Sunday afternoon and it's about 3 hours until TLC starts and Charlotte will be defending the Divas championship against Paige.  Just for full disclosure, I'm absolutely going to be cheering for Paige. I really like Charlotte but when she goes up against Paige or Becky Lynch? Not so much. Today I'm looking at another figure from Mattel's "basic" WWE line and it's Charlotte in her NXT outfit. Mattel was working on this figure before Charlotte got bumped up to the main roster as part of the Diva's Revolution this past summer so there's no title included or reference to her "Do it with Flair" catchphrase on her outfit. Still, that's nothing new as we know that the Mattel WWE figures typically lag around 6 months to a year behind their television counterparts. Charlotte had a great NXT run and has been a huge hit on the main WWE Divas roster, as well, but how does she fare in action figure form? Read on and find out after the break...

Action Figure Review: Sandtrooper Sergeant, Crimson Stormtrooper, Lieutenant Oxixo, and R2-Q5 from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

Today is December 16th, 2015, so guess what everyone in the US will be doing tomorrow? Probably going to one of the early screenings of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, that's what! To help get you through one more day I'm giving you a review of not one, not two, not three, but four new figures in the Star Wars Black Series! Today I'm looking at the new Entertainment Earth exclusive boxed set that contains four Imperial figures: Sandtrooper Sergeant, Crimson Stormtrooper, Lieutenant Oxixo, and R2-Q5. While the Amazon exclusive 4 pack featured some troopers we needed to fill out our rosters, this one has some real oddballs (including a guy based on some poster artwork). If you're looking for four of the most odd and random Imperial troops you can find, you've come to the right place. Since this set features no new sculpting at all (everything in here is a repaint of figures I've already reviewed) I'm doing what I did on the last 4 pack and simply pointing out the differences between these figures and their predecessors and the strengths and weaknesses. If you want full coverage of the base figures here, check out my reviews of the Sandtrooper, Stormtrooper, Tie Pilot, and R2-D2. If you're ready to take a look at these new figures, though, then join me after the break...

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Action Figure Review: Konnor & Viktor (The Ascension) from WWE Battle Packs by Mattel

   Today I'm looking at another Battle Pack from Mattel's WWE series of action figures: Konnor & Viktor, AKA The Ascension! While they're not one of the most prominent tag teams in the WWE right now, The Ascension definitely has a unique look that hearkens back to The Road Warriors. While these are "basic" figures, meaning they have less articulation and entrance gear, who knows if we'll see ever see The Ascension in Mattel's Elite series. While they had a tremendous run in NXT, Konnor & Viktor haven't exactly had a stellar run in WWE. Currently they're teamed up with Stardust as part of The Cosmic Wasteland but they're not getting that much focus. I watch the condensed Hulu versions of Raw and SmackDown and I can't remember the last time I've seen these guys on there. Still, they're cool looking figures. Ready for a quick look at Konnor and Viktor and some helpful tips for telling them apart? Then join me after the break...

Action Figure Review: Chewbacca from Star Wars Hero Mashers by Hasbro

 Can you believe it? We're only a couple of days away from the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens! Today I'm looking at a character from the Original Trilogy who made appearances in one of the prequels (Revenge of the Sith) and in Clone Wars and who will return for The Force Awakens: The mighty Chewbacca! My little two-year old loves Star Wars Hero Mashers and she loves Chewbacca (her Chewbacca impression is incredible) so this figure has been a huge hit. I managed to steal Chewbacca away from playtime long enough to review him here. Ready for a closer look at everyone's favorite Wookie? Then join me after the break...

Monday, December 14, 2015

Action Figure Review: Dragstor from Masters of the Universe Classics by Mattel

   Today I'm looking at Dragstor from Mattel's Masters of the Universe Classics and I have to say that holding this figure in my hand really does feel like kind of a milestone. While Dragstor isn't the last vintage Masters of the Universe figure in the line (as of my writing this the Laser Power He-Man and Skeletor twp-pack hasn't shipped yet), Dragstor here does symbolize that every vintage character from the MOTU and Princess of Power toylines has been recreated in a modern consistent toyline. While Hasbro is still getting there with their G.I. Joe line (and may reach that point), what Mattel has done is an amazing feat. Heck, even Hasbro has yet to release a few of the vintage Star Wars Kenner characters in their modern lines. All things considered, it's been a good journey. Sadly, while the journey has always been a bit rocky, the end of the path has been incredibly unpleasant as over the past few months we have seen some really questionable actions and decisions made by Mattel's MOTU team (I'm referring to Mattel's in-house team, not the Four Horsemen). Besides some noticeably weaker figures in the main subscription (the 200x sub has been amazing) we've experienced a few months of silence and unanswered questions from Mattel, the King Hsss Snake torso dropped from the sub, the Point Dredd Teela fiasco, and a questionably worded letter to the fans that seemed to imply Mattel corporate executives were reading angry forum postings.

     Anyways, how does that lead us to Dragstor? He's a real mixed bag. He's got some problems, some oversights, some questionable decisions, and some really cool ideas all mixed together, kind of like the last six months of this line. Ready for a closer look at this motorized maniac? Then join me after the break...

Action Figure Review: Darth Maul from Star Wars Hero Mashers by Hasbro

 It's not very often that I'm truly surprised to stumble upon a toy at retail. For most lines that I collect I know months in advance exactly what's coming out and when. This Darth Maul, however, surprised me. If you've been my reviews of the Star Wars Hero Mashers figures, you know that while I like these it's actually my little 2 year old who loves them. She's nuts about them and I've been picking them all up for her. We found series 2 near the beginning of November which prompted me to do a little Google searching for any hint of an upcoming Star Wars Hero Mashers series 3. Interestingly, when I searched this guy popped up. I'm a huge fan of Darth Maul and I love this look for him from Clone Wars! Not only was this figure a surprise to me but he was in stock on Amazon for around $11 shipped. A couple of days later he showed up and I was able to present him to my little one. We've been having a blast with him! Read more about him after the break...

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Action Figure Review: Tie Fighter Pilot #89 from POP! Star Wars by Funko

 We're less than a week away from the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and I'm continuing my countdown to this very special event with a look at another Star Wars figure from the new film. This time it's the POP! Star Wars Tie Fighter Pilot #89, an exclusive POP! included in the new Smuggler's Bounty delivery service from Funko. Ready to dive right in to this review? Then join me after the break...

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Action Figure Review: Captain Phasma [Chrome] #91 from POP! Star Wars by Funko

   Let's be honest: Even though we know almost nothing about the character, there are probably a few fans out there already getting Captain Phasma tattoos because of how cool the character looks. That's Star Wars for you! Anyways, today I'm looking at a figure of Captain Phasma that was included as an exclusive in the first Star Wars Smuggler's Bounty blind box from Funko. I've done a blind box before (Loot Crate) and while I loved the diversity of items, very often I ended up with items from properties I just didn't care that much about. Smuggler's Bounty is all Star Wars, all the time., and I will pretty much take anything Star Wars I can get my hands on. Add in that my wife, daughter, and pretty much everyone in my life whom I respect all like Star Wars and I could pretty easily pawn off anything I might get that doesn't interest me. The Smuggler's Bounty box also ships every other month, so it's a bit more manageable than a monthly charge. While there was a good bit of cool stuff in it, the fact that it came with two exclusive Funko POP! figures seemed like a pretty sure bet that there's always be something cool inside. The Star Wars POP! figures are all bobble-heads, probably to skirt some legal exclusivity issue that Hasbro has on making Star Wars figures, so this is effectively a bobble-head of Captain Phasma. While there is a Captain Phasma POP! already out there, this one is covered in vac metalized chrome. Pretty special, huh? Learn more about this figure after the break...

Friday, December 11, 2015

Action Figure Review: Bray Wyatt (Series #55) from WWE by Mattel

  It's time for another review of a Bray Wyatt figure!  He's part of the 55th series of figures in Mattel's basic WWE line and was actually a figure I picked up on black Friday. While I've thus far skipped all of the basic Bray Wyatt figures, this one has a unique and more expressive head sculpt that really separates it from the previous figures. Bray's also decked out in the in-ring attire that he's worn throughout the past year a few times. Bray Wyatt arguably builds the best hype in the WWE right now and is definitely one of the best presences in the WWE, but he really needs some wins to make him seem more intimidating. He needs to really crush some opponents, you know? Anyways, let's get right into this look at the Eater of Worlds, right after the break...

Action Figure Review: Finn (Jakku) from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

 Who is Finn? That's a question that most of us have been pondering since last year when he was first revealed in the teaser trailer. We know he's a former First Order Stormtrooper (designation FN-2187) who meets Rey on Jakku, joins the resistance, and at some point wields Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber (the one Luke lost on Bespin) against Kylo Ren. That's it. While a number of characters from the Force Awakens have had their full names revealed (Poe Dameron, Maz Kanata, Sarco Plank), Finn's has been kept secret. Like Rey, it seems heavily implied that Finn might have some relationship to a character or characters we already know. Regardless of his background, Finn's future seems to be set as being of the main cast in the new Star Wars adventures set 30 years after the Battle of Endor. Finn was released as part of the first series of The Black Series Phase III and has been on shelves for a few months. Honestly, he's been a bit of a peg-warmer to some degree, but I'm sure that will change once we learn more about him. Let's take a closer look at Finn, shall we?

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Action Figure Review: Jesse Pinkman from Breaking Bad ReAction by Funko

 Today I'm looking at another figure that came with my GameStop exclusive Funko Mystery Box that I purchased on black Friday: Jessee Pinkman from the Breaking Bad ReAction line. Like with the Casey Newton figure from Tomorrowland that I reviewed yesterday, Breaking Bad is another property that I just don't have a connection to. I'd love to watch it at some point since everyone is pretty much in unanimous agreement that it's incredible. While on my Tomorrowland review I commented that ReAction figures really work best with properties that fans have a nostalgic or childhood connection too, I also think the other thing that works with the line is when the subject matter is decidedly adult. Having a clearly non-kid friendly properly juxtaposed with a very kid friendly design is just too entertaining. While I know next to nothing about Breaking Bad, here's a short look at the Jesse Pinkman figure from the line. More after the break...

Action Figure Review: Kylo Ren (Starkiller Base) from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

 As we get closer and closer to the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the character of Kylo Ren grows more and more intriguing. Who exactly will this new villain be? The son of Han and Leia? A new dark Jedi obsessed with Darth Vader? Someone completely new and completely evil? There's not much time left to wait to uncover Kylo Ren's true identity, is there (assuming we learn it in this film)? While I reviewed the Black Series Kylo Ren figure that I picked up on Force Friday a couple of months ago, today I'm looking at a newer Kylo Ren figure: The K-Mart exclusive Kylo Ren from Starkiller Base. What exactly is Starkiller Base? While it's a clever nod to the early name for the main hero in George Lucas' early conceptualizations of Star Wars, it also seems to be the First Order's new super weapon that may be located on some snowy planet. Regardless of the specifics of what Starkiller Base is, this version of Kylo Ren is easily recognizable as being based on that first shot of the villain igniting his hilted lightsaber in the original teaser trailer from last year. Since I've so  reviewed the basic Kylo Ren Black Series figure so recently, today I'm just going to point out the differences between that figure and this exclusive figure. Ready for a closer look at this new dark warrior who is strong with the Force? Then join me after the break...

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Action Figure Review: Dolph Ziggler (Series 39) from WWE Elite Collection by Mattel

  Is there a harder working guy in the WWE than Dolph Ziggler? I'm sure there are some guys who get more matches and do more publicity stuff but when Dolph gets in the ring he always goes all out. Seriously, Dolph Ziggler's matches are always frantic and fun. He's just an entertaining presence inside (and outside) of the ring. I was really excited that Mattel was releasing an updated version of Dolph in series 39 of their WWE Elite collection and I'm really excited that I manged to snag one so soon! Unfortunately, I have to admit that there are some rather odd problems with this figure. Let's jump right in and take a closer look at "The Show Off." Join me after the break...

Action Figure Review: The Inquisitor from Star Wars Hero Mashers by Hasbro

   I'm really glad to see the cast of Rebels get some love in the Star Wars Hero Mashers line! While we're all definitely excited about Star Wars: The Force Awakens and counting down the days until it's release, Rebels has been a great series so far and is a really fun show but I kind of feel like it's gotten lost in the shuffle of the upcoming film. Hopefully since Hasbro is including Rebels figures in this line it means they think that kids are really gravitating to these characters. While I'm awaiting the appearance of the Rebels cast in the Black Series, I'm also hoping that Hasbro will finish the Rebels cast in the Mashers series, too. While he's not one of the Ghost crew, the Iniquistor is a pretty significant character in season 1. How does he fare in the Hero Mashers line? Find out after the break...

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Action Figure Review: Casey Newton from Tomorrowland ReAction by Funko


   Today I'm looking at a figure from a movie I've only seen the first forty minutes or so of: Tomorrowland. I was at a social event and it was playing in the background. It seemed interesting enough but why the movie didn't do too well in theaters is up for debate. Anyways, I ended up with this figure because I purchased one of the GameStop exclusive Funko Mystery Boxes that were available on Black Friday. For $20 dollars you could purchase a blind box filled with various Funko product. While I love ReAction figures, I wasn't too thrilled with what I ended up with. The first figure I received is the subject of today's review, Casey Newton. Played by Britt Robertson, Casey is the hero of the film (so far as I can tell, anyways) who finds her way to Tomorrowland. Ready for a closer look? Then join me after the break...

Action Figure Review: Greedo from Star Wars Hero Mashers by Hasbro

As we are all counting down to the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, here's another review of a classic trilogy character that has been introduced into the Star Wars Hero Mashers line. As part of the new series 2 of these figures, Greedo is a character who Star Wars fans love despite having little screen time (in the movies, anyway; he was on Clone Wars a bit more). I love how Star Wars characters who have such scant screen get treated like flipping royalty among Star Wars fans. I'm thrilled that we're still getting action figures of Greedo, despite him being a character who gets shot and killed about a minute after he is introduced. That's what I love about Star Wars. Anyways, ready for a closer look at Greedo? Then join me after the break...

Monday, December 7, 2015

Action Figure Review: Fire Mario from World of Nintendo by Jakks Pacific

  As we're getting close to Christmas and the end of the year, it's time to start thinking about what toy lines made a huge impact on us this past year. One line that I imagine I'll have to consider in my Top 10 Favorite Toy Lines of the Year list is Jakks Pacific's World of Nintendo. Even though it's kind of been a sleeper hit, there have been plenty of collectors (myself included) who now have a shelf filled with Nintendo characters that we never imagined we'd see in a consistent action figure form. Today I'm looking at another figure from the third series of figures in the basic line: Fire Mario. A variant of the standard Mario figure from series one, Fire Mario represents everyone's favorite plumber/ adventurer when he picks up a Fire Flower and gains the ability to hurl fire balls at his enemies. Wicked! Ready for a closer look at Fire Mario? Then join me after the break...

Action Figure Review: C-3PO from Star Wars Hero Mashers by Hasbro

 Today I'm taking a look at a figure in Hasbro's Star Wars Hero Mashers based on a character from the classic Star Wars trilogy who appears both in the prequel trilogy and the upcoming The Force Awakens: C-3PO! It's great to have a classic character such as C-3PO in the Star Wars Hero Mashers line. If you've been reading my reviews of these, you know that I'm really collecting this line because my little 2 year old loves them. She's crazy about these toys now and is really embracing the characters, too! While I'm waiting for a C-3PO to show up in the Black Series, Hasbro has still given us a pretty cool version in the Hero Mashers assortment, part of the 2nd wave of figures. Ready for a closer look? Then join me after the break...

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Action Figure Review: Admiral Ackbar from Star Wars Hero Mashers by Hasbro

  Two things: First, I love Admiral Ackbar. He might be my favorite Star Wars character (he's probably tied with Boba Fett). He's just so bizarrely awesome and he seems to capture everything I like about Star Wars. I've loved Admiral Ackbar for many years now and I was thrilled that he appeared in series 2 of the Star Wars Hero Mashers basic figures. Secondly, this figure and the rest of the series 2 Hero Mashers will be forever special to me because my little daughter spotted these during a toy run we went on together. If you remember back around Force Friday, I bought the entire series of Star Wars Hero Mashers so that her and I could play with them together. She really has taken to them and while she's still a bit too young to play with them unsupervised (the heads are a bit small when removed) we've had a great time with them so far. She always asks to play with them and we either set them up so she can knock them down with a giant Incredible Hulk playground ball or have wrestling matches with them. My wife was out with a friend for the day and so me and my little sidekick decided to go on an epic toy run. At our second stop, a Wal-Mart, we were checking out the action figures. My little one likes to look at the Hero Mashers and name all of the characters we have. As she was naming them, suddenly she stopped, got really excited, and exclaimed, "Different toys!" Sure enough most of wave 2 was in stock. We grabbed everyone new we could find. She was pumped and so was I because this was her first successful toy run! Way to go, Sweetie Bee! Ready for a closer look at my little one's newest score? Then join me after the break...

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Action Figure Review: Phase 1 Clone Trooper Commander, Phase II Clone Trooper, Imperial Stormtrooper, and First Order Stromtrooper Officer from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro:

On Force Friday not only did we find a decent amount of new Star Wars product in stores (well, some folks did anyways) but we were also overwhelmed by preorders and announcements for a number of retailer exclusive figure, mostly for the Black Series. Today I'm looking at one of the most impressive of those retailer exclusive sets: The Amazon exclusive 4-pack of the Phase I Clone Trooper Commander, the Phase II Clone Trooper, the Imperial Stormtrooper, and the First Order Stormtrooper Officer. I have a weakness for the armored troopers in Star Wars: The Black Series and I've been picking all of them up over the past two years or so. We're building a nice little army of Clones and Stormtroopers at this point in time and this set adds in a new trooper type (the Phase II Clone Trooper), two new trooper rankings (the Clone Commander and the First Order Stormtrooper Officer), and a battle damaged paint variant of the general, garden variety Stormtrooper. I preordered this set back in early September and, while it was scheduled for December, it actually arrived really early in November. How often does that happen? Since this is a pretty large review and I've basically reviewed all four of these figures before, I've structured it a bit differently than my standard reviews. Click through for lots of pictures, lots of words, and lots of troopers! More after the break...

Friday, December 4, 2015

Action Figure Review: Damien Mizdow from WWE Elite Collection by Mattel

 Are you ready for another WWE review? Today I'm taking a look at one of the newest figures from Mattel's WWE Elite Collection: The Series 39 Damien Mizdow! In 2014 Damien Sandow adopted the gimmick of being the Miz's stunt double. It was a pretty interesting gimmick and made for some very entertaining confrontations (I loved their break-up at the Royal Rumble). Unfortunately, it kind of just ended and left Damien Sandow stuck. Well, he did do The Meta Powers with Curtis Axel for a few months, but that ended when Hulk Hogan got fired from the WWE in July 2014. In the meantime, enjoy this review of a figure that's basically a stunt double of another figure I already own. Yup, just like the actual Damien Mizdow, this figure is wearing the exact same outfit as the series 37 Miz which I reviewed last month. To really get the full effect, you need both figures! Read on and find out why after the break...

Action Figure Review: Guavian Enforcer from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

    Every time a new Star Wars movie comes out there's always at least one or two figures released in advance that collectors gravitate to simply because of how cool the character's appearance is despite knowing little to anything about them. For Episode 1, the world collectively went notes over Darth Maul. For Episode 2, I remember being incredibly intrigued by the action figures for Luminara Unduli, Jango Fett, and Zam Wesell. For Episode III, I was all about Tion Medon. Some of those characters turned out to be pretty significant. Others were pretty minor. Today I'm looking at a character from Star Wars: The Black Series who could either be a major player in The Force Awakens or just a background character: The Guavian Enforcer. First mentioned in the book Smuggler's Run, the Guavian Death Gang has a perfect Star Wars name. I can totally hear some random character talking about the unscrupulous nature of the Guavian Death Gang or mentioning in passing a run in with the Guavians. This figure seems to represent one of the gang's enforcers, so perhaps this is just a nameless, faceless member of the gang. The guy certainly has some impressive armor, however, and thus has already earned a spot in the action figure line. Ready for a closer look at the Guavian Enforcer? Then join me after the break...

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Action Figure Review: First Order Snowtrooper Officer from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

   It's day three days of my December 2015 countdown to the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and I'm looking at another new Star Wars action figure release: The First Order Snowtrooper Officer from Phase III of Star Wars: The Black Series. The First Order Snowtrooper Officer is a Toys 'R Us exclusive and started appearing in stores in late October. It's interesting that we're getting this officer version of the Snowtrooper before the standard First Order Snowtrooper (he's scheduled to show up in a later series) and the Original Trilogy Snowtrooper. In fact, the Snowtrooper is the only one of the Stromtrooper variants from the Original Trilogy Hasbro hasn't released yet in the Black Series (technically they still need to release a Spacetrooper, too, but they're a bit more obscure). Anyways, how crazy is it that we're already getting so many First Order Stormtrooper variants in The Force Awakens? Let's take a closer look at this guy and enjoy the new Star Wars goodness we're getting!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Action Figure Review: Poe Dameron & First Order Riot Control Stromtrooper from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

 Today I'm looking at a Target exclusive two-pack of Star Wars: The Black Series figures: Poe Dameron and the First Order Riot Control Stormtrooper. I found these in late October and I've seen them on shelves at Target a few times now. I'm glad that a set this cool seems to be getting good distribution as of this writing, I've yet to see the K-Mart exclusive Kylo Ren from Starkiller Base or the Toys 'R Us First Order Snowtrooper Officer in stores. This set features one of the new First Order Troopers decked out in some riot armor and Poe Dameron, a heroic member of the Resistance in a more casual uniform. Ready for a look at this cool two-pack? Then join me after the break...

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Action Figure Review: Rey (Jakku) & BB-8 from Star Wars: The Black Series Phase III by Hasbro

 I hope you had an awesome Thanksgiving surrounded by family, friends, and loved ones and an epic Black Friday surrounded by other strangers willing to kill one another over an HDTV. Guess what holiday is next? Well, Hanukkah actually, if you're one of our Jewish friends. But after that? Yup, before Christmas there is another day that I'm anxiously looking forward to: The release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. It really is amazing, isn't it? We're so close to getting another Star Wars film! To celebrate the release of The Force Awakens I'm going to be attempting to review a Star Wars toy every day for the next 17 days followed by a review of the film on December 18th. Can I do it? Let's hope so! Today I'm looking at figure from the first series of the Black Series Phase III: Rey in her Jakku oufit, accompanied by BB-8. Rey is the mysterious desert scavenger played by Daisy Ridley. Is she's Luke Skywalker's daughter? Han and Leia's daughter? Obi-Wan Kenobi's secret love child with duchess Satine Kryze of Mandalore? Well, we can rule that one out because it would make Rey around 50 which is clearly not the case here. Rey also comes packaged with the already beloved droid, BB-8. Two of the main stars from the new Star Wars film in one package. Who could resist? I couldn't, which is why you'll read the review I've written right after the break...

Monday, November 30, 2015

Action Figure Review: Stephanie McMahon (Series 40) from WWE by Mattel



 Today I'm looking at a figure of the WWE's Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon! This figure is from Mattel's "Basic" WWE line which doesn't have a special title like the Elite Collection or the Defining Moments series. While I already own the SummerSlam 2014 Stephanie McMahon from Elite series 37, this version appealed to me because it definitely captures how Stephanie looks most of the time: Ready for business, not brawling. As a long term action figure collector, it's also interesting to me to see a mass market retailer action figure that is simply a female in a suit. How often do we see that? Most toy manufacturers and lines at retail do everything they can to avoid making females and here is the WWE line getting a Stephanie McMahon figure in a simple black pantsuit. I think that either shows the power of the WWE as a brand or the fact that no one wants to piss off an owner of the company. Ready for a quick look at the most powerful woman in the WWE? Then join me after the break...

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Action Figure Review: Oogie Boogie from The Nightmare Before Christmas by Diamond Select Toys

 Oogie Boogie is one of my favorite bad guys ever. He's the boogeyman portrayed as an old fashioned nightclub singer (voiced by singer and actor Ken Page) who's actually a giant sack full of bugs. What's not to like? The Nightmare Before Christmas is without a doubt one of the most toyetic films ever made and everyone knows it: I can name at least 10 companies who have released toy lines based on the movie right off of the top of my head. I had the original Hasbro Oogie Boogie as a kid but I somehow missed out on the cool Oogie Boogie versus Jack 2-pack from NECA that was released in the mid 2000s. Now that Diamond Select is taking a swing at The Nightmare Before Christmas I knew I was going to have to pick up Oogie Boogie to supplement my NECA collection. If you're at all familiar with Diamond Select's action figures, you know they typically run around $25, are usually a bit larger than your average action figure, come packaged in an elaborate blister card, and feature some very nice display bases. Over the past few years Diamond Select has been releasing some less elaborate versions of their figures at Toys 'R Us as exclusives for around $12-$15 dollars. Typically these figures feature a paint difference, different head sculpt, or are simply missing the elaborate bases and dioramas of the mainstream figures. That's the case for Jack and Sally, two of the figures in Diamond Select's first series of Nightmare Before Christmas figures, but it's not the case for Oogie Boogie. The $25 Oogie Boogie you might purchase at your local comic shop or offline is exactly the same as the $13 Oogie Boogie you'll find at Toys 'R Us. I have to admit that I've never seen an action figure company truly release the exact same figure at two different price points. How bizarre? Just note that when I'm reviewing this, I'm reviewing this as a $13 figure I bought at Toys 'R Us while on an epic toy run with my 2 year old last month. Ready for a closer look at Oogie Boogie? Then join me after the break....

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Action Figure Revew: Queen Grayskull from Masters of the Universe Classics by Mattel

 If Queen Grayskull were the last figure released in the Masters of the Universe Classics toyline, I'd be just fine. She's a really cool character that has felt like a missing spot in the Powers of Grayskull era of the toyline for quite a few years now. While Mattel is calling her Queen Grayskull in Masters of the Universe Classics, her real name is listed as Veena and that's certainly the name that fans of the Mike Young Productions animated series know her by. A precursor to the Sorceress, Veena is a larger than life character who, like her husband King Grayskull, sets a number of things into motion that will set the stage for He-Man and She-Ra to rise up! Queen Grayskull is the November figure in the 2015 Club 200x mini sub and I imagine she's probably the most popular figure in that line. She's a major player who is finally getting her due. Ready for a closer look at Veena? Then join me after the break...

Friday, November 27, 2015

Action Figure Review: Terror Claws Skeletor & Flying Fists He-Man from Masters of the Universe Classics by Mattel

  As I said during my Perfuma review yesterday, this year Masters of the Universe Classics has been all about finishing the vintage Masters of the Universe lines. While Princess of Power is only getting the unique figures completed (no variants), Masters of the Universe is getting every figure redone, including all of the He-Man and Skeletor variants. Today I'm looking at the 2015 fourth quarter oversized set:The Terror Claws Skeletor and Flying Fists He-Man two-pack. Based on two variants released in the vintage line in 1986, this set gives us another version of He-Man and Skeletor. I'm going to say right up front that I'm not a big fan of this set. I've really liked most of the He-Man and Skeletor variants that have been released (they've been some of my favorite figures in the line) but this set really feels rather weak. Instead of doing anything to escalate the original designs and improve on them in anyway, this really feels like nothing more than a rehash of some vintage figures that just weren't that exciting. Read on and find out why this set really isn't worth your time after the break...

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Action Figure Review: Perfuma from Masters of the Universe Classics by Mattel

2015 has been the year that Masters of the Universe Classics has focused on wrapping up the vintage Masters of the Universe line and the vintage non-variant figures from the Princess of Power line. It seems like every month or two we have another faction completed and today we have Perfuma, the last member of both the vintage Great Rebellion and the last non-variant member of the vintage POP roster (I have a feeling that Mattel is never going to release Starburst She-Ra and the Catra variants). Perfuma was part of the second series of POP figures (originally released in 1986) and thus, like most of the POP ladies, has both a toy design and a Filmation design. Like with a few other POP figures, Mattel has gone for a blended look. How'd it turn out? Read on and learn more after the break...

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Action Figure Review: Ceratus from Masters of the Universe Classics by Mattel

 I've been a bit behind with all of my Halloween reviews from last month and my WWE reviews leading up to Survivor Series 2015 but I'm finally getting around to looking at the November 2015 Masters of the Universe Classics Figures. Today I'm looking at the fourth figure in the Club 200x subscription, Ceratus. A Caligar, Ceratus is the leader of his people and the brother of Skeletor's henchman Whiplash. While Ceratus didn't have a massive role in the Mike Young Productions He-Man and the Masters of the Universe animated series, he'd definitely a cool character visually. He has a perfect barbarian/ fantasy vibe and looks right at home among the other MOTU heroes and villains. Ready for a closer look at this guy? Then join me after the break...

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Action Figure Review: Fox McCloud from World of Nintendo by Jakks Pacific

   I still can't get over how cool of a concept Jakks Pacific's World of Nintendo line is. It's only been going for about a year and I now have all of the Mario crew on my shelf plus Link, Samus Aran, Donkey Kong, and now Fox McCloud! It's tough to say who is the most wanted figure from series 3 between Princess Peach and Fox McCloud, but there's no doubt that Fox has legions of fans. Today I'm looking at Fox McCloud. Ready for a closer look? Then join me after the break...

Monday, November 23, 2015

Action Figure Review: Goomba from World of Nintendo by Jakks Pacific

 A month or so ago I walked into my local Toys 'R Us and found the remainder of series 3 of Jakks Pacific's World of Nintendo line. While I managed to find a Princess Peach (my most wanted figure from this series) the Goomba and Star Fox were long gone. A couple of weeks later I walked back in the same store and, lo and behold, they had restocked and I was able to snag both the Goomba and Fox McCloud. Today I'm looking at the Goomba, one of Mario's oldest foes. Seriously, if you're around my age (early 30s) then the Goomba may have very well been the first enemy you killed in a videogame. It certainly was for me. Based on the appearance of a shitake mushroom, the Goomba is without a doubt one of the most iconic videogame villains of all time. Ready to jump in and smash this guy up? Then join me after the break...

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Action Figure Review: Roman Reigns (Series 38) from WWE Elite Collection by Mattel

I just got this Roman Reigns figure from the new WWE Elite Collection series 38 and, since I he's going to play a big part in tonight's Survivor Series 2015 event, I figured I'd jump in and review him quickly. What do you think is going to happen tonight? I think it's going to be Reigns versus Owens at Survivor Series for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship (although I'm pulling for Dean Ambrose). I don't think Roman Reigns is going to walk out of Sunday night holding the title, though. I think that either Kevin Owens will win at Survivor Series or that Reigns will win and Seamus will cash in his Money in the Bank contract as soon as Roman wins. We shall see, won't we? Enjoy the fight later tonight and enjoy this toy review of the series 38 Roman Reigns, based on his appearance at WrestleMania 31, after the break...

Action Figure Review: Seth Rollins (Seth Cashes In!) from WWE Elite Collection: WrestleMania 31 by Mattel

 While today is the day for Survivor Series 2015 (Yeah!!!) it sucks that as I'm writing this the tournament for determining who will fight for Seth's vacated title is ongoing. Yeah, Seth Rollin's injury at a house show in Dublin, Ireland that caused some pretty serious damage to his knee and required surgery is supposed to leave him out of action for up to 9 months. Here's a guy who had a successful run with the Shield, became Mr. Money in the Bank 2014, stole the show and the title at WrestleMania 31, beat John Cena for the US Championship, and has continued to successfully defend the World Heavyweight Championship on a number of occasions who has now had to vacate the title and will miss a number of major events for 2016. Seth is an awesome performer and a great wrestler who always stole the show every time he had the chance. Today I'm looking at a figure that honors one of his biggest accomplishments: Cashing in the 2014 Money in the Bank contract during the Reigns/ Lesnar title match at WrestleMania. This figure is a Toys 'R Us exclusive and didn't take me too many trips to find. I found it on my second trip to my nearest TRU and they had plenty on the shelves. Ready for a closer look at The Man himself? Then join me after the break...

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Action Figure Review: Stone Cold Steve Austin from WWE Elite Collection: Hall of Fame by Mattel

 I mostly pick up the newer WWE Superstars, but how could I not pick up a figure of Stone Cold Steve Austin? I've been playing WWE 2K16 on Xbox One and this year Stone Cold Steve Austin is the focus of the campaign mode. I was out on a toy run at Target when I stumbled across this figure from Mattel's Hall of Fame spin-off of their WWE Elite Collection. After picking him and looking at some pictures from previous Mattel releases, I've come to believe that a great deal of this figure is reused from the WWE Legends series 1 Stone Cold Steve Austin figure that was released a few years back. Ready for a closer look at the Texas Rattlesnake who pretty much defined the WWF Attitude Era of the 90s? Then join me after the break...

Friday, November 20, 2015

Action Figure Review: Sargent Slaughter from WWE Elite Collection: Hall of Fame by Mattel


I have two things I want to say before beginning this review. The first is that, yes, I know Sargent is spelled incorrectly in the title of this review. That's because Mattel actually spelled it like that on the packaging. It literally says "Sargent Slaughter." Bizarre, huh? Anyways, I'm calling him Sgt. Slaughter, because that's how the name is really spelled. Secondly, as you can tell from most of my reviews I'm definitely a modern wrestling fan who didn't pay much attention to wrestling when I was a kid. I grabbed the Sarge, though, because I love G.I. Joe. There's not a lack of G.I. Joe figures on this site because I don't love G.I. Joe; it's because Hasbro only wants to release exclusives and repaints of figures I already own. If we ever get the 6 inch G.I. Joe: Black Series figures that many fans are interested in seeing, it'll be cool to have a Sgt. Slaughter to boss them around. Anyways, now that I've said those two things, let's take a look at Sgt. Slaughter, AKA Robert Remus, from Mattel's WWE Elite Collection: Hall of Fame subset. This figure seems to be a Target exclusive and seems to borrow pretty heavily from the older WWE Legends Series 1 Sgt. Slaughter. Of course, this one is wearing camo, so I think it's automatically a cooler figure. Ready for a closer look? Then join me after the break...

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Action Figure Review: Daniel Bryan (Series 38) from WWE Elite Collection by Mattel

 Daniel Bryan, man. Who doesn't like this guy? Everyone friggin' loves Daniel Bryan. And why shouldn't they? He's a great wrestler and just seems like an all around good guy. He seems to be pretty popular with the collectors because Mattel also cranks out the Daniel Bryan figures left and right. Today I'm looking at the new Daniel Bryan from the 38th series of the WWE Elite Collection. He's the first figure from this series I've managed to find. Since I didn't have a Daniel Bryan yet and because this toy was new and shiny I added him to my cart. Ready for a closer look at this new version of Daniel Bryan? If your answer was "Yes!" then join me after the break...

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Action Figure Review: Mark Henry (Series 32) from WWE Elite Collection by Mattel

Who is ready for another WWE Elite Collection review! I promise you that I haven't become an all wrestling review site: I'm really catching up on a number of figures I picked up in October that I put off reviewing due to all of the Halloween and Re-Halloween reviews I did. Today I'm looking at a figure from a year or two pack: The series 32 Mark Henry. I like Mark Henry just fine and while he's not a major player these days in the WWE, the guy still manages to show up pretty often. What really sold me on this figure are the accessories. Besides being a large figure, Mark also comes with an electric razor, the bottom set of ring steps, and a break apart table. That's a crazy amount of accessories! I actually found Mark Henry on sale on Amazon for less than $20 (maybe around $15?) so I felt like I got a real steal. How's the figure, though? Well, join me after the break for a review of the World's Strongest Man...