Sunday, October 4, 2015

Arkham Origins - DR. HARLEEN QUINZEL!

Batman: Arkham Origins - 3-Pack - Dr. Harleen Quinzel - DC Collectibles 2015

I'm normally not one for plain-clothed action figures, but I knew when this figure was first revealed at ToyFair '15 that she would be a no-brainer for me. Harley Quinn has one of my favorite origin stories of all Batman's rogues. As a Psychiatrist in Arkham Asylum, Dr. Harleen Quinzel crossed paths with the Joker and began her descent into (quirky) madness. In more recent origin stories, she was showing tendencies toward insanity long before meeting her Mistah J. But I think I'll always prefer the original story where she was seduced into her criminal transformation. When the Arkham Origins game was announced, I was a little bummed because I thought my favorite ladies wouldn't fit into the earlier storylines. But Harley is the darling of the Arkham franchise, so of course they found a way to squeeze her in. This figure comes in a three-figure set with Electrocutioner and Lady Shiva.  It's pretty cool to get a female majority in a box set like this. We don't see that too often. Let's check out Dr. Quinzel below!

Saturday, October 3, 2015

The New Batman Adventures - POISON IVY!

The New Batman Adventures - 08 - Poison Ivy - DC Collectibles 2015

This Timm-verse Animated series from DC Collectibles is as near to perfection as any toy line I can think of in recent memory.  The sculpts (by Irene Matar) are spot-on, the articulation is incorporated expertly into the design, and the quality of the plastics used is very thought-out and intentional. I believe this Poison Ivy figure was originally slated to come out this past Spring, but there were production delays due to the QC concerns with the first few figures released this time last year.  My Catwoman was fine, but I appreciate the efforts toward perfection.  I'm hoping we'll get all animated versions of these character eventually. At least a BTAS one to compliment Catwoman (and likewise, a TNBA Catwoman to go with this Ivy). This line has almost unlimited potential in my opinion, but I'm still glad we're getting some of the second-tier characters first.  Poison Ivy only appear four times in TNBA, but her bond with Harley Quinn has skyrocketed her popularity.  Let's check out Poison Ivy in detail below!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

WWE Superstar - SUMMER RAE!

WWE Basic Series 50 - Superstar #35 - Summer Rae - Mattel 2015

This Summer Rae figure became a minor obsession for me this summer.  I first found her in Target many months ago but I had to pass because her hair wasn't attached properly.  Then every month I would spot another.. only to find a major defect on each one.  Eventually I found her in this small Mom & Pop Hardware store (where I happened to hit toy paydirt and felt really cool being the giddy nerd with a giant armload of toys while everyone around me was buying mulch and powertools haha).  So, yeah, I finally found a decent figure after much effort. The figure is unfortunately a little bland.  The likeness to Summer is off-point and the tasseled thigh-highs really hinder her poseability. In googling for Summer's bio I learned that she was a former football player for the Chicago Bliss team of the Lingerie Football League. This raised so many questions for me. It seemed way too sexist to be true.  Luckily in 2013 they overhauled their image, put on some clothes, and renamed it the Legends Football League.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Lanard's Revamped FAIRY-KINS!

Fairykins (the Magical Pixies) 28 Piece Play Set - CP Toys - Lanard 2012

When I went to my first Toy Fair several years ago I quickly learned that a byproduct of that event is that you get on tons of mailing lists. Most of the catalogs filling my mailbox were way off-topic for my interests (swingsets, stuffed animals, etc), but one catalog had a Fairykins Enchanted Forest playset that really intrigued me.  A little research showed me that this was yet another Lanard property that had been around for many years (perhaps as a knockoff to Sea-Wees?) but had recently modernized a'la yesterday's Pony Tales review. I found that these small dolls were available in a variety of assortments: single packs, vehicle sets, giant playsets, etc. But unfortunately I couldn't find them anywhere at a decent price.  Then recently I discovered this CP Toys-distributed "all-in-one" playset on Amazon and I finally took the plunge. I think it was a very good purchase.  I love the design of these figures, and I'm obsessed with their firefly steeds. Let's check out the Fairykins below!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Lanard's Revamped PONY TALES!

Pony Tales - Once Upon an Adventure - Single Packs - Lanard 2014

I'm not a brony (despite the t-shirt I wear to cons ironically proclaiming otherwise). I actually tried to be one when the craze first hit but it just didn't take. That said, I love the Pony culture in the toy world. They're colorful, quirky, and they are icons of 80's nostalgia. My siblings and I never owned any My Little Ponies. But the presence of MLP was simply unavoidable in the 80s. And with popularity, of course, comes imitation. Lanard is known for making high-quality knockoffs of A-list toys (most notably Hasbro properties).  For years they have been producing Pony Tails, a passable replica of the vintage MLP designs. I was aware of them as I am aware of almost all toys, but I was utterly uninterested.  Then MLP was reinvented with Friendship is Magic, and before long Pony Tails morphed into Pony Tales. The sculpting, accessories, and themes of these figures are amazing. Even if this type of toy is totally not your thing, you can probably appreciate the aesthetics of this line.  Let's check them out below!

Sunday, September 27, 2015


The CORPS: Elite vs. The Curse - Wal-mart Exclusive 3-Pack - Lanard 2015

I always think it's fun to see how much of a variation you can get with a simple repaint of a mold. While most collectors would have been perfectly happy with Puma as the first and only female member of the Corps line, Lanard was gracious enough to offer us two. Snakebite is the good guy of the two ladies.  Their bodies are identical but have different heads and paintjobs. The two look very different in my opinion and I'm really excited to see future variations (if we don't get a brand new female sculpt of course). Snakebite is a member of the Corps (the Heros).  It's kind of amusing because she looks more like a villain than a hero to me.  If it wasn't for the logo emblazoned on her shirt (and the skull on Puma's leg), I would totally be assuming their allegiances were reversed. I feel like this figure is missing some crucial paint apps on her head (Customization at the bottom of the page), but otherwise she is a fantastic figure (and at a bargain price!) Let's check out Snakebite below!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The CORPS Elite - PUMA!

The CORPS: Elite - Triple Threat - Wal-mart Exclusive 3-Pack - Lanard 2015

This figure has been a long time coming.  Fans of G.I.Joe are undoubtedly aware of Lanard's 3.75" compatible knock-off line, "The CORPS."  I've been seeing them in stores for as long as I've been collecting toys. But for a company focused on making off-brand versions of A-list toys, Lanard's detail, paint, and articulation have always been surprisingly good. My only gripe with the Corps is that there have never been any females. I've been paying attention, too. They had a series of 3.75" females called the "WOW Action Girls" many years ago, but their Barbie-esque faces and doll-like accessories were a far cry from the militaristic themes G.I Joe fans wanted. Then several weeks ago I got an email from a reader (thanks Anthony!) asking if I was going to review the new Corps ladies.  I was completely unaware of them - but suddenly super excited to hunt them down.  I had them in my greedy hands within two days. Of course it took me until now to review them.  Sorry about that!  Let's check out Puma below!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Evolve - Funko Legacy Collection - MAGGIE!

Funko Legacy Collection: Evolve - #04 Margaret "Maggie" Lumumba - Funko 2015

Funko's Legacy series has some of the greatest potential of all the collector lines out there. I think this is because the assortment of properties is so random and unknown. When we hear news from Hasbro, the only surprise factor in in the character selection. But Funko seems to dabble in a little bit of everything. With all the billion and a half licences they have, the possibilities for future Legacy figures seems limitless. That potential of course depends on the success of the various random Legacy lines as they are released. I'm really hoping to see Dark Crystal and Fifth Element at the very least. This figure of Maggie looks pretty creepy. Something about her makeup and hair makes her look ruthless and crazy. I kind of love it.  Maggie is a hunter character alongside her pet trapjaw (i.e. a big alien beast) named Daisy. The figure itself is great. Her paint and articulation are practically perfect. I hope this series is successful! I'm a big fan of the two figures I've purchased. Let's check out Maggie below.