Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Walking Dead - ALPHA!

The Walking Dead - Comic Series - Skybound Exc - McFarlane Toys 2015

I still haven't read any of The Walking Dead comics, but this figure is really making me want to start. All information I'm gleaning about this figure is pure conjecture from the packaging graphics.. but it's some pretty awesome conjecture. I gather that Alpha is the leader of a band of survivors that wear skinned walker heads as masks to "cloak" themselves. It's a pretty gross and cool concept. I really hope Alpha and her tribe make it into the show. I'm guessing she's on the "good" side since The Walking dead always likes to play with the "appearances can be deceiving" concepts, and she looks pretty gruesome... so she must be friendly, right? Time will tell. has released a lot of great exclusives over the past few years. (Skybound is Robert Kirkman's Entertainment company FYI). It seems to be a great way to get us characters that aren't a good fit for the stores. Hopefully there are many more.  Let's check out Alpha below!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Marvel X-men Legends Infinite Series - JUBILEE!

Marvel X-Men Legends - Build-a-Figure Jubilee - TRU Exclusive - Hasbro 2015

Jubilee has never been a favorite character of mine.  When she first appeared I thought she was a cheap knock-off of Boom Boom, but then I quickly realized she was intended to be another Kitty Pryde-type character in the X-men roster. I thought she was silly and pretty much just ignored her until she became the focal point of X-men the Animated Series back in 1992. She was pretty hard to sweep under the rug at that point. But everyone seemed to love her so I tried to give her a shot. It took decades for me to warm up to her. Literally. It was while reading 2011's Wolverine and Jubilee mini-series that I finally saw what everyone else did. Of course at this point she was a vampire on the run with a kidnapped baby (which was a bizarre turn of events), but for the first time I enjoyed her. Of course I found that a quick way for that hard-earned respect to be rendered obsolete is to make her Legends figure a nearly-impossible-to-complete exclusive build-a-figure and then package her torso with the criminally shortpacked Storm.  It was a frustrating, yet bountiful, year for Marvel Legends. Let's check out Jubilee below!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Marvel X-men Legends Infinite Series - STORM!

Marvel X-Men Legends - Jubilee Series - Storm - TRU Exclusive - Hasbro 2015

This figure was the bane of my existence all year. It's one thing the have a shortpacked A-list female character, it's another thing to include a major (female) Build-a-Figure piece with such a figure, and it's yet another thing to make the entire wave exclusive to a single store. To me, this figure represented the cruelty that companies like Hasbro can inflict on the collecting community. I go to Toys R Us a lot. I pass four different locations in my regular travels, and I have an additional six in close proximity that I can easily hit on the weekends. But I never saw this figure once in the stores. I promised myself that I would get her by the end of the year, and here she is, but she cost me a small fortune. This figure is stunning though.  I completely understand why everyone wanted her. Plus the Jubilee legs and torso are a major bonus. I hope she gets re-released in some form so everyone can own her. This next year should be a pretty good one for X-men Legends. Let's check out Storm below!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Halo 5 Guardians - SPARTAN KELLY!

Halo 5 Guardians - Series 01 - Spartan Kelly - McFarlane Toys 2015

Halo toys just keep getting better and better. Each time I buy a new figure, I swear it will be my last, but then another character gets released and I'm back on the bandwagon. Halo 5: Guardians has a lot of great potential for female figures. There are already two females (Holly Tanaka and Kelly-087) for this game, with a third generic green figure on the way soon. But there are at least two more named females in the game (Olympia Vale and Linda-058). There is already an older figure Vale figure out there, but an updated one would be awesome.  I really just want female Halo figures in every color of the spectrum. I almost skipped this Kelly figure because I thought her coloring was too similar to Commander Palmer's for my multi-hued army. The earlier version of Kelly had white armor and would have been better, but she's really hard to come by at a good price. So alas, another silver Spartan on my shelf.  At least the gold-domed helmet distinguishes her.  Let's check out Kelly below!

Saturday, December 26, 2015


Power Rangers Dino Charge - Dino Steel & Dino Drive - Bandai 2015

I'm combining my reviews of these two figures because I've had them on the back burners forever. For those unaware, Power Rangers typically get several costume upgrades throughout the course of a series.  So far in Dino Charge, there was the Standard costumes, the armored Dino Drive costumes, and the differently-armored Dino Steel costumes. This review will cover the latter two costumes of the Pink Ranger so I can be all caught up. I don't usually get all the variations of the figures (because the changes can be subtle and not interesting for display purposes), but the Dino Charge series is a little different because there are at least ten rangers, and I'm hoping for a variety of female action figures in new colors (Aqua/Cyan especially!). We already got a surprise Purple so my hopes are high. I'd hate to miss out on a full set so I'm picking up the Pinks when I see them. Let's check out Dino Drive Pink and Dino Steel Pink in detail below!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Power Rangers Dino Supercharge PURPLE RANGER!

Power Rangers Dino Supercharge - Purple Ranger - Bandai 2015

It's not every day that a Purple Ranger comes around.. especially a female one. As far as I can tell, this is a first. One thing that really impressed me when I first reviewed Dino Pink earlier this year was the sheer number of Rangers in this lineup. Included in the bunch were three females: Pink, Purple, and Cyan (or Aqua?). I honestly didn't expect to get any of the second-tier Rangers in action figure form. But then a few months ago some pictures were shown of the first waves of Dino Supercharge were shown with two new females: Purple.. and possibly Blue? Purple started showing up in stores around me this week. On the shelves, she looks really purple, but in photos I realize she looks very fuchsia. I have some added pics near the bottom that make her color look more distinct. Purple Ranger is themed as a Plesiosaur, which doesn't exactly seem like the most threatening of beasts. She's probably like Aquaman in the Justice League.  I love her though. I hope we get a whole spectrum of ladies!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Mortal Kombat - KITANA!

Mortal Kombat X - Princess Kitana - Mezco Toyz 2015

Fighting games don't have a good track record for sensible female costumes. Fetish lingerie with boots seems to be the status quo. (How this ever became the standard getup for a formidable female warrior boggles the mind). Mortal Kombat X is the sixteenth game featuring Kitana.  I haven't played video games in years, but I was definitely a gamer 22 years ago when Kitana made her first appearance. To be honest, the girls in the early years of Mortal Kombat kind of annoyed me. This is mostly because they were just multi-hued versions of the same character. Jade, Mileena, and Kitana reminded me of the Chipmunks with their minimal color-coded differences. I wanted variety dammit! Over the years their looks have evolved independently into the impractical mass of straps we see today. Don't get me wrong, this action figure is really well made and looks great.  And I don't regret picking her up for a second. I just think no fighter would be caught dead trying to spar in this outfit. Let's check her out below!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Masters of the Universe - TEELA (and Customization!)

MOTUC Point Dread & Talon Fighter - Mattycollector Exclusive - Mattel 2015

Teela is probably the greatest female character in the original He-Man and the Masters of the Universe series. The Sorceress and Evil-Lyn were awesome, but at the same time they were pretty archetypal witch/mage types. Teela, on the other hand, was the daughter of King Randor's weaponer, Man-at-Arms, and Captain of the Royal Guard. Most of the time she was tasked with protecting the seemingly aloof Prince Adam - much to the amusement of the viewing audience. The first Teela figure in the MOTUC line was amazing. Her only issues are that she looks pretty modern in comparison to more recent figures that favorite the simplified Filmation style. She's also very expensive to acquire on the secondary market. So this Teela 2.0 figure was a much-demanded figure that had everyone's hopes high. Then the production figures were shown with a misshapen face and the disappointed grumbles could be heard across the blogosphere. I can be pretty handy with minor touch-ups to figures so I was excited to try my hand at fixing this figure. I'm super happy with the results. Pics and details at the bottom. Let's check out Teela 2.0!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Star Wars Elite Series - REY!

Star Wars Elite Series - Die-Cast 6" Rey - Disney Store Exclusive 2015

As I type this, there are thousands of geeks sitting in the theatre getting their first glimpse at The Force Awakens. I'm not going to get a chance to see it until next week at the earliest, but I'm still super excited. I watched a bunch of cast interviews this afternoon on YouTube and they made me really curious about the character Rey. Based on some of J.J. Abrams' and Carrie Fisher's comments, it sounds as if Rey is the focal point of the film. Of course, most people know the truth of that by this point, but I'm still in the joyous speculation phase. This Elite Series figure eluded me for many months after I missed her on Force Friday. I felt like a crazy person calling my Disney Store every Monday after they got their shipments in. That never panned out, but one day I randomly stopped in a different location and she was the lone figure sitting on the shelf.  Things always seem to work out one way or another. Let's check out the Elite Series Rey in detail below!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Star Wars 6" Black Series - CAPTAIN PHASMA!

Star Wars: The Force Awakens - Black Series 06 - Captain Phasma - Hasbro 2015

Of all the things to look forward to in The Force Awakens, I think I'm most anticipating the character of Captain Phasma.  I'm especially curious to see if she's even portrayed as a female. Everyone knows it's Gwendolyn Christie under the helmet, and it's a safe assumption that her voice will be altered in a genderless vader-ish kind of way.  I guess my curiosity is whether or not she will remove her helmet at any point in the film and reveal her gender. Although, I would kind of enjoy it if it were not made explicitly clear that she's female.  I guess we'll all know soon enough. I was really really impressed by this figure. I didn't think it would be able to top the Disney Store Elite Series Captain Phasma, but it totally does.  The articulation and proportions are superior in my opinion.  Plus there is likely to be many more 6" scale figures in the future rather than the 7" of the Disney figures.  Let's check out Captain Phasma in detail below!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Star Wars 6" Black Series - BOUSHH DISGUISE LEIA!

Star Wars - Black Series - #16 Princess Leia Organa (Boushh) - Hasbro 2015

While the Star Wars films aren't known for having a wide array of female characters, the characters they do have tend to run the gamut of roles.  We saw Princess Leia as a snarky rebel leader, a skilled fighter, a metal-clad slave, and my favorite, a knight in shining armor. In a nice turn of events during Return of the Jedi, Leia dons the outfit of recently killed bounty hunter Boushh to rescue Han Solo from Jabba the Hut. I'm glad this was the choice for the second Black figure Leia. (Next I want Hoth or Endor!)  I had a real tough time finding this figure when she was supposedly hitting the shelves this past summer, but luckily she (and her whole wave) seem to be heavily stocked in Walgreens right now. Hopefully everyone seeking her out can find her as easily as I did.  I'm trying to post all my backlogged Star Wars posts this week before The Force Awakens comes out. It's probably going to be weeks before I get to see it in the theatres, but I'm already excited.Let's check out Leia in her Boushh disguise below!

Monday, December 14, 2015

World of Nintendo - DIXIE KONG!

World of Nintendo (2.5") - Series 1-5 - Jakks Pacific 2015

The Donkey Kong Country game series came out in 1994 and totally revitalized the Donkey Kong Franchise.  The original Donkey Kong was meant to be the flagship Nintendo character, but was quickly overshadowed by his nemesis Jumpman (aka Mario).  Donkey Kong was one of those weird games (like Zelda) where the titular character was a non-playable focal point of the game.  The Donkey Kong Country series changed all that.  Suddenly there were multiple ape and monkey characters to play.  And finally they were protagonists (against crocodiles or the Tikis).  Donkey Kong Country 2 introduced the first playable female character, Dixie Kong.  Like most female characters in games and comics, her skills made her one of the best characters to play (she whipped her ponytail around like a helicopter to knock out enemies).  Add her to the ranks of Princess Peach, Storm, Marge Simpson, Orchid, and Chun-Li as the most kickass characters to play in their respective games.  Let's check out Dixie below!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

World of Nintendo - PRINCESS PEACH (2.5")!

World of Nintendo (2.5") - Series 1-6 - Jakks Pacific 2015

Princess Peach started out as a stereotypical damsel in distress. Her pixelated early incarnation (as Princess Toadstool) was the objective of the original NES Super Mario Brothers game. As you defeat King Koopa in the final castle, an unanimated blob of a princess congratulates you and tells you to play the whole game again (the most anticlimactic ending ever!) From those inauspicious beginnings, she has overcome the odds and become a formidable playable character, and even the star of her own game (Super Princess Peach 2006). I love when characters evolve with the times. This 2.5" figure was a surprise to me when I found her in Target this week. I had just picked up the 4" version at TRU the week before and had no idea this smaller one was on the horizon. Jakks Pacific doesn't seem to have the same pre-release fanfare that Mattel and Hasbro drum up, so I'm often unaware of the products before I'm holding them in my hands (which I secretly find thrilling). Let's check out Peach below!

Saturday, December 12, 2015

World of Nintendo - PRINCESS PEACH (4")!

World of Nintendo (4") - Series 1-3 - Jakks Pacific 2015

The World of Nintendo series from Jakks Pacific is really picking up speed. I feel like every time I go into Target, Walmart, Toys R' Us, or Walgreens, I see a new figure I didn't know existed. In fact, in researching this Princess Peach (ie.. trying to determine her series number and release date), I discovered three more figures I will now be hunting for.  Princess Peach is the most recognizable of the Nintendo ladies, so she understandably gets the frontrunner status in this line. She already has two versions (next one being reviewed tomorrow), so hopefully that is a good indicator that we will see Daisy, Rosalina, Zelda, Toadette, and others on the shelves before too long. Although what I'm really hoping for is an 8-bit Princess Toadstool to go with my 8-bit Mario, Luigi, Link, and Donkey Kong (Also, my better half gave me permission to display the 8-bits around the house..not just in the toy room.. that's a total first!)  This is such a cool line. Let's check out Princess Peach below!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Batman: Arkham Knight - CATWOMAN!

Batman: Arkham Knight - #7 - Catwoman - DC Collectibles 2015

The Arkham series of video games has given us quite a few great action figures over the years. Surprisingly though, this is only the second DCC Catwoman to come out (Harley has six if you include the repaints). I feel like the Harleys have been getting better and better, but while this Catwoman is a distinct improvement over the Arkham City figure, it still pales in comparison to recent Comic versions. The digital design from the game gives Selina a long lanky body which looks great during gameplay but looks awkwardly stretched out in toy form. This is not a bad toy by any means, I just had high hopes after the recent Arkham Knight Harley and Arkham Origins Dr. Quinzel exceeded my expectations. Another pitfall of this specific figure is inconsistent and sloppy eye paint. Some of the figures I saw had pink eyes (where the white should be) and others, like mine, had heavy lower eyeliner, but very light eyeliner on top. It was an easy fix for me, but a disappointment overall.  Let's check out Catwoman below!

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Batman Dorbz Series 1 - POISON IVY!

Batman Dorbz - Series 01 #32 - Poison Ivy - Vinyl Sugar / Funko 2015

Poison Ivy is the Batman character that has grown on me the most over the years. When I first started reading Batman comics in the 1980s, I found her kind of annoying and boring. In retrospect though, I think her character was just not well fleshed-out yet. In fact, I did some investigating and I count only 17 comic appearances that entire decade (in the 1990s she had about 80, and it's been escalating ever since). I credit a huge part of her character development to her roles in Batman: The Animated Series and The New Batman Adventures (and even more mainstream recognition through Uma Thurman's portrayal of her in Batman & Robin). Now she's an A-List villain with a role in every video game, cartoon, and toy line. I love how we all now know her as a complex, disturbed, ruthless character, but we still empathize with her flora-vs-fauna fanaticism. She's quickly become one of my favorites. Plus I'm really excited for her solo mini-seires this January. Let's check out the Poison Ivy Dorbz below!

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Batman Dorbz Series 1 - CATWOMAN!

Batman Dorbz - Series 01 #31 - Catwoman - Vinyl Sugar / Funko 2015

I'm totally smitten over the Funko/Vinyl Sugar Dorbz line.  I was a little iffy when I fist saw them at Toy Fair earlier this year.  Sure, they were cute, but I didn't know the price point and wasn't sure if I wanted to take the plunge into a new collectible line.  But once I saw the first wave hit the stores this Summer, I knew I would be in trouble.  The one saving grace for my wallet and my shelfspace is that I don't know how diverse the line will be.  My main four favorite DC characters are already out and I seriously doubt the second-tier players like Huntress and Batwoman are on the agenda.  Still, I'm very happy with the selection so far and I'm excited to see what the future holds for this line.  I think at the very least we'll see a few more Catwoman variants: Batman '66, Classic purple, etc.  I'm glad they started with the modern comic version though, she tends to get left out a lot.  The same treatment could also be applied to Harley and Batgirl.  Only time will tell.  Let's check out the new Dorbz Catwoman below!

Thursday, December 3, 2015

WWE Elite Collection - STEPHANIE McMAHON!

WWE Elite Collection: Series 37 - Stephanie McMahon - Mattel 2015

Stephanie McMahon has had a very dynamic career in the WWE (and WWF).  She is the daughter of Vince McMahon, the Chairman and CEO of WWE (which probably means nepotism played a big role in her career).  She began behind the scenes as an Account Executive but eventually became a stage performer. This exploited her lineage and had her be the focus of kidnappings, love triangles, and feuds. In 2007 she became the Executive Vice President of Creative and in 2013 she became the Chief Brand Officer - a role that she still holds today.  I think it's awesome when I'm watching a movie then I IMDB the cast only to find that the star is also the writer.  I get that same feeling from Steph; She's a popular presence in the ring, and an integral part of the show behind the scenes. This toy is pretty great, too. Her outfit is very unique compared to my other Mattel WWE ladies and the face and hair look really good (there have been a few busted faces lately).  Let's check out Stephanie McMahon below!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015


Imaginext Blind Bag Series 6 - Pilot (Amelia Earhart) - Fisher-Price/Mattel 2015

These Imaginext figures just keep rolling out. The Series 6 blind bags appeared in stores without any preamble last month and sent collectors into a tizzy. Unfortunately for several weeks the only place they were showing up was Fred Meyer stores in Washington and Alaska. Luckily they've seemed to appear everywhere now. I finally found mine in Target last week. The character selection in this line thrills me. Just a few short years ago I was very frustrated with the selection of Imaginext females, but now I'm confident that we will see many more awesome ladies in the coming years. I would like to see a Statue of Liberty, a Cleopatra, a Rosie the Riveter, and a Dragon Lady - of course the blind bags figures never have names, so we're left with simple descriptors to identify them. I'm pretty sure we'll actually see them all eventually though. This pilot figure was an unexpected but welcome addition to the already diverse lineup. I'm really excited for what the future will bring. Let's check out Amelia Earhart below!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Masters of the Universe Classics - VEENA!

MOTUC Club Eternia - Queen Grayskull - Mattycollector Exclusive - Mattel 2015

He-Man's 2002 reboot was definitely not my favorite iteration of the Masters of the Universe property.  I tried to get into it, but it just never took root.  One of the biggest disappointments for me was the redesign of my favorite character, the Sorceress.  Instead of the original orange and blue feathered falcon garb, she now wore a gold and teal Egyptian-themed outfit that I always felt looked out of place (I thought it was very Stargate-ish to have a Egyptian-like culture on another planet). Years later I learned that the "Ra" in She-Ra was actually in reference to the Egyptian God of the Sun, but that didn't make me like the 2002 Sorceress any better. This figure is of Veena - or Queen Grayskull - who is a Preternian predecessor of the modern Sorceress.  She helped create the Power Swords and guarded Castle Grayskull after King Grayskull's death.  Her design is a nice median between the classic Sorceress and her 2002 redesign.  It's not overtly Egyptian, but definitely holds to the 2002 style.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Batman: The Animated Series - HARLEY QUINN!

Batman: The Animated Series -  12 - Harley Quinn - DC Collectibles 2015

This Batman Animated Universe line is like crack. The character selection has been amazing and the production quality, for the most part, has been spectacular. I can't wait to get my main four characters: Batgirl, Catwoman, Harley Quinn, and Poison Ivy in both BTAS and TNBA form. I never expected to see this old style, regardless of how classic it's become, make a resurgence in the high-end collectible market. I thought we would be relegated to the old 5-POA Kenner and Mattel mass market figures from the 90s. Don't get me wrong, those are classically awesome figures, but these new ones just blow them so far out of the water they aren't even in the same league. This Harley figure is the first in the line I've ever had QC problems with; The paint masking around her white neckpiece was sloppy on every figure I saw, and so was the linework around her mask.  Then her ankles are also misshapen from the plastic ties. It's unfortunate, but not a deal-breaker. Let's check out Harley below!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

GameStop Exclusive Funko BATGIRL POP!

DC Super Heroes - POP! heroes #3 - Batgirl - Funko 2015

You can probably guess what I was doing on Black Friday. For the first time ever, there were Black Friday exclusive Funko POPs at GameStop and Hot Topic. As far as the ladies go, there was a Black-suited Batgirl using the 2010 mold (along with a 1:8 Gold Chase variant) at GameStop and a Black & White Harley (w/Mallet) at Hot Topic.  The Hot Topics around me were sold out before Friday so I didn't have a chance. But luckily I was able to snag a bunch of GameStop Mystery Boxes and got two Batgirls. It's been many years since this Batgirl has been released so getting a repaint was a welcome addition to my collection. Unfortunately her quality control is pretty low in my opinion. She's the worst of my four Batgirl POPs by far (and I don't even like the old metallic variant). Both my Batgirls had pretty unfortunate paint issues.  I think her production was rushed and some quick decisions were made, leading to a sloppy product. I guess I expect higher standards for exclusives. Let's check her out below!

Friday, November 27, 2015

Marvel Mini-Bust - TIGRA!

Marvel Mini-Busts - Tigra (Greer Grant Nelson) - Bowen Designs 2006

Tigra is one of the characters most deserving of a modern Marvel Legends treatment in my opinion. All she needs is a cameo in one of the Marvel TV shows and I'll bet we get her within the year. Greer Grant started her career as The Cat in 1972.  Back then she wore the yellow and blue costume later adopted by Patsy Walker as Hellcat.  After a few years in that original costume, Greer was mortally wounded while protecting the Cat People from Hydra. They saved her life by transforming her into Tigra, the mantle of their legendary protector. She has gone on to be an consistent, but underutilized hero in the Marvel Universe. She has been a member of the Avengers and teamed up with the X-Men, Fantastic Four, Spider-man, etc.  She's received a decent amount of merchandise over the years, but in my opinion this mini-bust is the best.  Her Marvel legends figure from several years ago was passable, but I think a new one with the new female bucks would be amazing.  Let's check out the Hellcat bust below!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Total Heroes - WONDER WOMAN!

DC Comics - Total Heroes - Wonder Woman - Mattel 2015

Just like the late-stage release of the Brave and the Bold Wonder Woman in 2013 (rebranded as Justice League All-Stars) ushered in the end of that line, this Wonder Woman figure seems to be the swan song of the Total Heroes line.  She was shown at Toy Fair back in 2014, but then was seemingly forgotten.  I think she's unlikely to ever show up in stores, but luckily Amazon now stocks her at a fluctuating, but usually reasonable price (right now she's $11.99.. sometimes she jumps up to $39.99 though). This toy is really great and it's a shame that once again we are unlikely to see any other females in this line.  A Batgirl and Catwoman would have fit in so nicely.  But alas, this is the plight of the female super hero. It will be interesting to see how much female merchandise we see for the Dawn of Justice and Wonder Woman movies.  I may have to set limitations on myself to avoid a star-spangled explosion in my toy cave.  Let's check out this long-awaited Total Heroes Wonder Woman below!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Funko POP! Arkham Knight HARLEY QUINN!

POP! Heroes #72 - Batman: Arkham Knight - Harley Quinn - Funko 2015

Funko loves Harley Quinn.  In a few short years they've put out more Harley merchandise than DCC and Mattel combined. I count 8 POPs, 1 mini-pop, 5 Mystery Minis (including the just-announced Arkham one), 1 Mopeez, 1 Fabrications, 1 Vinyl3, 1 Dorbz, and 1 Vinyl Vixen.  That's 19 Harleys (including variants) in two short years.  Plus you know there's going to be product for the Suicide Squad movie as well.  This Arkham Knight design for Harley Quinn has really grown on me.  The first time I saw a graphic of it a few years ago it made me groan with its impracticality.  But now I'm really warming up to it.  The one thing I've come to accept from the video game character designs is that they don't last too long before a new game and new outfit emerges.  I just hope one of these future games uses the Arkham-centric design from Assault on Arkham DVD.  That look was amazing and was way too cool to only be used in two brief animated scenes. Let's check out this Arkham Knight Harley below!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Miles From Tomorrowland - LORETTA & PHOEBE!

Miles From Tomorrowland - Loretta & Phoebe Callisto - Tomy 2015

Kid toys have been getting steadily better and better over the years.  Mattel's Fisher-Price and Hasbro's Playskool have really taken a cue from their parent companies and developed these fantastic lines of little action figures -- that I would have been absolutely obsessed with as a child. (And now as a discerning adult, I'm only slightly less infatuated).  This Miles from Tomorrowland series is one of the first times we've seen Tomy enter the preschool action figure market (although the John Deere Gear Force figures were probably the very first). Miles is a CGI-animated show on Disney Junior based on the Tomorrowland attraction at Walt Disney World.  I can only assume this was meant to tie into the high-budget live-action film from last Summer. The show focuses on the Callisto family who live on a spaceship and work for the TTA (Tomorrowland Transit Authority).  Reminds me of the the Fantastic Four vs Parking Wars. I haven't seen it yet, but it sounds really fun.  Let's check out the toys!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

WWE Superstar - NIKKI BELLA!

WWE Basic Series #52 - Superstar #46 - Nikki Bella - Mattel 2015

I've been randomly yet compulsively collecting WWE ladies for about 5 years now.  My first figure was Kelly Kelly from Series #6 which I believe was on the shelves in Fall of 2010.  Since then I've excitedly bought every figure I've ever seen in the store. The only purchase I have ever had doubts about was the first Bella Twins 2-Pack from 2012. The figures of Nikki and Brie Bella in that set looked very odd.  Their outfits were bulky, their expressions were awkward, and overall the set was just very lackluster.  But luckily Mattel is offering resculpted versions of the Bella Twins which more than make up for the forgettable first attempt.  Brie Bella was released earlier this year and blew her previous version out of the water.  This Nikki figure has the same effect.  Her new headsculpt, her cool hat accessory, and her lack of any add-on bulk clothing makes this a fantastic apology figure.  Now if all the other toy lines would get in line with this kind of fan demand!  Let's check out Nikki Bella (Version 2!) in detail below!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Funko POP! Marvel - LADY THOR!

Marvel Collector Corps Exclusive - Marvel #97 - Thor (Secret Wars) - Funko 2015

All the Funko Exclusives are getting to be confusing. I wish there was one consolidated source to let us know what POPs were coming out (including exclusives and Pop Asia). But I think the trend of the mystery subscription box has put an end to that dream. There are now subscription clubs for Marvel, DC, Star Wars, LootCrate, and probably a ton more I'm not aware of. I first found this Lady Thor POP when it randomly showed up in one of my eBay searches. I had a mini nerd-fit where I was completely indignant about Funko's sneakiness. But then a friend who had two subs offered to sell me one cheap. Marvel has been going through quite a gender-balancing spree with their solo titles. In the past few years we've seen popular solo titles from Spider-Woman, Captain Marvel, Silk, Spider-Gwen, Angela, Storm and of course Thor. Her title had an interesting approach because the readers did not know her identity until issue #8. I find her to be a great character with an awesome design. Let's check her out below!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Avengers Miniature Figurine - CAPTAIN MARVEL!

Marvel Avengers Figurine Set - Disney Store Exclusive - 2015

For years I've been noticing these Marvel Figurine Sets at the Disney Store.  Spider-Woman, Ms. Marvel, Jean Grey, Rogue, Storm, and Black Widow have all made appearances in these sets over the years, but the high price ($20-25 range) and the good-but-not-great sculpts kept me from actually buying any. Then on Force Friday when I was standing in line in the Disney Store I took notice of this Captain Marvel figurine included in the new Avengers set.  For once the sculpt was terrific, the paint was on-point, and the price was totally justified.  Another thing that kept me from buying the other sets is that the female characters always had goofy bases; Spider-Woman was clinging to a brick wall, Ms. Marvel was floating on a cloud, etc. I'm not a fan of that aesthetic personally.  The simple black flight stand that Captain Marvel is on, however, is perfectly acceptable to me. This looks like a miniaturized Bowen statue and I think it's simply gorgeous.  Let's check out Captain Marvel below!

Monday, November 2, 2015

The Walking Dead's MICHONNE (Comic Style v2)!

The Walking Dead - Comic Series - Skybound Exc - McFarlane Toys 2015

I still haven't read any of the Walking Dead comics, but the show is absolutely one of my favorites.  Michonne seems to be a fan-favorite on both the AMC show and the Image comics.  This is the third unique action figure we've seen of this character (not including variants and figures re-released with new accessories). I don't really know much about the rest of the toy line, but I think Rick might be the only other character with that many toys. This new comic version is a great improvement over an already fantastic figure.  She looks much more like the comic art now, but in a realistic 3-dimensional way that lets her fit in nicely with the AMC versions. She's available at Skybound in a full color version as well as gray-scale with blood spatter. I feel like this figure wasn't heavily advertised. I stumbled across her when I accidentally clicked the Skybound bookmark I had made last winter when I was hunting Clementine.  I'm glad I did though because this figure is gorgeous.  Let's check her out below!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Funko POP Television - LILY MUNSTER!

POP! Television #197 - The Munsters - Lily Munster - Funko 2015

Happy Halloween everyone! I didn't have the foresight this year to do a whole month of Halloween reviews, but I was saving this awesome Lily Munster Pop for the occasion.  The Munsters had the ability to bring Halloween to any time of the year and it was glorious.  The family of suburban monsters were charming, funny, and delightfully idiosyncratic in a a Donna Reed world. Interesting fact I just learned: The Munsters was cancelled because it couldn't complete with Batman.  Can you imagine the TV lineups back then?  Add Star Trek, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Girl from U.N.C.L.E., and the Green Hornet and you'll start to realize how wonderfully geeky TV was in the sixties.  I wonder if they'll be discussing our TV lineup in 50 years?  I somehow doubt that very much.  I was very excited to add Lily to my fledgling Funko witch collection.  Currently it's heavy in Disney villains and just starting to accrue other members from pop culture. (I need Morticia. Elvira, and Vampira stat!)  Let's out Lily below!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

I Am Elemental - Core Power COURAGE!

I Am Elemental: The Core Power Series - Courage - Rebel Elements 2015

The next couple years are going to be groundbreaking as far as female-empowered action figures are concerned. We've all heard about Mattel's DC Superhero Girls at this point. They are making the claim that it will be the first ever action figure line aimed at girls, but let's not forget this great little line from last year that lit up Kickstarter like nothing I've seen before.  The first I Am Elemental series was a line of 7 "Elements of Power" heroines in 3.75" form.  This 6.5" Courage figure is essentially their Megazord/Voltron/Combiner form.  It is a very awesome toy that is worth every penny. (I ordered mine here). The next series is "Wisdom" and I'm eagerly looking forward to it.  Like I started mentioning above, this year is going to have a lot of girl power. Ladybug and Cat Noir are getting a toy line from Bandai, and Mysticons are being handled by Playmates.  Add that to the DC Superhero Girls, and I Am Elemental and it's going to be a stereotype-shattering season in the pink aisles.  And I can't wait!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Masters of the Universe Classics - PERFUMA!

MOTUC Club Eternia - Perfuma - Mattycollector Exclusive - Mattel 2015

Well, it is complete. Perfuma is the final She-Ra figure to be recreated from the vintage toy line (excluding a few variants).  She was the character I was least excited about of all the Great Rebellion and Horde ladies. In the cartoon I thought she was silly with her goofy personality, little ballet slippers, and entrancing flower smells. Like a lot of characters, Perfuma had very few appearances (only two), and I was perfectly okay with that.  But again, like almost every character I've looked down upon from those early years, once I got my hand on this toy, my tune completely changed. She suddenly seems much older (in a good way), more formidable, and surprisingly her flower powers seemed interesting. I'm always amazed at how the Four Horsemen can change my opinion so thoroughly. It's kind of sad to be done with the main She-Ra characters, but it's nice to wrap it up with such a surprisingly nice figure. Hopefully the C-list characters will be released someday, but in the meantime, let's check out Perfuma!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Funko POP Fifth Element - DIVA PLAVALAGUNA!

POP! Movies #195 - The Fifth Element - Diva Plavalaguna - Funko 2015

Diva Plavalaguna is one of the most iconic sci-fi ladies of the 1990s in my humble opinion. I still remember the sense of awe when I first saw her on the big screen - this larger than life blue goddess belting out a creepy alien opera. I instantly wanted a toy of her. Unfortunately it would be almost 4 years until we were teased with those N2 Toys Fifth Element prototypes at SDCC (that never saw the light of day), and a full 18 years before Funko finally started releasing products. I couldn't be happier to finally have her represented in my collection. Did I mention before that my friend and I overheard a Funko rep saying that there would be a Fifth Element Legacy line? She may have been misspeaking or making an "anything is possible" statement, but the thought of those potential figures thrills me. Fingers crossed! This Diva Pop is very interesting because of her size. Proportionally, she is the smallest Pop in my collection (ie,. her head is small). There's a comparison pic at the end. Let's check out Diva!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Arkham Origins - LADY SHIVA!

Batman: Arkham Origins - 3-Pack - Lady Shiva - DC Collectibles 2015

Lady Shiva is one of those characters that has always been in my periphery but that I never truly got to understand or enjoy.  I gather she was a major character in the Cassandra Cain Batgirl series, but I had some issues with the art style on that title and only started reading when Pop Man took over near the end.  Lady Shiva is Cass' mother, she's in the League of Assassins, and in general she's just usually up to no good.  She kind of has the same presence as Talia al ghul.  I consider her one of the un-costumed bat characters that I don't really pay much attention to.  If this figure didn't come in the box set with Harleen Quinzel, I probably would have skipped her.  But since I bought her anyway, I'm not letting her go. (Don't try to figure me out).  This is a really nice looking action figure.  She looks way better in plastic than she does in the game.  You kind of can't go wrong with a Jonathan Matthews sculpt though.  Everything the man touches is gold.  Let's check out Lady Shiva below!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Aion Online - AIVA!

Aion Online - Limited Collector's Edition Box Figurine - NCsoft 2009

Aion Online is a massive multiplayer online role-playing game released in 2008.  I don't play games myself, but I was taken by the character design and this figure proved too tempting to resist.  The game takes place in the world of Atreia which is structured as two concave hemispheres connected by a tower.  The outside of the planet is lifeless, but the hollow halves contain warring classes and creatures (many of which seem angel-like).  (I'm a mythology nerd and I know the Greek deity Aion represents an orb that encompasses the Universe... very cool play on theme here).  This unarticulated figure was an exclusive that came with the 2009 Limited Collector's Edition Box of the game. Aiva is a female winged Asmodian Daeva.  I don't know what that means but it sounds cool.  She is heavily detailed and could pass for a McFarlane figure easily. There is a seller on ebay selling her in mass quantities very cheap.  I'm assuming the seller has some kind of connection to NCsoft.  Go buy her!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The New Batman Adventures - BATGIRL!

The New Batman Adventures - 16 - Batgirl - DC Collectibles 2015

This Batman Animated line is rocking my world.  Although I never got into any of the shows when they were first aired, I have since grown to really appreciate them (as well as the character designs).  It's a very difficult feat to collect all the animated Batgirl figures.  Trust me, I've tried.  So many years ago I gave up and set out to find the single best one.  Needless to say this new figure knocks all my previous purchases out of the water.  It's actually hard to review these figures because I don't have anything critical to say about them at all.  Something I really love about this series is that they are alternating the styles of Batman:The Animated Series and The New Batman Adventures. Eventually I'm sure we'll have one of each style for all the characters.  Batman and Robin each have two different figures in the line, and apparently a TNBA Harley was secretly shown at SDCC (to compliment the BTAS version Harley due later this year). I'm very excited for this line.  Let's check out Batgirl in detail below!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Funko POP! Gotham - SELINA KYLE!

POP! Heroes #79 - Gotham: Before the Legend - Selina Kyle - Funko 2015

Funko is a very very addictive company.  Five short years ago I found myself in a comic shop in Austin holding a Batgirl POP.  I spent way too long deliberating on the purchase (they were only $7.99 back then) but I eventually walked out with my new treasure.  I told myself I would just collect other bat-family females.  I was assuming there would be tons.  Of course it took three years to see the next character (Harley Quinn). Though, somehow in that time I managed to amass a whopping 40 POP figures (only 15 of which stuck with the bat-theme). Funko is now my favorite booth at Toy Fair each year. They always manage to have some products that make me giddy with excitement. This year one of my favorites was this Selina Kyle POP from Gotham. Of all the characters in the show, Selina seems to be the most costumed one.  I really don't have much interest in plain-clothed toys, but Selina totally fit the bill on so many levels that I couldn't resist.  Let's check her out below!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Gotham Select - SELINA KYLE!

Gotham Select - Series 01 - Selina Kyle - Diamond Select Toys 2015

Gotham is one of the most surprising shows in my TV roster. It's surprising because I fully expected to hate the show when it was being advertised all over San Diego last Summer. When you combine a Batman purist like myself with a network TV interpretation, it sounds like a recipe for disaster. But the show is great. It's creepy, funny, stylish, and I fully embrace it. Smallville, Arrow, and Flash were all disappointing to me. Sure, I like that they exist, but there is a style to them that I just can't get on board with. Gotham is very different though. Maybe it's because the actors aren't all underwear models. Maybe it's because it's not gleaning dramatic inspiration from soap operas. But I think it's largely because, despite the plethora of Batman mythos, this origin era has rarely been expanded upon. Even the most casual Batman fan could get sucked in. Camren Bicondova as a young Selina Kyle is one of my favorite parts of the show so it's super exciting to get an action figure so soon. Let's check her out below!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Photos from NYCC 2015!

A Small Collection of My Favorite Action Figure Reveals at NY ComicCon 2015

New York Comic Con seems to have less and less toy presence every year.  Hasbro and Mattel were always staples on the showroom floor and all the smaller toy companies would really step up to compete.  But in the last few years things have changed.  Hasbro has only been holding pre-show press events outside the con (and hosting a few panels) and Mattel has been either a no-show, or had a small presence in the lobby. When I saw that Funko had a huge block reserved on the floor map this year, I was excited that this would maybe usher in a new resurgence of impressive toy displays.  But alas, their area was essentially a giant waiting queue to buy their exclusives, with no other products on display. Someday I think NYCC will regain its position as a venue for introducing lots of new toy product. The wait between SDCC and Toy Fair seems longer and longer each year. But in the meantime, we still have a great handful of products to look at.  Let's check them out below!

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.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Marvel Legends - VALKYRIE!

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster Wave - Fearless Defenders - Hasbro 2015

This year has been an absolutely insane one for Marvel Legends. The distribution, production quality, and character selection has been out of this world - and every new wave surprises me even more. When I first saw this Valkyrie figure at conventions and in solicitation images, I was unimpressed. There's no good reason for this, she just looked a little boring and her headsculpt seemed odd. But once again I eat my words because in person this is a pretty fantastic figure. She has one major design flaw which I'll mention below, but other than that, she's a surprisingly great addition to my Marvel Legends ladies. Of course, her inclusion in the line has made me realize how few Norse ladies we have in this scale. Where is Sif? Lady Thor? Enchantress? Not to mention how awesome it would be to get variants of Storm and Moonstar in their Asgardian gear. We have two more years until the next Thor movie. Hopefully we get a wave out of it with lots of these missing women. Let's check out Valkyrie below!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Marvel Legends - THUNDRA!

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster Wave - Fearless Defenders - Hasbro 2015

To me, Thundra always seemed to be Marvel's attempt to create a Wonder Woman character with an extreme and gritty edge. She first appeared in the page of the Fantastic Four in 1972 as a time-travelling Amazon-like warrior seeking to defeat the Thing ("the strongest male warrior of all time") in combat and declare her dominance over all men. Thundra came from a future time when Earth was renamed Femizonia and the US is the United Sisterhood Republic. Men are subjugated and women rule absolutely. Thundra was genetically engineered and trained since birth to be a perfect warrior and she made the rounds in the Marvel Universe challenging other powerful heroes to battle. She's been a hero and an antogonist (I wouldn't say "villain" because her goals are never evil), and she's also notable for being the mother of Lyra. Lyra was conceived in the future from tissue samples of the Hulk, and for a while in the comics Lyra wore Thundra's outfit with only her green skin tone distinguishing Mother and daughter.