Saturday, December 16, 2017

Star Wars 6" Black Series - JAINA SOLO!

Star Wars: The Black Series #56 - (Legends) Jaina Solo - Hasbro 2017

As much as I love this current series of Star Wars movies, I must admit I'm a little bummed that they are essentially overwriting much of the Expanded Universe history. Jaina Solo was introduced in the 1994 Star Wars novel The Last Command as the child of Leia Organa and Han Solo (along with her twin brother Jacen Solo). Like a typical Star Wars story, the twins' paths diverge - Jaina becoming a Jedi and Jacen heading to a dark side. While these characters still could appear in the new movies, the events in The Force Awakens makes me think they're just ignoring all the cool backstory (Note: I haven't seen The Last Jedi yet.. So don't feed me spoilers please!). I'm really happy the the Black Series is including more obscure non-film characters. Without those interesting and colorful figures peppered into the line it would be a lot less interesting. It really opens up my future wishlist too: Aayla Secura, Shaak Ti, Oola, and Luminara are at the top. Let's check out Jaina Solo in detail below!

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Star Wars Toybox - REY!

Disney Toybox - Star Wars Action Figures #2 Rey - Disney Store Exclusive - 2017

I'm kind of excited to see what the future of this new Disney Toybox series brings. While I'm not a huge fan of the stylistic design of this Rey figure, some of of the other Infinity characters looked pretty cool. So far, the sculpts of the Toybox figures have been based off the Disney Infinity video game collectible figurines. I always thought a lot of the character designs looked really weird and angry, like this Rey for example. But other characters, like Captain Marvel, Spider-Gwen, Gamora, and White Tiger look pretty awesome. The insert inside the packaging hint at ten additional figures on the horizon (spread across all three branches of the line: Marvel, Pixar, and Star Wars) and four of them appear to be female. The production quality is really great so my hopes are high for some fun new figures. I bought this Rey just to check out the articulation and overall quality, and I'm very impressed. The plastic has a certain animated quality to its texture that's hard to explain. Can't wait to see what's next. Let's check out Rey below!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Star Wars: The Last Jedi 12" - REY (JEDI TRAINING)!

Star Wars: The Last Jedi - 12" Series - Rey (Jedi Training) - Hasbro 2017

I have a small backlog of Star Wars reviews to post and I'm desperately trying to get them all posted before The Last Jedi hits theatres this weekend. There have been times when I used to post almost every day and I have no clue how I did it. But considering I'm about to enter my seventh year doing this blog there were bound to be some changes. I no longer live in a third floor walkup alone with excessive personal time, I have somehow accumulated a massive amount of responsibility at work, and I actually get tired now. Don't get me wrong, I'm still up past 2am most nights of the week, but I used to be a 4am guy. I've had this 12" Last Jedi Rey photographed since the day after Force Friday, but I've always been more excited to post about something else, so poor Rey gets pushed to the back burner again and again. But this is truly a nice looking 12" figure. The face and body proportions have been improved slightly since the Force Awakens figure and the result it terrific. Let's check her out (finally)!

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Star Wars 6" Black Series - ROSE!

Star Wars: The Black Series #55 - Resistance Tech Rose - Hasbro 2017

Star Wars: The Black Series has become quite the powerhouse line. Ten years ago I never would have imagined a 6" Star Wars figure. They pretty much owned the 3.75" scale for decades and the thought of any other size never even entered my head. Then back in 2013 Hasbro announced a 6" scale and I got really excited. Mostly because I love Star Wars, but my personal collecting compulsions and decades worth of vintage product is a dangerous mix that I was terrified to tempt myself with. But a brand new scale? Hell yeah! The first few female characters looked great. But the inclusion of soft goods elements was not well executed and the scales were majorly out of whack. The first three Leia's literally have 0.5 inch differences in height between them. But lately this line has really shaped up. The scales have been much better, the face sculpting technique is really streamlined, and I haven't seen stiff cloth robes in a while (they're still around though). This Rose is a great example of what the line has become.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Star Wars Elite Series - ROSE (and BB-8)!

Star Wars Elite Series - Die-Cast 6" Rose and BB-8 - Disney Store Exc 2017

The Disney Store Elite Series Star Wars figures are pretty great. I wasn't sure how in-depth they'd get with character selection or if they'd take effort to make improvements as the line progressed. Well both of those quandaries were answered in the affirmative. There has been an interesting assortment of characters (all from the modern films however) and all the small gripes I had about the first few figures have been eliminated. Now I wish they would create a similar Marvel line. Even if it was just based off current movie properties, it would be a fun line to collect. I don't know much about this new Rose character yet, but considering the amount of merchandise she's already getting, and especially considering all the different outfits she's been seen in, I'm assuming she's a pretty big deal in the The Last Jedi. I'm excited to see her role, although I have no plans to see the movie until the 25th. It's going to be torture to be waiting and avoiding all the spoilers, but I'll survive. Let's check out Elite Rose below!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Star Wars Galactic Heroes - ROSE!

Star Wars Galactic Heroes - Resistance vs First Order 6-Pack - Playskool 2017

Playskool really needs to step up their game. They have access to some of the greatest character families out there, but they seem to just release the same characters over and over again...and at a snail's pace. This Rose figure was a welcome surprise, but I'm still shocked they haven't flexed their muscles with this line. There isn't even a Princess Leia or Amidala. And when they finally impressed me a few years ago with packaged solicit pics of Hera Syndulla and Sabine Wren, it was inevitable that the figures would never actually hit the shelves. And I won't even get started on the Marvel line. They have access to hundreds of characters and the only female so far is Black Widow. I was 100% sure we'd see a Gamora figure, even if it was just a Natasha repaint, but there has been nothing. A Storm, Wasp, and Invisible Woman seem like really easy characters to bring in to the line, but Playskool seems to want to coast on the same handful of characters in a constant cycle. Someday they'll hopefully up their game.

Friday, December 8, 2017

The New Female Dinobot - SLASH!

Transformers: Power of the Primes - 3.75" Series 01 - Slash - Hasbro 2017

I'm always torn about female Transformers that don't outwardly appear female. It shouldn't matter. They don't have biological forms, and including an exaggerated hourglass body shape or a gigantic chest is just ridiculous. But still, I find myself loving characters that appear typically feminine (like the upcoming Moonracer), and being lukewarm about androgynous characters like Slash here. Slash was a surprise that I first learned about last week. This is the first official toy of a female Dinobot, despite the fact that the (male) Slash character from the movie was originally intended to be female. This is also the first 3.75" Transformers figure I've ever bought. It's an interesting scale and I would definitely pick up more. I also really want to support this Power of the Primes line in any way possible because the female figures on the horizon (Elita-1, Firestar, and Moonracer) are some of my most sought-after toys ever and I want to ensure I get them in my greedy little hands. Let's check out the Dinobot Slash below!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Valerian - LAURELINE!

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets - Series 01 - Laureline - NECA 2017

I realized recently that I really don't trust Rotten Tomatoes scores one bit. I would say the majority of my favorite movies never rank above 40. I have never trusted critic reviews for anything - music, TV, movies, etc. - but I'll admit I was initially very optimistic when RT came along as an aggregate site for public film ratings. But then reality set in. People suck and they never like what I like. I don't mean to be elitist, but considering that the most popular film and TV franchises today are such vapid, hollow, and sensationalized productions says a lot. I really enjoyed Valerian. But I'm the only person I know who enjoyed it. It wasn't a perfect film, but I thought the majority of complaints were baseless. The two leads are relative unknowns in the acting world, their dynamic is intentionally weird, and their outfits are boring. But I didn't want a James Bond in space movie. I wanted lots of aliens, complex interspecies dynamics, and colorful imaginative settings, and Valerian delivered in spades. Let's check out Laurline below!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Late 2017 Collection of MARVEL MINI-MATES!

Marvel Mini-Mates Series 72, TRU 24, and Walgreens Wave 5-7 - DST 2017

Photographing small toys is a bit cumbersome for me. My photo tent is set up for 6 inch figures, so when it comes to the little guys I have to construct a stage of sorts to ensure they're properly lit. So out of laziness I tend to pile up a bunch of tiny figures and photograph them all at once. Mini-mates are a prime example of that. This post will collect all the Mini-mates I've picked up since May (when the Guardians of the Galaxy waves hit). Included will be Spiral, Hela, Gwenpool, Ms. Marvel, Captain Marvel, Black Cat, Proxima Midnight, Spider-girl (Petra Parker), Medusa, and White Tiger. Diamond Select Toys really haven't been skimping with character selection. It seems like every couple months there is some heavy-hitter heroine on the shelves. Plus I love having yet another reason to stalk all my Walgreens stores. I hope Mini-mates last a long long time and I will keep buying them as long as they keep this level of character diversity up. Let's check out this newest batch of Mini-mate ladies below!