Monday, August 30, 2010

Canceled Action Figure Cavalcade: Earthworm Jim

I was a big fan of Earthworm Jim. I played the video games, watched the short-lived animated series, and for awhile there I even co-opted "Groovy" as my catchphrase. And I had nearly everything released in the Earthworm Jim toyline produced by Playmates Toys. All I was missing were the Jim variants. Considering my short attention span then (and now) it was rare for me to have that much from a single line. I question if I would have been able to keep up had Playmates released the second series of Earthworm Jim toys. I just wish I had gotten the chance to try.

One of the figures Playmates planned to make was Queen Pulsating, Bloated, Festering, Sweaty, Puss Filled, Malformed, Slug-for-a-Butt. There was a time when I could recite her entire name from memory. That time has long since passed but I still want the Queen's action figure. I'm guessing she would have been way underscaled compared to the rest of the line but I wouldn't have minded one bit.

Equally as desirable of a figure as the Queen is Professor Monkey-For-A-Head. The Professor looks like he would have used as much plastic for two figures. It looks amazing and I want one now.

Rounding out the new characters is The Hamstinator, a character created for the animated series. I think if there had to be a character from the series I would have preferred Evil Jim. And if they had to include a hamster I would have preferred a giant hamster vehicle for Jim to ride on like in the video game level "Tube Race".

Of course the second series was going to include Jim variants. They're not bad but I like these less than the variants that were released, so I probably wouldn't have bought these either. This Jim is in samurai armor, which looks like it could be slightly mecha influenced. It'd be cool if those were removable katanna on his back.

This Jim looks like a repaint of the main Jim from the first series with a new torso wearing a harness. Perhaps it's meant to be a bungee jumping Jim inspired by the "Snot A Problem" level from the first game?

The Crazed Cycle would have been the second vehicle in the line. While I loved Playmate's Pocket Rocket, (Please don't take that quote out of context) it wasn't accurate to the Pocket Rocket as it was seen in the game or the cartoon. The Crazed Cycle on the other hand comes straight from the toon and looks spot on. Even though I generally prefer the video game based stuff, I quite like the Cycle. It's a motorcycle that shoots eyeballs. I'd have to be pretty joyless not to appreciate that.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Metabee in the Works

Following up on the previous post, here's a picture of the unpainted prototype for D-Arts Metabee. It's looking pretty good. If and when Bandai announces more D-Arts of Medabots it would be cool if their armor and weapons featured some level of interchangeability.

In addition to the D-Arts figure, Bandai is also releasing a plastic model kit of Omegamon. I was wondering why they redesigned him, but apparently this is Omegamon X from Digital Monster X Evolution a CGI TV movie that aired in Japan, but not in North America. I think it's cool but I'm not as interested in model kits as I am in action figures. With Digimon becoming more notable in Japan, it makes me wonder how close we are to Xros Wars being licensed and translated.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

D-Arts Digivolve and Robattle

D-Arts are a spinoff of Bandai's popular S.H. Figuarts articulated action figure line. The name stands for Digital Arts although I'm not exactly sure what the unifying theme is supposed to be. Near as I can tell it's main direction seems to be appealing directly to me.

The first three figures in the line are from Digimon. Digimon is back in the spotlight with the new series Xros War but these D-Arts figures hail from the first TV series Digimon Adventure and it's respective movie. The figures are WarGreymon, MetalGarurumon, and their combined form Omegamon, referred to as Omnimon in the English dub.

WarGreymon is already up for pre-order and costs 3465 Yen, which is a little over forty dollars. That doesn't take into account international shipping. It's the price that's holding me back from ordering them. Otherwise these action figures are right up my alley. Still I'll be paying close attention to the line. There are a few characters I can think of a which would fall into "money is of no object" territory.

However D-Arts isn't just a Digimon focused line. The next figure in the works is Metabee from Metarot, known over here as Medabots. There's a new Nineteno DS game in the works so Medabots is also going though something of a revival. I can't believe we're getting high end Medabots toys. I'm still kicking myself for never picking up any of the old Hasbro toys. It's a great time to be a fan of early Millennium anime that aired on Fox Kids.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Playing Catch Up

So I'm finally back after a long hiatus. I've been without the internet for the last few weeks but that's been settled. Here's some recent and not so recent going-ons.
  • This is already old news but I have to acknowledge that at Celebration V this past weekend, Lucasfilm has announced the Star Wars movies are coming to Blu-ray next year. There will be a boxset of all six films, new and vintage behind the scene features, previously unreleased deleted scenes. One thing you won't find on the set are the original theatrical cuts of the classic trilogy, and the same probably goes for the prequel trilogy. Will this be the set that finally gets me to buy my favorite film series? Reply hazy. Ask again later.

  • A less earth shattering news item but also unignorable is Funimation licensing Evangelion 2.0 You Can [Not] Advance. Funimation made this announcement way back on July 30th at Otakaon. Despite the title Funi actually has the 2.22 cut which is apparently the only version that was released on home video in Japan. I have no clue what title the movie will use when Funi releases it on DVD and Blu-ray next year.

  • New episodes of Bleach resume on [adult swim] on August 28th. The last new episode to air in the U.S. was in November. We're over two years behind the Japanese broadcast now. Yeah that sucks.

  • Turtles Forever is being released on DVD next Tuesday. This is Paramount's first Teenage Mutant Ninja Tutles related release since they bought the rights to the series. Unfortunately the reviews are not kind. The DVD contains the 72 minute broadcast cut instead of the full 81 minute version. And for some reason the feature is in letterboxed non-anamorphic widescreen. It's clear the folks at Paramount just didn't care enough to put out even an adequate release. I hope it's not a sign of things to come.

  • So what did I do with my free time without the internet? Read a little, at least more than I usually do. Watched some TV. Watched some DVDs. The live action Masters of the Universe movie holds up pretty well. It's still probably the best live action movie based on toys. If anything I like it better than I used to when I was younger. I enjoyed it up until the end when out of nowhere we learn the Cosmic Key is capable of time travel just so that Courtney Cox's character can have a happy ending. The problem is the time travel puts much of what already happened in the movie into question. Are we dealing with a Dragonball Z-type situation in which alternate realities are being created when the past is changed? Yes I'm incredibly nerdy.