Monday, February 28, 2011

Feb 2011 Haul

The more stuff I get, the more awkward the photos become as I try to cram it all into a few shots. I received the entire sixteenth wave of DC Universe Classics figures. I think there's only been a single other instance in which I've purchased an entire wave at once. I really wanted Collect N' Connect Bane.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Toy Fair 2011: Follow-up

I started writing this back when Toy Fair didn't already seem like an eon ago. I finally got around to completing it. Pics are from ASMZine.com.


It looks like the 5" vinyl Super Mario line is getting Princess Peach and King Koopa figures as well as a rainbow of Yoshis. While I'll be happy to see these characers get made I wish the character selection went a little deeper. Waluigi is getting a keychain but dangit he deserves more.


I don't know if Diamond Select couldn't afford the likeness rights to Bela Lugosi or if they just weren't available, but man their Dracula figure really suffers for it. The Toy R Us exclusive version has a facial expression that kind of hides it but it still looks more like a generic vampire.


One of the bigger surprises of Toy Fair was NECA's Gremlins line. NECA first releases Gremlins figures eight years ago. They said they had plans for more and it looks like they're finally happening, likely thanks to the reissues from the last year. And it's stunning how dedicated NECA seems to be with multiple Gremlins and Mogwais from Gremlins 2 including the amazing Spider-Gremlin.


Frightening. For many reasons. I guess it'd be silly to criticize Gargamel's scale in relation to the Smurfs but holy crap is that one huge cat.


I think Bandai is doing pretty well by their Power Rangers Samurai line. Everyone got caught off guard by the Mega Rangers figures but that got smoothed out when it turned out those suits are actually in the show. Now figures of the Ranger's standard costumes are coming so everything worked out.


The figure in the foreground on the left is Captain America based on Captain America: The First Avenger. The other figures are based on the comics. It's to Hasbro's credit that even Captain America wearing a winter coast looks like a decent toy. I guess Hasbro didn't receive reference material to make more stuff from the movie. Maybe they'll have more at Comic-Con.


The Thor line on the other hand is a proper movie toyline with several characters represented as figures. Still it would have been nice to see some comic-based Thor figures. See, even I'm ungrateful. Toy companies just cannot win.


A DC Universe Classic Crime Syndicate set? Awesome. And it's a five pack with only a single repeated character, but it's a character that was only available in an online exclusive set and in a different outfit so even that is forgivable. For some reason though Power Ring and Johnny Quick are the silver age versions and the rest are the modern versions. Mattel just can't do anything without being weird somehow.


Jakks Pacific's Pirates of the Caribbean figures have skeletal bodypaint that appears when exposed to what I think is blacklight. I've already seen them in stores and thanks to "Try me" packaging I can vouch that they work. I don't know what the story behind the feature is though. I think it represents the characters' zombie forms or maybe they're just Misfits fans. Jack Sparrow is totally punk rock.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Toy Fair 2011

I've had a busy weekend so I didn't have time to do a very thorough write-up but here are some quick highlights. Pictures are from ASMZine.com.

One line I was looking forward to seeing was the six inch Young Justice figures and they did not dissapoint. I was not expecting the diorama bases. I was hoping to see Superboy, Speedy and Miss Martian though.

The Batman Legacy information ended up being true, but the exact lineup is a bit different than reported. For example there wasn't any mention of Arkham City Two-Face at all but there he is. But hey, Gary Oldman action figure!

Hell hath frozen over. Bandai will release a Rita Repulsa figure. A very ugly Rita Repulsa. Not that it matters because fans will buy it, and so will I if I ever find one. Rita will be a shortpacked chase figure. I think the Juzo Fuwa figure looks better though.

If this Thundercats playset was modeled after the classic Cat's Lair I would have bought it and a collection of 3.75" figures to populate it. While that's not the case it does come with a mini-vehicle that homages the Cat's Lair.

I had my fingers crossed that Mezco would have additional Scott Pilgrim figures to show at Toy Fair. In fact they had less. What happened to Scott with his jacket? Ah well.

This G.I. Joe Skystalker has been repainted to resemble Generation 1 Starscream. It comes with Cobra Commander carrying G1 Megatron in gun mode. It is a Comic Con exclusive this year. It is the greatest thing ever.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Toy Fair 2011: It Begins

Well not really. It officially begins on Sunday. And Hasbro has their event the day before on Saturday. But in the past week companies have shown off a lot of early stuff in anticipation.

Batman Legacy: The craziest pre-Toy Fair news to me is the discovery of a new Batman Legacy line by Mattel. Information was posted at the blog Idle Hands which has been a reliable source. Now a new Batman line isn't surprising. I just wasn't expecting it to be announced until Comic-Con with the toys hitting shelves just before The Dark Knight Rises is released, mirroring how Green Lantern Classics was handled.

The crazy part is the accompanying images. They're pictures of fans' custom figures and some blurry photoshopped images. Now it's not so out of the realm of possibility that these are legit. Mattel has used fanart in their presentations without the artist's permission. (And it's not as bad as Shocker Toys displaying products that were actually customs using an different companies' molds.) The purpose of Toy Fair is to sell products to retailers. These might just be mock-ups to give an idea as to what the toys will eventually look like.

I do hope Batman Legacy is on the level because I want these figures. I didn't even know I wanted Golden Age Batman and Joker figures but now I do. The only thing I take issue are the two-packs. I like the idea of Mattel produced Arkham City figures and continuing the Movie Masters line this way but it seems like we'd have to buy several Batman figures to get any non-Batman ones.

Thundercats: Bandai has released a decent selection of images of the line including classic Lion-O and Tygra figures. Both look great to me. Here's hoping they show off more classic figures at Toy Fair, particularly Cheetara and Mumm-Ra. I also like the designs for the new series. I'm curious to see the six inch figures based on the new show.

Surprisingly Mezco is also producing Thundercats toys. They've revealed a large scale Lion-O. It should be interesting to see what else Mezco has planned for the Thundercats.

The Walking Dead: McFarlane Toys will be making toys based on The Walking Dead. The first series is based on the comic book series and includes the the katana wielding Michonne. Series two will be based on the AMC TV series. It's been some time since McFarlane has done someting I might be interested in. I hope they knock this one out of the park.

Transformers: Earlier this week Hasbro released a bunch of pics of Transformers Prime toys. There's even toys of the kids on the way. I wonder how they'll balance Prime with Dark of the Moon. The show's already in full swing so it'd be nice if there wasn't still months to go before the toys are released.

As for Transformers: Dark of the Moon, the most recent reveal is of Sentinel Prime and the Ark which are most likely the Transformer and spaceship seen in the teaser trailer. And then there's the Optimus Prime with trailer that he can combine with. This is probably the form we saw Optimus rocking in the Super Bowl spot.

Hasbro has the coolest new toy in the form of their Robo Power Cine-Masks. They're masks of Optimus Prime and Bumblebee with RealD-3D glasses built in. That should add some extra fun to the movie's opening night.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Multitude of Tron

Disney is releasing Tron Legacy on home video in a few different configurations. There's a two-disc set with Blu-ray and DVD. There's a four disc set with Blu-ray, DVD, 3D Blu-ray and a Digital Copy. There's a five disc set with Legacy in those four formats plus the original Tron on Blu-ray. The five disc set will be available in both standard and special edition Identity Disc packaging. Or you can buy the original Tron separately in a Blu-ray/DVD combo set. A release date hasn't been announced yet but rumors hint that it's sometime in April.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

9 Most Anticipated of '11

I was pretty reluctant to write another one of these lists. Past experiences have taught me these lists aren't perfect indicators of what I'll eventually like or even what I'll watch. I still haven't seen everything on my 2009 list. And then there's my 2010 list. Not only have I not watched everything on it, there's one movie that is supposed to be legendarily bad.

The problem is I write these lists before there are any solid details, so it becomes a guessing game. There are several months left before the movies are released giving me plenty of time to change my mind, or discover other movies I find even more interesting. I usually go with sequels or adaptations, not anticipating good original movies. Still I've decided to give it another go. So here are my nine most anticipated movies of the year, as they currently stand.

9. Kung Fu Panda 2


The only Dreamworks animated film I like is Kung Fu Panda. I remember enjoying the first Shrek but the sequels have made it hard to look back on the original with any fondness. I am looking forward to Kung Fu Panda 2, but it's possible Dreamworks will end up bungling it. Here's hoping I'll at least be to still watch the first one without cringing.

8. X-Men: First Class


I really, really like the idea of a superhero movie set in the 1960's. But I don't know about the X-Men running around during the Kennedy administration. Sure the comic was created in the '60s but it didn't take off until much later. And First Class features very few of those original X-Men characters. Instead it stars a very odd collection of obscure mutants from the comics. It might be good. Matthew Vaughn impressed me with Kick-Ass and he could impress me with this.

7. Green Lantern


Green Lantern would have ranked higher on this list but after a pretty weak trailer my enthusiasm for the movie has cooled off. I was never a Hal Jordan fan and Ryan Reynolds seems miscast simply by the virtue of having a personality. The one line of dialogue spoken by Blake Lively does not bode well for her acting ability. And we're stuck with giant headed Peter Sarsgaard and Geoff John's living retcon as antagonists for the first movie, I assume because they're saving the more popular villains for the sequels. How about Manhunters? Couldn't they have used Manhunters?

6.The Thing


I don't know if I'm anticipating The Thing or dreading it. I love John Carpenter's 1982 movie. The new film, despite the title, is not a remake but a prequel to the '82 film. I'm not sure if that makes the new Thing more or less exciting. On the one hand it shows a lot of respect to the previous movie to make a prequel nearly 30 years after the fact. On the other hand if the 2011 Thing is bad it will be harder to disavow it since it's set in the same continuity. Will it take away from the mystery of the '82 Thing once we learn the events that occurred at the Norwegian base? The '82 Thing was a remake itself, so no one can claim a remake would have been destined to be bad.

5. Cars 2


Cars is the perfect movie for a sequel. The original is a lot of fun, could have been better, and is in the hands of people with an impeccable record. The plot for Cars 2 involves Lightning McQueen and Tow Mater taking a world trip. That sounds promising to me. By comparison next year's Monsters Inc. 2 strikes me as a bad idea because it's continuing a story that ended on a perfect note.

4. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Part II


I liked Deathly Hollows Part I but I didn't love it. It is only half a movie, so I'll cut it some slack. I am expecting Part II to be excellent. It's the culmination of ten years and eight films. I'm looking forward to a climatic resolution and ideally not a lot of sulking in the forest.

3. Transformers: Dark of the Moon


I'm feeling pretty positive about Dark of the Moon. No really. It's got Shockwave, the Wreckers as stock cars, Optimus Prime with a trailer, Megatron with a decent altmode, Sentinel Prime (or so I think), and a plot that may or may not involve space and/or time travel. How can it not be good? I am not in denial.

2. Thor


It was a close call between my top two choices. Thor ended up in the second slot, mainly just because I don't have the greatest familiarity with the character. Kenneth Branagh is a fascinating choice for the director of this movie. I'm looking forward to seeing what he does with it. The trailer and images have all been encouraging so far.

1. Captain America: The First Avenger


So I went with Captain America for number one. It's a risky move since there's not even a trailer released yet. But I like the character. I like the idea of a superhero movie set during World War II, as much as I like the idea of one set in the '60s. I like Joe Johnston as the director. I like Hugo Weaving as the Red Skull. And I like Chris Evans, but Steve Rogers is pretty far removed from Johnny Storm. Will it all work out? Time will tell.