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Points of Articulation

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yo go re
What I bought - 2009

Welcome, friends, to another look at my wildly mis-spent finances (or perhaps my wildly misplaced values). Like last year, I started at the beginning of the year and kept track of everything by day. Why? Just for your entertainment, really - as well as my own embarrassment.

As predicted, I seem to have gotten less stuff this year. Rising prices, dwindling selection, all that. But enough preamble! Let's get to it:

January
07
GI Joe Comic Pack #6 $10.48 Target
Trick 'r Treat Sam ($18.01) FYE
09
TF Universe Brawn $.07 Wal*Mart
TF Universe Beachcomber $.07 Wal*Mart
TF Animated Blurr $.07 Wal*Mart
TF Animated Swindle $.07 Wal*Mart
10
DCU6 Hawkman $12.59 Wal*Mart
DCU6 Dr. Impossible $12.59 Wal*Mart
14
Cosmic Spidey/Venom Minimates $7.62 local comicshop
Classic Spidey/Shocker Minimates $7.62 lcs
Back-in-Black Spidey/Kraven Minimates $7.62 lcs
Back-in-Black Spidey/Tarantula Minimates $7.62 lcs
Cloak & Dagger Minimates $7.62 lcs
War Machine/Spy Smasher Minimates $7.62 lcs
Gamora/Nova Minimates $7.62 lcs
19
DCU6 Mr. Miracle $12.60 Wal*Mart
20
Devastator statue ($165.49) eBay
21
GI Joe SpyTroops Flint vs. Blackout $5.12 eBay
DCU Adam Strange & Starfire $33.55 eBay
24
TF Animated Blitzwing ($21.16) Wal*Mart
28
DCD Watchmen Rorschach $16.21 lcs
30
Bionic Commando ($14.83) TRU
Totals
22 purchases (32 figures) $156.76
February
10
Secret Invasion Minimates $21.19 local comicshop
11
Star Trek DS9 Kira Nerys $15.25 lcs
Stargate Atlantis Ronon Dex $15.25 lcs
13
TF Animated Wreck-Gar $23.31 Target
17
MotU Classics Faker $31.79 NYCC
DCU6 Black-Suited Superman ($12.59) Wal*Mart
18
Superhero Squad Cyclops/Marvel Girl $7.41 Target
Superhero Squad Shocker/Spider-Man $7.41 Target
GI Joe Airborne $7.41 Target
GI Joe Para-Viper $7.41 Target
19
DCU6 Killer Moth $12.59 Wal*Mart
DCU6 Shazam $12.59 Wal*Mart
21
X-Men Origins Strike Mission Wolverine $2.11 TRU
Superhero Squad Weapon X/Mystique $2.38 Wal*Mart
Superhero Squad Nick Fury/Skrull $2.38 Wal*Mart
Superhero Squad SHIELD Agent/Skrull $2.38 Wal*Mart
Combat Heroes Storm Shadow/Barbecue $7.41 Kmart
Combat Heroes Beachhead/Serpentor $7.41 Kmart
Combat Heroes Baroness/Flint $7.41 Kmart
Combat Heroes Destro/Scarlett $7.41 Kmart
25
TF Animated Samurai Prowl $12.71 Target
GI Joe Ghost HAWK $17.91 TRU
Superhero Squad Uncanny X-Men $12.69 Wal*Mart
Superhero Squad Hunt for Mr. Sinister $12.69 Wal*Mart
Superhero Squad Wolverine on the Run $12.69 Wal*Mart
Totals
25 purchases (47 figures) $269.19
March
03
TF Animated Elite Guard Bumblebee $10.59 TRU
04
DCD Watchmen Silk Spectre $16.21 local comicshop
GI Joe Eel $7.41 Target
06
X-Men Origins Maverick $8.47 TRU
X-Men Origins Deadpool $8.47 TRU
Marvel Universe Black Panther $8.47 TRU
Marvel Universe Silver Surfer $8.47 TRU
DCU7 Kid Flash $11.67 TRU
Star Wars Luke in Stormtrooper Disguise $7.91 Wal*Mart
Star Wars Han in Stormtrooper Disguise $7.91 Wal*Mart
10
Superhero Squad Spider-Man/Mysterio $3.71 Five Below
Superhero Squad Spider-Man/Black Cat $3.71 Five Below
Superhero Squad Venom/Puma $3.71 Five Below
11
Star Wars Spacetrooper $7.91 Wal*Mart
Star Wars Jawa/Treadwell droid $7.91 Wal*Mart
17
DCU7 Aquaman $12.60 Wal*Mart
DCU7 Blue Beetle $12.60 Wal*Mart
DCU7 Captain Cold $12.60 Wal*Mart
18
DCU7 Booster Gold $12.60 Wal*Mart
GH Luminara Unduli/Super Battledroid $7.41 Target
22
Spider-Man Tarantula $11.65 Target
Marvel Universe Ronin $8.47 Target
24
TF Animated Bulkhead $21.20 Kmart
25
GI Joe Comic Pack #10 $10.59 Target
SHS Ultimate Cap/Black Widow $7.41 Target
27
Marvel Legends Icons Phoenix $21.19 TRU
Totals
26 purchases (33 figures) $260.85
April
01
Superhero Squad Rhino/Armored Spidey $7.41 Target
Superhero Squad Avalanche/Beast $7.41 Target
Star Wars Comic Pack #33 $10.59 Aldi
Star Wars Comic Pack #40 $10.59 Aldi
Star Wars Comic Pack #35 $10.59 Aldi
Halo Security Spartan Soldier $13.77 Gamestop
03
WoW Brave Highmountain $23.32 local comicshop
Marvel Select Anti-Venom $10.59 lcs
Ame-Comi Cheetah $26.49 lcs
07
small metal Juggernaut $.53 lcs
08
TF Universe Hot Shot $8.47 TRU
TF Universe Ratchet $9.56 Target
14
TF Crossovers Thor $13.77 Kmart
Marvel Universe Daredevil $7.41 Kmart
20
Indie Spotlight Kabuki $--.-- Shocker Toys
21
Galactic Heroes Padme/Jar-Jar $7.38 Wal*Mart
WWF Sgt. Slaughter $8.47 TRU
23
GI Joe box set $26.47 Wal*Mart
26
Microman Godzilla KM-03 ($17.99) Amok Time
Indie Spotlight Katchoo ($14.99) Amok Time
Indie Spotlight ShadowHawk ($14.99) Amok Time
Indie Spotlight ShadowHawk variant ($16.99) Amok Time
DCU7 Big Barda ($12.99) Amazon.com
GI Joe Hall of Heroes B.A.T. ($12.99) Amazon.com
Spider-Man Venom $6.08 Target
Spider-Man Juggernaut $6.08 trade
Totals
26 purchases (36 figures) $214.98
May
02
DCU7 Big Barda $14.41 local comicshop
07
Robot Heroes Mudflap/Rampage $7.41 Target
09
Wolverine/Silver Fox Minimates $7.41 TRU
NBX Oogie Boogie plush $5.30 Five Below
Indiana Jones Troop Car $5.30 Five Below
Marvel Universe X-Force Wolverine $7.41 Kmart
Marvel Universe Stealth Iron Man $7.41 Kmart
TF Crossovers Captain America $13.77 Kmart
Castlevania Simon Belmont $16.22 FYE
GI Joe Firefly $7.62 FYE
GI Joe Resolute Cobra Trooper $7.62 FYE
13
Marvel Universe Hand Ninja $8.47 Target
Marvel Universe Cyclops $8.47 Target
15
DCU4 Artemis $--.-- gift
16
Marvel Universe Ms. Marvel $8.97 Wal*Mart
Superhero Squad Scarlet Spider/Bullseye $7.41 Wal*Mart
Superhero Squad Tigra/Spider-Man $7.41 Wal*Mart
Mighty Muggs Optimus Prime $8.14 Target
20
JLU Parasite $5.29 Target
JLU Sinestro $5.29 Target
21
GI Joe Sea Command $8.47 Ross
22
Star Wars Unleashed IG-88 $20.00 lcs
Spirit Minimates $15.00 lcs
Wonder Man/Union Jack Minimates $7.41 TRU
Punisher/Jigsaw Minimates $7.41 TRU
The Spirit $10.58 Spencer's
JLU The Question $8.47 Target
27
RE5 Sheva Alomar $14.42 FYE
RE5 Executioner Majini $14.42 FYE
DCD Elseworlds Flash $5.24 FYE
30
Robot Heroes Bumblebee/Long Haul $7.38 Wal*Mart
TF ROTF Ransack $8.47 TRU
TF ROTF Dirt Boss $8.47 Target
Totals
33 purchases (47 figures) $229.53
June
02
Captain America/Red Skull Minimates $6.39 local comicshop
03
TF ROTF Soundwave $12.59 Wal*Mart
TF ROTF Sideswipe $12.59 Wal*Mart
06
Bionicle Mata Nui $13.77 TRU
T-800 (Pescadero Escape) $14.83 TRU
T-800 (Man or Machine) $14.83 TRU
Alien Warrior $14.83 TRU
08
Indie Spotlight Scud exclusive $--.-- Amok Time
09
TF Universe Superion $31.79 Target
Star Wars George Lucas $27.94 Amazon.com
12
TF ROTF The Fallen $19.07 TRU
16
JLU Superwoman $5.29 Target
19
BPRD Buddies Red/Golden Army Soldier $9.53 TRU
BPRD Buddies Nuada/Mr. Wink $9.53 TRU
GI Joe Resolute five-pack $18.53 Target
23
DC Super Friends Cyborg $7.41 Target
Marvel Universe Ms. Marvel $8.97 Wal*Mart
24
TF ROTF Human Alliance Bumblebee $36.49 TRU
Bullseye/Moonstone Minimates $7.41 TRU
30
SHS Deathlok/Iron Man 2020 $7.38 Wal*Mart
Totals
20 purchases (34 figures) $251.23
July
01
TF Titanium Thrust $17.80 Target
TF Titanium Hot Zone $17.80 Target
TF ROTF Ravage $7.62 Target
TF ROTF Chromia $7.62 Target
03
TF ROTF Mixmaster $9.07 TRU
07
Guitar Hero Johnny Napalm $5.30 Five Below
Narnia Minotaur $5.30 Five Below
15
Gears of War Headshot Locust $19.99 Amazon.com
19
Wolverine/Agent Zero Minimates $7.40 TRU
GI Joe Desert Ambush Scarlett $5.30 Wal*Mart
GI Joe Cobra Commander $5.30 Wal*Mart
GI Joe Desert Ambush Duke $5.30 Wal*Mart
GI Joe Baroness $5.30 Wal*Mart
20
TF ROTF Constructin' Devastator $5.00 eBay
21
GI Joe Shipwreck $5.30 Wal*Mart
GI Joe Paris Pursuit Storm Shadow $5.30 Wal*Mart
22
Action League Batman/Gentleman Ghost $13.77 TRU
25
TF ROTF Legends Optimus Prime $5.27 Wal*Mart
TF ROTF Legends Jetfire $5.27 Wal*Mart
29
Wolverine Through the Ages Minimates $15.25 local comicshop
30
Toy Box Heroes Rex/Mr. Potato Head $4.23 TRU
Totals
21 purchases (32 figures) $158.50
August
03
ML Daredevil $11.07 Wal*Mart
ML Punisher $11.07 Wal*Mart
ML Punisher (camo) $11.07 Wal*Mart
TF ROTF Longhaul $19.07 Target
04
GI Joe DVD Battles set 1 $20.00 local comicshop
GI Joe DVD Battles set 3 $20.00 lcs
GI Joe DVD Battles set 4 $20.00 lcs
GI Joe DVD Battles set 5 $20.00 lcs
GI Joe Croc Master $5.79 lcs
GI Joe Cobra Bazooka Trooper $5.79 lcs
GI Joe Pit Commando $1.12 TRU
WWE Classic Superstars Goldberg $1.12 TRU
06
TF ROTF Stratosphere $19.07 Target
JLU villains $21.19 Target
Mighty World SWAT $5.00 Target
07
Iron Man Stealth Striker Armor $7.42 Wal*Mart
TF ROTF Ejector $2.67 Wal*Mart
TF ROTF Scalpel $2.67 Wal*Mart
GI Joe Ice-Viper $5.29 Target
11
GI Joe ROC Agent Helix $5.30 TRU
GI Joe ROC Flash $5.29 TRU
GI Joe ROC Elite Viper $5.30 TRU
GI Joe ROC Zartan $5.29 TRU
Combat Heroes Duke/Baroness $7.41 TRU
Combat Heroes Snake-Eyes/Viper $7.41 TRU
15
GI Joe Rise of Cobra Eel $.30 TRU
GI Joe Paris Pursuit Snake-Eyes $.29 TRU
22
ML Maria Hill/Iron Man $24.37 TRU
ML Nick Fury/Hand Ninja $24.37 TRU
ML Kree/Skrull $24.37 TRU
HP6 Ginny Weasley $14.83 TRU
WoW Walrus $26.49 TRU
26
Halo Hyabusa Armor $18.01 FYE
Ultimate Cap/SHIELD Agent Minimates $8.47 lcs
Ultimate Thor/Nick Fury Minimates $8.47 lcs
Deadpool/Wolverine Minimates $8.47 lcs
Gambit/Psylocke Minimates $8.47 lcs
Sabretooth/Skrull Minimates $8.47 lcs
Totals
39 purchases (70 figures) $397.78
September
02
TF Universe Bruticus $31.79 Target
Mighty Muggs Snake-Eyes $8.48 Kmart
Mighty Muggs Megatron $5.09 Kmart
05
TF ROTF Skids & Mudflap $10.60 Wal*Mart
TF Alternity Covoy Super Black $59.90 Amazon.com
Iron Man/AIM Agent Minimates $7.41 TRU
Action League Green Arrow/Sportsmaster $7.41 Target
10
Gb Louis Tully/Slimer Minimates $7.41 TRU
Gb Peter Venkman/Terror Dog Minimates $7.41 TRU
Gb Winston/Taxi Driver Minimates $7.41 TRU
Gb Egon/Jogger Ghost Minimates $7.41 TRU
Gb Ray Stantz/Stay-Puft Minimates $7.41 TRU
9 $14.83 TRU
12
BD Wolverine/Gambit Minimates $7.41 TRU
WWII Wolverine/Deadpool Minimates $7.41 TRU
SHS X-Cutioner's Song $11.65 Wal*Mart
15
Star Wars TF Ahsoka Tano $12.71 Wal*Mart
21
GI Joe Gung-Ho/Copperhead $14.80 Wal*Mart
GI Joe Tunnel Rat/Monkeywrench $14.80 Wal*Mart
GI Joe Shockblast/Night Creeper $14.80 Wal*Mart
22
DCU8 Vigilante $13.77 TRU
DCU9 Black Canary $13.77 TRU
DCU9 Green Arrow $13.77 TRU
DCU9 Mantis $13.77 TRU
DCU9 Mantis $13.77 TRU
DCU9 Wildcat $13.77 TRU
26
MU Hobgoblin $5.30 Wal*Mart
MU Moon Knight $5.30 Wal*Mart
29
MU Red Hulk $10.59 FYE
ML Daredevil $--.-- trade
Totals
29 purchases (49 figures) $299.46
October
02
Skelanimals Dax in Disguise $7.41 Target
06
DCU10 Power Girl $13.75 Wal*Mart
DCU10 Joker $13.75 Wal*Mart
DCU10 Beast Boy $13.75 Wal*Mart
DCU10 Robot Man $13.75 Wal*Mart
DCU10 Forager $13.75 Wal*Mart
DCU10 Man-Bat $13.74 Wal*Mart
TF Classics Inferno $--.-- gift
T2 Cyberdyne Showdown $18.01 FYE
T2 Final Battle $18.01 FYE
WWE Build n' Brawl Mark Henry $6.97 Wal*Mart
TF ROTF Arcee $10.60 Wal*Mart
10
Retro Sabretooth/Skrull Minimates $10.00 BCC
DCD Teen Titans Terra $5.00 BCC
DCD Watchmen Nite Owl $5.00 BCC
GI Joe Beachhead/Mainframe $10.00 BCC
DCU8 Commander Steel $14.00 BCC
DCU9 Deadshot $15.00 BCC
DCU9 Guardian $15.00 BCC
DCU9 Black Adam $15.00 BCC
Marvel Handful of Heroes $6.32 Wal*Mart
12
Molecule Man/Spider-Woman Minimates $6.66 TRU
Angel/Warpath Minimates $6.67 TRU
Robot Heroes Battle of the Fallen $14.20 TRU
WWF Trish Status $13.56 Kmart
14
DCU PE Batman $13.77 Target
DCU PE Superman $13.77 Target
DCU PE Icicle $13.77 Target
DCU PE Silver Banshee $13.77 Target
17
TF AllSpark Rubik's Cube $7.94 Kmart
TF Universe Powerglide $13.77 TRU
18
Cykons Res-Q $5.29 Ollie's
19
Harry Potter Mad-Eye Moody $9.53 TRU
20
Madballs Occulus Orbus $2.12 Five Below
Madballs Wolf Breath $2.12 Five Below
27
Kingdom Hearts Sora $26.02 TRU
Astro Boy Trashcan & Weapons Drone $5.08 TRU
TF Universe Leo Prime $22.25 TRU
Totals
37 purchases (53 figures) $383.55
November
04
GI Joe Sgt. Stone $5.30 Wal*Mart
GI Joe The Doctor $5.30 Wal*Mart
09
TF ROTF Devastator $84.79 TRU
11
Halo Flood Pure Form Stalker $11.65 Target
13
Star Wars Cad Bane $3.47 TRU
X-Men Origins Iceman $3.47 TRU
Twilight Alice $18.01 FYE
DCD Atrocitus $13.53 local comicshop
GI Joe Mantis Attack Craft $16.93 Wal*Mart
MU Captain America/Skrull Giant-Man $28.58 Wal*Mart
16
MotU Scareglow $24.35 Matty Collector
DCU Color of Fear $29.35 Matty Collector
17
ML Beast $8.82 Wal*Mart
ML Black Bolt $8.83 Wal*Mart
Indie Spotlight Scud $22.91 Amazon.com
Indie Spotlight Sol $19.92 Amazon.com
Indie Spotlight Maxx $39.98 Amazon.com
21
Star Wars Slave Leia $7.94 Target
Star Wars Comic Pack #44 $1.36 Target
JLU Amanda Waller/General Eiling $12.70 Target
23
BioShock Big Daddy $26.49 FYE
ML Tigra $11.07 Wal*Mart
24
Heavy Artillery Iron Man $11.12 Target
Combat Heroes Cover Girl/Destro $3.71 Target
CH Snake-Eyes/Storm Shadow $3.71 Target
25
Robot Heroes Ironhide/Mixmaster $3.71 Wal*Mart
Robot Heroes Jolt/Ravage $3.70 Wal*Mart
27
Vault Guard/Spider-Girl Minimates $8.47 lcs
Insulated Spidey/Electro Minimates $8.47 lcs
House of M Spidey/Scorpion Minimates $--.-- lcs
X-Force Wolvie/Hydra Agent Minimates $8.47 lcs
Armored DD/Moon Knight Minimates $8.47 lcs
Black Panther/Storm Minimates $--.-- lcs
28
GI Joe City Strike Snake-Eyes $5.30 Wal*Mart
TF Universe Bruticus $1.05 TRU
Schleich Meerkats $1.05 TRU
29
Futurama Kif $2.00 toy show
JLU Superfriends $15.00 toy show
SportsPicks Jay Cutler $10.00 toy show
Ghost Rider w/ Bike $8.00 toy show
Totals
40 purchases (65 figures) $334.16
December
03
Combat Heroes Snake-Eyes/Ice-Viper $5.29 Target
08
DCD Kryb $15.25 local comicshop
Infinity Gauntlet Minimates $15.25 lcs
TF Animated Electrostatic Soundwave $12.60 Wal*Mart
09
Star Wars Crimson Empire set $21.19 Rite Aid
Secret Wars Minimates $14.83 TRU
11
GI Joe Benchpress $5.29 TRU
GI Joe Benchpress $5.30 TRU
SHS Spidey/Vulture $5.29 Target
SHS Wolverine/Silver Samurai $5.29 Target
15
First Appearance X-Men Minimates $19.77 AFX
X-Factor Minimates $19.77 AFX
17
ML Nova $6.95 trade
21
Silence of the Lambs Minimates $12.99 Amazon.com
Marvel Universe Spider-Man/Thunderball $9.99 Amazon.com
Silver Surfer/Swordsman Minimates $7.94 TRU
22
Star Wars Joker Squad $10.74 Entertainment Earth
Combat Heroes Scarlett/Neo-Viper $5.29 Target
23
DC Super Friends Hawkman $16.05 Matty Collector
DCU11 Katma Tui $16.06 Matty Collector
DCU11 John Stewart $16.05 Matty Collector
DCU11 Deadman $16.06 Matty Collector
DCU11 Steppenwolf $16.05 Matty Collector
DCU11 Steppenwolf $16.06 Matty Collector
DCU11 Shark $16.05 Matty Collector
DCU11 Question $16.06 Matty Collector
DCU11 Cyborg $16.05 Matty Collector
DCU B'Wana Beast/Animal Man $26.06 Matty Collector
Wolverine/Blob Minimates $7.41 TRU
25
MotU Classics He-Ro $--.-- trade
Masterpiece Skywarp $--.-- gift
Human Alliance Sideswipe $--.-- gift
Human Alliance Skids $--.-- gift
29
Star Wars Comic Pack #42 $6.02 Target
Star Wars Comic Pack #34 $6.01 Target
Totals
35 purchases (74 figures) $389.01

Well, there it is. If that's not everything, then it's darn close. There were 122 days in 2009 where I bought something, and the majority of those trips involved multiple purchases at multiple stores - that works out to be a purchase every three days. However, I did a much better job of sticking to my budget: in other words, I was still way over, but I wasn't way way over. Obviously the effort I put into staying on-target helped.

Last year, Toys Я Us was the #1 spot where I bought toys - this year, Wal*Mart pulled alongside, creating a tie. Looking at the breakdown, it was TRU's decision to start carrying "collector" lines (like Minimates and NECA) that kept them in contention, which really says that choice was a smart one.

The biggest surprise for me this year was that I bought nothing at Suncoast or Hot Topic. Both of those used to be pretty reliable outlets for toys, but this year? Not so much. That may also be related to TRU's wider range of products: they start pulling business from "market six" stores like those, and those stores stop ordering, falling back on their main revenue streams. Only one figure from Spencer's? I got more toys mailed to me from Ireland than I bought in a mall this year!

A few notes: a five-figure box set counts as one purchase, but as five figures. Build-A-Figures are not counted in the totals, even if I buy all the pieces to assemble them. Things that I bought for trades aren't included on the list, but the things that I got from trades are. I get a 10% discount from my regular comicshop, which is included. Any coupons or sales have been subtracted before the items go on the list.

Here are some numbers:

  • Total number of purchases: 352
  • Total number of figures: 568
  • Total money spent: $3,345
  • Average spent per purchase: $9.50
  • Average spent per figure: $5.89
  • Average per month: $278.75; 29.33 purchases; 47.33 figures
  • Average per week: $64.33; 6.77 purchases; 10.92 figures
  • Average per day: $9.16; .96 purchases; 1.56 figures
  • By store:
    • TRU: 78 purchases
    • Wal*Mart: 78 purchases
    • Target: 58 purchases
    • Comicshops: 51 purchases
    • Kmart: 14 purchases
    • FYE: 13 purchases
    • Five Below: 9 purchases
    • Spencer's: 1 purchase
  • Longest gap between purchases: 10 days (Jan. 31 - Feb. 9)
  • Most days in a row with purchases: 4 (Oct. 17-20)
  • Most expensive day: July 1 ($291.34)
There were still quite a few things I wanted to get and never did, but I do enjoy everything I got. With any luck, 2010 will be even closer to staying on-budget.


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