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Points of Articulation

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yo go re
What I bought - 2013

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.

I did a better job of sticking to the budget this year. Is that good or bad? Let's see if we can tell from the monthly breakdown:

January
03
TF Fall of Cybertron Ultra Magnus ($4.00) TRU
TF Fall of Cybertron Starscream ($4.00) TRU
11
DCSC Saint Walker $23.50 Mattel
Watchmen Rorshach $30.55 Mattel
12
Predators Big Red ($11.12) TRU
Predators Falconer ($11.12) TRU
15
Young Justice Kid Flash ($56.09) Amazon
Young Justice Batman ($54.94) Amazon
Left 4 Dead Smoker ($15.89) local comicshop
22
Prometheus Engineer/Trilobite $22.67 TRU
27
The Shadow: Lamont Cranston ($9.99) lcs
28
MvC3 X-23/Felicia $8.10 ActionFigureXpress
MvC3 Wesker/Dr. Doom $8.10 AFX
MvC3 Chun-Li/She-Hulk $8.10 AFX
MvC3 Ryu/Captain America $8.09 AFX
Thundercats Minimates Series 3 $15.25 AFX
29
Playmobil FAO Schwarz Soldier ($7.41) TRU
DC All-Stars New 52 Batgirl $17.48 lcs
Marvel Select Rhino $16.89 lcs
31
Star Wars Battle Damaged Destroyer Droid ($1.00) lcs
Totals
20 purchases (29 figures) $158.73
February
02
AvX Minimates $12.71 TRU
12
DCSC Phantom Stranger $27.90 Mattel
GI Joe Lady Jaye ($10.56) Walmart
GI Joe Joe Colton ($10.56) Walmart
GI Joe Firefly ($10.56) Walmart
GI Joe Roadblock ($10.56) Walmart
IM3 Heroic Age Iron Man ($15.89) Target
15
MOTUC Ram-Man $44.05 Mattel
19
IM3 Classic Iron Man ($14.96) Walmart
IM3 Classic Iron Patriot ($14.96) Walmart
BioShock Infinite Elizabeth $14.81 TRU
TF Kre-O Devastator $11.13 TRU
TF Kre-O Predaking $11.13 TRU
Marvel Select Venom ($22.50) local comicshop
Figuarts Mega Man ($40.50) lcs
26
TF Fall of Cybertron Omega Supreme ($105.99) Amazon
Star Wars Lightsaber assembly Luke Skyalker $2.64 TRU
Star Wars sandstorm Lando Calrissian $5.29 TRU
Totals
18 purchases (31 figures) $129.66
March
05
DCD Arkham City Talia al Ghul ($19.81) local comicshop
06
Prometheus Deacon $13.56 TRU
11
Venture Bros. Hank $9.99 Entertainment Earth
Venture Bros. Dean $9.99 Entertainment Earth
Venture Bros. Dr. Mrs. The Monarch $9.99 Entertainment Earth
12
GI Joe Kre-O Quick Kick $--.-- TRU
Mario K'Nex Princess Peach $--.-- TRU
DCSC Elongated Man $23.55 Mattel
Watchmen Dr. Manhattan $30.50 Mattel
19
TF Prime Smokescreen $7.42 Target
26
TF Kre-O Bruticus $.42 TRU
Minimates Hulk/Juggernaut $7.94 TRU
Minimates Thing/Silver Surfer $7.94 TRU
Minimates Human Torch/Annihilus $7.94 TRU
Minimates Air Walker/Firelord $7.94 TRU
TF Fall of Cybertron Kickback $13.92 Walmart
Totals
16 purchases (26 figures) $151.10
April
09
Alice: Madness Returns Royal Suit ($14.67) local comicshop
Strange Tales Minimates ($14.66) lcs
10
DCSC Larfleeze $30.20 Mattel
DCSC Monsieur Mallah $--.-- Mattel
11
ML4 Protector ($15.44) Amazon
ML4 Red She-Hulk ($19.40) Amazon
16
Predator Jungle Extraction Dutch $16.95 TRU
Planet X Batman $16.56 lcs
19
OMFG Series 3 $10.00 Kickstarter
22
ML4 Hyperion ($16.35) Nerd Rage Toys
23
TFC Hercules ($424.00) eBay
Portal Chell $19.50 TRU
Totals
12 purchases (26 figures) $93.21
May
04
Mars Attacks $16.95 local comicshop
TF DOTM Human Alliance Soundwave ($72.99) eBay
07
Iron Man 3 Superhero Squad $19.08 Target
10
DCSC Flash $21.52 Mattel
Watchmen Silk Spectre $28.53 Mattel
17
Duke Nukem $6.39 TRU
Marvel Universe Hercules $10.59 TRU
SFxTekken Hugo vs. Heihachi $7.94 TRU
SFxTekken Rolenta vs. Kuma $7.94 TRU
IM3 Minimates Heartbreaker/Tony Stark $7.94 TRU
IM3 Minimates Silver Centurion/Skeleton Armor $7.94 TRU
TF Masterpiece Thundercracker $52.90 TRU
21
IM Legends Mark 42 $13.89 Target
IM Legends Iron Patriot $13.89 Target
IM Legends Ultron $13.89 Target
25
GI Joe Tactical Ninja Team $21.29 Target
Walking Dead B/W Michone $29.79 TRU
Walking Dead Glenn & Vest Zombie (7.94) TRU
Walking Dead Carol & Pole Zombie (7.94) TRU
28
Man of Steel Jor-El $11.95 Target
Totals
20 purchases (37 figures) $293.32
June
01
TF2 BLU Pyro ($29.88) Amazon
TF2 BLU Demoman ($29.88) Amazon
04
Man of Steel Zod $16.93 Walmart
Man of Steel Faora $16.93 Walmart
12
DCSC Red Hood $27.90 Mattel
14
Star Trek Minimates Picard/Hugh $6.35 TRU
Star Trek Minimates Sisko/Gul Ducat $6.35 TRU
Star Trek Minimates Janeway/7 of 9 $6.35 TRU
Marvel Universe Puck $8.47 TRU
TF Blitzwing $21.19 TRU
TF Springer $21.19 TRU
Hot Wheels Fig Rig ($1.03) Walmart
15
Thundercats Minimates Series 4 $24.73 AFX
Deadpools Assemble Minimates $24.73 AFX
Jay & Silent Bob Minimates $12.73 AFX
Walking Dead Minimates Hershel's Farm $22.73 AFX
Wolverine Saga Minimates $22.73 AFX
18
Hulk Through the Ages ($18.05) local comicshop
25
Lone Ranger $15.89 TRU
Tonto $15.89 TRU
29
Predator Jungle Disguise Dutch $15.36 TRU
Predator Water Emergence Predator $15.36 TRU
Totals
16 purchases (23 figures) $166.26
July
03
Predator Trophy Wall $27.69 Walmart
09
Venture Bros. Dr. Venture $9.99 Entertainment Earth
Venture Bros. Phantom Limb $9.99 Entertainment Earth
10
DCSC Freddy Freeman $23.52 Mattel
Watchmen Nite Owl $30.53 Mattel
14
Hobbit Azog $40.00 SDCC
ML Thunderbolts $90.00 SDCC
GI Joe/Transformers $100.00 SDCC
MU Deadpool Corps $50.00 SDCC
Albino Predator $25.00 SDCC
Shuma Gorath $50.00 SDCC
24
Bub zombie $--.-- local comicshop
30
TF Swerve ($24.99) Amazon
Totals
9 purchases (27 figures) $382.69
August
02
DCSC Shazam $31.10 Mattel
Man of Steel Superman vs. Zod $31.10 Mattel
10
DCSC Fire $27.90 Mattel
11
Batman '66 wall-climbing set $--.-- Amazon
Batman '66 Riddler $--.-- Amazon
Batman '66 Penguin $--.-- Amazon
Batman '66 Joker $--.-- Amazon
Batman '66 Catwoman $--.-- Amazon
16
GI Joe T'Gin-Zu ($13.49) Will's World
WWE Miss Elizabeth ($26.24) Will's World
27
Vigo the Carpathian $10.60 Big Lots
Alien Genocide two-pack $34.97 TRU
Totals
2 purchases (3 figures) $45.57
September
03
Star Wars Sandtrooper Maul $21.19 TRU
07
TF Trailcutter $13.77 Target
09
Inhumanoids Magnokor $11.00 eBay
11
DCSC Huntress $23.52 Mattel
Watchmen Comedian $30.53 Mattel
12
Left 4 Dead Boomer ($32.92) local comicshop
19
TF Masterpiece Soundwave $101.75 TRU
TMNT Leo/Don ($9.43) Target
Nightmare on Elm Street Fred Krueger $14.41 TRU
Scooby-Doo Friends & Foes $16.95 TRU
Scooby-Doo Mystery Mates $8.47 TRU
21
ML Jean Grey $15.89 HasbroToyShop
ML Hawkeye $15.89 HasbroToyShop
ML Wrecker $15.89 HasbroToyShop
ML Black Panther $15.89 HasbroToyShop
24
TF Orion Pax $13.77 Target
30
Resurrection Of Monstress Night of Noctilca ($24.73) Amazon
Totals
15 purchases (35 figures) $253.87
October
01
GI Joe Ultimate Flint $9.00 TRU
GI Joe Ultimate Snake-Eyes $9.00 TRU
GI Joe Crimson Guard $9.00 TRU
GI Joe Combat Ninja $9.00 TRU
Thor Dark Elf $9.00 TRU
Thor Kurse $9.00 TRU
06
Walking Dead Riot Governor/Biker Zombie $7.94 TRU
Walking Dead Survivor Rick/Shot Zombie $7.94 TRU
Spidey/Rhino $4.24 Big Lots
08
DCD New 52 Joker ($22.48) local comicshop
11
TMNT Raph Mike $9.53 TRU
Universal Select Mr. Hyde $13.77 TRU
Slug Zombies Series 2 $4.13 TRU
12
DCSC Ocean Master $27.90 Mattel
15
TF Fall of Cybertron Thundercracker $13.77 Target
GI Joe Ultimate Firefly $10.59 TRU
TF Fall of Cybertron Grimlock $24.34 Walmart
Return of the Living Dead Tarman ($22.51) lcs
18
Pacific Rim Leatherback ($20.99) Amazon
Pacific Rim BD Gypsy Danger ($20.99) Amazon
Pacific Rim Striker Eureka ($20.99) Amazon
Land of the Dead Butcher ($9.99) Amazon
Land of the Dead Big Daddy ($9.99) Amazon
22
SLUG Zombies 4 $8.46 TRU
Dr. Tongue zombie ($22.51) lcs
26
DCD Solomon Grundy ($31.01) lcs
Totals
30 purchases (57 figures) $189.72
November
02
Bioshock Infinite Boys of Silence $13.56 TRU
Star Wars Black Darth Maul $16.95 TRU
12
Wolverine/Harada Minimates $7.94 TRU
DCSC Ra's al Ghul $23.53 Mattel
Watchmen Ozymandias $30.52 Mattel
Wolverine/Yukio Minimates $7.94 TRU
19
Hawkeye/Black Widow Minimates $1.50 TRU
Superior Spider-Man/Ultimate Electro $1.50 TRU
Rescue/Robot Hulk Minimates $1.50 TRU
Nova/Venom Minimates $1.50 TRU
Star Wars Black R2-D2 $15.94 TRU
ML Scarlet Spider $15.87 Walmart
Zombie Villains Minimates ($18.01) local comicshop
Invincible Minimates ($18.01) lcs
Shana & Sauron Minimates ($8.85) Amazon
Nick Fury & SHIELD Agents Minimates ($10.75) Amazon
Maria Hill & SHIELD Agents Minimates ($11.33) Amazon
ML Sabertooth ($19.73) Amazon
ML Emma Frost ($45.97) Amazon
26
Ghostbusters Rookie $10.60 Big Lots
TF Hardshell ($8.54) Big Lots
29
Battle Beasts Vorin & Vachonus $4.03 Luke's Toy Store
Battle Beasts Merk & Fenruk $4.03 Luke's Toy Store
Battle Beasts Gruntos & Tate Reynolds $4.03 Luke's Toy Store
Battle Beasts Strictus & Bliss Reynolds $4.03 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Ken vs. Steve $6.28 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Sagat vs. King $6.28 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Cammy vs. Nina $6.28 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Poison vs. Lili $6.27 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Ryu vs. Yoshimitsu $6.28 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Abel vs. Kazuya $6.28 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Rufus vs. Julia $6.28 Luke's Toy Store
SFxTekken Chun-Li vs. Hwoarang $6.27 Luke's Toy Store
Tomb Raider Lara Croft & Scavenger Scout $8.03 Luke's Toy Store
Battle Damaged Lara & Armored Scavenger $8.03 Luke's Toy Store
Tomb Raider Roth & Storm Guard General $8.03 Luke's Toy Store
Father Mathias & Sun Queen Himiko $8.02 Luke's Toy Store
Totals
35 purchases (66 figures) $193.25
December
02
TF Kre-O Seacons $8.16 HasbroToyShop
SW Mara Jade $8.16 HasbroToyShop
Avengers Red Skull $8.16 HasbroToyShop
SW Black Han Solo $15.89 HasbroToyShop
03
Steel Divine $6.35 Tuesday Morning
Aliens Hicks vs. Warrior $25.43 TRU
TMNT Bebop $18.54 TRU
TMNT Rocksteady $18.54 TRU
Horror Mystery Minis Leatherface ($7.20) local comicshop
Horror Mystery Minis Sam ($7.20) lcs
Horror Mystery Minis Hannibal Lecter ($7.20) lcs
Age of Ultron ($18.01) lcs
DCD Swamp Thing $25.47 lcs
05
TF Rhinox $15.89 HasbroToyShop
SW Luminara Unduli $7.94 HasbroToyShop
08
ML Puck arms ($10.00) eBay
12
DCSC Batzarro $27.90 Mattel
TF Predaking ($52.99) Amazon
17
Vehicle Voltron $6.35 Tuesday Morning
Captain America/Scarlet Witch Minimates $7.94 TRU
Cyclops/Emma Frost Minimates $7.94 TRU
TMNT Mousers $7.42 Target
23
SW Black Boba Fett $21.19 TRU
Vampire Batman $15.19 Kmart
25
AC3 Ratonhnhake $--.-- gift
AC4 Golden Age of Piracy $--.-- gift
TF Dreadwing $--.-- gift
TF Waspinator $--.-- gift
IM3 Hall of Armor $--.-- gift
31
Thunderbolts Minimates ($18.01) lcs
Figma Samus Aran ($49.55) lcs
Totals
30 purchases (59 figures) $224.56

Well, there it is. If that's not everything, then it's darn close. There were 85 days in 2013 where I bought something, and the majority of those trips involved multiple purchases at multiple stores - that works out to be a buy every four days or so. But this year is also the least amount of money I've spent on toys since I began tracking my spending this way in 2007.

But the main reason for that is that I got a lot more things through my local comicshop, using store credit rather than cash. Of course, I also got most of my comics that way, too, which saved a big chunk of my budget, but that doesn't get tracked here, so it doesn't really matter for the purposes of this discussion. The bigger surprise in the trends was buying from the companies instead of stores, but it was just a question of price - when I can get something directly from Hasbro for less than TRU or Walmart are selling it, why would I wait for the stores to get it in months later? Also, the discount stores mostly disappeared this year; no Ross or TJ Maxx, which either means that the main retailers are ordering in smaller numbers, or they're holding onto the old product for longer. Maybe both.

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 got in trades aren't included on the list. I get a 15% 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: 249
  • Total number of figures: 487
  • Total money spent: $2,745.52
  • Average spent per purchase: $11.03
  • Average spent per figure: $5.64
  • Average per month: $228.79; 20.75 purchases; 40.58 figures
  • Average per week: $52.80; 4.79 purchases; 9.37 figures
  • Average per day: $7.52; .68 purchases; 1.33 figures
  • By store:
    • TRU: 76 purchases
    • Comicshops: 28 purchases
    • Amazon: 25 purchases
    • Mattel: 22 purchases
    • Luke's Toy Store: 16 purchases
    • Walmart: 13 purchases
    • Target: 13 purchases
    • HasbroToyShop: 10 purchases
    • Tuesday Morning: 2 purchases
  • Longest gap between purchases: 13 days (Mar. 27-Apr. 8)
  • Most days in a row with purchases: 3 (Jan. 27-29, Apr. 9-11)
  • Most expensive day: Apr. 23 ($424.00)
The specific type of toy I bought the most this year was Minimates, both because of the amount of new products they put out, and because I was catching up on ones I'd missed in previous years. And I'm trying to think of toys I wanted to get but passed on, but nothing immediately comes to mind. Well, nothing I actually saw in stores - distribution remains a problem.

Notice that the ratio of figures to purchases is nearly 2-to-1: multipacks mean you get the most toys for your money! My resolution for 2013 was to show a marked improvement over 2012, and I succeeded.


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