Mattel - Toy Story 3 Buddy Packs: Bookworm & "Astronaut" Barbie
Oh my god... the rarest of all Mattel packs - all-new sculpts, a theme, and reference to a single, great sightgag. If only the rest of the line was managed like this we'd have something really special. Oh well... the set still cost a disgusting $8. Bookworm's head turns and Barbie has neck and bicep articulation, plus a clear, pegged disc to let her stand. The helmet isn't removable, but she does have a huge gold zipper on her back. The sculpts are softer than the other/previous figures in the line, and the paint isn't anything special.
Hasbro - Star Wars Galactic Heroes: Stormtrooper & Rebel Trooper
Picked this up on sale at TRU, one can never have enough battle builders. Aaaaah Galactic Heroes... the line that died, resurrected, created a whole subgenre and is now piddling out. Articulation at the necks and shoulders.
Hasbro - G.I. Joe Combat Heroes: Shana "Scarlett" O'Hara & Neo-Viper
Toys R Us finally had these marked down, and to $2, so of course I bought in. Mainly I just got this set cause it was $2, but the neo-viper looks kinda neat. yo disagrees with me but man, what a horrible, horrible movie.
Hasbro - G.I. Joe Combat Heroes: Courtney "Cover Girl" Krieger & Destro
I've got a spot of an obsession with Destro. I think its really a nostalgia thing going back to getting a figure of him in the early '90s, one of the very few Joe figures I had. Cover Girl is not only a character I've never heard of but a fully useless figure. Destro is cool though. Bad guys in business suits are always cool, especially when facially entombed in metal.
Hasbro - G.I. Joe Combat Heroes: Conrad "Duke" Hauser & Para-Viper
Ugh... yes the codenames work better as toys than as real humans but there's just something very wrong to me about Joes with "real people" names - especially such pretentious ones. I mean... Conrad Hauser? With a name like that its no wonder they cast the Meathead Special. The body suit on Duke is pretty neat but the reason this set is a must-have is the Para-Viper. Not just a cool, bulky costume, but a really cool free-fall "action pose." It would be nice if he were removable from the cloud base, that would make him more of a toy/enjoyable for kids, but seeing as he's going on a shelf for me it ain't too big a problem.
Hasbro - G.I. Joe Combat Heroes: Wallace "Ripcord" Weems & Wild Bill
Wallace Weems!? Come on... Maybe I'm just biased because I had a substitute teacher in High School named Doug Weems (yes, the bassist of forgotten punk band 98 Mute). At any rate Wild Bill is clearly the standard GI Joe design, since the character didn't appear in the film, and was probably sculpted for the failed non-movie line then repainted in the terrible "Street Fighter: The Movie" blue camo to fit in. The real star is Mr. Weems rocking the stupidly conceived Accelerator suit. Its not color-accurate ot the film, but actually looks really cool in the steel/blue color scheme, with the orange visor (which does flip up). Despite the dumb "real name" and casting of Marlon Wayans this figure is really cool for me.
Hasbro - Marvel Universe: Galactus & Silver Surfer
Finally I caught up and got 2010's #1 Toy of the Year (thanks BFF for the giftcard making this purchase possible). I do very much love me some Galactus, but this is my least favorite toy of him since the Silver Surfer line in the late '90s. But why, oh why, Rustin!? He's just too bulky for me, too wide. I'm also not too crazy about the design of the head. The light-up feature (wasn't the light supposed to be blue? Mine is orange... odd choice) is a cute idea but because of it, the back of The Devourer's head is see-through... WTF. Also, and I get that it's based on/inspired by the recent videogame, the head looks way more tech-detailed than the rest of the body, so it's just a weird mish-mash of styles to my eye. I will say this though, the articulation works really well, i.e. holds poses very well with no limb sagging, and he stands like a rock - take Marvel Legends BAF Galactus. He comes with the third release of the Silver Surfer to date, and technically the best. That's because he's painted in a very solid, shiny silver paint. Still has plenty of trouble staying on his board, and frankly the color of paint is minor enough that anyone who has the original carded figure will find this a waste of money, plastic and space.
Spin Master - Tron Legacy: Three Man Light Jet
I LOVE SURPRISE TOYS!!! And frankly, no one is surpsing me more lately that Ol' Mr. No Press, Spin Master. On my third pass of the "collector" aisle I finally registered this underneath the handful of remaining Identity Discs. A total surprise they made, its been released and that TRU had it - they seemed to get out of the Tron business pretty fast. This is pretty solid toy vehicle for $28. Fully assembled it's got a wingspan of about 24", seats two people in the cabin, has two missle launchers that light up with fired and has a pop-up gun turret in the back which fits a third figure. The bad news is that the scales of this are, understandably, heavily cheated. I do wish the body were proportionally longer to better match what was on the screen, but what're ya gonna do? This is the least impressive light-up feature of the entire line - the missile launchers light up indepently and only when the firing button is pressed down. Pretty lame. Figures fit very well into the cabin and turret, but because of the spring loaded guns a figure can't stay in the turret when it's in the "collapsed" format. Also, you have to manually open the tail and then manually push the turret off of pegs holding it in place to get it to spring up into place. I would have much preferred a press-button that flipped open the cavity and popped up the turret in one fell swoop; as is it just feels like too much work for kids. I'll also add that my missile do not "click" into place in the launchers and therefore un-fireable. Not a huge problem expect that they now only hang loosely ¼" out of place from the launcher. I know that reads like a lot of complaints but overall I'm really happy with this toy - its certainly the most value for the money of the entire Tron Legacy line, and it's a much-needed addition to the catalog and a welcome compatriot to the recent One Man Light Jet. This ship does serve as a reminder, though, of how badly we need an un-helmeted Sam, Quorra (& Clu!) and a Man-in-Black Flynn.