Last week I talked about the toys and collectibles I picked while abroad in Europe for two weeks. Well, now I'm playing a hint of catch-up with the haul from the weekend before that trip. Toys R Us was having a 25% Off sale on all Playmobil - so I was more than happy to oblige myself.
Hasbro - G.I. Joe Combat Heroes: Duke & Cobra Commander
For $1.98 I needed to get the leaders of the respective teams, Joes and Cobra. This Duke is totally useless, Cobra Commander has a neat, toyetic costume in the film and it translates "funly" to the Heroes style, but that doesn't change the fact they gave a character with nothing but cool, signature costumes something wholly ridiculous to wear. This set also represents the best and worst of this generation's actors - Meathead Tatum and J.G.L. (Let's pause on that for a moment... how the hell is J.G.L. 1) in this trainwreck of a movie [I don't care what you think yo, it's a godawful travesty of film] and 2) why is he Cobra Commander!?!? Does not compute!)
Hasbro - Marvel Legends: Winter Soldier & Black Widow
I really got this set for two reasons, it was the only one from this series I could actually find and I don't have a Black Widow in the gray jumpsuit, so that justifies both figures. She actually turned out remarkably well (I don't care for the bellybutton though, I get that it's an omini-use body but I just see the navel and think of how it takes the tightness of the suit from "sexy & form-fitting" to "too tight to comfortably wear" real fast). Both of her heads came out quite well too boot, so I may actually pick up the standard version if I ever see it - lord knows the ToyBiz Black Widow is a mega eyesore. Winter Solider is a character I know nothing about and don't care to know anything about. What's stupider than killing a comicbook character? Resurrecting a character that everyone has agreed upon is capital-D Dead. Bucky got a neat Cap suit but there is no purpose to him being around.
Playmobil - African Safari: Lions with Skeleton
One can never have enough PlaymoLions. Why? So many Gladiators and Castle Prisoners for them to slaughter!!! Plus, PlaymoBones are always stellar diorama additions.
Playmobil - African Safari: Ranger's Vehicle & Rhino
Rhinocerii are by far my favorite land animal so the promise of a PlaymoRhino demanded I own this set. I must confess I'm not sure if this is a classic (i.e. '80s/90s) sculpt or a new one, but it certainly does the trick for me. Swivels at the four legs and a hinged neck, the horns are cast separately in "bone" colored plastic rather than being painted - one of the things about the overall Playmobil aesthetic I really love. I wasn't crazy about owning this set as I just wanted the Rhino and have no interest in a jeep (my collection is almost exclusively "historical" or "fantastical") but I must confess it really impressed me and is much cooler than I expected. Still not really sure what I'll do with it, but it's a really cool toy - definitely something I would have loved as kid. But.... Ranger!? WTF!? Who are you kidding - that's a motherflippin poacher!!! Surly expression, coiled rope, holstered handgun and a rifle? Poacher. He's a poacher. I own an action figure of a poacher. What the hell Playmobil? Why will you make a blantant murdering criminal, but when it comes to a medieval executioner he's got a red hood? I will buy your Poacher, sirs and/or madams, but you owe me a legitimate executioner for my medieval village square - and he better come with a gallows, too!
Playmobil - African Safari: Zebras, Gazelle & Cheetah
Well, the name pretty much says it all! All it doesn't mention is 60% of why I bought this set (outside of the 20% off sale) - the scenery! I love me some cool diorama pieces and Playmobil really excels at this. I can also trace my obsession with "toy water" to a watering hole for cattle set Playmobil did back in the day. Such a beautiful thing I had never seen, and ever since if I see water in translucent plastic form my desire for that product grows exponentially! What's really cool about the new African theme is that there are a handful of these stream/river pieces and they can strung together to make a long river! Huzzah! The animals are pretty cool too, and good for the Playmo-nagerie.
Playmobil - Giant Dragon with LED Fire
Playmobil has had a really sordid past with dragons, but with the new theme focusing on them they've finally eradicated that offensively godawful Chicken Dragon and given us a range of pretty solid designs in the PlaymoAesthetic. This guy is basically the king of the batch and well worth his $20 pricetag. Swivels at the hips and shoulders, a hinge at the base of the neck and a hinged upper jaw/face. The wings are sort of hinge-and-socket joints that approximate balljoints. They work really well, but to get the range of motion one really wants they could use a swivel on the armature. It's interesting, too, the wings are two separate pieces, the arm and the wing. The latter is cast in a slightly softer plastic. Also included is a rider who is pretty neat looking, he comes with an overly elaborate axe, dagger and a really cool lance. I wish the lance was longer, but seriously... jousting f$@%ing dragons!?!?!?!? Yes please! As the name suggests, the dragon does include a light feature - a red LED in his nostrils that pulsates in glowing when illuminated. It's visible through both nostrils and casts light down into the mouth as well. The button for the light is a simple "cylinder" right in the middle of the head, but oddly enough it doesn't really ruin the look of the head; it reads as just a little horn or protuberance. He's about 14" from nose to tail with a wingspan of around 18". So, as I say, well worth the money! I really hope they do a re-issue in the "good guy" green and yellow colors! Oh, I should also mention the dragon looks just fine without the saddle on too, another nice attention to detail as things like that are generally not meant to be removable.
Playmobil - Pirates: Pirate Captain
I had never seen this guy in Toys R Us before, so not only was he high on my radar, he was a must-have while on sale! Talk about great diorama pieces! We have a book, a quill and well, a chart with stand, a rum bottle, a sextant, a compass and a different kind of compass! Rock on, Playmobil! Aside from the head and hat this guy is a British officer it would appear, which makes it a weird and interesting set. It's kind of cool to imagine a pillaging pirate stealing the ransacked captain's uniform, but in terms of my collection it's just kind of confusing. Maybe down the road I'll look into doing a head swap. Regardless, though, this is a great range of must have accessories for the Pirate theme!
Those Playmobile toys look fantastic! I kinda wish I was into 'em. I remember when Playmobile used to be exclusively sold at stores with names like "Discovery Station" or "Learning Express" and only sold overpriced wooden blocks and these. Now they're at TRU and are affordable. Good times. They certainly beat the crap out of Fisher Price's Little People.
That Black Widow is beautiful. I need to find that 2 pack
If I'd been able to find this variant before the normal version, I'd have gladly gotten it instead. But I'm not about to double-dip when the change, overall, is so minor...
Yeah, mainstream playboil is terrific - i just wish that TRU would stop backing the more modern things like Circus, etc. But that will only change when Playobil goes back to its roots and stops doing the goofy Knights and Pirates stuff (based on the 2011 German catalog I have it looks like that time is much sooner than I expected).
And also, yeah - I'm surprised at how good Black Widow turned out, she's definitely my favorite female figure since Hasbro took on the license. Or... well, ever since I hated Toybiz's Marvel Legends. Sure I bought them all, but the figures looked... not stellar
Aww, you should give Jimmy a chance. This is one that I think turned out pretty well.
I love the Playmobil stuff, especially as a parent. It's pleasantly generic, so there's no storyline tied to them so my daughter gets to decide on her own what should happen. As a toy fan, I have found they're well built and offer really diverse themes that can interest anyone.
ha ha- that Playmobil stuff is Great! Good toys...
well Fries Against, looks like your answer is yes- really 😀
Hell f@#%ing yes, Playmobil. Just awesome toys. And c'mon... who else is going to include toy bones for your toy lions to gnaw on?
I have to agree that bringing back Bucky was a bad idea, in a recent history of bad ideas at Marvel. Didn't anyone around there get the memo?... "ONLY BUCKY STAYS DEAD!!!" Unfortunately comics today seem to have no regard for the characters or good storytelling. Now it's all just about making a quick buck with shock and awe and the next "Big Event" of the moment. As a result there is no longer any love or respect for the long and rich history of excellence that was once the "House of Ideas".
Decently nice figure though.
But doesn't the fact that the idea gave us some of the best Captain America stories in years forgive it? I mean, sure "let's bring back Bucky" by itself is a bad idea, but "let's bring back Bucky because I have a really great idea for why he'd have an impact in the modern day" is a far different beast.
It helps that the guy who brought him back is the same one who's using him; for contrast, think of the way Jason Todd returned...
Keeping a character dead is a good rule, but it shouldn't be exception-proof. If you have a great idea to bring a character back, then do it. I mean, was anyone really sitting around thinking, "Well, as long as Bucky's still dead the world still make sense"?
Maybe 90% of comic-writers can't pull off a convincing return-from-the-dead story, but Brubaker sure did. It was pretty darn cool (and ballsy) to reveal that Bucky was actually (a.) a cold-blooded killer who did the wetwork for goody-two-shoes Captain America and (b.) a brainwashed Communist hitman. No complaints there.