Having taken about a month off from ye olde weekly haul reportage rightly put me a bit behind - lets try to get caught up!
DST - Amazing Spider-Man: Battle-Damaged Spider-Man & Lizard
Bought this after opening the abysmal SDCC 2012 variant in order to do a comparison pic showing the pointlessness of that version, but am alas far too uninspired too do so. Spider-man has some minor "scrapes" added to his black deco but the detailing is fine enough they can easily be missed. He comes with interchangeable hair and mask pieces for his Peter head, which I think is great because that way it caters to both mask style preferences - mask-cap or painted head. Plus this allows for an unmasked Spider-Man to be on display, which is how he spends half the movie anyway... plus he gets the one-strap backpack from Peter Parker, but the shoulder peg has nowhere to go here. Fortunately the strap can be easily wedged under the head - a much appreciated accessory, though! Lizard is an interesting mix of old and new. I'm not crazy about the Lizard legs and tail because the sculpted scales versus smooth limbs is too conspicuous, though overall it works well enough to make me happy. Very weird, though, is that his claws are painted on instead of using the old hands with sculpted-on claws.
DST - Marvel Minimates: Avengers 4-Pack (Captain America, Hulk, Giant-Man, Kang)
The other Disney Store exclusive 4-pack is now mine as well. The first was a great addition to the collection with two re-releases offering pieces to create alternate looks and two exclusive figures. This one though doesn't fair nearly as well offering only one new villain and three heroes from the recent Series 44. Smart Hulk gets new "big body" pieces and looks sufficiently Hulk-y. He gets two weird chunks of concrete or rock (both the same sculpt) that he can do nothing with, nor does he have any pieces for an alternate look. Cap once again gets no alternate glove piece for the right hand, so it's fairly useless to put the shield on his back since the right hand with still be belted and pegged. Giant Man is the best of the non-exclusive inclusions because he comes with the Ant-Man helmet, blonde hair, a removable belt and three pairs of feet! So that's basically three figures in one - WELL DONE!!! Now that is what I'm talking about! Sadly though his face is printed a little too low so neither mask sits too "realistically" on him. Finally we get to the long-requested Kang which is an EXCELLENT execution of the classic villain, and my only complaint is that they put him in this otherwise not-too-appealing line-up. It feels like we're being held hostage a bit here and forced to buy figures we already have just to get one we need. Well, at least Giant Man is worth having multiples of, and Kang is a long-anticipated and pretty great.
DST - Marvel Minimates: Mirage & Magma
At last I complete my Toys R Us Series 13! Both of these characters, I presume (based on costumes) continue the "New Mutants" collection launched way back in 2010. I really, really like that they keep adding to, if not completing, teams - especially when those teams have group-consistent uniforms! Mirage is a neat figure with a new "two ponytails" hair piece, a bow, an arrow and a spear. Plus, she gets two belts - a team standard red one and a metallic blue chain of circles. I like the little bit of variation with the blue one! Magma is another translucent yellow figure and she comes with the ubiquitous fireball hand covers. She also gets a translucent yellow version of Nova's "fire hair" base... but has no way to connect to it... so... that's neat. Overall I'm happy with this set, Mirage is neat and the ability to flesh out teams/uniforms outweighs my unfamiliarity with these characters.
DST - Marvel vs Capcom 3: Dr. Doom & Wesker
This is one of the two sets available in both the Direct Market AND Toys R Us versions of Mvc3 series 3, and while I try not to buy such at TRU so that I can order a full set of the others online I made an exception here since this is a set worth having two of. Wesker is, I think, from Resident Evil and comes in an all shiny black outfit which is always a handy thing to have multiples of. He gets a handgun and a very, very cool new "swoosh" base (I don't get its relevance here) which will look great with Silver Surfer or, when translucent blue, a wave for Namor, Attuma, etc.! I really, really, really love the new dynamic bases they've been introducing this year! But the real star here is DOOOOM!!!!! I love Dr. Doom so very much and this is a great version of him - really nice bright colors and comic-accurate sculpts. However, he is sadly not perfect. His hood and cape are one solid piece, so no head posing here, and his wrap-around boots are thick enough to leave him with Minimate-Waddle. The gauntlets have the "elbow discs" sculpted on to them, which is neat in theory but means you can't really turn the wrist and bend the elbow. Still though it's fun figure and I'm certainly happy to have him!
DST - Marvel vs Capcom 3: Modok & Akuma
He is here! MODOK has landed, thus proving that any character can be successfully Minimate-ized!!! This guy is great and is surprisingly a full Minimate figure under the massive head/torso piece, which fits on to the seat, which in turn plugs onto the translucent exhaust blast! Stellar, stellar work! This set is fully worth it for him alone, but it does come with Akuma (the only interesting non-classic Street Fighter character, IMO). He comes with a new sculpt of the arm-blast effect which includes a peghole so that is can fit onto one of the flight stands. Thus, Akuma can "hadukken" while he stands. The set also includes a clear 'mate base, and I should also note that MODOK fits on the standard flight stand too!
DST - Marvel vs Capcom 3: Thor & Amaterasu
Thor is a fine re-do of his modern armor, this time sans full torso piece. He gets a new helmet/hair piece and waist cover but his chest armor is painted on the torso and he uses the recent version of Thor's cape. It's really a nice figure. Plus he gets not only Mjolnir but the new spinning-Mjolnir hand too! I don't know what the hell Amaterasu is or from whence it originates. She gets a flight stand that can plug into her belly while Thor gets a standard disk base. I appreciate the "out there"-ness of the Okami dog-goddess, and the fire is neat, but I just don't know what to make of that thing on the whole...
Hasbro - Avengers: Chitauri Cosmic Chariot
I gotta tell you - I am no fan of the Chitauri's designs in Avengers. They walk a thin line between "desperate to look alien" and "derivative of all other modern movie aliens" (hey giant space worm - I hated you less in Transformers 3). Buuuut, I'm a sucker for new toys and for armybuilders, and so... here we are. The figure is underwhelming as he lacks elbow and knee articulation, but he does have balljointed shoulders, hips, feet (finally!), swivels below the hips, and swivel neck. The "chariot" is a weird, weird thing which I just cannot figure out. Pretty much all the little "prongs" move with either ball-and-socket or swivel joints but nothing really works out so that he seems to naturally fit on board. I applaud them for the effort but the vehicle will end up in the box'o'bits and the figure will stand behind Loki.
Lego: Mini-Figure Series 8: Diver
I have been waiting for this figure for a long time and am thrilled that he's out! The helmet is a fantastic sculpt, only slightly too large, and it accommodates/includes a clear "window" in front of the face (in fact the lens is from the magnifying glass)! It even has a stud on the top so that one might make any number of connections! The front and back of the torso have great printing on them completing the look and he comes with a spear gun. I would have preferred a different accessory, but am not sure what... I'm just not crazy about the spear gun. He also gets little 1x1 dark gray flats which act as the weights for his boots - now that is some incredible attention to detail! The bricks can be a bit of a pain in terms of lining up edges and removing them off studs, but what're ya gonna do? This is a great figure and for me the star of Series 8! I must have MORE!!!!
Lego: Mini-Figure Series 8: Conquistador
You know me - all it needs to be is an armybuilder for me to be smitten but add to that my beloved Conquistador helm and I'm in love! Well... not "love" per se, but "lust" for sure. The helmet is a fantastic sculpt, complete with a peghole for a feather (though it must be said I'm not too crazy about that). He gets the standard Knight armor but with an elaborate tampo print on the front, with front-leg paint to match. Sadly no "alternate" deco on the torso but he does get a neat fencing foil as a weapon (which I believe is a new piece from the recently launched Monster Fighters range). This is a swell figure, but I must confess the longer I spend with him the more I see him as a "line drive" rather than a "home run." I still happily have four, though!
Lego - Lord of the Ring: Frodo Polybag
Here we get Frodo in his Hobbiton outfit from whence Gandalf first arrives in Fellowship of the Ring. At first I was pretty bummed by that choice but he does have two faces, happy and concerned, so it's nice to have a second one (this exact figure comes in the "Gandalf Arrives" set). Plus swap out his hands and head and he's good crowd fodder for the Castle Medieval Village! He gets a barrel on a stand plus a little stove. They are simple but fun builds and give you lots of little bricks, not to mention a frying pan and a sausage! I plan on buying one or two more for my Medieval Village because everything in here is sorely needed over there!
Lego - Super Heroes: Thor Polybag
I really just got this because I found it. It's nothing that exciting nor is it a moment that occurs on screen. The bricks at least have use in rock builds and Thor does have two expressions, but he does already come in two sets, so odds are you may already have two of him. The "cube" is a 1x1x1 clear brick, which makes sense for the comic, but really should be light translucent blue for the film. This is a forgettable set for any collector of the line but would be novel for any casual fan interested in Marvel Lego figures but not the high cost of the larger sets.