Last week I was describing the unpredictable nature of brick'n'mortar toy hunting and that very thing cropped up this week as well! I first went to a Toys R Us and found Dazzler, Enchantress and Sunfire from the latest X-themed Marvel Legends
wave series. I carried them around for awhile but them back ultimately because I'd never find a Cyclops, and Colossus is pretty rare too, so it'd probably just be easier/cheaper in the long run to find and buy a whole set. Well... I then went to a Target and Found Cyclops! And then another target and found Colossus! And then another Toys R Us and Shatterstar! But was by now too far away to justify going back to that original TRU, so... I could have made a full set in one day if I'd only just bought those damn figures right off the bat! So instead I just had to go looking around locally and piecemeal the set the old-fashioned way.
Hasbro: Marvel Legends - Polaris
My knowledge of this character begins and ends, effectively, with the old Toy Biz figure... so really she's just "Green Scarlet Witch" and subsequently my ignorant ass can't really tell her and Enchantress apart. The figure is fine and essentially all that we've come to expect from Marvel Legends. I do dig his "energy effect" accessories, and that herr gauntlets are separate pieces over the arms, but, AS ALWAYS the energy effects don't really clip on very securely. Aside from supporting the release of mutants and X-Characters, the main reason to buy her is for Warlock's build-a-figure part.
Hasbro: Marvel Legends - Colossus (Modern)
It is sooooo weird and conspicuous that in a series with so many classic costumes (I mean, disco Dazzler!) that they put Colossus is some unfamiliar new get-up. It looks good and makes for a nice toy, but... it's a costume I don't know and certainly don't have a place for in my collection. Hopefully a "classic" Colossus will be coming soon. Surprisingly, and cool-ly, he gets an alternate head with a bit longer hair and a beard - I've never even conceived of Colossus with a beard but it does seem to fit the character AND it's pretty cool that it's smooth metal just like his hair! I actually dig it a lot and it helps with the modern costume making this figure more unique, so I intended to display him with that head anyway - and that worked out fairly well since it turns out this figure is missing the eye paint on his non-beard head's right eye. No doubt that was why I was actually able to find him at retail, but thanks to the beardy head I can roll with it.
Hasbro: Marvel Legends - Cyclops (Jim Lee)
I love this costume sooooooo much! So I've been a'waitin' and a'hopin' they'd revisit and redo him in the new style - and he turned out almost great! I love the base body and proportions, and the colors are excellent. The head and bandolier are great sculpts and well painted. HOWEVER... all the strap-y things are free-floating pieces with nothing to hold them in place. I get it, but man is this incredibly annoying, especially with the boot ones which essentially refuse to stay in place. Come on, Hasbro... at the least tool up this body with some peg holes in it so it can be reused. All this "oh, it'll stay in place through the power of belief" crap is super annoying. I hate modifying the only copy of a figure I have, so now I even more eagerly want a second Scott so that I can glue his business in place. Other than the aggravation of the loose and falling straps, this is a great figure, though.
Hasbro: Marvel Legends - Shatterstar
Well shiver me timbers... whoever was expecting we'd see a Marvel Legends figure of this goofy bastard!? I've never read any of his comics, but I had the old ToyBiz figure in the 90s so I have a big soft spot for this nutty design. And, man, does Hasbro deserve all the kudos on this figure - not only did they make him, they made him look cool! The shoulder pads, headgear and hair are toned down a bit and under played which help sell him more as a badass. He comes with two swords - one a relatively standard one and the other his signature double-blade. The latter does have little bridges between the blades to better support them, and I'll certainly take that over warped swords. I really did not expect to like this figure as much as I ultimately do - he's quite cool.
Hasbro: Marvel Legends (Universe) - Shield-Wielding Heroes
I've more or less stopped buying the 4" Marvel figures, unless there are some really unique figures or characters I doubt we'll see in 6". I like this figure of Sam Wilson as Captain America, since it's a 100% new tooling, but I really kinda hate the Vance Astro costume. Buuuuut, Toys R Us has these on clearance for $13 bucks, and Vance can go with the classic Yondu figure, so... money spent. Vance is just as unremarkable as the design. Sam is not nearly as cool as he looks - like most of the money-conscious figures from Hasbro of late he has no wrist articulation and his wrists are shockingly thick, and that's even before one tries to clip on the shield which has a much narrow clip than this figures' wrist. So, basically he can only wield the shield sideways. Cool. It came with a comicbook too, but I haven't read it yet so I can speak to its value.
Lego: Captain America Civil War - Black Panther Pursuit
I actually picked this up a couple months back, but only now opened/built it mainly thanks to doing so with the Falcon/Crossbones set last week. Much like that set, this is one only to get for a single mini-figure. Cap and the Winter Soldier are both identical to the big set with the Quinjet and Giant-Man, so odds are if you have any interest in Civil War Legos then that's the one set you're getting. So... bully for this set. We a decent jeep build and another motorcycle but the star attraction is the "Panther Plane," which inaccurately depicts that jet seen on screen for less than 30 seconds, so... whoopdeedoo. BUT, then, we have a Black Panther minifigure - and THAT is a must-have for this movie/collection. Black Panther and Spider-Man were, BY FAR, the best things about Civil War so I couldn't pass him up here. The printing on him is excellent and he comes with a new piece that, like Darth Maul's horns, pops on the top of the head to supply the panther ears for the suit. They do seem a bit more purpose-specific than I was initially expected (I was thinking they might be cool to use for a Batman or Catwoman custom, or something) but work fine. And the jet is pretty neat looking and a fun build, so it's not a total wash... I just wish that at least one of the of Mini-Figs was unique to this set to boost the perceived value.
Lego: Collectible Mini-Figures - Series 17
Seems like it's been awhile since the CMF line has been exciting, but the Rocket Girl and Retro Sci-Fi dude are just plain awesome! The rocket suit is weird, though, and the ball on the top and the fins at the bottom don't match to any other Lego joints, which seems like a hugely wasted opportunity. The Captain Retro dude is just flat amazing! I kinda wish they'd used red instead of yellow for his highlights, but I really really really hope they make more in this style! He gets a new raygun accessory too. The rest are just kind of fun - the elf princess, olde timey strongman, hot dog vendor (tempted to get the Friend Hot Dog set for this dude, now) and the shark surfboard are quite novel. The corn suit is fun but not AS fun as previous costumes. Plus the dwarf and the inexplicably secret (his images is blacked out in all advertising and even the pamphlet in the packs), Highwayman are fun continuations of previous lines. Overall, it's a good but not great set; though there are some real highlights to be sure!
Lego: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 - Milano Polybag
This was a promotional thing at The Lego Store (free with $35 purchase) so it worked out nicely that this was going on when I was doing my Series 17 CMFs hunting! This is a great, fun little build that replicates the look of the Milano in mini scale pretty well. The balljointed wings on either side are nice but it's the bright shades of blue and orange than really make the set pop. It's kind of a bummer there isn't a "mid scale" line for ships like this, but it is too "big" to fit the polybag pricepoint and too small work as a set (probably; I mean they could pack it with some other similarly sized ships or something).
Mattel: DC Multiverse - Damian Wayne Robin
I was quite surprised to see this fella looking back at me on the Toys R Us shelf! I haven't even seen any of the regular figures for the King Shark series yet. While I generally hate most everything about Damian Wayne, I will confess that this costume is colorful enough to tickle my fancy (though I STILL really want them to release a proper Tim Drake Robin figure!!!). He is, though, apparently just a slight reworking of the MattyCollector Damian Wayne figure, but with a new head, maybe cape, and two little kneepads that just clip on to his knees. Yup, they are separate pieces that are open in the back and just clip on... oh well, at least they stay on a bit better than Cyclops' straps. Damian comes with a katana, because the easiest way to prove a Hot New Character is a Badass is to lean into ninja iconography. Oooooh, DC! He also gets a Court of Owls mask which actually does fit pretty well on his face. He also comes with a giant hammerhead version of King Shark's head as an alternate piece for the massive BAF. This head has a hinged lower jaw, and the sculpt and paint are pretty good on the whole thing. It is kind of a bummer that you'd have to buy two sets of figures in order to display both heads, but fortunately Mattel's line isn't nearly as compelling or reliable as Marvel Legends, so it'll be tough enough to convince myself to get the full series once - but Daddy does NEED that King Shark!
Mattel: Wonder Woman - Menalippe
Heavens to betsy, does WB/DC not like Mattel. First they convinced them to make that dumb bat monster from a single shot in Batman v. Superman and not Doomsday (not like I "want" a figure of that goofy mess, but he was sort of the point of the movie and would be nice to have all the other figures fighting... and plus he appeared in more than one shot of the film!) and now they force a TOTALLY inaccurate Ares on to Mattel (and Lego), and then cut Menalippe out of the movie! I mean, I'm just guessing here, because based on her "just in the background in a couple shots, and has one line (her name isn't even mentioned!)" appearance in Wonder Woman, I can't begin to imagine how or why this character got a figure! I really, really would prefer Robin Wright's character (so hopefully she'll show up in a future Multiverse series) or even Doctor Poison! But... here we are. Like the other figures, she's a neat enough design and figure. The particularly interesting thing is that she has a peghole in her right fist for the arrow to plug in to in order to be held. An interesting solution, which probably would be more appealing if it wasn't for the limited range of Mattel articulation making it tougher than it should be to get the arrow and bow to line up. She also gets a pair of film-inaccurate flaming swords for Ares. Interestingly, the digital sculpts are identical, but from the hilt up the flames are mirror-images, which bizarrely means these are actually two separate tools/molds! Oh, Mattel... I don't get you. Why bother double tooling if the sculpt is essentially the same? Especially when you can pretty safely bet that WB/DC will be tinkering with changing the CGI designs up till the last minute.
NECA: Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 - Choptop (Retro Cloth Figure)
Why the hell is it so hard to see Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2!? Nowhere has it streaming and though Shout! Factory has it on DVD... it's out of stock! Whatever - I'm sure someday, somehow I'll finally see it. After picking up the TCM cloth Leatherface at C2E2 it got me thinking of my love of that movie and that, screw it, I should collect the sequel stuff since it's unlikely to ever get proper figures again (and in retrospect I should have bought the Mezco figures on the same principle, but alas...). This is a fine figure, pretty standard for NECA's take on the format, with pretty good tailoring (the patches on the jeans are surprisingly effective vinyl "stickers," or whatever they're called). The head is good, but not great and due to a dark colored paint wipe to bring out the details the paint quality can vary pretty widely. The only thing that bugs me about the figure are the necklaces, which are plastic and cast flat so they don't hang naturally. He comes with a ton of accessories - a coathanger, lighter, wig, glasses, hammer and working straight-razor (though it can't open wider than 90° and the hinge is pretty weak so gravity is the only thing that can keep it open). I'm pleased to have him, but, of course, HAVE to track down the TCM2 Leatherface now, as well!
Playmobil: NHL - San Jose Sharks Goalie
I got loosely into Hockey back when McFarlane was doing NHL figures and collected figures based off of the jerseys I liked the most, and among the top of that echelon was the San Jose Sharks, so I was quite pleased to see these finally were released. I got these half out of nostalgia for the old "SportsPicks" figures and half out of wanting support Playmobil at brick-and-mortar retail. The uniform is captured well and the figure comes with a removable goalie mask, two goalie gloves and a goalie stick. I don't know the actual players at all so I have no idea if this is supposed to be a specific person, but thanks to the removable hair, one could always customize their choice player fairly easily. He does come with a sticker sheet so you can also pick your desired played number for the back of the jersey. It's a neat figure, but it's certainly not worth the $7.99 pricetag.
Playmobil: NHL - San Jose Sharks Player
The player is much the same as the Goalie but also includes a puck (and the sticker sheet has a little Sharks logo to apply to it). What is surprising and disappointing is that the hip joint is not articulated here and the skates are different sculpts, so he'll really only stand (or at least "look right") when not plugged into the base. The hockey stick has a peg on the back which connects to a tube on the base which is pulled back then "launched" by a tab so that the figure can "actually" hit the puck. It's a novel play feature, but it double the cost of the figure and halves standard-ness... so, I can't say I'm much of a fan. It's nice to have these just as a memento of an undoubtedly shortlived portion of Playmobil's history.