Toy Review- Super7 Masters of the Universe Classics Collector’s Choice Wave 1

 

 

Super7 is a company out of San Francisco, California that specializes in pop culture products.  They are most famous for producing merchandise based on licensed items like Aliens, Street Fighter, Universal Monster and more.  They have recently obtained the license for Masters of the Universe from Mattel, producing new figures in the original 5″ style, as well as reimagined “retro” figures in the lines of classic Kenner-style 3 3/4″ figures (i.e. the original Star Wars figures) from the 70s and 80s.  They haven’t been the only company churning out new He-Man figures in the past 9 years, though.

In 2009, Mattel (the company that owns the Masters of the Universe characters) started to sell figures based on the classic Masters of the Universe characters through a subscription on its website, mattycollector.com.  Their goal was to release a updated version of all the classic MOTU toys by the end of the line’s run.  They preceded to do so, pacing them out over 6 years, interspersed with characters from other related media as well as some new characters or some based on unused concept art.  The line officially came to an end in 2015,but it continued as two separate lines; Collector’s Choice, continuing the Classics line with characters from outside the original toy line; and Club Grayskull, releasing new versions of classic characters, but done to closely resemble their look in the original Filmation cartoon.  Both lines had six figures in the initial run but shortly before San Diego Comic Con 2016 (where upcoming figures were usually showcased) Mattel announced it was closing down Mattycollector and awarding the license to produce Master of the Universe Classics lines to Super7.

That was in 2016 and fans of the line waited to see what Super7 was going to offer them. First, Super7 produced a line called Masters of the Universe Classics Ultimates, which were re-releases of some of the older figures, but with additional weapons and alternate heads that were added as bonuses with other figures or with alternate versions of the same character during the original run.  These were released in 2017, with fans liking them for the most part, but there were some concerns with the plastic being too hard or issues swapping the heads.  There were also some Power Con convention exclusives (three repaints, three new characters) that suffered alternately from stiff  or loose joints.  Then they offered the new wave of Collector’s Choice and Club Grayskull figures in May of last year.  The original delivery day was Sept of 2017, then November, then the new year.  Quality control issues cropped up and Super7 was determined to release the best version of the characters they could.  Finally, they shipped in Feb 18 and I got a set of the Collector’s Choice (because I prefer the Classics design than the less detailed Filmation look.)IMG_1879

Super7 first set of The Collector’s Choice line consists of four figures.  Unlike the Mattycollecter subscription mode, in which you commit to 13 or so figures while only seeing the first three, Super7 was upfront on the four figures being offered.  The packaging is the same as the original Classic line, with the yellow sky and green/grey bricks decoration the packaging.  This is so they can fit in with the collection of those who keep them mint or card (not my style).  The back is similar to those of the original Classics line, with cross sell art showing the characters from this set as well as the four from Club Grayskull.  Unlike the other Classic lines, there is some new art on the side of the card, showing the packages figure.  It also has a bio card (missing from the Collector’s Choice wave from Mattel.)  Depending on your own “head canon,” or if you only go with what was written in official publications or cartoons, you might enjoy these bios or dismiss them.  There is nothing too shocking that hasn’t been mentioned before, like Man-At-Arms turning into a Snakeman or the Unnamed One, the big bad behind the Snakemen, being a evil sorcerer from Orko’s race (all in previous bios/mini-comics)

IMG_1893

IMG_1894
Both “facts” mentioned above are in Fang-Or’s bio.

Now lets look at the figures:  First up is Hawke

IMG_1880

Hawke is an Avionian, a race of flying Simian led by her brother and Heroic Warrior Stratos.  Obviously, Hawke got the looks in the family because she is less “ape-y” than her brother, and I guess all female Avonians are like this (that’s a helmet on her head apparently.)  She is based on her Filmation appearance as Stratos was the only Avonian in the original toy line.  She also appeared in the 2002 version and, despite a different character design, also appeared more like a normal woman than her brother.

IMG_1884

The figure articulation is fairly typical of figures in this size and is mostly the same on all female figures in this line.  The head is on a ball joint allowing standard movement and is removable (more on that later).  The shoulder joins are also on ball joints and can move up  and down and up to the sides.  The elbow is a single joint with about a 90 degree bend and the wrist rotate and can bend in and out, with is a new feature seem mostly on the Club Grayskull figures.  Legs are ball jointed at the hips, there is a boot cut swivel at the top of her boots, the knee are single jointed and the ankles can bend and has some pivot.  The only different joint is the torso swivel  mid chest underneath her breasts.  Most female figures have the torso cut at the waist.  The joints on my figure were good, with none of them being too tight or loose.IMG_1885

She comes with three accessories:  A sword (as seem in the picture of Hawke above), a rather large gun (a smoke screen gun, probably from the cartoon) and an extra blonde head,  This head belongs to Delora, Stratos wife (though some sources say sister.  Maybe it’s both?).  People with the forethought (and extra cash) to order two of her could have two separate characters to display, if they choose to.  Both heads are pretty much the same, with the hair color being the only difference.

IMG_1886

Next up is a character from one of the original pack in mini-comics, Lodar

IMG_1883

In the story titled “Slave City”, Lodar was the ruthless leader of an army of Kolbolds that capture people and brought back to their underground city.  He-Man was captured by them and forced to fight in the arena, but overcame his opponent then took on Lodar himself.  Lodar stood toe to toe with He-Man exchanging blows but also cast magic blasts which He-Man turned back on him.  Lodar was one of many characters featured in the mini-comics that never got a figure.

IMG_1890

Lodar is made from the standard figure buck seen throughout the line.  The head is new as is the chest piece, but with Beast-Man’s arm pads converted into shoulder pads. The rest of him is reused molds but they recreate his look from the comic nicely.  His main weapon is a back mace, see before in the weapons included with Castle Grayskull (but in silver).  Articulation is similar to Hawke, but with an ab crunch and waist swivel.  He also has the extra wrist articulation.

IMG_1891

His other accessory is a set of chains.  This enables you to recreate scenes from the story and have Lodar have He-Man chained up.

IMG_1892
Like so.

The third figures is this guy, Quakke

IMG_1881

Hailing from the often forgotten 1989-1990 The New Adventures of He-Man cartoon and toy line, Quakke is a member of the Evil Mutants, a faction led by Skeletor trying to conquer known space and take over the planet Primus, protected by He-Man and the Galactic Protectors.  Yes, it is He-Man in space..  Quakke uses his “Grabatron Meteormace” (I can’t make this stuff up) to create tremors to defeat his opponents.

IMG_1881

The figure’s design is faithful to the design of his original figure (from what I’ve see on Google) and has a futuristic look to it.  He is different from the usual barbarian look of most figures, but remember, even the original toys has futuristic vehicles and characters like Roboto.  His armour has a lot of wire sculpted into it with a seismograph screen built in.  His helmet is cracked and it look like even his face is slightly lopsided like the helmet.  His articulation is standard, with his ab crunch hindered by the armour overtop of it.  He also lacks the extra wrist articulation, which would have been handy for holding his oversized weapon.

IMG_1888

His Grabatron Metoermace is his only weapon but it comes in two parts.  The first part is his staff, with is a gun metal grey and fits in his right hand with the top part resting in the palm of his left hand.  The other part is a meteor itself, which fits in (and easily pops out) of the grabbing part of the staff.  The meteor even splits open, revealing  a mechanical interior.

IMG_1889

Lastly, we have the newest character in this set, the Snakeman, Fang-Or.

IMG_1882

Appearing as a background character in a large battle scene in one of the more recent mini-comics produced for the Classics line, Fang-Or is the Snakemen’s mechanical expert.  Apparently he was able to learn quickly under the tutelage of the transformed Man-At Arms.  He is a well designed figure with  new armour and belt pieces on a Snakeman body.  The Head is a gruesome sight, with his mouth wide open and his pointy fangs on display. HIs extra head features retracted fangs.  His articulation is in line with what we’ve seen, but his armour does not hinder his ab crunch, but he lacks the extra wrist joint.

IMG_1895

He has a few accessories that are all well done.  He has a wicked looking sword, which fits easily in his right hand.  He also comes with a winged snake pet, which, while neat looking really has no place to go on him, unless you carefully balance it on Fang-Or.  Finally, being a mechanic, he comes with tools.  The wrench and hammer all have snake designs incorporated into the tools,  The screwdriver does not, but it is just a screwdriver. They are all panted gold with brown handles.

IMG_1896
Fang-Or’s accessories.  Missing is the screwdriver, because it fell out of the package and I didn’t notice it until later.
IMG_1897
You can get his pet snake to balance on his shoulders, if you are careful.

 

Overall, this is a great initial set from Super7.  The figures look great  I didn’t have joints that were too loose or tight and my paint apps were spotless.  The weakest figure, in my opinion is Hawke, because of the minimal detail on her.  That can be chalked up to her design, since it was based on the Filmation version.  Hawke could have been in either line (Collector’s Choice or Club Grayskull and not be too out of place.  The best was Fang-Or, despite being the newest character and not having a previously known backstory.  He is still an awesome looking figure and we can always use more Snakemen to fill King Hiss’ ranks.

Both Master of the Universe sets (Collector’s Choice and Club Grayskull) waves were preorder only, which means you can only find these figures on reseller websites or eBay.  Expect to pay extra for those figures.  The preorder for the second wave ended mid-March, with a expected delivery date of late Fall.  A third line is planned but will no be announced until the summer at the earliest and not available for preorder until some time after the announcement.

IMG_1887
Why aren’t the Avionian women as hairy as the men? Almost like they use the same logic as the WoW races (males ugly, females hot.)

This Review is for entertainment purposes only.  I have not received any payment for this review. All opinions are mine and any pictures taken are for review purposes only.

Advertisements

Anime Review: A Certain Magical Index (Series)

Hello.  Once again I dive into a topic that I like, but I really have little knowledge about:  anime.  I look into various series that I have watched, either recently or a while ago, and give my take on them.  I will also look into aspect that arise from cultural differences from Japan and the West, as well as any “WTF” content that may be in the anime.

A Certain Magical Index is a series based on a Japanese light novel of the same name.  The anime was produced by J.C. Staff and released by NBC/Universal Japan (formerly Genon.)  There are two seasons of 24 episodes each along with a movie continuation.  It is licensed in North America by Funimation is available subtitled on Cruncyroll and dubbed on Funimation Now streaming services.

The story is set in a fiction Japanese city called Academy City.  It is a place were students with special powers (called ESPers) go to live, go to school and learn how to best use their power.  In this universe, special abilities like, telepathy, teleportation and electromagnetism are real and scientifically explainable.  Students are tested to see if they have the potential to be an ESPer.  If they do, Academy city trains them and assigns them levels, with the highest being Level 5.  Some, however, have the potential but never tap into those powers.  They are Level 0.  Our protagonist, Touma Kamijo, is one of them.

Touma
Touma is well, meaning, likeable but just can’t catch a break.

Touma Kamijo is a typical anime high schooler, in the regards that bad and embarrassing things tend to happen to him.  Constantly late, forgetting his homework or embarrassing himself in front of the opposite sex, you’d almost think that bad luck was his super power.  Despite being labeled as a Level 0, Touma actually has a powerful ability; with his right hand, he can cancel out any super power.  Whether it touching someone using an ability, touching an object, or cancelling out an attack, he can disrupt the powers of other ESPers.  Unfortunately it cannot cancel out his own dumb luck, and that’s how he runs into Index.

Index
Index may be mean to Touma from time to time, but she is helpful and she likes him very much.

 

Index is a young nun from the English Puritan Church.  In her head she has 103,000 magical tomes, called the Index Liborium Prohibitorum, giving her access to all sorts of magical abilities.  When she mets Touma, she is on the run from fellow wizards from the Church.  Touma finds out that magic is real, that Academy City is at odds with the various magical Churches, and that his right hand can disrupt magic as it does the “scientific” ESPer abilities.  Touma takes Index in, reluctantly becoming her guardian and becoming more involved in the intrigue between the magic community and Academy City.

Throughout both seasons, Touma deals with the various churches. Caught in a war between the English Church and the Roman Orthodox Church, he fights off bloodthirsty nuns and various magical agents.  He also prevents various magical attacks against Academy City.  That’s not to say Academy City does not have its dark side.  In one story arc, he finds himself caught up in an experiment using one Level 5 ESPer, Accelerator, killing off clones of another Level 5 to reach the next level.  With the help of the girl who was cloned, Mikoto Misaka, they try to stop the experiment and save the clones, who are not the hollow, emotionless dolls that the experimenters believe them to be.  It is definitely an actioned-packed anime.

ACMI
Mikoto Misaka is a Level 5 “Railgun” and is one of the more interesting supporting character. Think she’ll get a spin-off?

The subtitled and dubbed version are equally good.  The translated subtitles are easy to follow and won’t leave you confused.  The dub is well done too, with the voice actors portraying the characters well.  There is no time in which you think the voice doesn’t sound right.  I think that the Crunchyroll version is a bit censored, which is often the case on that service.

As it is an anime set in Japan, it follows that the setting would reflect normal Japanese life as much as possible.  While the city is a bit futuristic and the buildings look like more modern cities,  there are still some uniquely Japanese aspects.  Bath houses (not seedy ones), vending machine serving hot drinks in a can and Japanese  shrines are all present.  The school runs 5 and a half days like in Japan and they go to school until the end of July.  None of this is jarring as you know it’s a Japanese show.

In this anime, however, the Western churches are sued as adversarial, in not downright evil organizations.  Given the setting of the anime having magic and super science, the Churches are  placed on the magic side.  They have different, yet similar names to their real world counterparts .  Although the English church is called the Puritan Church, they have nuns, which the real Puritan do not have (or magic for that matter, but, I’m sure you got that) so it is more similar to the Anglican Church, in that respect.  The Roman Orthodox Church is based on the Roman Catholic Church, an organization with its own secrets.  I am not sure if the changes to the name were done for the anime proper, or just the subtitled and dubbed versions.  In any case, some with religious sensitivities may be offended.

The WTF factor: Low-Medium As I said before, Toma has bad like, and that sometimes translates into getting in embarrassing moments with the opposite sex.  Whether it’s bursting in on Index changing, running face first into the boson of a Busty villain or inadvertently getting a peak up the skirt of a Misaka clone, these are fan service-y moments that you find in anime.  Add to that is the fact all the girls he runs into seem to develop a crush on him.  This includes Index, who, although her age is 15, looks younger.  There is some partial nudity, however and such scenes are short and played for humour.

bewbs
This is as fan servicey as it gets.

A Certain Magical Index was one of those animes that I hear of but never really looked into it.  I had a passing knowledge of its spin-off, “A Certain Scientific Railgun,” but only due to some merchandise that I saw.  Overall, I am glad I gave this one a chance. All 48 episodes and the movie are available on anime streaming services Crunchyroll and Funimation Now.

This Review is for entertainment purposes only.  I have not received any payment for this review. All opinions are mine and any pictures taken are for review purposes only.

 

 

 

Subscription Box Review: Legion of Collectors Green Lantern Corps

We are back, with what is. sadly, the last box in the Funko DC Legion of Collectors Box.  The final box features the emerald protectors of all  3600 Sectors of the Universe, the Green Lantern Corps.  So, don’t be a “poozer” and read on as we look into the box!.

IMG_1866

The cover features the silhouette of Green Lantern Hal Jordan on the box.  The Legion of Collectors logo is there, as always.  Moving on.

IMG_1867

The liner features some Silver-Age artwork, featuring Kilowog, Hal Jordan and Sinestro in his classic outfit and in his Green Lantern duds.  Once again, it looks nice.

IMG_1868

No patch or pin this time.  The t-shirt is this black Green Lantern shirt, featuring Hal, John Stewart and Guy Gardner flying out front, with other Green Lanterns hanging in the background.  The art gives me an early 90’s vibe, I’d say around the Green Lantern: Mosaic era (mostly because there is no Kyle Rayner.)  It also looks like Hal has grey in his hard, as he did in the comics at that time.  It’s a good shirt and the not pop style is appreciated.

IMG_1869

We also get this lantern-shaped stress toy.  It is fairly squeezeable and can be used as you worry over how you’ll get your DC pop vinyl fix without the subscription.

IMG_1870

IMG_1871

Next, we get this set of Green Lantern Pint-Sized heroes.  We get these ridiculously cute version  of main GL Hal Jordan and his arch-nemesis Sinestro.  Sinestro is even in his modern Sinestro/Yellow Lantern uniform.  These always give be a Fisher-Price Little People vibe, which, to be honest, is a bit weird.  Still, more nic-nacs for your shelf.

IMG_1872

For the last Pops in this subscription, we get a three pack!  We get three Green Lanterns; Ch’p, Guy Gardner, and Kilowog.  Each figure is a different sculpt and size, which gives you three unique Green Lantern Pops for your collection.  I was personally hoping for a Ch’p pop and Funko came through.  You got to love a sentient chipmunks wielding a power ring!

IMG_1873

This box is what a  Green Lantern Corp box should be.  With so many different, unique characters showing up in the comics over 60 years, the only way they do the box wrong was to only focus on Hal Jordan and Sinestro.  Both Guy Gardner and Kilowog have their fans and Ch’p was too of a unique character to not make into a Pop.  The shirt, stress toy and Pint-Sized heroes were all great, but the Pops make the box, as it should be.

Sadly, this is the last box in the Legion of Collectors subscription.  You can go to https://legionofcollectors.com/  to find out more, but they haven’t really said what the next step is.  Those who had a subscription can log in and buy this or any other box that they have left in stock.  Supplies are limited, though.

This Review is for entertainment purposes only.  I have not received anything from Funko, DC, or Warner Bros for doing this review.  The item was purchased with my own funds.  All opinions are mine and any pictures taken are for review purposes only.

IMG_1876

IMG_1875

IMG_1874

 

 

 

 

Anime Review: Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (aka Star Blazers 2199)

Note:  Hi.  I am trying something new to increase my number of posts and get more practice writing.  With a lot of streaming services out there offering anime, I have been watching quite a bit of it.  I seen shows that I haven’t seen in years, ones that I’ve heard of but never got around to watch and some that are new to me.  So, I will feature some of the ones I have watched and do a review going over the art style, storyline, dub (if it is dubbed) and overall feel.  I will also look at what I call the WTF factor; aspect of the anime that may raise and eyebrow or cause you to ask “WTF did I just watch?”  Our first subject is a remake of an anime that I have known about for years.

d9ca6060742eea3ed04ea37dda6795901510172280_full

Space Battleship Yamato 2199 (or Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199) is an 2012 Sci-Fi anime series by AIC and Xebec studios.  It is based on the original 1974 T.V. anime series Space Battleship Yamato, which was dubbed and edited for the West and renamed Star Blazers.  The series is 26 episodes long.  The series is dubbed by Funimation and is currently being serialized on their streaming service, Funimation Now, which new episodes being released on Thursday.  It is also on Crunchyroll with in Japanese with English Subtitles, with the series being released at the same rate as Funimation.

The series takes place in the year 2199.  The Earth is at war with a and advanced militaristic race called the Gamilons.  They had destroyed all of Earth defences and, using radioactive planet bombs, destroyed the surface of the earth, driving the survivors underground.  But not all is lost.  A message from the distant planet Iscandar offers help to restore the planet to life.  Included in the message was the plans for a ship that can traverse the great distance between the planets and fight off the Gamilons.  But the UN could only build one ship in time and, for reasons, build it to resemble and ancient Japanese battleship from World War 2, the Yamato.

With the ship build, its crew set out on the perilous journey through intergalactic space.  The crew includes Captain Okita, a man who puts his mission first before his own health; Tactical Officer Susumu Kodai,  a brash young pilot whose brother served under Okita and in whose memory he joins the mission; and  radio and sensor operator Yuki Mori, a woman missing her past.  Together with te rest of the crew they set out on the perilous journey to Iscandar.  Time is not on their side as they have to travel 168, 000 light years to Iscandar and back in only one year, or else the Earth will die.

Star Blazers (as the English dubbed is called, like with the original series) is a space opera, science fiction anime, similar to series like Robotech and the Mobile Suit Gundam franchise.  The series has a serious tone, with the threat of war and it’s consequences being a central theme.  The ship gets damaged, machine fail, space fighters run out of ammo and not everyone makes it back alive (though mostly faceless extras.)  The Yamato does have its all-powerful McGuffin plot device, the wave motion engine, which powers the ship and gives her the ability to fend of waves on Gamilon ships and make the long journey through space.

8-niimi-yamato-2199
Lt Kaoru Niimi is one of the female crew members added to the series.

The art style is excellent.  It looks modern, but is still harken back to the original anime’s designs.  The original series was directed by manga artist Leiji Matsumoto, famous for the Space Pirate Captain Harlock series, so you can see how the ship design for the Yamato (a WW2 battleship) influenced the ship design in Harlock (17th century pirate ship…in space!)  The remake keeps that design, updating so that the ship is larger and only made to look like the Yamato as camouflaged for before it was launched.  The crew of the Yamato is more varied than the original, with a third of the crew being female (Yuki was the only female crew member in the original) with most with speaking roles being all new characters, with only the character of Akira Yamamoto  being gender-bent into a woman in this version.  The Gamilons, the Nazi-esque enemies in the series also were updated, with only those with blue skin being the “pure , true Gamilons, with the others of different skin tones and features, bring races subservient to the Gamilons but still as loyal.

nubles-space-battleship-yamato-2199-2012-episode-8-720p-10-bit-aac-mkv_snapshot_03-49_2013-05-28_23-51-04
Pure Gamilons are blue-skinned.

The writing also gives us a better look at the Gamilons.  There are more scenes showing their leader Dessler, interacting with his subordinates.  While most of them are arrogant and looking to please Lord Dessler to advance their own careers, we see some of them in a more sympathetic light.  Some are fathers and husbands, some make the hard choice between duty and family.  Some even express their understanding on why the Earth and Gamilons are at war, causing some of the Yamato crew to realize Earth is not without blood on their hands.  But over all, the Gamilons are still a conquering race, driven by their own self-importance to consider the cost of their actions.

Still there are a lot of similarities’ with the original series.  In fact, there are episodes that are pretty much retellings of ones from the original series.  The fourth episode, “Grave Marker on an Icefield” follows a similar plot to the original series’ “Space Destroyer Yukikaze Sleeps in the Ice Field” or ‘Paladin Rest in a vast icefield” in the Starblazers version.  The major differences are the inclusion of the female medic, Makoto Harada on the mission (the original only had Kodai, Mori and the robot Analyzer) and the introduction of the robot Gamilon troops (one of which plays a big part in a later, orignal episode.  Truthfully, it has been over 35 years since I’ve seen an episode of the original Starblazers, so this is all new to me again, but is seems there is a good balance between honouring the original and telling a new story.

Yamato Girls_ jpg
The uniforms for the female crew members tend to flatter their form. Apparently, in the Medical wing, pants are optional.

WTF Factor: Low.  Now, with cartoons imported from Japan, there will be some cultural differences.  Different aspect of their culture, like holidays and beliefs will pop up and that is to be expected.  Space battleship Yamato 2199 doesn’t really have this issue (at least not with what I’ve seen so far as of episode 14).  Despite the addition of more females to the cast there has not been much of a romantic sub, those both Yamamoto and Mori showing interest in Kodai.  And there hasn’t been much in the way of fan service in this version (the original had a plot of Analyzer being in love with Yuki Mor, flipping her skirt and even confessing his love (this was cut from the Star Blazers version).  While there is a scene with Yamamoto and Yuki Mori in the communal bath (again, a common thing in Japanese culture), any nudity is avoided and the most salacious thing we get is a bit of lower side boob from Yuki.  If anything can be called fan service, it is that all the female characters wear body suits.  While the male uniforms have tunics and pants, the women are all in tight, form-fitting body suits with the only exceptions being Makoto’s nurse uniform with a skirt (or is it a long tunic?) and stockings and Yamamoto’s bomber jacket and flight suit.  Still this is not played up for fan service, with the only exception I can think of is a shot of Yuki descending a ladder behind Kodai in episode 14 (and I think she was flirting with him.)

Yuki's Ass
Ass shot!

Space Battleship Yamato 2199 is a great science fiction anime that hold up well for a Western audience.  Older folks like me who watch the series will get a kic out of this new version.  For those new to the series, I think you will find it an intriguing anime with a memorable storyline.  The series is done in Japan, but there is already a sequel retelling the second season of the original being streamed in Japan.  Here is hoping we see that sometime in the near future.

Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199 is currently on the Funimation and Crunchyroll streaming services with 14 episodes released and new ones released every Thursday.

1z3qm9i
Yet the front side being open is okay?

Review: Mezco One:12 Collective Suicide Squad Harley Quinn Collectable Figure

There are a lot of companies out there that produce high-end collectable figures in various scales, the most popular being 1:6 scale, or around 12 Inches.  But these figures are a far cry from the Holiday edition Barbies and the Bob Hope G.I. Joes you might has see at a Toys’R’Us over the years.  Companies like Dragon, Sideshow and Hoy Toys produced beautifully designed figures with cloth costumes and detail accessories that capture the look and feel of the comic or movie character they are producing.  But all this attention to detail is costly and the lower production runs means these figures cost around $200 (Cdn) or more and can only be found at comic/pop culture stores or online.

Mezco Toys, trying to produce an alternative at a lower cost yet with the same quality, has come up with the One:12 Collective.  It is a line of 1:12 scale (around six inches) of figures based on various pop culture properties, from comic books to TV and film.  Like their larger 1:6 counterparts, the sculpt are highly detailed, capturing the look and feel of the character it is based on.  They also have cloth outfits, tailored for the character so that it looks straight from the source material.  Starting off in 2016, they have produced over a dozen of different characters, but they have all been larger, male characters.  Now Mezco Toys has produced the first female figure in the One:12 Collective line; Harley Quinn from Suicide Squad.

IMG_1841

The One:12 Collective Suicide Squad: Haley Quinn figure is based on the character in 2016’s Suicide Squad movie, as played by Margot Robbie.  How you feel about that depends on your own taste, but I liked the look.  The figures comes in a box with a red slip case featuring the characters name, the movie logo and the One:12 collective logo.  On the back we see the contents of the box and various action shots of the figure  The sides of the cover has the “Q” of the Suicide Squad logo (and “Q” for “Quinn”).

IMG_1844

Removing the sleeve and you get the first look at the figure.  Harley is displayed with her alternate heads, hands and weapons. In behind you can see the base of the stand with the Suicide Squad logo on it. When you open that up, you will find the arm for the stand and the jacket that goes with the figure.

IMG_1845

With the figure in hand, see seem so… small.  Having never had a One:12 Collective figure before, I have no way to compare her with the male figures in this line.  I am a bit.. obsessed with figures I display together be in (or at least close) to scale.  The figure is about 6 inches, which in the 1:12 scale is 6 feet scaled.  Too tall to have be next to a 6 inch Batman (who would be 6’3″ or so).  Margot Robbie is about 5’5″ in real life.  Add that she was wearing 4-inch heels on those Adidas pumps in her Harley outfit, it would bring her to 5’9″.  She’d pair well with figures in the 7 inch scale, I guess, like older DC Direct ones or Mattel’s  DC Multiverse Dark Knight Returns figures.

IMG_1846

The figure is great though  The outfit looks great and close to the movie, but without the wear and tear shown in the movie (no rips).  The shorts fit well and she even has actual fishnet stockings, which are sewn around the legs.  There is a noticeable seam in the back, but it doesn’t distract from the overall aesthetic of the figure.  They even got her tattoos on her, from her face, arm and legs to the ones on her stomach and lower back (if you move up her shirt.)  There is even a red bra painted on that shows through the shirt, like in the movie.  As for the likeness, well, I spend hours on the internet, looking up facts about Ms. Robbie (including the size of the heels on those Adidas shoes) and  painstakingly going over pictures after picture of her in costume and I can say it is a very good likeness.  The butt could be better, but it is a awesome likeness for the scale.

harley-robbie-butt
Research.

 

IMG_1847

As for her accessories, she comes with three different heads;  a closed mouth smiling, and open mouth laughing and a blowing bubblegum head.  She has five interchangeable hands; three right hands (trigger finger, gripping hand for the bat and an open hand) and two left (open and gripping.).  She comes with her baseball bat from the movie as well as a gun with the shoulder harness holster.  She also comes with two wrist bands, one saying “Yes” and the other “Sir,” and two spiked bracelet, which can fall off easy and are a bit small.  Lastly there is the coat, with looks like it did in the movie, from the colour scheme to the having “Property of the Joker” on the back.  It fits quite well, though be sure to remove the bracelets and wrist band before you put it on her.

IMG_1850

IMG_1865
The jacket fits well enough.

 

IMG_1863
The design is authentic to the movie.

 

As it comes with a stand and a posing post, this figue is mean to be displayed and posed.  She has good articulation, with the head being on a post with a ball joint.  She can look up, down and side to side with ease.  The heads are easy to swap and I never felt like I was going to break it when I swapped heads.  The arms are also ball-jointed at the shoulder and you get a good range of motion even with the cloths goods in the way.  The elbow is, sadly, single jointed and hidden by the shirt and you can rotate the arm at the elbow.  The hands attach at the wrist, also ball jointed and, though the post is small, they are easy to exchange and stay on well.  There is a diaphragm joint beneath the breast and articulation at the waist, though she can’t turn side to side much.  The waist joint is the most noticeable, with her low riding hot pants.  She is articulated where the legs and crotch meet, with each leg being able to move forward a fair bit but no much back.  Her legs can spread a part a fair bit, but not to a split.  With the fishnets being two pieces around each leg, it does not hinder the movement.  The knees are single jointed and can bend to almost a 90 degree angle and the ankles joints allow side to side pivot, left and right turning but little forward and back movement.

IMG_1853
Use the stand and posing arm for dynamic displays

 

This figure is definitely a high quality figure.  Compared to the DC Multiverse Suicide Squad Harley Quinn, this figure stand out in quality and attention to detail.  The faces, body and outfit really capture the likeness of Margot Robbie playing Harley in that movie.  But like the 1:6 Scale figures, the quality comes at a higher price point.  This figure retails for about $89.00 US (I paid $108 Canadian from a Canadian distributer) so it is a pretty big purchase for a 1:6 scale figure (mass market 6 inch figure retail for about $30 CDN)  But if you have already bought a One:12 Collective figure, you know the quality that is put in it.  If you haven’t and you pick up this figure, you’ll know soon enough.

IMG_1854
Heads and hands swap easily.

 

IMG_1855
Comparing the Mezco Harley Quinn (center) with the Mattel versions.  I think a One:12 version of the one in the dress would be sweet.

 

The One:12 Collective Suicide Squad Harley Quinn figure is out now.  You can check your local comic, toy and hobby shop for availability, or you can order online from various resellers.  I got mine from Canuckables.ca, a Canadian source for toys and collectables.  This is not a plug;  I just saying where I bought it from.  For more information on this line and upcoming and current figures, you could check out www.mezcotoys.com.

This Review is for entertainment purposes only.  I have not received anything from Mezco Toys, Canuckables.ca, DC Entertainment, Warner Bros or anybody else for doing this review.  The item was purchased with my own funds.  All opinions are mine and any pictures taken are for review purposes only.

IMG_1858

IMG_1860

IMG_1862
Puddin’!

Subscription Box Review- DC Legion of Collectors: Teen Titans

It’s my first post of 2018, and we are starting off with the latest DC Legion of Collectors  box by Funko.  This month’s theme is the Teen Titans, based off of the “New” Teen Titans comics that ran from 1980 to 1996.  Will this box rate a “Boo Yah!” from Cyborg?  Let’s take a look!

For those unfamiliar with the Teen Titan’s history, here is a little back story.  Originally conceived as a team made up of the sidekicks of various Justice League members, the Teen Titans featured Robin, Kid Flash, Speedy (Green Arrow’s sidekick), Aqualad and Wonder Girl. The group had two series in the 60’s and 70’s (plus a cartoon that omitted Robin) and was mildly successful.  But in the 70’s, the trend was to age up the sidekicks:  Robin and Kid Flash went to college, Speedy became a heroin junkie.  Aqualad… got wet, and Wonder Girl went to comic book limbo as she never really fit into the Wonder Woman comics at the time.

Then, in 1980, the series was revived.  Guided by the creative Team of Marv Wolfman and George Perez, the series reunited Robin, Wonder Girl and Kid Flash along with Beast Boy (then called Changeling) from Doom Patrol.  It also introduced three new characters:  Cyborg, Starfire and Raven, all who are would be familiar to those who watch the recent cartoon.  The new series was called “The New Teen Titans” because, well, it was new at the time, though most of the characters were pushing 20, so, not teens.  The series saw many of the other Titans returned (Speedy got off the smack, Aqualad was…still wet) and show the evolution of two of its characters: Robin, looking to get out of Batman’s shadow, adopted the name Nightwing, and Kid Flash took over as the Flash after Barry Allen died (he got better 25+ years later), leaving the team and eventually joining the Justice League.  The comic was a hit and even had a crossover with Marvel’s #1 team at the time, the X-Men.

IMG_1806

But enough history, let’s look at the box.  The lid features the silhouette of Nightwing in his 1980’s costume.  I had always called it his disco costume, not only because of the large collar, but also because he was written by Marv Wolfman, which made me think of the 70’s DJ, Wolfman Jack (side note, I have see pictures of Marv and he is not nearly as hairy as my 10 year old self though he’d be.).  Beside, he was the writer; George Perez probably had more influence in the design.

IMG_1807

The lining has artwork featuring the Titan members most would be familiar with (i.e. from the cartoon)  The art seems to resemble George Perez’s work.  I could be wrong.

IMG_1808

First out of the box is the T-Shirt.  There are two variants this month and both feature Beast Boy.  Once has him changing from a tiger, the other (i.e. this one) has him changing from a eagle.  I personally like the Changeling name better than Beast Boy, especially since he was more mature over the course of  the New Teen Titans series.

IMG_1811

There is no flap any more and we only get a patch this time.  Cyborg is featured on the patch in his 80’s design.  It is good that this character has evolved over the years and now is part of the Justice League franchise.

IMG_1813

We get a comic this time, too.  It is a copy of The New Teen Titans #1 from 1980.  IT features a new cover by artist Phil Jimenez, the original story from 1980 and a couple of Who’s Who in the DC Universe pages from 1986 featuring the team and the Titans Tower.  The cover is really nice and the story, well old, still holds up.

IMG_1809

Next we get…figures!  I really like the Funko figures we have been getting and I have said that I wanted more.  There are four different figures available and you get two of them per box:  Cyborg and Starfire are featured here, but Raven and (disco) Nightwing are the other two.  Funko said there may be a way to order the figures you are missing, and I hope these turn up at comic shops and EB Games along with the other original members.

IMG_1815

Finally, we get to the Pop!  It is Nightwing, in all his pop-collared glory!  In the comics, Dick Grayson, looking to distance himself from Batman (and wear big boy pants), decided to give up the Robin identity (which Bruce fills really quick!) and takes the name Nightwing, based on a hero he met/heard about (depending on the story) who protect the streets of the bottle City of Kandor..  Dick used that name exclusively since them, only dropping it to take over as Batman for a few months in the early 90’s and from 2009-2011 (Note.  Kandor did have a modern Nightwing for a while when Power Girl went there for a bit.)

IMG_1816

And that is it for the box.  I really enjoyed this one as we got a lot of cool stuff and figures!  The figures have been improving over the years with these ones slightly larger than the Suicide Squad ones.  They also have ball-jointed arms (Starfire even has a ball-jointed head!)  The Golden-Age Superman figure from last April also had ball-jointed arms, but I never noticed until I compared him to Starfire! And we get a Pop of Nightwing! This is a good buy for both old and new Teen Titans fans.

The next DC Legion of Collectors box ships in March 2018 and will feature the Green Lantern Corps.  I am hoping for a Ch’p pop, Funko If you wish to get the next box, you can subscribe at https://legionofcollectors.com/ .  The deadline is 1 March 2018.  By subscribing, you can order boxes from previous months like this one. (supplies are limited.)

This Review is for entertainment purposes only.  I have not received anything from Funko, DC, or Warner Bros for doing this review.  The item was purchased with my own funds.  All opinions are mine and any pictures taken are for review purposes only.

IMG_1814
Interior shot of the comic

 

 

IMG_1818
All the Legion of Collector Funko action figure thus far.  They are getting better.

 

 

IMG_1819
Classic Starfire and Cyborg next to a modern Nightwing (from Mattel)

Movie Review: Justice League

Note:  Yes, this is incredibly late.  I know that.

Justice League is the latest movie in the DC Extended Universe, which started with Man of Steel.  It stars Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Henry Cavil Ezra Miller, Jason Momoa and Ray Fisher, amongst others.  It was directed by Zack Snyder, with an assist from Joss Whedon.  It came out in theatres on 17 Nov 17 in North America.

Justice League takes place after the events of Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice, with Superman dead and Batman and Wonder Woman looking for the three super beings that were being watched by Lex Luthor,  They suspect a new threat is  coming, and they will need to work together to stop it.

The threat comes in the form of Steppenwolf, a New God from the planet Apokolips, who, with his army of Parademons, intend to conquer the word and turn it in to a hellish landscape like their home world.  This was not Steppenwolf’s first time trying to conquer earth:  thousands of years ago, an alliance of humans, Atlanteans, gods, Amazons and aliens (Green Lanterns) forced him back.  They managed to capture his doomsday weapon and separated it into three parts called Mother Boxes.  The human champions, the Atlanteans, and the Amazons were all  given a box to hide.  The one that the human champions took had been lost, however, only to be discovered in the present, which drew Steppenwolf back to Earth.

Now. Batman, Wonder Woman and three untested heroes; Arthur Curry, the Aquaman; Barry Allen, The Flash; and Victor Stone, Cyborg must face a god and his army from beyond.  Steppenwolf doesn’t see to care, because with ‘No Kryptonians, no Lanterns,” he believes the world will fall.  Can the heroes stop him?  Or will they need to find away to bring back their fallen protector?

This movie has been the subject of a lot of debate. With Warner Bros trying to fast track a “Shared Universe” for its DC Entertainment superheroes as was done for Marvel they seem to want to jam a lot in these movies.  While I believe Man of Steel was necessarily darker to give us a Superman who is not perfect, Batman v Superman was consumed with its darkness, trying to mimic comics from twenty to thirty years ago without the shared history between the characters that fueled those stories.  Wonder Woman was the highlight of that movie and she wasn’t even in the title.  Her solo movie proved that there is room for levity in these “serious comic book movies” (as had been shown in the Marvel movies.)  They have seemed to have learnt that lesson.

The acting was overall good.  Ben Affleck, despite was most want to believe, is a good Batman.  He has some pretty fully interactions with Aquaman when they meet and is less murder-y with the crooks of Gotham (the Parademons dont’ count as that is an invasion) and Affleck plays the weariness of years of crime fighting well.  I want to see more Bat-Fleck in a solo outing to get that history.  Gal Gadot is perfect as Wonder Woman.  SHe represents Wonder Woman in a different way than in the past, playing up the warrior/Amazon side of the character.  And that accent…mmm.  Lynda Carter is still my #1 Wonder Woman, but the more I see Gal, the more I like her in the role.

Out of the rest of the cast, Jason Momoa is the favorite..  His Aquaman is a bad ass, echoing his comic book series during the mid to late 90’s.  The character of Aquaman is frequently the butt of jokes but Jason Momoa’s version may change that, if his solo film is handed right.  Ezra Miller’s flash is much different from what the character has been protrayed as in the comics (and the Flash TV series), being a computer/tech whiz and a fast talker (with fits, in a way)  His Flash suit is great, though and he grew on me as character.  CYborg, played by Ray Wise seemed to have the less character development, but needed it the most.  They touched upon how his father used a Mother Box to save his life, and his reluctance to team up, but he needs to be fleshed out.  Let’s not forget about Henry Cavil who plays Superman who… is dead.  Yes.  Best portrayal of a corpse since Weekend at Bernie’s?

Supporting cast wise, we have Amy Adams back as Lois Lane, Diane Lane as Ma Kent, and Connie Nielson as Hippolyta.  J.K. Simmons portrays Commisioner Gordan, making it two comic book supporting characters under his belt (first being J. Jonah Jameson in the Rami Spider-Man trilogy), and Jeremy Irons comes back as Alfred Pennyworth, who seems a bit less sick of Bruce’s shit.  Steppenwolf is played by Ciarán Hinds, who used motion capture to portray the villain.  Steppenwolf’s look is based on his more recent incarnation, which, admittedly is better than the green outfit he wore originally.  I prefer the redesign Jack Kirby did for the Super Powers toy line, myself.

I found the movie good.  I think is it a step in the right direction that the DCEU must take, as long as the suits don’t mess it up trying to reproduce Marvel’s success without the effort and output.  We still have the issue of Eisenburg as Lex Luthor (who they yet to get right in the movies) but perhaps they could recast?  Make the Luthor we saw Alexander Luthor Junior?.  We at least have Aquaman to look forward to and I hope the positive changes for this franchise follows that movie in its production.

Still, while DC‘s products do better on the small screen (Batman:TAS is better than any Marvel made for TV cartoon and the Arrowverse is doing well compared to Agents of Shield) Marvel is the king of the box office.  Warner Bros can change this, but they got to put in the work

 

Justice League is in theatres.

3/5

nn0z87jlp6dz