Jan 31, 2012

Jacob Black no longer has Corn Syrup in his veins...

Taylor "Sharkboy/Quiluete furry-pedo" Lautner is no longer Stretch Armstrong.
He may be out, but the movie is coming... The tentative Release date for Stretch Armstrong is 4/11/14...
I still don't see how this Stretch Armstrong movie will work... unless they Hollywoodize the heck out of it just like Battleship...

Well he kinda has an arch-enemy:

Stretch Armstrong also has an "Evil Twin" Wretch Armstrong... and a dog named Fetch Armstrong... (sadly I couldn't find any videos of them...) but this is starting to look like another Inspector Gadget... (Which could be one of Matthew Broderick's Worst Performances ever...)

Go Go bad movie trailer!

Now, with a Character like this who is pretty much a blank slate I expect a lot of "pseudo-depth" from Hollywood to adapt it to the "tried but true" formula of a "superhero movie"... Or basically They'll rip-off Plastic Man as much as they can legally... and I bet that a lot of people are DYING to see a Plastic Man movie... Sadly Warner only believes in Bats and Supes for DC movies... They tried Green Lantern and we know how much that sucked...

Jan 30, 2012

Matthew Broderick's Day Off and car ads...

Huh? Well here's the Spiritual sequel to Ferris Bueller's Day Off!

Uh, what the heck is this!? An Ad for a Honda CR-V?
Am I supposed to believe that Mr. Broderick cruises around in a Honda CR-V to do what his character did in Ferris Bueller's Day Off on a 1961 Ferrari 250 GT!? Oh Puh-Lease!
Then again it seems that there is some sort of trend of Celebrity Ego-Stroking Car Commercials...

Luckily Other Car Makers have decided to make car ads exciting or fun, in stead of ego-stroking projects for celebrities. Now, don't get me wrong, but I enjoy a nice celebrity-backed commercial (like the Norton Antivirus ads with Dolph Lundgren, or The Hoff) but Jennifer Lopez cruising on a FIAT in The Bronx is highly unlikely... At Least The Matthew Broderick Bueller Tribute had a bit of charm in it.

You have to admit that the widdle Vader ad was kinda funny and cute!

At 0:08 I saw a Doc from GI Joe!
At 0:09 I saw Storm Shadow!!
At 0:15 I saw a couple of Mr. Potato heads!!
At 0:19 I saw Twilight Sparkle!!
Is this a car ad!? or is this a Secret Hasbro Toy Commercial!?
Wait! What's this!? At 0:41 I spy a NECA Lara Croft!?
You know what I DON'T See!? Mattel Toys... I Wonder Why...

Now, these ads may not make me want to buy a new car immediately, I'm sure as HELL that it won't be a FIAT or a CR-V...

Speaking of buying cars you may need insurance!!

Sonic's got you covered... Wonder when Mario will start pimping Geico or All-State...

Jan 29, 2012

Odds and ends: Jan 29 2012 Ponies Make Everything Better.

Everything is not what it seems... But Selena Gomez is sporting some "Seemingly controversial" streaks of paint in her hair that are reminiscent of...

I'm not saying that Selena Gomez looks like a Pony, but that Combination of Colors IS Similar to Twilight Sparkle's Mane...

Speaking of Ponies, A One Pony Rampage through the Streets of Modesto, California would sound ridiculous... But it happened. The cops had to corner him and stuff as it tried to run away... I think it was a GTA 1-Star chase for that Little Pony... I wonder what his Letter to Celestia would be like...

A Serbian Purple Calf may be one step closer for us to get ACTUAL MY LITTLE PONIES!!
Purple Calf... Purple Pony... We're getting there...

On other Pony related news... It's Official! DERPY WHOOVES IS CANON!!

And she speaks!!

I think that will be enough Ponies for now...

Jan 24, 2012

It came from the Toychest: "Lazy" Repaint Edition

Battleground Evil Lyn has arrived and here is her review:
Original Evil Lyn Review... Ignore the Hordak reissue part...
That's what I'd do if I was REALLY Lazy... got to finish Wind Raider Review...
But this Repaint brings a LOT of new stuff to the ballgame...

I've already mentioned WHY I dislike her reuse of the Teela Dress... I might go on a little bit about it again.
My biggest beef with the figure is that this figure is pretty much a "placeholder" figure, until Mattel and the 4 Horsemen are able to deliver a true "200X Inspired" Evil Lyn. It honestly looks like a "Filmation Evil Lyn" in 200X Colors. Is she Filmation or is she 200X? NONE! Because Mattel CAN do those alternate versions of Evil Lyn because she is popular enough to revisit her over and over and over... (Yet Mattel calls this line a very, very, tiny, tiny line... I'm confused!)

Before I go into the figure itself I want to discuss her bio a bit.

Battleground Evil-Lyn® Bio

Real Name: Evelyn Morgan Powers™

Cast aside by her secret husband after his transformation, Evil-Lyn® sent their infant son into the future and plotted to overthrow Skeletor® by releasing his enemies from their dimensional prisons. In a series of miscalculations, she helped free the Snake Men™, Hordak® and Gygor™ - increasing her adversaries threefold! After Randor and Miro returned from Despondos™, the Three Towers rose and Evil-Lyn® found herself again allied with Skeletor® during the Second Ultimate Battleground. At the end, defeated and stripped of her powers by the new Sorceress® of Grayskull™, Evil-Lyn® used the Cosmic Key™ and the Power of Central Tower to return to the future to find a new life with her long lost child - The Son of Skeletor®!

Alright: I've made emphasis on the bigger shockers.
She's married to Keldor/Skeletor. She lost her powers thanks to Sorceress Teela (cause Teela's mom was poisoned by King Hssss and possibly died) and went back to the future to find a new life with her child: The Son of Skeletor!! You just had a mental image of Skeletor "boning" Evil Lyn... If not, I envy you...
In 2 Bios Scott "Toyguru" Neitlich has gotten rid of the 3 females of the original line! Damn! (and we haven't even gotten the Sorceress yet...)

Alright: Let's see what the BaGEL brings to the game:
Long 200X Inspired Staff: Check!
Short Vintage Evil Lyn Staff: NOPE!
Screech with Stand and Armor: NOPE!
200X Knife: Check!
Removable Orb Top: Check!
So she has 4 accessories less than Normal Evil Lyn... She must have something to make her special...
Brand new Unhelmeted head! Duh! It's ON THE FIGURE!
She also has an alternate Orb top... IT GLOWS IN THE DARK!!
And last but not least: She has a CAPE! (I believe it's Filmation inspired, but don't quote me on that.)
So overall she has 1 less accessory than Normal Evil Lyn.
While Not an accessory she brings new arms to the game! You can rotate her bracers...
Also, not a new thing but she has Catra's left hand in a non-gummy plastic...
Other than that, she's pretty much Normal Evil Lyn.

Now let's get to the whole rating thing... 1 equals abominable crap and 5 equals awesomeness!


It's the same as normal Evil Lyn but the new arms are adding 2 extra points of articulation. (While a virtually pointless PoA, it makes the figure a LOT cooler!) 4.0

Paint and Sculpt:
We've seen most of the sculpt before on Teela, Evil Lyn, The Green Goddess... you get the idea... Her headdress and dress have a bit of sloppy paintjob. On the other hand her face paintjob (on both heads) is a LOT better than the original Evil Lyn. 4.0


As stated Above, BaGEL has 1 less accessory than normal Evil Lyn, but the accessories being different enough helps her. Sadly my non-GITD orb top seemed to be mangled in shipping. Other than that they're pretty cool... 4.0


Battleground Evil Lyn gets a solid 4.0 but if she had been a bit MORE than a 200X colors repaint of "Filmation Evil Lyn", she would've fared better...

Jan 22, 2012

The Mighty Spector: The rant.

What the heck is a Mighty Spector and what does it do?
The Mighty Spector is a Brand New Masters of The Universe Classics Figure made for the 30th Anniversary of the line. This line consists of: The Fearless Photog (The winner of the Original Create a Character Contest from the 80s) Draego-Man (a Super cool Kick-ass Humanoid Dragon made by the 4 Horsemen... Yes the same 4 Horsemen that made Bunny Ultron in ML and the Rest of the MOTU Classics line!), A Character designed by Mattel's Design team (Most likely by Terry Higuchi), a Character designed by Geoff Johns of DC Comics (Who has NOTHING to do with MOTU's 30 year-old history... That's a rant for another day), the Winner of the NEW Create a Character Contest (that is void in Puerto Rico and anywhere else outside the Continental 48 States)

and last but not least: The Mighty Spector
Oops! Wrong Spector!

THIS is the Spector I'm looking for!
Why does the name Spector sound so familiar... Where have I heard of him before?
You came back from that link to the past? Well, if so you're beginning to understand The Mighty Spector! You are still confused? Well, here's what I know so far!
The Mighty Spector is Lt. Spector. Yes, the Palace Guard with the face of Scott "Toyguru" Neitlich is The Mighty Spector.

Logistics song by do4m
I even made a song about him!! PINKIE PIE STYLE!!
Also The Tagline for TMS is Heroic Master of Time Travel.

I think that my Spider-Sense is Tingling...
Here's the thing: Mr. Neitlich is pretty much the author of the MOTUC Narrative, The Mighty Spector is an Avatar of himself inserted into the MOTU Mythology... This has all the signs of something AWFUL!! Heck Even The Mighty Spector's initials are similar to THE MARY SUE!
(Which Spector kinda reeks of...)
Does anyone remember a popular story about a Mary Sue who gains god-like powers?
If anyone is thinking about Apple Holding you just won a NO PRIZE!!

Spector has the potential of Out-Mary Sue-ing Bella Swan. THAT Scares me. Now if Spector is played as a bumbling sidekick who is forced to fix the mistakes he originally caused in the timeline (a little bit of self-depreciating humor would do wonders for Spector). Making him a super important key player in the storyline would be the Biggest mistake ever made.

As stated my biggest fear is Spector's place in the storyline...

Now I shall talk about his design.
Two Words: Liefeldian Nightmare!
Yes he is very similar to Deadpool... Even his creator is aware of it. To be fair he made it when he was a kid... Most of us, would have not made up a super cool design at a young age because we are not professional designers. On Spector's case it's rather obvious that it is NOT a professional design... Aside that it looks like it was made by Rob Liefeld.
I'm not saying this to "attack" Mr. Neitlich, but having an entire design team at his disposal and not use it to its full capacity kinda sucks, since the customer is the one who ends up paying for it.

Now design-wise Spector has a couple of problems:
He looks too Generic. The whole "Faceless" Mask gives him an army builder vibe.
His chest armor with oversized holster for gun looks Liefeldian and the color combination of Blue-ish purple AND Yellow screams X-Men!!
His name and Tagline do not define his appearance or action feature:
Fisto, he has a big fist.
Stinkor, he Stinks
Zodac: Cosmic Enforcer... His helmet looks like a Sci-Fi astronaut/Alien kinda cosmic-like
Flipshot: He flips
Optikk: He's got an eyeball for a head...
Webstor: He's a Spider, man!
The Fearless Photog: He's got a camera theme.
The Mighty Spector: Heroic Master of Time Travel. His name evokes a ghost. His appearance evokes a spy/superhero (Deadpool, Snake Eyes)

Then there's the Ace of spades on his chest... What does it have to do with a time traveler? The Spade is a symbol of death. Does this mean that Lt. Toyguru is an assassin now? Sadly the spade is there cause the young Scott Neitlich thought it would be cool to have a spade as an insignia all those years ago.
The only addition he got from design seems to be an iCosmic Key Nano on his left wrist... With a Lightsabre and Laser Whip apps.

Now looking at Spector visually, I would have done TWO Simple things to him that would keep the design virtually the same, BUT it would have given him some cohesion between name, title AND Look!

Thing #1: Changing the Insignia slightly by drawing the outline of a smaller spade near the bottom of the main spade so it looked like two clock hands pointing at 12:00
Thing #2: Give him a Non-Obtrusive Action Feature that could help the Spectre-sounding name be linked to the Time Travel aspect of his title that is reinforced by the Hourhand spades. The Action Feature would have been color-changing like the SDCC version of Orko.

He can "Fade in and out of the timeline"with his Action Feature; has a clock inspired theme WHILE sticking VERY close to Scott's design and connects with the MOTU tradition that links name, look, and action feature.

If it had been up to me I would have played the "Spector/Spectre" thing by giving him a hood and a tattered cape.

Now with that said, Visually he just needed a little "Oomph!" Or in the words of Rainbow Dash: It needs to be 20% Cooler!

His role, Storywise is where the biggest fear lies. SO far all we know about him is based on what Scott Neitlich has said about the character. Hopefully the Bio will ease the fear about Spector replacing He-Man as the main character. He has the potential to rock and the potential to suck! While everything is pointing towards him sucking, I still believe in his potential to be awesome... Kinda like the Twilight Saga... Cool Idea, Horrible execution.

Jan 21, 2012

Uh, I think that I may NEED TP for my Bunghole now...

I just saw the most awesome/somewhat creepiest thing I've ever seen!
Realistic versions of Beavis and Butt-Head
All I've got to say is: I'd LOVE to see a Live Action Beavis AND Butt-Head movie using these Prosthetic pieces!
Picture The Great Cornholio!!
Mike Judge should voice Mr. Anderson, cause they'll probably choose other VA's for B&BH...

Since I'm talking about B&BH... STOP IT WITH THE JERSEY SHORE CLIPS!! I still despise the show and every clip reminds me how bad the show is... Before any one of you points your fingers at me and mention Ponies, take a look at what you're defending... If you defend Snooki by attacking ponies, I pity you... Ponies spread love and tolerance... Jersey Shore... Awful stereotypes, awful behavior and promoting the Tanned Punching Bag...

Now I wish that B&BH kept making fun out of the OTHER non-Jersey Shore shows!

Jan 16, 2012

It came from the Toy Chest: Raiding the Eternian Winds

The very first Masters of the Universe Classics Vehicle Review for:
The Wind Raider. I should start by saying thanks to the folks at The Great Rebellion for the Wind Raider... This is my first Wind Raider EVER!! so, that makes the review a bit harder for me... Can't stop playing with the sucker...

The Artwork for the Wind Raider was made by Artist Rudy Obrero, who worked on some of the 80s Masters of the Universe Artwork... Smart move by Mattel...

To start off, check out the Puny box it comes in... Now, don't be deceived by the small box... This thing is huge once you assemble it... Honestly, that box is packed to the brim with Wind Raider goodness! but before opening it up, check out that awesome art... Brings back that Vintage Masters of the Universe feeling... If only the rest of the toyline had that Vintage feeling with the red meteor and the blue background... but that's a story for another day.
OK after assembly, this vehicle is HUGE! I'd say bigger than Swiftwind... And this is just the Toy based One-Seater version... Now imagine if Mattel had made the Filmation FOUR-Seater version of the Wind Raider...

Pinkie Pie is Riding the Wind Raider: Where is your god now?

Well, what can I say about it... NO STICKERS!! I hate having to put stickers on toys... (Especially if they already have HALF the Stickers on...)
The wings have some articulation (They can rotate and may help for some poses.) The rudder on the back also can move. It has hatches on the turbines that you can open (for displays with MAA doing the whole Duncan is a Mechanic/Inventor/Weapons Master thing he does) The anchor on the Raider is Fireable by pushing one button disguised as a giant rivet. The Hood-Ornament looking thing is how you retract the short rope.
The Wind Raider also comes with a stand. Obviously, you pose the wind Raider on it... It helps create the illusion that it is flying or hovering. It's about One MOTUC Figure Tall (OK if you decapitate the figure and removed it's neck) The stand has the capacity of tilting (cause the peg you put the WR on can tilt.) Depending on how you put the Raider it will depend to the direction it will tilt... I could see this stand being reused for the possible Roton... The guys on the WR box... for those who don't remember the Roton...

Now here's a video look at the Wind Raider...

Now with that said and viewed: Here's the scorecard for the Wind Raider:
The Wheels rotate, the wings do too. The rudder swivels and the hood ornament thingie spins around. For a static piece it has a lot of articulation. The only minor gripe I have is that the wings do not have an option for spinning/being posed independently.

Paint and Sculpt:
As mentioned above, the stickers of vintage times are decals now, so be careful with the WR cause they may scratch off. There's no huge slops on mine, so I'm happy with the paint. Sculpt-wise, the 4Horsemen did their stuff by bringign 3-D details to what were stickers in the past.

The Stand... Which was not expected, but is an excellent addition that improves the Wind Raider...

Action Features/Playability:
Well, we know that it can fire off the anchor and it can retrieve it. It has wheels so "the kids" can roll it around the floor and play MOTUC Bowling... (Don't cheat, pop-off the wings before playing MOTUC Bowling)

it's an amazing vehicle that manages to showcase the sculpting magic of the Four Horsemen in a way that the customers are not used to seeing... I mean they made a vehicle that I wasn't too into it as a kid into an amazing thing! (If they'd make a DRAGON WALKER!! I'd faint!)
As hard as I tried I could NOT avoid making a Snakes on a Plane joke...

Jan 14, 2012

Do We REALLY NEED Playsets in MOTUC?

Looking at Masters of the Universe Classics we've got the figures, Beasts and now Vehicles with the Wind Raider. The Next Step is rather Obvious, Playsets. When they're mentioned Grayskull is the first thing that comes to mind. But I'm not here to talk about Which Playset I'd like to see in Masters of the Universe Classics. The real question is: Do we REALLY NEED Playsets in MotU:C?

Before all of you start grabbing your pitforks and form an angry mob, hear me out!

I'm NOT Against getting Castle Grayskull, Snake Mountain, The Fright Zone, The Crystal Castle, and the other important background places that were Playsets in a "previous toyline."
What I mean by "Do we need Playsets?" is do we need all the bells and whistles like working elevators, voice changers, electronic lights and sounds, slime dumping, firing missiles, etc. for what will pretty much be a bunch of underscaled, glorified backdrop pieces.

Sure, some collectors are buying MOTUC Figures for themselves and their kids to spread the MOTU Love, but we already ARE Missing stuff that made these guys fun when we WERE Kids!
Battle Armors don't have their funky Battle Damage drums, Sy-Klone doesn't spin around, Hurrican Hordak's weapons are very static, Thunder Punch He-Man's punches lack "Thunder", Kobra Khan can't spit and Leech doesn't suck, etc.

Since the line is an "Adult Collector" Line, then why not go the "Adult Collector" way and Make MOTUC Grayskull a True Backdrop and when the Eventual He-Man Movie DOES come, make the Movie Grayskull MOTUC Compatible or that you can Snap on the MOTUC Grayskull on the Front Facade of the Movie Castle.

Now, How big should these backdrop/playsets be?

The 200X Grayskull is roughly 20 inches tall. So, in theory a MOTUC Castle should at least be 24 inches tall, from bottom to highest point on the Turrets. So, you'd need about 30 inches of clearance on the shelf to display your figures With the Castle in it. Now, if it were a playset, most of the collectors displaying Grayskull will probably have it in "Backdrop mode" to save
space and whatever "play features" added would be greatly ignored.

And if we go with Mattel's suggested price for a Full-fledged MOTUC Grayskull, I don't see people shelling out for Multiples WHILE buying Multiple Subs for the year. Heck some may be forced to choose between one or the other.
Now that's Just Grayskull, add Snake Mountain, The Fright Zone, The Slime Pit, Crystal Castle, Crystal Falls, the 3 Towers of Eternia, Nordor, Starship Eternia and any other places that never had a playset in the vintage line that now can:
Like Eternos, Hordak's Temple, or the Whispering Woods.

Here's the thing: No matter what they do, either a backdrop or a full Playset, they will never be able to match the full scope of the place. Like say Grayskull. The MOTUC Canon seems to be a combo of both vintage and 200X Canon, so that means the Normal Castle and the Crystaline sub-basement where the power of the sword is hidden. Now if the MOTUC Castle were to be made and they were to include this Additional Element to the Castle, it would require to make it even taller and add extra pieces for it to make a bit of sense from the outside. Which I guess it would mean a bit of the Abyss in front of Grayskull and maybe the Filmation Ramp for the Drawbridge.

So here's my solution for those other places or areas that a Playset would not work that well: Dioramas.

But not What Mattel calls a Diorama like the Weapons Rack. What I mean by Diorama is something more like the stage on a play, or some other playsets

As you can see on this WWE "playset" It's Pretty much a cardboard background, a bit of Floor and some plastic elements.
Nothing too complicated.

So let's say Mattel would release, say, a Crystaline chamber of Power Diorama. It would need Crystaline Structures, a few Crystaline platforms (Think MOTUC stands but large enough to fit A standard figure, Cringer and Orko) and a small alcove to
fit the Orb stand from Temple of Darkness Sorceress and the chest where both Swords are kept. Now that one does not need a special cardboard backdrop, since one can add a piece of black cardboard to simulate the endlessness of the void where the chamber is.

Now something like Snake Mountain Throne Room would require a backdrop and maybe a "special floor" (Either cardboard or plastic if mattel wants to get fancy) I'd say the Throne would be a 3-D piece, maybe some 3-D rocky outcroppings, Skeletor's scrying Table. While this would mean that these Items would be a bit more expensive, it would help displaying them a lot
better than say, the Weapons rack. It looks a Million times better in a Grayskull-like Backdrop!

Now I'm not saying that they should do THIS instead of Playsets/Backdrops.What I'm saying is that These could COMPLEMENT some of the main playsets/backdrops, or be a sort of "appetizer" while we wait for Mattel to figure out the Logistics involved to make affordable playsets.

So, to answer the question: DO WE REALLY NEED Playsets? No, but they are VERY WELCOME! While not Everyone will use the Play features, the option for having them is important. Yes, I am very aware that it kinda contradicts my view of having a Grayskull facade released through MOTUC. That's the whole point! I AM at a crossroads, while the practical side of me thinks: "I'm not going to spend most of my time playing with the Castle. I just changed the original batteries from my 200X Grayskull." The inner child on the other hand enjoys the 56kbps Modem sounds from Grayskull and the lasers! (even if I lost the missiles a long time ago... Stupid spring loaded stuff!) It's all about options.

Since we will never be able to have Truly Accurate versions of the playsets, then the best solution in my opinion is give us a Basic Playset, then expand through Dioramas...

If young girls can survive with smaller dioramas as playsets, without resorting to the Ginormous 3 story high Barbie houses... (That's like a 6 story MOTUC Playset) or using them IN combination with these Titanic displays, then why is it nearly impossible to apply that to an adult collector line? I mean the adult collectors eat up that stuff especially if they include trinkets or other stuff from the shows or the toyline!

While a Gigantic Snake Mountain like this would be cool, if a Snake Mountain Throne was made available before getting the Entire Mountain, the collectors would eat it up! We may try to deny it, but we LOVE that stuff... We went bananas when we saw the Ram Stone... (GITD Repaint in a Weapons pack please!) If one of these small dioramas comes with the Diamond Ray of Disappearance, The Magic Mirror of the Sorceress, Light Hope (Pillar of Light form), etc. chances are the Collectors will buy them...

Heck! I remember that a couple of collectors were disappointed that Mo-Larr's chair was just a bit of cardboard to display the figures on the box!

Jan 8, 2012

Looking Back on Marvel Legends (The Hasbro Era)

After the trip down the Toy Biz era of Marvel Legends, it's Hasbro's turn at bat:
Fans were afraid that Hasbro would do 1 or 2 waves before shrinking the toys to Joe Scale.

Wave 1: Annihilus
This wave consists of:
Ultimate Iron Man
Planet Hulk (The Gladiator Hulk from said mini series)
Frasier Beast (X3 United Beast)
Emma Frost

Let's get this out of the way: Emma Frost is Almost as crappy as Scarlet Witch. The reduced Articulation and paint job hurt Emma a bit... Also her ugly face sculpt and super small head that look Off.
Banshee is also looking Kinda bad. His sickly flesh color, lack of a neck flap on his suit that makes his actual neck look freakishly long and last but not least the "wings" are partially wrong: The thinner stripes are meant to be the black ones while the thicker ones are Yellow. Also his hair should have been more orangey...
The best of the 3 figures I bought from this wave (Due to being the only ones I found... Later on I saw a Frasier Beast Peg Warming, but with no Hulkdiator, or Ultimate Evil Spock Robot I gave up on the wave... Though I got to play with an Annihilus and he was sweet!) is HERCULES!!
He's very MOTUC Like for a figure made years before MOTUC.

Before Wave 2, Hasbro relaesed some TRU Exclusive repaints:
Silver Statue Wolverine: A Completely Silver Repaint of The ML VI Wolverine.
Diamond Emma Frost: A Repaint of the second ugliest ML EVER!! They sucked so much that TRU had trouble getting rid of them at the marvelous price of $1! That's no Typo... They had Trouble getting Rid of Diamond Emma Frost even at ONE DOLLAR!

Wave II: The Blob!
Ultimate Abraham Lincoln... I mean Wolverine
Asgardian Armor Thor
X3 Jean Grey
X3 Juggernaut

Blob Loses Articulation due to his girth. Sadly his flesh tone is molded plastic with little shading.
YellowJacket (Looks better in his slightly more golden looking variant. The default one is too lime yellow for my tastes) is one of the best of the wave. He kinda looks like he shares parts with Series 1 Banshee and QuickSilver.
QuickSilver Is pretty cool sculptwise, but the lack of shading kinda hurts him... He has a Green Variant, which I saw one but wasn't interested in it. (My Quicksilver was not going to wear his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants clothes.)
X3 Jean is Very crappy. Her face competes with Emma Frost on bad Hasbro faces. I think she became Custom Fodder... She has a "Dork Phoenix" variant...
X-3 Juggernaut, while not a bad figure I bought it as Custom fodder.
Ultimate Wolverine... Aw Hell no! I popped the head out of that sucker and popped a spare Ultimate Peter Parker and made a crappy Havok custom.
Now The Next Two figures ARE Pretty Cool: She-Hulk and Asgardian Lord Thor
The only thing I don't like about Thor is that Mjolnir looks like a Cinderblock...
The Last Figure of the Wave is Xorn.
He's pretty good, but he needed Swappable heads instead of a Helmet.

Wal-Mart (who rarely stocks their exclusives) got a Special Silver Surfer:
A Reused ML V Silver Surfer with a new board with pegs instead of Magnets.

Now cause Marvel Legends is a Hasbro Property and Hasbro is Large enough to go to San Diego Comic Con, ML got some SDCC Exclusive Action!
Lawyer She-Hulk (Swappable hands/Feet, Removable glasses, dress, a suitcase ) Without the dress and the correct parts on she's Fantastic Four (Backup Member) She-Hulk!
Stan Lee! With an Extra Peter Parker Head You can make a Stan Lee, a Peter Parker, or a Spider-Man with this figure. (The best use for him would be an unmasked Spidey)

Well, Hasbro struck with a Fantastic Four Themed Wave and a Spider-Man Wave with a Sandman BAF. Both waves that I NEVER SAW IN PERSON!!
This wave consisted of:
-Doctor Doom: While a bit less detailed than the Toy Biz version, he looks cleaner and has Torso Articulation.
-Human Torch: He has the "QuickSilver/YellowJacket/Banshee" buck, which is a plus. I don't know if his flames are removable, but I wish he had another non-flamed head... Seriously he looks like Vegeta.
-Invisible Woman: Something about her face/hair seems off. Other than that is the first time The invisible Woman shows up on a wave. Not too fond of that suit though.
-The Mole Man: Hasbro could have taken the easy way out and reuse the Doc Ock Body from the SMC line/Sinister Six set with a new head, but they made a brand new Mole Man...
-Reed Richards: Now in Super Stretchy Mode... I'm not too fond of the stretched out body, but that's the BEST Richards Headsculpt I've seen... I'd say he has the ICONIC Reed Richards look.
-Namor The Submariner: Iconic Namor with his green Speedo. Looks better than the Toy Biz version.
-Silver Surfer: His headsculpt is less Ailen looking unlike the previous versions of him. He has a Vac Metal Board... I'm surprised that he didn't get Vac Metal... (On him it would be awesome)
-The Thing: It looks like a new Buck but reusing the House of M Thing head... not too fond of this one.

Now for the Sandman Wave:
This wave looks like a LOT of repaints...
- S-M2 Doc Ock: First Repaint of the Superposable Ock
- S-M Green Goblin: Repaint of the Super Posable Green Goblin from the First Movie Toyline (Minus the Removable Helmet)
- S-M2 Mary Jane: Finally! A new sculpt. She's got wood and her sculpt is a bit meh...
- S-M3 Green Goblin Jr.: I refuse to call him New Goblin, but I should call him White Rocket Racer... Looks Pretty good, but it's a shame that his mask isn't removable so we could have our very own James Franco.
- Normal Sandman: OK it's 3 New Sculpts... Looks OK. At least we have an option between Mega Sand Monster Sandman and Normal Sandman.
- S-M2 Spider-Man: He's a Repaint of the best movie Spider-Man Figure.
- S-M3 Symbiote Spidey: I bet he's a repaint of the other Spidey except with a new Torso... Nope! He's a new sculpt... With LEss Articulation than Normal Spidey...
- S-M3 Venom: Obviously he's a new Sculpt... Looks OK-Ish, but I'm not a fan of movie Venom...
Hey! it has less Repaints than expected!
Still Hasbro was striking hard... While these 2 waves were around they also released a couple of 2 packs AND a TRU Exclusive!
-Cable and Marvel Girl (Jean Grey)
This Cable has a new look and I think only his arms are reused from his Toy Biz version.
The Jean Grey looks like she uses most of the Rachel Summers body from the Brood Queen Wave (more on that wave later.) with a new head that has a resemblance to her Toy Biz ML6 head. (Nice move Hasbro!)
-Domino and Cannonball
Cannonball is a Reuse of the ML7 Ghost Rider... That's why he looks so "wimpy"
Domino is pretty much a reuse of the XMC X-Treme Rogue... (The only not ugly Rogue figure...)
-The TRU Exclusive is The Black Queen: Sadly it's a Repaint of Fugly White Queen with a new head... and a Whip. She looks a lot better than Emma frost, but that buck is not that good.

Now after that Onslaught we got the Brood Queen Wave:
The Wave consists of:
-Bucky: He's pretty cool and reuses some pieces from the Young Avengers set
-Captain America (WWII): It's a Decent Cap, but I wish his reds were darker
-Black Knight: Looks pretty good, though I wish he had a bit of more articulation on his thighs.
-X-3 Colossus: Not too fond of X-3 Figures, but he's OK... If it had been X-3 Shadowcat I would've been more excited.
-Astonishing Cyclops: I like him better than the XMC 90s style Cyclops. The only "flaw" is that his lime yellow should be more golden=like!
-Rachel Summers: She's got her more recent look which is slightly more stylized compared to other figures. (She has a Phoenix Force Variant)
-Hydra Agent: He's got a screaming variant which I own. His Articulation is OK.
-Danger: She's a new sculpt but her massive wings make her fall back. Also she would have been a lot better with a metallic finish.

Diamond Select got an ugly exclusive: Blue Ultimate Wolverine! a Repaint of HML2 Ultimate Wolverine.
Target got an Exclusive as Well: Movie Hulk (The one with Ed Norton)

The next Set I never saw... Have you noticed the trend of HML and me?
The Fin Fang Foom Set:
-Absorbing Man: Sadly his ball does not sport a real chain...
-Doc Samson: He looks OK.
-Savage Hulk (Both Gray and Green) I still prefer the Hulk vs Leader Hulk!
-"The End" Hulk... This is from a parallel universe AFAIK. He's the last being on an irradiated Earth or something. If he turns to Banner he dies. Looks pretty cool though. It's Hulk in a Loincloth.
-King Hulk: I guess this is part of the Planet Hulk Saga... I actually think that a Gladiator Hulk looks pretty cool...
-"Savage" She-Hulk: She- Hulk in a manner Similar to her First Appearance... Her Torso will be reused soon...
-Skaar (Son of Hulk): Another Hulk-Like character who has a MOTU vibe to him.
-Wendigo: Pretty Cool Looking, looks better than a White Sasquatch.

SDCC brought a cool 3 pack: Ka-Zar, Shanna The She-Devil and Zabu the Sabretooth-Tiger.
Shanna's buck is the Savage She-Hulk buck, Ka-Zar seems to be wearing clothes? Zabu is a Sigma Six Tiger reused. It's a cool set, but Zabu would have knocked it down a few points if I were to review it...

There was a new wave of 2 packs... as well.
Elektra vs Ronin:
It's a Better Elektra than the one from TBML IV... She has swappable hands and head (for both of her looks) There is a Skrull variant with no extra head.
Ronin comes with an extra Clint Barton head.

There's the Reed and Thing pack
Thing is the same one from the Ronan Wave and the Reed is the ToyBiz ML F4 Pack head on the ToyBiz MLV Reed Body. Waste of pack...

The Third pack is Smauel L. Jackson with Ultimate Captain America (WWII Version)
I'm no fan of Ultimate Nick Fury, but he's a pretty cool looking fig. The Cap is not that bad either.

The Last Pack is Forge and Wolverine (X-Men Training Clothes) Could you believe that Wolverine was what made me skip this one? He's too tall and I'm not fan of both headsculpts?
On the other hand Forge is pretty cool... He shares the same buck as Wolverine... Except the right leg.

The Red Hulk Wave: Since I'm Targetless I freaking Hate this!
First off , I don't care about "Rulk" and I'm only interested in Warlock and Spiral... or should I say was...
-Warlock: He's pretty cool and he has the Infinity Gauntlet...
-Spiral: She looks awesome, but Hasbro did cut some key POA for her... Bicep swivel... She kinda needs those!
-Wolverine (yet again): Looks OK. He has a Black Variant (x-Force I think)
-Symbiote Spidey: Looks OK, but I miss the hand Articulation.
-Union Jack: Looks OK, but I'm not that interested in him.
-Silver Savage: Silver Surfer as a Gladiator... I really don't care...

The Ares Wave is next: I've already given up on Hasbro... Most of these figures I NEVER SAW!! (as you can see on this rant.)
Saw them ONCE at a Wal-Mart... Not the Entire Wave though... but Torch, Ben Reilly and Heroes Reborn IronMan.
This wave has:
-Heroes Reborn Ironman: Ironman, the Dragster edition...
-Ben Reilly the Spider-Clone:He's better than the one we got on SMC...
-Human Torch: Who has the best Johnny Storm head I've seen... but completely flamed on! (and has another more flamed on variant...) Seriously doesn't anyone think that Human Torch should get a flamed off variant by default!?
-Vision:Eh... TB's Vision is good enough for me... Wasted opportunity. A White vision would have been better.
-Crossbones:He's a Punisher Character, right? Not much to say about him... He seems to be roughly the same size as the BAF though...
-Kang: A Repaint of the F4Classics Kang.
-Guardian:He's OK and helps Sasquatch to increase the number of Alpha Flight people to 2...
-Ultimate WarMachine: Repaint of Ultimate Ironman

HasbroToyshop Exclusive AoA Sunfire: Looks Pretty cool, but I'd prefer NORMAL Sunfire first...

The Holocaust Wave: (I refuse to call him Nemesis!) was another Wal-Mart Exclusive that I never Saw... No wonder I gave up on ML...
It consisted of:
-"Cat" Beast: Not a fan of that look... and no he can't haz a cheezburger
-Black Bolt:His wing things look BAAAAD!
-DareDevil (Red and Yellow versions): Expected to have those variants with DareDevil in ML...
-Punisher (Jungle Camo variant): It's closer to the Tom Jane look... Prefer the Jungle Camo variant.
-Nova:Nothing to write Home About... He looks almost DCUC-like...
-Tigra:Looks OK except for the lack of fur...

Now ML has been reduced to a few sets of 2 packs and it seems that it's going the way of the dinosaur due to the appearance of the 3 3/4" Marvel Universe line...
-a Hand Ninja vs a SHIELD Agent (or Nick Fury)
-The Variant of this pack has a white Hand Ninja and an Agent (or Dum Dum Dugan)

-We also got an Invisible Woman And Human Torch pack:
The Sue seems to be new... but she looks like a man, baby! Torch is a repaint of the Ares Wave Torch... It's the closest we'll ever get to a flamed off Johnny!

-We have an Ironman vs Female Shield Agent pack:
The Ironman has a Stealth Armor Variant. (More poseable than the First ML Ironman from ToyBiz) Each pack has enough pieces to make either Sharon Carter or Maria Hill... So Hasbro is nudging ya to get both...

Last but not least, the Skrull vs Kree pack!
The Skrull is a repainted Super Skrull.
The Kree seems to be made on the Quicksilver buck with a few new pieces.

Hasbro still fired off one last wave of 2 packs before announcing that Marvel Legends would be back in Full-Force by 2012... Part of me does worry about it being too little too late.

The last set of 2 packs consisted of:
Black Widow vs The Winter Soldier:
The Black Widow is what makes the variant: The black suit that is more popular and a gray suit.
For the Winter Soldier there is no variant.

Deadpool and Warpath:
Both characters have a different colored variant and Sneaky Hasbro found a way to nudge you into buying both!
-Red and Black Deadpool with X-Force's silver and Black Warpath.
-Blue and Yellow Deadpool with the Old School Red and Blue Warpath.

The last Pack is Valkyrie and Hulk:
Incredibly enough Valkyrie was a very wanted figure, but the end result was a bit underwhelming. The Hulk is kinda cool in theory, but the body looks a bit too cartoony...

And that is pretty much the END of Marvel Legends... Until their Return...
And this is what the return of ML starts with:
2011 SDCC Thor!
If this is what Hasbro is bringing up to the game with ML 3.0 it's no wonder Mattel is crapping on their pants! Now if Hasbro can make ML and keep them at a lower cost than Mattel's DCU All-Stars (The new re-branded DCUC) and have them look that cool... without the constant QC issues that plague DCUC... Then, Mattel's only hope to survive the 6 inch Superhero toyline battle is the Mattycollector.com branch of DCUC!

Jan 6, 2012

Looking Back on Marvel Legends (The ToyBiz era)

Marvel Legends, the line that revolutionized toy collecting in the year 2002 Its humble origins began on a Spider-Man "Collector's Line". The First Incarnation of Spider-Man Classics (circa 2000):

As you can see on these six figures, the card EVEN LOOKS LIKE Most of Toy Biz Marvel Legends. So these are the Proto-Legends... (yes there were more figures, but I chose the six that I actually own(ed) some broke, others were lost. (More on that later)
Now fast forward 1 or 2 years into the future and Marvel Legends began it's journey to change the action figure world. Why are the SMC important? Well, aside being the Proto-ML the figures Before them left a lot to be desired in Sculpt and Articulation.

OK, so The First ML Wave were mostly an Avengers Line-Up and Toad... (Probably a Remnant of a cancelled project)
This wave I bought it almost completely. I never bought the Iron Man Variants, but it was mostly cause I wasn't interested in the Stealth Armor and I never Saw the Gold Armor. My ML Cap died on a shelf diving accident that broke his neck into pieces. (During the Hasbro ML years, so I already had a Superior Ultimate Cap)
I'd say that the sculpts ranked from best to worst would be: Hulk, Toad, Ironman/Cap (tie)
The Best Articulation ranking would be: Cap/Ironman (tie), Hulk, Toad.

Wave II was Pretty Much a Themed Wave: Fantastic Four... More Like Fantastic 2, Doctor Doom, and Namor.
This wave had 2 variants: Doombot (Never saw one) and The Thing: Trenchcoat and hat. (This one I got for Free back when K-B Toys had a promo that for every $100 spent on toys (in 4 Separate $25+ Purchases, excluding videogames/consoles.) you get a $25 gift card. I got "Disguised" Thing and Mekaneck for "free" and something else to round up the $25.
The Thing is AMAZING!! His hands were bendy and his body looked awesome. The Trenchcoat variant makes him even cooler. Torch was OK, but a non-flamed variant would have been cool to have. I kinda wished we could have seen the Traditional Speedo Namor. His spear is really brittle.
From Best to Worst in the Sculpt Department:
Thing, Doom, Namor, Torch.
Torch, Doom/Namor (Tie), Thing

Wave III was a bit more varied: Magneto, Wolverine, Ghost Rider (Dan Ketch), Thor, Affleck Dare Devil. (Wolverine had a Variant... Unmasked.)
First of all Affleck SUCKS!! Very Little Articulation, but the Sculpt is OK-Ish. On the Other Hand, Ghost Rider kicked ALL sorts of Ass! His base is his flaming bike, he has a real chain... Heck! you can hang him on a wall as if he was riding them! Wolverine is a bit too big to be well, Wolverine... Magneto is The Ironman buck redressed a bit. It's not bad, but the crotch is kind of obvious tell-tale of parts reuse.
Ghost Rider, Thor, Wolverine, DareDevil,Magneto
Ghost Rider, Thor, Wolverine/Magneto (tie), DareDevil.

Wave IV was a trailblazer... It ended the Sausage-fest that was ML.
Punisher,Beast,Gambit, Elektra, and Goliath.
I did NOT have Goliath, and he's something about him that looks 90s-ish... His features seem softer and 10 PoA... I never saw him...
The Best Sculpts are Beast and Punisher. That Frank Face is PURE BAD ASS! Elektra's articulation is a bit weird Since she's got a sort of V crotch and her buttcheeks rotate with her legs. Gambit is the average guy here... he's got a couple of new parts and a cloth coat.
(I did go through 2 Elektras) 1 broke her neck peg and I got a replacement after she became a perennial peg-warmer. (She was really tough to find at first.)
In sculpt the best to worst would be:
Punisher, Beast, Gambit, Elektra, Goliath
In Articulation:
Beast, Punisher, Gambit, Elektra, Goliath
There were 2 gift packs released between waves 4 and 5. I only owned the X-Men Pack, but I will discuss both.
X-Men Legends:
Beast (With Cloth Lab Coat and glasses), a New Unmasked Wolverine (NEw HEadsculpt),Magneto (with a new headsculpt), Gambit with a Pleather Coat) and Rogue (who fell off the Ugly Tree, hit all the branches on the way down, then the tree fell on her face.)
The only reason to get this is Rogue and DAMN! She Fugly! (She shares the Elektra Buck...)

Urban Legends:
Elektra, DareDevil, Spider-Man, and The Punisher
The Daredevil seems a reuse from the Second Version of Spider-Man Classics (Not the Proto-ML one, but the newer one with action features and sometimes reduced Articulation) As I was saying The Daredevil seems to be the one with a base that has a Twirling flagpole so it looks like DD is doing a stunt on the Flagpole. Elektra is the same as in ML IV, but painted white... The Headsculpt seems to be different though. Punisher is the same figure but with a new headsculpt, a rocket Launcher and a coat. Spidey is a reuse from the Spider-Man Classics Line (The kiddified one) He's the Parachute Spidey... (The Best Spidey with Painted Webs) The best things from this set are Angry Frank and DareDevil.
Wave V: This one brought some Big Guns... and a Pretty obscure Chase Figure that reuses the Affleck Buck! DAMMIT! DAMMIT! DAMMIT!
Reed Richards, Silver Surfer, Nick Fury, Sabretooth, Blade, Howard The Duck, Red Skull, and Colossus.
I never saw the Skull... I thought he was a myth until I saw him at a scalper's... I wasn't paying $125 for a barely unarticulated figure. I also never saw Blade... He was at a slightly more reasonable price compared to Red Skull, but still too high for my tastes. Also Blade looks like Wesley Snipes... I wanted a more Comic Book-like Blade.
Reed seems to reuse the Paratrooper Spidey buck, while Silver Surfer the Urban Legends Dare Devil buck. Howard is a 3 PoA PVC mini-figure that comes with the Surfer. Nick Fury reuses the Namor Buck (which we will see again at least 2 more times) The cool part about Fury is that his mouth has a space for you to put a piece of chopped toothpick to simulate his Cigar!

Colossus/Sabretooth (tie) Reed Richards, Blade, Nick Fury, Red Skull, Howard
Colossus, Blade, Red Skull, Nick Fury, Reed Richards, Howard The Duck, Silver Surfer.

Wave VI: Oh How I loathe thee... One of the Hardest waves to find. I got a present from a friend who bought me a Phoenix at Scalper prices... I repaid that friend cause I felt it wasn't fair... So Indirectly I bought her from a Scalper. I also got Juggernaut and Cable from that Wave. NEVER Saw Deadpool, I skipped on Tom Jane Punisher, saw Brown Wolvie once, but I chose to take Cable and Juggernaut that day thinking that Wolvie might still be around... Boy was I wrong...
There seems to be a brown straps variant of him, but I'm glad that I got my yellow straps Cable... I reused a Castle Grayskull Gun from 200X and the Trident to give Cable his MVC2 Weapons. A MGS 2 Fortune Railgun served as his Placeholder Viper Beam. Juggernaut, that baby is MASSIVE!! Phoenix has a new Female Buck From the waist up, she's still the Elektra buck. The Crotch is new. She features normal Ball joints, which will become the norm after some Experiments with the female crotch. Now Everyone is on the same level in Articulation (except the pack ins) So there is little difference. I THINK Deadpool reuses the Daredevil buck... and instead of an unmasked variant, DP had a swappable head.
I think Punisher is the most meh... in sculpt. He kinda looks like David Duchovny instead of Tom Jane...
Spidey got a second Set in ML... Still he has not appeared on a numbered Wave... but let's go into The Sinister Six Set:
I know what you're thinking: Sinister Six... So we're getting, Doc Ock, Kraven, Mysterio, Electro, Vulture, and Sandman... Well, you've got 3 right. Dock Ock, Kraven and Electro... The other 3 are Green Goblin, Venom and Black Cat. Spidey is in it too...
Where do I start:
Black Cat seems to have fallen down the ugly tree after Rogue broke off a few branches... She also shares the Elektra buck...
Doc Ock is a reuse from the SMC Ock that was a bit undersized... Ock will get a chance to redeem himself in MLVIII.
Kraven is a reuse from the SMC Kraven (which reuses the Namor Buck) but with a screaming headsculpt... I gave this Kraven away and used the SMC Kraven which is better looking.
Venom is pretty much Sabretooth... Down to the elbow fins... that's the only drawback he has. I Love the non-Slobbering face that most venoms have.
Electro seems to use the Paratrooper Spidey buck... Simple and effective.
Green Goblin is a reuse from the Demonic Hobgoblin buck from SMC... Love the headsculpt cause the Goblin eyes are see through and you can see a bit of Norman's face... Creepy!
Spidey... Ooh This Spidey is pretty cool! I love that headsculpt! The body is a bit too bulky for my tastes, but I switched that head with a McFarlane Spidey from SMC and made my definitive ML Spidey!

Why get this box set: ML Electro, Black Cat, Green Goblin, Venom and a kick-ass Spidey!

Fantastic Four Sets:There were 2 of those...
The First one which I own has a variant. In one Sue is visible and in the other she is not.
The other set is just the F4. (No Herbie, no Doom and No Franklin)
The headsculpts on the 4 are stylized and Doom's face is more burnt than his ML II Counterpart.
Sue has the Elektra Buck but with a new Experimental hips used on ML VIII for Black Widow.
Reed is reusing the Para Spidey buck, Torch is the same as ML2 Torch but with a Johnny Headsculpt. Ben is ML II Ben but with new non-bendy hands. Doom is the same as his ML II counterpart, minus the head. Franklin and Herbie are brand New.
Why get this set?
Sue Richards, Franklin and Herbie... Ben is good, but Reed and Johnny are meh.

Marvel Legends Wave VII I Skipped Silver Centurion Ironman cause he was a lightly redeco'd ML I Iron Man... and I regret it to this day. I also skipped Phasing Vision cause I wanted a Solid one... (and I saw 5 Phasers and only one normal...) Never saw the Ghost Rider Variant.
Favorite Figures form this wave: Apocalypse and Weapon X.
Least Favorite: Hawkeye. This was due to his perennial bowlegged issues. The man can't stand and he looks a bit too wimpy!

Wave VIII (IMO one of the BEST ML WAVES) it came with the Man-Thing (I can't stop chuckling whenever I say his name... Man-Thing.), Doctor Octopus (Yay!), Black Widow (with BW II as her variant that I never saw in stores), Ultimate Captain America (Classic inspired Cap Variant), Modern (back then) Iron Man, Storm (Mohwak Variant), and Iceman.
I can't choose a bad figure from this wave. Some people might have had some translucent plastic issues with Iceman and bendy issues with Doc Ock's Tentacles. Ultimate Cap is a SUPERB Figure... As an Ultimate Universe hater, I got to say that Ultimate Cap's design is cool and the poseability of the toy kicks so much ass! Also he can flip the bird at Ironman! Black Widow is basically a reuse of the Sue Richards Body, but it works... I guess you could say she's the low point of the line.

Wave IX: Enter the BAFs... Toybiz implemented the Build A figure for Marvel Legends on this wave... and they started with Galactus!! Whoa... A 16" Galactus with ML Articulation! That's HUGE!!
The wave consisted of:
Soctor Strange, Charles Xavier (With a Picard X chair... The 90s Hoverchair was not possible due to Logistics...), Gray (First Appearance) Hulk with a Green Variant, Deathlok, Nightcrawler, Bullseye (with a more fierce variant) and Sexy War Machine!
Sadly War Machine reused the Standard Ironbuck, which is a little under articulated compared to the modern MLs. Also his face seems a bit off... His WM weapons and clip-on effects make up for the reused buck's shortcomings. I'm surprised that Doctor Strange did not get an Astral Body Variant...
I've never cared much about Deathlok, but that figure is pretty cool.

Now we'll take a break with a Box Set I never Saw...
Spider-Man: Fearsome Foes set...
It contains a Spidey, duh... (The MacFarlane Spidey with a new head.), a Brand New Rhino with more Articulation than the SMC one, a Brand New Lizard that looks more like his earlier appearances. There is also Carnage (who may or may not be a resculpt of the SMC Carnage with a crappy pyramid trap.) And The Vulture... Hey! We're a Sandman and a Mysterio short of the Original Sinister Six!!

Reason to buy this set? Uh, EVERYONE OF THE CHARACTERS!!
Now On Carnage: I am disappointed in Toy Biz... They gave Reed Richards swappable hands to simulate his stretchy powers, but no swappable arms or clip on Symbiote blade attachments for Carnage... An Ax hand would have been so cool to have with him!!

Wave X The Sentinel Wave: Guess who's Officially become a Marvel Legend (even if he's been on 3 out of the 5 box sets) Spidey!! There's also a Cyclops (That reuses the Namor buck), Omega Red who reuses the Sabretooth buck (but with a few new pieces... no fins for Red's elbows) Mystique, Angel, Black Panther and Mr Sinister round up the wave.
Aside Sinister, Black Panther, Omega Red and Angel this wave is a bit meh... Especially when Sentinel is a Freaking Army Builder... AND the line gives you an extra Sentinel crotch with Mystique or Omega Red!
This was a wave to fill up with Army Building folks like:
AIM People, Ultron, Shield Agents (swappable heads), Hand Ninjas, Multiple Man, Scrier, Hydra Soldiers. It would've made it easier for people to double dip on their figures...

Now we enter a small break on BAFs with the "Legendary Riders" wave... This wave has one of the UGLIEST Figures EVER!! Scarlet Witch! I think that ML Rogue's Ugly came from when she kissed Scarlet Witch. There were rumors about she being short packed because she was meant to be scrapped and redone again... (which hasn't happened yet) We also have another Thing (his First Appearance Look) Days of Future Past Wolverine (Reuse from the New X-Men Wolverine from the X-Men Classics Sub-line) with an awful rubber jacket. (He had a "Cowboy Logan variant) Hulkbuster Ironman, Taskmaster, Vengeance, Wonderman (wth Ionc Variant) and last but not least The Infamous "Bunny" Ultron that was sculpted by the 4 Horsemen.
I only got Fugly Witch, Wonderman, Taskmaster and Logan... missed on Vengeance and HB Ironman and willingly skipped FA Thing... I own The Bunny Ultron too... I just tend to forget about its existence.

Now This next Wave brings forth The Apocalypse!! Wave XII The BAF is Apocalypse... Which helps those who collect both ML and SOTA SF figures cause we can have a Marvel vs Street Fighter or a display of X-Men vs Street Fighter!
Now this Wave consists of:
Astonishing Wolverine (with unmasked Variant)

X-23: Purple suit, Black Suit variant (Own black Variant... Face looks weird on Purple variant.)
Bishop (there's a Bald Variant)
Sasquatch (White Variant... Is it supposed to be Wendigo?)
Iron Fist (w red suit/battle damaged variant)
Maestro (Cool figure but mine broke after a 16 inch shelf dive to my bed!)

Aside Maestro Breaking This wave was OK... Weird that this wave wasn't as X-Heavy as I expected... No Archangel? X-23 would be the most meh of the whole set.

Before the Next Wave, I'll discuss the First Wave of Face-Off packs AND The Young Avengers Set. (I didn't own a YA Set, nor the Cap Face-Off pack)

Hulk vs. Leader:
This set has THE BEST ML Hulk I've seen So far... Now The Leader... his toy is a bit too fragile and I never found the Classic Leader Variant... (which I found better looking than Scrotum-head Leader.

Captain America Vs. Set(s):
Now this was the BEST of the wave... On one hand you have a partial Reuse of Ultimate Cap, but made into Classic Captain America. His variant is a Steve Rogers head, but the Enemies are what made this set more interesting:
Normal Cap's opponent was Cosmic Cube Red Skull... A Super Articulated Red Skull!? AWESOME!!
The Steve Rogers Variant did NOT have Red Skull as an opponent... It had Baron Von Strucker as his opponent (in a Red Skull buck repainted with a BVS head)

Dare Devil vs. Kingpin:
DD vs White Suit Kingpin
DD with a Matt Murdock head (WITH GLASSES) vs Kingpin in a black suit.
It was a pain for me to find a White Suit Kingpin... While I love the Black suit Kingpin's head sculpt, the DD was not of my liking, especially wearing those MM glasses.

The Young Avengers set: It exists, I don't care much about it... some of the pieces here will be reused by Hasbro when they get their chance at ML...

Marvel Monsters set: I knew of it's existence, but never saw it in person. Not much to say about it... That Dracula looks pretty much like a Prof. X reuse.

Onslaught Wave (MLXIII):
This wave has kind of a cool roster, but the smaller size of the BAF kinda sucks... (If they had no choice to go Smaller, they should have done Onslaught's first Form)
This wave consists of:
Green Goblin (w/unmasked variant)
Loki (w/Crown of lies Variant)
Abomination (w/Melty face variant)
Lady Deathstrike (w/Undershirt painted to avoid scandals from mommies about too much sideboob)
If I have to choose the "worst" figure of the wave then Deathstrike it is. Her face looks too happy and friendly.
I freaking HATE Wal-Mart cause of their Giant Man Wave:
Kitty Pryde
Ms. Marvel (Carol Danvers)
The Sentry ("Jesus head" Sentry Variant)
Captain Britain
Age of Apocalypse Wolverine (With Charred face variant)
Age of Apocalypse Sabretooth

A really good wave with a nice BAF... yet Wal-Mart never stocked it!! My local Wal-Marts
only had one of these (due to me only finding Pegwarmers Sabretooth and Wolverine... I only REALLY wanted Kitty and Ms. Marvel, was that too much to ask?

Wave XIV: The MOJO Wave:
Before I comment on this wave, I must say that Toy Biz was on a roll trying to clog the Market with ML since their time working on the line was close to an end and apparently Hasbro was going to take charge of making Marvel toys... Some of these later toys seem rushed and some even seem crappier than the worst of earlier ML...
This wave is composed of:
First Appearance Iron Man (w/Gold Variant)
Luke Cage
Baron Zemo (unmasked variant)
Falcon (Classic Variant)

I got the normal versions of all of them. I have to say something: Luke Cage's hands SUCK!
Also that Psylocke is beyond wrong: She looks like British Betsy, but she's supposed to be Betsy in Kwanon's body. Also Where the heck is her Psychic Knife!! That's like making a clawless Wolverine!
CLassic Falcon looks a lot better than modern falcon (and uses the Vulture larger wings)

Before entering the Final Toy Biz Wave, we must discuss the second wave of Face-Off 2 Packs:
Iron Man/Warmachine vs Mandarin:
Alright, we've got Modular Armor Ironman or Modular Armor War Machine vs The Mandarin.
The Ironman and War Machine are the true reasons to buy both versions of this set. (Especially if you love to combine the MLs with SOTA's SF figures to create MVC Displays.)
Mandarin is a whole new level of suck!
He Has a super articulated body like all MLs... Only that his is strapped on a rubbery tunic that returns his body to the original position... (There was no point in making a new sculpt for Mandarin since TB was going down...)

Punisher vs Jigsaw:
Well both versions of this pack are really worth it. The one with "Punisher Jigsaw" has a Very Classic Punisher, while the White Suit Jigsaw has Jigsaw in a suit, with a more modern looking Punisher.

Wolverine vs Sabretooth: That's the most meh of the 3 packs. Sure you get a First Appearance Wolverine and an alternate look for Sabretooth, but the variants are just the Screaming version of the normal pack.

Now for the Last Toy Biz Wave: MODOK!
Now this wave consists of:
Spider-Woman (Jessica Drew, Variant is Julia Carpenter... got both versions)
Wasp (Short hair version, this one broke so I bought the variant)
Mar-Vell (Genis-Vell variant bought both)
Beta Ray Bill
Moon Knight (Silver Variant, bought both but made non-Silver Moon Knight into a custom Deadpool)
Thor Buster Ironman (Destroyer Variant) Never saw the Destroyer.
There's not much to say other than Wasp is a bit crappy on the QC side.

There's a House of M Box set, but I cared little about house of M... I was losing interest in Marvel at the time.
HoM versions of Hulk, Iron Man, Torch and Thing... Kinda cool that they revisited 4 figures from the first 2 ML waves.

That was the end of the Toy Biz Era on Marvel Legends. It had its highs and lows. There were QC issues but not as dreadful as the QC nightmares from Mattel. The line redefined the tastes for collectors who began choosing Articulation over gimmicks as a reason to buy toys.
The Toy Biz ML Line lasted 16 waves, various box sets and being complemented by Sub-lines like X-Men Classics, Hulk Classics, Fantastic Four Classics, and Spider-Man Classics. That's nto counting the Movie based lines. It also spawned the DC Superheroes line from Mattel (who blatantly copied ML in adding a comic with the moderately articulated figures. Then when the line became DCUC it copied the BAF concept.) Other companies saw the benefit from Articulation on figures. SOTA brought Articulation to Street Fighter, then NECA did it to a couple of different licenses (Like the TMNT) and the rest is history... Roughly 6 years after ML, He-Man was finally bitten by the Super Articulation bug... (To be fair, the 4 Horsemen wanted to have super Articulated MOTU since 2002... it only took 5 years for Mattel to get the memo.)

Part two will touch Hasbro's turn at bat with ML and the collective fear of fans...

Jan 5, 2012

Odds and Ends My Little Pony and stufff

This is from the New York Times, everypony!

Yes, Pinkie Pie... I AM EXCITED!! I dunno if Twilight Sparkle is excited, but she probably will not be due to the next news...

Twilight: the Musical IS a reality. What started as a Youtube Exclusive Parody has become a reality.
IT's very similar to a Very Potter Musical, so that's good... being a parody. Shame I can't be in New York to see it... like that OTHER Parody wait, waht1? That's NOT a parody?

Las Plagas are real!! Luckily they only make bees stupid enough for them to die...

But Pooh would be sad if we don't have anymore honey!

A Pyro Bonobo... Nah! Still, Chimp can light a fire... and help to cook food on the fire... Do I smell a new Survival Show on Discovery? Chimp vs. Wild? Planet of the Apes is becoming a reality... RUN!!

Jan 3, 2012

Looking back on Xenogears. That's right! I'm a coward!

Xenogears, the cult-favorite Squaresoft RPG that challenged a lot of stuff... Religion, good voice acting,Classic RPG conventions... Yup, Xenogears challenged them all while standing tall...

But before going deep in the whole ratings thing, let's discuss Xenogears a bit.

Xenogears was released in 1998, around the same year as Konami's Metal Gear Solid. Why is this important? Well, MGS set the standard for Videogame Voice Acting. Xenogears, well... of the few KNOWN VAs from the game 2 are pretty well known and the other 2 have some moderate to high following, but the performances are well, wooden. But I'll get into it later. Call this a not-so subtle foreshadowing.

OK Xenogears was one of the Games Square released between two Final Fantasy games (Between FFVII and FFVIII) and back then Final Fantasies got all the attention and the other games, well... they had some attention, but not as much as a Final Fantasy game.

Now Xenogears was an ambitious little project from parts of the Crono Trigger Team. It was a 6 Episode Adventure that followed the life of multiple men across various generations in the far future. So it's a Sci-Fi, space Opera type of thing meets classic fantasy type of world... a Mix of High Tech and old-school Fantasy... (Knowing my love for MOTU, that aspect drew me in.) Also at the same time it's a little bit like Neon Genesis Evangelion (with it's Religious not so subtle subtext, psychologically messed up characters) so it's a WIN-WIN. Heck even the second disc goes in a final NGEVA Episodes messed up somewhat "lazy" or "rushed" style of storytelling.

(The whole Characters sitting on a chair while the screen tells us the story instead of letting us play it) Some say it was due to the game going overbudget, others that resources from XG were redirected towards Final Fantasy VIII. Another thing that attracts people is the battle system.

The whole variety of attacks by using different button combinations is rather nifty, compared to just choosing attack. (While the video shows more focus on the dial-a-combos called Deathblows in the game, you CAN do different attacks.)

Also the gears (as the Giant Mecha are known here.) have a combat mode similar to the characters. While they cannot do multiple attacks on a turn (unless they have a Combo Level) it works in a similar manner. 3 attack buttons.

Now I should get on with the whole in-depth review and stuff.

Music and Sounds:

The Music of this game is AMAZING! I dare say that the Music is the BEST PART of the whole game.

The voice acting on the other hand, is a bit wooden. Which is surprising with folks like Cam Clarke and Brian Tochi being two main characters storywise. Note: Both of them have been Leonardo from TMNT…

This is one of the worst synchronized scenes, but it’s one of the least wooden voice acting from the game. (also it’s the least spoilerrific) I blame the one directing the VAs and the translators.

Now if this score was Music alone it would get a 10 out of 10, but the voice acting knocks it down a few pegs:


It starts very Sci-Fi and outer spacey and all that, but when the gameplay begins we’re on a kinda steampunk/medieval village. It then shoves the Gears into this peaceful setting and the plot moves forward. Fei, the main character you control most of the time is thrown into what seems like a normal, Kid vs. Evil Empire overused plot, then it flips on itself and beats you up with Judeo-Christian references and themes, while messing up with some character’s minds. We get to see glimpses of previous events (some are 500 years old, others are far older) but in the end most of the current events can be blamed to 2 Leonardos falling in love with the Referee from Nickelodeon’s Guts… If I wanna be a smart-ass about it.
I'd say an 8/10 due to parts of disc 2 where I was TOLD the story instead of being allowed to play it.


Well the game is from 1998 and from the first Playstation, we can't expect State of the Art graphics of 2012 here. For it's time it had OK Graphics, most of the problem was on the extremely low-res sprites used for the characters that made them look very pixelated at times.
I'd say about a 6/10


As I stated before, the Battles work with 3 attack buttons and depending on what combinations are used you can either chain various normal attacks depending on the amount of Ability Points available and which attacks are used. (Weak attack is worth one AP, Medium attack is worth 2 and strong Attack is worth 3) The gear battles are a bit different since you can only use one attack per turn (unless you have Combos available) and your attacks use fuel. (No fuel, no attack) so you can’t spam your strong attacks… until you get parts that let you recharge your fuel gauge.

Outside of battle, the world is 3D while the characters are 2D sprites. The camera does rotate which helps a bit. On some places the rotation is limited, but almost everywhere you can rotate it 360 degrees.
Why all this stuff on the towns and dungeons? Platforming Elements. Love them or hate them, they’re here on Xenogears. After XG, you MIGHT hate platforming elements. There’s a Real Time One-on-one Fighting mini-game, there’s a Rock, Paper, Scissors mini-game and a game of Speed. Most of these are side-quests, but the One-on-one Fighter is part of the story.

The controls are a bit awkward at first, especially jumping with theTriangle button. On the one-on-one fighting mini game, the controls are not that responsive and feel a tad sluggish.

I'd have to give it a 7/10

Fun Factor:

The game is NOT bad, but it suffers from bad aging... I wanna make a joke about Lindsay Lohan's bad aging to compare with Xenogears, but I dunno who would be more insulted. While the story is not for all, (It's a love it or hate it deal.) have to deal with tedious grinding at times, awkward/frustrating platforming segments, wooden voice acting; I have to say that the game is entertaining, to me. I actually prefer it to the "pseudo knockoff/Prequel" series made by part of the Xenogears Team at Namco (Xenosaga). Honest opinion, a 7/10 There are a few areas where I wish they weren't in it so I wouldn't have to replay them (Babel Tower, Nortune come to mind) but I enjoy the rest of the game so, I'll deal with them.

Now for the overall Xeno Score:
7/10 The Score may be a bit biased due to my love of this game, but as they say: "your mileage may vary". It has not aged well for a 14 year old game Heck even FFVII makes a reference to it:

BTW The Playstation Version says Zenogias instead of Xenogears... Probably a mistranslation...