Showing posts with label Batman. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Batman. Show all posts

Monday, 14 October 2013

The Purge: The First to Go...

I have my first few listings up on Ebay for the Purge, the catch-all term I'm using to describe the stripping down and streamlining of my collection. Every item is at a 99p start and with reasonable postage, so I'm really not trying to rip anyone off; I'll just be happy to clear out some space (both physically and mentally) and make some pennies whilst I do it.

First up is the Anniversary Collection Evolutions Jango Fett figure, which I obtained in the AOTC Bluray multipack...

The Ultimate Army Builder.
I've highlighted this figure before here, but now it's time to say goodbye. Despite coming from Episode II, an instalment better forgotten, Jango is actually a fairly decent character as a gun slingin', 'simple man' of a bounty hunter.  The thing is, this toy looks awful. I mean, it's in good condition, but look how squeezed that helmet is on the head, and how off-colour the purple jumpsuit looks. I don't watch AOTC with regularity at all, but I remember it well enough to know that Jango looked a lot more blue under the armour than he does here. Regardless of the many points of articulation this version has, the 2013 Saga Legends edition just looks far, far superior.

The Ultimate Penknife
R2-D2 here was a present that came from the previous incarnation of Saga Legends, although research tells me it was originally available in 2005 as part of the Revenge of the Sith line. It's a decent figure, good sculpt and size, but it's one of four R2s I have - the OTC Dagobah R2 is also electronic and is part of a set, the Saga Collection R2 is my standard go to Astromech and the POTF2 version I'm keeping for the sake of sentimentality. This isn't a bad figure at all, but it's a case of being the odd droid out.

Hero Lot
Luke & Han from TAC are both figures that I acquired in job lots, and I don't really have any need for either. I've photographed this Luke figure once, but generally use the Legacy Collection version as my default whiny farmboy. I would use the Han if I had a Millennium Falcon, but I very much doubt I'll own one of them any time soon...

Hot Wheels? No Wheels!
There's actually a bit of an embarrassing story behind how I ended up owning this Galoob Action Fleet Landspeeder, because when I bought it I thought I was getting a rather cheap Hasbro/Kenner POTF2 version. As soon as it arrived I realised my error, but it was my fault for not asking any questions of the seller and leaping on the purchase at the last minute, however vague the listing was. I still managed to work it into a few shots though and, needless to say, I've been crystal clear when listing it this time around.

Dark Knight in Bright Light!
It's not all Star Wars. This Batman figure from Mattel's DKR line was bought for a reduced and insanely low price, and it's served its purpose for one shot. However I've since acquired the Play Arts Kai Dark Knight Trilogy Bats, and since I'm not picking up any other 3.75" DC heroes, I've hit the end of the road with this one. As a kid I would've loved this Batman, as opposed to all the day-glo versions we got from the movie lines and animated series, but it's now surplus to requirement.


And so the Purge has begun. Do I have any second thoughts? Well, Jango Fett is the first figure that really raises any questions for me, because not only is it the only figure I've looked at today that I don't own another version of, but it's also something that I'm in two minds about whether to even replace. I'd like the 5POA Mission Series Jango, and also the Class II Slave 1 ship for him to pilot (toys being toys again!) but as I inferred above, Episode II doesn't hold any huge appeal for me. As collecting is becoming affordable and interesting again with both Saga Legends and next year's Rebels, I think it's important to set parameters - and the first of those is to stick to my stated Star Wars focus of collecting Episode III and onwards only. It felt good remembering this when I came within a whisker of picking up the Geonosis Mission Series pack today.

I'll be back on Wednesday and Friday highlighting and justifying the rest of the stuff I'm selling, whilst also thinking out loud about the 5POA vs SA debate, and why I'll never be a customiser...

As always, thanks for reading!

Thursday, 11 July 2013

LoEB: Hake’s Shopping Spree (Redux)

Now, this is a League challenge to get the blogging muscles moving. After a few weeks off I'd planned to take up this week's assignment anyway, but what a great one to return to!

Starts at 99p!
Go on a fictional shopping spree at Hake’s current auction #209 to make your collection a little more amazing.

Oh, and I should mention...

One blog entry will be selected to receive $100 credit to spend at Hake’s!

Welcome back, Extraordinary Bloggers!

I'm going to set a limit of five items, just to make it challenging. Otherwise, y'know - I'd end up getting it all... I'd originally thought about setting a price limit as well, but that was too much. This is supposed to be fun!

OK, first up, the question says 'amazing' - to me that says 'Spider-Man'!

Lot 1
There's not actually a Spidey ring in there, but it's close enough, right?! Besides, it's really not like I'd actually open this if I were fortunate enough to win it. I know, I've proclaimed many times before that toys are meant to be played with, but damn man - this is genuine vintage! TVC need not apply...

Next up, it's a real blast from the past:

Lot 2
Ring Raiders was a brief fad from my childhood that I've never seen mentioned anywhere else, to the point I was questioning its existence. My friend Luke had the pilot (hah!) episode on video, and we collected these toys manically. As I recall there were good guys, who had a large sea-based air carrier, and they flew planes against bad guys. The (toy) planes sat on translucent struts that attached to rings, meaning they could be 'flown' on your hand in a kind of Top Gun/Micro Machines mash up. This provided hours of fun, at least until the next big thing came along; although I'm lacking the time frame to estimate what that would have been...

For more vintage goodness, what if adventure had a name?

Lot 3
That's right, it does! People go nuts over vintage Star Wars cards, but to me this is a far nicer product, and I've never even seen one first hand. I think the vintage Indy figures look great, so charming and fun looking. As a kid I used my POTF2 Han in Carbonite as a substitute, but it was never the same, and the recent Hasbro line? Well, there were highs and lows, let's put it that way.

Fancy seeing the back of the card? OK!

Lot 3

I've documented my love of comics in an older League post, but my heart lies with newspaper strips. Specifically with Calvin and Hobbes, but it was Garfield that taught me to read and my affinity with the medium lives on. Subsequently, this is a must buy:

Original 1971 Peanuts Artwork
Lot 4
Schulz was a true great of cartooning, maybe even the greatest - his work redefined the comic strip landscape, and his humour was, believe it or not, considered quite cutting in the 50s. Without Peanuts we wouldn't have Calvin and Hobbes, Garfield, Mother Goose and Grimm or countless other great strips, or at least have them as we know them. What better way to celebrate such a great talent than to own some original work? Sad as it is to say, it's one thing there won't be any more of.

Last but not least, it's a peculiar item that highlights the kind of behind-the-scenes work I love seeing.

Batman: The Animated Series Promotional Style Guide

Lot 5
The unique animation of Batman: TAS won it a lot of fans, myself included, and was successful enough to warrant a comic book spin-off (kinda like a boomerang) and a Superman series in the same vein. Working on an animated show is my ultimate career aim, and although I'm more on the writing side of production I really enjoy seeing the work that goes into the development of a series like this. That it's Batman is a bonus, but even just seeing a little bit of how it's done makes me feel a step closer to doing it myself.

And how about a glimpse of madness?

Lot 5
The Sinister Six come close, but ultimately this is the best rogues gallery in pop-culture, bar none!

Those are my selections from the auction, but there's so much stuff in there I could easily have missed something. I surprised myself by not picking anything Star Wars related, but when there's items from across the spectrum of pop culture to chose from, why stick with what you know?

Here's what other Leaguers would like to take home...

Random Nerdness has some nice items, including a sketchbook by comic legend John Romita Sr. Do we call him Sr? Or is he just John Romita and JRJR is just Jr? Can we get a confirmation on that?

AEIOU and Sometimes Why hit up another five items and provided a public service to boot...

Shezcrafti makes a mean collage (and we'd get in a bidding war over the Dr. Jones figure).

Branded in the 80s wins my intangible favourite post of the week award, with heart, discipline and Chicken Walkers.

Finally, G.I. Jigsaw is new to the League and signs on with some vintage figure goodness and Wyatt Earp. Good stuff!

That's it from me for this assignment. As ever, thanks for reading!

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Play Arts Kai Dark Knight Trilogy Batman

More than just a Man
Hello, world of high(er) end collectables! If you're as good as my first impressions of the PAK DKR Batman here, I may just stick around...

This is that pre-order I was talking about, and it's pretty incredible. This figure's got fantastic poseability, comes with a great selection of accessories and feels pretty sturdy - I haven't experienced any QC issues as yet (and I'm knocking on wood as I type) - it's without doubt the best Batman I own. Hoping I can get some good pictures with this guy, and maybe one day a Joker to go with him... Everything but my wallet is stoked for this!

Friday, 10 May 2013

LoEB: Deserted Island

league deserted island
Deserted Island Ahoy!
The League assignment this week is:

You are stranded for 10 years on a deserted island. You can take with you the following: One food item (in a never-ending supply), one movie, one game, and one pop culture character. 

This one is easy, right? My favourites from the subjects listed that I also think will endure for a decade. Easy. Ish.


Those of you who know me would know it couldn't be anything else...


I tried to think of alternatives to this, but to no avail. You can't mess with perfection.

Plus snow, right?

This was the toughest, but ultimately it had to be...

Riddler Trophies a Must...
Pop Culture Character

I'll preface this by saying I'm not a sleazy guy. All the same, I'd need help with basic survival skills, and would you rather spend ten years with runaway-dad Indiana Jones, or Lara Croft?

Yep, thought so.
For me that'd be ten years set; all bases covered and a lot of noodling to be getting on with. Sounds a little bit like paradise, actually...

Here's how some other Leaguers would survive:

Retro Toy Safari shares the Empire love and has a genius game suggestion!
The 30ish Year Old Boy and I have a lot in common...
If I could get a food exchange programme going on with Rich at Fortune and Glory (Days), I totally would.
Goodwill Hunting 4 Geeks has an inspired choice of companion(s)!
And Brian's picture at Cool and Collected says it all...

More here!

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

The Batman

And on the subject of the Dark Knight, here's a recent bargain...  

Batman from Mattel's Dark Knight Rises line, bought for a paltry £2.50 from Tesco. The paint on the face is a bit sloppy, but in general it's better than I thought it would be, with a well done soft-goods cape and surprise knee joints making a whopping seven points of articulation! There's better Batmen out there, but this one is mine, and for the price I paid I'm not complaining at all. Now there's someone to watch silently over the toy shelf at night...

Friday, 19 April 2013

The League of Extraordinary Bloggers: First Impressions

I've been a bad leaguer. In fact, I've been such a bad leaguer that I've barely leagued at all! I submitted a LoEB post way back in January, and I've been completely lapse since then; although in fairness my blogging in general has taken a hit as I'm on business end on my Uni course. Whatever the reasons though, it's time to fix things. Time to get back on track. Two birds: meet one stone...

This week's topic is First Impressions: that moment in pop culture that had you saying “Now, that’s how you make an introduction!” -  for me, there was one clear choice...

Here's my Card...
Hands up who doesn't remember the first time they saw The Dark Knight? I would bet that the only people with their arms raised high right now haven't actually seen it - it's impossible for me to think that the scale, the depth and the intensity of this film wouldn't leave an impact on anyone. And everyone who has seen it remembers one humorous, committed, terrifying and intense performance more than any other... Heath Ledger's penultimate and Oscar-winning turn as the Joker.

Now, I'm going to court controversy with this first impressions topic by not picking the very first scene in which we see the Joker at work, the Prologue -

I kill the bus driver.
- But instead, the scene where he announces himself to the Gotham underworld. Why here, exactly? Well, I'm glad you asked! In-story, the bank job is all part of the plan - the Joker setting the wheels in motion, and getting away with it. As a film it's a dramatic and action-filled set-piece that claws the audience in straight away. But the Joker's in disguise for most of it, barely saying a word. It's not until he bursts into the mob meeting, having just stolen all their money, that he puts himself well and truly in the game. And what a way to make an arrival!

A pencil, yesterday.
I'm not a prude but the pencil trick, as much as I guffawed, did make me amazed that TDK got away with a 12A rating. Whatever the certificate though, this scene establishes the difference between the mob bosses, cowering away in the daylight, and the Joker's new brand of anarchic genius. Whether his arrival was truly caused by the Batman or not doesn't matter; with this one ballsy move the Joker firmly establishes himself at the top table.

And, how to make an exit.

As a piece of film-making and as a grand entrance, this scene perfectly pitched the Joker's character and role in the film, and leaves one hell of a mark. It's not the first time we see him, no - but it's the first time we glimpse the moral abyss and wreckless insanity that makes TDK such, dark, horrific fun.

Now, I didn't read any other blog posts before writing this, because I was pretty sure a fellow Leaguer would pick the same film. Was I right? Well, no - but there's more DC out there!

Both Jathniel at Space for Rent and John at The Batcave Toy Room remember the 1978 Superman film fondly. I love the score, and I watched it as a kid, but it's one I'm going to have revisit... 

Chris at Stunt Zombie remembers the first appearance of Doomsday; the creature that came from nowhere to kill Supes back in the 90's. I loved that story as a kid, and seeing those page scans bought back some fond memories!

Han Solo gets his (pre-SE) due over at Retro Toy Safari...

And rounding out the DC, an older Bat-sequel gets the nod (amongst a few other classics) at Pop Rewind.

Thanks for reading!

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