USA Today has a pretty good article up on the success of Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. It’s filled with quite a few newsworthy items. While most folks seem to be most excited about the news that Season 2 will give us a 1-hour special reuniting the original voiceactors in the roles of the four Turtles (which, by the way, is really cool news!), I’m more excited about another announcement.
It’s been a while since I’ve done a Round-Up post. There’s been a lot of toy news heading into Toy Fair 2013, so I figured now was as good a time as ever to bring this column back. So here are some of the noteworthy pieces of toy news for the past week:
Update: Well, it’s official! MTV Geek has now posted new images of Bebop and Rocksteady, along with several other new images of other TMNT toys, and a video walkthrough! You can check them all out here!
Original: MTV Geek posted a few pictures to Twitter this morning, seemingly showing off portions of Playmates’ display being prepared for next weekend’s New York International Toy Fair. Seen in this display is, what appears to be, the Classics Bebop & Rocksteady figures!
Now, this can’t necessarily be considered a true reveal since it hasn’t “officially” been stated by Playmates yet, but I think it’s safe to say we’re looking at the upcoming Classics versions of Shredder’s duo.
Personally, I feel like these guys don’t look quite as cartoon accurate as the four Turtles do. Something seems off with their shapes, almost as if they are slightly stylized. Then again, this isn’t the best angle, so it may just be the photo. We definitely need to see some more photos of their head sculpts, especially from the side angle. But those pics will be hitting the net very soon, I’m sure. After all, Toy Fair is only a little over a week away, and yours truly will be there. I’m anxious to check them out in person.
So, what are your early impressions of Bebop and Rocksteady?
Like many collectors out there, Star Wars figures played a big role in me becoming a collector. I have always joked that Star Wars was sort of the “gateway drug” of toy collecting. While not true for everyone, it seems like many folks out there started their toy obsession with one of Hasbro’s (or Kenner’s) 3.75″ heroes from that galaxy far, far away.
Eventually, it just got to be too much for me. For the most part, I still really like the figures Hasbro has been releasing. But I turned from a die-hard Star Wars collector to a casual collector once I started getting more heavily involved in other toy lines. There were just so many Star Wars figures, many of which were variants of variants, that I just could no longer keep up.
I’ve often said that the one thing that could bring me back in to buying Star Wars figures regularly again would be a really well-done 6″ scale line of figures.
Well, I guess it’s time to say goodbye to my money.
Hasbro has officially announced the Star Wars Black Series, a line of 6″ scale, highly detailed and articulated action figures based on the heroes and villains from Star Wars! The line kicks off this year with 8 figures priced at $19.99 each, and will include characters such as Luke Skywalker in his X-Wing gear and Darth Maul.
That one image of the Luke figure already has me drooling! I cannot wait to see more!
So, how about you guys? Excited? Rather stick with the 3.75″ line? Indifferent? Sound off!
After years of the toy collecting hobby being pretty much ignored by mainstream television, we suddenly have two shows that focus almost directly on it. But are they doing it the right way, or are they just helping to give the hobby a bad name to those who are not involved?
Honestly, I don’t really know the answer to that question. That’s why I’m bringing this discussion up with YOU!
By now I think it’s no secret that there has been a lot of discussion on the future of Mattel’s Masters of the Universe Classics line, which all started because of a post by Scott “ToyGuru” Neitlich stating that subscription sales were down, and therefore MOTUC may potentially be “on the chopping block.” This thread on He-Man.org sums up everything said by ToyGuru relating to this issue nicely in the first post.
Many of you have been contacting me via e-mail, PM, Twitter, Facebook, etc asking for my opinion on this situation, and/or asking me to relay messages to Scott. I feel I must apologize that I have stayed pretty quiet on this whole thing so far. I didn’t want to jump the gun. I wanted to get as much information as possible on this whole thing before I made any sort of comments. After talking with Toyguru on a recoding of the Roast Gooble Dinner podcast for a few hours this past weekend, I finally broke my silence and started posting updates and thoughts.
San Diego Comic Con is very quickly approaching! With that, as always, comes a slew of limited addition, pricey, must-have-because-we-can’t-resist exclusive toys! So naturally, that’s the main focus of this week’s Round-Up.
- Action Figure Xpress currently has all of their exclusives available for Pre-Order right now. This will allow you to pay now, and then simply pick-up at SDCC. Among the items available at their booth are the Icon Heroes He-Man Power Sword Letter Opener, the Battle Beasts MiniMates 2-Pack, and this newly revealed box set of ThunderCats MiniMates!
- Mezco has announced their full list of SDCC Exclusives. Some of theirs I find very exciting this year, such as the metallic Earthworm Jim figure and the GitD 14″ Mumm-Ra.
- In case you missed the big news last week, Hasbro officially announced the return of Jem and the Holograms at this year’s SDCC! Partnering with Integrity Toys, Hasbro is kicking the line off with a high-end collectible doll of Hollywood Jem! I was pretty excited about this at first, but then I saw the Truly Outrageous price tag of $125! Ouch! Still, I’m happy for the die-hard Jem fans out there.
- Not exclusives, but still worth mentioning. Lou Scheimer, founder of Filmation, is making his last convention appearance with a panel at SDCC! I’m really bummed I’m going to miss this, as my flight gets in at the same time this panel starts. Also worth noting, Toy Masters, the documentary about the creation of Mattel’s Masters of the Universe toy line, is screening at SDCC as well. However, I’m going to miss this one as well, as the screening takes place during the He-Man.org Power Party. Unfortunate scheduling, there.
- MattyCollector just kicked off their SDCC’s Most Wanted sale. I’m not sure why they called it that, as it doesn’t really have anything to do with current SDCC exclusives. But there are a lot of items re-listed, in case you missed anything.
- Speaking of Matty, the MattyPalooza panel is Friday the 13th at noon EST. Mattel will be revealing new figures for next year, including MOTUC Mosquitor! On top of that, they are introducing a brand new subscription line for next year. Any guesses on what it might be? My money is on Back to the Future…but that’s just a guess.
That wraps it up for now! i’m sure there will be more SDCC tidbits as we get closer to the show. If so, I’ll post them here! Stay tuned!
Have you ever gone to a garage sale or a flea market hoping that you might just stumble upon something incredible to add to your collection? A find that could be considered almost robbery, because you got such an amazing deal on a piece that goes for way more money than you’d ever pay online? A find that fills your toy collector heart with much joy and pride?
The answer is yes. Yes you have. At least, I’m willing to bet you have. I have certainly been in that position many times, but never had the luck that I always dreamed of. That was until a week ago, when I stumbled upon the Rummage Sale from Heaven.
Welcome to The Roundup, a new feature here on Pixel-Dan.com that will allow me to give some quick shout-outs, plugs, and just mention something toy related that caught my attention that may not necessarily warrant a full write-up. Here’s what’s on tap for this week’s roundup:
- - My good friend James “BustaToons” Eatock has announced the winning cover for the upcoming reprint of his Unofficial Guide to He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. He will be announcing the pre-order soon as well. This is quite an amazing resource, so if you missed out on it the first time make sure you jump on the reprint!
- - Poe Ghostal, another friend of mine, has conducted an interview with yours truly along with several other well-known toy reviewers to ask the tough question: How does receiving free samples from toy companies affect the reviews? I know this is a topic many will be interested in reading about, and hope that my answers are both well-received and make for a good read. Poe’s introduction is up now, and each individual interview will follow.
- - Over the weekend, Hasbro announced yet another San Diego Comic Con exclusive: The Avengers Hellicarrier playset that is over 4 foot long! Now we saw the Hellicarrier playset back at New York Toy Fair, but to my knowledge it has never actually hit retail stores. Now it’s almost a foot longer than before and is exclusive to SDCC. It will sell for a whopping $129.99, and surely be impossible to get home if you flew in. It also includes figures of Captain America and Maria Hill, though form the pictures they seem comic-styled and not movie-styled. Drat…I was hoping for the first-ever action figure of Robin Sparkles.
- - Reminder that Friday is Matty Day. It’s a big month, with 3 MOTU Classics Figures, another Voltron Lion, and a DCUC figure! Hope everyone has the funds ready to spend!
- - Non-toy related, but The Video Game Years 1979 Part 1 was posted over the weekend at RetrowareTV.com. I’m very happy to be a part of this very professional looking show. My hats off to the guys over there for all of their hard work on editing it each month. If you haven’t already, make sure you check it out!
That’s all I’ve got for this edition! Feel free to discuss below!
Update: Well, the plot thickens. ToyNewsI.com has just put up an article stating that they contacted Bandai asking about the rumors surrounding the demise of the line. Bandai states that they are still the master toy license holders for ThunderCats, and that they are currently focussing on rolling out product outside of the US.
That’s not a terrible amount of info, but at least we know Bandai hasn’t lost the license…yet. I’m still very interested to see how this all plays out, as I still find it highly unusual that Bandai hasn’t released or even shown us any new ThunderCats product since late last year.
Original Post: The future of the ThunderCats has been a hot topic as of late, and it seems to be really heating up.
The general consensus about the Bandai toy line has been that it’s in trouble. Ever since Toy Fair in February, where Bandai didn’t show off anything new for the brand, most collectors got the impression that the toy line was coming to an end.
The hot topic in the world of He-Man right now is the recent post by Scott “Toyguru” Neitlich stating that there will be a “dramatic” price increase on the 2013 Masters of the Universe Classics line.
Fans are nervous about this bit of news, worrying that we may see prices as high as $30 and $40 per figure. Personally, I feel that Scott using the word “dramatic” was a poor choice here. I don’t imagine the prices will honestly be any higher than $22-$25 per figure.
Keep in mind that the price hike is not by any means new information. We’ve known this since around the beginning of the year, and even discussed it with Scott on an episode of the Roast Gooble Dinner podcast.
I don’t like the high prices of toys either. In fact, I’ve often commented on how I hate how much toys cost these days. But I absolutely understand that as the years go by, the cost of living goes up, the cost of raw materials goes up, and the cost of products we purchase go up. We’ve honestly been lucky the prices have stayed the same since 2008 until now.
I understand there are quality control circumstances with this line that there is no excuse for. But in the grand scheme of things, I understand the price increase. And as long as it stays at the $22-$25 price point, I’m still good to buy.
So my question to all of you is this: what’s your limit? We all collect for different reasons. For me, MOTU is my first love when it comes to toys, and I would drop everything else I collect before I drop MOTU. But that’s not the same for everyone. So, at what point do you give up on buying MOTUC? What price is “too high?” Discuss!
Thanks to a plug by my friend Poe Ghostal, I found this incredibly cool site that I felt I also needed to share. PocketPowerToys.com is a site dedicated completely to the Sega Pocket Power toyline that was released by Tyco in the late 80′s /early 90′s.
I remember always wanting many of these as a kid. Especially that Glo-Bones. Unfortunately, I never had him or most of the toys in this unique toy line. However, it turns out that I did have one, and I never even knew it was part of this line. At least, I didn’t remember that it was part of this line.
Mattel has finally revealed their 2012 San Diego Comic Con exclusives. Fans have been chomping at the bit for quite some time, speculating on what we may be seeing.
The goofy looking trio you see above is the Masters of the Universe Classics exclusive known as Vykron. At least, the barbarian guy is Vyrkon. I’m unsure yet if the other two have been given official names. But in a nutshell, it’s one figure that includes three outfits: a barbarian, a military man, and a space man.
For those in the know, you will immediately recognize what this is. But it seems that there are a lot of fans and collectors out there that are completely thrown off by this exclusive. Many seem to not know what these odd looking figures represent.
The debate over the reversed forearms on the upcoming MOTU Classics Stinkor has been a very hot topic among fans over the past week. This thread on He-Man.org is a prime example of how fans are reacting.
Last week I posted a comment directly from Mattel where they stated that the arms were reversed on purpose. Mattel says this was a decision from the in-house design team in an effort to make Stinkor “pop” and differentiate him from other figures who utilize the finned forearms.
Mattel has stuck by this statement, as many questioned them on the MattyCollector.com forums. After similar mistakes happened with reversed parts on figures like Roboto and King Hsss, its understandable why fans may be having a hard time accepting Mattel’s statement as truth.
Yesterday, the Four Horsemen chimed in via their Twitter account, stating:
“We haven’t seen a production version yet so we really can’t comment yet, but we can’t imagine why they would be switched.”
In my opinion, this statement from the Four Horsemen does not prove that Mattel is outright lying about their decision like many fans are claiming. I feel that all this proves is that The Four Horsemen did not intend Stinkor’s forearms to look that way. We already knew this, considering we saw the original prototype at Power-Con, and the forearms were correct.
Now, I am not at all defending Mattel’s decision on this, so don’t get me wrong. I agree that it seems incredibly odd to swap parts for the sake of swapping them, especially when it throws off the anatomy. I’m just saying that the Horsemen have only stated that they also don’t know why Mattel made the decision to swap them, if they did indeed purposely do so.
The debate continues to heat up, so it’ll be interesting to see where it goes. What do you think? Was this a QC issue? Or do you believe this was a decision by Mattel design, albeit an odd one?
Yesterday I made the trip up to the Chicago area to attend the Kane County Toy & Doll Show. If you’ve never been to a toy show before, think of it as a Flea Market, but the only items being sold are toys and dolls. The show at the Kane County Fairgrounds happens twice a year, and is one of the larger shows I have ever been to. I hadn’t been able to go to this one in over a year, so I was pretty excited to head up there.
I think one of my favorite things about going to toy shows like this isn’t necessarily what I find to purchase, but more what I get to see. Sometimes these shows offer up an opportunity for you to get a good look at some toys that are considered rare, or are just so expensive you may never have a chance to actually own them. Case in point: one booth had a vintage MOTU Megator.