Monthly Archives: February 2014

Bowen Designs Red Skull Action Version

Oh man, I’ve been waiting for this one for a while now. Ever since I got Bowen’s Action Captain America I was hoping that he would have a Red Skull in the works, so when the statue was put up for pre-order on StatueMarvels.com I jumped at the chance to get it. So after the wait how do I think it turned out? Well let’s take a look.

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The box is pretty standard for a Bowen Statue, so nothing new there. It has a great shot of the Skull on all four sides and is pretty easy to reseal if you want to go that route. It’s worth noting that while the Cap statue had a production run of 1500, Ol’ Shmidty here is limited to only 600 pieces so he may be harder to find in the long run.

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The statue itself requires some minor assembly- the hands, body, and base are all separate pieces and just pop together easily. The hands are connected with magnets and fit into the wrists snuggly, and the whole character sits perfectly onto The base with the standard metal peg.

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Fully assembled the Red Skull looks great and the base has so much detail that I could write an entire post about that alone. Take a close look and you can even see a hand sticking out of the rubble beneath the Skull…poor guy. I will admit that I think the face sculpt is a bit off, but that may just be due to my personal preference for Jack Kirby’s design. I would have much preferred something closer to the old Bowen Red Skull bust, but overall the face does still convey the anger and ferocity it should, so I won’t beat on it too much. The Red Skull is holding a gun in his left hand and a dagger in his right. Both look great and the silver on the dagger really pops, but the star here is definitely the gun which has an awesome translucent orange blast effect attached to simulate gunfire. I know some people were asking if it was removable, but I gave it a little tug and it doesn’t seem like it’s going anywhere so that may cost it points if you weren’t a fan.

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The paint is exactly what we’ve come to expect from Bowen- those eyes are absolutely terrifying. The boots have a worn-leather look to them and have a good blend of browns and blacks, with the majority of his outfit done in the classic green. The armband is red with a black circle, but due to an agreement with Marvel there is nothing in that black circle, so you may need to add your own swaztika (if you really feel the need). And then that base…my god. I can’t even begin to describe how fantastic everything on that base is.

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One of the big selling points for this statue is that it was a companion piece to the already-released Captain America action statue. I think it both hits the mark in that regard while simultaneously missing it entirely. The base matches up design-wise and the colors are correct, but there’s just no way to match the two bases up together so they sit flush. Cap’s base has the triangle shield shape and the Skull sits atop a curved hourglass…so one might think they can match up, but trust me. They don’t.

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Likewise, the statues themselves are posed to sit together perfectly, you can really make it look as though the Skull is dodging Cap’s fist of liberty, but since it’s Classic Red Skull vs Modern Cap it does look a little strange. To a casual collector it probably isn’t a big deal, but to a hardcore Cap fan (hi) it may be a bit annoying.

Overall I like the piece and I think the good outweighs the bad here. Taken alone I think the piece looks fantastic and really captures the malevolence of the Red Skull in both sculpt and paint. Together with Cap he’s just ok, but still pretty cool. If your a fan of Cap, or just Bowen in general, I recommend picking it up while you still can.

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How Stranger got his groove back

Been a while since I drew anything, but I was feeling creative today and decided to give it a go.

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Some Jack Kirby love. No matter how my tastes may change, I absolutely love drawing in the style of the King.

IMAG1844And then I finished up a Tomb Raider piece I’d been working on for a while. Really happy with this one.

That’s it for now. Maybe I’ll throw something else together before the night is up.

Marvel Minimates Wave 54 in stores now!

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Wave 54 of DST’s Marvel Minimates hit stores this past week and man do I love this set! Look at all that Cap goodness! Finally good to get some new faces like Falcon and Baron Strucker in minimates form, and huzzah for more army builders! (Hail Hydra!) Another great thing about this wave is that the Cap and Redbot Skull set comes with an extra hand to do this-

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Finally! A Cosmic Cube! I gave it to my old Skull ‘mate, but the black hand works with the Winter Soldier or even your movie Skull, so this is a great accessory to get!

Also be on the lookout for the Toys R Us counterpart wave which features a variant Winter Soldier…which I have been unlucky in finding.

Masters of the Universe Classics Unnamed One Revealed? Possible Spoiler

So I’m going to start this with a HUGE Spoiler Warning…

SPOILER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT! SPOLIER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT!

Bells and whistles and sirens and red, flashing lights!

DO NOT CONTINUE READING IF YOU WANT TO BE SURPRISED IN MARCH!

Okay, so that should just about cover it.

A picture popped up on 4-chan this weekend supposedly originating from a Chinese Website (with no link or name given) that appears to be the super-secret 2014 Club Eternia Subscription Exclusive UNNAMED ONE action figure for the Masters of the Universe Classics line. The photo quickly made its way to He-Man.org and then Mattycollector.com, hitting the forums with a lash of negative feedback that would sink an optimistic ocean liner. Before I continue to my own thooughts on the character, let me stress that this figure was IN NO WAY CONFIRMED by Mattel, and Scott “Toy Guru” Neitlich would neither confirm nor deny its validity, he would only say this:

“Spoiler pictures, speculation, customs and everything, we are going to wait until after he ships to make any comments. Some fans want to be surprised so mum is the word until after March.”

Pretty standard answer from Mattel’s MOTU Brand Manager.

I will say that based on what I know of UNO (as the Unnamed One will  be called from this point onward) this figure seems legit. What we know about the figure based on official word from Toy Guru and the Four Horsemen:

  • Almost 100% new tooling with only reused arms
  • 4 Accessories- alternate head, energy blast, staff and another to be revealed
  • Includes mini-comic pack-in
  • Will have a 200X feel to the design
  • Is a brand new character- not a variant or repaint

What we know about the CHARACTER based on what has been revealed in the old mini-comics, the new mini-comics, and what TG has revealed:

  • Original evil in Eternia
  • From the oldest race in the universe
  • Attempted to steal the Power of the Universe (forcing the Trollan Overlords to put it into hiding)
  • Created the Snake Men through Genetic Manipulation
  • Would be a major threat in the “Son of He-Man” storyline

So again, armed with that knowledge I’m inclined to believe this figure is legit. So with that said feel free to jump on past yet another spoiler warning and read my thoughts on this figure, or just scroll down to the bottom of the post to see the image.

SPOILER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT! SPOLIER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT!

Okay, so here are my thoughts on this guy. I love this toy. I really do hope it turns out to be legit simply so I can get my hands on this thing. I know it isn’t what a lot of people were expecting, but honestly a lot of the theories I read were things I’d hate (Snake Mountain Man? Really?) so I’m psyched that we get something that isn’t a ridiculously, overly demonic monster.

Instead we get an evil Trollan. Makes sense since he is supposed to be the original evil of the universe and (according to Classics mythos) the Trollans are the most ancient race in existence. I think the colors really pop and the purple and blue harkens right back to Ol’ Bonehead. A good choice in my opinion, as color has always played a big part in toy collecting. Another thing I love about the colors are that they are in line with what we’ve seen from Gorpo, the original concept for Orko turned He-Man.org mascot. Many speculated months ago that Gorpo was UNO, but Eric from the Four Horsemen shot that down stating that this character wasn’t Gorpo…though until I read the bio I have to tend to believe he was leading us on the wrong path.

I’ve read people complaining that UNO should have been an enormous monster, but I don’t know that I agree. Knowing that (storywise) UNO is a scientist who genetically engineers an army of Snake Super-soldiers, it might make more sense that he’ small in stature. Well, despite this, I can safely say that based on the picture the character looks bigger than Orko, and since he represents the standard Trollan height, UNO still does tower over him, and from a Trollan standpoint he might look really menacing. Many were stating that they can’t see Skeletor or Hordak answering  to, as he’s been called on the forums, “Drag Queen Orko”, and neither can I, but I don’t remember seeing anything state that UNO was the grand mac-daddy behind everything evil in the universe. He was the first evil, he was the catalyst for evil, but it was never said that he was the one calling all the shots. At least not that I remember.

Since he’s a Trollan, I would assume that his 4th and final accessory would be a much-needed flight stand similar to what Orko got (and what Kowl should have gotten), but we can clearly see that he comes with a golden staff (with a snake wrapped around it) and a GIGANTIC green energy blast that he can’t possibly hold. Some have speculated that this might actually be his flight stand, so that would make more sense given the size of it. At the bottom of the package, under the Son of He-Man sticker, we can see the blue ears poking up from the second head. Possibly an unmasked face? Again, people are hoping for a face that is similar to that of Snake Mountain’s hideous ALF-looking carving. Personally I don’t care since I plan on displaying him with his hood and scarf…well, provided this turns out to be real.

All together I like this toy, and I’ll gladly display him floating above my Snake Men to shout out commands. I really want to read his bio and see just what his deal is- I’ve got my fingers crossed that he doesn’t turn out to be the atrocity that was DC’s “Dark Orko” garbage. I’ll take him as a brand new character, and a worthy addition to the MOTUC line-up. Now, with all that having been said:

SPOILER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT! SPOLIER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT!

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Casey Jones and the Case of the Missing Paint Apps

Finally was able to get my hands on a new TMNT Casey Jones figure this morning, and while I think it looks really cool and is an interesting take on the character, I think I might actually hate this toy.

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What would have been a great toy is absolutely ruined by cut paint apps! Now I know Playmates has been cutting costs with their Turtle line by skimping on paint, but usually its not that big of a deal. You loose some design or detail along the way (Splinter was hit by this cost-saver as well) but I don’t think it ever actually made me want to cry yet. All that changed with Casey.

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Look at that prototype pic! White! Red! Details! There’s actually some color on this! Compare that to the gray, gray, and black toy we got and you can clearly see why I’m upset. I love Casey, and I love the new Turtles show (my wife and I absolutely adore the teenage antics) so I picked him up anyway and he’ll be added to the giant monster sewer playset, but I can’t help but feel disappointed over what should have been a great toy.