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Friday, November 29, 2013

THE WALKING DEAD SERIES 4 - The Governor

The Governor became an interesting figure for me to purchase because he comes with alternate heads. For those of you that love to customize figures, you may want to purchase two Governor figures. This way you can have both versions of him without alternating heads or customize one of the figures into a different character altogether. The choice is yours. Since money is tight these days I just purchased one Governor figure. A decent price at that, around the $13.00 - $14.00 price range, from the same Walgreens store I purchased Carl Grimes and Andrea from.


When it comes to McFarlane toys, they refer to some accessories as items that are sculpted on to a figure or painted on. Notice on the packaging their is notation of his watch and keys. However both his watch and keys are actually sculpted onto the figure and can not be removed. I've always considered accessories to be removable items or any extra items that comes with action figures, and I'm pretty sure many of you do too. This does not seem to be the case with McFarlane toys, although I see no harm with these intentions however.
The Governor comes with two knives, a pistol and an extra head. The alternate head includes an eye patch.

The above pic is The Governor illustrated with all of his accessories, including his alternate head. The small knife is placed in his right pouch, the pistol in his left holster and the big knife in his right hand. I've made a comparison pic between The Governor's two heads to let you decide which look suits him best.
I've also compared his eye patched face to a very well known Marvel character. The original Nick Fury. When I first saw that alternate head the original look for Nick Fury immediately came to my mind, as it probably did to a lot of you out there too.

In the above pic The Governor is being compared to a Toybiz Marvel Legends Nick Fury. So for you customizers out there that may have had thoughts of turning your extra Governor head into an extra Nick Fury figure may have second thoughts after viewing the above comparison pic. As you can see each man's eye patch covers a different eye, The Governor his right eye is covered and for Nick it's his left eye that is hidden.
The Governor , as do most male figures in this toyline, stands at about 5 inches tall. I've posed him next to Andrea and Carl to show you how much taller he is than they. Also I stood him next to Star Wars Black Series One Luke Skywalker, whom is in the 6" scale. I posed him next to Luke to give you an idea of how he looks next to a short stature 6" scale figure. Surprisingly he does not look that much shorter than Luke.


                                                     FINAL    THOUGHTS
(1) ARTICULATION - Articulation is perfect with the exception of the difficulty of displaying into sitting poses, as this same issue addresses just about all of the Walking Dead figures.
(2) STANDABILITY - The Governor stands perfectly with no balance issues.
(3) WHAT I LIKE BEST ABOUT THIS GOVERNOR FIGURE ? His alternate head and weapons. Ability to blend in with short stature 6" scale figures without looking undersized.
(4) WHAT I LIKE LEAST ABOUT THIS GOVERNOR FIGURE ? There is nothing that I dislike about this figure.
(5) WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN DONE TO IMPROVE THIS FIGURE ? Improve sitting ability. Plus his gun does not fit all the way down into his holster, so a wider holster would have been nice.
(6) GRADING  SCALE - On a scale of 1 to 10 I give The Governor an 9.0. The minus is for the difficulty displaying into a sitting pose. Other than that he is a great action figure with cool accessories.
(7) FINAL  ANALYSIS - The main selling point for me with The Governor is the alternate head. As I mentioned earlier the extra head almost makes me want to purchase an extra figure. Just to display him with both heads. Plus if you do purchase two Governor figures that'll give you another extra head. And with all those extra heads you customizers can have a field day creating different characters. I highly recommend you purchase a Governor figure or figures for the above mentioned reasons.
 To purchase a Governor figure from Amazon.com , you may click here THE WALKING DEAD SERIES 4 - THE GOVERNOR ACTION FIGURE
                 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Tribute to THANKSGIVING . Action Figure Style - Some highlights of 2013 Macy's Thanksgiving Parade plus a flashback.

No toy review here. Just a few pics and highlights from the 2013 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade involving characters that have action figures of themselves. Of course all of these characters did not start as action figures. Some of them debuted as comic book or cartoon characters rather than action figures. However at some point in their existence they ended up becoming action figures anyway. I was not in New York City by the way. I simply just stood in front of my television and took pictures with my camera, with no flash. Here's a look at some of the characters at the parade.
             





         As you can see there were floats of Spider-Man and Buzz Lightyear from the Toy Story franchise. Power Rangers, Ninja Turtles and ( not pictured ) Smurfs also made an appearance . Here's a small video clip of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle appearance.
video
If you want more video footage you can go to Youtube to find footage from the pics above. Also if you may not know, there was a Masters of the Universe float at the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade back in 1986. Here's a link to a Youtube clip with Wheel of Fortune host Pat Sajak introducing the float MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE MACY'S THANKSGIVING FLOAT 1986.     I thought it was kind of hilarious when Sajak referred to the float as frightening.
There you have it folks. Action Figure Imagery Toy Reviews Tribute to Thanksgiving . HAPPY THANKSGIVING AND MANY MORE EVERYONE !!! GOD BLESS !!!

Monday, November 25, 2013

THE WALKING DEAD SERIES 4 - ANDREA

I purchased Andrea from the same Walgreens store that I purchased Carl Grimes from. Here's where the height scale becomes a problem. Since Carl Grimes is a kid anyway, I had no problem with the figure being small. A majority of the male Walking Dead figures around around exactly 5 inches tall. Almost perfect to pose next to 6" scaled figures. But when it comes to the female Walking Dead action figures, they stand at a slight shade over 4 inches. This is somewhat disappointing, the height of the female figures. I wish the female figures were slightly over 5 inches and the male figures be right at or near six inches. Other than the displeasure of the figure's height, I am pleased with Andrea.

Although the packaging makes notation that Andrea comes with three accessories, she actually comes with four. They are (1) a pitchfork , (2) a pistol , (3) a rifle , and (4) a vest . My favorite accessories of hers are her pitchfork and her vest. Especially the pitchfork, since it is such a rare accessory rarely seen with any action figure character. If you do not want to pose Andrea with the pitchfork , the only action figure I can think of off the top of my mind representing a farmer would be any WWE Hillbilly Jim action figure. Posing Andrea's pitchfork with him would be neat since he does represent a farmer.
I was not excited about her pistol or rifle at all, since guns come with soooo many action figures. Thousands if not millions of action figures throughout the history of toys come with some type of gun accessory. Vests on the other hand are nothing new either, but they are kind of rare just a little. Not too many action figures come with a removable vest. As you can see in the pics below, Andrea's pitchfork is almost as tall as herself.


As I mentioned earlier, although I rarely get excited over gun accessories , I do like them as far as how realistically detailed they are, and the fact that they provide various display options with action figures. As you can see you have the luxury of having Andrea hold her rifle with one or two hands, and having her pistol tucked inside her holster attached to her right upper thigh. However it will take a bit of work from you to try to pry her hands open to get her to hold the rifle. Good luck with that though, as you can see I just simply laid the rifle across both of her wrists when displaying her holding the gun two handed.

As you can see Andrea's vest is not packaged with her wearing it. You will have to place it on her after you remove her from the packaging. And it is not a simplified task. It's somewhat of a struggle getting it on her but you can do it the more effort you put into it. To put the vest on my Andrea figure, I simply raised both of her arms upwards in the air over her head. I then popped the head off. Struggled a bit to squeeze her arms together, putting the vest over her shoulders one sleeve at a time. Once I got the vest on, I popped her head back onto her body. I think she looks cooler with the vest on than she does without it, but I'll let you be the judge of that with the comparison pic below.
                                                             FINAL   THOUGHTS
(1) ARTICULATION - Other than the difficulty of placing her in a sitting pose, the articulation is nice and decent everywhere else. Mcfarlane Toys did a nice job of using ball riveted joints for smooth movement.
(2) STANDABILITY - In order to get Andrea to stand properly without falling, just lean both her back and her legs back just a little.
(3) WHAT I LIKE BEST ABOUT SERIES 4 ANDREA ? Nice facial sculpt, decent articulation , how cool she looks with her vest on. Also I like her vest and pitchfork .
(4) WHAT I LIKE LEAST ABOUT SERIES 4 ANDREA ? I wish she was just a tad bit taller.
(5) WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN DONE TO IMPROVE THIS FIGURE? Simplified sitting pose stances. More height.
(6) GRADING  SCALE - On a scale of 1 through 10 I give Series 4 Andrea an 8.5 . The minuses are for difficulty in displaying sitting poses and for my displeasure with the height of the figure. Still a great action figure though.
(7) FINAL  ANALYSIS - I love this figure. She is nicely sculpted and very well detailed with her blue eyes and the different color striations in her hair. If you look closely at her hair you can see streaks of brown strands mixed with blond. Very nice attention to detail by Mcfarlane Toys. Plus she comes with some nice accessories. If she was a little over 5 inches tall I probably would have given her a perfect 10 in my grading scale instead of an 8.5, as the height of the figure is really truly the only thing that bothers me about it. Other than that flaw she is a perfect action figure.
To purchase The Walking Dead Series 4 Andrea figure from Amazon.com , you may click here The Walking Dead Series 4 ANDREA action figure

Sunday, November 24, 2013

THE WALKING DEAD SERIES 4 - Carl Grimes

I was a bit surprised to see Walking Dead action figures at a local Walgreens store but that's where I purchased a few Walking Dead figures, including this Series four version of Carl Grimes. I was expecting to see these figures at specialty stores such as Toys"R"Us or a local comic book store. However they are a lot cheaper at Walgreens compared to some comic book stores . At some specialty stores these figures sell for around a $19.00 - $20.00 price range compared to a $13.00 through $14.00 price range at Walgreens.In the packaging he looks shorter compared to being loose in my opinion.


If you want to add action figures of children characters to your collection, then Carl Grimes is a decent addition. My only complaint with him individually is that his wrists are made to move backwards / forwards . His hands are posed in a lifting position, a perfect position for holding one of his accessories, such as his keys. Collectively as a unit a majority of the Walking Dead figures are difficult to pose into a sitting position, including Carl himself. As you can see when you remove Carl from the packaging he is just a little under 4 inches tall.
I love the face sculpt on Carl. As you can see he is very well detailed for an action figure below the 6 inch height scale, and so are the other Walking Dead figures. Even though the packaging makes notation of him coming with three accessories, he actually comes with four. They are (1) keys , (2) a small knife,(3) a medical bag, and (4) his cowboy hat. My favorite accessories of his are his hat and keys. Especially the keys, because there are so few action figures that come with a pair of keys as an accessory. A pair of keys is such a rare accessory, for any action figure scale toyline.
However these keys are not your basic house and car keys. These are prison keys, as noted on the packaging. These keys are meant for prison doors, dungeon doors,etc. and you can easily tell because basic house and car keys are not quite as large as prison keys. If you have action figures of police officers or characters dressed as police officers, ( WWE Mattel Big Boss Man figure comes to mind ) then you may want to display these keys with those figures rather then with Carl Grimes.



I tried to see if Carl's hat could fit on some heads of some 6" scaled figures, and apparently the hat appears to be too small as it seems that it was meant for his little head.
Although Carl's bag is not my favorite accessory of his, it is the most interesting one. The reason I say this is because of its mysterious nature, as to what is inside of it ? When you purchase the figure the bag is partially open. However you can use a sharp pair of scissors to open it further like I did to see what's inside. The above pic was as about as far as I could cut, revealing to be what looks like a jug of some sort. It is extremely difficult to try to remove this piece out of the bag because it seems as if it is a part of the bag.
( NOTE ) I do not recommend you do this unless you're curious to see the contents of the bag like I was. Since it was not one of my favorite accessories I did not mind tearing into it to view its contents. However if you like this accessory as one of your favorites than I do not condone this action .
                     As for articulation , the Walking Dead action figures have some of the best head movement.
Carl can easily move his head up and down, and I love the ball riveted joints in the shoulders, elbows, and knees. I think ball riveted joints allow smoother movement of limbs and think that all action figures if not most should have them.
Since he is a child, Carl's upward head movement comes in handy if you want to display him next to 6 inch scaled adult characters from other lines. You customizers out there may want to transform him into just an ordinary kid, as you can see he is the perfect height exactly for just that purpose.
Next to a Star Wars Black 6" Luke Skywalker, he looks as if he could be at least a five year old instead of a teen in my opinion.

                                                            FINAL   THOUGHTS
(1) ARTICULATION - With the exception of two disadvantages, limited wrist movement and difficulty providing sitting poses, the rest of the articulation is perfect. Especially the ball riveted shoulders, elbows, and knees. Excellent head movement as well.
(2) STANDABILITY - You will have to work with him a bit to get him to stand properly. However once you find that perfect stance there are no balance issues.
(3)WHAT I LIKE BEST ABOUT SERIES 4 CARL GRIMES ? Nice ball riveted joints for the shoulders, elbows and knees allows for a variety of poses. Nice sculpting of his face , clothing and hair. His keys and his hat.
(4) WHAT I LIKE LEAST ABOUT SERIES 4 CARL GRIMES ? Limited wrist movement and difficulty arranging sitting poses.
(5) WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN DONE TO IMPROVE THIS FIGURE ? Normal all around wrist articulation, improve the ability to put into a sitting pose.
(6) GRADING  SCALE - On a scale of 1 through 10 I give this Carl Grimes figure an 8.5. The minuses are for the limited wrist articulation and the sitting poses difficulty. Despite these two flaws he is still a cool action figure.
(7) FINAL  ANALYSIS - Overall I am pleased with Series 4 Walking Dead Carl Grimes action figure. Despite the two flaws there is a lot to like. Cool sculpt, very well detailed, fun accessories, and he is in the perfect height scale for you customizers that may want to add children characters to your action figure collection. Mcfarlane toys did a nice job with this figure. The best part is that you do not even have to be a fan of The Walking Dead television series to like this figure. If you want to add some children characters to your collection than I recommend you pick up Carl Grimes.
  To purchase this figure from Amazon.com, you may click here The Walking Dead Series 4 - Carl Grimes

Sunday, November 17, 2013

STAR WARS BLACK SERIES ONE - R2-D2

I purchased R2-D2 from the same local comic book store I purchased Star Wars Black Luke Skywalker from. The prices are lower at normal retail stores such as Target than they are at comic book stores. Retail may sell these figures for $19.99 compared to comic shops selling them for $24.99. Luke's droid buddy is a pleasant surprise, both visually and feature wise. Two action features that stand out the most are the extension of his middle leg and compartments that open and close. The compartments opening and closing were the biggest surprise to me. The old Kenner R2 figures never had retractable compartments, way to go Hasbro.



As you can see in the front of the packaging R2 comes with seven accessories, which I assume are tools. Not to mention two wrench like tools located inside his two compartments. Throughout the Star Wars series, R2 comes in handy as an extra helper for storage purposes, such as when an X-Wing fighter is being repaired,etc. Also as you can see that each Star Wars black figure comes with their own individual box art.                   The following pics are comparison shots of size differences between the Star Wars Black
R2-D2 compared to an old 3 inch scale R2. Actually the old R2 is around 2 inches tall and the Black series version is almost right at 3 inches tall. Luke is added to the pictures for more size comparisons.


As you can see in the comparison shots that Stars Wars Black R2 is way more detailed than the previous smaller version, looking a lot more like he jumped straight out of a Star Wars film emerging into plastic. One common feature that both versions of R2 share is the extension of his middle third leg. However the action features are done differently for both figures.
In order to display the third leg of the series black R2 , you must rotate his head in a 360 degree motion to the right. To retract the leg repeat the process this time rotating towards the left.

As I mentioned earlier, I was surprised that R2' s chest compartments can open and close. Just use your fingertips to slightly pull them back, revealing two new tools stored inside him. The tools can be removed and inserted back in,however it will take some work on your part. You may have to use something small such as a toothpick to remove the tools out of the compartments.

As you can see seven of R2's accessories can be seen with him in the packaging. So when you open his compartments that's a total of nine different accessories. Out of all of my reviews, this is the first one where I do not know the names of all the accessories. However, I assume that all of them are tools of some kind and not weapons, since R2-D2 is rarely seen in combat situations.
           Having both X-Wing pilot Luke and R2-D2 this early in this series line is a real nice treat
to us fans from Hasbro. Now all I think to make things even sweeter is to add an X-wing fighter jet to the mix along with CP30 . Not sure if we'll see an X-Wing fighter anytime soon but a six inch CP30 would look great next to this movie styled R2-D on display shelves everywhere.
                                                     FINAL   THOUGHTS
(1) ARTICULATION - You can rotate R2's head in a circular 360 degree rotation. His legs move back, forth, up, down. The foot on his middle third leg moves slightly up and down.
(2) STANDABILITY - No balance issues when standing normally however there is one when you extend his middle leg all the way out. R2 will fall if you stand him straight up with his middle leg extended. You must lean him over to his side to make him stand properly with an extended middle leg.
(3) WHAT I LIKE BEST ABOUT R2-D2 ? His cool action features. Rotating head, extending leg, compartments that open and close. Rollers on the bottom of his feet allow R2 to slide across smooth wood surfaces. And the duplicate movie likeness is a major plus.
(4) WHAT I LIKE LEAST ABOUT R2-D2 ? There is nothing that I dislike about this figure.
(5) WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN DONE TO IMPROVE THIS FIGURE ? If R2 was battery operated, flashing glowing lights along with his beeping sounds would make nice features to add.
(6) GRADING  SCALE - On a scale of 1-10 I give R2 a perfect 10. No flaws with this figure.
(7) FINAL  ANALYSIS - Overall I am pleased with this version of  R2-D2. He was one of the most popular characters when the Star Wars franchise debuted in the 1970s and is one of the best action figures in this Star Wars black series in my opinion. If I were you I'd pose him next to Luke Skywalker on my display shelf, since he spends a lot of time with Luke in the series. Can't wait to get CP30 to pose next to R2, since those two are like the Ernie and Bert of Star Wars, almost always together. ( NOTE ) Some plates on the top of R2's head are removable, however I do not recommend taking them off because they are kind of difficult to re-attach.
       To purchase R2-D2 from Amazon.com , you may click here Star Wars Black Series One R2-D2 at Amazon.com         
     To purchase from Entertainment Earth , you may click here Star Wars Black Series One R2-D2 at Entertainment Earth

Sunday, November 10, 2013

HOT WHEELS - Indianapolis 500 100th Anniversary Indy 500 5 Pack

Even though the name of this site implies to action figures, in general it also applies to anything toy related period. As mentioned in this blog's description. Today I am reviewing over a Hot Wheels set from a few years back. There are some cool looking vehicles in this set and you may want to go to Ebay or Amazon to purchase yourself a set after you read this review. And of course, reviews of vehicles will be different from reviews of action figures. When it comes to vehicles, categories such as articulation and balance issues do not apply. When it comes to Hot Wheels or any miniature car line I just focus on two traits. They are ( 1) how cool looking a vehicle is and (2) the best features of each vehicle.
 There are five vehicles in this pack. First we look at a vehicle called Old # 3. All vehicles will be shown from various angles, left, right, front, back, etc.



The words Indianapolis 500 are neatly painted on the front hood of the car. Although yellow is not one of my favorite colors I still think this is a neat looking vehicle. The car's most noticeable feature is the exhaust pipe on the right side. The pipe is die-cast metal just like the car, as are most Hot Wheel cars or all are a mixture of die-cast metal and plastic parts.
Next up is a vehicle called Chevy Camaro Concept.


This car kind of reminds me of Kitt from the tv show Knight Rider. All it needs is a flashing red light up front and removal of the paint decals in my opinion to be an exact duplicate of Kitt. I love this car. It is nicely done with the Indianapolis 500 100th anniversary logo painted on both passenger and driver doors. I think one of its best features are the transparent yellow tinted front and back windshields. By there being no windows for the passenger and driver sides you can easily peep into the car seeing the dashboard, steering wheel, stick shift and seats.
Next up is a lime green colored F-Racer.


Lime green is one of my favorite colors therefore I think this is one of the coolest vehicles of the pack. This F-Racer is one of those rare Hot Wheels vehicles that has the head of what appears to be a driver. Not many Hot Wheel vehicles have passengers or drivers. I love the design of the wings on both the front and back.The F in F-Racer stands for Formula or sometimes Formula 1 for those of you whom may not have known.
Next up is a vehicle called Greased Lightnin .


This car is kind of odd looking with its unique shape but cool looking at the same time. I love the light blue color of the car and the gold painted exhaust pipes. Reflections can be seen on the pipes and the gold pipes emit a nice shine when exposed to bright light. The yellow tinted windshield is also a nice feature. The odd shape of this vehicle gives it a futuristic feel.
Finally up next is a vintage style fire truck titled Old Number 5.5 .


This looks like one of those old fire truck engines from the 1930s. The types where you'd see old vintage photos of dalmatian dogs sitting in the passenger seat next to a fire man . I love everything about this vehicle. The feeling of nostalgia when viewing it, the ladders, a nice paint job with a neat shade of red, the engines,etc. Firemen tools can be seen on the back if you look very closely and there is even a fireman's hat. The silver parts such as the engine provide reflections and a nice shine under bright light.
Out of all the vehicles in this pack, this is not a racing vehicle by any means. However it is one of the nicest looking vehicles in the pack and probably the most detailed with its unique features I mentioned of earlier.
The following pics are photos of the packaging.



MIB ( Mint in Box ) collectors may be interested in the black and white vintage photos of the Indianapolis 500 pictured on the right side of the packaging. There are some pics that appear to be pictures of some of the cars in this set. Overall I am pleased with every car in this set. This is my first Hot Wheels review and it will not be the last. I plan on reviewing many more Hot Wheel sets in the future. I think Hot Wheels are perfect for both adults and kid collectors. Most adults may buy these cars for display purposes, whereas kids will have fun playing with Hot Wheels because all Hot Wheel vehicles roll fast and smoothly across smooth surfaces. Every car in this set has a mixture of die-cast metal and plastic parts. If you are a Hot Wheels collector I highly recommend this set for your collection.