Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Comic Book Pick: 6/29/16
This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
GHOSTBUSTERS INTERNATIONAL #6
Publisher: IDW PUBLISHING
(W) Erik Burnham (A/CA) Rachael Stott
There's something strange going on in Puerto Rico, and the FBI wants it investigated! Egon Spengler joins Kylie Griffin and FBI Special Agent Mel Ortiz on the Isle of Enchantment to chase down a gruesome ghoul that could be even worse than it appears! A special stand-alone issue featuring the artwork of British phenom Rachael Stott (Star Trek, Doctor Who)!
Item Code: APR160493
In Shops: 6/29/2016
Monday, June 27, 2016
Skybox Basketball Cards 90-91
Do you remember Skybox basketball cards? They were unlike anything sports card collectors had seen before. They were the future of trading cards in 1990. Computer graphics! Candid pictures! Complex stats! They had me at computer graphics. Before these cards came out in 1990 most cards had a boarder and a picture of the featured player. Skybox upped the game and made each card a piece of art with crazy digital backgrounds and orange radiating basketballs with speed trails. Every card seemed like it's own highlight clip. There were 2 series that came out that year. 300 cards in Series 1 and 123 cards in series 2. Each pack contained 15 cards. That is huge compared to today's 5 card packs! Let's take a look at those breathtaking futuristic robo-cards from 1990:
Soak it in. Every star patterned, swirly, old school logo, action packed inch of it. Aren't they amazing? And that's just the front of the cards. The backs were a whole other level of craziness to behold!
Mookie Blaylock, Tim Hardaway and Pervis Ellison look like they just got their pictures taken by the third grade photographer on school photo day. The A.C. Green picture is just glorious. Danny Ferry in Italy...priceless!
Along with NBA Hoops cards, I collected these like crazy. My favorite card out of the 423 set was of course Michael Jordan! I didn't pull him from these packs, but I do have one in my collection. I hope you enjoyed this trip down the strange, dark alley of 90s sports trading cards. They may not be worth much today, but the memories of ripping a Skybox pack open are worth a lot to me.
Friday, June 24, 2016
Ghostbusters: Ecto Minis Part 2
Picked up a few more Ghostbusters: Ecto Minis blind bags at Wal-Mart recently in hopes of finding a Terror Dog. Like I said in a past post, I was hesitant to buy these because of the price and size of the figures. When I did finally pick some up, I was very happy I did. The sculpts were on point, the paint job was excellent and they all have some sort of Glow-In -The-Dark feature to them. I liked them so much, that I bought some more. Here's what lurked inside the packs I picked up:
Egon Spengler from the GB Classics. He has glow in the dark glasses! I was glad to pull this figure. It has a soft spot in me because of the recent passing of Harold Ramis. Really miss his style of humor.
Jillian Holtzmann from the 2016 Ghostbusters. Once again, she has glow in the dark glasses. Looks like I pulled the 2 scientists from the group. Only complaint about this figure is that it seems too fragile. Probably because the girl buster figs are a lot thinner than the rest of them? Otherwise it is a nice pull.
Finally! I got the Terror Dog! I am saying this is the Louis Tully version. So excited for this guy. They never made a Terror Dog toy in the original Real Ghostbusters line and I missed picking up the NECA toys that were released in 2004. Now I finally own a minion of Gozer!
In the end, I am EXTREMELY HAPPY with what I got from these Ghostbusters: Ecto Minis packs. We'll see if I pick up anymore, since I finally got what I was hunting for. I would like to grab the Ecto Plasm can with the girl version of Slimer though? Yes, that is the 30th Anniversary Ghostbusters soundtrack on vinyl in the background!
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Super Mario: Profile of a Plumber
If you were alive in 1985, you were playing Super Mario Bros. on the NES. stomping on Goombas, dropping Bowser into lava and finding Warp Zones. This was pre-internet, so one of the only ways to find out the most valuable game secrets was by word of mouth. Sometimes these tips were total crap other times they were as valuable as gold. Who would have thought that over 30 years later these Italian plumber Brothers from Brooklyn would still be as popular and recognizable all over the world. Back in the 80s you had Mario's face on everything from t-shirts to fruit snacks and today you can still find him on...t-shirts and fruit snacks. Looking around my house, I guess I didn't realize how much stuff I owned with the Super Mario branding on it. Here are a few selections from the collection:
World of Nintendo: 8-Bit Mario (JAKKS Pacific, 2015)
Happy Meal: Mario Ball (McDonald's, 2006)
Mario Kart R/C Racecar (Tomy, 2010)
Super Mario Bros. Movie Card Box (Skybox, 1993)
Super Mario Candy Filled Barrel (Au'some Candy, 2013)
Nintendo Comics System: Gameboy #1 Comic (Valiant, 1990)
Mario is such an endearing character. I loved reading the Nintendo comics from Valiant. These included Mario, Legend of Zelda & Captain N: The Game Master. I used to study those books, looking for recognizable characters. Ohhh, there's a Shy Guy! The art was great, the stories were fun and the characters are classic. Someone should really look into putting out a collected version of these comics sometime soon. I would pick that up in a second! Maybe this will happen around the same time they re-release Nintendo Cereal System?
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Comic Book Pick: 6/22/16
This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
TMNT BEBOP & ROCKSTEADY DESTROY EVERYTHING #4
Publisher: IDW PUBLISHING
(W) Ben Bates, Dustin Weaver (A/CA) Nick Pitarra
After a fight, Bebop and Rocksteady split up and travel separately to different time periods. The Dark Ages, WWI, the Future... no time period is safe!
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Ninja Turtles Classics: Animated Series
These figures came out in 2012 and they are amazing! The Classic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle line was what I had been waiting decades for. A figure that actually looks like the characters from the cartoon series. Yes, I absolutely love my original TMNT action figures from the original Playmates line, but these ones had great sculpts, articulation and the paint jobs were fantastic (except for my Donnie, he seems to have a wandering eye?). The accessories are another great addition to this line. The weapons look great, Mikey finally has a set of Nunchaku with a real chain connecting them and the sewer cover stands work well for display. The price point of $20 each was my only complaint, but I bought them and I am glad I did!
Donatello (Playmates, 2012)
Leonardo (Playmates, 2012)
Michelangelo (Playmates, 2012)
Raphael (Playmates, 2012)
A few years ago Playmates released another line of Ninja Turtle Classics figures based on the 1990 movie by New Line Cinema. I was crazy excited to hear this news...until I actually saw the figures. The sculpts really don't stand out as anything special, the paint jobs are dull and I was just underwhelmed by these. I guess I was expecting them to be more like the original Playmates "Movie Star" line from the 90s. Once again at $20 a piece, I would rather save my money to buy the original toys off ebay.
Maybe it's the nostalgia attached to the 90s versions that makes me prefer them to the new figures?
Monday, June 20, 2016
Advertising Archaeology: Work Edition #1
I work for an affiliate television station and just recently our art director of 34 years retired. It was tasked upon me to clean out his office to make room for a new employee. I was told to keep anything that might have some historical significance to the station. It almost took a week to clean up that office. 34 years is a long time to accrue stuff! Of course some things were not needed for the station, but had some value to me. Here is part 1 of what I dug up:
Newspaper ad layouts for Mr. Belvedere & Sledgehammer from the 1986/87 season
Mr. Belvedere was one of my favorite shows growing up. It seemed so adult at the time and having a kid around my age in the show gave me someone to relate to. Once I found out that Bob Uecker used to play Major League Baseball, my mind was blown! And that theme song...where do I begin! It has to be one of the greatest and catchiest of all time. The piano notes in the beginning alone give me goose bumps. Whatever happened to good ole Mr. Lynn Aloysius Belvedere? I imagine he is with some exotic diplomat, serving blue drinks with umbrellas on a beach with beautiful women right now.
The Cosby Show and Alf/Valerie's Family Ads
We all know what's going on with Mr. Jell-O Jiggler right now, but before all that he was the dad everyone secretly wanted. Delivering babies, reppin Temple University and making hoagies Philly style! This was, is and always will be one of the best shows on television. Not that I knew it at the time but between the laughter and lessons, The Cosby Show broke stereotypes and showed educated, high standing African Americans every week, killing all previous stereotypes and teaching a generation that no matter what race you are, you can achieve your goals and succeed. Did I go to far with this "The More You Know" moment?
The Disney Sunday Movie & Monday Night Football Logos
The Disney Sunday Movie was an opportunity for families to sit together and enjoy a program before a new week full of school, work and sports practices began. This series of films that ran from 1986 to 1988. I wish they would bring this back to ABC. I would watch it with my kids. Some of the standout films I remember recording on VHS and watching over and over and over where: Mr. Boogedy, Robin Hood and Fuzzbucket. Also, who could forget the intros to each movie with Michael Eisner and Mickey Mouse as the hosts?
Television/Radio Age Magazine (August 19th, 1985)
How could I not save this from the trash? I really liked the Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors toy line as a kid, but never really got into the show. Why can't they make theme songs like this anymore? Me and my brother would switch parts to our machines all the time and then argue about whose piece belong to who. Now that I think about it, it was kinda a pain in the ass! The Spider-Man ad on the back was also fun to see. What kid didn't love Spider-Man? This was around the time where Secret Wars was blowing up big time and everyone had at least one action figure to play with in the back yard. I'll get deeper into this magazine in a latter post to show you what's inside.
C-3PO & R2-D2 Coloring page
Found an old coloring book that must have been used as a giveaway at appearances for the station. Other pages included the Ewoks, Super Friends, Scooby-Doo and the Looney Tunes! Fun fact: The opening theme, "Trouble Again" was performed by Stewart Copeland of The Police!
I hope you enjoyed this look back on TV advertising from the 80s. Part 2 is coming soon.
Friday, June 17, 2016
Space Jam...THE WEBSITE!
After watching Space Jam with my kids recently, I checked out IMDB to see if there were any Easter eggs or facts about the movie I may have missed. While reading the entry in the "Did You Know?" section, I saw this, "The movie's original promotional website can still be found online, exactly as it appeared in 1996". I immediately had to check it out and see if this was true. After a quick Google search it was confirmed. This is the same exact site from 1996. Unchanged, not updated and still as AWESOME as ever. Here are a few screen shots:
Space Jam Home Page
Bios of "The Bad Guys"
Daffy Duck Bio
Junior Jam page filled with coloring pages, b-ball tips & more!
Behind the scenes photos
Character Animation Sketches
Downloadable Sound Clips from the movie
Space Jam Soundtrack info
Stellar Souvenirs page with posters, icons & backgrounds
And that's just a few of the features on this website! For a movie that was released over 20 years ago, this website is AMAZING! It has a ton of content, unmatched by most blockbuster movies today! But, why is this site still around? Did Warner Bros. plan on a sequel? Did someone forget the site was still around? Is the president of Warner Bros. a huge Michael Jordan fan? We'll never know, so you need to check it out for yourself before it's gone. Follow this link and be taken back to the days of grunge, gangsta rap and no Star Wars prequels: http://www.warnerbros.com/archive/spacejam/movie/jam.htm
Thursday, June 16, 2016
My Faves: Figure Collection #1
I have a fairly big collection of loose figures from the 80s & 90s. I would like to share a few of my faves with you at this time. Here we go!
Darth Vader (Kenner, 1978)
Darth Vader was one of my favorite characters and figures growing up. He used to have epic battles with Luke Skywalker in my back yard. In those battles, he managed to loose his cape and light saber. I still have my childhood figure somewhere. The figure that is shown, is one that I purchased while working for a small mom & pop toy store in high school. We would purchase collections from people and once a huge Star Wars lot came through the door. It had Yak Face and Ghost Anakin, but the figure that caught my eye was Darth Vader with cape & light saber. I grabbed this guy up and now he is featured prominently on my shelf of greatness!
Garfield (Applause, 1983)
I think every kid in the 80s had one of these figures or one similar to it. Everyone around this time enjoyed Garfield and his friends. I don't know who bought this figure or when we got it, but I loved it! I used to have another version of this figure where Garfield was wearing a winter hat. Don't know where that one went? My guess, mom's attic?
Gargamel & Azrael (Schleich, 2011)
This is a recent release from Schleich in the classic Smurfs style. I believe it came out around the time of the first Smurfs movie? As a kid, I had a ton of Smurfs. Only a few have survived to be in my collection today. One I never had was Gargamel. So to find a figure of him with Azrael on clearance at Barnes & Noble was a surprise. I did have a Gargamel toy as a kid. But not to this scale. It was a wind up toy, where Gargamel would try to catch a moving Smurf in a box. Anyone remember that one? I may have to track one of those down someday?
Thundercats Miniature Lion-O (Kidworks, 1986)
We had a whole army of these little guys in the mid 80s. Me and my brother had Mumm-ra, Ssslithe, Monkian, Vultureman, Tigra and even a mini motorized Thundertank! These toys were perfect to take in the car. Much smaller than the large LJN toys, but pieces were lost easily. Notice how Lion-o is missing his Sword of Omens. These figurines had no articulation, but that didn't stop us from having epic battles for the fate of 3rd Earth!
Pac-Man (K'nex, 2013)
This figure was from the "Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures" K'nex blind bag assortment. A tie in to the cartoon show. We actually own 2 of these because the first one had a leg break off! The kids do play a little rough, but we love Pac-Man enough to go out and buy a new figure. It also helps that these were on clearance for under $1 about a year ago at Toys R Us.
On a final note, enjoy this commercial from 1984 for delicious Pac-Man Pasta from Chef Boyardee! I still remember how the chicken pasta looked and tasted.