Friday, June 23, 2017

My Faves: Figure Collection #4

 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. You ready? Here we go!
 Bartman: The Simpsons (Mattel, 1990)
I purchased this figure just recently off ebay for a few bucks in an action figure lot sale. These 1990 Mattel Simpsons figures have been on my wish list for a long time. I remember seeing these on the shelf at toys stores back when I was a kid, but unfortunately for me I chose Beetlejuice toys over them. I am a huge Simpsons fan, so I am always looking for early products from the 90s and these are on the top of my list. Only 8 figures and the "Sofa & Boob Tube" play set were released from Mattel.
Prince Adam: Masters of the Universe (Mattel, 1984)
I was 4 years old when I first laid eyes on this Prince Adam action figure. I remember to this day because I met a friend at the park while my older sisters were playing a soccer game. He brought his Masters of the Universe figures and when he opened his case...out came Prince Adam. I had never seen him before and had to have him. Well, pretty soon my taste in toys changed over to the Thundercats and Ghostbusters and Prince Adam was forgotten. Then there he was, in a thrift store grab bag with some McDoanlds toys and plastic dinosaurs for the low price of $5! I grabbed him up and he stands in a special spot on my shelf of collectables in the basement and will stay there forever!

Snoopy aka Joe Cool: Peanuts (Schleich, 2015)
There is not too much to say about Joe Cool here. He was in the clearance bin at Barnes & Noble after the 2015 holiday season, he looked cool and I picked him up. I am always a sucker for cheap Peanuts merch!
Wilykit: Thundercats (LJN, 1986)
Thundercats ruled my world from 1985-1988. Me and my brother accrued quite a collection of the action figures and even had the Cats Lair and Mumm-Ra's Tomb play sets! I even dressed as Lion-O for Halloween in Kindergarten. We never had this Wilykit action figure though. We had the PVC figure of her that was included with the Cheetara figures in 1985. I stumbled upon this 1986 Wilykit figure by pure luck. I found an old green McDonalds pencil box at Goodwill. It was taped shut, but I could kind of see what looked like action figures inside. I bought the pencil box for a few bucks and opened it when I got home. To my surprise there was Wilykit along with Cheetara, a Mario figure and some Berenstain Bears & Muppet Babies Happy Meal toys. I call that a score!
Lola Bunny: McDonalds Happy Meal Toy (McDonalds, 1996)
The smash hit movie "Space Jam" starring Michael Jordan and the Looney Tunes characters was all over the place in 1996! There were candies, posters, clothing items, video games and best of all a McDonalds Happy Meal dedicated to the film! Not only was this the film debut of his Airness, Michael Jordan, but an all new character was introduced by the name of Lola Bunny. I find these spinning figures at thrift stores all the time for around a quarter a piece. I loved this movie and anytime I see anything Space Jam related out in the wild, I grab it. Still looking to complete this Happy Meal set 20 years after it's release.
If you missed the first few parts of the 20 Years Before 2000 "My Faves: Figure Collection" series you can view them at the links below!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 6/21/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
Not since the twelve labors of Hercules has a Greek warrior faced as great a danger and as destructive a peril as the Tasmanian Devil! And the bonus Looney Tunes backup story features DC characters with story by Tony Bedard and art by Ben Caldwell!
(W) Antony Bedard (A) Barry Kitson, Ben Caldwell (CA) Byron Vaughns
SRP: $4.99
Synopsis provided by

Monday, June 19, 2017

Fathers Day 2017 Recap!

I know I'm a little late, but I hope all the dads out there had an amazing Fathers Day this past weekend! I know my kids did a great job of planning out my day and made me some fantastic art for my office!
My day started off by watching cartoons with the kids. Each kid and myself got to pick one show to watch. The kids selected LEGO Marvel Superheroes: Maximum Overload, Pokémon XY and Barbie: Life In The Dream House.
My pick was Troll Hunters! This DreamWorks cartoon is a Netflix original adapted from the books written by Guillermo del Toro. I love this cartoon! It features a great cast that includes Anton Yelchin, Kelsey Grammer, Ron Perlman and Tom Hiddleston. Each Saturday me and the kids watch a new episode of the show. We are almost finished with the first 26 episodes of season one and are looking forward to season 2! I highly recommend watching it!
After cartoons we got ready and the kids took me out to the bagel shop for some breakfast and they surprised me with a CGC graded copy of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1!
With our bellies full of carbs and cream cheese we headed off to play 18 holes of mini-golf and some sweet arcade games! The wife and myself kind of kept score and we decided it was a tie, due to some circumstances involving kid interference. One of which blocked me from a hole in one! We hit the arcade and played some Skiball, air hockey fishing games and Fast & Furious racing! The kids won a whoopee cushion, some pull back cars, a mini basketball hoop, hackey sack and a ton of Tootsie Rolls!

We got home and played some crazy games of catch, badminton and Nerf Guns outside while I barbecued up some teriyaki & jerk chicken and beef kabobs. These were marinated for over 24 hours and tasted great! Stubbs Beef Marinade is AMAZING!

My wife also surprised me with a 6-pack of Zima to go along with our dinner. It tasted just like I remembered from the 90s. It had a citrusy, muted lemonade flavor. I've heard people compare it to a lighter version of Mike's Hard Lemonade and they are correct. This brought back so many memories!
The night was capped off by a viewing of Space Jam! This has become one of my kids favorite movies and I must say I'm okay with that! I had a great day with my wonderful kids. Now it's Monday and back to the grind...UGH! Why can't every day be Fathers Day?

Friday, June 16, 2017

Foil Pack Revolution: 90s Edition

A recent obsession of mine has been collecting old foil packs of trading cards from the  90s. Sure, I have a ton of these non-sport cards from when I was a kid, but the artwork and design of the packaging is something I missed. When you would buy one of these packs you would tear it open and throw away the wrapper. Never giving it a second thought. Seeing these again brings back memories of feeling the slick paper in your hands, seeing the simple artwork and hearing the foil crinkle as you tore open a fresh pack of trading card nirvana. Let's dive into a few of these packs that I have on display...AGAIN!

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (Fleer, 1995)
 I remember taking my little brother to this movie when it came out in 1995. About halfway through the movie the power went out in the theater. We were given the option of waiting for the lights to come back on or get a refund. With a 7 year old Power Ranger nut with us, we stayed and enjoyed every minute of Ivan Ooze's reign of terror over Angel Grove!
Popeye Trading Cards (Card Creations, 1994)
I worked at a store that sold these cards and every now and then when things would get slow, I would open a few packs hoping to track down some of the chase cards randomly inserted into the packs. These included Character Foil Cards (1:9), Evolution Chrome Cards (1:36), and Popeye Power Cels cards (1:360). I never got one, but the chase continues thanks to the Dollar Tree!
Guinness Book of Records Cards (Pro Set, 1992)
I never collected these as a kid, never had any desire to collect the set, but when old foil packs of trading cards can be had for $0.50 each, I'll add them to my collection.
Jonny Quest: The Real Adventures (Upper Deck, 1996)
Oh Jonny Quest! In 1996 The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest debuted on Cartoon Network. The show was actually pretty entertaining as I remember, but only lasted 52 episodes. It had a mix of traditional animation and computer graphics that added to the new look Jonny. I never knew these cards existed until recently and when given the chance, I grabbed a pack for my collection. Chase cards in the set include Action Quest Pop-Up cards and Heat Activated Hadji's Clues inserts.
Youngblood Trading Cards (Comic Images, 1992)
Lastly we have a pack of Comic Images Youngblood cards featuring art by Rob Liefeld. Back in the 90s Liefeld's art was the hottest around. Looking back now, not so much. I've talked about Comic Images card sets before and this follows the same pattern of basic art, little to no backgrounds and Prism Foil cards as the chase set. For all it's fallbacks, this set still takes me back to the 90s comic book boom that helped me fall in love with comics.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 6/14/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #70
"Desperate Measures" Part 4! A stand-off between humans and mutants turns deadly for one side and the consequences will have an impact for years to come! The senses-shattering conclusion of an action-packed story arc!
(W) Tom Waltz, Kevin Eastman (A/CA) Mateus Santolouco
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by

Monday, June 12, 2017

Remembering Adam West

Last Friday on June 9th we lost another pop-culture icon in Adam West at the age of 88. Everyone will remember him for his roles as Batman in the 60s and his terms as Mayor of Quahog, RI on the animated show Family Guy. I will always remember the time I got to meet the Caped Crusader at the Chiller Theatre convention in 2005.
This was a pretty big year for the convention. They had some amazing guests like Barbara Eden (I Dream of Jeanie), George A. Romero (Night of the Living Dead), Capt Lou Albano (WWF & Super Mario Bros. Super Show), Dirk Benedict (A-Team), Warwick Davis (Star Wars & Willow), Betsy Palmer (Friday The 13th) and Tonya Harding to name a few. You can check out the complete guest list for that year by clicking HERE. Even with all those amazing guests at the convention the one I seeked out was ADAM WEST!
We waited in line for a little while and when we got to Adam West's table he had a handler take our money. This guy was a dead ringer for Vince Neil of Motley Crue fame! I wanted to get an autograph from the Mr. West, so I brought a comic for him to sign...All-Star Batman & Robin the Boy Wonder #1.
He graciously signed the comic after talking with me for a minute about how they draw Batman way too bulky these days and almost like a scene out of The Simpsons, he told us that back in his day he didn't have to wear costumes with fake muscles, he worked at his body.
I'll forgive him for not dancing the Batusi for us, because he did pose with me for the picture at the top of this post and gave me the memory of a lifetime. I got to meet Batman! Thanks for all the fun Adam West, you will be missed.

Friday, June 9, 2017

What happened to Billy Ocean?

This past week while looking for something to watch on Netflix I spotted the 1988 Corey Haim/Corey Feldman classic "License to Drive"! I made some comment to my wife about possibly watching this movie tonight and she replied "I have never seen that before". WHAT! That "possibly watching" turned into a "DEFINATELY WATCHING" License to Drive!
If you haven't seen the movie yet, I won't spoil too much for you, but in a nutshell Corey Haim's character fails his driving test, tells his friend Corey Feldman he passed, they take the family car out and craziness ensues! At the end Haim gets the girl played by a young Heather Graham and they drive away to the sweet & soulful sounds of Billy Ocean.
Billy Ocean? I hadn't thought about him in a long time, but as luck would have it I was recently sorting through a box of old toys, cards, etc. and I uncovered this "Greatest Hits" tape of his that I had bought at Goodwill for $0.50 over a year ago.
If you're anything like me, right now you're asking yourself "Whatever happened to Billy Ocean?". Why doesn't Billy Ocean get the same respect as other R&B singers from the 80s? He was a hit maker on par with Lionel Richie, Terence Trent D'Arby and Keith Sweat at the time. So, what has he been up to since the early 90s? I mean this guy had multiple #1 hits won Grammy Awards and performed the theme song from the film The Jewel of the Nile! He was on top of the world and then nothing.
I did some digging and it turns out Billy Ocean has been quite busy since we last heard him on the airwaves. In 2002 the University of Westminster awarded him an honorary doctorate of music. In 2010 he was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Music of Black Origins Awards. Then in 2011 Ocean became a Companion of the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts and in his spare time he released the albums "Because I Love You" (2009) & "Here You Are" (2013). Finally, he just wrapped his 2017 Spring Tour last month! In honor of rediscovering Billy here is my favorite song of his, "Caribbean Queen (No More Love On The Run)". Have fun trying to get that out of your head! What is your favorite Billy Ocean song?