Friday, October 20, 2017

My Faves: Figure Collection #6

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 and since it's the Halloween season, I'm gonna make this one an ALL BAD GUYS EDITION! Here we go!

Toon Shredder (Playmates, 1992)
I never had this version of the Shredder as a kid, but always wanted him. He was released around the time I stopped buying toys and hit puberty. This version of Shredder is what we should have got the first time around instead of that purple and dark blue suited imposter that was released in 1988. I just wish he wasn't so damn hard to pose!

 Mumm-Ra Mini-Figurine (Kid Works, 1986)
These mini versions of the Thundercats characters were a favorite of me and my brother. They had no articulation, but they were travel size and always made the shopping trips with our Mom all that more epic and exciting!

Kang from Treehouse of Horror XVI (Burger King, 2011)
I have a soft spot for this Treehouse of Horror series from Burger King. They were released around the time my twins were born. Myself and the wife had been stuck at the hospital for a few days and my wife's parents were cool enough to watch our oldest daughter. She was going to become a big sister, but wasn't able to visit the hospital yet so I still wanted to keep her involved and do something special. I picked her up from the house one day and took her to Burger King and we got some Kids Meals that had these toys inside! Good memories.

Target Exclusive Titanium Darth Vader (Kenner, 2010)
I don't have too much to say about this figure except that I picked up this Titanium Darth on clearance while I was working at Target. I'm a big Star Wars fan and Mr. Vader is my favorite character. How could I pass up this toy?

Battle Armor Skeletor (Mattel, 1984)
I absolutely loved this guy as a kid! To this day I still feel giddy every time I roll back his battle damaged chest plate and then punch it to reveal dents and scratches! It really makes me feel like the most powerful man in the universe! This version of Skeletor is great, but he still comes in at a close second to my number one pick, Dragon Blaster Skeletor.

Did you enjoy this post? 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, October 18, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 10/18/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
RUGRATS #1
Hang on to your diapies, babies! We're teaming up with Nickelodeon for all-new Rugrats adventures with the most intrepid toddlers to ever bust out of a playpen! Tommy, Chucky, Phil and Lil have noticed something-they are being watched. Somehow their parents can see every little thing that they can do. They're going to have to find a way to have fun while avoiding the electronic eyes of the babycam!
(W) Box Brown (A) Lisa DuBois (CA) Jorge Corona
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Friday, October 13, 2017

Retro Arcade: MediEvil

In 1998 Sony Computer Entertainment dropped the action/adventure game "MediEvil" onto us! In the game you play as Sir Daniel Fortesque, a medieval knight who was wrongly credited with defeating Zarok and his undead army! 100 years later Zarok has returned and Sir Daniel has been resurrected by accident. To prove he belongs next to the great warriors of his time in the hall of heroes, it is up to this jawless, single eyed soldier to save the land of Gallowmere!


Me and my brothers got this game as a Christmas present and was one of the first PlayStation games we ever owned! From the start I was hooked. The story was cool, the graphics were outstanding for the time and the characters & settings were artistic and clever.


It's really a shame that despite positive reviews, we only got one proper sequel to this fun and imaginative game! In 2000 MediEvil 2 was released again by Sony and it picks up 500 years after the first installment with Sir Daniel in London attempting to stop sorcerer Lord Palethorn and Jack the Ripper's plans to revive the dead.

I have never played this game, actually I never knew it existed until I started writing this post! But now I am on the hunt for a copy! According to reviews, it plays and looks pretty much the same as the original. Seriously though, who could pass up an opportunity to become an undead warrior who fights creatures of the night on his way to thwart the plans of Jack The Ripper!

It sounds like a blast, but nothing can replace those teenage memories of playing this game full of ghouls and demons on Christmas morning with my brothers...oh I mean brother, my youngest sibling was so scared of the game that he couldn't nor be around anyone who was playing the game! Sony really needs to go back and take a look at this PS1 classic. Could you imagine this game on the PS4? That would be insane! Now enjoy this MediEvil commercial from the 1998 holiday season!


Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 10/11/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
FALCON #1
TAKE FLIGHT Part 1
Sam Wilson - winged warrior, avian Avenger and one-time sentinel of liberty - takes to the skies again, reborn and recommitted as the fighter for freedom, THE FALCON! Engaged in an all-new assignment while training his new partner THE PATRIOT, Sam Wilson soars high and sees all. But Sam's new mission finds him on a collision course with an enemy way out of his weight class-the demonic BLACKHEART! Writer Rodney Barnes (THE BOONDOCKS) joins artist Joshua Cassara (SECRET EMPIRE: UNDERGROUND) to challenge Sam Wilson as never before! From the stratosphere to the streets, the Marvel Universe now has a high-flying hero circling above them ready to strike! PLUS: Includes 3 bonus MARVEL PRIMER PAGES! Story by Robbie Thompson and art by Mark Bagley!
(W) Rodney Barnes (A) Joshua Cassara (CA) Jesus Saiz    
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Friday, October 6, 2017

Halloween Cinematic Favorites: Return of the Living Dead!

Last year my wife and myself went to the Magic City Monster Con where Linnea Quigley aka Trash from Return of the Living Dead would be making an appearance! We met her and she was a really nice person. I wrote all about it in a past post that you can read by clicking HERE. Seeing her reminded me of my childhood trauma of witnessing the Tar-man eat a punker's brain. I'm pretty sure I was around 10 years old at the time! Well, it had been years since I had seen the movie and my wife had never seen it at all! I was on the hunt to find a copy of Return of the Living Dead!

I had heard that it would be re-released along with a slew of other great horror movies. Then I found it at Wal-Mart for the amazingly low price of $5! I love the new special edition packaging these movies are sporting. They have horror icons from Chucky to Carrie done up in a sort of "Day of the Dead" style. Very cool! We watched the movie this past weekend as part of our Halloween movie fest, and it had more humor than I remembered.
I mean how could you not chuckle when the zombie asks for them to send more paramedics...for them to eat! And damn, that Tar-Man still scares the crap out of me! I guess that's the point of these movies to have fun and enjoy the ride! Here are 3 moments that I loved from Return of the Living Dead! These clips are not for younger viewers. Viewer discretion is advised! 

After two bumbling medical supply warehouse workers named Freddy & Frank accidentally open a military canister containing a reanimated corpse, all of the dead things in their office start coming to life! This includes cadavers for medical research, 1/2 dogs used for vet studies and even pinned butterflies start flapping their wings! It's crazy and funny watching these two try and contain the latest zombie outbreak especially when they smack a reanimated dog with a crutch!

UGH! This is another scene that terrified me as a kid! While Scuz, one of the punks in the film is being attacked by a zombie, the rest of the team manages to pull him back through a busted window and into their mortuary sanctuary. Unfortunately the zombie that was attacking him is pulled in also. Ernie, the guy who runs the mortuary thinks it would be a good idea to strap the zombie down and ask it a few questions. This is where I learned that eating brains eases the pain of being dead!

 
The damn Tar-Man! The actor who portrayed the Tar-man did an amazing job with the body movements and really gave the feeling that this guy was ready to fall apart at any moment, but that wouldn't stop him from ingesting some brains first!

Well, those are some of my favorite moments from Return of the Living Dead. If you have never seen this movie I highly recommend it for the Halloween season. Now that I own a copy, it will be a staple of my fall viewing for years to come! Now take some time and enjoy this coloring page of the cover art!



Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 10/4/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
HARLEY & IVY MEET BETTY & VERONICA #1
Free college tuition for all Riverdale residents?! That's the plan-after the town drains the wetlands that lie between it and Gotham City and then builds a new campus. The only snag? A certain botany-obsessed super-villain. When Poison Ivy enlists her bestie, Harley, to kidnap both Veronica Lodge, daughter of Riverdale's most important citizen, and her friend Betty, she's counting on some assistance-and the mayhem that ensues will probably work as well!
DC Comics and Archie are proud to present the adventure of a lifetime for all these best pals. Their hijinks are brought to you by the real-life team-up of Paul Dini (HARLEY QUINN) and Marc Andreyko (WONDER WOMAN '77), with art by Laura Braga (DC BOMBSHELLS)!
(W) Paul Dini, Marc Andreyko (A) Laura Braga (CA) Amanda Conner
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Friday, September 29, 2017

Super Mario Bros. Skybox Movie Cards!

In the summer of 1993 kids all over the United States waited with anticipation for the theatrical release of the blockbuster film event of the decade! That film was Super Mario Bros. starring Bob Hoskins as Mario and John Leguizamo as Luigi! I saw the movie at the theater when it was released and enjoyed it for the most part, but I was left with so many questions. Why was Koopa a human? Why were the heads of the Goombas so small? Where was Princess Toadstool? After all these years I have no answers for these questions, but I have grown to appreciate the Super Mario Bros. movie for what it is...a fun, crazy, industrial thrill ride filled with fungus and mediocre performances! In other words it is an amazing sight to behold!
Around the time the film was released naturally there was a ton of tie in merchandise. Everything from action figures to books to music soundtracks featuring Roxette were released to the unsuspecting masses, but the one thing that always eluded me was the Super Mario Bros. movie cards by Skybox! Years ago I bought a sealed box of 36 packs on eBay for around $10. I never had any intention to open them, but plans change.
Recently me and my kids watched the movie and my son fell in love with it. I mentioned to him that I had a box of the cards and his little mind was blown. We dug the cards out of our back closet and sat on the living room floor with the girls opening every pack to see if we could complete a whole set and we did! We got the 100 card base set and also the 3 card hologram set! When we reached this milestone there was much rejoicing and we read the back of each card as a bedtime story for the kids.
Now that I've told my story, in no particular order here are my favorite cards from this Super trading card set:
"A Parallel Dimension" (Card #28)
The scene where these 2 mini-dinos are featured happens when the Mario Bros. make their first trip to Koopa Square. These guys are only on screen for a split second, so it's nice to finally have a still picture of them to pour over for as long as I want. Aren't they cute?

"Big Plans" (Card #62)
For 80% of the movie the Mario Bros. are dressed in either street clothes or vibrant colored dance wear! It isn't until their assault on Koopa Tower that we finally get to see the unstoppable plumbers in their recognizable red & Green garb! I remember getting so excited when this happened on the big screen. I still get that feeling of joy when I look at this card today.

"Daisy's Back" (Card #90)
The scene from this card happens just before the end credits roll. Daisy busts into the Mario Bros. apartment asking for help on another adventure. I assume they did this to lead into a sequel. Man I would've loved seeing a second film with Wart as the main baddie...but wait something is a little off here? 
Daisy is in a totally different outfit on the card! They must have changed up the end sequence to make Daisy look more badass in the final version of the movie with her long sleeve shirt and bandolier filled with Bullet Bills!

"Koopa Regresses" (Card #86)
This is another blink and you miss it scene in the movie. When Koopa is hit with the Devo Gun (aka Super Scope 6) at the end of the film by Mario and Luigi, he is transformed into a primordial sludge that splashes on the streets. But as he is being transformed, he regresses from his current state to a T-rex in the process! I love this shot! I wonder if Dennis Hopper was under that sweet Halloween mask?

"Luigi Mario" (Card #4)
Not only does this card introduce us to one of our heroes it also shows that Luigi enjoys reading GamePro Magazine! I loved that periodical as a kid. Why don't they make these anymore?

"Yoshi" (Card #52)
For obvious reasons this card was included! Who didn't love Yoshi and to see him come to life in this film was mind shattering. He was so AWESOME and even saved the day by grabbing Lena with his super stretchy tongue! Also Samantha Mathis looks kinda hot is this photo.

That's it! I hoped you enjoyed this look back at one of the weirdest pieces of Nintendo history from the 90s. If you are a fan of Mario and haven't seen this movie, I highly suggest you check it out with an open mind...otherwise you will be very disappointed. After all THIS AIN'T NO GAME! For more info on the strange history of the making of this film, click HERE.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 9/27/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
SUPERMAN: ACTION COMICS #988
"THE OZ EFFECT" part two! As Superman struggles with the ramifications of Mr. Oz's identity, the mysterious figure's origins and the long road to Superman's doorstep finally reveal themselves.
(W) Dan Jurgens (A) Ryan Sook (CA) Nick Bradshaw    
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Friday, September 22, 2017

Birthday Recap 2017!

My family really did an amazing job this year taking care of me on my birthday! First off when I woke up that morning sitting on the kitchen counter was this amazing Mr. Men cake my wife baked for me! It was butter/pecan flavor and she made the caramel frosting and Mr. Bump, Mr. Tickle and Mr. Happy were created with colored chocolates!

When I got home from work, my kids couldn't wait for me to open my gifts. The first one I opened was this mini Centipede arcade cabinet! I set the high score of the day at just over 35,000 points. I felt pretty accomplished until my wife told me the world record was over 16 million points!
Next I opened a gift from my son, these Masters of the Universe Megaconstrux mini-figs! I love these guys! They are like having mini versions of the original action figures! It was a bonus when we figured out you can remove their heads. We put Skeletor's staff skull on his head and it looks AWESOME!

Bill & Ted's Excellent Double Feature! I have owned a copy of Bogus Journey for a long time now. I got it from Pizza Hut when they did a "Dinner & a movie" promotion back in the day, but for some reason I never owned Excellent Adventure...until now! EXCELLENT!!! Also, the family stepped up my t-shirt game with this Space Jam shirt. I immediately took off my plain white tee and put this baby on!

My oldest daughter got me some of my favorite candy and a new Wii Nunchuck controller. She picked this out so we could all play games together. We already have 2, but now 3 players can take part in the Superhero Squad battles on the WiiU! What a thoughtful gift!
My youngest daughter picked out this Yeti in My Spaghetti game! If you don't know what this game is, it's kind of a mash-up between pick up sticks and Don't Break The Ice. You set up a bed of spaghetti over a bowl and place the adorable little Yeti in the middle. Each player takes a turn removing a piece of spaghetti. The one that drops him in ends the game. We had so much fun with this one. If you have kids between the ages of 5 & 8 like I do, I highly recommend it!

Opening all those gifts gave us an appetite! So we went to the best pizza parlor in town, Village Inn Pizza! This place has such an 80s retro feel to it. 
They have stained glass windows, dark lighting, classic salad bar and VIDEO GAMES!!!!
We were able to play the table top Ms. Pac-Man game (I set the high score!), Feeding Frenzy a crane game and Fast and the Furious. Then our pizza came!
We got a Pepperoni for the kids and the Village Inn special for me and my wife. This pizza was topped with Pepperoni, Salami, Sausage, Green Pepper, Onion, Black Olive And Mushroom and it was delicious! After dinner we went home, played some games and had some cake. It was a great day and I am so appreciative of all the thought that my family put into it. I am a lucky guy!   




Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 9/20/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
CATWOMAN BY JIM BALENT TP BOOK 01
At last, DC collects Catwoman's 1990s adventures! Gotham City's Feline Fatale has turned a new leaf as she faces off with Bane, takes on thugs and includes Knightquest, Knightsend and Zero Hour crossovers! Collects Catwoman #0-14.
(W) Jo Duffy, Doug Moench (A) Rick Burchett, Ande Parks, Bob Smith (A/CA) Jim Balent
SRP: $29.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Friday, September 15, 2017

Why Michael Dooney is my Hero.

 
 
As a huge lifelong fan of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the art of Michael Dooney has always been around my collection. Whether it be from the comic books, posters or Nintendo video game box art, Dooney's artwork, in my opinion, has always been the standard for other TMNT artists. So when I had the chance to purchase some of his autographed prints, I jumped at the opportunity! I got the prints and had intentions of getting them framed, but never got around to it. They ended up on a shelf in the basement. A few months ago when I was cleaning said basement I was shocked at what I found!
 
 
 
Ironically enough a strange goo had spilled all over the Ninja Turtle prints! I was not very happy about this turn of events. I tried to clean them the best that I could, but as you can see it didn't help. After some more cleaning I discovered that the goo came from a half drunken can of Duff Energy Drink! This is one time where I could "Get enough of that wonderful Duff"!
I became even more frustrated because I know it was myself that caused the damage. Like I said, I tried to clean them off and it didn't work. So I contacted Michael Dooney himself via his website, Dooney Girls! What happened next was AWESOME!
Mr. Dooney went out of his way to make sure that the damaged prints were replaced. I am very thankful for his dedication to his fans. But he didn't stop there...
 
He also threw in these 2 prints as a bonus! What a cool guy! It's these type of actions that keep your fans for life. I appreciate the personal care Mr. Dooney gave me and I will be getting these prints framed ASAP! That's why Michael Dooney is a hero to me.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Comic Book Pick: 9/13/17

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
HARLEY QUINN 25TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL #1
In a story written by Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti, with art by Conner, learn what really happened when Harley, Catwoman, and Poison Ivy hit Vegas! Then, a tale written by Paul Dini with art by Chad Hardin takes us back to Harley's days with the Joker to see the hell he unleashes when he makes the mistake of scheduling the biggest heist of their career on Harley's birthday! Plus, writer Chip Zdarsky and artist Joe Quinones pit Harley and the Joker against Batman and Robin -- but while you might think the Joker knows how to play with Batman's mind, it's nothing compared to Harley's ability to crack Robin's psyche! And that's not all! Writer Dale Kibblesmith with art by David LaFuente put Coney Island right in the path of a hurricane -- and put Harley on a collision course with Swamp Thing, of all people...monsters...things...? This issue also includes Harley pin-up pages with art by Babs Tarr, Bengal, Dustin Nguyen and more!
(W) Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti, Paul Dini, Chip Zdarsky (A) Amanda Conner, Chad Hardin, Joe Quinones (CA) Rachel Dodson, Terry Dodson
SRP: $4.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Monday, September 11, 2017

Superheroes at the Art Museum!

This past weekend we took our kids to the art museum for a new exhibit called "My Hero! Contemporary Art and Superhero Action"! The local art museum made this a fun event for kids by inviting cosplayers over to take pictures with the kids, snacks, crafts and FREE ADMISSION for everyone who was there to see the exhibit. My kids really got into the spirit of things by dressing up as Iron Man, Batgirl and Wonder Woman. Not only was the Superhero exhibit free, but the entire museum was open to the public at no cost. This was a great way to get my kids into the art museum and learn an appreciation for art. Here are some of my favorite pieces from the show.

"Catvengers" by Jenny Parks (2013)
This was possibly my favorite piece from the show! How could you not love cuddly cat versions of the Earth's Mightiest Heroes? I mean look at Cat-Hulk, he is so grumpy but I still want to pick him up and squeeze that soft fur! No question, this was my kids favorite image.

"Tony Stark, The Iron Man" & "Bruce Wayne, The Batman" by Jeremy Fisher (2015)
These sculptures were amazing. They were life sized recreations of the Iron Man and Batman masks. The details in the Iron Man mask were fantastic! From the twisted metal to broken wires it was great. I believe these were made to represent the fragility of our modern heroes and that we are all human underneath it all. Pretty deep!


"Xi'an-American Batman & Spider-Man Warriors" by Lizabeth Eva Rossof (2015)
These 2 statues were actually made from concrete and were inspired, as you might guess, by the terracotta warriors that were discovered in the tomb of China's first Emperor, Quin Shi Huang!

"DEFLECTION" by Maurizio Zuluaga (2014)
This collage had so much going on, but in the middle of it all stood the eye catching visage of Batman shooting rainbows from his eyes! This piece was so bright and busy that it was hard not to be drawn in and see how many characters you could find blended into the canvas. Another bit of info is that the artist is from Jersey City, NJ!

 "Tim Drake - Robin" by Simon Monk (2012)
There were several of these paintings in the "Bagged Heroes" series by Monk, but the one that stood out to me the most was this one of Tim Drake aka Robin. Not sure why? Maybe it's because he reminds me of the Kenner Robin figure from the "Batman Returns" line that I once owned?

"Non Stop Beautiful Ladies" by Remi Noel (2005)
This one just seemed funny to me. The artist, Remi Noel, took a Batman action figure and snapped photos of him in various situations like reading a cookbook, in bed at a hotel and staring at bat shaped power lines, but this is the one that stood out to me. It was so unusual to see Batman in this setting contemplating the night's entertainment that lies ahead.

I loved this exhibit! There were so many more great pieces of art at the show. If this exhibit ever hits your town, I highly recommend you strap on your boots, throw on your cape and fly on over to the art museum to check it out! For more info on this traveling exhibit or to see if it's heading anywhere near you visit The Bedford Gallery website.