Sunday, November 2, 2014

Top 40 Toy Finds of October: 36 thru 40

(36 thru 40)

At the end of each month I, Brunpuppies, will put together a list of the toys that I acquired over the course of the month. The number of entries will differ depending on just how many toys I got in that month. The order of the list will be based purely on my personal opinion of the items and is in no way definitive. I'm sure you the reader will have you own favorites and I am open to hearing about them in the comments section.

October has been possibly the biggest toy month that I have ever had.  In this month happened to be both my birthday and New York Comic Con, so those two events contributed a lot to it. It's hard to believe that even at the age of 35, my sister and mother-in-law were nice enough to get me some Toys R Us gift cards. Thanks for contributing to my habit! NYCC was a blast and I can't wait to go again next year. Amazingly, most of my toy purchases came from one company, Bandai. It's surprising how things change, six months ago they weren't really on my radar, now they're one of my favorite companies.

For this list, I will be revealing five figures at a time over the course of the next two weeks or so until we get to number one. The entries start of fairly weak (they can't all be winners), but as it moves on, we
get some really cool toys on this list.

Let us begin with...

40. SpruKits DC Comics New 52 Batman Level 1 Action Figure Model Kit (Bandai)

I have been loving the SpruKits models that come out so far, but I've been avoiding the Level 1 offerings because they didn't seem quite as good. Finally I broke down and figured I would at least try one. Since I enjoyed the Level 2 Batmen so much, I went ahead and gave Batman another try.

I was not impressed.

The other SpruKits models are great because the building of the figure is fun and the final result is an awesome, well-articulated action figure. The Level 1 figures, however, take about 5 minutes to build and have really awkward articulation that's not all that useful. For instance, the shoulders need to be pulled out in order to rotate and then pushed back into place one you have them at the angle you want. If the figure just had some knee joints I may have been a little more forgiving, unfortunately it did not.

It isn't all bad, the figure has a nice sculpt and is scaled to fit nicely with other 3-3/4" to 4" action figure lines. The cape also looks really good and is my favorite of any of the capes that come with SpruKits models (although I'm not a fan of most of them). I can understand the other figures not having this kind of cape because it would have limited articulation. This figure doesn't really have to worry about that.

39. Comic Style Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Raphael Action Figure (Playmates)

Many people compare this line of Comic Style Ninja Turtles to the ones NECA made a few years back, but really that's an unfair comparison because they are not even remotely in the same league. NECA was making figures that were targeted towards collectors so the sculpt, paint, and articulation were brought to a higher level. Playmates is making figures that are meant for children who mostly know the Turtles through the Nicktoons animated series. So really, these figures should be judged against the other Turtle figures that have been based on that cartoon. In that case, these comic style figures still kind of suck.

I applaud Playmates for even making a series of classic figures like this, but the execution is completely lacking. Raphael was the first figure I got of the Comic Style figures and he's going to be the last. I issues have to do with the sculpt, paint, and articulation, which I know is the same across all four Turtles.

I know Playmates can do a great sculpt, because the first four Turtles they did for the Nicktoons show are fantastic and have a wonderful level of detail. The sculpt on Comic Style Raphael just looks ugly. The sculpted crosshatching just ends up looking like scars or even worse, like there was some issue in casting the plastic for the parts. Better paint may have help the sculpt a little. I've seen customs where people have added black to the hatching so it looks more like line work. It looks much better, but still far from great. The color choices in general on this figure aren't very appealing to me.

The articulation is so close to being good, but the awkward hip joint and complete lack of wrist articulation are just so disappointing. The hip joint is similar to what is used on most of the other Turtle figures, but it can't quite bend forward like it should without requiring the leg to be rotated. Without a swivel wrist, it's so hard to have Raph hold his sai in a way that looks natural. 

This will be the first time I have ever bought just one of the Turtles in a series and not wanted to get the other three.

38. Justice League War: Superman Action Figure (DC Collectibles)

Full disclosure, I bought this on ebay from a chinese retailer that sells mostly bootlegs and factory rejected toys. It only cost me $4 as opposed to the typical $20. I figured that was a completely reasonable price for a figure I might not otherwise get. I've since compared it to an official release and I don't really see much of a difference at all, so other than the fact that it didn't come with a box, it looks like a legitimate figure. That still doesn't make me like that figure though.

Honestly, I'm probably ranking this figure much lower than it deserves, but the sculpt just bugs me. First off, I hate the face sculpt. I looks less like Superman and more like someone that had plastic surgery to look like Superman. It doesn't even match the Justice League War character model that the figure is based on. The other sculpt issue I have is the lack of sculpted elements on the body. Everything is just painted on to a nude body. I hate when that is done. At very least the boots and belt should have been sculpted. I know I'm being overly harsh on this figure, but I just don't like it. 

37. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tiger Claw Action Figure (Playmates)

At this point I should just know that every figure of a Ninja Turtle villain is just going to be undersized, under articulated, and under painted. Yet every time I'm disappointed. The Tiger Claw action figure is no exception. It's just another case of a cool character getting a not so good figure. I don't have much else to say other than I still wish Playmates would do a deluxe line for the larger characters.

A lot of what I said in my Slash review HERE applies to this figure as well.

38. DC Comics Multiverse Arkham Knight: Robin Action Figure (Mattel)

Most of what I have to say about this figure, I've already said in my review HERE. It really comes down to a self proclaimed "Adult Collector" series that's just very unimpressive. I can't stress enough how annoying it is that they couldn't be bothered to have him his signature bo staff from the game. It's like releasing a Thor toy without his hammer or Captain America without a shield.

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