Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The adventures of Tiger Batman around the World - Part I

Following the example of several Garden Gnome Liberation Groups, I decided to take an action figure to my trip to the great city of San Francisco.

The figure of choice was the little Batman that came with the Gorilla Grodd set from the Action League line (review pending).

This guy:

I called him Tiger Batman because of the stripes in the suit. So, I took him with me on the trip and took photos and here they are:

Tiger Batman in Japan Town, in front of the Peace Plaza.

"Hmm, sushi, I need the Bat-Chopsticks!"

Tiger Batman in Castro Street.

"I'm sure I saw Robin around here somewhere..."

Tiger Batman and the Golden Gate Bridge in a foggy San Francisco afternoon:

"I can't see a Bat-shit in this fog, what is this? London?"

Tiger Batman in China Town:

"I saw a cool Bruce Lee statue, but it was too expensive, even for The Batman"

And finally Tiger Batman fighting his most deadly foe in The Cheese Cake Factory:

"Damn you Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheese Cake! You'll never beat me!"

And that's it. I decided to take Tiger Batman with me in every trip I make. If I go on another trip AND if I remember to take him with there will be more parts of this exciting series of a toy Superhero and guy a little too fond of his toys.

Until next time. Na na na na na na na na na na Tiger Batman!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Sweet Holliday Haul!

This is what I got in my journeys:

Aren't they gorgeous? Individual reviews to follow, I still got some figures from before I left.

Also, I got some very very special TMNT figures. So special I won't show them right now! You'll have to wait and see. I also got some other cool surprise in storage.

Until next time. Stay tuned!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Holliday brake

I'm going to be away for a few days, so Freak Studios will be taking a short brake.

(How short will it be?)

On a scale from Oberon to Mini-Ash?

I'd say an Atom and a half...

Until next time. Lots of toys and surprises when I get back.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Dawn of the Dead

Since the first wave of DC Direct's Blackest Night line I was tempted with one idea: create a display for the Black Lantern Corpse (how come nobody thought of this name before?) or as I like to call them the Justice Zombies.

But when the line started I never bought them and the BLC display stayed just as another crazy idea in my head. I intend to correct that now, I cleared some shelves at home and just when I was wondering what was I going to do with the extra shelf I saw a killer auction for the figures of Blackest Night wave 1 (very hard to get nowadays).

And I ended up getting three of them... Wait, I only wanted the Dead Superman, how the Hell did that happen?

I'll explain.

Well... I knew Atrocitus was cool, all the pics and reviews said he was. But when I saw it in person I just loved it. He truly is rage personified. The sculpt is great and the metallic red really makes him stand up. I'm still not sure if I like that the neck armor and shoulder pads are a separate piece (it even has a slightly different shade of red), but since I just want Atrocitus to stand there and look angry, I guess it's OK.

Zombie Superman is just as great as he sounds. He's a zombie Superman (from Earth II, but still close). I'm not usually a fan of pre-posed figures, but I really dig the crouching and the weird angle of the feet on this one. He just says "zombie" in every inch of plastic. The black suit also works very well. Can't wait to get Martian Manhunter and Aquaman.

I have to admit, Saint Walker kinda snuck up on me. I wasn't planning on getting him, but I needed an excuse to get Atrocitus and the display of one lantern of each color sounded good enough at the time. The figure is very well executed and I like the sculpt and the color scheme, even if it's way less impressive than the other two. I guess he's just not as impressive as a character.

Plus, if I ever get tired of him I can make a pretty decent Earthworm Jim custom out of that head...

So, at the end of the day, I only skipped Boodikka's green cyborg ass. She just wasn't what I'm looking for. I won't be buying every figure in this line, but you can bet I'll keep rounding the Rainbow Force and the Black Lantern Corpse for an epic battle in my shelf.

Another thing I liked about Saint Walker is that he doesn't look very hopeful at all... In fact he looks kinda worried about something...

Can you blame him?

Until next time. BLACK LANTERN CORPSE! I should really do a theme song for them...

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Holy pig on steroids, It's a Super Mutation!

By the year 1994 The Ninja Turtles were still mutants, but they weren't teen anymore. The animated series that was the way most kids got to know this group started in 1987, Playmates toy line in 1988 and by 1994 the idea tank was running quite low.

Plus you had to sell the product to Japan.

And Japan loves transforming stuff into other stuff. We know that. Japan also likes to combine stuff with stuff to form bigger stuff. We also know that. But how do we get the Turtles to do that?

"We give them mechas", you may think.

Well, you thought wrong. The turtles are mutants so we Super mutate them. Did you remember Grant Morrison X-men's secondary mutations? Well, like that, but a lot more crazy.

If you didn't see it, check the insanity.

And of course, Playmates made toys out of this. I would never buy the Super Mutation turtles, they look like Hell and they even have noses. NOSES for crying out loud! WHY? Why would you put a nose on a mutant turtle? Really...


Now, the other characters redesigns are not nearly as bad. Some are even quite good, and some simply badass, like Master Splinter:

The other day on a Park sale, I found a guy selling two of these in perfect condition. I have never seen the Super Mutation characters here before. So I couldn't help it and bought them.

Supermutant Bebop and Supermutant Rocksteady. Silly characters, cool designs and keep in mind that Bebop is one of my all time favorite characters from the original toy line. If you read this blog often you know how I go on and on about not getting variants and all that. But I just can't help it if the variants are cool and not just repaints. I'm still not sure if these will go with the rest of the TMNT display.

The redesign for Rockstaedy in great, he lacks some of the detailed work of the original release, but the sculptor did manage to give him a very imposing and threatening look. Considering the character was more or less a joke, that alone is a very impressive achievement. The paint is simple and the color scheme is taken directly from the original Rocksteady's camo pants, so that's a nice touch.

I clearly like original Bebop more than the redesign. He's nice and has a lot of wicked details and paint apps, something the Supermutant Rocksteday is missing, but he has one severe flaw. His nose ring is not painted. And that little almost obsessive compulsive thing to note, ruins the figure as a whole. Original Bebop had a lot unpainted details (like most of Playmates TMNT), but he can look proudly at you and say "I have a yellow nose ring, and you don't".

(Supermutant Bebop also has like the craziest Mohawk ever)

I'm glad I got these, they look cool and Playmates was doing great sculpts at the moment. But I don't think they'll replace the original ones in my display.


(I found the Mecha Turtle image on the web, I don't know who did it. Splinter and Supermutant Leo are from

Monday, April 5, 2010

Rumble in the Jungle

I know, I know that the actual name of this two-pack is Justice in the Jungle, but I like that name better. It has a better ring to it.

This is the last DCUC Two Pack from Mattel, the two characters are linked by their animal powers and thus, the name of the pack. Anyway, the name is kinda wrong. B'wana Beast is a white African superhero so the name Justice in the Jungle may actually apply to him (although it would be more accurate to say he's from the Savannah, but it's a common stretch, like when we say that the lion is the king of the jungle). But Animal Man, is not a "Jungle" hero, he's a suburban hero that even uses a jacket since he doesn't like to show his body too much. He has a wife and kids and even a minivan. Calling this pack Justice in the Jungle is like calling a Two-Pack with Aquaman and Johnny Quick "Justice in Lake Michigan", Aquaman apply, with a little stretch, since he's ocean based, but Johnny Quick is out of his environment.

That - completely idiotic - rant aside, these two-pack contains two of my favorite comic characters. And that's thanks to the awesome work of Grant Morrison. Morrison has had his ups and downs, but his run in Animal Man (that's when I knew B'wana Beast) and Doom Patrol are two of my favorite ever. They, along with stuff from Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman and others changed the way a teenage me read comics.

Animal Man is a great figure, but I must confess I'm very attached to the DCD version of the character and only bought this because he came along with B'wana Beast. I still find the articulation of Mattel a little too obvious in figures with lighter color schemes, like Animal Man's orange spandex suit (I know... What was he thinking, right?). Except for that the figure has a very nice sculpt. And nothing else. He doesn't really need anything else, since his powers come from borrowing "animal" powers, but some animals would have been a nice touch, especially since this was the last Matty exclusive two-pack. Going the extra mile as a farewell present is always good. But Mattel is not THAT nice.

B'wana Beast is a really freaky character: He has a freaky power (he can join two animals into one fucked up chimera) and a freaky costume and a freaky name. And if there's something I love is a freaky character. And I guess someone at Mattel/DC Animated loves him too. For a Z list character he now has not one, not two, not even three but four (FOUR/4/CUATRO/QUATRE!!!) action figures. A 6" DCUC version, a 5" Batman the Brave and the Bold version, a 3 3/4 JLU version and a tiny (I don't really know the scale here...) Action League version. Man, that's a lot of B'wana love.

(Yes, I used the same shot for both comics... Sorry)

The figure is simple, but amazing (still, he really needs nipples!), it's almost a plain base buck, with some details in the loincloth, boots and helmet. The helmet looks especially great.

Now that I have an incredibly obscure character, I want more. Like:

Ram, from the New Guardians. This character had it all, a cliché (he was a Japanese guy that was turned into a machine-Japanese-guy), a killer look, cool powers (although nobody really explained them), and a really freaky and failed purpose in life (he was the only heterosexual "human" male in a group that was supposed to have sex to trigger the next human evolution and... Wait for it... And he has no genitals! You can see it in the pic, he's naked and unless the girl he was dating a the time had a USB port, the next evolution is bye bye).

OK, Mattel, so maybe not him, but how about one of the other New Guardians for my Batman display, like:

Floronic Man (or Floro) a Batman villain, turned hero, turned villain. You know the drill. C'mon you can even flock him... I know you like to flock toys, Matty...

No? Well, since we're talking about talking plants how about...

Swamp Thing! The one and only...

I know, I know. Vertigo limitations. But if we could overcome those limitations you can make toys of...

The brotherhood of DADA! You're making a Doom Patrol, so a cool group of villains from the...

Yeah, Vertigo era, damn! But another member of the Doom Patrol you could make is...

Karma, another freaky character with great hair and weird powers.

OK, OK, not him either? But since we're talking about weird...

(I can go on all day, so I'll better stop now). You heard me Mattel, let's do this!

Until next time. B'wana love for everybody!