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Thursday, July 17, 2014

The AFB Podcast Episode 125: Funko Domo Batman, Bowen Frankenstein, Earth Two Wonder Woman, Sideshow Catwoman


Episode 125 of the AFB Podcast is live at iTunes and is now available for direct downloadDownload and subscribe to the podcast at iTunes now! 

Join Eli, Tom, Ben and Scott for this week's toy news and reviews as we turn 125 Episodes Old! Be prepared - it's  BIG show!

This week we check out four great items - there's something for everyone!


Funko Domo Batman


Bowen Designs Frankenstein Statue

DC Collectibles Earth Two Wonder Woman

Sideshow Collectibles Catwoman 1/6 Scale Figure

If you don't use iTunes, you can download Episode 125 here now! Click on the link to listen, or right click to save the file! The podcast will always be available from the “Podcast” tab here - but if you can subscribe and give us positive ratings at iTunes, that will help us greatly! 

The AFB Podcast is also on Stitcher Radio!

Have a listen, and please give us some feedback at podcast@actionfigureblues.com - we might even read out your feedback on the next show!

Happy listening!















Monday, July 14, 2014

FRESH MONKEY FICTION LAUNCHES AMAZING HEROES RETRO SUPER HERO ACTION FIGURE LINE




Fresh Monkey Fiction brings classic super heroes to life with Amazing Heroes Kickstarter.



Los Angeles, CA. (July 14, 2014) – Fresh Monkey Fiction announces the crowdsourcing campaign for their long awaited Amazing Heroes retro action figure line of classic Golden Age superheroes. This 4.5” action figure line brings a handful of cult characters to life, with both collectability and playability in mind.

For most of these characters, it will be the first time they have ever been made into action figure form.

"With The Amazing Heroes line we hope to invoke a bit of vintage nostalgia as we pay homage to the mid '80s super hero toy lines that many of us grew up with," says Fresh Monkey Founder Bill Murphy.

Getting these classic cult heroes made into action figures has been a dream of Bill Murphy’s, going back to his childhood desire to play with them alongside the then-current superhero toy lines.

The inclusion of Captain Action—the first superhero figure, officially licensed by Captain Action Enterprises—brings a gravitas to the line.

“As the Original Super-Hero Action Figure, Captain Action has a unique place in history for licensing comic and toy properties,” Ed Catto of Captain Action Enterprises says. “Arguably the first major toy to leverage multiple licenses, Captain Action created a true “shared universe” that most toy enthusiasts could only get with their own toy-box crossovers. For the first time, with Captain Action, it was ‘official’!”

Series 1 will include the following classic heroes:

Black Terror – “Golden Age Crime Fighter”
Golden Age Dare-Devil – “Avenging Hero”
Stardust – “The Super Wizard”
Captain Action – “The Original Super Hero Action Figure”

Also included is The Blank State, a customizable figure dubbed the “Villainous Copycat”.

The 40 day Kickstarter campaign for Amazing Heroes features two stretch goal figures: the Champion of Mars (“Hero of the Red Planet”) and Silver Streak (“The Red-Clad Speedster”). Incentives include the PDF Amazing Heroes Handbook with essays by comic book historian Christopher Irving (Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins of American Comics, with photographer Seth Kushner) and Golden Age comic stories, as well as a chance for donors to have their own characters customized as either a one-off or for 300 units. Contributors can also order a case of 300 figures of another Golden Age figure—Daredevil in yellow and blue, Vulcan, The Liberator, or Lash Lightning—that will never again be made into an Amazing Hero.

To celebrate the Kickstarter, Fresh Monkey Fiction will run a “Find the Fresh Monkey” contest at San Diego Comic Con. If you find someone with a Fresh Monkey t-shirt, take a pic, then share it with the link to the Kickstarter on Facebook or Twitter, you will be registered to win a variety of prizes—including original art, comics, toys and t-shirts from some of our industry sponsors. Find out more details about this contest on our website this week.

We’ll also be attending the Captain Action Custom Figure Contest, Thursday, at 3:30 in Room: 24ABC to support our pals with Captain Action Enterprises and to answer any and all questions about Amazing Heroes.

The Amazing Heroes Kickstarter launches today, with a goal of $30,000.00, at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/549582372/amazing-heroes-retro-style-super-hero-action-figur



About Fresh Monkey Fiction
Fresh Monkey Fiction LLC is dedicated to telling stories through art and design. We’re building a business model around leveraging the power of crowd funding to bring great products to the collector. Our motto is “If you support it, we will make it”. Our goal is to create amazing collectibles that encourage fans to explore the depths of their imagination and tell great stories. If we can bring a little bit of playful imagination to someone's day, we've done our job.  Discover your imagination at www.freshmonkeyfiction.com

About Captain Action Enterprises
As Retropreneurs, Captain Action Enterprises, LLC specializes in taking old properties and rejuvenating them for a new generation. Captain Action appears in an on-going comic book series, lithographs, statues, action figures, T-shirts, model kits and more. Additional properties include Captain Action Cat, the Zeroids and Savage Beauty. For additional information, please contact Ed Catto at ed.catto@bonfireagency.com.

Captain Action, Lady Action, The Zeroids and related characters are  ©2014 and ™ Captain Action Enterprises, LLC.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Scotty's Toyroom Reviews: Marvel Infinite Series Wave 2 2014

I’m working on getting back into the written review swing, focusing on items I don’t get the chance to review in detail on the AFB Podcast. I'm going to start badging these as "Scotty's Toyroom" Reviews from here on out. 

Tonight I thought I’d look at the latest wave of Hasbro’s Marvel Infinite Series that I’ve picked up, seeing as reviews of it’s predecessor, Marvel Universe, have always been popular here.



In this wave, there are only three characters new to the line: Red She-Hulk, Whirwind, and Death’s Head. Who? Yeah, we'll get to that in a moment.

Having a fairly extensive Marvel 3 ¾” collection at this stage, I’m really only focusing on the new characters to the scale, but I did end up picking up three repeat characters as well: Steve Rogers, Yellowjacket and Beta Ray Bill, for different reasons. I’d never previously purchased a Steve Rogers figure at this scale, and the original Yellowjacket I owned had very disappointing paint. As for Beta Ray Bill, well, it’s Beta Ray Bill, people, and he’s just awesome!



I quite like the new packaging for this re-branding of Hasbro’s 3 ¾” Marvel line. I might feel differently about these if I was collecting these on card, but as I’m an opener the change is welcome, and they look quite eye-catching on the pegs. Also, the Marvel Universe packaging was designed to house the figure bases / Secret Files Cards which are no longer part of the line, the redesign makes sense from a practical perspective as well.

As for the three new characters, Death’s Head has to be the pick of the bunch. This is the coolest action figure of a character I’d never heard of.  And when I say cool, I mean in a funky, dorky kind of way.  He might be a ‘90s Transformer type character, but he’s been lovingly recreated here with some pretty intricate sculpting that has been supported by very nice paint.



Death’s Head comes with three accessories: a mace, a cleaver-style blade and a shield. The photo on the back of the packaging shows the figure with the two weapons stored on his back, but I can’t see how to make that happen. I am historically accessory-disabled, but if this is actually possible, it’s pretty hard to work out.

Dolly Rating for Death’s Head: 9 out of 10

Whirlwind is one of those retro villains who hasn’t seen much action figure love, and I’m pleased to see him included in this line. As a regular Avengers foe, he fits in nicely with many figures in this line. Customisers who might prefer his more classic shirtless look now have the pieces they need for an easy project, made easier by the fact that the armoured ridges that should be visible on Whirlwind's arms and legs haven't been sculpted or even painted on. While not all the details I'd like to see are there, the paint on my Whirlwind is flawless, and the use of metallic paints really makes this figure nice to look at.



The typical bendy legs of these figures make my Whirlwind a bit bard to pose, but in the end I was able to find some balance so that he can stand in fighting and neutral poses.  It does take a bit of shine off the figure, and so does the lack of definition of his mouth behind his mask, which is unnecessarily mucky.

Dolly Rating for Whirlwind: 6 out of 10

Red She-Hulk has already seen plastic in the 6” Marvel Legends line and now joins the 3 ¾” ranks in this wave. She showcases the newer large female bulk nicely and has an excellent range of articulation and pose-ability. I particularly like the use of softer plastic for her hair, which gives her a good range of neck movement.

She has a basic black bodysuit, but some silver stripes which have been neatly applied. She also had a belt, which is applied as a separate, loose piece. She comes with no other accessories.



The only blight on this figure is some small black markings on the red of her face around her mouth. The figure appears to be cast in red plastic, and this results in some lack of definition on the painted elements of her face. Since the female faces on these figures are usually sculpted in such bland pose, this really causes her to fade away a bit.

Dolly Rating for Red She-Hulk: 8 out of 10

All up, these are fun new additions to the Marvel 3 3/3” world. There’s a really nice mix of classic, new and left of centre characters here to give me hope for the future of this line – whatever it’s called!

You can see a full photo album of these figures at the AFB Facebook Page, and your comments there or here are most welcome!

Until next time!


Thursday, July 10, 2014

The AFB Podcast Episode 124: Funko Legacy Game of Thrones Jon Snow, Kotobukiya ArtFX Hulk


Episode 124 of the AFB Podcast is live at iTunes and is now available for direct downloadDownload and subscribe to the podcast at iTunes now! 

Join Ben, Justin and Scott for this week's toy news and reviews!

This week we check out three great items - there's something for everyone!


Funko Legacy Game of Thrones Jon Snow 6" Figure


Spider-Man Classics Venom Scorpion Sting

Kotobukiya Hulk ArtFX 10" Statue

If you don't use iTunes, you can download Episode 124 here now! Click on the link to listen, or right click to save the file! The podcast will always be available from the “Podcast” tab here - but if you can subscribe and give us positive ratings at iTunes, that will help us greatly! 

The AFB Podcast is also on Stitcher Radio!

Have a listen, and please give us some feedback at podcast@actionfigureblues.com - we might even read out your feedback on the next show!

Happy listening!















Thursday, July 03, 2014

The AFB Podcast Episode 123: NECA Alien Xenomorph Warrior / DC Bombshells Black Canary / Vintage Cobra Commander


Episode 123 of the AFB Podcast is live at iTunes and is now available for direct downloadDownload and subscribe to the podcast at iTunes now! 

Join Scott, John and Ben for this week's toy news and reviews!

This week we check out three great items - there's something for everyone!


NECA'S Alien Xenomorph Warrior

Hasbro's Vintage Mail Away Cobra Commander 

DC Collectibles' Black Canary Bombshells Statue

If you don't use iTunes, you can download Episode 123 here now! Click on the link to listen, or right click to save the file! The podcast will always be available from the “Podcast” tab here - but if you can subscribe and give us positive ratings at iTunes, that will help us greatly! 

The AFB Podcast is also on Stitcher Radio!

Have a listen, and please give us some feedback at podcast@actionfigureblues.com - we might even read out your feedback on the next show!

Happy listening!
















Friday, June 27, 2014

Review: Funko ReAction The Rocketeer 3 3/4" Figure

Once upon a time, this site was simply a place for me to blog about my new purchases. Over time, it has become so much more, and I couldn’t be happier. It’s been so busy doing all the great new stuff that AFB has become, however, that I haven’t posted a review for ages!

While we now review multiple toys every week on our podcast, there is something very enjoyable about getting out the camera and writing down my thoughts about a new acquisition, so I am going to try to get back into the habit and use this space to highlight some items that won’t get full reviews on the show. Who knows, you might see the other AFB hosts posting reviews here as well!

Tonight I’m checking out something quite interesting – the Funko ReAction The Rocketeer 3 ¾ Figure.



Funko has burst on to the collectibles scene and has progressed from pop vinyl to action figures, which has the potential to be very exciting. It’s certainly great to have more players in this game, and the idea of the ReAction Figures is something that really appeals to me – toys that harken back to the carded 3 ¾” figures and “rack toys” of old.



For something to be effectively retro in my eyes, it needs to harken back to something old without being slavish to it, and I’m not certain that’s been achieved here. What would really elevate this line for me would be a more collector-friendly packaging design. The retro carded feel is great – but totally destroyed if you want to open the figure. A design that allowed you to inspect the figure and then display either loose or on card would be something I could see myself attracted to.

That’s really reinforced once you open this toy. It’s cute, but very basic. Simple five points of articulation and with (mostly) acceptable detail and accessories.
Sculpt-wise, there is some very nice detail here, particularly in the Rocketeer’s uniform and his two accessories – his helmet and jet pack.  He stands easily and while the addition of the jetpack requires some rebalancing, it is still easy to find his balance.




Funko’s Pop Vinyl line has been plagued by spotty QC when it comes to paint, and there are issues here too – brown spots on his cream trousers and a few areas of bleed. Especially disappointing is The Rocketeer’s face, which is really lacking in definition and looks sort of sprayed on rather than painted.

Sadly, I pretty much regretted opening this as soon as I did, because it’s an idea that’s better appreciated in theory than in reality. This really comes home once you put on the Rocketeer’s helmet, and the toy instantly becomes a kid dressed up as The Rocketeer for Halloween with a much-too-big helmet on his oversized head. There’s just not enough going for this figure to make it something I’d want to display loose.



Funko has hit on a model that relies on the love of particular licenses and nostalgia to sell product, but I am not sure I see this concept reaching the popularity of the Pop Vinyls. Again, I think that collectors would probably respond to this idea if there was an aspect of the product that elevated it beyond a reproduction style rack toy to a retro “feel” modern figure – a re-openable package or a higher degree of detail in face sculpts, for example.

For a Dolly Rating (now the standard scale of rating toys on the AFB Podcast), I can’t go higher than a 6, and most of that is for the concept rather than the execution. I’m left underwhelmed on too many fronts to go higher.

If you’d like to see a full set of photos of this item, please check out the album on Flickr.

Your thoughts about this item are most welcome – please comment here or over at the AFB Facebook Page!

Until next time!


Scotty
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