Archive for the ‘Toys’ Category

It Came From The Toy Chest – Part 5

2014/05/11

When it comes to emergency alt modes, beggars can’t be choosers.

Talk about being top heavy.

Talk about being top heavy.

Today’s model is Transformers (Generation 1) Fortress Maximus by Hasbro/Takara.

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Variations on a Theme – Part 3: Zarana With Earrings

2012/03/18

If you read the previous entry in this ongoing series, you’re probably assuming that you have things all figured out this time around. And if that’s the case, then you’re in for a pretty big surprise.

Our contestant today is Zarana, the lone female Dreadnok from the fifth wave of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero toyline releases in 1986. Once again, the most frequently seen version is on the left while the more difficult to find and valuable variant is on the right.

Zartan realized that his sister's plastic surgery addiction had gone too far.

As you can see, the earrings are just about the least of the changes that were made to this figure. Shortly after Zarana’s initial release, her rather original large head was replaced with a completely different, smaller sculpt with more feminine, delicate, and petite facial features. The difference is actually rather striking when seen from up close.

Zarana head sculpt comparison (from left to right): front, profile, back, overhead, and three-quarter views.

Exactly why this change was made is anyone’s guess, though I personally consider it an improvement. If nothing else, it bears a much greater resemblance to the character’s depiction in her own cardback art.

There's nothing sexier than a hot chick with power tools.

On a final note, I’ve noticed that Zarana is just one in a long list of action figures in this line that have extremely shoddy gold paint applications. What makes it especially bad in this case is that the variant of the day’s extremely large earrings sometimes end up being completely flesh-colored, making it look like she has stretched earlobes. Either way, she still fetches two or three times the price as her standard counterpart does, so maybe she’s getting the last laugh after all…

Variations on a Theme – Part 2: Dark Green Gloves Copperhead

2012/03/14

This entry in the series will be a pretty short one, and, to be honest, the title pretty much says it all.

Our subject today is the Cobra Water Moccasin pilot Copperhead, who was part of the third wave of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero toyline releases in 1984. The most commonly found version is on the left and the variant of interest on the right.

A snake in the grass is nothing compared to two snakes on the water.

The initial release of Copperhead had dark green gloves and armbands, while the later one not only had light green gloves and armbands but also paint highlights of the same tone added to the fin and sides of his helmet. Of these variants – which have become unimaginatively (but accurately) christened Dark Green Gloves Copperhead and Light Green Gloves Copperhead, respectively, by collectors – the former is more difficult to find than the latter and goes for around two to three times as much if my past experiences on eBay are any indication.

For more information on Copperhead, please refer to his article on the Yo Joe! website.

It Came From The Toy Chest – Part 4

2012/02/15

It’s easier to pimp your ride if you are the ride.

"I turn into a sportscar. Robo-bitches love sportscars."

Today’s models are Transformers (Generation 1) Sunstreaker by Hasbro/Takara and the Drossel von Flügel (Normal and Flight Unit Obruchev) capsule toys by Yujin/TakaraTomy A.R.T.S.

It Came From The Toy Chest – Part 3

2012/01/30

All kinds of love are encouraged in The Raging Fanboy toy chest…though techno-lesbianism is admittedly a bit rare around these parts.

Who says female electrical connectors are incompatible with one another?

Today’s models are (from left to right): Transformers Animated Arcee by Hasbro, MGT-01 Delicate Warrior by iGear ToysTransformers: Revenge of the Fallen Arcee by Hasbro, and TRNS-01 (Transitional Robot Neural Soldier 01) Valkyrie by Impossible Toys.

Variations on a Theme – Part 1: Fuera de la Ley (Argentinian Destro)

2012/01/26

This latest series is dedicated to the wonderful(ly insane) world of toy collecting and will showcase variants: alternate versions of a given toy that differ from one another in ways ranging from subtle (stickers or paint applications) to more profound (materials used, plastic colors, or changes made to molds during production to correct design flaws or for purely aesthetic reasons).

We’ll be kicking things off with Fuera de la Ley by Plastirama Toys, the Argentinian version of Destro from the second wave of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero toyline releases in 1983. For reference purposes, your garden variety North American version of the figure is located on the left and the variant of the day on the right in the following picture:

"Nuestras cabezas son buenas y brillantes!"

There’re a couple of key features separating Destro and Fuera de la Ley, which I’ll be covering in order of decreasing obviousness (please note that the following list is not exhaustive):

1. The most prominent difference would be the shades of red used in their costumes: while Destro is giving off more of a ketchup vibe with his, Fuera de la Ley’s deep, dark crimson is reminiscent of the color of blood. Score one for Argentina in the badass department, though even this barely manages to offset the stupidity of the character’s indigenous name (which translates into English as the descriptive-yet-highly-unimaginative “Outside the Law”).

2. Destro’s shoulder rivets have been painted black while Fuera de la Ley’s retain their shiny metallic appearance.

3. In a classic example of blink-and-you’ll-miss it, these figures have different waistpieces. For some unknown reason, a black version of the one used for the 1983 incarnations of Doc and Duke was substituted for the standard Destro waistpiece.

Waistpieces (from left to right): Destro (1983), Fuera de la Ley (1983), Doc (1983), Duke (1983), and Gung-Ho (1983).

Note that the article on Fuera de la Ley on the Yo Joe! website – which is where I first learned about this variant – contains a factual error: while similar in appearance, Gung-Ho‘s waistpiece is not the same as Doc and Duke’s. Though both have belts sporting a cross-hatch pattern, the former has a square buckle and no pouches while the latter has a circular buckle and two front pouches. Also, Gung-Ho’s pants have a single vertical and horizontal crease while Doc and Duke’s have a double vertical crease.

Special thanks to G and the ever-helpful Trina Swank for Spanish language assistance.

It Came From The Toy Chest – Part 2

2012/01/14

Why use a Robot Master weapon when your entire body can be a weapon?

Wax on, wax off. Breathe in through nose, out the mouth...

Today’s models are the Mega Man 1/10 Scale Full Action Plastic Kits of Proto Man, Roll, and Mega Man by Kotobukiya.

It Came From The Toy Chest – Part 1

2011/12/21

When you have too many toys and too much time on your hands, things can get real weird real fast. Case in point:

Given that Mumm-Ra's undead, a shotgun should work wonders on him.

Today’s models are the Highschool of the Dead – Saya Takagi 1/8 Scale Pre-Painted Figure by Chara-Ani and Thundercats Classic Lion-O by Bandai.


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