Friday, 30 December 2011

Figure Review: Spider-Man 2099 (Spider-Man Classics)

In the year 2001, Toy Biz launched its Spider-Man Classics line, which lasted for two waves. These figures would pave the way for Toy Biz's Marvel Legends line in terms of attention to detail and articulation. With that in mind, when I got the figure -- which was a KB Toys exclusive -- a couple years ago, I was impressed with the figure's articulation, which I will talk about some more. I was used to the Spider-Man and X-Men figures that were based off the cartoons and didn't have as much poseability, so the Spidey 2099 figure made a wonderful addition to my collection. Plus, every Spider-Man Classics figure came with a comic book and a display base, which to me meant that Toy Biz gave more than was expected, which carried over into its Marvel Legends line.

For those who are not familiar with Spider-Man 2099, basically the story goes that a geneticist named Miguel O'Hara tried to recreate the abilities of the original Spider-Man in others. What ends up happening, however, is that in the process of recreating the original Spider-Man's abilities, an accident occurs and causes O'Hara's DNA to be re-written with a spider's genetic code. Anyway, onto the review...

Sculpting - 9/10

Spider-Man 2099 is a great sculpt. Toy Biz made the figure as comic accurate as possible without overdoing it. I like how the details -- such as the muscle folds on the back -- aren't just drawn on. In fact, it looks like they have a bit of depth. For the most part, the sculpt is simple but effective.

Paint - 8/10

The paint on this figure looks pretty good and I like the fact that there's dark paint utilized, such as the above picture shows. That gives the figure more of a gritty look and without that paint, the figure would've looked bland. My only gripe is that in some areas, the paint looks like it either got chipped off or a different kind of blue was utilized to cover up a mistake. Either way, it looks inconsistent and out of place.


Articulation - 9/10

From what I gather, the figure has thirty points of articulation...

  • hinged toes
  • hinged ankles
  • rotating calves
  • double jointed knees
  • rotating thighs just below the hips
  • ball jointed legs
  • rotating waist
  • mid-torso joint
  • ball jointed arms
  • double jointed elbows
  • rotating wrists
  • hinged wrists
  • hinged fingers
  • rotating neck
  • rotating head
Taking into account what Toy Biz was able to do in terms of articulation, since Toy Biz had its limits, I think the articulation is still pretty good by today's standards. I imagine I could up with a few poses for the figure if I really took my time. I can see how indivdually jointed fingers would have worked, for example, but for the sake of the figure being a Spider-Man figure, I don't mind the fact that only the two middle fingers are artciulated because I pretty much have the figure looking like he's about to shoot out some web anyway.

Accessories - 8/10

The figure comes with a display base and a reprint of Spider-Man 2099 #1. The display base is a portion of a brick wall with graffiti on it that reads "Spidey was here." Aside from that, the display base has a lot of nice detail, most notably the cracks in the bricks. There is also an optional waist clip which can be attached to the base for the purpose of mounting the figure to a wall. The waist clip allows for the figure to be positioned either up or down, left or right, or diagonally. On the back of the base, there is a peg hole so the figure can be mounted to a wall, which is what I'll probably do.

Overall - 9/10

This is a figure that I would highly recommend, especially if you're into Spider-Man and are looking to up a figure or two from the Classics line. The figure can be found on either Amazon or eBay, but if you prefer to look elsewhere, check your local comics shop or any toy show or comic conventions in your area. From what I gather, the online stores seem to be the most expensive.

Friday, 23 December 2011

The 2011 R2D2 Christmas Spectacular

This little piece of low-res frolics & fun was introduced last Christmas and is now back with some extras and new clips inserted in.

Also, keep a look out for a teaser preview included of something new I am unveiling in 2012. Enjoy the video and Merry Christmas!

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Christmas Tat Rundown # 4 - Disney Princess Christmas Stocking

 Had to show off my daughter Blaise’s first Christmas Stocking (rrp £6.99, Toys R US) as it’s a girly item and I don’t showcase many of those.

First off, it’s a stocking! It’s also pink and features an illustration of the Disney Princess collective. Best of all - this is a tough and sturdy fireplace hanger that should last for a few years to come. I wanted to get something that Blaise could grow up with and look forward to seeing every December, unlike the run of the mill felt stockings that fall apart after so long (I’ve been through many!).

Now all I have to do is fill it up with goodies!

Monday, 12 December 2011

Santa's Workshop (1933)

A little gem of a cartoon featuring the antics of Santa and co getting ready for Christmas Eve.

Good old-fashioned festive fun. Will be posting more cartoon shorts in the future.

Saturday, 10 December 2011

MOTU Headgear 1984

Me around Christmas 1984 trying to wear a Man E Faces figure on my head. My mum is looking onward and isn't too impressed.


A must have stop for any Tardis owner. Insert Your Caption.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Christmas Tat Rundown # 3 - Hero Turtles Ornaments

A great e-bay acquisition if I ever came across one. Original 1990 edition UK Teenage Mutant ‘Hero’ Turtles Christmas ornaments!

These are painted and wooden and in my opinion have aged well. I never knew about these when they were out, so I’m glad that 21 years later I managed to own a set. The decorations individually feature one of the awesome foursome doing something a little festive. Here is the rundown… 

A mixture of switching to de-caf and the holiday spirit has mellowed Raphael out. The usually bad tempered turtle has taken to hanging up baubles rather than whackbags.  

Ice-skating is Leo’s thing, only the glitter effect of the ice makes it look like someone has sabotaged the rink surface with salt. Surely the Foot Clan are behind this!

Like his renaissance namesake, Mikey has taken to sculpting. So far he’s managed to sculpt a snowman of pal Leonardo.
Donnie hits the slopes with a set of non-jetpowered skis.. 

These are recommended to anyone who's a TMNT fan and lover of Christmas tat alike. Free these items from their plastic tombs and display them with pride. 

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Christmas Tat Rundown # 2 - Snoopy 60th Anniversary Blocks

2010 marked the 60th Anniversary of Charles Shultz’s Charlie Brown & Snoopy characters. I grabbed these through the American site of Amazon last year and used a pals address as a halfway house just to get these (thanks Wes).

So here’s Christmas 2011 and I finally get to display the Snoopy goodness. Charlie Brown, Linus (sans blanket) and Snoopy are here amongst the lovable Christmas branch and some baubles to spell out the word ‘Christmas’ for all to read.

This is especially a must-have set for those who enjoyed the still widely-celebrated 1965 classic A Charlie Brown Christmas. 

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Christmas Tat Rundown # 1 - Playmobil Santa & pals

I came across this small set of Christmas Playmobil figures in Toys R Us and impulse bought them. As you can see from the photos they have a certain charm about them. This small set is one of many for the current Playmobil Christmas promotion (including Nativity sets and so forth), and I have to say it blows this years lack of seasonal Lego offerings out of the frosty water.

Pack Includes: ‘Skinny’ Santa w/Moses staff, bag of toys (football, doll and bear) and Snowman pal w/broom.

Santa is thin! Perhaps he’s a villager dressed up as the jolly man ready to do a grotto. Santa’s also brought his Snowman pal complete with a broom, branch-like arms and a saucepan hat. Snowman’s carrot nose is also bendy and adds extra amusement. In short both main figures are great!

The accessories are also great! I’ve no idea why this Slimline St Nick is equipped with a Moses staff, but it seems to work. The toy sack does what its meant to do and helps keep the smaller toy accessories in one place. The teddy bear can stand alone and almost acts like a bonus 3rd figure, unlike the doll. The doll however bears a slight resemblance to Buck Rodgers character – Twiki, giving it some credential at least. The football rather than being round is designed cleverly with many flat surfaces giving it the means to stay still instead of rolling away.

For £5.99 the cost is spread out across two really cool figures and some amusing accessories. The set could be described as a mini-grotto of sorts, with the rest left to the imagination of the kid owning it. I can see this integrating easily into an already existing collection of Playmobil toys. Best 6 pounds you’ll ever spend whether its Christmas or not.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Doctor Who Everyday

Not only is it the 48th Anniversary of Dr Who, it is also the 1st birthday of Doctor Who Everyday - a dedicated, daily analytical blog showcasing episodes.
The blog started this day last year with a look at 'Unearthly Child' 47 years from its original broadcast and has dedicated itself to Dr Who eps that day forth.

Today, Phil Ayres looks at 'Death to the Daleks' part 1. Feel free to check it out. 

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Pinkie-Pie Takes a Stroll

Here I wanted to take a slight trip out of the comfort-zone and produce something a little different than my usual offerings of digi-decoupage.

Before anyone comments, the G3 Pinkie-Pie belongs to my daughter J. However, if I owned a few ‘Bronies’ I’d be open about it. The new animated serial is great by the way! Props to Lauren Faust.

The background courtesy of an MLP Birthday card, and various props are from veryicon and brainsplat .com. Credit to those guys!

Making this was actually therapeutic and a lot of fun as most of my other images are dark and involve conflict of some kind. Maybe I need to do more cute and cuddly things in the future J . More bright colours in my portfolio can’t go amiss.  

Dedicated to: my daughter Blaise, Bronies, Hasbro, and lots of others.

My Little Pony is copyright and property of Hasbro 2011 ©

Thursday, 20 October 2011

The Ultimate Staredown

Something I did last week to humor this much talked about topic in Doctor Who fandom. What if a Weeping Angel and a Silent had a staredown? (Only those in the know with Doctor Who will understand). I am guessing that Steve Moffat may one day have that question answered in a future Doctor Who episode. Could be good.

As you can see, I am having a real blast with the Doctor Who Micro Figures! Cheap, cheerful but also addictive if you like Army building and chase figures.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

3rd Doctor VS The Mutatoes

Click to enlarge

 OK, I’ll confess. The ‘alien’ plantlife in this shot is actually a pile of potatoes I forgot about from the summer. Instead of turning to vodka they rather ‘mutated’ over the months of neglect – hence the name ‘Mutatoes’.

This probably would have worked better with the 4th Doctor, but I wanted to use the 3rd Doctor and a high-depth backdrop that wasn’t concrete this time around.

Had a lot of fun with this shoot and will eventually pick out a colour version I’d like to use.

Sunday, 25 September 2011


Summer blockbuster action as The Green Lantern takes it to the bad guys. Insert your Caption.

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Cybermen Rampage!

More Doctor Who photography, this time featuring the 8th Doctor going toe to toe with the dreaded Cybermen!

Monday, 12 September 2011

Fort Max Charity Auction

Behold! The American released Holy Grail of all Transformers toys - The behemoth known as Fortress Maximus. The chance to own one is here courtesy of Toy-Fu.

All proceeds from the auction will go to Mary's Meals/Scottish Relief

As I type this, the auction stands at £375 as the top bid with a target of £550. I predict the end result will go beyond this with more than just the happy face of the new owner, but the many others this auction will benefit.

Saturday, 3 September 2011

PC Pond

click to enlarge
Grabbed my first packet from Doctor Who Character Building (Series 2) yesterday and hit the chase figure jackpot.

Amy Pond in police uniform is allegedly limited to one figure per case, as is River Song who is otherwise available with the expensive Tardis control set.

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

August Acquisition Continued...

Still having fun with my small-scaled collection of the 11 incarnations of The Doctor. Recommended for all toy collecting Whovians.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

August Acquisition

My personal toy purchasing has taken a slowdown, now that I'm pacing the interest a little differently.

I am enjoying right now the newly released Doctor Who: Character Building 11 Doctors set. All 11 regenerations to date in brickform and presented in a neat display box. Managed to break the 6th and 7th Doctors free today, but they ran into a spot of bother...  Click picture to Enlarge

Friday, 22 July 2011


I’ve been asked on numerous occasions what I thought of the third Transformers movie (Dark of the Moon) after I went to go watch it a fortnight ago.

For me, it was the crushing blow. The Michael Bay interpretation of Transformers has given me a headache I will never forget. Dark of the Moon (2011) was an impressive, yet busy ‘more than meets the eye’ fighting robot experience; but once again full of irrelevant and random silliness that was an unwelcome ingredient of the previous two films. And that was just the start.

To its credit, the Bay Trilogy has made Hasbro a lot of money and delivered commercial success again to the Transformers brand. The Bay Trilogy had also imagined skilfully what Transformers might look like if they were real beyond fiction. The ‘ugly’ designs actually grew on me a bit. However, the bad really outweighs the good in the case of this movie trio.

This structured portrayal of Transformers is so wrong on many accounts. In a nutshell; the attitude, characters, storylines and general execution are all just done badly. What I feel should have been a family series of films has turned out to be something unnecessarily smutty, sinister, air-headed and masochistic. Since when was the heroic Optimus Prime a merciless cold-blooded killer? 

I feel that many have accepted this version of Transformers because it is simply there and there is no silver screen alternative (yet). In short, I think many have just ‘made do’ and made the best of what has been offered. Beggars can’t be choosers, right?

I cannot endorse this version of Transformers, especially to children. These films are easily 15+ affairs, but the merchandise based on it is aimed at a younger market. It makes me wonder what the suits were thinking in regards to target audience. The trilogy feels like a big mess, and I am not just talking from a moral standpoint. It certainly feels like a lot of wrong choices were made in the process.

I am certainly done with this era of 'tainted' Transformers history. Here is hoping the Bayverse is a stepping stone into something better. I gave the 3 films a chance, but I feel now is the time to dismiss them. I am sure there are fans of this Transformers medium and everyone in the fandom likes what they like (and are entitled to), but I won’t own the DVDs or view any future features if they continue in its direction. I am happily washed of it all.

Hasbro and Paramount seriously should consider a clean slate.  No pun intended.

Now, Transformers: Prime! A medium with so many praises to be sung from a long term changing bot fan such as me. Stay tuned readers!


Saturday Strike-plane Silliness. 
The turbulent trio of the Decepticons are set to tear up the skies, but Skywarp doesn't seem himself today. Insert your Caption