5/5/17

Spider Maul, Spider Maul, does whatever a spider does, y'all!

Love or hate Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, almost everyone is on the same page when it comes to the badass tattooed Sith Apprentice Darth Maul.

Maul was idiotically killed off in TPM, but was later revived in the Star Wars: Rebels animated series. First with a six legged insect body, and later with sweet sweet robot legs. Because SCIENCE!

I don't watch Star Wars: Rebels. I also could care less about the Hero Mashers toyline Hasbro has been Hero Mashing down our throats for the past couple years.

However I simply could not pass up this Hero Mashers Darth Maul  (especially since I found him on clearance)...

...which includes both is spider-body and his chicken legs! The 'spider body' is a simple hollow shell, but it's effective.

The chicken legs are solid, but only move at the reverse-knee. Hero Mashers are more visually impressive than they are articulated. This figure looks like he should have joints all over the place ("Hey, it's medicinal! I'm a paraplegic for cryin out loud!")  But it's all in the sculpt, and there's not much actual engineering going on. That';s fine, as this guy would probably be double or triple the price if that were the case.

I have to admit, I'm curious now to see what another Hero masher would look like with Maul's robot-chicken legs! Maybe this Hero Mashers concept isn't so stupid after all.

Nah, it's pretty stupid.

"You lost your legs? Cry me a river."

4/27/17

Spider-Boy, Spider-Boy, does whatever a spider...oi!

As longtime Toyriffic readers know, I loves me some BootLEGOs! I'm constantly perusing eBay for those cheap, shipped-for-free minifigs of characters that LEGO can't or won't make, or copies of those LEGO has made but are too expensive for a man of my limited means.

I've seen some crazy minifigs, and the only thing that surprises me anymore when it comes to bootLEGOs is the fact that they can STILL surprise me!

Case in point: Spider-Boy!

Spider-Boy didn't come with that gun, it's LEGO, but he did come with the web, and a little clear piece so he can hold the web in his hand as if he's shooting it from his wrist. The only problem: as any longtime Spider-Boy can attest, Spider-Boy doesn't have wrist-mounted web shooters. He has a web-shooting gun! DUH!

So yeah, the Chinese BootLEGOers have begun to tap the genius that is the Amalgam Universe. That so very nineties of crossovers that combined DC and Marvel characters and stories into all new and sometimes exciting characters! Can we get a Dark Claw, please?!?!

This is the first time I've experienced a bootLEGO minifig with 'poofy-paint' tampos. Not sure if this is how the minifig was meant to be or if I got an 'off' figure, but it's kind of cool. I like to think that the weird Amalgam Universe is full of stuff like poofy superhero symbols. Because NINETIES and EXTREME!

"Sigh. What am I going to do now? J. Jonah said he'd fire me if I didn't get pics of...dafuq?!?!"

4/20/17

Spider-Hulk, Spider-Hulk, smashes whatever a gamma irradiated spider smashes!

First, let me apologize for not posting for the whole of March. I appreciate the three of you who are still reading. That said, I'm baaaaack!

And not only am I back, but I bring you today some fun pics of one of my Holy Grails that I finally added to my collection: Spider-Hulk!

Back in 2006, Toy Biz was reaching the end of their Spider-Man Classics line. They may have also been close to the end of their license with Marvel, which ended up (and still is) with Hasbro. I'm no Marvel expert, so don't quote me on that. What I do know is that one of the last Spider-Man Classics figures Toy Biz released was Spider-Hulk. I'm pretty sure, as the story goes, Peter Parker somehow gained the powers of The incredible Hulk for a hot minute (and this is not Bruce Banner/Hulk in Spider-PJs). I've not read this specific story in the comics, but I love that Toy Biz made an action figure of this...well...incredible moment!

I saw this figure at retail back in '06 and somehow talked myself out of it. I've regretted that decision ever since, and as is always the case in such situations, Spider-Hulk became a very hard-to-get figure, and has since held a ridiculously high resale value. I've kept my eyes peeled for him for over ten years, hoping to find an economical example, but I've never seen him going for a sane and excusable price...until now!

For some reason beyond my mere human intellect to interpret,  a couple months ago a Chinese ebay seller suddenly began selling loose Spider-Hulks. The auction end prices vary, but have been hovering around an average of $25 bucks for as long as I've been monitoring. Buying loose toys from China can be a risky venture, so I had to ask myself: was it worth tempting fate to get either a) a cheap bootleg, b) a Spider-Hulk with two left feet or c) nothing at all, in an attempt to get Spider-Hulk for a fraction of what he's gone for on the secondary market for the past ten years?

Well the answer was obviously 'yes.'

I'm glad to report that I bid, I won, and lo-and-behold, a couple weeks later a beautiful loose but perfect example of Spider-Hulk arrived at my doorstep! HUZZAH!!!

Of course there are a lot of questions this figure's existence raises. Did Toy Biz have a warehouse full of these gentlemen, just sitting in crates for a decade, waiting for someone to buy them up and liquidate them on eBay? Or did toy Biz themselves, or whatever manufacturer they contracted, find a crate ala the Lost Ark of the Covenant, and after they busted them open and their faces melted off, they decided to offer them up on eBay for us True Believers who never stopped looking and hoping and praying?  Or is he coated in lead paint and was held back from retail sale for safety reasons and I'm going to die soon?

Who cares. I HAVE SPIDER-HULK!.

One last thing: You too could own a Spider-Hulk: As of press time, they are still popping up on eBay and auctions are ending between $20 and $30 with free shipping. I can't guarantee your experience will be the same as mine, but I can guarantee that this is a great price for an otherwise hard to find figure. Search for SpiderHulk and search under 'free shipping', and you should find the auctions easily enough. Good luck!

2/9/17

BootLEGO Jokers HA HA HA HA!

"The pen is truly mightier than the sword. But I left my pen in my other coat."
The BootLEGO makers are at it again, putting out incredible minifigures you didn't know your life was so empty without until you see them!

Jack Nicholson's 'mime' Joker from the 1989 Batman movie! You really get the impression when looking at this minifigure that this is how The Joker would have looked had Tim Burton not held back a bit on his first Batman outing. The minifigure came with a standard LEGO Joker hairpiece but there's no point in having that piece when you have the top hat! He also came with a sword, I assume since LEGO doesn't make a feather quill.

The BootLEGOers often go further than one would think they need to, considering the fact that they are making these figures illegally and selling them for pennies. Mime Joker is no exception, as he includes tails for his fancy coat!

Another BootLEGO Joker new on the scene is Bat-Joker!

Bat-Joker comes with a grappling gun/hook, two faces printed on his head (under the cowl he's Leto Joker, complete with 'Damaged' tattoo on his forehead.) and printing details galore all over the minifig. Another BootLEGO I couldn't live without!

You can find these guys (and more) on eBay for waaay cheaper than your official LEGO minifigure. I'm not saying you shouldn't be buying official LEGO minifigures, you should, but when things like these don't exist in any official form, well, a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do.