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Final Faction

Seems to be getting to be an annual tradition for me, unexpectedly "discovering" some new toy line in January of a new year.

In 2019, it was Lanard’s Primal Clash line of dinosaur-riding soldiers.

Last year, in 2020 it was again Lanard but with an Alien Collection.

Now in 2021, it’s Dollar Tree‘s Final Faction.


During the first weekend of the new year while browsing a local Dollar Tree store, I happened to notice some generic "GI Joe-like" figures. I’m not sure what actually caught my attention…perhaps the packaging, perhaps the logo alone, perhaps the sheer quantity of figures on pegs. Maybe it was the Mech character. Whatever the case, I ended up flipping through figures on the pegs to see what the assortment was like, and noticed that the back of the cards showed several characters.

While there were none of the alien/villain characters…they had all 5 of the "good guy" Alpha Team 1 characters, so I figured for the whopping $5 to get one of each figure, not bad…and bought ’em.

final_faction_assortment1_alpha_team_1

There was a QR code on the back of the cards referencing some cartoon–and maybe that was also a selling point for me?–but the overall packaging was a definite draw.

Each character has a unique card front, which seems like a definite rarity in "dollar-store toys." Even better, each card has a unique back with a "profile" and the classic "clip and collect" note…hitting a huge nostalgia point for me.

The scale of the figures is great, too–3.75"/4" so they’re right on-par with most other figures, and likely could fit right in with modern retro GI Joe or even Star Wars figures.

Another bit of nostalgia/classic-ness is that in addition to the basic figures themselves, there are multiple accessory packs. Most of the characters come with accessories as-is, but these packs let you outfit the group with even more weaponry or add onto the A.C.R.M. and such.

While the A.C.R.M. profile indicates it’s a singular unit piloted by a single specific character…I see it as something cool for a "good guy army-builder," which seems a bit of a rarity to me.

alpha_team_1_outofpacks

Here are the five unique "good guy" (Alpha Team 1) figures out of their packaging.

They’re not overly-articulated…you basically have the classic 5 points of articulation–arms and legs move, and head rotates. You also have holes for pegged accessories…particularly on the ACRM.

In watching some YouTube review of the figures, someone compared these to Happy Meal toys, and I think that’s a great point/comparison. These aren’t heavy figures by any means, and definitely DO seem to be well on-par with (if not significantly surpassing MODERN HM toys)…but they’re ONLY ONE DOLLAR EACH.

I’m not ever sure you can buy "just the prize" from McDonald’s for $1.

And the lack of articulation–to me–is a benefit. Less articulation is less points for the figures to break. Less moving parts to destabilize the figures in displaying them. Less for whatever meager paintjobs to gum up and incite the individual into accidentally breaking their figure while trying to get an articulated joint to move.

And below are the "profile cards" for these Alpha Tea 1 figures:

profilecards_alphateam1_msgt_steadfast

profilecards_alphateam1_sgt_ruck

profilecards_alphateam1_sgt_steel

profilecards_alphateam1_spc_shift

profilecards_alphateam1_acrm


And what line of toys is complete without some cool villains?!?

We have five "hero"/"good guy" characters…but only three unique Kharn/alien/villain figures.

final_faction_assortment1_kharn

However…these seem to be generic alien/villains. None of them are named characters. So it’s basically three classes of alien invaders. The basic Drone…the much beefier Brute…and then the mechanical Synthoid.

And considering the mere $1 price point per figure…these are excellent to "army-build!"

kharn_outofpacks

I’m content with the Brutes and Synthoids…but I feel like the Drones should at least match, if not outnumber the Brutes and Synthoids combined, quantity-wise…which means I’ll be interested in getting at least 9 more Drones.

The Brutes and Drones come with handheld blasters, while the Synthoids don’t come with any additional accessories.

That’s definitely where the accessory packs will come in–adding onto the Drone and Brute, but interchangeable alternate arms (literally!) for the Synthoids.

Below are the "profiles" of these:

profilecards_kharn_drone

profilecards_kharn_brute

profilecards_kharn_synthoid


I’ve assembled this quick collection with a visit to a whopping six different Dollar Tree stores. I particularly wanted multiples on the Kharn, BUT even as cheap as these are and plentiful if in stock at all…I didn’t want to "clear the pegs" at any of the stores, so snagged several from each store, to leave stuff to be further discovered by others.

Though one store only had the heroes, another only had the aliens, and only a couple had the accessory packs.

final_faction_cardback_alphateam1

Considering the price of even ONE modern GI Joe Retro figure ($12.93 at Walmart IF even in-stock there at all and being ‘scalped’ online for up to $40-something), or the price of a single larger figure (Marvel Legends in the $20-25 range up to $30+ each or $50+ for 2-packs) or NECA singles ($27-30+ for single figures, $50-$53+ for 2-packs, etc) my entire 26-figure collection of Final Faction for under $30 is extremely gratifying. Even allowing for an additional $10ish for 9 more Drone figures (in time) isn’t bad. And a bunch of accessory packs aren’t bad.

Especially considering the sheer quantity and bulk of the collection as a whole vs. merely getting UP TO FOUR figures for any other line.

And while these are Dollar Tree exclusive…based on looking the up on the chain’s website, figures are something like 40 to a case. Forget that 6 to a case or 12 to a case nonsense of stuff at Target or such. These may be exclusive but they don’t seem RARE, and they’re certainly not one-per-store or something that’s disappearing in SECONDS to MINUTES from the store with crowds of people hanging out waiting for the store to open to get in and get ’em etc.

final_faction_cardback_kharn

I saw some $5+ individual figures listed by third-party sellers on Amazon, but that’s somewhat to be expected…being on that platform at all IS going to be third-party and marked up, since these aren’t just available for ANY store to order. (Though $5 + s/h while knowing these are $1 figures is rather steep and DOES technically constitute 500%+ markup from retail price).

But "scalping" and such is a topic for some other post.

These figures are apparently pretty new–from what I can tell, they’ve only been out since November 2020 or so. If your local Dollar Tree doesn’t have them in-stock, presumably they’re coming (or already sold through?). That said…if their site actually FUNCTIONS (it did not, for me, initially, and I’m actually glad it didn’t) apparently you can order certain quantities or full cases of the figures.

I "assumed" there was some whole "season" of multiple episodes out there…but from what I’ve found/seen, there’s really only 1 episode and then a gallery of the figures, and a gallery of the characters.

The episode is listed as "episode 1" suggesting more, but…time will tell.

For price, product, etc…even just a week’s novelty of hunting down these figures in these quantities and a random (if cheesy/laughable) mini-movie as made them VERRRRY worthwhile to me, and I’ve gotten MY money’s worth…even if I get no further Drones…or any more figures for the line, period.

But two particular characters from the cartoon that are not represented are Churro–the dog with a dog-mech, and the Kharn’s specific big-boss. Part of the appeal of these figures is they’re $1/each…but for a larger boss and a dog-with-mech, I’d certainly gladly spend $5 each!

final_faction_blogtrailer

The Alien/Predator Shelves as of 2/8/2020

I posted a couple weeks ago about discovering the Alien Collection toys from Lanard.

I had not initially bought the APC vehicle, but did wind up going back for that. I also purchased a $10 MegaConstrux egg thing shaped like an Alien egg that came with a packet of slime/ooze with pieces to build two "minifigure" Xenomorphs.

I also came across a couple online listings for classic Kenner Aliens figures, and got a "regular-sized" Alien Queen as well as a Gorilla Alien and a Bull Alien.

All together, my once rather sparse shelf filled up fast to the point of nearly overflowing. Such that I may end up moving the Predators off just to have a little more room for the Aliens…but time will tell!

Anyway, though I’ve shown off the collection in the past, here’s the most up-to-date version of my Aliens/Predator shelves!

aliens_collection_february08a

The figures and such get the top of the shelving unit for the maximum amount of space and to accommodate the rather large size of the Queens.

While I’m pretty sure I’m missing a couple books, I do at least have most of the Alien/Aliens line of novels, and most of the Predator ones, though I’m missing the Dark Hors Press (DH Press) novels as well as the most recent anthology and film adaptations.

Though for the moment Mage Knight and MechWarrior: Dark Age still share the shelf…a major MW acquisition last year means that series is going to have to get its own space…which will also allow a little more space for the Alien/Aliens books and such.

aliens_collection_february08b

The graphic novels have their own space on a different, larger bookcase to allow for the size of the Library Editions (and even the regular-sized graphic novel editions).

Adding purchases from the latter part of last year in, there’s no longer room for the films to all share the shelf, so I had to move the individual Alien films and a couple misc. items elsehwere. (Perhaps they’ll help replace MechWarrior on the novels’ shelf?)

As it is, I left the Alien Anthology blu-ray set and the newer films.

I’m not sure if Dark Horse is going to continue their full-size collections of the older Aliens material, so I’m not at all in any hurry to replace the omnibii.with those…though I’d prefer the newer format. Time will tell!

alien_predator_shelves_as_of_20200208_blogtrailer

The Alien Collection Haul 1/27/2020

I’d known Walmart was clearing a LOTTA stuff out. And I’d been a bit annoyed that they’d so quickly cleared out the Primal Clash line that had so quickly captured my attention. All the more when they apparently got rid of all of the Lanard branded stuff I’d come to recognize.

Last night, though, simply checking for the black-suited Superman figure from Spin Master, I noticed some new stuff in the Walmart toy aisle that I had not seen before.

lanard_aliens_20200127_walmart01

Some things bearing a remarkable resemblance to Aliens. As in Xenomorphs. But no…that couldn’t be…could it???

lanard_aliens_20200127_walmart02

Xenomorph SwarmAlien Queen…ok, maybe. But what the heck were these brightly-colored things???

lanard_aliens_20200127_walmart03

"Alien Collection," apparently. OK. But really?!?

These things have nothing on NECA and their high-end $25+/each highly detailed line.

But what these DO have?

NOSTALGIA!

I started to walk on by. Brightly-colored xenomorphs? Just this past weekend I’d yet again lamented (to myself, of course) the bright-colored "arcade"-coloring from the old Aliens vs. Predator game and how not-fond I am of the bright colors.

And then it struck me.

One of my earliest memories of the Aliens franchise. What I now know were the Kenner toys. That Mom took one look at and would not buy. And yet I wound up getting into the property anyway via the novelizations of the third movie and the Dark Horse comics and eventually the movies themselves.

And the price of these things…

$20 for the Alien Queen. $15 for the APC and Power Loader sets; and a mere $10 for each of the 3 Xenomorph Swarm boxes (with an Alien and a Colonial Marine plus accessories). I’ll almost certainly get more as time goes on…these things are just too cool to pass up and army-build, particularly the Xenomorphs!

I passed on the APC as I’m not much of a vehicles guy when it comes to toys, and I know I can at least make room for the Xenos on and around my shelves, a vehicle might be needlessly bulky and take up more space that could be better-taken by another Alien or two. Of course, I might change my mind later…I also had the fact of grabbing five sets where I hadn’t even known these existed when I walked into Walmart.

Anyway…here’s my initial haul, showing the sets I got (front and back) as well as the Alien "profile" cards closer-up.


Alien Queen

lanard_aliens_20200127_alien_queen_front

Front of the package…

lanard_aliens_20200127_alien_queen_back

Back of the package…

lanard_aliens_20200127_alien_queen_profile

"profile" of the Queen…

lanard_aliens_20200127_life_cycle_chart

A handy-dandy chart showing the life-cycle of the Xenomorphs.


The Power Loader

lanard_aliens_20200127_power_loader_front

Front of the package…

lanard_aliens_20200127_power_loader_back

Back of the package…


Runner Alien 

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_runner_front

From the front…

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_runner_back

Back of the box…

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_runner_profile

…and the "profile."


Alien Warrior

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_warrior_front

Front…

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_warrior_back

Back…

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_warrior_profile

Profile.


Alien Drone

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_drone_front

The front…

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_drone_back

The back…

lanard_aliens_20200127_xenomorph_swarm_drone_profile

The profile.


As I touched on above…these are fairly reminiscent of the old Kenner line of Aliens figures. Though like the books from Titan the last few years, it seems the brand has moved back to the Alien designation moreso than the plural.

Though as a casual but very interested fan, it’s easy enough to just go with the Aliens title. If you’re reading this, you’d know what I’m talking about OR not really care, I suspect.

While the Primal Clash line was basically one wave and done (that I could tell) I really hope that these are NOT all that get put out for this line. I’d LOVE to see some "army-builder" packs of the various Xenomorphs, even if they were just different colors swapped around the existing molds.

I’m looking forward to getting the time to sit down and get all of these unboxed, and certainly go from there!

lanard_aliens_20200127_blogtrailer

Showing Off the Shelves: Kotobukiya X-Men ’92

Earlier in the year, I discovered the Kotobukiya line of X-Men ’92 figures/models/statues.Where I’d originally only intended to get Rogue and Gambit, that quickly expanded until finally, I wound up with the entire line (that I’m presently aware of)!

kotobukiya_xmen92a

Professor X and Phoenix/Jean Grey were the only figures to come as single-characters, all the rest came in packs of 2. Jubilee came with Wolverine, and Storm came with Bishop.

kotobukiya_xmen92b

Gambit and Rogue came together, which is what set me off on this entire line. Cyclops and Beast make up the final pair.

The Bishop/Storm set was the most expensive for me, and I paid more than I’d have preferred–still a bit of buyer’s remorse there–but after missing one heckuva sale price at Black Friday, I decided to splurge and order them from BigBadToyStore just to HAVE them and not have to worry about them becoming even MORE extremely-exspensive if they’re "out of print" or such.

Despite that/leaving the cost off to the side…I really dig the set, and would certainly prefer to see more releases for it.

Most immediately, a "regular" Jean Grey, perhaps paired with a Morph (possibly with an "extra" head for "Dark Morph"); and then of course, some villains.

Magneto and Mr. Sinister would be definites for me, along with Apocalypse, perhaps Mystique, Blob, Pyro, and Avalanche. Perhaps swap Juggernaut for Mr. Sinister if we’d keep to the first season, though Jean in her Phoenix form is from beyond the 2nd season, even, so…yeah.

It’d even be great to see a sentinel, perhaps…though for the price of these-sized figures, I hate to consider what a Sentinel would cost from Kotobukiya!

Despite wanting more…this present set pretty much perfectly fits on two "floating" wall shelves I bought on Amazon; it wasn’t until I was mounting the shelves to the wall that I realized they’d be good for these figures.

I may look into getting some more of these shelves in the new year when I do some re-arranging of the basement space; I have a number of ideas there (plus thoughts toward some alternate shelving as most of my shelves have bowed significantly, and I reconfigure the overall space a bit to accommodate the last couple of years).

Time will definitely tell, though…as always!

kotobukiya_xmen92_blogtrailer

80th Anniversary Batman Imaginext Singles

After about 4 weeks and more than two-dozen Target visits, I had finally managed to get the Neca Bebop and Rocksteady two-pack a few weeks back. I feel like that was ONE OF the, if not THE most hassle I’ve ever had finding a particular toy at non-scalper prices. I’m not after first-editions, they aren’t SDCC-exclusives, etc.

ANYWAY.

imaginext_batman_singles_sarah

I’d found out about a series of Imaginext Batman figures for the character’s 80th anniversary (WHY is there virtually NOTHING for Superman, but EVERYTHING for BATMAN?!?).

A few days after learning of their existence, I opted to go ahead and check for them at the local Walmart.

Which ONLY had 2 of the figures–the Green Lantern one and the Justice one.

Of course, the one I most wanted was the Knightquest one!

For the price, I went ahead and got the two, figuring I’d regret it later if I didn’t.

I also decided to visit a second Walmart since the one I was at first ALSO did NOT have the only other thing I’d gone in for (treating the figures as a secondary objective).

imaginext_batman_singles

The second Walmart had all 5, so I was able to get the 3 I was unable to at the first, and have what I believe is the complete set. (IF there are more than 5 in the series, I am blissfully unaware!).

And I was simply amazed at the fact of being able to go out–ONE evening, a mere TWO visits to a store–and actually being able to find what I was looking for!

EXTREMELY refreshing after the frustration and discouragement trying to get the Bebop and Rocksteady pack!

I am NOT a "thrill of the hunt" kinda person for most things…especially when they’re ARTIFICIALLY-LIMITED and such or seem like some one-off. With toys–figures, statues, whatever–if it’s cool, if it’s desirable such that I want one…I just want the publisher to LET ME give them my money and be done.

Anyway…these remind me a bit of HotWheels in there being this mini-set and there being several figures, with a cardback featuring some cover or other piece of art that the figure represents.

But for me personally…these are much more appealing, as they can be opened and displayed with other small figures without having to worry about them rolling off a shelf or such.

If I’d gone for only 2 or 3 of these, I’d probably leave out the Green Lantern and Zur-En-Arr ones and possibly the Justice one. But not being terribly expensive, and not being able to change the past, I’m happy to have all 5.

imaginext_batman_singles_blogtrailer

NECA Aliens: Alien Queen Deluxe

This shows just how far behind I’ve gotten in producing content for this blog! I got this about FIVE WEEKS ago! But only just now getting around to sharing/posting about it!

I’d seen this several years ago in a Toys R Us, but at the time it was wayyy outta my price range. Of course, I spent much of 2018 contemplating stuff in the price range, and finally pulled the trigger on the most expensive toys I’ve ever bought: the NECA Baby Turtles, a (non-NECA) Power Rangers Legacy Megazord, the NECA 1/4-scale Raphael, the Gamestop-exclusive 7" 1990 movie turtles, the 1/4-scale Leonardo & Michelangelo, the 1/4-scale Donatello, and the ’80s 2-packs.

And so it just made sense to (finally) get this Alien Queen, as well!

neca_aliens_alienqueen_front

Like the other figures, this one has a window on the front for you to see (part of) the figure itself, and a nice dioramic image on the rest of the box.

neca_aliens_alienqueen_sides

One side of the box is another window to see in to the Queen, while the other side shows the typical photo/rendition of the figure…in this case, with another figure for some scale, though that figure is not actually something included in this box (and that fact is noted: "Marine Figure Sold Separately").

neca_aliens_alienqueen_back

The back of the box is the Queen herself and a brief overview of what she is.

neca_aliens_alienqueen_standing_short

The figure is very "top-heavy," and in many poses–especially at her most "natural" and menacing, she won’t stand on her own…so a base with two rods is included to allow for various poses and balancing. The TMNT Donatello figure is a standard Ninja Turtle figure for size comparison…it was what I had handy when I was taking these photos back in March!

neca_aliens_alienqueen_standing_tall

I like the Queen raised up a bit more to show her height. She TOWERS over the other figures…as she should! While the 1/4-scale TMNT figures are amazing…they’re really only "in scale" with themselves (and the baby turtles). This Alien Queen is in scale with other NECA Aliens products, so they can all stand together and look awesome in the same scale!

neca_aliens_alienqueen_aliens_shelf

neca_aliens_alienqueen_aliens_books

And here’s–as of this writing–my Aliens shelving. The Queen and other figures are on top of a bookcase, with the books on the shelves immediately below.

neca_aliens_alienqueen_aliens_graphic_novels

The Aliens/Predator comics stuff doesn’t fit the newer shelving the figures are part of, so the comics and such are still in the midst of the graphic novels collection area…which is definitely plenty appropriate!

neca_aliens_alienqueen_blogtrailer

NECA TMNT Quarter Scale: Donatello

It’s been a few weeks–maybe a month or so, now–since I got the last of the NECA TMNT quarter-scale figures I’ve been after.

I believe there’s also a Foot ninja and a Raphael-in-trenchcoat…but I’m really not interested in either of those. I prefer Raph as-is without the trenchcoat…and a lone Foot ninja makes little sense to me, and at this scale and price I’m NOT investing in 3-5+ of the things to justify the "generic minion/bad-guy" thing.

neca_donatello_front

I didn’t have the patience at the time to get a better shot of the front of the box…a bit of glare, as such.

neca_donatello_sides

The sides of the box…

neca_donatello_back

The back of the box.

neca_donatello_loose

I’d neglected at the time–due to other things going on in my private life–to get a solo shot of Donnie. Right now I don’t really have open space to properly get a good shot, so here he is towering over the Gamestop 1990 Movie Mikey and a Target 2-pack Foot ninja.

neca_tmnt_display_b

And here’s the current (at least as of this posting in early April 2019) shelf of my NECA TMNT stuff with Raph, Leo & Mikey, and of course, Donnie…as well as the Baby Turtles that I started this crazy-expensive collecting ride with.

I may still try to get the ooze cannister prop and Casey Jones mask prop…but after a number of extremely-expensive (for me) purchases across a number of paychecks, and other stuff I’m trying to get…expensive NECA stuff is on hiatus for me at the moment.

(One more expensive NECA purchase from several weeks ago yet to share, though!)

neca_tmnt_quarter_scale_donatello_blogtrailer

NECA TMNT ’80s Cartoon Two-Packs

Life’s been its own brand of crazy the last couple months. So I’m only now–a MONTH after the fact–getting around to sharing these cool purchases!

I’ve been AWARE OF the NECA brand since 2010 or 2011…whenever they did the Mirage Comics-style turtles, before the 2012 line for the Nickelodeon 2012 show was out from Playmates.

Having recently (finally) bought the Raphael and then Leo & Mikey 1/4-scale figures, these 2-packs from Target were not a terrible stretch…though it was a LOT to spend in such a short time-frame. But they served as a sort of "retail therapy" or such.

neca_target2packs

I’m not the greatest fan of the 1980s cartoon. For a time, I actually held a fair bit "against" it, though as the IDW comics have continued and have incorporated elements, stuff has been somewhat "redeemed" and I’ve come to appreciate its place in history–in general and of the TMNT property in general. And these 2-packs made for a decent "set" of figures…that’s certainly one thing about the TMNT stuff–it’s totally geared for sets of 4 with the main characters!

neca_target2packs_leoandshredder_front

Leonardo and Shredder make for a good pairing here. All the 2-packs are one turtle and one villain. So of course, matching the "leaders" up works quite well on a number of levels! 

neca_target2packs_leoandshredder_back

While the front of the boxes are showing off the figures themselves, the backs show a staged photo, a short description, as well as the other 3 boxes available for this "wave" of figures! 

neca_target2packs_donnieandkrang_front

Donatello and Krang are the "brains" of their respective groups…Krang pretty literally so. That makes these a good matchup as well. The walker contraption Krang rides in–from the earliest episodes of the ’80s cartoon–is roughly the same height as the classic Playmates figure…though Krang himself is a lot smaller here and more proportionate. 

neca_target2packs_donnieandkrang_back

Back of the box showing Donnie poised to tip Krang right on over… 

neca_target2packs_raphandfootsoldier_front

Though Raphael has come to be my favorite turtle as an adult, his 2-pack has him and "just" a Foot ninja. I’ve never been overly keen on this version of the Foot–mindless robots just seem like they shouldn’t be a threat whatsoever. And generally they were not MUCH of one, just a delaying tactic. Still, the poseability on the NECA figure(s) makes this far, FAR superior to the classic Playmates iteration! 

neca_target2packs_raphandfootsoldier_back

Cliché as it is, there IS the classic line from Raph’s first encounter with the Foot bots. "Klang?!? Did you say–‘Klang’?"

neca_target2packs_mikeyandfootsoldier_front

Michelangelo also comes with a Foot bot, that seems basically the same as the one with Raph. Though it would seem a someone generic thing to have half the packs come with these…it also actually, truly makes sense as the Foot bots ARE generic and to just have one is to defeat the point of having generic minions. And as these are a much better quality, I’m glad TO have two, although I’d have also been rather happy if these came in their own 2-pack, so that their slots could be filled with other characters!

Of course, I believe I saw stuff coming out of the one toy convention that NECA has upcoming plans for Bebop and Rocksteady. And if they come in 2-packs like these…I’d be grateful to get the pair as their own pack. But if there’s to be more hero vs villain foolery to further induce buying of multiple packs…I’d take April and Splinter with them, and/or Casey Jones! 

neca_target2packs_mikeyandfootsoldier_back

Here we have the back of the pack with Mikey gut-kicking his Foot bot.

neca_target2packs_sides_turtles

I like the sides of the packages. One side shows each of the turtles…

neca_target2packs_sides_villains

…while the other side shows the villain that turtle’s paired with!

The packs are definitely quite attractive as-is. But these being TMNT, I "couldn’t" just leave them in their boxes. So I did get them out. However, the photos of the unboxed figures will have to wait for another post!

neca_tmnt_80s_cartoon_twopacks_blogtrailer

NECA TMNT Quarter Scale: Leo & Mikey

I’m not a toy speculator. I’ve never sold toys–not for any profit, anyway–and I can only vaguely remember ebaying some Heroclix minis 15+ years ago.

But I do like collecting toys in the sense of following certain lines or getting certain sets/subsets of toys…and it REALLY bugs me when there are convention-only exclusives of figures, PERIOD–I’m more ok with certain slight variants that I don’t tend to care for, but if it’s the existence of the figure/character AT ALL, I have a problem with the exclusivity. But that gets into another topic/post entirely.

While keeping an eye on the NECA quarter-scale TMNT 1990 figures and checking options…I noticed that the cheapest price for the Michelangelo figure was some $40 more than the others, on Amazon. Since Big Bad Toy Store did me right with the Raphael figure a couple weeks earlier, I both went with them again…and went with TWO turtles this time!

neca_leoandmikey0221_leo_front

As I’d said before, Leonardo was always my favorite turtle of the four as a kid…but as an adult, I’ve found that Raphael’s tended to be my favorite moreso, including being the first turtle I went with for this line.

But Leo was not far behind, as here he is!

neca_leoandmikey0221_leo_sides

The sides of the package give some images of the figure.

neca_leoandmikey0221_leo_back

…and the back shows even more, as well as having a brief text blurb about the character/figure.

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Then there’s Michelangelo. As mentioned above, I saw this one listed on AMAZON for around $40 more than the others, but since he was the same price as the others at Big Bad Toy Store, I opted to double-up for this order and include him, to hopefully avoid overpaying for any of the four turtles!

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Here are the box sides for him…

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…and the back of the box.

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Finally, here’s the NECA shelf at present. Three quarter-scale turtles, all four 7"-scale turtles, the quarter-scale Baby Turtles, and standard-TMNT-figure size "movie star" turtles (my vintage Donatello, and 3 unofficial replicas for the other turtles).

The NECA figures are by far the superior figures, nostalgia or otherwise.

And for the sake of checking it out, I immediately swapped hands so Michelangelo has the spinning weapon variant hand/weapon that came with the Baby Turtles!

I’m leaning toward ordering Donatello on my next paycheck, though also half wondering about seeing if I can find him at a convention I’ll be going to.

Time will definitely tell!

That said…I’m missing Donatello, the Ooze Cannister replica, and the Casey Jones facemask. I’m MOST interested in these turtles themselves…and THEN there’s several two-packs apparently due to be showing up in Target any time now, that I’m very interested in.

As I said regarding these on Twitter the other day: definitely "midlife-crisis" purchasing!

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NECA TMNT 1990 Movie Turtles (Gamestop Exclusives)

Last week I posted about finally getting the NECA quarter-scale Raphael figure I’d wanted for over a year.

The day after I ordered that, I had communication from Gamestop regarding a pre-order I’d placed way back in August 2018…for 7"-scale versions of the movie turtles. I’d completely forgotten about the pre-order, that the figures were even going to exist.

And–long story short–an ordering snafu and a 70+ minute phone call to customer service and several days, and my order arrived.

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The TMNT seem to be an excellent property to me for stuff like this–one rarely would want just one turtle, as there are four primary characters…but there aren’t necessarily SO many characters that it becomes a hopeless thing. And of course, I went with all four here!

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As a kid, Leonardo was always my "favorite turtle," for his color–blue–and being the leader (which seems odd to me as an adult with little interest in leadership). In more recent years I’ve found Raphael to be a "new favorite," as also demonstrated with opting for Raph as my first of the quarter-scale turtles. 

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The back of the package has the turtle’s name and several images of the turtle, as well as a brief paragraph describing stuff, and a static image common across all four packages.

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As said, Leo was my favorite; though Raph has overtaken him, he’s my "second favorite," and it’s interesting to me to see the two characters’ interactions; especially in the 1990 film where they butt heads and Leo is so relieved to be able to apologize to Raph for saying they didn’t need him. 

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It’s interesting to me to compare the 1990 film to the comics as it drew so heavily…though as a kid, I remember being a bit surprised when I discovered that in the comics it was Leonardo who was badly beaten by the Foot, and not Raphael…though the beaten turtle being tossed through the window to April’s apartment was consistent between the iterations.

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In some ways, Mikey’s my least favorite of the turtles…as a kid, I never cared for that notion of the "party dude"–though moreso with the ’80s cartoon, it was the surfer dude aspect I never cared much for. The film version was more to my liking, and some "iconic" lines that stand out for me to this day…"Pizza Dude’s got thirty seconds!" And of course, the infamous "God, I love being a TURTLE!" 

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I also recall even as a kid noticing that in the movie, it was Splinter who had the phrase "Cowabunga!" at first, though obviously the turtles adopted it quickly as the film closed. 

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While Raph and Leo are my favorites, Donatello is one I can identify with in other ways–especially his trying to join his brothers in exclamations while not quite fitting. Bossa Nova? Chevy Nova? And of course his friendship with Casey Jones and repairing the vehicle at April’s farmhouse. 

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In retrospect I also quite appreciate this 1990 take on the character…though Donnie may be the "geek" of the bunch, I don’t care for the "stereotype" of the heavy/thick glasses that they saddled the character with for the 2014 & 2016 films. And of course, it’s those films that by comparison make these look all the better in my mind, though the nostalgia does plenty of good in that regard on its own. 

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Here’s the Raphael figure on a (sold separately) NECA action figure base. 

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Above is a look at the shell of the 7" Raphael figure. I’ve long REALLY liked the shell pattern of these movie turtles over pretty much any other iteration. And as these figures do such an excellent job of looking exactly like the film costumes, I’m quite enamored with having figures with the shell pattern duplicated, and that I can see it so clearly myself "live" and "in person" without just pausing a film on a screen or such.

I’d wondered about how similar this scale would be to the quarter-scale, and based on the "battle damage" on Raph’s shell, it seems–if not a shrunken mold, certainly an extremely detailed match, if one looks closely at the various slashes! 

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Here’s a photo of the shell from the quarter-scale figure, and to my eye, I’d say they’re identical in detail, just different in size

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Here are all four turtles out of the packaging and on NECA-brand bases. 

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And here’s a look at the quarter-scale Raph, 7" scale Raph, and a "regular size" TMNT figure for scale (a reproduction of the "Movie Star Raphael" figure). The angle partially distorts the exact scale of the figures, but I still like seeing just how massive the quarter scale figure is, and these 7" figures are also significantly taller than the old standard figures! 

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The NECA turtles get their own shelf for display for present–quarter scale Raph, 7", and "baby turtles" that I posted about a few weeks ago.  The miniature figures on a wall rack behind are Mini-Mates if I recall correctly, as well as Mega Bloks (now Mega Construx) minis.

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Finally, since I have them, I’d added the Movie Star Turtles reproductions to the shelf because why not? I don’t even need risers or such for everything to be easily seen on the shelf!


I’m NOT keen on chain-exclusive toys, and count myself extremely lucky that I happened across some announcement SOMEWHERE of these GameStop figures. The TMNT have long been–and continue to be–an exception to most of my personal "rules" and "principles" with stuff. I wasn’t about to boycott these or ignore them once I knew of them…even though I did then–with having pre-ordered–forget about them. (I was confident in the preorder and thus no reason to worry about missing them, so it was out of sight/out of mind).

At the same time, I figure at least there are a lot of GameStop locations around. I have four within a 20 minute driving radius, with two more extending to the half hour, and several more within an hour and near places I get to fairly frequently. So at least for me, the chain is actually more common and accessible to me than Walmart!

And though these are GameStop exclusive…that sure as heck beats San Diego Comic Con exclusive, or ANY convention-exclusive! I did see a YouTube video where someone compared the two versions–the SDCC from a couple years ago and these GS and there was no appreciable difference.

I’m sure QUITE happy with what I’ve got out of it, and since I want them out in the open on display and not just as toys in a package anyway, I’m actually probably "happier" with these than much rarer, MORE-exclusive, MORE EXPENSIVE versions!

Of course, issues with GameStop itself–the preorder snafu, waiting on hold from an automated system for 70 minutes to talk to my first human, the "handling" AND shipping-cost-per-item-but-all-four-came-in-a-single-box–were less than ideal. But I got these within a couple days of their official release, I didn’t have to deal with calling around or driving around to various GameStops looking for these or stewing over whether or not to trust their website’s accuracy of something being in-stock or not, etc.

And having them…it certainly desensitizes me to anyone ELSE’s plight. I have these, I’m happy with them, I’m glad I got them…and within individual reason, I definitely would recommend them as themselves (can’t blame NECA for issues with GameStop, short of the exclusivity and such to begin with).

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