Category Archives: Movies

Thor and Valkyrie 2-Pack – Marvel Legends – Thor: Ragnarok

Target has been getting a bunch of 2-Packs for the Marvel movies, and they are holding onto them for a LONG time. I am hoping that they or Hasbro will figure out that they are not holding onto the 2-packs for so long because people don’t want 2-packs, but instead that they are generally one new figure, and a slightly retooled figure from a line that just came out. In this case, it is the Thor Valkyrie 2-Pack. Valkyrie is new, but Thor is nearly identical to the one that came out in the Hulk Wave to celebrate Ragnarok.

From Hulk BAF wave

I skipped this 2-pack for as long as I can, but Target put it on sale for $20.99. That is nearly a 2 for 1 sale. Now I am interested. So I grabbed it up and here we go. 2 more figures for the Thor: Ragnarok series.

They come with a good number of accessories. Thor comes with a second set of hands, so he has 2 open and two grasping hands. He also comes with the sword of Heimdall called Hofund, and rubbery electricity for his arm/hand. Valkyrie comes with a little less, the Dragonfang sword and scabbard.

They look good side by side. They are decked out in their gladiator armor. Thor looks as he does toward the end of the movie, where he is missing the shin armor he had during his battle with Hulk. Valkyrie is decked out in her clothing from earlier in the movie. By the end of the movie, she was once again in her white armor.

With the two different hands, Thor is a pretty dynamic character. He can hold stuff in both hands, and he can look like he is grabbing toward something, or use that electricity. It is a very rubbery material that wraps around his arm and hand. It is actually a flat piece that curls up, so it can be easily wrapped around any part you want. The likeness of the helmetless head is really well done. He looks really good.

I am not sure why Thor came with Hofund. It is Heimdall’s sword, but nonetheless, Thor gets paired up with it. It makes me wonder if they were originally going to make a Heimdall figure, but went with a second Thor instead. I guess they didn’t just want to include the green swords we got with the first figure.

Valkyrie looks really good. His has a nice resemblance to Tessa Thompson. Her outfit has some good detail overall. I am still waiting for Hasbro to get on with it and finally give us some women with double articulation in their elbows. We are still so limited with the 90 degree bend we get right now. She comes with Dragonfang and a scabbard for the sword. It matches in color and design to Thor’s twin blades he got with the first figure. The scabbard is fairly useless. It does not attach to her back as it should. Where is the peg?

These two look really good together. They match in their style really well, from the design to the colors they wear. I like the design choice in the movie to give them less capes and more of just a fabric drape.

I do not think this is a set worth the original $39.99, or the lowerered price $34.99, since we only get one new figure. Drop that down to $20.99, and you have a deal. I will take a helmetless Thor as a freebee to go along with Valkyrie. I think they should have just has Valkyrie in the mainline in the first place. They certainly had enough characters they could have had a whole wave of movie figures. I don’t know why they still run half movie, half comics in each wave. I have seen the Infinity Wars preview pictures, and it continues. With 60+ main characters, and they can’t just give us all movie figures. Ah well, I am not in charge, but I will wait for them to make the same deal with the Star-Lord/Ego pack. I am not going to pay $34.99 for my third movie Star-Lord, when they did it right the first time.

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Nitro Zeus (Decepticon Nitro) – Transformers: The Last Knight (Voyager Class)

I was playing Russian Roulette today to take an unopened figure outside for a sunny day review. Nitro Zeus was my guy. I have been REALLY slow to review figure from The Last Knight mostly because I really didn’t like the film all that much. There were some parts that were good, and there are some figures that are great. So I have a smattering of figures that I have picked up early on when they were first released around movie time.

Straight out of the box, I like Nitro. He is a good feeling figure. He feels like a solid toy with good strong body parts. He has a wobbly head going on, but more on that in a bit. This is a pretty close representation of the figure. He is missing a lot of paint detail that he had in the movie, and he does not have the ammo belt tube similar to the one Shockwave had. Ironically, Nitro had a similar head to Shockwave in the movie too.Nitro is made for fighting.

He has a crossbow on one arm that sticks out further than his hand. Picking up stuff must be hard. He also has six missiles mounted to his back. There are two mini gatling guns, one on each shoulder.

Finally, on his left arm, he has a bigger gun. It looks like a mix between a big cannon and a gatling gun. We see it was toward the end of the movie, with Nitro using his crossbow for most of the fights.  The cannon telescopes in on itself to become a little more than half the length, but at least he can pick up stuff with this hand.

The wobbly head. That is due to Nitro’s head being removable. Hasbro utilized the Titan Master head port to allow for a change. Apparently Cogman (who has a Headmaster), ripped off Nitro’s head in an early version of the movie. We did not get to see that, but the head function stuck. So, Nitro makes a nice crossover between the movie line and the Generations line, to be able to accept a Titan Master.

The transformation is HAAAARD!!!! But boy is it fun to try and figure out. There is some AMAZING engineering in this one. Don’t lose the directions. This one is not straightforward.

It is a very interesting change in jets for this figure. In the movie, he turned into a Saab JAS 39 Gripen. They ended up with a generic jet. That is not to say this is not a good jet. It is actually a really well done jet. The body parts of Nitro hide well underneath, with so much engineering going into the transformation, that you will have trouble recognizing the body parts when you look at the bottom of the jet.  One strange thing about this guy is that he has engines on his back in robot mode, but they do not go with him into jet mode. The engines unfold to becomes his wings, and the top of the jets that stick up over his back, become greeble under the wings. The whole time I was transforming him, I was trying to figure out how the engines were going to fit into all of this. Tricky, they weren’t.

The missiles make an appearance again, this time helping to cover the body parts. It is well thought out.

Nitro gets another bonus, a usable cockpit. The canopy opens and allows a Titan Master to fit inside. Fun!

Overall, I really like Nitro. He is a good figure, and a departure from the mediocre movie figures. A lot of the time, in the movies, they make the transformations so extreme that there is no possible way to get “that robot” transformed into a vehicle. You either get a bad robot, a bad vehicle, or both. Thankfully Nitro does not fit into that category. He is a good, solid robot, and a really well done jet.


Black Panther – Marvel Minimates (Toys R Us and Walgreens Exclusives)

We are getting ever closer to the next Marvel movie – Black Panther. We know from the previews of Avengers: Infinity War, that the warriors of Wakanda play a pretty major role in battling the evil that comes our way. The figures are out for Marvel Legends, and Minimates. I was able to grab all 5 sets in one afternoon, stopping at Toys R Us and then Walgreens on my way home from work a few weeks back. There are only the five sets between the two stores. Comic stores only got the 4 pack this time around. Really good for those of us who do not have a comic store nearby that will stock the 2-packs. It is really hard to get that one last 2-pack that is an exclusive to the comic shops a lot of the time. Not this time around. For those keeping track the four figures in the box set are:
Black Panther
Powered Up Killmonger
M’Baku
Shuri
So, we have 2 of the figures, Black Panther and M’Baku in these 2-packs. But Shuri and Powered Up Killmonger may just be a pair that will require getting this set as well.

Here we go. We will start with the 2 sets that are at both stores, and then look at the exclusives.

 

First up is Black Panther and M’Baku.

The first pack better have the star of our movie in there. And it does. This is a new armor, or Habit for T’Challa. He comes with M’Baku, who in the comics, wanted to take over Wakanda. So, we will see what comes of this guy in the movie.

M’Baku comes with a long staff. It has a big knot at the end. I am sure he goes around knocking people over the head with it. Black Panther on the other hand, does not use any weapons, so his only accessory is T’Challa’s hair.

The paint apps on BP are really well done. The suit is a really dark grey, and then there are black and silver apps, plus white eyes added.

 

Killmonger and Ulysses Klaue:

Well, isn’t this a pair. This is a set of bad guys to be sure. Killmonger looks like he wants to be Black Panther. Erik Killmonger’s family was kicked out of Wakanda. Erik will come back to exact revenge on T’Challa. As for Klaue, we know him from Avengers: Age of Ultron. Last time we saw him, he was selling missiles to someone before Ultron showed up to make a deal with him for Vibranium. When Klaue started to mouth off, Ultron cut off his arm. It seemed to be an accident, as Ultron could not grasp the idea of how fragile the human body really is.

Since he had Vibranium (same stuff as Captain America’s shield), and the only place on earth to get it is in Wakanda, there was a strong tie of Klaue to Black Panther even before Black Panther showed up in Civil War. Since Klaue lost his arm, it looks as though he got an upgrade of sorts. His prosthetic arm separates into two parts to allow a weapon (sonic device) to be used. This is in connection to the comic Klaw who has a sonic weapon for a hand.

Killmonger comes with a hair piece. This is a great hair piece unlike anything I have seen in the Minimates lines before. Klaue comes with a second arm where the prosthetic is in the closed position with lines that show where it could open.

 

Dora Milaje Nakia and Okoye (TRU EXC):

The Dora Milaje are the bodyguards of the King of Wakanda, and potential wives of the ruler. Nakia comes with a pair of ring blades. She is a spy for Wakanda and travels the world. Okoye is the leader of the Dora Milaje. She come with a spear that is said to be nearly as sharp as her tongue.

So with that, we have 2 of the members of the Dora Milaje. We did not get Ayo, who talked to Black Widow in Civil War and said, “Move or you will be moved.” A tough lady for sure. Hopefully we will get some more Dora Milaje later on, maybe in a Infinity Wars pack or something.

 

Tactical Killmonger and Casino T’Challa (Walgreens EXC):

I don’t know what is going on with Killmonger’s outfit at this point, but I cannot wait to see what transpires to have a guy in tactical military clothes with a crazy looking mask, and two swords. Killmonger also comes with a hair piece. More on the face in a bit. In the meantime, T’Challa is looking sharp in a printed suit coat.

 

Everett Ross and Powered Up Black Panther (Walgreens EXC):

Everett Ross was introduced to us in Civil War, like Black Panther. Martin Freeman was quoted as saying about Ross, “you don’t know whether he’s good or bad, so you’re not quite sure which side he’s on. It looks a little bit like he’s playing one game when actually he’s playing another.” It will be interesting to see what role he plays in the movie. Maybe he is still hunting for Bucky, who happens to be sleeping in a cryotube in Wakanda. He comes with Powered Up Black Panther. We have a regular Black Panther, and now he gets Powered Up. He was a lot for Cap and Bucky to deal with when he didn’t have extra abilities. He is going to be a handful for the bad guys when he gets mad.

There are the three faces of T’Challa. I am really glad they didn’t just give us three of the same heads. The Black Panther head looks placid, while Powered Up looks mad. Casino T’Challa is somewhere in the middle.

And since we are looking at 3 T’Challas, we should look at the 2 Erik Killmonger heads. Unhappy and “What are you talking about.”

This is a great set of figures. There is a nice wide range. A couple of bodyguards to go along with all of the Panthers. A lot of bad guys to play with too. And I will reserve judgement of Ross for which side he is really on.


Marvel Legends – Mantis Series (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2)

We are back in Marvel Legends with another go around from the Guardians of the Galaxy. This time to go along with Volume 2.  In the standard that we are currently seeing from Habro, we have a number of movie figures and a string of comic figures to go with the theme.

Rocket and Groot:

One of the best pairing from the first movie again makes waves as we look at Rocket in a new costume, and a young Groot.

This version of Rocket still looks like he has a bad attitude. This is helped with a hinged jaw and two guns that fit well in his hand.  Rocket is not a big figure, but the details are outstanding on his outfit. And little Groot looks great too. Maybe we will see a teenage Groot in Infinity Wars. Fingers crossed for an emo Groot.

Gamora:

Gamora is not a big win for me. I did not love the first version, and the second version does not bring me much joy either. I think it is because I LOVE the design of the comic version of Gamora, and it is hard to make a live-action related to that.

The face sculpt is really well done. Hasbro has been nailing the face sculpts for the most part.

Along with a large rifle, Gamora also comes with her sword, as well as a second version of her sword that folds up and fits in a holster/sheath.

Nebula:

I was so happy to see Nebula make it back into Volume 2. I thought there was a lot of depth to the character that we had not yet seen… and we didn’t get a figure the first time around either.

Her outfit is really cool looking with the two tones of purple, with the black and some shiny and some matte. There is a lot of detail going on there. It goes along with the rest of her body, a great head sculpt and a fantastic metal arm.

She comes with a small blaster, and a second arm. That replacement forearm is a bit creepy, and it looks great.

Star-Lord:

Oh good, just what we need… another Star-Lord. How many is that now? This time we have Dr. Who Star-Lord. I am not a big fan of the face sculpt on this one. We have gotten a few really good versions in the past.

We don’t get a masked head, but boy, we get a scrap of black plastic. Hmmm. Kind of a letdown this time around.

Star-Lord also comes with his twin blasters, but boy this is a hard one for me to like, since we have had a few good ones in the past.

Adam Warlock:

Adam Warlock is the first of the comic figures. They gave us a painted buck with a skirt and fat belt, power effects, and a pair of heads. This is not a terribly exciting figure.

The alternate head is actually quite amazing. It adds to the dynamics of the figure and makes him way better. And the purple skin is really well done.

Ex Nihilo:

Ex, who now? I have no clue who this guy is. And I don’t really care all that much. In the past, there have been strange out-there figures that have come around in the later part of the Marvel Legends waves that I really wanted to know more about.

This guy, not so much. He is gold and has a black symbol on his chest. And he has some crazy asymmetrical horns. That is about all I need to know.

I do actually love the gold paint. It really shows off the great sculpting of the figure.

Mantis (BAF):

Take the build-a-figure part from each of the figures and you end up with Mantis. Easily one of my favorite parts of Volume 2.

She looks fantastic in her black and green. The colors of her outfit are really well done. She has her movie accurate hair and the big black eyes.

It is hard to say it is worth it to have to get 6 figures, just to build Mantis. She is great, but she is also a small figure. We had Hit Monkey back in the day that was a small guy, but there were only 3 figures to collect in that wave. This one you had to collect 6 of the 7 figures to get this BAF. I skipped Death’s Head II. I will probably pick him up on clearance on Amazon.
He looks a lot better than Ex Nihilo. And it was a redo of Rocket, Gamora, Star-Lord, and a couple of unknowns. So, I am not impressed overall. And that is hard for me to say, I LOVE Marvel Legends. Thankfully, there are some really good waves coming up in the very near future.


Black Widow – Marvel Ultimate Series (Disney Store Exclusive)

I don’t play around in the 12 inch scale a whole lot. The good figures tend to be really expensive, so I shy away from them for the most part. But when something like Black Widow goes on a deep sale at The Disney Store, I jump all over that kind of deal.

She is pretty much all I have seen that is left from the Ultimate Series of figures. I don’t know a lot about her, but overall I am pleased with her.

She comes in a cloth outfit that has a zipper in the front. She comes with a set of stun batons that are nicely colored. She also comes with 3 guns (2 handguns and a rifle). There is also an alternate set of hands.

The outfit looks nice. It fits well and has a really good looking material. The holsters do not stay in place when playing with her, and moving her around for posing.

She has a pair of gauntlets that we have seen her use before to shock an assailant. Unfortunately, the bracelets have blue electricity shooting out of them, and it does not look very good when she is holding her guns or just standing there. I might have to cut off the electricity.

She has really good range of motion with good articulation, and fabric that lets that articulation work. If you have a pose you want her in, she can probably make it.

I am a bit skeptical about her being a $34.95 action figure. She is nice, but I have trouble thinking she is $35 nice. There are a lot of really good quality accessories and the body is well done. I got her for $20, and I think that is a GREAT deal for this figure. I checked the DisneyStore.com website, and now they are going for $14.99. A steal.

If you are a fan of Black Widow, or want a good set of clothes and guns, you might want to head over to your local Disney Store or get online and pick her up.


Marvel Legends – Thor Ragnarok Series (Gladiator Hulk Series)

This Marvel Legends series based around Thor: Ragnarok is a lot of fun. 3 of the figures are from Thor: Ragnarok, and 3 are from the comics, with the Build-a-Figure breaking the tie in the movie’s direction. Let’s get started.

Movie:

Up first is of course Gladiator Thor. He comes dressed in his new garb from the movie. The paint is really well done with a lot of great colors. I really like the asymmetrical look of the outfit, shoulder armor on his left side, and shin armor on his right.

Even his tunic is well done. It is supposed to be reminiscent of his cape, but not really that useful in a gladiator battle.

He comes with the two swords he ran around with. They have a great looking blue color with gold hilts.

 

Loki:

Next we get Thor’s brother, Loki. Compared with the other figures, I find him to be lacking quite a bit. I like the face sculpt okay, but we have seen better.

He should have come with a pair of knives, but alas, he doesn’t. His outfit is a bit on the drab side. Too subdued for the likes of Loki.

 

Hela:

The third figure for the wave is Hela. I loved her in the movie. She was such a good badguy. So we get her wearing her amazing headgear. It is so intricate, with all of the horns. The rest of her outfit carries along with that theme, carrying the interwoven look all the way down her arms and legs.

Along with a pretty nasty looking sword, Hela also comes with an alternate head. It is a very good likeness of Cate Blanchett. She was a great choice for the role.

The first three figures in this wave are well done. Thor and Hela stand out against Loki, but he is a decent figure. There is one more to go that we will look at as we get to the end of the series.

Comics:

Jane Foster:

The first of the comic figures is Jane Foster Thor. She goes along quite well with the A-Force team of women that came out earlier this year. She has more of a classic look to her, with a lot of leather and a pounded-metal helmet and armor. I am very happy with the overall design.

Odinson:

Odinson is a bit of a letdown in this series for me. He seems like a redundant figure to add in to the wave. I do see the relevance as Odinson lost the ability to control Mjolnir, and later took up his Jarnbjorn ax to continue to fight. This is somewhat mirrored in the events of Ragnarok. The outfit is simple, with very little detail added. I am not sure anyone would scream from Asgard that this is their favorite figure in the series.

Ares:

Ares. Oh, boy. Now this is a figure. He is BIG. Standing upright, he is nearly a head taller than Odinson. He is really standing out as a great figure. From the skull on his chest to the great looking armor.

And on top of everything else, he is equipped with the most accessories of anyone. He comes with a double-axe, broadsword, and a removable helmet. And in the case of all of that failing him, he also has a knife. Well done indeed.

Again it is 2 for 3 with the wins. Ares is the best of the wave for the regular figures, and Jane foster is pretty good too. Odinson is a bit lacking.

Build-a-Figure:

Gladiator Hulk:

Collect all of the figures and you can build yourself a giant Gladiator Hulk. He comes with a removable helmet, an axe, a hammer, and shoulder armor.

He looks absolutely fantastic. The details are as good as we have ever seen. The paint is really well done, with some great detailing on the outfit.

Comparing him to Thor, he is a great size. I am sure it was quite a feat to get him to fit in the boxes with the other figures. And the accessories really add a lot.

This is a great series of figures, with only a few figures that don’t make the cut. Hasbro cannot hit it 100% of the time, but 71% is not too bad. We will see what we get in the second round of figures that are expected around the movie.


First Order Stormtrooper Executioner – Star Wars The Black Series (The Last Jedi) – Target Exclusive

The Executioner Stormtrooper sounds like he is going to be a bad dude. From the description on the back of the packaging, it sounds like this is the Internal Affairs division of the Stormtroopers, but with this guy being the judge, jury, and executioner. This does not bode well for the Stormtroopers that cannot stay in line.

 

This Target Exclusive figure is a repaint of a standard First Order Stormtrooper. There is a matte black stripe on the helmet, and black shoulder pads. From there, he is given a special axe with which to dispense justice for the First Order.

The standard Stormtrooper came with two guns. This guy has the leg port of the smaller blaster, but was not included. That is too bad. I would think he would carry one even though he has a special weapon as well.

The black color added here and there gives quite a different look to the trooper.

Side by side, it is clear that these two are one in the same. They may be different branches of the same military, but it would be expected that an Executioner would run around in nearly the same armor as the standard infantry.

Other than the few paint apps, there are no differences between the two sets of armor.

One interesting note is the one black sole and one white sole on the boots. That is a funny thing to include, but the black sole is on the same side of the body as the black marking on the helmet.

Together to take back the galaxy. That is a lot of white and black going on here. The other four better worry, because while they are looking at the enemy, the Executioner is looking at them.


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