Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Finally, a Star Wars wave I can get behind!

Cool, more cantina denizens!!!

Respect my Authority

I still haven't found this 3-pack yet but it really irks me that it comes with yet another Flash and Wonder Woman. How many of them do I have now, like 10 each?

Friday, September 26, 2008

Got my Castle Advent Calendar!

This wasn't intended to be sold in the US at all, which sucks when you check out the exclusive and very cool minifigs it comes with (below). But the good people at The Brothers Brick (my favorite Lego blog) and other online Lego geekoids put enough pressure on the Lego group that they sold a limited amount starting at noon EST today. I was all over it, got the special code from the blog and called their asses at 9:00 PST sharp. And it's on the way! (If you're interested, follow the link to TBB.)

Battlestar Galactica vehicles I never knew existed

Colonial Scarab

Colonial Stellar Probe

Lucifer was a silly action figure

Photos from Cooltoyreview.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Brix Blox look like something your grandmother would buy

From retrothing, I was a lucky "early adopter" of Lego. My father brought some back from a business trip when I was a boy, and that started me on a lifelong fascination with this classic construction toy. Back then Lego was expensive and hard to find, so it's only natural that giant retailer Sears would try to copy that success with Brix Blox.

To be perfectly correct, Sears didn't create Brix Blox. It's a relabeled version of "Loc Blocs" by Entex (a famous maker of handheld electronic games). Remember that Sears used to demand that anything sold in their retail chain stores be relabeled with a Sears house brand. So Brix Blox were included as part of Sears' "Little Learners" toy line.

The shape and size of the bricks is clearly patterned after Lego, though the two aren't compatible. There are also far fewer specialty shapes like windows and wheels.The pieces don't have the same precision snap fit that Lego does, so I found the models to be a bit less sturdy.

Loc Blocs were manufactured in the 70's and 80's (I even found photos of a Smurf themed set). I'm not sure when this set dates from, but perhaps since the pieces are all red, white and blue, perhaps they're from around 1976? I'm surprised that Loc Blocs existed as long as they did, given Lego's protection of their patented (since expired) construction bricks. In the 80's, Lego became somewhat more affordable and featured many more specialized and sophisticated pieces than the competition - so I guess that it wasn't enough for Loc Blocs (or Brix Blox or whatever) to merely be cheaper.

I don't see many Loc Bloc fans around today (Lego forums are notorious for their dislike of other Lego-like building toys). These days the other brands of snap-together building blocks are fully compatible with the Lego originals, so no one has to settle for an also-ran off-brand that doesn't fit anything else.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Selective Index for Jeff & Jeff's Pandemonium

Iconic images

Roundup of original Star Wars figure blister card backs

Scans of choice Sears Wish Book pages, one and two

Boba Fett's first product appearance

General Toy Coverage

Uzay! Hilarious Turkish Star Wars knockoff figs

A look at Kenner's aborted Star Wars products from the mid '80's

A Star Wars figure collector's primer

Complete stupid history of Kenner's Droid Factory/Jabba's Dungeon playset

The Hal Jordan JLU figure so ultra-rare it might as well not exist at all

Star Wars Survival Kit remembered

Super Powers figured remembered, including the unreleased 4th wave

Battle Beasts remembered

Matchboxes Mobile Action Command (M.A.C.) remembered

JPX and Octo

JPX sighted on West Coast

A young Octopunk poses in front of a tantalizing rack of POTF figures

A younger JPX and family's 15 seconds of fame

Old Star Wars figs vs. New Star Wars figs: JPX weighs in, Octopunk weighs in

JPX's favorite Super Powers figures

Octopunk's favorite Super Powers figures

Octopunk's review of toy losses, both resolved and unresolved

The story of Octopunk snagging JPX a free Blue Snaggletooth

Octopunk drools over Star Wars animated maquettes, parts one, two,
three and four.

A roundup of upcoming SW figs that leads to a long hilarious discussion on the comment board, and also...

Octopunk whined at by lousy Biker Scout figure

Much later, Octopunk admonished by Black Bespin figure

Octopunk gets excited because his toys arrive from the East Coast (including his Shadow Thunder Cab)

Octopunk gets excited because he completes a Kaiyodo Chocolasaur set

Octopunk gets excited because he decides to special order those two Astromech droid collections and then they arrive

Octopunk shows off his Astromech droid collection

Lego Stuff

Cool story about Lego pieces in special colors

Some guy online imitates one of Octopunk's Lego designs

Toy Modifications

Lushros Dofine's arm is modified

Who the hell designed this ride?

Monday, September 22, 2008

Legos finally make it to Massachusetts!

LEGO Store Grand Opening Celebration
at South Shore Plaza, Braintree, MA
October 11 - 13
Mark your calendar for the Grand Opening Celebration of the new LEGO Store at South Shore Plaza!

The highlight of the weekend is our 3-day Master Builder Event, where LEGO fans of all ages are invited to help a real LEGO Master Builder construct an 8-ft tall LEGO Yoda™ model! This event is free and fun for the whole family, and everyone who participates will get a free LEGO Star Wars Certificate of Achievement, while supplies last, plus a LEGO Store coupon!

Event Hours:
Saturday, October 11: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sunday, October 12: 11:00 am - 6:00 pm
Monday, October 13: 11:00 am - 7:00pm
Macy's Court

Plus, on Sunday October 12:
Be one of the first 300 customers to spend $35 in the LEGO Store and you'll receive an exclusive, limited-edition LEGO Baseball Player set! This set was created just for the opening of our South Shore Plaza Store, and is not available for sale! The baseball player features a red hat, red socks, white uniform and even includes home plate!

And, on Monday October 13:
Be one of the first 300 customers to spend $35 in the LEGO Store and you'll receive an exclusive, limited-edition LEGO Minifigure T-Shirt! These shirts are available in child's sizes only, and were created exclusively to mark the Grand Opening of the South Shore Plaza LEGO Store!

South Shore Plaza
250 Granite St
Braintree, MA 02184

Index! And other announcements...

1) I totally want to get my Top Ten Favorite Action Figures of All Time post done before Horrorthon starts, but my list of possibilities is huge! I may do a top ten, an 11th to 20th best, and then a bunch of honorable mentions.

2) Links! I persevered through a bit of Blogger's bitchiness and got our links sidebar back up in shape. This included a review of old posts that had some good links.

3) Index! While I was reviewing our old stuff, I came across some great posts that I thought should be revisited, and so I decided to cobble together an index in another post. When I'm done I'll put the link for the post in the sidebar, and we can add more stuff to it as we see fit.

I'm so glad we've revitalized this blog, I really enjoy it.

Tim Goddard’s Star Wars LEGO Diorama

From slashfilm, Tim Goddard’s Star Wars lego diorama “Rebel Attack” measures 30 by 50 inches (about 1:200 scale) and took almost a year to build. The diorama shows a Rebel attack on an Imperial base and mining installation.

See more here

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Which one is creepier?

If you walk past this row of dolls, you flip their motion detectors and they all start talking to you -- but because you walk past each one a fraction of a second after the last one, they sound off as eerie echoes of each other. The background noise in this video makes it difficult to hear, but I found a row of these hell children in two different Targets, so you might want to wander down the girls' aisle and check it out in person.

I took Clone Wars Yoda down from the peg to contemplate whether he was purchase-worthy, and hell NO he isn't! He's freaky looking! Nein danke.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Everything's Archie!

From plaidstallions, I never saw these Marx Archie figures as a kid or else I'd have been all over them, I've always been a big fan. These are prototypes of the actual figures as some of the head sculpts are off and they definitely didn't have articulated bodies like that, the actual product has that lame Sunshine Family style going on.

Is it me or does that Archie figure look pissed? It looks like he's ready kick somebody's ass off camera....

Thursday, September 18, 2008

I kind of like this Super Battle Droid

McDonalds Star Wars toys from Europe

From jedinews.co.uk, Well, the wait is finally over and today sees the first of the Star Wars toys that are packaged with your Happy Meal from McDonalds, although, the eagle eyed among you will notice that they are different to what we were previously aware of.

So, to clarify, the bobble head toys are only available in the US, with a smaller selection of alternative toys available for Europe. Only 8 toys are going to be released, 2 per week over the next four weeks. These toys are available over the counter for 99p if you don't want to buy food (subject to stock availability).

See the rest here

Monday, September 15, 2008

May Zack curse you and love football as well

Ben (left)

StarBird Space Avenger; toys JPX never had, but often wished for

From bugeyedmonster, In the 70’s, a lot of toy companies were incorporating electronics into their toys. While I still maintain that Rom the Space Knight is the coolest of the electronic 70’s toys, the Starbird and it’s variations are pretty close. All the Starbird toys have a few things in common; press a button and their front lasers light up and fire, tilt the ship up or down and it makes engine sounds that raise or lower in pitch, removable front assemblies, wing fighters and engine parts. These ships are often missing parts, most commonly a little gun that sits in the ball turret at the back.

There are two main modesl of Starbird, the Electronic Starbird and the Star Bird Space Avenger which was also boxed as the StarBird Avenger. Depending on the model, there are diferent sticker sets. The lasers on the Avenger’s nose are set closer together, the canopy plastic is much darker. The Avenger was a second release of the Starbird and included updated electronics that could both send and receive infrared signals. The Avenger model comes with a "target" to shoot at to test your skill with the infrared lasers.

A third vessel, the Starbird Intruder, was also made but is much harder to find. It is basically the front assembly of a Starbird with wings done up in black. It makes the same laser and engine sounds and includes the advanced infrared electronics as the Avenger. In fact, the Avenger and Intruder can have battles, knocking out the opponents ship with infrared beams like lasertag. A disabled ship’s engine will knock out briefly when hit.

Milton Bradley made a playset to go along with the Starbird line, the Command Base. It is a large cardboard station with plastic accessories like radar dishes, laser guns, a working crane, little vehicles and space men.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

1975 Toys R Us catalogue


Check out catalogue, and others, here...

...and go here if you want to get completely overwhelmed!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Hot Wheels George Barris Batmobile 1:18 Scale Replica

This is $35 at Toys R Us and I'm heavily leaning towards picking one up for my shelves.

Designer of Star Wars toys says it’s ‘fun but not all games’

PAWTUCKET, R. I. — In this not-too-distant toy galaxy, a giant yellow Naboo Starfighter hangs in Mark Boudreaux’s office, hovering over rows of Imperial Shuttles, Jedi Starfighters, Snowspeeders, and armies of miniature Storm Troopers.
“Star Wars completely surrounds you,” Boudreaux says. “It’s like... the force.” Boudreaux has been a different kind of force here at Hasbro Inc.: He’s the longest-running toy designer in the Star Wars saga — the Yoda of the toy design department. Since 1977 he has had a hand in designing and developing toys, action figures and vehicles from each of the seven Star Wars movies, including the animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

Read rest of the article here

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Alas, I think the dream of astromech completism just pulled away from me

Of course, it was always the astromech figures I liked, not a slavish desire to nail each and every one. Hence I don't even bother noting all the R2-D2 variations, and I threw this turkey above on the "ditch" pile.

However, for years those were the only exclusions, and I've built quite a helpful little army. Then last year a pack of clone troops was issued with this guy, who doesn't even get a name besides "Astro Razor." Yuck. Somehow the tossed-together color combo on this one completely turned me off. Little effort, fellas?

When the TRU exclusive Y-wing came out with this exclusive little dude, I mooned over him a number of times but was never really tempted. I'm tracking a loose one on eBay at the moment, so perhaps in this one case it's not hopeless. But I don't do the sneaky stuff anymore and buying a whole big toy like that for a droid is too much.

Then this groovy chap made the scene, but as I'm sure you know you have to build him with parts purchased separately with a bunch of other figures. As if that weren't obnoxious enough, one of them is the fat dancer from Jabba's palace. Nein danke.

Same with this guy. Great droid, I totally want him, but no way am I shelling out the dough.

And the same day I see the two assembloids above, I spot this guy in a Hoth battle pack that costs 20 bucks. If I didn't already have the white 3PO, I'd do it. And I might still do it... it's less cash than the Y-wing. But it's kind of discouraging.

Then it turns out I don't even know what discouraging is! While I'm digging up pix of the three dudes above on Rebelscum (unsuccessfully, you might notice, as they're too recent) I see a picture of this beat-up R2 unit in the site's rotating "recent pictures" sidebar display. HUH?

That leads me to the new Wal-Mart exclusive Droid Factory sets, three of which feature new astromechs, but each with some other figures I don't give two poops about. Besides Watto there are these two.

This one is particularly ugly.

And THEN, while I'm pulling pix to illustrate this particular bit of rage, the damn "recent pictures" display freakin' does it AGAIN with the droid pictured below.

It's some remote control 3 3/4" droid that came out in Japan in 2007. Mama mia!

I can't even figure out how to track this thing down from the opening Photo Archives page, so I'm linking it here to properly preserve my misery. This guy is especially handsome, so it's a bummer. Cheapest on on eBay is 22 bucks without shipping.

So yeah, think I'm gonna throw in the towel on this. I played nice, I bought my Clone Wars R2, I could still angle for the Y-wing R5, but jeepers -- seven more annoying-to-buy droids hitting me all at once like that? I know my limits.