Thursday, February 28, 2019

Marvel Legends Captain Marvel -Starforce Target Exclusive 2019

I've been waiting with great anticipation for the release of this Target exclusive Marvel Legends Starforce Edition Captain Marvel, accessories for building a Dr. Minerva included. Hasbro has really started making things fun in the last year or so, putting extra heads in with their Marvel Legends figures, enabling some kitbashing for characters they don't have room to fit into their lineup. Check out the video:

The Starforce edition Captain Marvel is a straight-up repaint of the first wave Captain Marvel just released, the Carol Danvers portrait identical. She doesn't come with outstretched flight hands like the first, but what I would have preferred are additional human gripping hands to hold the extra weapon for those of us who bought two. That said, I suppose you could customize the extra Dr. Minerva gripping hands. I absolutely love these, particularly the Dr. Minerva, whose portrait appears loosely based on actress Gemma Chan in the forthcoming Marvel film. This may be considered a miss by some action figure collectors, but she looks too cool for me care, and I love her space rifle, which she holds securely in the gripping hands included. Recommended!

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Monday, February 25, 2019

Marvel Legends Doc Ock

Real quick I wanted to mention the Doc Ock I caved and bought last weekend, having passed him by three times before taking him home. Somewhat short on villains among my Marvel Legends collection thick with Spider-Men, he made sense thematically, and should hold decent resale value. Like a lot of collectors, I somewhat regret the tentacles not being wired, but Hasbro captured the classic character representation perfectly. I've seen the wired tentacles included with the 2004 ToyBiz version plugged into this figure's back, if one was so inclined.

Doc Ock doesn't have a waist swivel, but the hinge-swivel in the upper abdomen and hip joints are  exceptional. Combined with the swivels at the boot tops and ankle rockers, he can do plenty enough to battle my All-New Amazing Spider-Man!

Below, Doc Ock with Marvel Legends All-New Amazing Spider-Man and Superior Spider-Man.
I thrilled to the story of Otto Octavius taking over Peter Parker's body to become Superior Spider-Man back in 2013! Recommended!

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Friday, February 22, 2019

Marvel Legends Dora Milaje (Black Panther Wave 2)

I had to pick up at least one of the Marvel Legends Black Panther Wave 2 Dora Milaje, mine below retail shipped, minus her M'Baku BAF piece. I'm having a hard time resisting the rest of the wave as I already have T'Chaka ,but you never know- that first wave was fantastic. The Dora Milaje is the Wakandan royal guard, this figure including three portraits for diverse army building.

Included are weapon accessories we've already seen with better paint packed with Nakia and Okoye likely compromised for the price of the three aforementioned portraits. The buck is an outright repaint of Nakia- likely a disappointment of some, but it makes sense fiscally and thematically. Don't think Hasbro would miss an opportunity to capitalize on that very specific tooling! 

All the Marvel Legends Black Panther stuff from the last year has been just outstanding. Hasbro hit a new high mark with these unique and beautiful action figures, continuing the upward trend of their Marvel Legends line. I hear a lot of complaints from the action figure community, but for a $20.00  mass-produced figure (often less if you are patient and smart), they are hard to beat. 

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Monday, February 18, 2019

Recent Reading: Captain Marvel

Marvel Superheroes #12, 1967

As we are so close to Marvel Studio's release of Captain Marvel, starring Brie Larson and Jude Law, I thought I'd put post a small tribute to one of my first comic superheroes of memory. Revisiting the Coming of Captain Marvel from Marvel Superheroes #12 was more a labor of love than literature, but still a time capsule of Marvel Comics' cosmic coming of age, setting the stage for a character with potential. Mar-Vell makes his first appearance in his green Kree soldier outfit!

Captain Marvel #29 (Nov. 1973)

While I have no surviving issues, I did recently snag a sweet Jim Starlin poster, featuring his cover art for Captain Marvel #29, from November 1973. I must have seen this drawing as a child because it's so familiar and personifies Mar-Vell in my mind. It's arguable that Starlin's run on Marv doesn't stand the test of time. Paul O' Connor from Longbox Graveyard affirmed my vague feelings after retreading the material recently, stating that while Starlin expanded the largely unexplored Marvel Universe on the pages of the book, creating lasting characters & backstory, Captain Marvel seemed flat against it. Still, he was a young, ambitious pioneer of Marvel the Cosmic, and made an impression on my Bronze-Age childhood. You can read The Life & Death of Captain Marvel (Marvel 2002) in trade paperback form, containing his complete solo title from 1972 until his death in 1982, reprinted from Marvel's first graphic novel, The Death of Captain Marvel. It left me awash in nostalgia back in 2011, but I suspect in part for how I idealized the character as a child.

Generations #1 Captain Marvel/Captain Mar-Vell (Nov. 2017)

Below, Generations #1 Ms. Marvel (Nov. 2017)
Backtracking to the end of 2017, some of the last physical comics I purchased since subscribing to Marvel Unlimited were a few of the Generations #1 issues, including Capt. Marvel/Capt. Mar-Vell. It was fun to see Mar-Vell back on the pages, though the book was criticized for it's generic writing. This is probably well-founded, and the characters seemed thrown together, the art uneven throughout, but not without some cool drawings. Another Generations book I picked up was Ms. Marvel. I wanted to get to know Carol Danvers better, taking the mantel over from a childhood hero of mine, and Kamala Khan taking over Ms. Marvel in turn. Read more about that from my Dec. 2017 post on the Marvel Legends action figures of Carol & Kamala- these aren't great comics, and were woefully overpriced, but I couldn't help but try.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Captain Marvel Pinup, 1978

As I just posted about the new Marvel Legends Captain Marvel, and we are nearing the release of the new Captain Marvel film, I thought I'd share this great Captain Marvel pinup I found on eBay recently. Featuring Captain Marvel #29 cover art by Jim Starlin (1973), the image measures 9.5 x 14". According to L.Lee Hymn of Tellshiar.Com, this pinup came from The Mighty World of Marvel Pin-up Book, published by Fireside in 1978 for $5.95 retail. On the verso of the poster is a description of Marvel team The Defenders, who would have been featured on the next page. Art by other Bronze-Age greats like John Romita, Herb Trimpe, Dave Cockrum, John Buscema, Gil Kane, Gene Colan, Jack Kirby and others were also featured. Hymn went on to tell me the book can sell for $150.-$300, individual plates going for $25.-$75. His website is a treasure trove of Marvel ephemera that is a must see! This image of Captain Marvel is an early if somewhat hazy memory from my first experiences with comic books, and a joy to frame for display in my home.

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Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Marvel Legends Captain Marvel (2019)

I didn't want to buy the whole wave of recent Captain Marvel figures, so I was glad this standard issue Captain Marvel came two per case without any BAF parts. I am on the lookout for Target's exclusive Starforce edition with parts for a Dr. Minn-Erva however, maybe two. Don't get me wrong, I like the Kree Sentry BAF from this wave, but have minimal interest in the rest of the wave. If you only buy one, get this one.

Below, the 2019 Marvel Legends Captain Marvel with my 2015 Captain Marvel. While I love the update/movie treatment, my love for the first one isn't diminished, in spite of it's simpler sculpt and deco. I've heard some gentle complaints regarding the paint apps, but this sample is passable. I mildly resent the lack of blast effects accessories, more so because there will be a forth Carol Danvers/Capt. Marvel figure that will include them. Just sell us accessories packs, Hasbro -you're dropping the ball. Nerds would pay handsomely for these as an online exclusive. Big Bad Toy Store?

The Brie Larson head sculpt on the movie figure certainly has added nuance, but the 2015 comic version was fine for what it was- I prefer the darker blue. I think by and large, the Marvel Legends community is happy with the new face-print technology Hasbro has been employing, but mine will be displayed in her mohawk helmet...

The Marvel Legends Black Panther Wave Nakia and Okoye are in a lot of my comparison photos, especially any female Marvel Legends group shots, because they are so great. And you will see them again. Also pictured below is Thor Ragnarok Valkyrie, another powerful female warrior...

And this post pretty much has to feature a smackdown with my Infinity War Wave Thanos BAF, because this is what we are hoping for in the forthcoming Avengers: Endgame. I love all the Marvel Cosmic characters being produced in the Legends line, thanks to Guardians of the Galaxy, Infinity War, and Captain Marvel movies. What a great time to be a Marvel fan!

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Saturday, February 2, 2019

Batman Returns Vinyl (Applause, 1992)

I had been wanting a larger scale Tim Burton/Michael Keaton Batman for awhile, but didn't want to shell out too much. I remember and still happen upon some of the older Hamilton vinyls of Batman and Robin in their Bronze-Age outfits, so I went that route hunting down this 10.5" Batman Returns vinyl. You can get one pretty cheap on eBay if you're patient. While articulation is limited to swivels in the shoulders and waist, the sculpted details are surprisingly accurate, and his leathery, scalloped cape is pretty nice. He's a beautiful figure! Check out the video:

My framed Batman Returns poster has been featured on this blog- it's nice to have another piece of official merchandise from that era. The Tim Burton Batman movies are still my favorite, Batman Returns on the top of my list. It was a special time for me, during what was a renaissance in Batman's popularity and influence on popular culture, and like a lot of other teenagers, I was consumed by the ensuing licensing onslaught like no other of that time. Legendary!

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