Whatever's cool with me...

Whatever's cool with me...

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Pop Culture League Challenge: Are You Scared?

To the question posed by Commander Brian from Cool and Collected ....I'd say that YES I am constantly scared.

Being scared is a normal feeling for us homo sapiens and I can't fathom anybody without any fear whatsoever. Unless you're a demi god or something.

As clichè as these may sound (and I do believe many would share the same) these are:

1 - Heights.....you can discount me from being involved in any wall-scaling/ledge-standing superhero action...

2- The deep sea/lake/rivers - Dark, mysterious and murky waters creeps the heck outta me....

Now how about a bad case of irrational fear? Just to add to the above, I also subconciously have trypophobia because thinking about a cluster of small holes makes me have severe goosebumps and the hair at the back of my neck to stand up. Not gonna deliberate any further on this because merely thinking about it....ya' know...

Check out what the rest of the league members are saying HERE.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Pop Culture League Challenge: Zombies!

This week the League is calling for a write-up on a topic which is rather synonym to the very core of my existence in the pop culture realm. So let’s see what I can come up with when I talk about….. 

The dead have arisen…

I’ve actually posted a bit about zombies in one of my previous Pop Culture League (PCL) essays (was it the last one? In the Here There Be Monsters article I think?) but I’ll talk about them again here albeit a bit more elaborate to fulfill this week’s challenge. 

So how should I say this? Zombies or walkers or lurkers or the undead or whatever you may want to call them has always been my fascination. Deep down inside I get this tiny feeling that most of us secretly want a zombie apocalypse to happen so that we could quickly go down to our DIY stores and finally pick those machetes, spades or crowbars up as defence (or offence?!) against the undead. 

The irony is that I am a person who firmly believes that I should not pay for something that’ll scare the crap out of me. I generally dislike watching horror movies although there are several exceptions to the rule and one of them are zombie movies. 

Having said all of those, my infatuation with zombies is not merely confined to movies and TV series but for print materials as well. 

Let us now go through the many zombie-rific stuff that rocked my world: 

1 – George Romero’s movies – I literally grew up with Romero’s movies. As a kid in the 80s who spent his afternoons re-watching Romero’s marvelous films over and over again (after I was done with homework of course!) I began to develop that somewhat sadistic appreciation towards the art of brain bashing. The special effects were very minimal of course at the time and heavy usage of CGIs were virtually non-existent….and I loved it! But Romero’s movies (like any other great movies of our time) were not merely an outlet for displaying his mastery of gore but they were also instrumental in educating us kids that disaster/apocalypse brings out either the best or the worse in human behavior. Yup, they were deep in meaning but we were too young to understand it. 

2 – Other B-grade zombie flicks – Don’t underestimate the power of B-grade/low-budget/indie zombie flicks for they sometime contain fresh plots that we’ve never seen in the big budgeted mainstream zombie films. While most mainstream films offer a somewhat similar premise i.e. outbreak-humans get infected-a group of survivors-yadayadayada….. these small budget movies can sometime spring few surprises in the plot department. I’m not gonna go very detail and name many here because there are simply too many to begin with (a trip with uncle Google with give you a busload of recommendations). But if I have to name a couple then I’d say check out Peter Jackson’s cult classic “Dead Alive” and 2007’s “Rec”…..and please don’t get me started with Warm Bodies…hahah. 

3 – Zombie comedy – Ok, I’m not gonna lie here but I think I’ve only seen just few movies that fits the bill in this category and that’s Shaun of The Dead. When it comes to great modern British comedy, nobody does it better than Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. So when Pegg and Frost decided to dip their hands into the zombie genre you can be sure that all hell will break loose! Quirky Brit funny dialogues coupled with Pegg and gang’s humor, the movie is actually movie #1 in a series of British comedic genre films dubbed the Cornetto Trilogy. Zombieland on the other hand tells you about a group of random survivors from the American point of view. How about Woody Harrelson-Jesse Eisenberg-Emma Stone –Bill Murray(?) in the same movie? The result is hilarious. 

A thought to ponder…..now could Evil Dead possibly be in the comedy genre? 

3 – Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead comics – I must admit that I was rather skeptical when I first read Robert Kirkman’s TWD comic (I got myself the thick compendium trade paperback since I’ve missed the boat to collect from issue #1) simply because it was black and white. But once I started to flip through the first few pages I was hooked. Hooked I tell ya! This is a modern zombie tale but you kinda get that old school vibe in the absence of colored pages. Finally a zombie comic book that is both continuous and never ending in nature. What more could you ask for really? 

4 – AMC’s The Walking Dead TV series (Season 7 coming up real fast later this month. Woohoo!) – If you have no clue whatsoever of this TV series then I shall assume that you’d probably spent the last 6 years or so living in a cave with no contact with the outside world. This award-winning series is now heading towards its 7th season and you need not be a fan of Kirkman’s comics to enjoy it. Zombie-bashing action at its very best on a weekly basis makes fan boys scream in delight. Even so many fans are crying foul that the TV series do not follow the stuff that has happened in the comic pages frame by frame. Now where’s the fun in that? 

5 – Zombie action figures 

i.        McFarlane Toys TWD TV series action figures – I’ve been religiously trying to complete my TV series action figure line up since it was first released many years ago (remember that weird contorted Daryl Dixon figure from wave 1?). I’m a bit gutted now that McFarlane Toys decided to ditch their 5” line and concentrate on ‘staction’ like 7” figures. There are many more characters yet to be done for the 5” line and their decision to pull the hand brake couldn’t have come at a more worse time since the Negan story arc is coming up next in Season 7. Anyway, I think I have more human characters than the walkers themselves…..shouldn’t I be having more walkers/zombies action figures since they are the focal point of the whole premise, right? 

Just survive....somehow #amcthewalkingdead #amc #thewalkingdead #mcfarlanetoys #actionfigurephotography

ii.         Random zombie toys - These are my two favorite non TWD zombie collectibles: 

EMCE Toys: Zombies vs Zombie Hunters

Zombie Viper

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Who's brains is about to be busted open you say?

Are....you.....ready?!!!! Oct 24 couldn't come any sooner...... #amc #thewalkingdead #tvseries #robertkirkman #season7 #october2016 #empiretvmagazine

Come on. Admit it. The suspense is killin ya'. As much as I do not want to Abraham or Daryl's brains to split open by Ms Lucille, there is every chance that even the main core 'fan favorite' characters could bite the dust. On the hindsight, I do not think that the ever-annoying Rick Grimes would be a candidate for Negan's brutality (at least not yet).

We're about a good 2 weeks before the reveal folks. Feels like a lifetime. Darn. 

Guest writer: Aidil from Down Under....

Some time back I did mention that someday I'd be having guest writers contributing to the blog. If you were a long time reader of my blog then there's a chance that you'd remember that I used to have a contributor some years ago but he turned out out to be a major douchebag and I've have since removed all traces of his existence in The Rebel Page. Last I heard he kinda died or currently live in the gutters in the streets or something like that. Whatever. Good riddance.

Anyway. I digress.

I've dabbled with many ideas on what to call this initiative. One was to call it 'Rebel Legion of Writers' and the other was simply 'Rebel Writers'. Whatever. I'm good with just calling it 'Guest Writers' because I do not want to spend so much time thinking about names.

We start off the initiative by posting an article written by a fellow toy collector and a very good friend of mine, Aidil, who currently resides in Western Australia. This is a nice introductory article about the man and his passion for action figures and photography.

Take it away Aidil.....


Hello from Down Under…

Recently, I have been invited to be a guest writer for the Rebel Page. I hesitated at first, primarily being that I am not a fan of writing ever since my school days. I guess I am more of a “photo speaks louder than text” kinda guy, but after  a few persuasive words from The Rebel himself, I decided to give it a try.

Coincidentally the owner of the blog is my schoolmate and a long time friend. Funny thing, I came across this blog by accident. I was googling the net for toy review blogs and I found this one interesting blog and decided to browse through. I read the blogger’s profile and I started feeling suspicious so I immediately text my friend asking if the blog was his and..I was right! Since then, I have been following his blog.

At that time, I was just beginning to venture into the world of toy collecting. So obviously I did a lot of research about this hobby. From the terms commonly used like MISB, BIB, Loosed, the different scales and of course the toy trading realm. My decision to be involved in this particular hobby has not been started by myself, but it came from the motivation of having my first son after having three beautiful princesses. Well, can you blame me for being excited. Not that I don’t share my childhood with my daughters, (my first is a huge Star Wars fan), but its just not the same.

So when God finally answered my prayer, I get all pumped up to finally being able to buy all those boys toys. These includes of course, action figures! Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy browsing and buying toys with my daughters, you know all the Barbie, My Little Pony, Shopkins stuff and occasionally anything Star Wars. But finally being able to venture into the world of Marvel, DC, Transformers etc really excites me.

So one fine day I decided to buy my son a few action figures as he was getting interested in those. After breezing through two local malls, I finally got him a 6 inch Marvel Legends Captain America and, of course, a Revoltech Iron Man Mark 7. Mind you, at that time I am still naive about all these different brands for action figures. So after getting home, I decided to have a look at them closer aaannd you know what happened next. I started saying to myself, wait a minute, these aren’t your 3 to 4 year old toys, even though the box said it so.

From there I started getting this feeling that I have not felt siiincee…so I decided to keep them for myself instead..hahaha (sue me for this). Don’t worry, I finally got my son a complete set of 3.75 inch Marvel Legends Movie Avengers action figures to compensate my decision.

Its been almost 2 years now since that fateful day and my collection has grown slowly and steadily. Well I only collect figures that I love or I found interesting (Until now I have never bought a complete wave set). Not only my collection has grown but also my love for toy photography and recently the world of diorama. You can follow my Instagram account @aidilnorhobby, while waiting for my next article (God knows when..hahaha)

So there you go, I guess I get to be a child again with these three dudes. You must be thinking, who is the third? My beloved son of course!

I hope this first simple introductory article of mine is worth your reading time especially along side those great articles by The Rebel.

Until then, Cheers!

Perth WA.
So that's it folks from our Guest Writer this week. Be sure to check out his Instagram page for more action figure photography from the man himself.


Thursday, October 6, 2016

Pop Culture League Challenge: Here There Be Monsters!

Whoah, the Pop Culture League (PCL) is churning out super fun essay challenges these days that I’ve only since missed one assignment thus far since it was re-launched (yea I know….shame on me).  So here comes this week’s essay challenge/assignment:

Here There Be Monsters!

So what exactly do I talk about when there are virtually endless possibilities of stuff that I can blabber about just by imagining the word “monster” in my head?

I think to be on the safe side and to make my thought process more systematic I’d want to list down the stuff that had immediately popped up in my mind seconds after reading this week’s PCL Challenge in numerical points below. I grew up with most of the stuff you’re about to read about, so chances are some of these might be your cup of tea too:

One - TV show on “monsters”
I can’t bring myself to think about any other fitting TV shows other than The Munsters. I’m not just talking about the classic 60s version but also the 80s reboot as well. It was pure straight-to-your-face funny and quirky, full of colorful characters AND the language was safe for kids as well. I miss Herman and family dishing out against each other and their nosy neighbor. Hey, isn’t the premise the same for the Addams’ Family too? I guess that one works for me as well.

NECA 24" head-to-tail Electronic Godzilla

Two – Godzilla @ Gojira
Come on, ya’ can’t really talk about monster without mentioning the “King” now, right? Fittingly, I have also recently watched the recent Shin Godzilla movie the other day and I can tell you that the franchise is still as strong as it was when it first exploded into the pop culture scene many decades ago. I was also an ardent fan of the Ultraman (men) of the 80s, with Ultraman Jack being my favorite. Well, it looks like that by this point I have established that I have a thing for ‘kaiju’. What’s not to like about giant (mutated or genetically-produced) monsters? Sure, they destroy cities and civilizations but most of the time they were also responsible for bringing out the best in humanity in times of crisis, didn’t they?

Riot Gear & Gas Mask zombies
EMCE Toys: Zombies vs Zombie Hunters

Three – Brain eating zombies
My infatuation with zombies knows no boundary. I’ve literally watched George Romero’s flicks endless times (my favorite is the ‘original’ Dawn of the Dead movie from 1978….not the 2004 Zack Snyder remake) while continuously looking for more indie/B-grade zombie movies to watch to satiate my hunger for zombie-related gore. I also dig Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead comics as well as AMC’s TV series (I’m rooting for Eugene to be beaten to pulp by Negan come Oct 23!). I am also an ardent fan of David Moody’s Autumn series, although I think less kindly about his Hater books.

Four – Nessie
For all the naysayers and non-believers of the creature that is said to be lurking in the murky depths of Loch Ness, I only one thing to say to youse….too bad. Ain’t my fault that you don’t believe in something so mysterious and interesting. Ain’t my fault too that you rest your fate completely within the confines of ‘logical thinking’ without any faith and gut feeling to go along with it. I must have read tones of books about cryptids and other unexplained stuff since my late dad first introduced me to them back then. I believe that Nessie together with a number of other cryptids exists. They’re just waiting to be discovered. But until then…..

Read what the rest of the Pop Culture League members have to say about this week’s topic:

Green Plastic Squirtgun showcased his superb collection of monsters....
Alexis' Universe talks about his favorite Halloween decos.....
Mr Smith said that 'monster is a CHOICE and not an appearance'....great one.....
20 Years Before 2000 lived in Jason Voorhees' town...no kidding!.....

And check out the many other great write-ups, HERE.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

A no-brainer choice for a young Han Solo....

Saw the Age of Adaline movie again last night with my betterhalf. The 'age' old question (pardon the pun) is still ...why the heck isn't Anthony Ingruber given the role of the young Han Solo already? Anthony does not only LOOK like Harrison Ford , he also SOUNDS like Ford, having perfected his Han Solo impersonation as a die-hard Star Wars fan all his life. 

I think the majority of Star Wars fans actually want this guy to play the part in the upcoming Disney Han Solo spin-offovie ...sadly I think the part had already been cast and it went to Alden Ehrenreich who in my opinion...does not look nor sound like our favorite smuggler at all....boo!

This is gonna haunt me.

How was your Force Friday?

I have been going to Hasbro's midnight launch for as long as I can remember. Well, the Attack of the Clones product launch in 2002 was the actual turning point for me having missed The Phantom Menace event back in '99 (if indeed there was any Force Friday event back then).

Anyway, I decided to skip the Rogue One launch at TRU on Force Friday because I wasn't really in the mood to go through the madness. I chose sleep over long hours of being in a queue to get my fix on the latest Star Wars merchandise.

I have always maintained that Star Wars products are over priced here in Malaysia as of late (ONE bloody 6" The Black Series action figure is USD35 equivalent here in Malaysia.....unbelievable). What's your response on this dear Hasbro Malaysia?

I woke up the morning after and immediately contacted an independent on-line seller which I've dealt several times with before. Trying my luck, I asked if he has the new Rogue One action figures in hand.....and the answer was a solid yes!

In the end, everything worked out fine for me. My decision to get a good night's rest paid off handsomely and to cap a wonderful morning I got all of the stuff that you see in the picture above at about 33% off the retail prices slapped by Hasbro Malaysia. You can keep the StarCard points to yourself too dear TRU.

Could this be the end of me buying Star Wars action figures at retail?

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Pop Culture League: Top Ten…..

I missed last week’s PCL essay challenge due to some unforeseen circumstances. Fret not for I am returning to the league this week in response to the excellent topic given by CommanderBrian…..”Top Ten….”. While there were many possible lists that I can venture into, there was always this one list that constantly lingered in my mind for these past couple of months or so. Fittingly, the topic seemed to be my avenue to finally channel my thoughts for everyone to read and decipher.

My take on this week’s assignment would be…..

“Top Ten Pop Culture Predictions for 2016 – 2020”

There. It felt good to simply just blurt that out. Truthfully, many ideas and (somewhat) irrational thoughts came into my mind during the last couple of months and the owner of the Cool and Collected blog seemed to have somehow tapped into my brain and wanting me to get my thoughts out for everyone to ponder over.

My Nostradamus head gear is ready. Without further ado (puts both hands on crystal ball):

#1 - More and more classic Hollywood movies or TV series will get the reboot treatment as film writers in general hits an all-time low in the creativity department. My money’s on a reboot of the Captain Powers & The Soldiers of the Future or the tale of the time-travelling duo in Voyager TV series next because I badly want to see both happening in my lifetime!

#2 – More outrageous acquisitions by Disney after the already massive coup of Marvel and Star Wars. I’m totally expecting them to get toymaker company Hasbro into their balance sheet and…….*drumroll*…….there would be an attempt to wrestle DC from their current parent company Warner Bros. Preposterous you say? We’ll see.

#3 – Price of a one-sixth collectible figure produced by Hot Toys will eventually equal to that of a car down payment. Really ridiculous and scary fact this is as buying one (1) Hot Toys collectible figure edges you closer and closer towards an unthinkable price points these days. This prediction, sadly, will come true sooner than we thought it would be if Hot Toys is allowed to skyrocket their price points at will.

#4 – McFarlane Toys will go back to producing movie-related action figures. I miss their Movie Maniacs line!

#5 – By the end of 2019, Disney will most probably decide to pursue Episodes 10 till 12 aka the FOURTH Star Wars Trilogy since it is a no-brainer money-makin’ engine to continuously entice Star Wars fans to come back for more. And just think about the gajilions to be made from the action-figure/merchandise department (re: point #2 above!). It makes so much sense doesn’t it?

#6 – Resurrections of music icons/bands long gone will be a norm in 2020 by way of doppelgangers who look or/and sound like the original standing in for the real deal. Think Kevin Parker (of Tame Impala) or Julian Lennon standing in for John Lennon and Dhani Harrison standing in for George for a new Beatles album then! *praying hard*. That South American dude who sounds exactly like Kurt Cobain might even join Dave and Krist for a new Nirvana album too by the end of the decade.

#7 – Shia LaBeouf will finally become a household name trouncing even the likes of hotly-anticipated hopefuls like Chris Pratt or Michael Fassbender. Scary.

#8 – Nessie will be proven real and those who continuously denied her existence up to this point will have to do community service by cleaning up pollution in Loch Ness.

#9 – There will be endless cashing in of (yet again) ‘nostalgia’ reunions by the boybands of yore….or have we grown tired of NKOTB and Backstreet Boys already?

#10 – Nope. Flying cars still won’t happen by 2020. Sorry Back to the Future fans!

Check out other posts done prior to mine by the other members of the Pop Culture League:

Green Plastic Squirt Gun lists down his Top Ten Monsters Cartoon of the Past.
20 Years Before 2000 lists down his Top Ten most Awesome 80s Commercial
Toy Break lists down his Top Ten most Favorite GI Joe Accessories.
Mr Smith's Plastic Bubble lists down his Top Ten most Influential Toy Line
Alexis' Universe also lists down his Top Ten Favorite Toy Line
The Toy Box lists down his Top Ten most Memorable GI Joe figures
Marc Allie lists down his Top Ten Seasons of Power Rangers

Read much more from rest of the League HERE.

Anybody going to the local Malaysia Rogue One midnight product launch this Thursday night/Friday midnight?

The long queue at my local #tru at midnight yesterday. All for the love of The Force Awakens merchandises. #starwars #forcefriday #geeksdotheunthinkable

A little bit of a rant today since I’m in the mood. Hah!

I’ve been going to Hasbro’s Star Wars product launch since 2002’s Attack of the Clones event at the very same Toys R Us/TRU here in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Why I didn’t attend nor partake in such a similar event prior to the release of The Phantom Menace is beyond me (oh wait, could it be possibly because I was still that nerdy university student at the time who didn’t have much excess moolah to buy action figures?).

Whatever it is, the story is still the same after a good 14 years later.

You get in line early, probably a good 2-3 hours before the actual product launch. Some of us might arrive way too early at 9.30pm-ish and find that the queue line hadn’t even started to form yet thus inevitably making us the ultimate dweeb for over estimating things. Some of us might under estimate things and casually stroll in front of the TRU at half past 11pm and find that the queue had made its way past the half kilometer mark inside the shopping mall.

Then there are those a***heads aka the dreaded scalpers who thought that they could be ahead of everyone’s game. Thinking that they know someone on the inside e.g. a TRU supervisor or Hasbro’s staff on duty, they can technically ‘reserve’ whatever they want without actually queuing up like everyone else does. And yes, I’ve seen these ‘inside persons’ reserving the stuff for these scalpers much to the dismay of those forming the long lines outside of the TRU store.

We’re most probably gonna see some sort of price hike since it’s actually a norm for Star Wars product prices to be jacked up from time to time. Slapping some ridiculous price points on highly demanded soon-to-be-launched Star Wars action figures etc seemed to make sense in the economic view. So expect your wallet (or credit card) to be burned…..really hard.

If you’re at the back end of the line then brace yourselves to be green with envy for those who came in at the very front who’d get their stuff much quicker than youse at the back and checking out at the cashier counters early. Watch how they seem to proudly dangle their loot as they strut pass you to make their way back to their cars. This would also be the point when you’d be setting your hopes high as you decipher what items are available inside the store from the shape of their plastic bags (and could be yours too once it’s your turn to enter the TRU premise) to come home with you.

Once/if you manage to get the stuff that you want then most probably Hasbro is gonna throw in some freebies (I’m betting on posters as usual) into your tote/plastic bags when you check out at their cashiers for you to take home. By this point many of the action figures and merchandises would be ‘sold out already’ thus leaving many collectors at the very tail end of the queue cursing their luck and the thought of having to resort to eVilbay to get the stuff that they want starts to linger in their already clouded mind (“Buy stuff on-line you must NOT when tired you are from Hasbro’s zombie-like sale!”).

After all is said and done you’d find yourself back home at about 2am-ish with the horrific thoughts of being at the office in mere hours with your zombie-like appearances complete with sagging eye bags and red eyes. All worth it for the love of new Star Wars action figures? Heck yeah…..(so we thought).

The much sought after (then) First Order Stormtroopers is now dumped throughout all retail stores and TRUs alike everywhere, not even a year after being released. It was also marked down to a record low of RM40 (that’s about USD9.50 by today’s forex rate) each during a recent warehouse sale but nobody seemed to be wanting it anymore.


Weeks later we’re probably gonna find out that the same ‘sold out’ stocks are being replenished (sometimes in abundance) not only at TRUs and other retail stores nationwide. So getting your stuff earlier than everybody else can give you that cheap thrill if that’s your cup of tea.

To each his own I guess, yea? Now excuse me while I ponder and make my decision. Should I get all hyped up and join the madness that is Force Friday later today (Malaysian time)?

I still have time to decide.....LOL.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Shin Gojira ("Godzilla Resurgence") was retro fun!

I understand that the film will only be released sometime in October for youse in the States so those who want to avoid any form of spoilers can steer clear from reading my rant on the film below....
Seriously, you can navigate away from this page now....
Last chance!
Ok....here goes!

Since its debut sometime in the 50s, Gojira or Godzilla to the rest of the world has been redefining pop culture's monster/creature feature with profound impact. With close to 30 films by Toho Pictures done on the creature, it was a matter of time before Hollywood dip their hands into the franchise (more on this later).

Let me be clear. I love classic retro action movies no matter how  cheesy or goofy the special effects might be. During my student days I'd spent many hours in between late night studying sessions watching Akira Kurosawa/Toshiro Mifune's films because I loved the blood spraying/splattering effects and flying limbs sequence so much. Honestly, those classic films immediately sprung into my mind when the classic Toho Pictures and the 50s/60s inspired opening theme opened this 

Having said those, I also enjoyed the retro score throughout the film. Real throwback to the classic Toho films of yesteryear.

I find it rather fitting for the Japanese to finally revisit their favorite kaiju in light of the recent release of Gareth Edward's 2014 movie i.e. "Godzilla" which was in my opinion, a great savior of the whole Godzilla/Gojira franc hise after the tragedy that is 1998's Roland Emmerich's flick of the same name. 

Drama, action (albeit not as much that I hoped for) and humor (?)....is the recipe of a great monster movie....right?

There were light hearted moments and sometimes they felt a bit comedic too especially scenes involving the Japanese Prime Minister. I don't know how other audience would react to these but the audience in the cinema my family and I went to burst into fits of giggles and laughter whenever the PM was caught in some sort of on-the-spot decision making situation. Unintentional I supposed but the comedy worked!

I find it amusing that a Japanese American presidential envoy/hopeful is thrown into the fray with all of her political connotations and references. Thus it made me wonder....could it be that the film is somehow subtly mirroring real-life US-Japan relations? Let's not go there....LOL.

I gotta admit that I almost dozed off a couple of times too during the many and over used 'board room' discussion scenes between the Prime Minister and his ministers/advisers. Truthfully I felt that the film could've done more without many of the scenes.

Now let us get into the star attraction of the film!

This is your classic Japanese Godzilla monster here from the short snout design, the stubby legs, the radiation glow on his body,  the unmistakable spikes on its back and right down to the goofy googly eyes. Make no mistake though as he is one mean kaiju as he terrorizes through Tokyo with his sheer might. Godzilla started out as a marine type of sea monster who ploughed through the Japanese metropolis (think seals or walruses) by moving slowly using its belly.  He evolves slowly into the Godzilla that we know as we progressed to the final act of the film. 

I love the combination of CGI, men in rubber suits and practical live effects as what I saw on screen was convincing enough for me as compared to the many other overly-CGIed monster flicks of recent time.

I was left in awe every time Godzilla unleashed his radioactive prowess by emiting rays and such via his mouth and tail. 

Gone are the days of unconvincing miniaturised models as most of the building and vehicle models used were seamlessly mashed up with the real ones during the many chaotic scenes.

Personally, I felt that there wasn't enough rampaging by Godzilla himself although we got to see a great deal of destruction throughout the movie. The movie however opened up so many possibilities for more outrageous sequels in the future, perhaps even one with crossovers or cameos from other Japanese legendary screen characters e.g. Ultraman etc.? I can't wait.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Transformers Generations Legends Class Autobot Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

Whaddup peeps? I’m gonna spend some time today to talk about something which I seldom talk about these days as opposed to the customary Star Wars or Marvel Legends-related stuff of late. One of my favorite pastime is to dig through discount bins at the toy department in retail outlets (or ‘el cheapo bin’ as my 8-year old kid like to say it because he says his daddy likes ‘cheap but cool’ stuff…hahah, sue me) for hidden treasures and fantastic toys of yore that had somehow escaped the hawk-eyes of hungry collectors.

Talking about Hasbro’s/Takara Tomy’s Transformers action figures, I am usually partial to the Voyager/Deluxe scale and I don’t find myself intrigued that much with scales other than the two. I’ve only just recently ventured into the Masterpiece line (probably about a year or so I think) so I think I have progressed into the bigger sized TFs rather than scaling down. So what I’m gonna say next is probably a shocker to you readers and me alike.
I just bought myself a ‘Legend-class’ Transformers action figure. The Transformers Generations Powerglide figure.
Yeap, that’s right. Legend class figures are those small TFs you see annoyingly warming the pegs everywhere (*cough*….Dark of The Moon Cyberverse figures…..*cough*).  When I say annoying it means that Hasbro Malaysia will usually let these unwanted pile of Legend-class figures until they are destined to be chucked inside some discount bin. However, the ‘Generations’ Legend figures tend disappear faster than the less popular DoTM Cyberverse Legends for very obvious reasons. One’s a faithful reproduction of the all-time favorite G1 cartoon series and the other’s from the very controversial movies by a certain Michael Bay.

I usually steer clear from even touching the Cyberverse figures because they don’t mean as much to my collection of mostly G1 characters and designs. Heck, there was even an instance where they were going on clearance (I think it was RM5 per pop or about a buck and a quarter American dollar each) back during a warehouse sale but even then I wasn’t even intrigued to pick them up.

Two things. Firstly, Legends scale is way smaller than the Deluxe/Voyager scale. My OCD-ness will never allow me to pick any Legends up and mix them with my preferred scales. Secondly, I can never bring myself to buy a small TF figure with such a premium asking price. They’re about RM50 each here in Malaysia at their full retail price (or USD12.50) when it’s only 8 or 9 bucks in the states.

Okay, so it’s the price that really bothered me the most. I terribly want Powerglide (yes, even at this Legends scale) for my G1 shelf. I missed out on the Voyager scale versions many years ago although that one has a less-than-impressive sculpt and design. But hey, it’s Powerglide we’re talking about and there ain’t seem to be enough of him around for us collectors. Screen-accurate ones I mean. So when I saw this one sitting pretty in the discount bin all by himself in a sea of other peg warmers (i.e. Rodimus and the likes) I knew it is time to finally snag him. If you’re wondering, I got him for a mere 6 American dollars. I don’t how cheap this would be for you in the States but in Malaysia a Transformers toy could only get oh-so low. I have been looking for him extensively but somehow I didn’t find him in the open. Ebay prices were so ridiculous that I was ready to go without him in my collection. Lady luck seemed to be smiling on me today.


Let’s get on with the figure.

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

The packaging -  I kinda like the way Hasbro’s blister card packaging style with the character art at the top of the card and all. The blister/thermoformed plastic pack works really well here since the figure’s kinda light anyway for it to drop off from the card. Anyway, the packaging on mine was full of tape, presumably the blister plastic was starting to fall off from the card. Well, the line did come out way back in 2014, so the glue must have been wearing out after two years. Nothing that a good ‘ol X-acto knife can’t handle!

Let’s see him in his ‘bot mode!

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

He looks awesome and seems to be an almost accurate reproduction of his classic 80s look from the G1 cartoon series. I love everything about him, that face sculpt especially. His design is top-class except for the bulk in his legs….*ugh*….but I believe Hasbro/Takara Tomy will work to correct/reduce the bulk in the near future should they ever decide to revisit Powerglide (and at a bigger scale I hope!).

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

This aircraft is very faithful to the A-10 Warthog aircraft design! It’s THE design that inspired both the Cobra Rattler from GI Joe and Powerglide here! How cool is that? Talk about throwback to the 80s.

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

Legends Class Powerglide

For most G1 fans, when you talk about Powerglide, you’d probably be reminded of ‘The girl who loved Powerglide’ episode, because this is one awesome homage to that character we know and love.

Scale wise?

I can’t help it but scale issues will always bug me in the Transformers action figures collecting environment. Sure the Legends scale is smaller than the Voyager/Deluxe scale but judging from pictures from the G1 cartoon, Powerglide does not look that much bigger than the humans after all. So I guess the Legends scale works for Powerglide here.

But hey, it’s the TF universe after all….and the mighty Allsparks controlled the sizes of them ‘bots at will! So who’s to say the scales are all wrong eh?

The Rebel’s verdict:

It’s a tad frustrating, since I think this figure could have been up-scaled to work as a Deluxe or Voager with very little tweaking. Nonetheless, if you look at Powerglide here as a stand-alone figure, this little guy simply can’t be beaten and seemed to be the best G1 Powerglide ever produced by Hasbro. Personally, I think it is ironic that Hasbro is seen to be focusing some of their design work into the Legends Class scale rather than the Voyager/Deluxe scale. One can only hope.