Whatever's cool with me...

Whatever's cool with me...

Monday, July 15, 2013

Nickelodeon TMNT figures...



Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

As most of you would now know, we south-east Asian collectors only JUST recently got our TMNT fix (both classic and new) through our local TRUs. I've blabbed about them Classic TMNT figures last month. At that point I wasn't even sure whether I was gonna pick up the 'New' Turtle figures since I had proudly professed to be a strictly 'Classics' fan only. But then after reading through so many reviews on-line about the 'New' fab four, I suddenly realised that I've just got to have 'em in my collection! I'll tell you the reasons why if you have the time to go through my yapping today. But in a nut 'shell' (Get the pun? Shell? As in turtle shell? Hahah....*oh boy* it's gettin' lamer and lamer ain't it?), these newer versions of our beloved Turtles are somewhat better than the 'giant' Classics! The 'Classic' Turtles stand at about 6"-7"....a tad bit too tall if ya ask me....so that makes these new Turtles at a better height at 5" if they were to be displayed together with the rest of your 6" collection. Anyway before I go into too detail into those, let's start my review by looking into the 'packaging' style......


Packaging

Ahh....nothing beats the ol' blister bubble plastic on a cardback display method. It gets the job done, minimizes wastage of space and you'd get to properly examine the contents inside. Could you ask for more really? I prefer this anytime over unnecessary huge box-style practised by some toy companies out there.
 
My local TRUs had abundant stocks of these new Turtles. While the Classics were seemed to be depleting at most outlet, the new Turtles seems to be re-stocked steadily at almost every weekend! I had a blast with my wife and son choosing them Turtles with the best paint apps and such...there were just so many to choose from, which is a good thing.

Many cross-eyed moments later, we settled with these....

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Rip them packaging apart!

I wasted no time in getting the four guys out of their packaging. Sure, they were stunning just sitting there pretty inside the plastic cell...but hey, can't you really resist NOT opening them? Everybody knows that you'll get a tonne of weapons and accessories with a Ninja Turtle figure!

Apart from their main weapons i.e. Leonardo with his katana blades, Raphael with his sai, Michaelangelo with his nunchucks and Donatello with his bo staff, they also come with a smorgasbord of weapons, all safely attached to each Turtles' weapon tray. I didn't even bother to detach those as I am already contented with the boys holding their main weapons in hand already. Perhaps later in the future...for added display options. But for now, let me just tell you one of the real reason why I had to get these new Turtles....

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

For the record, I've read and seen how so many collectors had re-painted these Turtles to give them the proper 'paint wash' that they truly deserve! Many had complained that the Turtles have been given such interesting sculpts but they sorely lack the paint wash to bring out those details. That's what I immediately did after I took them out of their packaging. They were 'clean' aka just as they were when they first got out of their plastic cells for about half an hour or so (that was when I quickly plotted in my mind on how to go about with the 'paint wash' and stuff).
 
There are so many great customisers out there who not only gave the weapons, shell and accessories the much needed paint wash, they had even gave them Turtles a nice grimy look by splashing some paint over the 'flesh' part. I didn't want to go down that road so I kinda skipped the flesh/body and I gave more emphasis towards their accessories/weapons and their shell.

Nickelodeon TMNT - custom paint

I was kinda anxious to see how my amateurish painting skills comes to fruition myself. It has been a while since I last painted or customised any action figures so I was kinda shakey in the beginning. In the end, it turned out pretty okay I guess. Well, not 'great' as some of you collectors have displayed much earlier....but I'm quite satisfied with how they turned out...heheh.

Anyway, let's get into the Turtles. We'll start with Leonardo.....

Leonardo

I've thought of giving you a glimpse of the bio at the back of each card. The bio is unique to each character. There is also a visual list of the other characters from Series/Wave 1 that came together with the Turtles but I'm not really interested in them....hence the lack of picture over here....LOL. Seriously, I only did plan to get them four boys...and none of the 'wrong-scaled' characters.

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

The first thing I did was paint the weapons over to give them that realistic look instead of letting them be in their 'plasticky' form. A metal weapon has to look 'metal', their grip has to look as if they're safe to hold etc...you get the drift.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Hereeee's Leo!
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

I immediately gave them some black wash over their shell, both front and back, over their 'bandages', kneepads, over their teeth and bandanas....but like I've said before, I left their body/flesh as they were. I added some details over their leather accessories i.e belts, sheaths and stuff but didn't really 'weathered' them down like some customisers did. 
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Raphael

Here's Ralph's bio for you to go over. He'll always be the loner/rebel-type Turtle to me....always going againts status quo and challenging the norms. He was my favourite when I was small and he is still my favourite now.

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

As Leo's, I went and painted Ralph's sai (pointy knife-dagger for you not in the know....heheh) first, but I guess the 'metal' paint flaked off a bit soon after. Not THAT bad but noticebly there if you closely inspect them. I'd probably re-paint them over sometime soon but for now they'll do.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Ralph was the most exciting figure to give the paint wash to! I mean, he has all those details on his face and his shell. The most glaring change you can see is how his teeth seemed to have 'popped' out after giving him the black paint wash. These Turtles looked like they jumped out of the Mirage comic book pages!
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

The paint wash wasn't that prominent on Ralph's shell though but you can still see traces of black paint trickling and seaping into the creases of his shell.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Michaelangelo

To be honest (and I think I've mentioned this before in my 'Classics' post before) I wasn't that much of a fan of Mikey before and I think I never did become one. I mean, no offense to you Michaelangelo fans but I was more of Ralph person....and everybody knows what kind of a Turtle he was/is....heheh. Nevertheless, I can't be omitting Mikey out of the line-up now can I? It's kinda like an unwritten rule....when you buy one Ninja Turtle, you kinda have to buy 'em all!

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

I've seen several great customisers applying real 'chains' onto Mikey's nunchucks! That's really awesome! I cheaped out and decided to just paint the plastic chain over with silver....*meh*...in addition to the brown color for the handles and gold for both ends of the weapon.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Being my least favourite among them four dudes does not mean Mikey's gonna go unnoticed. He received an equally bodacious black paint wash too....hehh.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

I personally love how his shell is highlighted by the black paint wash!
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Donatello

Donnie was the inventor/scientist for the group. I've always thought that only them nerds would go for him...hahah. I must say, I like Donnie's figure the best over here....even more than Ralph, dare I say it! Wanna know why? I'll tell you in a bit. I find it a bit ridiculous when Nickelodeon gave him that 'gap-toothed' appearance in the new series. Even more absurd when the toys themselves don't even look like how they are on-screen? Anyway, I'm loving the toys more than how they are in the Nick' series.

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

As for Donnie's bo staff, I gave the 'wood' part some wash to highlight the details and I painted the tape/handle white and also some black wash to give it that 'used' look.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Take a look at that moody-serious overtone on his face people! No teeth-baring or silly grinning from Donnie....just that deep, serious and thoughtful gaze from him. He may be my favourite sculpt among the four! He also (accidently) happens to be the most 'dirtiest' Turtle among the four as I think that I might've gave him a wee bit too much wash on his bandages and his knee pads....LOL. Not a problem. I think I like how he looks.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

I gave Donnie a bit of highlight here and there to bring out the hidden details.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Articulation wise
 
Now, what can say about their articulations? well....they absolutely ROCK! You can have tonnes of fun posing them whatever poseable action stance you can think of really. They are really well articulated.   Each of them feature a ball jointed neck and ball joints in the shoulders, hips, elbows, and knees as well as swivel-joints in the wrists.  Unfortunately they don't have that much-needed joint at their waists or ankles, but still, that's the kind of crazy articulations we're gettin' over here. Not Marvel Legends-Toybiz era crazy...but you get the idea.

What's more amazing is that they don't cost as much as a Star Wars 3.75" action figure. By the way, have you guys even heard/seen the latest Star Wars 'All-New' Mission Series line...those figures only have 5 points-of-articulations for crying out loud! So what I'm saying here is that you're getting a deal here as you're getting more plastic (these Turtles are way bulkier/bigger than the SW figs), more articulations and at a lower price than Hasbro's latest SW offerings. Ain't that great?

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
 
I think these Turtles' designs are more of a throwback to the Mirage Studios comic books rather than the Nickelodeon TV series. The Turtles even have no pupils just like how they appeared in the comic pages. I was never really into the comics and more of the 80s cartoon show fan myself but I can understand why so many fans really look up to the comic book series. The Turtles were portrayed to be more aggressive and have a more 'darker' undertone to them....and some fans prefer them to be that way rather than the four fun-loving dudes we saw on TV. I think NECA produced some excellent action figures based on how they appeared in the comics.....I remembered all four of them wearing the same colour.....red, rather than the four different colour codes we remembered (and fondly recognize) from the classic 80s cartoon series. To each his own!
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

I digress when I say that even the 'Classic' Turtles (which is supposedly THE most revered version amongst us 'classic' collectors) couldn't match up to these 'new' Turtles. They are simply amazing and they fit a whole lot better too with your Marvel Legends or DCUCs compared to the Classics!
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
 
Sculpt and paint wise
 
Get this, all four Turtles have unique sculpts on them. Their headsculpt, shell, body parts, skin tone, bandana, weapons are all different from one another. As opposed to their 'Classic' counterpart (who only have the different coloured bandanas to tell them apart), there are no re-use of parts here for the 'new' Turtles....or at least that's how it seems. I think I've also read somewhere on this. Based on all of these, I honestly think that these 'new' versions win over the 'Classics' hands down in so many way! You might have a different opinion altogether from me.

The other thing that striked my attention is the 'elephant' feet that Playmates gave to the new Turtles. Might seem odd initially but it will grow on you. I personally feel the bigger feet gives a more sturdier look to the Turtles and even helps them to be more stabil when you pose them.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

As I've mentioned before, these Turtles have only basic paint on them and I think Playmates left it to the customisers to run with it and go nuts with their customising abilities. Seriously, if only Playmates had taken the trouble to give these figures the black paint wash they sorely need, then I think they would have been perfect! My other only complaint is that the weapons are cast and left in their plastic form hence they look more plastic than what they're supposed to be. Not a major thing since some simple paint work will fix the issue. Other than these two, we're all good in the paint department. Some people might even prefer the Turtles in their basic color....perhaps allowing your smaller kids to play with it without any fear of paint smear? Your mileage will vary. From a collector/fan point of view I feel that the Turtles are destined to be painted over to make them look their best.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

THE REBEL'S VERDICT: I do like these new Nickelodeon Turtles action figures better than the Classic TMNT figures! I gotta admit, I did kinda scoffed at these figures in the beginning but I now realise that they are more superior than most 'Turtle figures we've seen before. What can I say that I haven't mentioned before? These are a MUST buy for you TMNT enthusiasts! Similarly, if you're a casual fan who appreciates good quality action figures then these are worth to stand amongst your other figures on your shelves.
 
Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

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5 Comments:

desmond said...

these are definitely awesome figures...glad to hear you collect too..

The Rebel said...

Des....they have great sculpts and designs....PLUS they're rather cheap if compared to most action figures out there in the market....what's not to like? heheh....

zharifzakaria said...

great review!! i felt the same about the unwritten law.. tomorrow i'm gonna get the rest of the turtles

Chris de Villiers said...

Hi, great customs. I am trying to paint my weapons but the paint keeps rubbing/flaking off! And with acrylic I cant get a nice red finish on the handles like you do, it dries all "powdery" (lack of better description).

The Rebel said...

Thanks for the kind words Chris! Maybe you could use the 'glossy' ones instead of matte.