Whatever's cool with me...

Whatever's cool with me...

Monday, December 28, 2015

Observations from watching The Force Awakens for the umpteenth time...


Is it even safe to discuss spoilers from Star Wars TFA at this point of time? We're clear from the 1-week mark since the date of release that's for sure. Obviously if you haven't watched the movie already you'd steer clear from clicking the link to this posting of mine.

I've re-watched TFA again yesterday afternoon with my family at the expense of Peanuts The Movie (even my son wanted to see The First Order again rather than Charlie Brown's troops!). Seriously...the movie gets better every darn time.

I've got a few thoughts cooked up inside of me since re-watching the film yesterday.  You see, you tend to over analyze things when you have the liberty (and time) to really look at the finer details of the film. For example, during the opening scene right after crawl,  instead of being awed by the sheer might of the Star Destroyer, I focused my sight on how many Stormtrooper troop transport were dispatched to Jakku.

So you more or less know where this discussion is heading now right?

Let's just start with a light observation first shall we? I've got a more serious argument coming up too but seeing that one has got something to do with the plot, we'd better be saving that off for another day. Now obviously my argument today has got something to do with X-Wings since I've got a picture of them...well, of them toys plastered at the very beginning of this post.

*SPOILER ALERT*......turn around now if you haven't seen the movie already....you've been forewarned.

Ok....here goes......

Notice when the Resistance X-Wings were about to make their hyperspace jump from Illeenium to Starkiller Base? There were 12 of them....I counted. These same dozen arrived and have been accounted for upon their arrival at the 'Base (again I did a quick count).

I could have sworn more than 6 were destroyed during the ensuing battle with the TIE Fighters and turbolasers fired from the ground. It really mindboggled me when seven (7) X-Wings made it home with the Millenium Falcon. Have my simple maths failed me?

I shall be further analyzing this when I have the blu-ray in my hands many months from now...hahah.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Out of my way, ball!

Out of my way...ball! #starwars #starwarsmalaysia #starwarsfanboysmalaysia #theforceawakens #milleniumfalcon #bb8

I'm not sure how long we'd have to restrain ourselves from talking about the new Star Wars movie or post any pictures related to the film. But here's one part of the movie that carved a smile on my face. It's the part where our favorite scoundrel displayed his cockiness on a helpless little ball droid.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Han Solo DL-44 Blaster made easy!

The #lazertag #hansolo #dl44blaster custom paint project is complete. A big shout out to my better half for becoming the hand model for this finished product  #starwarsmalaysia #starwarsfanboysmalaysia #cozwearegeekslikedat #geekshavethemostfun

I finally did it. Finally a decent looking Han Solo DL-44 blaster gun is in my hands!

Back in 1997, a company called Tiger Electronics produced the Star Wars Lazertag game set. Actually I'm not even sure if it can be called a 'game set'. Tiger Electronics have in fact produced the Lazertag guns before they produced the superb DL-44 blasters aka Han Solo's laser gun in '97. To those not in the know, Lazertag is a game where at least two participants are needed to take each other our via an electronic laser aiming mechanism which is strapped on each person's chest. You have 10 'lives' each and each time your opponent blast you directly on your chest targeting device, you lose 1 life and so on so forth until one of you exhaust the 10 lives limit (that's when your chest device lets out a blaring alarm to indicate your loss!). Simple isn't it? In some countries there are also Lazertag tournaments where more than 2 persons compete against each other, often in teams.

Game on! #lazertag #starwars #starwarsmalaysia #80s #90s #geekshavethemostfun #ilhanology

I didn't get the Lazertag Star Wars Edition in 1997. I got it through a clearance sale held by a local audio/video store sometime earlier this year on the cheap. And when I say cheap I really do mean cheap. In fact it was too cheap, in the beginning I thought I was about to buy a counterfeit product. The box had 1997 printed on it so I take it these were produced way back then, 18 years ago to be exact. I had fears that the electronics won't work but thankfully they did.

A couple of days ago I finally started the project which I envisioned many months ago. Actually it was my dear son's idea to convert the obvious DL-44 blasters to look like the real thing i.e. by slapping it some paint. Glad I finally found the time to do it.

Game on! #lazertag #starwars #starwarsmalaysia #80s #90s #geekshavethemostfun #ilhanology

Merry X-Mas & A Happy New Year to All!


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

*TFA SPOILER of some sort* Where's 'Constable Zuvio' in The Force Awakens?!



Constable Zuvio is/was one of the most intriguing character off the Star Wars Black Series action figure line. That's right, I was curious from the moment Hasbro announced that they'd be offering us two incarnations of the character i.e. one in the 6" Black Series line and one in the 5-POA 3.75" line. On the onset he looks menacing enough to be a villain. Later I found out that he's kind of a 'policeman' on planet Tatooi...err....Jakku. An enforcer is more like it. Policeman...enforcer..whatever. What's certain is that he is a person of authority on Jakku. From the screen capture above, we can see that he's leading some kind of a 'police/enforcer team' to preserve peace and tranquility on Jakku. Sadly I heard that his scenes were omitted from the final movie altogether. 

Funny that the image above was strewn across many magazines and publications that touched on The Force Awakens months before the movie's release when the character itself was not given screen time. Did Abrams and co. decided to cut his scenes at the 11th hour? While I'm not too disappointed with the fact that this dude didn't appear in the movie, I'd just like to say that his action figures has potential to be highly sought after in the aftermarket. Well, not right away at least (he is still peg warming at most retail outlets for the time being). But you get the drift. 

Constable Zuvio has just been given the 'Christopher Lee/Saruman' treatment in The Return of The King. I remembered how pissed off the great Christopher Lee was upon learning that his part had been totally cut off from the cinematic release of RoTK. When mentioned that he'd appear anyway in the DVD/blu-ray release, he swiftly answered "What's the point?!". Unfortunately we'd never get to know the actor who played/provided the motion-capture movements for Zuvio so he's technically not available for comments for the moment. I'm betting that we're gonna see Constable Zuvio in the blu-ray release of The Force Awakens sometime late next year. 

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Early birthday prezzies from my better half! This geek is very happy.

Early birthday prezzies from my better half!

Early birthday prezzies from my better half!

No words could describe how ecstatic I am right now with these early birthday presents from my dearest wife. Absolutely love the classic X-Wing 1/72 scale model (must....find....time....to build!). Additionally, I now have two further magazines to read through before seeing the movie this week. Way to go!

Totally dig that sweater/hoodie. It looks blue on the onset, but under some lighting, it gives you that 'brownish' hue....how about that for some Han Solo jacket controversy in The Empire Strikes Back eh? 

FN-2187

I was raised to do one thing, but I've got nothing to fight for..... #finn #FN2187 #starwars #theforceawakens #firstorderstormtrooper #starwarsmalaysia #starwarsfanboysmalaysia

I was raised to do one thing, but I've got nothing to fight for.....

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Teaser poster: Godzilla Resurgence/Shin Gojira....

Godzilla Resurgence /Shin Gojira

Let's take a break from all of the Star Wars hype shall we?

I'm particularly excited for this one. Who doesn't love a creepy looking Godzilla eh?! July 2016 could not come any sooner!

Saturday, December 5, 2015

The Force Awakens at Subway sandwich too...

Star Wars The Force Awakens Subway keychains...

Even Subway decided to jump in the bandwagon. Not only the keychain looks cool, it's pretty sizable too and not as small as I had expected it to be. Week #1 gives us Rey on her Jakku speeder, followed by the First Order Stormtrooper, Kylo Ren and BB-8. I'm so gonna get them all.


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The Force Awakens covered in Entertainment Weekly....

I got my copy...and away we go! #starwars #starwarsmalaysia #starwarsfanboysmalaysia #entertainmentweekly #theforceawakens #geekyread #geekshavethemostfun

Get the latest EW to dig up more clues on the upcoming SW flick. I was really hoping to read more on the mysterious circumstances surrounding the fate of Luke Skywalker but instead I found out that JJ Abrams had slapped a heavy price should Mark Hamill spilled the beans. Bummer. Guess we'd have to wait for Dec 17 after all.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Building up anticipation for The Force Awakens....

#starwars #theforceawakens ...just two words = CAN'T....WAIT! #starwarsmalaysia #bb8 #funkopop

Like any true blue Star Wars geeks, my family and I have already bought the advance tickets for The Force Awakens. Totally not telling you guys where (and when) we'd be catching the movie although some Malaysians may instantly recognize which cinema those tickets belong to (*shush!!*).

This particular cinema also offered a special combo where you'd get to purchase a Funko Pop of your choice (from a total of 6 The Force Awakens' characters) together with a soda & popcorn set for a mere RM49.90 (that's just about USD12.50  as per today's forex rate). I doubt that many would actually want the soda & popcorn set when all that they care about is the Funko Pop vinyl figurine. My son and I even saw one dude proudly hogging a dozen or so of these Funko Pops while we made our way to the concession stand to get ourselves a BB-8. We were rather lucky as we managed to get the second to last BB-8 (seemed that he's a heavy favorite at par with Kylo Ren & the Stormie!).


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Star Wars - The Force Awakens' 3.75" scale Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

In the initial The Force Awakens trailer/teaser, surely one cannot miss seeing that white-blue colored X-Wing looming at the background while JJ Abrams gave us his first insights on the new Star Wars instalment. Since then, although the black-orange X-Wing has been appearing in subsequent trailers, many had speculated that we would eventually see a white-blue X-Wing leading up the Resistance charge against the First Order. I guess he will switch from white-blue to black-orange at some point in the movie (but we'd have to wait till December to find out ain't it?). Anyway, supposedly Walmart is currently selling the white-blue X-Wing in their stores right now. I'd love to get my hands on one but the lack of Walmarts in my country may just hinder that for a little while longer.

Cementing itself as one of the most bad-a** Star Wars vehicle of all time is the aggressive looking black-orange colored Poe Dameron X-Wing. While we got so used to seeing the grey-red colored ones,  it's actually refreshing to see a different color scheme on the much-loved T-65 starfighter.

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Personally, I absolutely love the new Kylo Ren-themed art for the new TFA toys. Not only Kylo's image at the top right corner of each packaging, but also the main art itself. I bought 3 deluxe sets for my son thus far and I told him to never throw away the packagings. The hand painted art are absolutely gorgeous. It reminds me a great deal of the box art of MOTU toys of the 80s. I seriously can't remember if any Star Wars had such cool packaging art ever. Did they?

My favourite bit? The front of the packaging depicts an image of the X-Wing as it flew rapidly near the surface of an 'icy' planet (Hoth?) as a lone First Order TIE Fighter gives chase. 

Awesome. 


Before I start blabbing about this new incarnation of the X-Wing, I just want to get the negatives out first. Just a couple:

1) If you've read the many reviews out there already then you might notice by now that the scale issue is among the hotly debated topic among collectors.

For the record, this 3.75" scale X-Wing is just slightly bigger than its corresponding LEGO version. Simply means that the LEGO version is a better scaled version of the two as the minifigure is way smaller than Hasbro's figure. 

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Let us compare Poe's fighter with the previously released Wedge Antilles' fighter. It is noticeably smaller in size. My immediate thoughts upon seeing this is how I was going to squeeze Poe's action figure into the cockpit? 

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

I admit that I was initially hesitant to pick this X-Wing up because of the same issue (I obviously/eventually picked it up at a specialty toy store at slightly below market price) but I decided that its aesthetic is probably more important than its functionality (not that I really play with my toy planes these days anyway!). 

I won't even go into the 5-POA action figure issue as I've talked about this already in my earlier postings on TFA toys. I think the figure looks great (more on this later) and with a bit of effort, the obviously oversized action figure can indeed fit into the undersized starfighter. Heck, I might even display the Black X-Wing without Poe inside the cockpit. So that's that.

So, scale issue? I can live with that.

2) One thing bothers me more than the scale issue i.e. the 'bent plastic' controversy. Parts of these new X-Wings are made out of  flimsy rubber particularly the cannons and the nose cone. Chances are most collectors will face the same predicaments as these are mass-produced toys anyway.

I  am not sure if heating up the plastic cannons will allow us to straighten them back into place or further distort their shape. Not even going to try doing it to the nose cone! I'd like to hear from my fellow collectors if they have other means of correcting these anomalies. I've done my best by slowly shaping/bending them back into place but that's as far as I'd go with them.

Ok. I'm done with the grouses. Now on with the niceties!

Poe’s X-Wing fighter  comes with an exclusive (and obvious) Poe Dameron figure, complete with his blaster and  helmet. I love it that this new design of the X-Wing incorporates the looks and features of the T-65 from the original trilogy and the blue-white starfighter used during the Clone Wars. Nice nod to both OT and PT.

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing


Poe Dameron's X-Wing is obviously now black in color since he is the leader of the Black Squadron. I think he's also called Black Leader too if I'm not mistaken. The new X-Wing is now a T-70 model, apparently an upgrade from the T-65 from 30 years earlier.

The classic fighter had 4 big circular reactors, 2 on each side where else the new Black X-Wing has still 4 reactors albeit the circular shapes are now divided in two on each wing.

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing



The X-Wing can launch a red missile and has a landing gear. As you could notice on the box, there’s BB-8! He’s not removable as it’s when you push him that the wings open and the button behind him is to close them, however his head can move which is nice. If you want a figure of BB-8 per se, you need to buy the 2-Pack figures with the Unkar’s thugs and Jakku Scavenger. 

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Concerning the colors, it changes from the usual red and grey X-Wing, black and orange looks pretty badass. With a little effort, Poe’s figure does fit in the cockpit so that is good thing! The figure itself has a removable helmet which is an improvement comparing to the figure in the 1st Space wave assortment. It’s a 5POA figure with a ball-jointed head articulation. Great sculpt and paint apps. It does look somewhat similar to Oscar Isaac, the actor who played Poe in the movie. 

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing


Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

The design of this new pilot suit remains in the style of the X-Wing pilots from the OT as we find the white and orange colors again, it gives a fresh new look to the pilot suit. The helmet is also different, it’s a mix of the Phase 1.5 Clone Pilots from The Clone Wars (the top of the helmet) and the X-Wing pilot helmets from the OT. It’s interesting to see an inspiration from both the OT and TCW for this new ship and pilot suits, it gives something great, a mix between OT era and PT era. 

#poedameron #starwars #theforceawakens #xwing #t70

In my opinion, despite all of the negativity surrounding this piece of toy/collectible, I think this is a must-have in any Star Wars fans' collection.

Star Wars The Force Awakens - 3.75" Poe Dameron's X-Wing

Monday, November 9, 2015

Marvel Legends Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Let's get this clear. I've not blogged about any ML figures since God knows when. If I recalled correctly, my last succesfully assembled BAF was either the Ultimate Green Goblin or that SHIELD Mandroid (ugh, yea I know I haven't finished building Odin yet...what a bummer).

Getting my BAF Hulkbuster complete was quite a challenge too. You see, when most 'smart' collectors chose to buy the whole wave at one go through specialty toy stores, I opted for the challenge of finding it myself out in the open. I almost gave up to find The Vision and the gold Iron Man when a good samaritan posted his extras on a Marvel Legends collector community page. I got them within 7 working days which was amazing considering that the items had to cross about 8,000 miles worth of land and water to reach me. But that's another story.

Right. Let's get straight into the figures. I love the window packaging. They're somewhat similar to what we've seen on the Star Wars 6" Black Series line. Great for those of you thinking to insert the figures back into their packagings for safekeeping or for re-sale...but why the heck would you wanna do that for?

As far as choice of figures go, I kinda like the mix. You get and updated versions of The Vision and Dr Strange, a gigantic woman -warrior, Valkyrie (gotta be my favourite in the wave!), a gold-black Iron Man, movie War Machine and an obscure 90s Iron Man villain (I'm always up for new characters you know!)

1)Marvel NOW The Vision

I truly feel that my Toybiz era Vision still holds up today. Nothing against this latest version of the Wanda-loving android but I somehow prefer the classic look and colour scheme. Those who like metallic looking suits will take a liking to this figure almost immediately. You could say that I would not have picked this up hadn't it been for the much needed torso BAF part as I am quite content with my Toybiz figure. I think I would've preferred to have a 'movie' Vision instead but that's just me.

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave


2)Marvel NOW Dr Strange

If there's one thing about Dr Strange is that many prefer to have him in his classic garb as opposed to the modern metallic look of the suit. Nothing much you can do about it since the corporate execs at Hasbro have decided against it. The good news is that he also comes with two magic effects that you can gleefully place on each hands to mimick his spell casting mode. We've seen this particular effect accessories before with Scarlet Witch though those were red instead of the lime green that came with Dr Strange. He looks good amongst the modern Avengers line-up but I still prefer my Toybiz Dr Strange when it comes to display options. Nevertheless I'm happy to have a modern Dr Strange in my collection.


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave


For kicks, here is the modern Dr Strange with the cape from the Toybiz version. I think he looks pretty awesome!! 
Doncha' think?

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

3)Thundra

Ok. Truth be told. I know nuts about the character. I know that Hasbro was supposed to produce a figure of her daughter (Lyra or Lycra....or something?). I didn't give much attention to the Kazaa/Shanna characters and I can see Thundra here falling into the same category...*shucks*. It's great to have a giant lady for the shelf but I think I'm much more familiar with Giganta from DC Comics than this female behemoth. Again, this figure would not have ended in my collection had it not been for the BAF part.


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave


4) Valkyrie

I've always wanted a Valkyrie figure since I laid  my eyes on the Hulk-Valkyrie 2-pack some years ago. That Valkyrie was a bit small in size and many collectors were left fuming that the figure wasn't that imposing enough to justify her Asgardian goddess stature. It was nice of Hasbro to give us Valkyrie 2.0. I like her sharp face sculpt. It makes people think twice about crossing her. She also now has a bigger body buck and should stand in nicely in between your Thor and Odin figures. Can we also get a Sif next perhaps?


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave



5) Marvel NOW Iron Man

So gold-black isn't everybody's cup of tea, I know. Some even dissed this Iron Man figure as the worst in the Hulkbuster wave. Really?  Because I think the gold and black breaks the monotoneous repetitive red/gold color schemes present in almost every Iron Man suit there is. A welcome addition to my Iron Man hall of armour. Now if I can just find a Tony Stark head sculpt...


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave



6) Movie War Machine

This one's straight from the Age of Ultron movie. For the love of God, I can't even tell the difference between this one and the first action figure from Iron Man:2. But the real winner of this War Machines the extra head that depicts a half-opened helmet with the headsculpt of Don Cheadle as Rhodey. So that's 2 movie War Machines thus far. What about movie Falcon or Vision eh Hasbro?


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave



7) Blizzard

This action figure will surely invoke memories of reading Iron Man comics in the 90s. The 90s gave us heaps of colorful and flamboyant characters so it was nice of Hasbro to produce them for us albeit slowly. This super simple action figure (heck he doesn't come with any accessories) will add a zest of blue/white onto your display shelf ao whatever you might think of him, he will pop out on your shelves. I am personally looking forward to more obscure characters from the ML line.

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave



And here's the BAF......Hulkbuster!!!


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

I've blogged about my successful custom paint job earlier. So what you're seeing here is the 'pimped' up version of the BAF Hulkbuster rather than that bland plasticky looking toy.

May I just gently remind everyone that this Hulkbuster is based on the 2nd Avengers movie and not the comics. I had to say this because apparently some idiot had written how different this toy is from the ones which appeared in the comic pages. Glad we got this issue out of the way.


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

The sheer size and weight of the Hulkbuster alone is worth the money you splashed for the seven figures for the BAF parts.  One might encounter a minor problem while assembling the torso part onto the upper body part (the squarish connector seemed a bit mis-aligned....but several forced turns later I was good to go!). Once you get over this minor glitch, assembling the rest of the parts is a walk in the park.


Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

The Hulkbuster is pretty well articulated for a large figure. You can pose him in almost every imaginable position that you can think of. Almost. You mileage may vary. The joints are tight and should endure the most gruesome articulation tests you may perform on him.

One thing I miss from the old Toybiz ML Hulkbuster figure is the open hatch/helmet feature. You get to see Tony's head protruding at top of the armour when you flip his hatch/helmet to the back. I guess the sleek design and superb articulation of this new Hulkbuster more than made up for the missing feature.

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

Marvel Legends - Hulkbuster wave

I know a lot of people are eagerly waiting for the Marvel Select version of 'Buster but I was told that this ML version is better and bigger even though the MS version has a kick a** paint job. Let's wait and see. But for now let's just sit back and marvel ( pardon the pun) the beauty and  great aesthetics of the ML Hulkbuster.