Category: Conventions

Val’s Toy Chest- DC Toys at SDCC

Greetings, readers! This past weekend saw the conclusion of San Diego Comic Con and while I wasn’t there, I’ve been keeping tabs on the mountain of new announcements that have been made in toyland. There is far too much to run down in one column, so I will be sharing news with you for the next few weeks. This week, we’ll discuss the comics company nearest and dearest to my heart- DC Comics.

DC Collectibles showed off a bunch of new collectibles slated to hit sometime in 2016. I discussed the ICONS line before and DC has shown off four new additions to the line: The Joker, John Stewart Green Lantern, Firestorm and with Milestone characters returning to the DC stable, Static Shock. In their Batman: The Animated Series/New Batman Adventures line we will be treated to BTAS versions of Commissioner Gordon, Ra’s Al Ghul and my most anticipated- ZATANNA as well as a TNBA version of Etrigan the Demon who comes packed out with Klarion the Witchboy and Teekl the cat. Arrow and The Flash releases continue with the previously announced Laurel Lance/Black Canary figure that will be joined by a new season 3 Arrow figure, a Malcolm Merlyn figure that bears the visage of the handsome John Barrowman, the Reverse Flash and Heat Wave. The TV show figures are slated for a March 2016 release. DCC will continue their Designer Series with two additional Greg Capullo inspired figures of the Joker and Wonder Woman, a new Darwyn Cooke line featuring Supergirl, Batman, Harley Quinn in her roller derby look and Adam Strange as well as a Lee Bermejo line that will include Superman, Luthor, Batman and Green Lantern. DC had even more figures up their sleeve including animated Clayface, Firefly and Harley Quinn(presumably a TNBA version) as well as a Batgirl/Oracle two pack based on her appearance in “Arkham Knight.” No pictures were available of those items.

Mattel is rebranding their Multiverse line by shifting gears from 3 and 3/4″ figures into a refreshed 6″ line which features the return of the Collect and Connect figure. The first wave draws from both the comic books and TV shows and will include “Zero Year” Batman, The Joker from the recent “Endgame” storyline, the Superman of Earth 23, TV-inspired figures of The Flash, Reverse Flash and Arrow with the CNC figure being the Batman Justice Buster Armor also taken from the “Endgame” storyline. Mattel’s display featured toys from the forthcoming live-action Batman Vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice movie as well, including 6″ figures of Ben Affleck’s Batman, Henry Cavill’s Superman and Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman. Not much news was shared about the female-focused “DC Super Hero Girls,” though a website was set up with brief bios of the main players.What I’ve seen thus far makes it sound like they’ve crossed the DC women with “Monster High.”

Mezco will continue their popular 1:12 line of cloth-covered 6 inch figures with a Flash and Superman figure that join the previously available Dark Knight Returns Batman. Non-DC characters slated for the line include Space Ghost and Judge Dredd. Hot Toys announced a new version of the Adam West Batman which will come with the iconic red Batphone, and showed their Batman Returns Batman and Bruce Wayne figures. A whole bevy of statues based on various DC characters from DC Collectibles, Tweeterhead and Sideshow made their first public appearance including the Yvonne Craig Batgirl and a Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman.

As far as this week goes, we will be getting one of the last two New 52-branded figures in this week with the release of the John Stewart Green Lantern figure. This leaves the Joker as the last figure for this line before DC gears up and starts pumping out the ICONS line. We should also be getting a restock on the Green Arrow figure from this same set. In non-DC news,  Funko’s Garbage Pail Kids finally hit and we have a nice display set up in our glass case with the entire set of 12 and the Adam Bomb vinyl figure. We should also be getting a couple of the Harry Potter POPs in, including Harry himself and my favorite; Hermione Granger. Dr. Who POPs have also started to show up in-store but have been selling briskly. Recently arrived POPs still available from these series as of this writing include Severus Snape, the Adipose and the Eleventh Doctor.

On a last note, issue #2 of Black Canary is out today and I look forward to seeing where Dinah’s tour will take us and her band next.

Next week: Marvel Toy News!

 

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Val’s Toy Chest- I Love Katie Cassidy/Laurel Lance

This week in toys and general Val interests:

Everyone’s favorite green giant (no not the one on the veggie cans) makes a reappearance in Diamond Select Toys’ Marvel Select line this week as we see the Hulk as he is portrayed in this summer’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” with his new stretchy grey pants. This one should be a good one especially since the Marvel Select movie figures don’t usually last very long and have limited availability. I just heard rumors that another Marvel Select Age of Ultron figure will hit by the end of May, ask me which one when you see me in the store. Sticking with the color green, we have gotten our shipment of Gamora Hot Toys figures as of this writing she is still in stock but she probably won’t last long. She is a gorgeous piece and the costume detailing alone is worth the price of admission.

I generally have a bad track record of getting into TV shows close to the end of their first runs. I don’t know why that is, but it was true of two of my all time favorite series: Star Trek: The Next Generation and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Incoming this week is a cool new blind box series from Titan featuring the latter. I am not the biggest fan of blind boxes usually but I’ve also never wanted to collect an entire run of them before. Buffy, Willow, Faith, Giles and quite a few monsters make up this set which will also include rare variants.

One TV show that I am actually not late to the party on is Arrow. I promised at the end of last week’s column that I would write about meeting Katie Cassidy aka Laurel Lance aka Black Canary at Wizard World Philadelphia, so here goes. I always enjoy meeting my favorite celebrities at conventions or concerts or signings and have only had one bad apple, all I will say is he was no Angel. It is rare that I meet a star from a hit series that is still on the air, but that changed when I met Stephen Amell at last year’s New York Comic Con.

Wizard World Philadelphia is probably my favorite convention to go to for celebrities since I’ve met so many of them there over the years. I swore after last year that I wouldn’t go to another Wizard World event because of how they mishandled everything.Then they announced Katie and I knew I had to go.

Katie Cassidy has been on my short list for a while since she has appeared in other roles I’ve enjoyed, but getting to meet Katie Cassidy the year she has become the Black Canary and just days before the season finale is icing on the cake. All I have to say about my Katie experience is that she was a dream, she’s gorgeous and was very nice and she was signing autographs and posing for photos at her table which I always prefer to the “professional” Photo op, there’s something less staged about those. I presented Katie with a copy of last week’s Weekly Planet, explaining that it was kind of about her since she and the forthcoming DC Collectibles Black Canary figured so prominently in it, and she asked if she could keep it, hopefully she liked it. One thing about the con this year is it seems to have run smoother than previous years.Last year was a nightmare when it came to photo ops with the celebrities as the pictures took forever to print out. This year, pictures printed out instantaneously and there was a lot less drama over previous years. All in all I really enjoyed myself and I finally got a picture not only with Katie but also with Stephen Amell, who I never got a picture with last year. I wouldn’t mind meeting the other Arrow cast members in time but I am pretty well set with the two lead actors.

I could keep gushing about how beautiful and wonderful Katie Cassidy was but I will just leave you with this:

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New York Comic-Con 2013 Tickets on Sale at Forbidden Planet NYC Monday August 12th at 7pm

Forbidden Planet NYCC tickets 2013We’ve been promising a formal announcement for weeks now, and here it is… Forbidden Planet will begin selling tickets to New York Comic-Con 2013 on Monday, August 12th at 7pm.

Friday tickets- $40

Saturday tickets- $50 SOLD OUT

Sunday tickets- $40

3-Day tickets (Fri, Sat, Sun)- $65 SOLD OUT

Kids Day child ticket (valid only for ages 6-12 for Sunday 10am-5pm)*- $5
*Kids Day tickets can only be purchased with the purchase of an Adult Sunday ticket or or 3-Day ticket.

PLEASE NOTE

  • We will be limiting 3-Day tickets to 4 per customer. All other tickets will be limited to 6 per customer.
  • All tickets are subject to sales tax.
  • We cannot reserve any tickets in advance.
  • All sales are final.  No exchanges or refunds.
  • NYCC tickets may only be purchased from Forbidden Planet in-store.  No phone or mail orders can be accepted.

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TRY SOMETHING NEW Chapter 13: To Destroy An Entire Planet!

I am in Seattle for Emerald City Comic Con as I write this. ECCC is the beginning of the 9 months the comics industry affectionately refers to as “Con Season.” 9 month seasons. Not so bright. Comics Industry- ok at making comics, less ok at everything else. Anyway, I flew in on the Forbidden Planet jet on Thursday night. Not the nicest private jet I have ever been on but that’s alright. I was just happy the doors closed all the way and the heat worked.

So after 4 days of intensive comics immersion in the form of announcements, chatting, gossip, snooping, and spying, what have I found out for you all? Comics people really like donuts and beer. I tried to find out other stuff but that’s all anyone really talks about. There was some cool stuff though. I saw a guy cosplay as Leeloo Multipass and that made me question my sexuality and vomit in my mouth at the same time. I saw a a bar fight where one man choked another man for 2 minutes and then both walked away like nothing happened. James Robinson called me Patrick for no discernible reason. I found out if you put Adventure Time on stuff you can probably take Scrooge McDuck style money baths. Someone who clearly doesn’t have parents or friends thought it was a good idea to cosplay as Geordi LaForge in blackface. I guess maybe some of the comic writers and artists are doing new books or redoing old books or something. I wasn’t paying attention to that. I am pretty sure there are comics planned through at least June of this year. After that, who knows?

But let’s talk about this week. Since I’ve been around a ton of comics all weekend and I’ve decided I really like ’em I am going to TRY SOMETHING NEW. In an attempt to trick you into buying more stuff and save me the effort of thinking up more jokes, we are going to do this rapid fire style. I am going to call out some books than usual that are good, write a sentence or two, and you are going to buy them. Simple and elegant. GO!

REPTILE MUSEUM #1 & #2. Only issue #2 of Reptile Museum just came out, but consulting my trusty comput-o-tron tells me that it is statistically impossible that you read issue #1 so I will review both right now. Published by Ray Ray Books which, for all I know, is either a dude in his parents basement or a division of Newscorp, Reptile Museum is what we call an indie, mini, or self-published comic. This is annoying because technically everything but Marvel and DC are “indie” so that word is meaningless. Sometimes minis are huge so that word is meaningless. And like I said before, I have no idea if Cody Pickrodt published this or Rupert Murdoch, so self-published is a difficult label to use. Either way, Reptile Museum is great. A clever post apocalyptic story that answers questions and creates them at an equal rate. Two issues in and I have no real grasp of the world at all and I love that. A unique dystopian tale, Reptile Museum spends much more time on it’s characters than it does explaining it’s world. We follow as a character reenters the folds of a mysterious organization and shows himself to be a true badass. That’s really it. But it’s great. This is a huge story scaled down and made small and personal. Mysterious and exciting, this book is well worth your support. Buy it now because you may not easily get another chance.

ALL-STAR WESTERN vol.2- WAR OF LORDS AND OWLS. DC’s most consistently great book is All-Star Western. Jonah Hex is a brilliant character, Palmiotti & Gray handle him in a way that makes it almost impossible not to love and loathe him. Someone at editorial decided to make a book that takes place in the 1880’s cross over with Batman and it isn’t horrible and stupid, it’s actually quite fun. The art is great. It’s one of 3 westerns on store shelves. Go buy it.

SLEEPER Omnibus. Ed Brubaker does superhero crime noir comics. A deep cover superhero begins to lose his identity. Do you like stuff like The Departed, Infernal Affairs, or Donnie Brasco? Well this is better. $75 gets you 2 volumes of Sleeper, the Point Blank prequel, and a ton of bonus stuff. There isn’t much more that I can say other than fans of crime, superhero, great writing, or beautiful art must own these books.

Grant Morrison writes 50% crazy nonsense that is almost impenetrable. Then he writes 50% next level brilliance that is untouchable, fun and smart. Sean Murphy is one of the best artists in comics today. They teemed up on JOE THE BARBARIAN to tell the story of a little boy getting lost in his own fantastical mind. It is the best thing either of them has done in many years. These are the best guys in the business doing their best work. Buy the paperback version out this week and lock yourself in a room so you can read though it a few times.

I don’t care about the Rocketeer. Jennifer Connelly isn’t in the comics so 12 year old me doesn’t make adult me buy them. But then Mark Waid goes and does his thing of taking old things, getting rid of the excess, and making them fun again. Then Chris Samnee comes in and does his thing of making comics that are so pretty they make everything else seem like ugly, busy, squiggles. Both men make ROCKETEER: CARGO OF DOOM a must own book for fans of pulp stuff or inventive ways to make action heroes feel fresh and familiar at the same time.

I just want to run the copy for LOST VEGAS #1 because either they have my sense of humor exactly and the notes to the editor are brilliantly funny OR someone really didn’t do their job. Either way Jim McCann and Janet Lee made RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN which is probably the most brilliant kids book in recent memory. Lost Vegas isn’t a kids book but it looks like it might be as brilliant. So, without further ado, the weird solicitation text for LOST VEGAS #1- The EISNER AWARD-WINNING team of JIM McCANN?& JANET LEE reunite to create a universe filled with intrigue as one gambler-turned-slave has 24 hours to go all in and pull off the greatest heist the universe has seen. (in this next section, can it be like a brochure, like a different font? If not, italics is cool) WELCOME TO LOST VEGAS! Aboard this luxurious casino-filled traveling space-station you will find the highest stakes games from every corner of every planet, unheard-of winnings, and the greatest attractions anywhere!* (Can the below section be a smaller font size?)*the fine print- those who bet it all and lose must work it off as indentured servants to the casino. Escape is not possible. No one is exempt from these rules.

Joe Casey is a great writer. He can do almost anything with style, heart, and humor. None of that matters because his new Image series is called SEX. He wins. SEX #1 is on shelves now. Buying any other comic instead of SEX makes you look stupid.

Cullen Bunn may be getting famous for his work over at Marvel but if there were any justice in the world he would already have been famous for his brilliant western series SIXTH GUN. He returns with a new series called HELHEIM launching this week. Vikings, the undead, gods, and monsters come together in what may be the most fun book of the year. I was lucky enough to see Joëlle Jones art for HELHEIM #1 this weekend and it is quite clear that Ms. Jones has just launched herself into the top tier of comic artists working today. With an art style that falls somewhere between Luther Strode‘s Tradd Moore and B.P.R.D.’s Tyler Crook but feels completely fresh at the same time, this book is painfully beautiful, which is what you want when you are dealing with swordsfights and beheadings.

I seem to do it every week so here I go to do it again. ARCHER & ARMSTRONG Vol 1 MICHAELANGELO CODE is out now. The Valiant relaunch books are great. Archer & Armstrong is buddy cop stuff done pitch perfect. A “struggling with his faith” teenager and a perpetual screw-up immortal are forced to work together to save the world from a problem that is both somewhat their doing. This isn’t life changing stuff, but it is the kind of comic you might fall in love with. This is super hero stuff that feels fresh. This trade is $9.99. If you read superhero books and someone as smart as me tells you that some of the best new ones are only $9.99 for volume #1 you really should buy it. Valiant are leaving cash on the table in order to offer books like this at “TRY ME!” prices. They believe in their books that much, and that should be enough for you.

OK, I wrote the last 2 paragraphs while snoring. I am going to go to sleep and regret not cosplaying as Spoonman or Niles Crane.

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Somewhere Around The Number Ten Best Comics That Nobody Told You About

Part 1:

I love Chris Ware. Bit redundant to say so this holiday season with everyone and their sister buying Building Stories, but with so much comic awesomeness that happened in 2012; between Charles Burn’s second installment to his X’ed Out trilogy, The Hive, and Brian K. Vaughn’s SagaSAGA… It’s too easy for amazing comics to get lost in the stacks, so I’m here to give my somewhere around the number 10 best comics of 2012 that nobody told you about…

LOSE #4

Michael DeForge might be the most prolific cartoonist working right now. He pumps more work and at a higher quality that would make any other cartoonist want to quit, or work harder…..no quit thats the correct response. On top of Lose #4 this year you can also see his work in the pages of Adventure Time comics, where he does the backgrounds,variant covers, anthology stories in  Nobrow 7 (more on that in a bit) and the newest  KUS, not to mention his on going serial Ant Comics, oh and his porn comic that he designs that features work by Johnny Negron, Brandon Graham, and Jillian Tamaki….more on all of them latter too…Bottom line, DeForge has a hand in everything and you’re probably a fan of his already, so read Lose, or Ant comics, or KUS, or Nobrow, or one of the million other things he worked on this year. King of comics 2012 goes to DeForge, no contest.

The Underwater Welder

Did I mention that DeForge is Canadian? Canadians….must be a universal sigh when cartoonist’s who aren’t Canadian talk about them. Jeff Lemire is another cartoonist hailing from The Great White North. Lemire had a full year of releases with Sweet Tooth Volume 4 and 5, the reprinting of his Xeric grant book Lost Dogs and Underwater Welder. Underwater Welder is for lovers of well paced, clear story telling, and the Twilight Zone. Lemire has an economy to his comics, the art is quick yet purposeful in the same manner as the writing, which rewards the reader with a world that they can envelope themselves in. Lemire is an odd school of cartooning, he’s not so deep into independent styled comics as DeForge, but he isn’t mainstream either (though he does write the only two books at DC still worth reading Animal Man, & Frankenstein Agent of Shade ). He’s a cartoonist in love with genre but doesn’t mistake comics to be only that.

Nipper Volume 3

Nipper Volume 3 finally came out! WOOOOOOO! I might be the only American to love Nipper so go buy it and prove my gross presumption wrong. Keeping in theme with brilliant Canadian cartoonists, Nipper volume 3 is the Canadian version of Family Circus, if Family Circus was anything like a real family and not so adorable that even your grandmother finds it lame. Always silent, black and white line work with one beautiful saturation of red dropped into each panel, Doug Wright creates multi-layered story telling, in the most simple yet still incredible complicated drawing. Just go look already, and then come meet me for coffee to talk about it, I’ll be here till next year trying to describe why it’s so effffffing smart.

Diary Comics 4

Dustin Harbin is yet another broken hearted cartoonist, upset that his nationality isn’t Canadian. Diary Comics 4 starts with Dustin talking about how amazing it is to be in attendance at the Doug Wright rewards (the Canadian version of the Eisners), and how he wishes we as American could take comics as seriously as they do. Why can’t we folks? Dustin’s beautifully minimalist drawings deceive readers with their simplicity, when they are really just the right amount of information needed, each mark done with purpose in mind and simply decroative. Go read em’ they’re good. And if your not a fan of memoir, you just like the punching and kicking comics, he did letter Casanova sooo…..I don’t know Matt Fraction wrote Iron Man for like a century right? See the full picture of creators not just the characters you like….

Pope Hat #3

Pope Hat #3 by Ethan Rilly. Rilly is surprise surprise, another Canadian. Pope Hats is technically 3 issues deep but you really only need/want two and three. In Pope Hats Rilly tells the story of Franny, a young law clerk at a massive law firm, picture Wall Street with less Charlie Sheen….okay no Charlie Sheen, just that one part where he gets punched in the face by Michael Douglas… Rilly drawings show traces of his influences but they don’t unhinge the story. You can see traces of Doug Wright’s drapery in the clothing, and bits of Shultz popping up in the rendering of grass and clouds. It’s like a love letter to days past when cartooning was a profession and getting a weekly strip in a newspaper was the dream. Pope Hats narrative shares a similar tone of nostalgia with its drawing, that bitter sweet pain, from an old wound.

Thats the end of Part 1. Part 2 on Sunday 12/23/12.

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ADVENTURE!

There’s just too much comics news to keep up with. I’m still trying to unravel threads from the NYCC, and the next thing I learn is I missed out on news from the SDCC! Did you know that Oni Comics is going to collect Scott C.’s AMAZING webcomic Double Fine Action Comics, starting in April of 2013? And they’re also going to be printing R. Stevens’ Diesel Sweeties? YOU KNEW? Why doesn’t anybody tell me?!

Still, this makes perfect sense. Sometimes trends can only be identified in hindsight, and sometimes we are walking in the middle of a trend and cannot see the forest for the trees. Double Fine Action Comics falls right into the very modern trend of Adventure!

SUPER ADVENTURE

In the Adventure genre, archetypal characters have never-ending, fantastic adventures across genre lines. These characters often become blasé about the mind-blowing nature of their deeds and accomplishments.

Obviously, the clearest example is the cartoon show Adventure Time, which also has a spectacular comic book out this week. Adventure Time #9 captures this spirit well, and is almost as awesome as the show… I say almost because it is a pretty awesome show to have to try and out-awesome.

Another book on the shelves this week that does a fine job with this concept is Shaolin Cowboy Adventure Magazine, a pulp mag printing stirring prose with illustrations from today’s top talents all centered around heart-stomping ADVENTURE!

After their success with The Matrix movies, the Wachowskis a.k.a. Andy and Lana Wachowski funded a small comic book label which printed some dang fine comics. One of these was Shaolin Cowboy, written and drawn (as only he can) by Matrix concept designer Geof Darrow.

Darrow is a master, plain and simple, layering ultra-violence with ridiculous minute detail. In his robot smash-‘em-up epic, The Big Guy and Rusty the Boy Robot, he will depict the nastiest, snarling monster-punching in a building and find a way to render every re-bar, every eviscerated victim and every pigeon flying off of the collapsing roof of said condemned structure.

Shaolin Cowboy was nuts, one of the most bizarre and intense action comics of all time. In Shaolin Cowboy, a silent Asian in flannel shirt and sandals wields twin katanas as he slices his way through countless thugs. These slay-rides are usually narrated by his talking mule.

What makes these books particularly mind-blowing is the characters. In Shaolin Cowboy, the cowboy might easily kill 50-100 flunky thugs in one issue, yet each and every single one of them will be uniquely rendered with their own peculiar dress code, grooming habits and quirks.

“UNKIEDEV, have you been sniffing white-out out of a corpse’s navel? ADVENTURE as a genre?” you may ask. “How is this different from this week’s Avengers #32, Amazing Spider-Man #696 or Superman #13?”

The biggest difference is setting. These stories almost always take place in alternate worlds, post-apocalyptic futures or featureless landscapes unrecognizable as our own.

NEXT WEEK: We’ll learn more about the new VS genre. Until then, go buy Superman #13… someone dies in it!

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More musings from Unkiedev, Earth’s own sidekick, can be read at unkiedev.blogspot.com

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NYCC 2012 Recap/Denial of how much $$ was spent over the course of 4 days

NYCC was a thing that has happened! To about 116,000 people if the numbers are correct. That is a lot of people! Like 9,000 short of SDCC a lot!  But very few of them write for FPNYC. Which explains why you’re all stuck listening to my story.

Despite the construction going on….everywhere in and around the Javitis, and the insane crowds of people (which to be honest, is nothing new for NYCC Saturdays) there on the weekend, I had a blast at NYCC once again. I got to check out some awesome new games coming out over the next couple of months, look at the various action figure prototypes scattered across the exhibitor’s hall (No sign of Hasbro, but Square-Enix had a ton of dope toys on display, varying in degrees of want), hit up a few panels, did some cosplaying, and spent a ton of time in the awesome “new” Artist Alley, talking up creators. To namedrop some names (because I can dammit!), I got sketches from Jarrett Williams (Super Pro KO), Katie Cook (Gronk, AvX Vs, the upcoming My Little Ponies series), signatures from the likes of Chris Claremont (A ton of X-men books), Kieron Gillien (Phonograms, Journey into Mystery) and Rick Remender (Uncanny X-Force, Uncanny Avengers). In addition to usual swag I pick up, this year I actually dropped some cash and got myself a commission from Ryan Ottley (Invincible) of my favorite X-woman Emma Frost, and he was cool enough to throw in a sketch of Mark Grayson himself. Oh and I had a run in with Stan Lee, which lead to an interesting article on Bleeding Cool (http://www.bleedingcool.com/2012/10/16/getting-stan-lee-a-chair-a-confession-from-nyc/).

If you’ve never been to NYCC, I severely recommend hitting up NYCC next year, which is almost a San Diego Comic Con-sized event, only one where comics still matter (but the weather is slightly worse and there’s no hotels/food place near by). Even if Chevy and Craftsman have booths there. Any day but Saturday is a good day to go, unless you’re really into panels involving TV and movies. That seems to be the big day for those sorts of announcements.

With NYCC passed and no big shows until 2012, it’s time to shift the focus back onto toys. For now at least, I’m capitable of going off on tangents at any given time. A new release we got in recently is the 3 wave of the “new” Marvel Universe line, which seems massive, because it’s chock full of variants and repaints. USAgent is a repainted Bucky Cap from Wave 1. X-Force Deadpool is a mass re-released of a rare Toy’s R Us exclusive Deadpool figures from 2 years back. Characters like Punisher and Danii Moonstar has body variants with Mystique and Blade, who come with different weapons and head sculpts. The Doctor Doom figure is mostly new, but comes with a Future Foundation  influence repaint. Iron Man (not sure which version of the Armor it is, the Googles say it’s Neo-Classic. No idea what that means)  seems to be an all new figure, and the only one that doesn’t come with a variant or is a pre-existing repaint. The trade off is that he also doesn’t come with any accessories, which is beat.

Hasbro managed to turn a 6 figure set into an 8 figure one (not counting the variant Deadpool and Doom figures), with some clever repaints. It’s kind of a dick move, but at least we’re getting some love for the more obscure characters. I’m referring to Moonstar BTW, certainly not Iron Man. But yeah, they go for $22 a pop so if you want em, come get em!

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Comic Books!

New York Comic Con, like a vestigial tail, is now behind us. Maybe you were one of the lucky ones on the Con floor and know firsthand of the amazing announcements, projects and previews which just went down. I’ve heard the Evil Dead remake footage was impressive. I hear both Brian Michael Bendis and Iron Man will be joining Guardians of the Galaxy, that Dan Slott is changing Spider-Man for 2013, that the ATMs didn’t work, that the cosplay was top-notch and the LEGO was cool.

Above all else, the biggest stories, surprises and revelations were almost all Comic BOOK based. SDCC is great, but SDCC is to comics as Playboy is to articles. The New York Comic Con remains a very hands-on, fans-on comic book show.

HOW ‘BOUT COMICS?

This week, DC is launching their new “The Cheetah” super-villainess in Justice League #13. Traditionally, The Cheetah has been a crazy lady who dresses up in a catsuit and harasses Wonder Woman due to her being empowered by Jungle Cat Gods or some such. In the new 52, The Cheetah is poised to get a real chance at iconic super villain stardom!

I think the new angle is that The Cheetah is an empowered Amazon, much like Wonder Woman herself, but that she was pushed off of a building by Christopher Walken and was brought back to life by cats.

Sounds strange, I know… No stranger, however, than The Zaucer of Zilk #1, a weird new Image book with some British talents behind it. Image is still one of the best creator-owned American comics publishers, so it is no surprise that some UK talents would take advantage of the free atmosphere to work out a book that sounds completely bonkers.

The Zaucer of Zilk centers around a wizard traveling through realities with his assistants trying to save multiple realities, but with a bunch of “Zs” thrown in for extra weirdness. It all comes off as a tribute to the classic Dr. Strange tales of the ‘60s. SOUNDS GOOD!

Speaking of nostalgia, Image is also hoping you’ll take a ride on a Cyberforce reboot. Once Image’s top seller, Cyberforce harkens back to a time when it was cool to have a team whose superpowers included “having as much metal on your costume as super-humanly possible” and “whatever the X-Men are doing, only more extreme.” AH, the ‘90s!

It’s getting hard to tell what is happening between the lines of publisher, online publisher, digital comics and print comics. This reboot of a once-huge Image comic was funded by fan donations through Kickstarter to Silvestri’s “Top Cow” studio. Image is acting as printer and distributor for a comic funded through the internet, famous ‘cause of print.

SWEET WEEK

Boy, there sure are some great books out this week! IDW has the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Annual 2012 #1, which achieves “Must Have” status in my book as it’ll be written and drawn by Kevin Eastman. Fans of the AVENGERS movie will want to check out THANOS Son of Titan #1 (or just go buy any of the many copies of Infinity Gauntlet available at Forbidden Planet) in order to get an idea of who that purple alien guy at the end of the movie was.

AND let’s all have a good chuckle with those wacky funsters, the Marvel Zombies, in the sure-to-be-classic holiday one-shot, the Marvel Zombies Halloween Special #1! Yay!

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More musings from Unkiedev, Earth’s own sidekick, can be read at unkiedev.blogspot.com

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MORE NYCC!

The New York Comic Con is BACK, ushering in the reminder that New York is the center of the publishing world. The NYCC has the BEST artists’ alley, the best small press books and the best collection of Yankees hats of any comic book con on Earth.

You do know that I, Unkiedev, am a psychic man with vast knowledge of the future. Would you like me to highlight a few super spiffy revelations coming out of NYCC BEFORE the actual event?

Let’s do this! Revealing the future Op, Op, Op, Op, Gangnam Style!

IDW will announce a HUGE January crossover between some of their biggest licensed properties and Mars Attacks! Everybody’s favorite dog-kicking dome heads will be taking on the Transformers, the Ghostbusters, Popeye, KISS (of all people) and the Zombies Vs. Robots universes. THIS WILL BE GOOD.

One does wonder why they will not be taking on GI Joe, Dr Who or Star Trek, some of IDW’s other big IPs. A personal favorite would be to see Mars Attack TANK GIRL, the punk pugilist who drinks first and asks questions never, or those heroes in a half shell, the Teenage Mutant something somethings.

‘Twould be cool. I AM looking forward to this crossover MORE than their previous cross-company events, such as the zombie invasion and Lovecraft invasions. I am HOPING Transformers will give a little bit of love to Cosmos, the green UFO Autobot who is big on heart and small on screen time.

MEANWHILE, Dark Horse will announce a new comic from Umbrella Academy creator Gerard Way and Becky Cloonan called The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys.  It looks like a thrill kill comic featuring a boy band in leather, and promises to be as ‘90s as Kurt Cobain eating a Chocodile.

THE PRESENT

Still, Forbidden Planet will be a pretty cool place during the con, too! DC picked the right week to publish Batman #13, as this latest issue of the Caped Crusader’s exploits features the Joker returning to Gotham in his New 52 debut! Get your copy at the Planet and suspiciously leave it half hanging out of your book bag as you walk the con floor. Folks will be able to tell you are a discerning comics buyer of unimpeachable taste.

Dark Horse has a huge new anthology comic called Once Upon a Time Machine, which looks super good and will be featuring new work from Brandon Graham of King City fame…but anthologies can be hit or miss. Let’s get the buzz from the con floor and then pick this one up!

I’ll have to think about it…I mean, I might need that money to buy all the variant covers to the new Red She-Hulk and Uncanny Avengers books hitting the shelves this week!

THIS WEEK IS GOING TO BE A BLAST for comic fans, both at the NYCC and outside looking in! Be here at Forbidden Planet for anything and absolutely everything comics-related!

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More musings from Unkiedev, Earth’s own sidekick, can be read at unkiedev.blogspot.com

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Unkiedev’s Amazing Stuff: NYCC Edition!

NEW YORK COMIC CON EDITION!

The New York Comic Con is NEXT WEEKEND, Thursday October 11th through the 14th, and once again it is completely sold out. I’m not going, and possibly you aren’t either. *Sigh* So now what do we do?

Here is a quick list of THE TOP TEN COMIC-RELATED THINGS TO DO WHEN YOU CAN’T GET INTO THE NYCC: 2012 EDITION!

10. Write and Draw Your Own Comics! That’s what this is all about, right? Create some great stuff and you’ll be guaranteed a place of honor at next year’s con… That gives you a whole year to develop amazing new books and get them published by a major company.

May I suggest a comic about a talking donut? I’m looking at the market and I ain’t seeing any talking donut comics.

9. Read Some Comics! OH YEAH, that’s what it is really all about! Plus, reading comics will help get you inspired for writing and drawing your own books, guaranteeing you a place in the show next year. This is a phenomenally helpful list, and you are welcome.

Marvel’s AVX #12 is out this week: that is sure to give you some inspiration. Heck, Forbidden Planet is FULL of awesome stuff, just walk in and hand us your money. We’ll take care of you.

8. Rob a Bank. This one seems weird, but it is required for the next two steps. READ ON:

7. Open Your Own Publishing Company. SEE?! I told’cha that bank money would come in handy. I’m thinking about it, you don’t need to write and draw your own comic books. With a big wad of mazzoolah, you can hire the same big names that are going to be AT the NYCC to work on your books for you. You’d like The Amazing Talking Donut written by Brian Michael Bendis and drawn by Jim Lee, wouldn’t you?

The best part is? Today’s top-tiered creators and visionaries can’t point and laugh at you from inside the con if they’re on your payroll, now can they?

6. Start Your Own Movies and TV Based On Your IPs. NICE! Robert Downey, Jr. will be calling YOU up and begging to be in your latest picture. Robert Kirkman and Joss Whedon will drop whatever they’re up to to come work for you!

5. Develop Your OWN Super Powers! Aw HECK YEAH! This is the best idea yet! Just hang out around some radioactive animals, or invent a flawed teleporter and you will be on the path to super-powered glory. Action Comics #13 is out from DC this week: why not have your parents rocket you to another planet when you were a baby? That worked out great for Superman, it could be a winner for you.

4. Bake Some Cookies.

3. Take Over the World. And why not? What has this puny mudball ever done for you?! With your huge entertainment industry behind you, and your stellar super powers, you will be a rich, unbeatable SUPER TYRANT! You can have Carrie Fisher, The Robot Chicken team and Steve Ellis (creator of High Moon) come to YOUR house and give you a special Comic Con. Did I mention your house will be THE WHITE HOUSE?! NOW MAKE CARRIE FISHER AND ADAM WEST FIGHT!

2. Fly to Another Planet, Take That One Over Too. BWA-HA-HAA! You can keep knocking over worlds like they were broken Weebles! Use the husks of your conquered planets to make a string of cosmic pearls to hang around the metaphorical neck of QUEEN DEATH as she escorts those who would deny you NYCC passes to the UNDERWORLD for all eternity! HA HA HA!

1. Fulfill Your Destiny, Meet and Destroy God and End All of Existence… just don’t be bitter about it.

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More musings from Unkiedev, Earth’s own sidekick, can be read at unkiedev.blogspot.com

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Chris Troy and the uneventful convention. Also toys!

So Baltimore Comic Con was this weekend, and truth be told, it was pretty uneventful, especially when compared to Heroescon or any of the bigger shows (SDCC, NYCC). To be fair though, BCC was an excuse for  the Hyatt bar to be “hopping” (that’s still acceptable slang right?) on Saturday night, as I got to talk to the likes of John Romita Jr (AvX, Kick-Ass, Amazing Spider-Man), Mark Waid (Daredevil), Reilly Brown (Cable/Deadpool, Amazing Spider-Man), Pablo Rivera (Daredevil as well), and Phil LaMar (Futurama, Justice League) among others. I also may have accidentally call Savage Dragon creator Erik Larson “David Finch”, and gotten Mark Waid to take a photo of him flipping the bird so that I could send it to a friend, because I’m five. Good times! And here, have a photo of my wife as Black Widow hanging out with awesome Carol Danvers cosplayer Bettie Bloodshed. This is literally the most exciting photo I currently have of the convention. Oh well, NYCC is next month, we have tickets available for sale. You should go because they literally have Elmo as a guest. Also because it’s a pretty great show.

(( All joking aside, BCC is a pretty great con, but coming off of C2E2 & Heroescon, I am le spoiled!)

Alright less con talk, more toy talk. I mentioned that the new wave of Marvel Universe figures are out in a previous article , so it’s probably about time  to take a closer look at the line so as to recommend what figures to look out for. This wave is a bit of a mix, as there’s some REALLY good stuff, and some… not so much. Starting off we have the Beast, which man, is so close to being the best Universe figure to date if it wasn’t for one major flaw. Beast’s arms are flimsy as hell which is a shame, considering the fact that  he has a great paintjob, amazing sculpt, and 29 points of articulation. Yeah 29, meaning he’s more poseable than most Legends/DC Classic figures. Considering Hank clocks in at 4″, that says a lot. I bought him to complete my OG X-Men set, which you should too if you have any interest in the Marvel Universe line. Continue reading

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Tiny Marvels

My wife is currently in lovely Seattle, selling at PAX (Prime), and rubbing elbows with a ton of amazing video game developers and playing games that are still months away from being released. Several of my friends won’t stop tweeting how awesome of a time they are having at Dragon*Con down in Atlanta. MEANWHILE, I’m in Brooklyn, typing up a yet another 500 word article about Marvel toys. I wonder where I went wrong in life. Ah well, I will be at Baltimore Comic Con next weekend, so I got that going for me. IMMA GONNA MEET FRANK QUITELY!

My whining aside, let us start this article off by taking a look at a set of awesome new Mini-Mates previously only available at San Diego Comic Con earlier this summer. I’ve spoken highly of the line in the past, as their Marvel vs Capcom 3 series really took the line to the next level. This set, based on Uncanny X-Men’s Extinction Team  (available monthly from Marvel, and written by the very awesome Kieron Gillien), gives us 4 Minimates, 1 whom of which have never received the Mini-treatment. There’s Cyclops and the White Queen Emma Frost, both sporting their modern costumes, Collossus, now rocking his Juggernaut powers, and like I just mentioned above, the supposed mutant messiah Hope Summers. I’m a big fan of packaging, which makes these figures the 1st toys to tie into Marvel’s massive AvX (Avengers vs. X-men) summer event.

What really made me impressed with this particular set is what it offers in terms of customization on such a small scale. Emma doesn’t really offer much, but it’s a cool figure on it’s own, so I’ll let it slide. Collossus’ helmet is removable, which doesn’t sound all that impressive, but hey, he’s usually not wearing it all the time in the comics, so that counts for something. Cyclops is the set’s MVP, as you can remove his standard visor/hood to reveal a face with ruby-quartz sunglasses painted on them, and the hood can be replaced with sculpted snap-on hair. He also comes with a variant snap-on visor/hood that has a “optic blast” attached to it, which is very cool. Hope is no slouch either, as she comes with 2 guns, one that can snap onto her body, a removable tattered cloak, Cyclops’ stolen jet back, and a little stream of propulsion that doubles for a stand. My only beef with the jetpack is that Hope has to be wearing the cloak in order to wear the jet pack, and that it only works on her, and not Cyke.  Call me a bias fanboy, but it’s HIS jetpack, you think it would fit on him as well. No biggie, considering the set only runs about $20, it’s well worth the money, and definitely a good addition to anyone’s collection, Minimate fans or not.

Let me end the article by pointing out that the new line of Marvel Universe figures are now available, and man, it’s a killer roster. There’s the Beast in his Astonishing X-men get up (arguably the best figure in the wave), Beta Ray Bill, the Incredible Hulk (classic first appearance and the John Romita era Hulk that Ed McGuiness drew inspiration from), classic Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider, Kraven the Hunter, and Ultimate Spider-Man, available in both Peter Park and Miles Morales flavors. We’ll take a close look at these figures next time!

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