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REVIEW: T+CP Pocket Sideshow Series

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Background

The T+CP venture, the collaboration between Tomenosuke and Circus Posterus, has produced some of the best sofubi vinyl figures of the past few years. Among those is a new series of pocket-sized sofubi figures that go by the name - Pocket Sideshow.

The Pocket Sideshow series features four figures, with each design from a different Circus Posterus artist. There’s Otto from Brandt Peters, Penelope from Kathie Olivas, Sproot from Chris Ryniak, and Snowshoe from Amanda Louise Spayd. 

Thanks to Tomenosuke, we’ve been able to get our hands on the first Pocket Sideshow colorway. It’s soft black vinyl painted with shades of orange. Also, there’s a limited run of unpainted black figures…if that’s your thing.

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The Facts



Pocket Sideshow
Manufacturer: T+CP (Tomenosuke + Circus Posterus)
Artists: Amanda Louise Spayd, Brandt Peters, Chris Ryniak, and Kathie Olivas
Material: Sofubi (soft vinyl - Japan)
Dimensions: About 3” tall
Points of Articulation: One each (neck)
Designs: Otto (Brandt Peters); Penelope (Kathie Olivas); Sproot (Chris Ryniak); Snowshoe (Amanda Louise Spayd)
Edition Size: Painted – 100 pieces; Unpainted – 60 pieces
Pricing: ¥4,650 ($40.00) per 2-pack

Packaging

These came poly-bagged without being carded. That’s fine for me, as it’s not likely they would stay trapped in those baggy confines for very long. So there’s not much to talk about here.

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Our Opinion

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REVIEW: OYO – National Hockey League

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Background

We’re a little over one-quarter of the way through the 2014-15 National Hockey League season. It’s a season that generally runs from October into June. Since I live in a hockey town, I get out to a lot of games. But if you’ve been to a hockey game recently, you might have run into the NHL OYO Minifigures.

Featuring skaters, goalies, and Zambonis from all 30 NHL teams, OYO Sports has one of the most popular hockey collectibles. You’ll find OYO minifigures made of all of today’s top players. Heck, they even have some 3rd Line and Checking Line guys. And not only are OYOs collectibles, but they’re are also compatible with other notable building block toys such as Lego, K'nex, Mega Bloks, and more…for added playability.

For this review, OYO Sports sent along three NHL OYO Minifigures: Claude Giroux, Jordan Staal, and Cam Ward (from the newly released Goalie Series).

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The Facts



NHL OYO Minifigures
Series: National Hockey League Generation 1
Manufacturer: OYO Sports
Material: ABS Plastic
Dimensions: About 2” tall
Points of Articulation: 11 (neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, legs, and knees)
Designs: Players from all 30 NHL teams
Accessories: Skaters – Skates, Puck, Player Accurate Stick Configuration, Helmet with Removable Shield, Stand; Goalies – Leg Pads with built-in Skates, Blocker, Glove, Stick, Puck, Water Bottle, Helmet with Cage, Stand
Edition Size: Limited Edition
Pricing: Skaters - $12.99; Goalies - $14.99

Packaging

The packaging for the NHL OYO Minifigure series is similar to that of other OYO figures. It features an outer sleeve as well as a plastic tray where the figure and accessories are held.

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REVIEW: Asmus Toys’ 1/6th Scale Gothmog

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Background

When you think of the greatest film trilogies, there are several that come to mind: the original Star Wars trilogy, Toy Story, the Godfather (the first two make up for number three), The Dark Knight, the Dollars Trilogy, and The Lord of the Rings. If part of your criteria is a solid number one through three, you could do a lot worse than Peter Jackson’s take on J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic.

The Lord of the Rings toy license is still going strong over a decade after the release of The Return of the King. There are few film-related toy licenses that continue to generate that type of interest. One of the newer toy companies to take a shot at The Lord of the Rings is Asmus Toys.

Asmus, which produces 1/6th scale figures based on the license, recently released the Gothmog collectible figure. According to lotr.wikia.com, Gothmog was the lieutenant of the Witch-king in the Third Age, from Minas Morgul, notably present at the Battle of the Pelennor Fields.

The Facts



Gothmog
Series: The Lord of the Rings: Heroes of Middle Earth
Manufacturer: Asmus Toys
Material: Articulated figure
Dimensions: 1/6th Scale (12” tall)
Points of Articulation: Over 36 points
Outfit: Full body armor; Black vest; Torn red sleeves; Pair of red pants; Brown/grey textured fur; Pair of black boots; Black Orc belt
Accessories: Right hand fist in armor; Right hand weapon holding hand in armor; Left hand Orc hand; Gondorian solider corpse; Spike mace; Orc sword; Custom base; Asmus Toys’ figure stand
Pricing: $159.99

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REVIEW: OYO – Major League Baseball

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Background

Late October/early November means the end of the Major League Baseball season. This year, if you’re not a San Francisco Giants fan, you’re in good company with fans of the 29 other teams that can wallow in a winter of disappointement. While most baseball fans will be pining for next season, toy collectors will be glad to know that there’s an officially licensed MLB block figure line from OYO Sports.

In addition to players from all 30 Major League Baseball teams, OYO produces their mini figures based on MLB team mascots, MLB Hall of Fame players, Minor League Baseball players and MiLB mascots, and Little League Baseball version of MLB players. There are also various team themed sets available for all of the MLB teams. They include a Starter Set, Infield Set, Outfield Set, and Game Time Set.

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The Facts



MLB Generation 3 OYO Minifigures
Series: Major League Baseball Generation 3 Series 5
Manufacturer: OYO Sports
Material: ABS plastic
Dimensions: 3" tall
Points of Articulation: 11 (neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, legs, and knees)
Designs: Players from all 30 MLB teams
Accessories: Brown Bat; White Ball; Brown Glove; Primary Hat; Alternate Hat; Numbered White Home Plate Stand
Edition Size: Limited Edition
Pricing: $12.99 each

Packaging

The figures are packaged in a small, rectangular, plastic-wrapped box. There’s a small window area where you can see the OYO figure. That figure is in a tray, with separate trays for the accessories and the stand. Outside, the packaging sleeve features illustrations (one close-up and one action) of the figure on the front and back. You’ll also see the team’s logo and the back of the player’s jersey.

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REVIEW: Hot Toys’ The Lone Ranger – Tonto

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Background

In Disney's The Lone Ranger, Johnny Depp gives a standout performance as the peculiar Native American, Tonto. Despite their initial differences, Tonto has partnered with his 'Kemo Sabe', the Lone Ranger, and together they ride on an adventure to bring justice to the Old West.

Released theatrically in the United States on July 3rd 2013, The Lone Ranger was the big budget film the character had been waiting for since its inception in 1933. Teamed up with a number of collectibles for young and old alike, Hot Toys took a stab at producing a high-end 1/6th scale figure based on The Lone Ranger’s somewhat trusted pal Tonto.

Sideshow Collectibles has provided us with the Tonto figure for review purposes.

The Facts



Tonto
Series: The Lone Ranger
Manufacturer: Hot Toys
Authorized Likeness: Johnny Depp
Material: Sixth scale articulated plastic figure with fabric hair
Dimensions: 12” tall
Points of Articulation: TrueType body with over 30 points of articulation
Outfit: Crow and bandana; Black and bronze-colored tribal necklace; Brown and white tribal armband; White and bronze-colored bracelet; Bronze-colored bracelet; Faux-leather black belt; Multi-colored belt; Orange-colored belt; Brown pants with pouch and tribal decorations; Pair of brown moccasins
Accessories: Pair of fists; Pair of relaxed hands; Pair of hands for holding weapons; Left open hand for holding watch; Dagger with sheath; Two axes; Pistol; Two pocket watches; Figure stand with Tonto nameplate and The Lone Ranger logo
Pricing: $204.99

Packaging

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REVIEW: The Mythicals – Cthulhu

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Background

Toronto-based Monster Factory started a Kickstarter campaign in order to raise funds to produce The Mythicals line of handmade plush toys. The Mythicals started as a series of three characters: Spencer the Dragon, Margot the Unicorn, and Louie the Cthulhu. Thanks to hitting a number of stretch goals, they’ve added some yet-to-be-named Mythical characters: Pegasus, Yeti, and Sea Monster.

The campaign has already reached its funding goal. However, on Thursday August 14th 2014 at 11:02 AM ET, the Kickstarter run will be finished. The plush line won’t be limited to only those who back it on Kickstarter, so if you miss out, The Mythicals will be available to purchase from Monster Factory.

For this review, we were able to get our hands on one of the first Louie the Cthulhu plush toys.

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The Facts



Louie the Cthulhu
Series: The Mythicals
Manufacturer: Monster Factory
Material: Micro polar fleece
Dimensions: Approximately 10" tall
Pricing: $47.00 CAD (about $42)

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Tag

This was a pre-release version of the Cthulhu plush, which didn’t feature the swing tag. However, each Mythical plush will feature a special edition Kickstarter label and a hangtag displaying his or her name and hilarious personality. The tag will be signed by one of the creators.

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Our Opinion

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REVIEW: Jade Stars – Year of the Horse

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Background

To celebrate 2014 - the Year of the Horse – Mini Magellan has released the first of twelve limited edition plush toys from their book “Jade Stars: The Great Race”. The book is written by Charles Huang and Stacey Hirata and illustrated by Jerome Lu of Hyperactive Monkey. The Year of the Horse plush was designed by Jerome Lu and by Patty Variboa of Fat Rabbit Farm, and makes a great gift for anyone born in the Year of the Horse (1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014).

In the Chinese lunar calendar, a different animal represents each year in a 12-year cycle. People born under a particular year identify with that animal’s personality traits, strengths, weaknesses and compatibility with the other animals.

The Year of the Horse comes seventh in the Chinese zodiac and people born under this sign are talkative, cheerful and love being the life of the party.

Mini Magellan has provided us with the Year of the Horse plush for this review.

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The Facts



Year of the Horse
Series: Jade Stars
Manufacturer: Mini Magellan
Artists: Jerome Lu and Patty Variboa of Fat Rabbit Farm
Material: Plush
Dimensions: 17” tall
Accessories: The Great Race book (sold separately)
Edition Size: “Limited Edition”
Pricing: $59.99

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Tag

The mini hangtag features a pair of horse illustrations on it. On the inside, there’s information about the Year of the Horse as well as the Chinese lunar calendar (similar to what’s printed above).

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REVIEW: Monstermatic App and 3D Monster

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Background

After successfully funding their iOS app via Kickstarter, Monstermatic launched a unique iOS app that allows you – as the user - to select a pre-made animated monster or create one of your own.

You then have the option of swapping out parts, changing colors, and even drawing on the monster. The app gives you the ability to take your monster into the real world with Augmented Reality Technology. Take photos of it and share with friends via social media. You can interact with your new pal by feeding, shaking, and talking to it (it’ll repeat what you say in a chipmunk voice). There’s also a mini-game (Farting Simon) that will keep you entertained as long as a regular game of Simon probably could.

Finally, you can purchase a tangible version of your monster - sending your creation to a 3D printer at Shapeways. We ended up getting one of the pre-made animated monsters for this review. It pretty much resembles a monster ice cream cone (check out the app version below).

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The Facts



Monstermatic
Manufacturer: Shapeways
Artist: You
Material: Sandstone (3D printing)
Dimensions: about 2” tall
Points of Articulation: Zero
Pricing: $25.95

Packaging

The figure comes securely packaged in a plastic bag with lots of packing peanuts...inside of a shipping box. In other words, there was no product specific packaging. But the guy wasn't going to be broken.

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Our Opinion

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REVIEW: Hot Toys’ The Wolverine

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Background

Released in July 2013, The Wolverine is the sixth installment in the X-Men film series. The movie is based on the 1982 four issue limited comic book series from Chris Claremont (writing) and Frank Miller (pencils). In the X-Men timeline, the events of The Wolverine follow X-Men: The Last Stand, with Wolverine traveling to Japan to visit and old friend. Like the previous (and subsequent) films, it features Hugh Jackman in the role of Wolverine.

With Hot Toys having the license to produce sixth-scale collectibles based on various Marvel films, it was a given that they’d provide collectors their third Wolverine figure from the company. The figure from The Wolverine follows versions of the character from X Men Origins: Wolverine and X-Men: The Last Stand, and is graced with a brand new head sculpt.

Thankfully, Sideshow Collectibles has provided us with this piece to review.

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The Facts



The Wolverine Sixth Scale Figure
Series: Movie Masterpiece Series
Manufacturer: Hot Toys
Authorized Likeness: Hugh Jackman as Wolverine
Material: Plastic articulated figure
Dimensions: Sixth Scale
Points of Articulation: Over 30 points
Outfit: Outfit 1 - Black blazer; Black coat; Black shirt; Black tie; Black pants; Black belt; Black socks; Black shoes. Outfit 2 – White wife-beater; Grey jeans; Grey belt; Brown boots.
Accessories: Pair of fists with metal claws; Pair of fists with bone claws; Pair of fists; Pair of hands for holding sword; Engraved metal Japanese sword with sheath; Figure stand with Wolverine nameplate and movie logo
Pricing: $224.99

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REVIEW: AJ’s Toy Boarders – Surf Series 1

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Background

To date, AJ’s Toy Boarders has released four series of their namesake figures. Following the release of two series of Skateboard figures and one Snowboard series, they’ve dropped yet another board-based – Surf Boarders.

The Toy Boarders – Surf Series 1 is similar to the previous three. There are eight different designs, featuring different characters in different surfing positions, and each bag contains a total of twenty-four figures – three of each design. And they have all been produced with that same little green army men aura.

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The Facts



AJ’s Toy Boarders Surf Series 1
Series: Surf Series 1
Manufacturer: Alfa-Row Inc.
Material: Injection Molded Plastic
Dimensions: Around 2” tall
Points of Articulation: Zero
Designs: Cruiser, Drop In, Lay Back, Nose Ride, Pig Dog, Slash, Tube Ride, and Wahine
Pricing: $5.95 pack of 24

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Packaging

Similar to the previous Toy Boarders series, the Surf Series comes bagged with a header card. All 24 figures are displayed similar in fashion to those little green army men, and the rear of the header card features silhouettes and names of each of the eight designs.

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Our Opinion

It’s tough to write about AJ’s Toy Boarders and not mention the similarity to plastic toy soldiers – or little green army men. The rise of those little guys was thanks in part due to a lead-poisoning scare in the 1950’s. So while the WWII plastic figures took off, the once popular metal versions were less in demand.

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