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REVIEW: The Littles

The Littles are tiny creatures - so tiny they are rarely seen. Only when a Little is caught, gotten, or given can we really appreciate them - we could all use a Little. So if the opportunity presents itself, Give a Little, because you never know when you're going to Get a Little!

Okoner has a new series of 2.5-inch tall rotocast vinyl figures known as The Littles. There are six different characters, each one featuring a unique sculpt. You’ve got Peace, Luck, Love, Heart Broken, Happiness, and Wisdom.

Their tagline is “Give a Little. Get a Little.” For example…”Give a Little Peace. Get a Little Peace.” To help you remember which Little you’re looking at, each vinyl figure has its name printed backwards across its chest. And since The Littles come packaged with their own little mirror (it’s the backing card with a reflective oval printed on it), it’s fairly easy to read.

The underlying shape of The Littles is simple. But each one is slightly different. Wisdom has a little hat. Peace has an arm with a hand that’s giving the peace sign. Love has one extended arm and wings. Etc. So there ends up being a lot of sculptural variety throughout the six figures.

Also, the printing/paint application is really well done. One example of this is the mouth on the Broken Heart Little. There’s an old school cartoonish look to it. All of the characters have a fun feel to them.

It seems that vinyl toys have gone the route of either designer artist sofubi releases or licensed series. So it’s nice to see an artist released line of vinyl toys that’s original.

Then you get to the price. At $4.99 each, they’re extremely affordable (especially compared to other vinyl toys out there). You can pick up the set of 6 figures for $24.99.

The Facts



The Littles
Artist: Okoner
Material: Rotocast Vinyl
Dimensions: 2.5 inches tall
Points of Articulation: Zero
Designs: Peace, Luck, Love, Heart Broken, Happiness, and Wisdom
Pricing: $4.99 each

You can pick them up at the following:

Okoner on Etsy: $4.99 each

REVIEW: December 2016 Loot Crate – Revolution

The monthly Loot Crate for December 2016 featured the theme “Revolution”. According to the Cambridge Dictionary, we’re looking at definition number one: “a sudden and great change, esp. the violent change of a system of government”. The theme has nothing to do with moving around in a circle around a central point. That might make for a dull box full of loot.

We received this Loot Crate to review from the fine folks at Loot Crate. Where you can sign up for monthly plans ranging from $11.99 to $15.99 a month (depending on the number of months you commit to).

It wasn’t until I read the Loot Crate Magazine, which comes with every Loot Crate, that I realized the crate box was designed to be an Assassin’s Creed style building. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a snapshot of the Aguilar Pop! getting ready for his leap of faith.

The Assassin’s Creed Aguilar Pop! vinyl figure is a Loot Crate Exclusive from Funko. This version shows the main character from the film posed in a crouch. Even if you didn’t see (or enjoy) the film, it’s clear this is an Assassin’s Creed figure. So just pretend he’s from one of the many games. No one will know.

Also from Assassin’s Creed is the Revolution themed pin. It features the Assassin’s Creed “Brotherhood” logo in a textured nickel look. The pin includes DLC, a digital excerpt from the new Assassin’s Creed Heresy novel.

As with every Loot Crate, you’re guaranteed a monthly t-shirt. For December, it was the Exclusive Mr. Robot fsociety tee made by Loot Crate. Mr. Robot is one of those shows that I know I should probably be watching, and would probably like if I did watch it…but for some reason I haven’t started watching it.

The Firefly Independents Patch is an exclusive patch made by QMx for Loot Crate. The design is based on the original art files from Firefly graphic designer Dylan Hay-Chapman. Perfect to put on a brown coat…or something.

This month, each Loot Crate included a pretty interesting exclusive book. The Figure Fantasy harcover book by photographer Daniel Picard is produced by Insight Editions and features incredible toy photography. While Loot Crate might have stretched the “Revolution” theme with this offering, there should be no complaining. It includes some great photos.

REVIEW: App Dudes Iron Man Smartphone Stand

Just about everyone has a smartphone nowadays. I’ve heard people debate whether or not 5th grade was too early to get a kid his or her own iPhone. And with all of these smartphones come smartphone accessories (chargers, stands, cases, etc.). And there are plenty of those available.

Toy Island has released what they call their App Dudes Smartphone Stands. Currently, there are two stands available – Iron Man and Captain America. With both being from Marvel’s Avengers license, Toy Island felt I should be a supporter of Team Iron Man for this review.

The Iron Man stand measures about 8.5 inches in height and is made of PVC plastic. It has no articulation. The stand works with the iPhone 7, 6/6S, 5/5S, SE and Samsung Galaxy S5, S6, 6 Edge smartphone models. I tested it out using the iPhone 7. Of course, if you use any sort of case, you’ll need to remove your case in order to fit the phone in the opening on the stand.

And that might be a deal breaker. I know taking off and putting on my UAG case is a royal pain in the butt. I wouldn’t want to do that every night just to charge my phone. But maybe it works a little better with a bumper case, or it’s possible that your case doesn’t take an engineering degree to remove.

The actual stand is only half of the equation. It doesn’t really work with the App Dudes app. You can download the free app from the App Store or Google Play, just search for App Dudes or Toy Island. The app allows you to choose your Character and Mode (Full Mode, Sleep Mode, Set Alarm). He speaks over 50 phrases and can speak randomly, respond to tilting, be interactive, or work as an alarm clock. You can check out some of the interactive functions in the video below.

 

A video posted by App Dudes (@appdudes) on

The nice thing is that you can download the app for free first. So, check it out and if you like it, $19.99 is pretty reasonable for a smartphone stand that doubles as a Marvel superhero. Admittedly, this will likely be more entertaining for the youngsters. But maybe you’ll be able to get them up for school in the morning if Tony Stark or Steve Rogers is yelling at them to roll out of bed.

The Facts



App Dudes Iron Man Smartphone Stand
Series: App Dudes
Manufacturer: Toy Island
Material: Plastic
Dimensions: 8.5 inches tall
Points of Articulation: Zero
Pricing: $19.99

You can pick one up at the following:

Amazon.com: $19.99

REVIEW: The Walking Dead – 1/6th Scale Rick Grimes

Threezero has made some waves with their announcement and subsequent release of 1/6th scale figures based on AMC’s hit show The Walking Dead. The first figures delivered from the license were the pair of pet zombies we first saw with Michonne. They were released way back in late 2013/early 2014.

It wasn’t until just recently that Threezero started shipping their 1/6th scale Rick Grimes collectible figure. Luckily, we were able to get our hands on one of those recently released figures, thanks to the fine folks at Threezero.

I’ll start out by saying that I watched The Walking Dead up until (semi-spoiler-alert) Beth Greene’s death storyline back in Season 5. There was nothing specifically troubling about it. It’s just that I also read the comics, and the plot of the comics outpaced (and outperformed) what they were putting out on television. I do keep up with what transpires on AMC’s version, though.

Between The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, Threezero has the licenses for two of the most talked shows on television. And their first real release from the license (I’ll classify Michonne’s pets as more of a test zombie run), is the main character Rick Grimes.

Rick, portrayed by actor Andrew Lincoln on the show, appears to be based on his look from Season 5 of The Walking Dead. The figure has a beard as well as longer wavy hair. Both are sculpted. It’s often facial hair (either the sculpt or the paint application) that can ruin a figure. Luckily for Threezero, they did an excellent job with both.

If you do a search for Rick Grimes, you’ll notice his beard is not consistent. It sometimes has a little grey in it; other times it’s predominantly grey and dirty blonde; still others, it looks like Rick found a bottle of Just For Men and dyed it all dark brown. As far as the face sculpt, I’d say it’s about 95% Andrew Lincoln. It’s a case of, from this angle he looks perfect and from that angle...I’m not so sure.

Rick’s attire is similar to what we see him wearing in Seasons 4 and 5. He’s sporting a trendy brown leather jacket with a shearling collar, blue jeans, and tan cowboy boots. It took me a few tries, but the jacket has a functioning zipper if you have tiny baby hands that can operate it.

As far as accessories, Rick includes five hands. There are relaxed, holding, and a right hand that’s sculpted for holding a gun. From Rick’s belt hangs a Colt python .357 revolver in its holster as well as a red-handled machete in its sheath. The big gun is an AKM assault rifle. I had to look online where to place the carabineer that hooks the strap at the barrel end. I’m still not sure I have it correct.

Personally, I’d arm Rick with his revolver and a machete. It seems like using a Kalashnikov to mow through the undead is just gratuitous and removes the sport from a good old zombie apocalypse slaying.

As far as pricing, the figure is listed at $164.99. That’s considerably less than other 1/6th scale figures, which seem to average above $200.00 nowadays. Threezero is consistently on the lower end of pricing, when it comes to top tier 1/6th scale figures.

But if you’re a fan of AMC’s The Wallking Dead, now’s the time to start collecting this series. Threezero just released Rick; Merle Dixon is expected to begin shipping later this year; and we’ve seen preview images of the Michonne figure that will be available for pre-order in the near future.

The Facts



1/6th Scale Rick Grimes
Series: AMC’s The Walking Dead
Manufacturer: Threezero
Authorized Likeness: Andrew Lincoln
Material: Articulated plastic figure
Dimensions: 1/6th scale (12 inches)
Outfit: Weathered faux-leather brown jacket; Tan t-shirt; Black leather belt; Weathered jeans; Tan boots
Accessories: Pair of relaxed hands; Pair of holding hands; Right hand for holding gun; Colt python .357 revolver and holster; AKM assault rifle; Red handle machete and sheath
Pricing: $164.99

You can pick one up at the following:

Sideshow Collectibles: $164.99

REVIEW: November 2016 Loot Crate – Magical

It’s a little late, but due to the holidays, we’re just now checking out the November 2016 Loot Crate (don’t you worry, the December one is nipping at its heels) we recently received from the fine Loot Crate folks.. November’s theme was “Magical”, starting with the black box with all of the various jars and potions on it. And, as with every Loot Crate, you end up with the monthly Loot Crate magazine – featuring information about everything that you receive in the crate.

One of those items is the monthly t-shirt. For November, it’s the Exclusive Fantastic Beasts Obliviator T-Shirt from Bioworld. The black and white design on a blue t-shirt is from J.K. Rowling’s recently released film – Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

There’s also an Exclusive Game of Thrones Journal from Caden Concepts. The journal features an image of Melisandre on the front and back. On the front, there’s the youthful Red Woman…the back…the old crone.

And for your reading pleasure, there’s a Loot Crate Exclusive Big Trouble In Little China/Escape From New York Comic from BOOM! Comics. Probably one of the most interesting comic book crossovers, this one sees Kurt Russell meet himself (or Snake Plissken meet Jack Burton).

A monthly pin is another mainstay in the Loot Crate. For November 2016, the Magical themed pin is the The Elder Scrolls Online Imperial Edition Collector’s Pin. The pin includes an upgrade code for The Elder Scrolls Online for PC/Mac.

Finally, the major toy in this month’s Loot Crate is the Exclusive Doctor Strange Q-Fig made by QMx. The maquette is a stylized version of Doctor Strange based on Benedict Cumberbatch’s portraying the character in the recently released Marvel Doctor Strange film.

Remember, you can pick up a monthly Loot Crate for $15.99 per month plus shipping and handling. You can also sign up for 3 month ($13.25/mo), 6 month ($12.95/mo), or 12 month ($11.95/mo) subscriptions. Each month's crate includes 4 to 6 licensed and exclusive items with over $45 in value.

REVIEW: Modarri – The Ultimate Toy Car

Thoughtfull Toys is looking to shake up the toy car world with their Modarri line. Coined “The Ultimate Toy Car”, Modarri cars are building toys that allow kids and adults to construct their desired car design from millions of possibilities and dozens of parts.

Each car is broken down into seven parts, each one being interchangeable. There are the wheels, front and rear suspension, chassis, seat, fender, hood, and metal frame. They also include a hex tool screwdriver that allows you to tear everything down and put everything back together. The cars use retained screws, so you can’t fully unscrew the screws. It’s a nice touch…since no one ever wants to be searching the floor for tiny missing screws.

The folks from Modarri were nice enough to send along a few different sets, which we’re taking a look at.

The Delux 3-Pack Set (it is spelled without the E) includes the S1, X1, and T1 designs. There are three car frames and chassis plus five hoods and fenders. There are also two suspensions per car and four wheels per car. All of these things can be swapped out using the three hex tools (each colored similar to a car). The set also comes with eight traffic cones to test your driving prowess. The Delux 3-Pack retails for $59.99.

The Delux X1 Dirt Car Set includes both the orange dirt car and blue/silver concept car hoods and fenders along with the dirt car frame and chassis. It also comes with a hex screwdriver tool that allows you to swap between the two designs. The set sells for $24.99.

And the Le Mans T1 Track Body Pack includes a hood, frame, and fenders in a purple, black and white theme. The parts are interchangeable with all of the other Modarri cars. They have several other body packs available, each one retailing for $9.99.

Currently, there are four different car designs available. There’s the S1 – Street Stinger, S2 – Street Muscle Car, T1 – Track Attack Car, and X1 – Off-Road Basher. In the photo above, you're looking at the S1, T1, and X1 from left to right. We didn’t get a chance to check out the S2 design in this review.

To drive a Modarri car, you place your finger (any finger) in the base of the driver’s seat. You then apply pressure from side to side to steer it. Think of them as a more advanced fingerboard. You need to use the same type of control with your finger and hand. Admittedly, you’ll be doing fewer tricks with the Modarri cars…but it’s still possible to do figure eights and sharp turns.

It's that unique driving experience plus the ability to mix and match and create your own custom car (they also have a DIY version) that's led to the Modarri line's overall grade. To stand out, and to do something unique, in a market or field that’s been around for decades is impressive. I’ve found these to be some of the most playable toys I’ve reviewed on the site. I had to take photos the first day the box rolled in; else my five and six year old boys wouldn’t have let me get any packaging shots.

And the appeal to the Modarri cars is two-fold. There are the unique driving capabilities. You steer with your finger in the seat and the suspension to your pressure. But there’s also the ability to swap parts and create a car that’s your own design – truly unique.

The Facts



Modarri
Manufacturer: Thoughtfull Toys
Material: Plastic with metal frame
Dimensions: About 4.5 inches long
Designs: S1 – Street Stinger; S2 – Street Muscle Car; T1 – Track Attack Car; X1 – Off-Road Basher
Accessories: Hex screwdriver tool
Pricing: Bundles range from $18.99 to $368.99

You can pick up a single car at the following (plenty of other sets and packs available):

Modarri.com: $18.99
Amazon.com: $18.99

REVIEW: WWE TeenyMates Collector Tin

The folks from The Party Animal Inc. have released several series of their popular TeenyMates figures. They’ve taken on licenses from the four major American sports leagues – the NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL. And now they’ve moved on to professional wrestling with their WWE TeenyMates line.

We received the WWE TeenyMates Collector Tin, which includes four blind bags, an exclusive glow-in-the-dark Macho Man TeenyMates figure, and a WWE Arena Display. Each blind bag includes two random figures plus two double-sided puzzle pieces. In total, you receive nine WWE TeenyMates in the Collector Tin.

While the licensed sports league figures are mainly generic characters that highlight teams rather than a specific player, the WWE TeenyMates are sculpted to look like a specific wrestler. The chosen wrestlers span the decades and include both men and women wrestlers.

Also available in singular blind bags, you could pull any of the following WWE Superstars:

Big Show; Bray Wyatt; Bret Hart; Brie Bella; Brock Lesnar; Daniel Bryan; Dean Ambrose; Dolph Ziggler; Golddust; Jey Uso; Jimmy Uso; John Cena; Kane; Kofi Kingston; Macho Man Randy Savage; Nikki Bella; Randy Orton; Roman Reigns; Seth Rollins; Shaemus; Sin Cara; Stardust; Sting; Stone Cold Steve Austin; The Rock; The Ultimate Warrior; The Undertaker; Triple H

Having watched WWE since I was a youngster, I was easily able to identify the figures I pulled. So I asked my 6-year-old son, who is an occasional wrestling viewer, and he was able to name all of the current wrestlers. My guess is that means they’ve done a pretty good job sculpting these 1-inch tall TeenyMates. And the paint application on a line of this size (they are teeny) is pretty good as well. Not much slop, nor many missed spots.

My kids always want to pick up a blind bag of NHL TeenyMates whenever we go to a Hurricanes game. So I have a bunch of them. And while I like the league-licensed figures, I think the likenesses of actual WWE wrestlers is all that more impressive. Plus, there are dozens of wrestlers they could immortalize as 1-inch tall Teenymates. And since this is labeled as Series 1, let’s hope they continue to do just that.

The Facts



WWE TeenyMates Collector Tin
Series: TeenyMates
Manufacturer: The Party Animal Inc.
Material: Plastic
Dimensions: 1-inch tall
Points of Articulation: Zero
Designs: 32 current and classic WWE wrestlers
Pricing: $19.99

To pick one up, check out the following:

LilTeammatesShop.com: $19.99
Amazon.com: $14.05

REVIEW: DataPets

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Bright Star Gifts produces a line of USB storage drives that are hidden within a plush toy. They’re called DataPets. I counted over 100 different stuffed animals that are available as DataPets, spanning generic animals and licensed characters. I was given a choice as to which DataPet I’d like to check out for this review, but as soon as my kids saw a Pokemon character – the discussion ended.

So what is a DataPet? It’s essentially a manufactured stuffed animal that’s been cut open, had a USB drive inserted within its plush nether regions, had a cord run out of said nether regions, and then been stitched back up. The plush isn’t original (you can buy them from multiple outlets) and neither is the USB device. It’s basically the process and combination of pieces that creates a DataPet.

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I was able to find approximates of the items that make up this specific DataPet on Amazon. The Pikachu in a Charizard outfit plush sells anywhere between $9 and $38 (if I were comparison shopping, I’d go with the $9 one). You can pick up a 16GB flash drive for around $6, and a 6-foot USB cable (male to female) sells for about the same $6. So, on the low end, you’d be looking at a cost of about $21 to make your own. But then you’d also need to learn how to sew.

The 16GB DataPets sell for $39.95 each. So the difference ($18.95) is basically the labor costs. Because, you could do this all yourself if you wanted to. The DataPet doesn’t have an internal speaker or load any programming onto your computer. It’s a basic flash drive.

datapets-pikachu-4

One thing my kids didn’t like was that there was a large blue USB cable hanging out of Pikachu’s butt. They wanted to know how/if they could just rip that thing out. I suggested to the folks at Bright Star Gifts about possibly offering a retractable USB cable so you wouldn’t lose the ability for the thing to still be a stuffed animal. (It’s tough to cuddle with something that looks like it’s halfway through a colonoscopy) Also, I think the blue USB cable reminds me of those standard, old Ethernet cables. Very industrial and not very inconspicuous if you’re trying to hide this within your plush toy collection. But you should probably keep your cuddling stuffed animals separate from those you’re storing those important data files on.

You can pick one up at the following: 

Bright Star Gifts: $39.95 (16GB DataPet)

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datapets-pikachu-5

REVIEW: NECA’s Bill and Ted – Wyld Stallyns Box Set

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The iconic film that made the phrase “Party on dudes!” a staple of American vernacular (at least during the early part of the 1990’s) turned 27 years old earlier this year. Yes, Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (not to be confused with Bogus Journey) is considered a modern day cult classic, but it never really experienced the collectible figure status the movie license deserved.

So, in steps NECA with their newly released Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure – Wyld Stallyns Clothed Action Figure Box Set. NECA sent us the set so we could check out the figures for this review.

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As you likely known, Bill S. Preston, Esquire and Ted “Theodore” Logan make up the Wyld Stallyns. The “band” themed set includes both figures measuring 8 inches in height and wearing fabric clothes similar to toy lines from the 1970’s. Each figure comes with his own guitar and the fingers on both Bill and Ted’s hands are sculpted to be playing a guitar chord and strumming.

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NECA went with a slightly stylized face sculpt of both Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves. They’re meant to have that retro feel to them, so that sort of plays into the theme. Each figure has multiple points of articulation (neck, arms, legs, etc) so you can pose them however you feel they would rock out.

The clothing is pretty well made. It’s sort of an odd scale, so the clothing could have gone either way. For those with questions about Bill’s outfit, Bill is wearing the clothes he had on during the school presentation. Although, the purple shirt doesn't have the printed design on it.

bill-and-teds-excellent-ad

And the packaging looks great. There’s a definite retro feel to the window-front box. Inside, there’s a cardboard phone booth that you fold and pop together. That, plus the box backing, makes for a great background (as you see, I’ve used it in these photos).

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“I am Bill S. Preston, esq.! And I am Ted Theodore Logan! Together, we are: WYLD STALLYNS!” And luckily for fans of the Wyld Stallyns, NECA has come to the rescue with this box set. While some folks might not like the stylized sculpting work, these are the best collectibles based on the film license. Hands down.

So…”Be excellent to each other. And party on dudes”

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The Facts



Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure – Wyld Stallyns Set
Manufacturer: NECA
Authorized Likeness: Alex Winter as Bill S. Preston; Keanu Reeves as Ted "Theodore" Logan
Material: Plastic articulated figures with real fabric clothes
Dimensions: 8 inches tall
Points of Articulation: Multiple points
Outfit: Bill – grey cutoff shirt, purple sweatshirt around his waist, grey pants; Ted – pink jean jacket, black vest, white shirt, black and white shorts
Accessories: Two guitars; Cardboard phone booth
Pricing: $55.99

To pick up the set, check out the following:

Amazon.com: $49.95

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REVIEW: Rick and Morty Pop! Vinyl

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I have a few Rick and Morty reviews coming up over the next week or two…so I thought I might as well start binging the show (somehow, I’d never seen an episode before). It’s definitely Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim fare, as it fits in with most of that block’s random, outlandish theme. Rick is a mad scientist inventor grandfather who lives in the same house as Morty, his somewhat clueless grandson. They often go on adventures to other dimensions…etc.

Funko has chosen to produce figures for their Pop! line based on the television series. Their Pop! Animation series, to be precise. And even though I’ve been covering Funko’s Pop! line for what feels like a decade, this is actually the first time I’ve ever reviewed one of the figures on Plastic and Plush.

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Rick and Morty come packaged individually, with Rick being #112 in the Pop! Animation line and Morty being #113. Rick’s armed with his handy flask and the accompanying green drool flowing from his mouth. Morty is sporting a pouty face and a pair of mega seeds in his hands.

The lone point of articulation on these Pop! figures is at the neck. This is standard for the platform. And when I used the term platform, I don’t mean that they all come from the same mold. They each feature a similar look, with the boxy head and the large black eyes. And it’s pretty amazing how Funko makes these figures recognizable while constrained by that look.

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For fans of Rick and Morty, the pickings are slim when it comes to collectibles. And while Funko’s Pop! line is more stylistic than realistic, it might not suit everyone. Personally, I think the figures work well. And fans of the show will be delighted to finally be able to get their hands on Rick and Morty. Wubalubadubdub…right?

The Facts



Rick and Morty Pop!
Series: Pop! Animation
Manufacturer: Funko
Material: Rotocast vinyl
Dimensions: 3.75 inches tall
Points of Articulation: 1 (neck)
Pricing: $10.99 each

To purchase one for yourself, check out the following:

Amazon.com: Rick - $9.75; Morty - $8.65

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