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cartoon toys

Transformers Titans photo
Transformers Titans

Hasbro tasks fans with voting for the next Transformers Titan class figure

Already planning for 2017
Nov 23
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Good news: Hasbro still plans on doing Titan class Transformers in distant 2017 and they want our help deciding who to do next. They've chosen three big bots from the Transformers universe and are encouraging fans to go to Fa...
Matty Colllector photo
Buy now, regret spending too much later
Have you bought a Castle Grayskull yet? No? Good thing you waited, because you can now get it for US$150 ***WITH*** free shipping! (The only way you could beat those savings would be at a Big Lots!). The savings train doesn't...

Masterpiece Ratchet photo
The doctor arrives in April
When Takara Tomy announced Transformers Masterpiece MP-27 Ironhide everyone knew that the Autobot medic Ratchet wasn't far behind. So it came as no surprise to anyone when Nippon-Yassan started taking pre-orders on the unoffi...

Masterpiece Ramjet photo
What? Why!?
Back in September 2006 Takara Tomy released MP-3 Starscream into the fledgling Transformers Masterpiece line. In the near 10 years since the figure has been repainted and retooled more than a dozen times between Takara Tomy a...

Batman photo
Did you fork over some green?
For anybody curious about the newly released Femme Fatale Poison Ivy's packaging, DST recently-ish posted some box shots. The packaging features the same basic box design as previous entries (such as Lady Death II (reviewed))...

Pop! Voltron is a thing

Oct 14 // Scarecroodle
80s photo
A thing that I badly want
Funko has released a new image for its upcoming Pop! Voltron, which is due out this December. If you lived in the 80s, you'll probably recall Voltron as being the giant robot "star" of Voltron: Defender of the Universe, a pop...

TMNT photo
Yet another toymaker jumps into TMNT
Say whaaaaaaa? Bandai may have just shocked the world (just a little) by adding the classic cartoon versions of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to the S.H. Figuarts line. Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, and Michelangelo were s...

Titans Return photo
Part two in a five year trilogy
As expected we got some major reveals for the ongoing Transformers Generations figure line at New York Comic Con! What wasn't expected is that the title of the follow up to Combiner Wars is not Titan Wars, but rather Titans R...

Masterpiece Transformers photo
But I want them now!
Takara Tomy is wasting no time getting their latest batch of Transformers Masterpiece figures into our hands. It was only a few weeks ago that we first saw Hot Rod and Shockwave on display in unfinished form, but now we've go...

Masterpiece Shockwave photo
Oh, and Hot Rod shown, too
It's happening! It's finally happening! After years of fan demand and false rumors Takara Tomy is making the emotionless Decepticon scientist and occasional leader Shockwave as an upcoming Transformers Masterpiece! At the All...

Starscream Supermode photo
Starscream Supermode

This is Starscream, he only looks like Thundercracker

Another Transformers identity crisis
Sep 11
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
In the 2014 Transformers Generations line we saw Hasbro take a step away from G1 version of popular characters and throw the Transformers Armada TV series a bone with an Armada Starscream figure. Later that year Takara would ...
Disney photo
What, don't you have a Halloween tree?
Looking for some coffin-stuffers? Funko has a new series of Nightmare Before Christmas Mystery Minis on the way as well as a Pocket Pop! Vampire Teddy. This marks the second NBC Mystery Minis series we've seen. The new figure...

DST photo
A good-looking week
Diamond Select Toys' latest batch of collectibles may be in your local comic book or specialty store right now. The assortment includes the awesome new Femme Fatales Supergirl (based on her DCAU appearance), the Nightmare Bef...

Transformers Masterpiece photo
Transformers Masterpiece

Transformers Masterpiece Ironhide gets a price and date

Not that much and not that far away
Sep 05
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Takara Tomy appears to be in a rush to get their newest announced Transformers Masterpiece figure into our hands. Only announced just over two months ago, we won't be waiting all that long for MP-27 Ironhide. If a somewh...
Transformers survey photo
Transformers survey

Hasbro UK asks what it's like being a Transformers fan in new survey

Less about toys, more about you
Aug 28
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Hasbro UK has a posted a rather interesting Transformers survey open to everyone. The survey is simply titled Modern Fan 2015 and takes a different approach in asking questions about the brand. Rather than simply asking ...
Disney photo
Probably won't turn into a plush dragon
Okay, Funko, you got me. You've released a wide mix of characters in your Fabrikations line so far, including the likes of Greedo, Rocket Racoon, and Jack Skellington, but up until now I haven't thought, "I really want this o...

Disney photo
Christmas in October
Slated to come out BEFORE Christmas, Funko has an array of Nightmare Before Christmas collectibles, a selection which notably includes TWO versions of Jack's Pumpking King costume. The first of the new items are two Pop!s, on...

My Little Pony photo
In fact, maybe even more adorable?
We Love Fine has an array of cute My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic chibis on the way. The seven ponies can be pre-ordered individually for US$15 each or in a set that also includes an exclusive Discord. The line-up consist...

SDCC 2015: MattyPalooza panel

Jul 15 // Scarecroodle
The presentation began with an apology, poking fun at the oft-mocked MattyCollector slogan, "Collectors are King." It was continued with the traditional promise that things would get better (despite continuing to use Digital River), more promises about transparency, and so on. It was topped off by a product philosophy slide which shows the aim is to do better than what could be found at retail. There was also a mention that there wouldn't be a "face" of Matty Collector going forward (which I took to mean a Scott Neitlich kind of guy) and that everybody was involved (meaning that I'm even less sure who to hassle for press info). Most importantly, the first announcement was that there's life outside the Masters of the Universe franchise. Matty announced plans to carry collectibles related to DC Comics, WWE, and Disney's Cars. They also teased the possibility of doing things from older toy lines, like Street Sharks and Dino-Riders (yes, that was a thing) should enough fan interest exist. The discussion then turned to the Masters of the Universe comics series (put out by DC). [[Editor confession: I tuned out during this part, since I read one of the demo issues and it was fairly lousy.]] There was also a mention of Masters underwear, including a She-Ra version for the girls (see gallery). Masters of the Universe characters will apparently be featured in an upcoming video game called Toy Soldiers: War Chest. It's a tower defense game that will feature various toy lines. I'm not a fan of the genre, but the casting is interesting. Dark Horse will be releasing a compilation of all of the mini-comics that came along with the figures. It's a hardcover book which will feature backstories behind the stuff as well. The Sideshow statues also got a brief shout-out and there was mention of a Super 7 partnership including MUSCLE-styled He-Man figures and a Moss Man Chia Pet. We were then treated to a run-through of the schedule for the rest of the year, along with the unveil of a celebratory Point Dread and Talon Fighter set (featuring Teela 2.0) set to release in November. Also up will be a Laser Light Skeletor vs Laser Power He-Man  2-pack. Club Eternia may be over, but it's apparently being replaced by a limited "Collector's Choice" series and, most importantly, the prices are going to be going down! Before you get excited, this isn't down to the old US$20; no, it's just being dropped to US$24 (sub price) and US$27 (non-sub) for normal figures. (Now if only Digital River stopped gouging us on shipping...). The Collector's Choice will have a US$25 sign-up fee (pays for exclusive) and will feature 6 figures (at US$24) and 2 semi-annual figures (one at US$30 and another at US$40; these will cost US$5 more if buying outside the club). The figures announced thus far are Lord Masque, Vultak, Darius, Crita (!!!), General Sunder, and a Horde Wraith. While I won't be buying into the club, I'm looking forward to picking up Crita and may cave on that Horde Wraith. The sub exclusive figure will be Despera and one of the over-sized figures will be the Night Stalker. (That's one cool mechanical horse...) Power-Con is apparently returning (June 4th & 5th in LA?) and will feature some limited (ie, small run) exclusives including a green Granamyr (it's an incredibly neat item). The MOTU Minis club may have been canceled, but the series has apparently be reconfigured into a box set with that little Snake Mountain diorama. However, the biggest announcement of the day (for Masters) was a "2.0" line based on the Filmation cartoon. The reasoning for the re-launch is that it gives collectors who started late (such as myself) access to the characters while providing die-hard collectors with a new look. While the line will re-use parts from the original MotUCs, the figures won't just feature new heads. Apparently other things on the figure will be tweaked, like the style of He-Man's boots. The figures announced (and shown) thus far are He-Man, Trap-Jaw, Skeletor, and Evil Seed (not to be confused with the 200x one coming out; he's the club exclusive). Other announced figures included Beast Man, Evil-Lyn, and Clawful. The line will feature new packaging which looks pretty neat (see gallery). Mattel picked up Mega Bloks not that long ago and apparently one of the results will be a Castle Grayskull set. There was a whole video promo for it as well which showed that it will feature moving parts like the jawbridge. Can it get bigger than that? Why, yes. Yes, it can! Just about a year or so ago, Matty Collector front man Scott Neitlich had mentioned that a MotUC Snake Mountain was "unlikely" given the sales issues with Castle Grayskull. However, a lot has apparently changed since then because Matty Collector not only had plans for Snake Mountain, but had a prototype for the booth. Size comparison? It could be massive. Matty's rep instantly clarified that the finished product may not be quite that size although it'll still be larger than Castle Grayskull (and, given that Grayskull had an initial US$250 price tag, I shudder to think how expensive Snake Mountain will be!). Apparently the prototype was too big for the booth's display case which had to be remodeled to fit it... or so the legend goes. Sure, the story told by the rep could be bollocks, but I want to believe that. I want to believe. THEN they mentioned that it would feature a bluetooth speaker. This way the old Skeletor voice changer could be an app and you can play music from the cartoon (or whatever) from it. The rep went on to say, "We have no idea what it's going to cost." Well, that makes two of us.... and the prospect is scary. Because I want this. I want this bad. Of course, on a completely personal note, that announcement would pale in comparison to the next big reveal. The rep played a video featuring kittens playing with MotUCs and used it to segue into... Yes! THUNDERCATS! The crowd ROARED in response to the ThunderCats Classics reveal. The audience reaction was absolutely deafening. The ThunderCats Classics line, which is in the MotUC scale and style (because that's where some of the parts are coming from >_>), also had painted figures on display at the booth which spoiled the surprise for anybody not at SDCC because photos were flying around fast. While I was floored by the Lion-O, Jackalman had me tossing money at the screen. (Not so fun fact: I had pre-ordered the Icon Heroes Jackalman, which looked fantastic, and watched as it got pushed back month after month until Icon Heroes just canceled the damn thing.) Matty Collector has always been in the habit of dragging out lines by mixing up A-listers with supporting characters so, while other toy lines may have been canceled by the time they reached Jackalman, Matty Collector is giving us the fan favorite minion right off the bat. Yes, I'm sure we would seen him anyway in the club's inaugural year, but I'd rather get him sooner rather than later. The old, decrepit version of Mumm-Ra will be a sub exclusive (because I needed more motivation to subscribe?). He's going to feature both the cape seen here as well as an open cape so his arms can be outstretched like in his transformation sequence. The packaging hasn't been decided, but one of the options looked curiously like the packaging that Bandai of America used on *its* ThunderCats line. (Remember when that was a thing?) [[Editor's note: Curiously, the presentation included no mention of the Ghostbusters Animated series line and I'm wondering if I missed a cancellation notice somewhere. I know that DST is doing the movie stuff, but didn't think that impacted the cartoon items.]] Things then shifted to the Question & Answer segment, which is usually a throw away. I was half paying attention until this brave man stood up... While I may never know his name (but I imagine I could find it if I really bothered looking), this champion of the people mentioned how he had bought two of every club thus far but wasn't going to continue. He directly called out Digital River (aka that company-whose-name-we-wish-was-never-spoken-and-whose-service-wasn't-used), citing that the distributor had REPEATEDLY shafted him on money which it refused to return (or, as collectors call it, just another day for Digital River). Given that this is a massive, extremely common complaint, I silently cheered along with the rest of the crowd... then suddenly suspected he was a plant, meant to be used so Matty Collector could reveal that a more competent delivery system was going into place. But no, that sadly wasn't the case. When the audience member said that he wouldn't buy from Matty if they continued to use Digital River and then asked, "Is there an answer to this problem?", the rep merely replied, "There's no answer." The rep then mumbled that they're aware of the problem [[Editor's note: They've been aware FOR YEARS at this point. None of these complaints are new and none are ever resolved.]] and are seeing what they can do to fix them. You know, the usual response! The rest of the questions (or the answers) were more garden variety and boring. Matty refused to reveal additional details about the ThunderCats club. Matty couldn't say more about the new Masters of the Universe movie (although they saw a new script). Different scales for the figures are never out of the question, but currently no plans.
Mattel photo
Feel the magic, hear the roar...
One of the few panels I make sure to catch each Comic Con is Matty Collector's "MattyPalooza." While I can't always make it to a con, you can usually find the presentation in its entirely on Youtube (thanks, Pixel Dan!). For ...

SDCC 2015 Transformers photo
Repaints, retools, and reissues
Hasbro didn't play all of their cards last month at BotCon, but they certainly played their best ones. Hasbro's display and presentation at San Diego Comic Con 2015 was a little lacking compared to years past. We did finally ...

DC Collectibles photo
Too much?
DC Collectibles released a video showing off an array of upcoming figures, along with a massive image gallery. While the gallery looks like a mix of new and old reveals, the video highlights newer offerings including more Bat...

ThunderCats photo
Or will you just meow? has snagged a sneak peek at an unpainted prototype for Mezco's upcoming Mega Scale Tygra. A paint version will allegedly be on display at Mezco's booth (#3445) during SDCC next week. ThunderCat lovers will rec...

Top sales 6/15 to 6/21 photo
Top sales 6/15 to 6/21

Top selling toys in Japan for week of 6/15 to 6/21

Break time's over
Jul 07
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
For some reason took a short break so we don't have rankings for the week of 6/8 to 6/14, but things appear to be back on track! This particular time frame has been a bit delayed, so expect the week of 6/15 to 6/21 ...

Tomopop Review: SDCC exclusive Transformers Kreon Class of 1985

Jul 05 // Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Figure Name: Transformers Kre-O Kreon Class of 1985Figure Maker: HasbroRetail Price: US$59.99Available at: San Diego Comic Con booth #3329 This is a very big box set, I'd say it's roughly the size of an Xbox One, or one of those big coffee table books. It looks a bit blurry because the outside of the box as sort of lenticular wrapping to make it sparkle so it's hard to get a good focus on it. If you haven't guessed by now the box is made to look like a high school yearbook. The front cover features Grimlock, while the back cover features... Devastator! Not surprising since they're also offering the massive Titan class Devastator at SDCC this year as well. The top and spine of the box/book also has yearbook stuff on it.  And there's the inside, 30 figures line the inside of the box, all representing figures released in 1985. There's also a little section on the bottom right full of neat little trinkets that fans of 1980s movies will certainly recognize. This is also a really great way to display the set if you have the space for it. Some of these figures have had Kreons before, but changes have been made to give them a unique look.  Let's take a look at all 30 figures! Yes, all of them, but it'll be brief I promise. First up is Alpha Trion. He didn't have a figure in 1985, but he did make his first appearance in the cartoon that year. The figure isn't bad, but he really needs his long beard, otherwise he's just some guy with a lot of white around his mouth. A cape or something would have been good, too. Personally I find him the weakest of the bunch so it can only get better from here! Astrotrain is looking good in his cartoon colors. When the Triplechanger was released by Hasbro he was mainly in white and looked nothing like his animated self. This is strangely one of the most accurate representations of Astrotrain that Hasbro has released.  Beachcomber is looking really good here, modeled mainly on his original figure. The upside down and split Autobot symbol is a neat touch, though you'll see it soon enough on other figures. Kinda funny giving him a gun when he's a nature loving pacifist.  Blaster is pretty near perfect. My only real complaint is that he doesn't have the gray patch on his forehead. Looks a bit more like the Marvel Comics version this way.  Blitzwing looks just about perfect. Not crazy about the wings wince they were a minor detail on the figure in bot mode. Should have found a way to stick a gun on his back instead. Not entirely sold on Bombshell here. Body looks great and the face is nice, but the helmet is a no-go. Bombshell had a really distinct head with a gun sticking out and this is not it. This is one of those "if you can't do it right, then don't do it at all" moments. Especially when they didn't do Shrapnel in this set and his head would have been easily imitated. Cosmos looks pretty good. I do question the helmet choice since he has a head shaped like a really tall flan pudding. A dome helmet would have been better than this. Otherwise, it's good enough. I'll overlook that he doesn't look like a balloon with arms and legs.  Ah, here's our back cover model, Devastator. Not a bad attempt at trying to make a single Kreon figure look like a combiner. Scavenger and Bonecrusher are only represented by yellow marks on the arms, but still nice.  Dirge looks great, though he's supposed to have brown wings. If they gave him brown wings, he'd be perfect.  Grapple is pretty awesome looking. I can do without the leg wheels and wish they could come up with a smaller gun hand.  Front cover model Grimlock appears! Great representation and glad he comes with his double barreled gun. I do wish you could see his face details a little better with that helmet.  Hoist is really nice, though he does have that gun hand again, and I wish he didn't have something as identifiable and Soundwave's helmet.  Inferno is much like Grapple, just in red. He does have a different face so that's good. The annoying gun hand comes back again as well.  Jetfire is really great. He's based on his figure version and not the cartoon version where he was known as Skyfire. Not sure about the black helmet, since the original had an entirely white head with black antennae. I think I'd have preferred a while helmet instead.  Kickback looks like Kickback. It's one of the best likenesses in the set.  Omega Supreme is a very nice attempt. I don't know if sticking a scuba mask and tank on him is something I would have done, but it works, mostly. The white things are supposed to be tank tracks and they're completely pointless since they weren't on the original figure or any media like this. Instead, he had large quarter circle wings on his back. Claw hand is good enough, but this figure actually gets the gun hand right. I wish the others had this gun.  Powerglide is pretty good. Head's a little tall, but it's a nice attempt.  Ramjet is nice, but he's the only jet missing wings for some reason. I know he had some unusual wings on the original figure, but they could have still faked it.  No complaints here with Red Alert. I do wonder how long they debated giving him a red head like the cartoon or the black head like the figure.  Seaspray turned out nice, though the yellow on the blue legs turned green which is too bad.  Skids is probably my favorite from the set. He's colorful with lots of painted detail, doors on his back, and big guns on his arms. I really have no complaints; I think someone put a lot of care into making him look right.  Here's Dinobot number two, Slog. Actually, it's Sludge the brontosaurus, but Hasbro lost the name rights. Going by this set, it seems they've lost three of the Dinobot names for future figures. We got a hint of that during the fourth movie, and it wasn't just Michael Bay being strange about names.  Most disappointing of the Dinobot renames is Slag now being Slug since slag is now a Transformers curse word. Couldn't they just stop saying it and let poor Slag keep his name? Figure is nice enough anyway. Smokescreen is also a great one; check out the windows on his legs. Like with Skids, it's hard to go wrong with the doors.  Hey, Snarl gets to keep his name! He's got a decent likeness in the head and body. They tried to imitate the plates on his legs with gold lines; it works well enough.  Swoop wasn't as lucky as Snarl and has now been renamed Strafe. That's too bad because we've already got a character named Strafe and now things are getting confusing. Ignoring the name, it's a fair likeness to the original toy rather than the blue cartoon model. What I don't get is why they gave him the bird helmet when this figure doesn't transform. Would have been great with a different helmet.  There's Thrust, the last of our Conehead team. Probably the best of the group since his wings are basically the right color.  Topspin is kinda hard to do wrong since his figure didn't have a ton of details to begin with. I do like the chest art. Too bad his partner Twin Twist is missing from the set. Tracks looks pretty great with really cool body art. He also has wings, so the attention to detail is a good fit.  And the last figure is Warpath! No real complaints here; he even has his chest canon. I do think painting his feet gray like tank treads would have been a good idea. So that's the figures, let's take a look at the little bonus trinkets in the set.  Here's Grimlock in a letterman jacket with the Dinobot team. I figure the Autobot cover model would wear this. Meanwhile the Decepticon cover model gets a denim jacket. The jocks wore letterman jackets while the bad boys wear denim. That's just the way things worked in the '80s. Guess the movie! OK, it's probably not that hard; there aren't a lot of movies where a sports almanac is important. The three Back to the Future references here include the almanac, a Doc Brown wig, and a page of the newspaper featuring the clock tower.  Also a reference to BTTF is this "JetFire be good" album that at first had me wondering why there was a CD in the set until I made the connection.  How about some Goonies references? Here's not-Chunk with the treasure map and not-Sloth with a not-Baby Ruth bar.  I'm going to guess this detention notice is from the Breakfast Club because I can't think of any other movies from 1985 where that would be a thing.  I haven't yet figured out what these coins go with. They're numbered 10, 20, 30, 40, and 50. They might be treasure from Goonies or could be arcade tokens. I have no idea.  Last piece is a box of Unicron Crunch cereal. Probably just a fun '80s prop.  So that's the set of 30 figures with a bunch of fun little parodies of different '80s movies. It's a good set, but great if you're a Kreon collector. US$59.99 is a lot of money for a set of Kreons, but it comes to only US$2 per figure which is a heck of a deal. I think if I was a teacher giving Hasbro's art project here a grade, it would be an easy A-.  [Massive thanks to Hasbro for the review sample!]
SDCC Kreon Class of 1985 photo
Top of the class
Back in 2011 Hasbro had this novel idea to take on LEGO head to head in the toy aisles by making their own brand of building blocks. Kre-O ended up being a somewhat notorious building system. It premiered as a line ...

BotCon 2015 photo
BotCon 2015

BotCon 2015: Transformers Fan Club reveals 2016 figure lineup

Armada Ramjet and Skywarp? Yes please!
Jun 24
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
This past weekend at BotCon the Transformers Collectors Club laid out their plans for 2016. This year they didn't go nearly as obscure with their figure choices as they did with the 2015 selection. I don't want to join the su...
BotCon 2015 photo
Bruticus versus a swarm of Autobots
This past weekend at BotCon 2015 Hasbro at long last revealed a first look at many figures we knew were coming, but have been eagerly awaiting a chance to see. Among them are eight classic Autobot cars reimagined as combiner ...

Transformers Legends photo
Your move, Hasbro
[Update: The three were shown at Tokyo Toy Show 2015 earlier this week fully painted. They were only shown in bot mode and pics can be found in the gallery. Plus pre-orders are still available in a number of places. (via Daim...

Marvel photo
Animated can also mean enthusiastic
Diamond Select Toys, makers of the popular Minimates line, has announced that Walgreen's will be selling an exclusive Minimates series based on the Marvel Animated Universe. Marvel Minimates Animated Series 1 will be availabl...

SDCC photo

DST announces SDCC exclusives

Back to black... and white
Jun 11
// Scarecroodle
Are you excited for SDCC? Diamond Select Toys is giving collectors a dozen or so more reasons to get hyped with an array of con exclusives. The exclusives include some black & white resin sculptures based on the Batman: T...
DST photo

Are you ready for DST's Fall offerings?

Because my wallet isn't
Jun 01
// Scarecroodle
Diamond Select Toys has posted details for its upcoming Fall selection, most of which is currently up for pre-order. These offerings include a: MLP:FIM Dr. Whooves vinyl bank Femme Fatales Batgirl (B:TAS) Femme Fatales Tarot...
Reissue Trypticon photo
That isn't long enough to save for this!
It's really happening! A few months back there was a rumble coming out of Asia that a number of G1 reissues were on their way from Hasbro and we've finally gotten confirmation of the biggest one yet: Trypticon! Neither Hasbro...

SDCC 2015 Transformers photo
Not-so-jolly green giant gets repainted
As people suspected, one of this year's San Diego Comic Con exclusives from Hasbro is Titan class Devastator. Like with the 2013 SDCC Titan Metroplex, Titan Devastator is pretty similar to the retail version, but features add...

Masters of the Universe photo
Masters of the Universe

Two-Bad isn't Too-Good for the general public

Too-Bad he may sell out early
May 08
// Scarecroodle
Matty will be selling some leftover stock of MotUC Two-Bad during its upcoming May 15th sale (which is currently labeled as "April 15th because, you know, screw proofreading!). Fans will recall that the figure was switched to...
My Little Pony photo
My Little Pony

More MLP vinyl banks hitting stores, first male pony TBA

Galloping into a store near you?
May 06
// Scarecroodle
Accompanying the news that Rarity and Fluttershy will be showing at retail soon was the announcement that Diamond Select Toys plans to reveal the first male pony in its My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic line later this mont...

Take a look at BotCon 2015's complete box set

May 05 // Jeremy Emerje Crocker
BotCon 2015 photo
Cybertron: Most Wanted
BotCon 2015 is a little over a month away so let's see what's in store for their box set, Cybertron: Most Wanted. The story takes place on Axiom Nexus, a Cybertronian hub city at the  center of the Transformers multivers...

Transformers May Mayhem photo
Transformers May Mayhem

Hasbro, IDW, and retailers team up for Transformers May Mayhem

Month long event features comics, figure reveals, and more!
Apr 30
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
May might be the month of flowers and warming weather, but Hasbro wants to make sure it's known for something else: Transformers! Through the entire month of May Hasbro will be combining fans with retailers and various events...

Tomopop Review: Transformers Combiner Wars Brake-Neck

Apr 30 // Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Figure Name: Transformers Generations Combiner Wars Deluxe Brake-NeckFigure Maker: HasbroRetail Price: TBAAvailable at: Coming soon! To start things off we'll take a quick look at the packaging. It's pretty much the same as the other Combiner Wars figures. He's in the North American packaging so it should be interesting to see if there are any sales limits for countries that would normally get their figures in international packaging. He comes with a copy of IDW's Combiner Wars #8 comic, the same as Dead End.  The back of the package has a strange little oversight on it. Even though it's supposed to feature all five G1 characters they accidentally replaced Dead End with Brake-Neck instead of Offroad. Oops.  Bot mode is pretty imposing. He's big and bulky and has one neat feature not found on any of the Aerialbots. The molds used for Breakdown and Dead End (and of course Brake-Neck) have an extra part making up the chest that covers the combining peg. It's something unique that really changes up their look compared to other Combiner Wars figures. I do wish he had something that resembled feet, not having feet might be a little too G1. For the most part the Stunticons feature new bot modes while their vehicle modes, heads, and color pallet are the only things that carry over.  Yeah, he has a bit of a backpack, but it sits in such a way that it doesn't really effect the look of the figure that much I think. It's also light enough that it doesn't throw off his balance at all. His legs open with a hinge on the side to fold them over when transforming. It's not entirely unlike the way these figure would transform in G1. I'm not sure what the story is with the orange paint, it should be dark red. It doesn't even match the red plastic it's supposed to blend in with.   The head sculpt is like what we used to see in the G1 cartoon and comics with the barbs sticking out of the side of his head rather than the the square head the original figure had. This is a very, very good thing. I'm glad Hasbro stopped using light pipes for the eyes on these figures, but for some reason they've been given really tiny eyes. They're painted, but they're so small it can be hard to tell. Speaking of the eye paint, if you have a choice of figure try to pay attention to the condition of the eyes. I've found a lot of them have chipped paint, probably from their assembly. It seems to be a pretty common problem so I hope they get this fixed for later releases.  Articulation is good, consisting of a mix of ball and clicking joints. Of all the strange places to put one of those clicking joints is the wrists where they fold in for the transformation. No idea what purpose that serves, maybe they're worried about them becoming floppy? Each figure comes with two weapons. For the Stunticons their primary is a melee weapon of some sort. In Brake-Neck's (and Dead End's) case it's a pipe. Not sure why they went with a pipe when the others got swords and axes, but it is what it is. The secondary weapon is like the multi tool of Combiner Wars. For the Deluxe class figures it's a gun, but for the combined mode it's either a foot or hand, while some of the Stunticons also have them acting as external engines for their vehicle modes.  I've got a few complaints about car mode. First, as mentioned before, the orange paint is just strange. It's not a case of them not being able to match the red plastic because the windows are painted red. Also not crazy about the out of place red block under the window, really should have slapped some gray paint on that. On the bright side the tire rims are painted, that's always good.  I do like the silver patch, the offset Decepticon symbol and that they painted the headlights properly, I have to give them credit on this, he looks very good from the front.  Unfortunately that's where they stopped. There isn't even the smallest bit of paint on the back so no rear window and no taillights. I suppose not all cars have rear windows, but they could have at least stuck some of that red window paint on the lights.  See, Dead End got a window. To be fair there isn't a window molded in there and the original Wildrider figure didn't have a rear window while the original Dead End did. Like with Quickslinger and Firefly it's likely this mold was designed with both figures in mind from the start.  As the story goes, after Wildrider (or Brake-Neck) parts ways with the Stunticons this new guy named Offroad shows up and takes his place. They're uneasy about replacing their departing teammate, and even more so when Offroad appears in Wildrider's colors. When Offroad was first announced and we had only seen his truck mode people thought he was the same character as Wildrider.  But the similarities end with their vehicle colors. Bot mode shows them with entirely different pallets. In reality Hasbro had intended for Offroad to be an update of Triggercon Ruckus, but that guy is dead in the comics and Hasbro couldn't really justify making him a Stunticon so they turned him into a new character. The head mold is still very much Ruckus'.  I guess this is why they gave him a pipe for a weapon. If it weren't bent on the end you could say it doubles as a gun, but no, it's just a pipe. The other weapon doesn't serve any other purpose than a gun in car mode.  Here's the entire team. What was once five is now seven. Five Deluxe class, one Legends class (Blackjack), and one Voyager class. They make for a pretty imposing troop. But it wouldn't be Combiner Wars if they didn't have one more function.  Menasor is one big bundle of hate and looks the part! Like the individual Stunticons his primary weapon is a giant sword rather than a gun, made by combining Motormaster's weapons. Like Superion he's an action figure in his own right with a full range of articulation. Unfortunately the part of Motormaster that the cars connect to is pretty weak and comes apart easily when you move his arms. Also his hip joints, which are already awkwardly designed, are very stiff and hard to manipulate. Blackjack can just barely stay in his chest as the pegs holding him in are too short and thin. Some people have come up with an alternate method of configuring him in there, but you may just want to keep the chest doors closed, it looks more G1 that way anyway.  I do love that head sculpt! The horns are new, they weren't quite like bull horns on the original figure or the cartoon, but they kinda work. What I love is the face sculpt. A lot of photos don't really capture the details adequately, but there's a lot of depth and layers to the sculpting. Plus I think the expression is perfect! Leg mode is a simple matter of folding over the front of the car and adding a foot. It's basically the same idea as the G1 figure, but I wish the front could be folded up to hide the joint the same way the Aerialbots can. Unfortunately this is the only way the front will fold in this form.  As an arm the transformation is a bit more involved, but it's basically the robot mode with some modifications. I like that Hasbro tried to make Brake-Neck's arms do something different rather than just sitting at his side. So there you have it. Brake-Neck isn't a bad figure by any means, but I think there are just a couple areas that could have made him a great figure. His transformation is as complex or more-so than some of the other Generations figures we've gotten in recent years and his sculpt is really great. However it's hard to overlook that orange stripe and I rally wish they had put some paint on the back end so it isn't just a blob of gray plastic. As limbs he's very functional, though I wish he could hide the knee joint in leg mode. Weapon could have been better, but it's not that far different from the rest of the Stunticons. In the end only people who will be buying Brake-Neck are people who already own the other members. If you're already that committed you probably already know what to expect and will get Brake-Neck to complete the team regardless anyway.  [Giant-sized thanks to Hasbro for providing the review samples!]
Transformers Brake-Neck photo
Prepare for a wild ride(r)
Brake-Neck is an interesting name. It's a dual play on words using brake in place of break since he's a car and making it part of a phrase meaning to drive recklessly at high speeds. It isn't a terrible new name for a guy onc...

Tomopop Review: Transformers Combiner Wars Quickslinger

Apr 30 // Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Figure Name: Transformers Generations Combiner Wars Deluxe QuickslingerFigure Maker: HasbroRetail Price: TBAAvailable at: Coming soon! And here we are! Nothing really different about the packaging compared to the other figures in the line. He's in the North American packaging rather than the international packaging so it should be interesting to see what this means for availability in other countries. He comes with IDW's Combiner Wars comic #3, likely the same comic that Firefly (Fireflight) comes with.  From the back of the box. An error was made in the diagram for Superion showing Quickslinger as the same mold as Skydive instead of Firefly. At least the G1 team members are correct, unlike on Brake-Neck's package. But that's enough about the package, let's get to the figure. And here's Quickslinger! People who already own Firefly will know what to expect from Quickslinger, but there are still some things worth pointing out. The colors come from a couple difference influences. For the most part the figure is based on the colors from the original G1 figure. However the black hands and feet make their way from the G1 cartoon. The blue visor is likely IDW's doing or maybe just Hasbro wanting to break things up a bit. If you want him with the orange visor you'll have to get the Takara Tomy version. The use of black really helps to separate the two even though they're basically the exact same figure. The gold paint is also nice, it's very shiny. Firefly's silver on white treatment doesn't really do it for me. Don't get me wrong, Firefly isn't a bad looking figure, I just don't find it as interesting despite all the red.  From the side you can get an idea of how massive his lower legs are. I actually don't mid that since it gives him some great stability. People complain about the legs being hollow, but really, they kinda have to be for the transformation process. He's actually a pretty sturdy figure and the hollow legs help with the combined mode.  He does have a lot of stuff on his back, all of the Aerialbots do, but it's a far cry from the original G1 figure that had what amounted to tiny jets on their backs. His transformation isn't quite as straightforward as it looks.  A closer look at his face reveals something interesting. I don't know if it's intentional or just a flaw in the mold, but there's this 'crack' going across his forehead. He was killed in the comics (though expected to return somehow eventually) hence him being left out of the team originally, so I'll take it as battle damage. Typically he's viewed as a little guy and something of a braggart, but that face is all business. Dying sure does change a bot.   His articulation pretty good, a nice combination of ball joints and clicky ones. I'm especially happy with the bicep swivel that all Combiner Wars figures have. Every now and then Hasbro leaves them out so I'm always happy to see them used. Wrist articulation would have been nice, but this is what's normal for Deluxe class figures these days.  He does have the added benefit of being able to look up. His head is sculpted in such a way to give enough clearance for him to do this. Not all of the figures in the line can do this and it's not a part of the transformation so it's a nice little extra.  He's also pretty well armed. All CW figures have two weapons. The first is their primary which varies from figure to figure. Some have guns and others have melee arms. Then there's the secondary weapon, capable of  taking multiple forms. Aside from being a weapon it can also turn into a foot or articulated hand for the combined form. In vehicle mode some even turn into engines. Some say they're too small as feet and too big as hands, but I think they're fine as is. I feel like this jet mode suits him better than it does Firefly. On the G1 figure his wings run even with the top of the jet where the original Firefly (or Fireflight) had his wings run even with the bottom of the jet. In all likelihood this mold was designed with both figures in mind from the start, but I definitely see more G1 in this figure than in the Firefly version. Usually all white would make a figure blander, but for some reason I like him more than the red. Maybe it's the orange cockpit, I was never a fan of the silver one.  It's a bit strange, but these Deluxe class figures don't have proper landing gear. This mold does have a front wheel, but the others don't. So he basically just props himself up on his feet. I wish they would have sculpted fake wheels into his feet at least. I guess he's lucky to have feet at all, some of the others don't.  He does a fair enough job of hiding his bot parts. Surprisingly they didn't take the simple method of having his lower legs slide up over his thighs. Instead the legs split and fold up and over the thighs. It seems more complicated, I'm not entirely sure what the benefit is, except that in the long run you don't have to worry about the sliding parts wearing out and the figure not properly standing. Nearly all of the CW figures use a variation on this leg transformation.  Of course you can also mount the weapons under the wings if you want. These figures all have multiple 5mm ports you can plug weapons into so you can stick weapons into different places. Each figure has ports in different places so placement is up to you. The complete team is pretty impressive, made up of five Deluxe class, one Legends class, and one Voyager class. A lot of people thought Alpha Bravo looked too much like Quickslinger, but side by side they couldn't be any more different. Of course we still have to cover their main purpose, to combine! Superion is nothing short of impressive towering at a foot tall. Here I have Quickslinger acting as a leg. Back in the G1 days the jet side of the leg was always in the back. I was never a big fan of that. If a giant robot is made of a bunch of vehicles I want to see vehicle parts. I'm happy with the way these are configured. I've seen a lot of people display these with the lower legs backwards, but you lose the knee joint in the process so I don't really see the point.  Superion is an action figure just like any other and has all of the articulation you'd expect from a large figure. He's also very solid and well balanced, possibly the best combiner that Hasbro has ever made.  Here's Quickslinger as an arm. Where the leg configuration isn't all that much different from his jet mode, the arm configuration is more like his bot mode. There's a lot of clearance here thanks to the jets being fairly thin characters so you get a lot of ROM from the arms. The bot thighs acting as an elbow joint lets him flex a little bit more and the bot pelvis works like a bicep swivel. The shoulder joint is the leg mode's knee so there's a lot of movement there as well.   Hey, remember a couple years ago when Hasbro tried to make a combining Fall of Cybertron Bruticus? That figure was something of an abomination, but it had the right idea using a universal combination joint allowing for components to act as both arms and legs. It wasn't very well executed, but I like to think that Hasbro learned a lot from that experiment and Combiner Wars turned out all the better for it. I do wish they made  a way for the weapons to combine as well, but with all of the ports on the figures you can probably find a way to make the most of them all the same.   So there you have it. Now that Quickslinger is here we have a genuine complete G1 Aerialbot team for the first time in nearly 30 years! It's been a massive undertaking for Hasbro and it has paid off in a big way. It's a modern approach to a vintage character without doing a massive overhaul of the character design. This is just the tip of the iceberg in Hasbro's two year plan for Combiner Wars. The Protectobots are starting show at the time of this writing, a massive Devastator will be here later in the year, the Fan Built Combiner is in the works, and rumors have been running wild over many other additions among other things. Hasbro has been putting so much work into this it might very well be another 30 years before we see them take on another project like this.  [Huge thanks to Hasbro for providing the product samples used in this review!]
Transformers Quickslinge photo
He may have a new name, but Slingshot is back!
When Hasbro did their year-long reveal of the Combiner Wars theme for the Transformers Generations line last year fans were simultaneously excited and confused. On one hand we're getting proper updates to popular G1 combiner ...

Batman photo
Every rose has its thorns
Diamond Select Toys' Femme Fatales line has previously been home to a lot of heroines and villainesses with whom fans may not be familiar. However, that's likely changed with the addition of some women from the DC Animated Un...

Tomopop Review: Transformers Combiner Wars Powerglide

Apr 11 // Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Figure Name: Transformers Generations Combiner Wars Legends PowerglideFigure Maker: HasbroRetail Price: US$9.99Available at: Entertainment Earth | Big Bad Toy Store | TFSource | Hasbro Toy Shop Packaging is pretty good and does a nice job catching the eye despite being so dark and gritty. It's also fairly small, especially when compared to the Legends figures from the previous wave and earlier. The figures used to come with small robot partners that could turn into weapons and armor, but for some unknown reason Hasbro dropped them without dropping the price. I'm sure it was to save money, but it left most of these guys weaponless. Here's a closer look at the card art. It's nice art, it comes from the Transformers Legends mobile game, but the card... not so much. If you look closely you'll see the edges are frayed, that's because it's not card stock like a trading card, but rather a thin piece of cardboard. Pretty cheap and doesn't exactly makeup for the loss of the partner figure. The back of the card is basically just advertising the series.Would have been an ideal place to put a bio, even it were multilingual.  Let's take a closer look at the figure. The first thing that really stands out for me is the color. Hasbro for a while seemed to struggle with red plastic, often coming out more pink than anything (you'll see what I mean later). Powerglide here is colored perfectly! This is probably the best likeness we'll ever get since a Masterpiece will probably never happen. For the most part this figure is spot on.  Hasbro just keeps getting better and better with their face sculpts! Only his eyes are visible, yet he appears to be very expressive. I've mentioned this before, but I really hate light piped eyes. Thankfully Powerglide is sporting painted eyes and they look great! Not a lot of kibble hanging off which is always a welcome sight. He also has great proportions with good shoulder alignment. When figures have arms that don't connect to the body directly they occasionally aren't aligned properly, but that's not an issue here.  From the back; Sure, you can see the cockpit, but this isn't a case of the jet parts hanging off his back, this is his back.. I like his broad shoulders, he looks like he's ready for a fight. With the flap hanging off the bottom this reminds me of those images of old martial arts masters from behind. Articulation isn't bad at all. Most of his joints are ball jointed which is the ideal jointing method I think. His shoulders even feature reinforced balls with a pin to keep them from breaking. I do wish he had slightly better arm articulation, but more on that in a bit.  There was something in the sculpting that really caught my eye. Typically to save on plastic they'll make parts hollow as an easy way to cut costs. Usually the hollow parts are pretty bland with only enough sculpting inside to keep them structurally sound, but they're mainly just empty space. This is one of the rare times I've seen actual detailed sculpting inside the part. You can see what looks like a hydraulic for the thigh in there. Someone really put a lot of love into this figure.  Transform! Once again Powerglide retains his A-10 Thunderbolt II mode though some liberties have been taken to the design. Not quite as cartoon accurate as his bot mode, but still a great looking flight mode. The one issue I have with the transformation itself is that the legs don't stick together very well and tend to come apart a little too easily. The hands are quite a bit more visible than I would like, too; it's hard to see them as anything but. I guess if there's a benefit it's this: They do give you a place to stick additional weapons, in this case it's Legends Swerve's Micromaster partner Flanker (in blue) and Legends Cosmos' Micromaster partner Payload (in white) in their weapon modes. Can you see why I wish Powerglide and the other later Legends figures included partners or at least weapons? He doesn't look all that bad from the underside. Where a lot of figures at this size just look like a robot with vehicle parts hanging off it, but the bot bits hide pretty nicely in the transformation. Couldn't help but notice his feet transform the same way the feet on the old G1 Seeker jets (Starscream and the like) did. Kinda funny because the Legends Starscream figure doesn't have feet like that himself.  And finally, here he is in gun mode. As a member of the Aerialbots he acts as Superion's second gun (or only gun since they can be combined). He's pretty effective in this form, equipped with three barrels and a pair of missile pods, maybe even more depending on how you look at him. The front landing gear doubles as a 5mm handle and is stiff enough to support him. Overall he's a deadly looking weapon is enough removed from his flight and bot modes to be convincing. That's basically it for Powerglide so let's compare him to some his past selves. Unfortunately I don't currently own an original G1 Powerglide figure, that's been lost to the ages.  This little guy came with Kabaya's Fortress Maximus DX gum toy and is one of the smallest Transformers I own. He does Transform, but you have to pull the arms out and put them back in to do it.  This here is Cyberverse Commander Powerglide from the Dark of the Moon movie line. For four years or so this was the stand in G1 Powerglide for many people. It may only loosely resemble the guy, but he's quite the transforming marvel. He's a little smaller than Legends Powerglide, but has a lot more articulation and probably twice as many moving parts to his transformation. He's also armed to the teeth (or mouth plate) with missiles. He may not be accurate, but he's one heck of a cool figure.  Finally we'll add in the pair of Transformers Universe Ultra class Powerglide figures. The guy on the left was sold at regular retail and while an OK figure people hated him in those colors. A Powerglide that isn't red isn't Powerglide. Hasbro listened and Walmart stores got the exclusive repaint on the right. Well, he isn't quite red, more of a pink, but it was a step in the right direction. Incidentally this figure ended up being more accurate than the Takara Tomy version which was very red. Too bad these two have funky leg ratchets that either keep them too close together or too far apart which makes him look very rigid standing and hard to pose. The figure would later be repainted based on the even smaller Micromaster Stormcloud.  All have the same basic A-10 form. And while the movie figure might be the most slavishly realistic one, Legends Powerglide is the funnest.  Let's end this by looking at scale. He's roughly the same size as his fellow Legends figures, but there's been a noticeable increase in quality when compared to the Bumblebee figure from 2013 with some pretty thin yellow plastic. Behind him we've got a fairly average size Generations Voyager class figure in Springer, a taller Deluxe Reveal the Shield Jazz, and smaller Deluxe Generations Rattrap. In front are some of the Micromaster partners as seen earlier in bot mode. It's been a while since Hasbro has given us a proper Basic/Scout class size line and this is pretty much what we're getting from Legends. It would have been nice if they had dropped the price when they stopped including Micromaster partners, especially when they're still using molds that used to include partners. Still, as long as they keep remaking G1 Mini Vehicles in this way I'll keep buying them. 
Combiner Wars Powerglide photo
And away we go!
When Hasbro first announced the Combiner Wars theme for 2015 the possibilities seemed endless. And when fans began coming up with different ways to incorporate Legends figures into the combinations the doors were blown wide o...

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