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Messages - Nicklab

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Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 27, 2016, 03:22 PM »
Glad to see that the R+L=J plot point has been fleshed out as much as it has.  I had always thought that it would be Howland Reed who would make the big reveal, and not Bran's greensight.  And what Lyanna said to Ned was true:  if Robert had known about Jon's true parentage he would have killed the child.  That's undoubtedly why Ned was so short with Robert in season 1 when they were talking about Ned's supposed mistress, "Wylla" while they were riding south on the Kings Road.  I wonder if this is going to be the extent of the reveals on this front, or if some of Bran's visions may eventually show us both Lyanna and Rhaegar together.

As for Cersei?  She's gone full-on Mad King with her actions.  For the entire series she has been trying to be like her father, Tywin.  She knew that Jaime never could be, and always underestimated Tyrion.  She saw Tywin to be ruthless no matter the cost.  And I suspect that she saw the Green Trial as her own Red Wedding.  But Tywin always seemed to have a goal in mind:  the betterment of House Lannister.  Cersei's paranoia combined with not being half as smart as she thought she was meant that she could never truly live up to Tywin's example.  Tywin was ruthless, but practical, and not beyond making a deal.  Not the case at all with Cersei.  She just doesn't get that part of it.  I think that as soon as Tommen saw what had become of the Sept of Baelor, while being guarded by Ser Gregor, he knew that she was responsible.  And that despite his own best efforts to take control of the crown, it might only be a matter of time until Cersei's paranoia would be directed at him.  She's a monster.  And I think Jaime saw that as soon as he walked into the throne room and watched Qyburn give her the crown.  I think seeing the devastation in Kings Landing and that look were the turning point for Jaime Lannister.  I think he saw echoes of the Mad King who he killed in an attempt to save Kings Landing during Robert's Rebellion.  And come season 7, I could easily see Jaime trying to link up with Tyrion and by extension Danaerys.  I can also see the possibility for history repeating itself for Jaime Lannister.

One of the most heart wrenching scenes of the entire episode was between Jon Snow, Davos and Melisandre.  And OMG, Liam Cunningham knocked that scene out of the park!  I would have cheered him on as he executed Melisandre for burning Shireen Baratheon at the stake.  But this seems like one of those moments where Jon Snow has grown.  The old Jon Snow would have let Davos take Melisandre's head then and there.  But I think he recognizes how murky this world truly is.  After his encounter with the Night King at Hardhome, I think Jon Snow knows that he may need the Red Woman again in the true war.  And now that Jon has been championed as the King in the North?  By none other than that little spitfire, Lyanna Mormont?  She's amazing.  And she shamed all of those Northern Lords in the biggest way.  But now the Starks look like they have some legitimacy in holding the North...much to the chagrin of Littlefinger, who looked very much like someone who had been used.  And that's very out of character, since he's the one who is usually doing the using.

I was a little surprised to see that Benjen got Meera and Bran back to the Wall so fast.  But it was pretty clear from Benjen's words that the Wall isn't just a great construct of ice.  Some form of magic is keeping the White Walkers from getting through the Wall.  I have to wonder if it's the same kind of spell that kept the White Walkers from getting into the cave of the Three Eyed Raven.  Because once the Night King touched Bran during his vision he was able to get into the cave.

I hope that Sam is able to get his Maester's chains before too long.  The Citadel looks incredible, as does the library.  And that dangling chandelier (or whatever it was) seemed reminiscent of something that's been in the show open for the whole series.  But the Maester who received Sam did seem like a bit of a jackass.  Still, when Sam informed the "receptionist" of his being dispatched it was a little funny while being a bit frightening at the same time.  The bureaucracy of it all was clearly meant to come across as absurd, but it also highlighted how the Night's Watch is REALLY removed from the rest of the Seven Kingdoms.  Jeor Mormont has been dead for some time, as has Maester Aemon, despite the records of the Maesters of the Citadel.  And it's easy to see how the real responsibilities of the Watch would seem outlandish and lead to crazy ideas like those that even Tyrion had when he visited the Wall in season 1.

Considering the presence Funko has at Target stores, I have to think these will turn up there.  And maybe at Barnes and Noble, too. 

I had less than a minute to look at these.  I have my daughter with me, and an impatient 3 year old will really dictate the way things go in a hurry.  So I couldn't take in the articulation in that brief window of time.

However, I did find these individually listed on Amazon, and the images on those listings give you some indication that these are a step up from Funko Reaction figures.  Just from looking at a couple of them on Amazon, they look like they've got about 7 or 8 POA at least.

White Walker

Night King

Jon Snow



Tormund Giantsbane

Samwell Tarly


Styr (Magnar of Thenn)

The Wall playset with Tyrion Lannister

I just saw the entire first wave of figures at this store called Couch Potato.  The store totally reminds me of Suncoast back in the day.  But this place has the most Funk Pop figures I've ever seen in one place.  Anyhow, the GoT figures look cool. I don't know if I want to pay $11 per figure like they are at this store, but it's the only place I've ever seen them.  I also saw most of them listed on Amazon, so I might go that route.

Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 24, 2016, 08:41 AM »
That may just be what happens to Kings Landing this Sunday. 

Rogue One / Re: Re: Rogue One Toy Rumors
« on: June 23, 2016, 05:17 PM »
I know there have been a few marginal attempts at this over the years, but as I recall the price points were crazy high (someone refresh my memory on the company and price point - I think they were $100+ and not modular - sort of like nice reproductions of some of the classic mail away displays).

There were Action Figure Display Dioramas made by a company called Pride displays back in 2006...

They were officially licensed and sold for $60. They made 3000 in their initial run and couldn't sell through.

They didn't market them well IMHO. Clearly these were designed to hold the two waves of vintage ANH figures, but they didn't want to spell that out and alienate modern figure collectors. People poo-pooed them (myself included at the time) as too retro and too pricey for being "just a stand."

The company went out of business before they could release designs intended for ESB and ROTJ vintage lines... well as planning to finally throw modern collectors a genuine bone with a ROTS themed display...

Definitely not playsets. Nor marketed as such.

Definitely a failure, business-wise. And the last thing tried in the Star Wars realm that was a display or a playset.

I really, REALLY wanted that ROTS set.  It would have made for a fantastic Palpatine's office diorama.  But I take it the only one that got released was the Tatooine set.

Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 23, 2016, 10:33 AM »
Same here. The article I read said two more seasons, but running about 7 or 8 episodes each.

Rogue One / Re: Re: Rogue One Toy Rumors
« on: June 22, 2016, 10:16 AM »
The part of this playset equation that really needs more attention is what do the retailers want?  Because the retailers are on the front lines here and they've got the sales data.  Very likely they're seeing things like Force FX lightsabers or vehicles selling in higher volume than the playsets.  Those are the sorts of offerings that would occupy the shelf space where you would probably find a playset.  And those tend to sell in fairly high volume.

Likewise, look at a line like GI Joe.  Hasbro owns that IP, which means no licensing royalties, which translates to lower costs/higher profit margins.  Well, when is the last time that GI Joe offered a really large vehicle or playset?  And what about the Marvel licenses?  The last really big item they offered was the Helicarrier.  The trend across these licenses seems to be a smaller retail shelfspace footprint and only rarely going into that $100+ price range.

The Force Awakens / Re: Retail Prices/Sales/Discounts
« on: June 21, 2016, 04:35 PM »
What are people's general experiences buying from "tunghori" on eBay?  I'm tempted to buy the latest wave of WM figures from him, but not sure what the paint quality is likely to be considering how crappy the factory accepted versions of this line have been.  Does he do a fairly good job of screening for quality?

I bought the Walmart exclusive Black Series TFA Han Solo & Leia from Tunghori and received them last week.  I also got a couple of other figures in the order which averaged the shipping costs down a little bit.  Overall, I thought the paint apps were okay.  And I was actually pleasantly surprised with the face paint apps on the Leia.  I have seen some positively awful samples of that Leia surface online, but mine wound up being okay.

Normally I wouldn't go this route.  But I only saw a lone Captain Phasma from this wave in the wild, and I was really getting tired of driving to every WalMart store in the North Jersey area with nothing to show for it.

Rogue One / Re: Re: Rogue One Toy Rumors
« on: June 20, 2016, 03:24 PM »
Third tier characters like Goss Toowers, PZ-4CO, Zuvio, etc seem like they might get a little less love from Hasbro this time around.

I just hope that Hasbro doesn't take this as, "Why should we release the Tonnika Sisters or Sim Aloo.  Background characters don't sell."  I believe fans would prefer those characters from the OT and PT than the NT.

I just think their character mix was off.  Too many background characters packed with not enough heroes. 

This is probably spot on.  But the lack of scarcity of the core characters was definitely an issue after a while.  Poe and Kylo Ren were probably the more plentiful of the core characters.  But Rey, Finn and Han Solo all became a bit tougher to track down in the basic figure line.  Especially after the movie had been released.

Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 20, 2016, 12:52 PM »
That goes without saying.  But she's still on the wrong side of the Narrow Sea.

Rogue One / Re: Re: Rogue One Toy Rumors
« on: June 20, 2016, 10:33 AM »
Kind of bummed to hear that there may have been some chicanery and shenanigans with regard to Twelfth Parsec.  But with any situation like that the reality may be a little different from any one person's perspective on things.  I don't have a dog in that fight other than to regard some of the product as being very cool to look at.

As for Hasbro reevaluating post THE FORCE AWAKENS?  Like I said, some of the novelty items will probably be the area where we see the more sweeping changes.  And I think there will be more fine tuning with the 3.75" figure system.  Notably in some of the assortments.  Buyers seemed to focus much more on buying main characters and troops this time around.  Third tier characters like Goss Toowers, PZ-4CO, Zuvio, etc seem like they might get a little less love from Hasbro this time around.

Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 20, 2016, 10:21 AM »
So does Sansa get to say "You know nothing, Jon Snow"?  Because she called what was going to happen to Rickon.  It didn't make that scene any less heartbreaking, either.

But what about Wun Wun?  OMG, he was amazing!  Wun Wun saved Jon's men as those Bolton men and the Umbers were closing in on the remaining Stark/Wildling forces. He was the only one who was really effective against that shield wall and he gave them all a fighting a chance. But that crush of bodies was probably one of the most terrifying things I've ever seen! At first it looked like one of the men was trying to make sure that Jon was protected. But the sitatuation turned bad in a hurry, and Jon came so to being crushed by the mounting dead and wounded. And Small Jon Umber was just brutal as he and his men came in to finish off those who were able to climb off of that pile. The fight between Tormund and Lord Umber itself was gut-wrenching, and I really didn't know if Tormund was going to survive.

And when Wun Wun broke down the gates of Winterfell and took on all of those Boltons? Watching it was exhilarating, but all of the arrows and spears he was taking clearly took their toll. And then that lousy f*** Ramsay Bolton killed him! Giants were so incredibly scarce beyond the Wall. After the battle for the gate between Mance Rayders forces and the Night's Watch, and the massacre at Hardhome I was left wondering if Wun Wun might have been the last of the Giants. And now he's gone too. Watching Jon take those arrows in his shield and then beat Ramsay to a bloody pulp was incredibly satisfying. But it was that much more satisfying to see Sansa get to exact her own revenge on the Bastard of Bolton.

But at what price? I really think that the price of Lord Baelish and the Knights of the Vale coming to the rescue of the Stark forces will be Sansa's hand in marriage. She's a widow now that Ramsay is dead (despite her previous marriage to Tyrion), and the only known, legitimate heir to the Stark name. Littlefinger has built a significant power base as the Lord of Harrenhal, the power behind the Vale and the North, and he might have found his ladder to the Iron Throne. Especially since King's Landing appears to be on the brink of major destabilization.

Jon Snow said in the coming attractions that the Starks have many enemies now, and he's right. Their own forces were seriously depleted in the Battle of the Bastards. The Boltons are gone. And now the Umbers, Karstarks and Glovers are no longer loyal to House Stark. The North is incredibly weak now, and if the White Walkers breach the Wall, what's to stop them from completely sweeping through the North?

Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 19, 2016, 10:35 PM »
That was one of the most intense hours of television I have ever watched.  I was on the edge of my seat for the entire battle.

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