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Messages - Brian

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Kubricks / Re: Kubricks and Minimates
« on: March 9, 2004, 03:37 PM »
LordoftheRingsGuide.com has some more new shots up of upcoming LOTR minimates (Gimli, Theoden, Wormtongue, and Uruk Crossbowman).  Boy, this line is awfully tempting to me....

LOTR Minimates Pics

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Original Trilogy Collection / Jedi Council sets 3 & 4
« on: March 9, 2004, 03:28 PM »
Galactic Hunter has a sneak peek up of the TRU-exclusive Jedi Council set featuring Obi-Wan, Plo Koon and Eeth Koth.  You can check out a pic of this set here:

Jedi Council Sneak Peek

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Other Toy Lines / Re: Toy Companies: Who Does the Best Job?
« on: March 9, 2004, 03:19 PM »
Quote
Toy Biz-- If it wasn't for the Lord of the Rings, this company wouldn't have my money. I quit Marvel Legends because I simply hate chases and this whole one-per-case idea, not to mention the joints on the figures aren't tight enough, so it felt like a complete ripoff. I dig the LOTR line though, and wish the action features were never brought into the line. And, they really need to stop making Gollums/Smeagols now. Right now.

Good point HMI, that is something I have noticed as well with the Marvel Legends line.  At least with the figures I have gotten, many of the joints seem quite loose right out of the package.  I'm scared to try to pose/repose different figures, thinking that I will create even more looseness :).

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Collector's Tips / Online Retailer Opinions and Experiences
« on: March 9, 2004, 03:12 PM »
Just thought it might be nice to have a thread dedicated to the different online retail options that are out there, so anyone who might be curious about a particular e-store can check out how their business is.  I haven't ordered from a ton a different places, but here's some of my opinions:

Kebco I did some preordering through them starting last year, around May, during a major drought in figures in my area.  I ordered some 2003 basic figures, as well as the Han/Boba/Yoda and the Chewie/Luke Unleashed waves through them.  As of today, I have received each and every item that I ordered from them...although I will say that some took quite awhile.  The Unleashed I all got reasonable quick, and well before I found them in stores...but the basic figures that I preordered in May of last year I didn't receive until November/December-ish.  I am understanding that this was a shipment from Hasbro problem, and not their own though.  Overall, I'll say that I have always gotten what I have ordered...but sometimes a little slow.

Brians ToysI haven't ordered from here in quite some time now, but I did when I first got into collecting Star Wars.  I used them to pick up a bunch of loose POTF2 figs that I missed out on, as well as some loose vintage stuff.  At the times I ordered, I always received things very quickly (within a few days usually), and for loose vintage and POTF2, I think the prices are not too bad.  However, if you want anything new, be prepared to pay a TON for it, from what I can see.  I will say, good service whenever I have dealt with them (even replaced a vintage loose figure that I didn't think was C-9), but I haven't used them in quite some time.  Wouldn't recommend for newer stuff though.

Amazon I have used Amazon from time to time, with some TRU exclusive stuff and/or when they have figs in stock.  I've always had pretty good luck with them, however I am an opener, so I'm not sure how good card condition is with them most of the time.  I haven't ordered figures for awhile now because they charge $7.99 for the newer ones (but I think eventually come down).  Overall though, I'm pretty happy with their service.

KB Toys Another one I haven't used for awhile, although I have had decent luck with them as well.  Again, being a loose collector, card condition might be a concern for others.  They do use big stickers here across the front if I remember correctly (but they come off).  They don't usually have a lot of Star Wars stuff in stock (at least recently), but I have ordered a couple of SW things, as well as some LOTR stuff there.  Delivery is quick, prices are so-so for what I have bought.

I haven't used Entertainment Earth, Newforce, Big Bad Toy Store, etc., but have heard good things about all of them from time to time.  I am sure many others can give more details experiences of them though.  Thanks for any opinions everyone!

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Watto's Junk Yard / Re: Christian Bale=Batman
« on: March 9, 2004, 02:54 PM »
Nice article, thanks DSJ.  Personally, I am really looking forward to this movie.  Batman has always been my favorite comic hero (along with the X-Men), and I hope that this movie lives up to expectations as much as possible.  The best thing about this is I think that DC, the actors, directors, etc. have learned from the past Batman movies.  They know what fans/people want to see, and what they don't.  I kind of like the fact that they are "restarting" the franchise, and I hope that it turns out to be done very well.  From what I have read of interviews of the people involved, they really want to make this a great film.

Also, I'm in the camp that thinks that Keaton is the best Batman of the film versions.  When I first heard he was playing Batman, I thought it was a strange choice, but I ended up really liking him in the role.  The 1989, first Batman, was my favorite of the movies.  I think they steadily declined from there.  I still do enjoy watching the old Adam West Batman on TV Land every so often though, sure its silly, but really that is what it was supposed to be to some extent.  I remember watching the reruns a lot as I was growing up.  Anyways, best of luck to all involved on this film, I hope the new "Batman Begins" can give this franchise a fresh start and we can see more of Bats on the big screen.

Also...from that article, DC really has been missing the boat so far on the "comic" movie surge of the past couple of years.  It seems like Marvel has really been taking the reigns on this so far.

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Middle Earth / Re: LOTR Trilogy Figures
« on: March 9, 2004, 02:27 PM »
I know, I'm being slowly sucked into this line too...I kind of want to pick up a few more figures (just RA Legolas and bendy Smeagol right now).  I have been thinking those three packs might not be so bad for someone like me, since I don't have many figures.  Does anyone know how much they run?  I guess I still need to talk my wife into buying stuff beyond Star Wars :P, but I was just curious.

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Hall of Justice / Re: Mattel Batman
« on: March 9, 2004, 01:03 PM »
Just thinking about the Mattel Batman line again today, have any of you heard any news if this line is even continuing beyond the current releases?  I don't think anything was shown at Toy Fair (besides the animated "The Batman" line), and I personally haven't heard of anything more either.  Its a shame, I really do like that Zipline Batman...too bad he doesn't have anyone to fight :P.  I wish it wasn't so difficult to have a Batman line with versions of Batman, the Joker, Mr. Freeze, Catwoman, Penguin, Riddler, Two Face, Clayface, Alfred, Robin, etc.  Hopefully the next Batman line will do a little better...eventually.

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Other Toy Lines / Toy Companies: Who Does the Best Job?
« on: March 9, 2004, 12:55 PM »
After reading the MOTU news this morning, it got me to thinking about Mattel and toy companies in general?  What are some of your opinions on the companies that you collect from, and the job they do?  I don't know that any company is perfect (at least from what I have read), but who is "on the right track" in your opinion?  I don't really buy from many other than Hasbro (Star Wars), but here's a few opinions to start things off:

Hasbro (Star Wars):  Although they have had their problems in the past, and still have their issues now, I think they have been much better as of late (particularly 2004).  It seems they have done a much better job of listening to collectors and fans, and really (aside from the re-releases), I don't know if there is much to complain about this year.  In 2004, they have done a lot of requested characters, much wanted resculpts, made the packaging more vintage-like for OTC (or exact for VOTC), and are making "ultimate" versions of main characters that we have wanted for years.  Like I said, not perfect, but I think they have done a very good job this year.

Toy Biz (Marvel Legends/Lord of the Rings): I am not nearly as knowledgeable on these lines as many of you, but have dabbled in both.  I'm thinking about stopping the ML for now, just because I don't have room and I'm leaning more towards Lord of the Rings if I do buy figures from another line.  It seems, especially now that they have the chase figure thing figured out a little better it sounds, that they do a pretty good job too.  I don't see quite as many complaints about not being able to find certain things...and if they do, later on they seem to be more readily available.  They keep their prices pretty low, especially with the "Trilogy" assortment of LOTR.  Marvel Legends seem to be a good value for the price as well.  And, overall, from what I have seen, they do an amazing job on both of these lines...and I don't see too many complaints about their product for the most part.

Mattel:  Wow, these guys stink it seems.  I have been interested in a few of their lines (Batman, Justice League, and MOTU)...but they seem to be driving all of them into the ground.  We all know to well the trials of the MOTU line, and even though they had tremendous figures (courtesy of the 4 Horsemen)...they found away...with endless variants and HTF secondary characters to basically kill this line.  I'd like to collect a Batman line, but it seems that they do the same type of thing to this line.  I have a Zipline Batman, and that might be all I ever have because of all of the variants (and I wonder if this line will last much longer, with another one coming in the fall).  I really enjoy the Justice League show, but the figures are almost too simplistic (for what they cost)...although they are very true to the show designs, and I guess animated figures aren't usually too articulated.  But, again, just like the Batman line...endless variants and a complete lack of villains (2 in the whole line now, 3 with the Ultra-Humanite later this year).  I really wish they could get a good Batman line off the ground (or improve Justice League for that matter).  When I was a kid, I know I always wanted bad guys for Batman (or whoever) to fight, not just endless versions of him.

Anyways, what are some of your opinions on the toy companies (these or others)?  I hear good things about Palisades Toys with their Muppet Line too, but I don't collect it so I don't know how easy it is to find things.

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Other Toy Lines / Re: Modern Masters of the Universe
« on: March 9, 2004, 10:09 AM »
Although it isn't the best news, I guess it is finally good to see some "definitive" answers on the line.  I gave up on it before I even started, because (1) I was so far behind and (2) I couldn't find anything around here anyways.  I will say though, the figures themselves were great...and I thought that the toyline (aside from all of the variants and HTF figures) was pretty cool.  I'd still like to have a Roboto, may have to try to pick one up on ebay...I think the prices are down closer to $15 now, but we'll see.  I would have liked to have seen Clawful and Stinkor make it into the line too, maybe they will if it continues internationally.

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Watto's Junk Yard / Re: Shoes, Sneaks, Kicks - What Do You Wear?
« on: March 8, 2004, 03:21 PM »
Yeah, I'm not sure what to think of K-Swiss yet....I didn't ask for them, just got them as a gift.  I've only worn them a few times, but I guess they don't look bad at least...we'll see how they feel after awhile.  I did want to add, although I am Nike-buyer to some extent...that's not to say I like everything they do with their shoes (or their business practices).  I really think they make a lot of fugly shoes nowadays, and I have had troubles finding any b-ball shoes I have liked of theirs for awhile (probably why I've been wearing the same pair for 3 years now).  I always liked their "look" growing up (and still today, with some shoes), and they have always supported my feet well it seems.  I tried Reeboks one time, back in college, and my feet hurt so bad.  With my big, flat feet...I really need to find shoes that are comfortable.  But I do agree with you Morgbug about the changes (Air Pegasus, etc.), I don't care for them either.  Seems like those shoe models were better in junior high and high school, when there wasn't so many different ones.  Just Jordan, Flight, and Force for basketball :P.

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Watto's Junk Yard / Shoes, Sneaks, Kicks - What Do You Wear?
« on: March 8, 2004, 02:46 PM »
Just curious as to what types of shoes you wear, or you prefer.  To be honest, I have pretty much been brand-loyal to Nike since I was in junior high, just because they have always felt good on my feet (I have very flat feet), I've always liked them, and they were always our team shoes for athletics in high school.  For some reason, I have a lot of troubles finding shoes in stores (I wear anywhere from a 13 to a 14), and usually end up ordering them online.  My current sneaks are a pair of Jordan Trunners from a year or two ago that my wife got me as a gift.  I also got a pair of K-Swiss shoes from my in-laws for Christmas, although I haven't worn them much.  I also keep quite a few of my older shoes to wear when working outside, walking the dog, etc.  I have some Nike Metal Max shoes that I got from an Eastbay clearance catalog, along with some other Nike running shoes.  I also have some "flip flops" that get a lot of use, and some boots and loafers for dressier occasions.  I haven't ever been one to be able to spend $100-plus on shoes, and anymore I usually look for $70 or less if possible.  Anyways, what kind of shoes do you have, or would you like to have?

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Watto's Junk Yard / Re: how did you start collecting?
« on: March 8, 2004, 10:30 AM »
For me, I guess it started as a kid too.  I had as many vintage figures as I was allowed to get, along with a "hand me down" Falcon and Snowspeeder from my cousins.  Between myself and some of my friends though, we had about everything so it was a fun playtime.  I wasn't collecting when the 95 line first started, but I was working at a Pamida (department store) we have here in town at the time Episode I was hyping up.  At the time, I thought "well, I have always loved Star Wars, so I'll just buy these six just to have something from the new movies".  I bought Maul, Obi, Qui-Gon, 3PO, R2, and Yoda.  Then I saw the commtech Han Solo and Luke Skywalker, and thought they just looked so amazing (when comparing them to vintage molds).  From there it was downhill, I went back (actually through Brian's Toys at the time), and bought a bunch of loose POTF2 figures that I had missed out on.  Since then I've pretty much been a "buy it when I see it" collector, and really enjoy the hobby.  I don't know what I did with my money before this :P.  I think I will probably be with the Star Wars line til the end now, I just enjoy it so much.  Unfortunately, if it wasn't for collecting Star Wars, I probably could have stayed away from all the other toy news as well.  Since I've been a collector, I've picked up Marvel Legends, a couple MOTU, a Batman, and a couple LOTR figures (and I want to buy more of those).  I never would have thought I'd have as much stuff as I do today.  But, collecting (particularly Star Wars) makes me happy.  And, I guess there could be worse things to spend my money on.

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Original Trilogy Collection / Re: New GH Swami Report
« on: March 8, 2004, 10:18 AM »
Its always nice to see some new rumors/news.  Of what was reported, I'm probably most looking forward to the possibility of more Playskool figures.  I really enjoy that line, and it would be great to see it continue in some form.  I'm also curious about the Hoth/Endor playsets, I hope they are done well...and not just re-releases of the POTF2 ones.  We will see.  I also have high hopes for the pack in figures with these things, but like many of you, I'm not expecting much.  I might pick up one of those carrying cases though, I haven't ever bought one before, and I personally wouldn't mind seeing the Y-wing again, I missed it the last time it was released.

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Watto's Junk Yard / Re: Happy Birthday to Boba Binks!
« on: March 8, 2004, 09:37 AM »
I guess I'm a little late, but I hope you had a great birthday David.

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I'm really happy to hear that there is still a possibility of the Playskool line continuing.  We've kind of been thinking the 2-packs might be happening, with the survey Hasbro sent out and ebay prototypes, and I really hope this happens.  Hopefully they won't be impossible to find, or are offered online somewhere at least.  The first round of sets in 2002 were carried in odd places it seemed, and were kind of spotty.  I hope these are easier to locate.

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