Firing Squad

Armand Thursday, December 29, 2011

How it feels like every time I tell creatives the clients rejected their ideas. Read on...

Suit of Armor

Armand Wednesday, November 30, 2011
After much wait, finally the set is now complete. Last off from Hot Toys' Iron Man 2 series is the Mark V. I'm not including the Mark II Armor Unleashed in the list because technically the suit was already featured in the first movie.

Hot Toys announced the Mark V sometime in December 2010 and after much, much much delay the figure is finally hitting the store shelves. Most collectors were wondering if this figure would ever make it out of the factory floor seeing as it's been almost a year but the wait, my fellow collector is worth it.

The packaging is similar to the other Ironman figures from the line. I was hoping Hot Toys would somehow make the box art interconnected with one another just like the Mark IV War Machine and Black Widow but alas that was not the case. No biggie tho, just thought it would be cool to arrange the boxes and make one big poster-like collage.

Out of the box the figure looks stunning. The details on the Mark V is astounding. Much love and dedication definitely went into the making of this one. The suit is beautifully replicated down to scale. First thing you'd notice is how scrawny the figure is. Technically this suit is suppose to be light in the plating department and was meant to be portable and having that in mind Tony Stark had to sacrifice a lot of armor to make the suit work the way it does (Whiplash's power whips cut through the armor like a hot knife through butter).

I like how John Favreau paid homage to the classic comic book series by having an updated version of the Ironman briefcase; where in the comics Tony would store his Ironman gear in a briefcase and when needed would quickly change into his superhero duds. They even included the suitcase as part of the accessories, along with the handcuffs. Also worth mentioning is the choice of color for this particular suit. The Silver Centurion armor color scheme was used for the Mark V notably a nod for the fanboys; even though the Mark VI was more like the Silver Centurion armor sans the color. Hey maybe I should photoshop the Mark VI. Hmmmmmm....

The articulation on this one is as good as you're gonna get it. It's far superior in terms of joint movements if you're comparing with the IV and the VI but don't expect the V to perform any contortions. It still has limitations, where the upper arm hits the chest plates. There's actually an instruction manual on how to position the arms during poses. Be careful when posing though, when done wrong you might chip the paint off.

Another thing I'd like to point out is the articulation on the lower body and the ribs. I can't seem to figure out how to outstretch the joints, much like how the IV and the VI could pull the joints apart for more articulation. I tried numerous times to do so but couldn't. Funny thing is the instruction manual actually shows you how to do it but I think I was too scared to risk pulling it and snapping my figure in two.

If only Hot Toys had thrown in a bruised and battered Tony Stark headsculpt in there that would have definitely made my day. I must say I am quite happy with this purchase. Noteworthy to the Ironman 2 line. Hats off to Hot Toys yet again for yet another masterpiece.

Read on...

Enter the Bay (Updated)

Armand Wednesday, November 16, 2011

(Update)Sorry for the error ladies and gentlemen, this Enterbay T-800 is actually in 1:4 scale. My bad, thanks Desmond for the info

Jeng jeng jeng! Well looks like Enterbay has acquired the license to produce the T-800 from Terminator 2. I have no idea as to why Enterbay would want to produce a figure that Hot Toys has just put out on the market barely a year ago. I understand if the figure is a few years old and they would like to make a better version of it but IMHO Hot Toys pretty much nailed the figure.

From the pictures I can tell straight off the bat that the head sculpt on Enterbay is pretty impressive. Dare I say even better perhaps? But there's something about the muscle body they're using that doesn't seem to fit. I can't put my finger on it but it just looks a bit out of proportion especially the shoulder area.

But hey, I think it's good that there's still companies out there who are willing to challenge the almighty Hot Toys for top spot. The other companies try harder, because they're second spot. It keeps the big HT in check seeing as they are starting to monopolize the market and when that happens, capitalism is sure to follow.

Hope Enterbay releases more pictures soon. So if any of you missed out on the Hot Toys version, maybe you'd want to consider picking this one up. Will you be getting one? Thoughts?

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Iron Clad Behemoth

Armand Saturday, November 12, 2011
Tony Stark, mortally wounded was kidnapped and forced to build his captors weapons of mass destruction. To save his life, Tony instead build himself a suit of armor which also allowed him to escape. Since his return from captivity, Tony vowed to protect those in need and so Ironman was born.

The movie back story was slightly different that his comic origins. Something to do with using China as the backdrop was somewhat sensitive, so they opted to use the middle east as the enemy (USA propaganda strikes again people). But no matter, the movie stayed true to the history despite that minor change. No biggie.

One of the more detailed Ironman figures from Hot Toys, the Mark I is indeed beautiful. Though not as articulate as the rest of the line, the detailing on this one is astounding. Every scrap of iron, wiring, nut and bolt were nicely replicated from the actual movie suit to this 1:6 version.

When Hot Toys first previewed the figure on its newsletter, everyone was speculating whether the suit could be removed and reveal a Tony Stark figure underneath but alas we were wrong. Nevertheless collectors were still happy with the end result. The Mark I were selling like ice cream on a hot sunny day when it first came out.

Most of you might have either passed this one on or could not secure an order but fear not. Hot Toys has announce that they will be re releasing the Mark I. It's still uncertain whether the new Mark I will be a reissue of the old one or new goodies would be thrown in so that us poor collectors who already own the first Mark I would have to fork out more cash to actually buy the new version.

I'm starting to get worried with Hot Toys lately. They seem to be milking us dry with reissues, upgraded versions or repaints. And I don't know about you guys but their prices have increased, not by much though.

I'll wait and see what the new Mark I has to offer before I spend my hard earned cash on it. How about you guys? Are you getting one? Thoughts?

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The Pop Culture Room

Armand Friday, November 4, 2011
The Pop Culture Room's finally up and running. I've still got a few more things I need to put up like the 3 Avengers posters but overall this is pretty much how the room looks like. I must say I'm quite happy with how it turned out :)

Click on picture for a bigger view
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A World Without Jobs

Armand Thursday, October 6, 2011
The good ones die young. Rest in peace Steve.
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Comic strip

Armand Monday, October 3, 2011
Was bored today so I decided to have a bit of fun with my figures. Initially I wanted to take some silly shots of Ironman and War Machine but ended up doing a 2 page comic instead.

No plans to make this a weekly thing or what not as I don't want to commit to something I might not be able to keep up. But this will definitely not be the last. So yeah, it's my first time doing this so I hope you guys like it! :)

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Good Cop. Bad Cop.

Armand Sunday, October 2, 2011
The late Heath Ledger gave us a stunning performance as the Joker in The Dark Knight. Who would ever thought pretty boy Heath could have given us one of his most stunning roles as an actor in a purple suit and make up.

The Joker spent most of his screen time donning his trademark purple suit with the exception of his cute nurse outfit, all the while having his make up on. But in one particular scene gave us a rare glimpse of Joker without make up. Man, even without makeup he still looks frigging scary!

So Hot Toys thought it would be an excellent idea to include this figure along with its DX Joker release. I must say a 2 for 1 is not a bad deal. All you need to do is get a Hot Toys TrueType body and dress the thing up and voala! 2 Joker figures for the price of one! I wish they would do more of these 2 for 1 figures. Especially the new DX Keaton Batman. They should include Keaton's head together, that way we can have 2 Bruce Waynes!

But on a more serious note, The Dark Knight would not be the movie that it is without the amazing Heath Ledger. So I here's to Heath, arguably the best Joker there ever was. Rest In Peace. Heath Ledger. 4 April 1979 – 22 January 2008

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Hitting the Mark

Armand Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Ironman 2 to me was not as disappointing as most people might think. I loved every bit of the 2nd Ironman movie as I did the first one. There are few who might not share my sentiments as some say the 2nd one did not match up to the first one. The first one was indeed a fantastic thrill ride, what with it being Marvel Studios' first movie. It was indeed a huge success and matching up to that would be quite a feat. But I say they did a fine job in doing so. Maybe not matching the first one, but the 2nd did the 1st one justice

Ironman 2 gave us more than enough Ironman armour to last at least 2 movies; with the introduction of the Mark IV, the Mark V, War Machine and of course the Mark VI. That's 4 suits in one movie! But hey, who's complaining.

The Mark VI carries an uncanny resemblance to the Mark IV, with the obvious exception of the triangular window on the chest plate that houses the arc reactor. The changes are subtle but if you're sharp enough you'll notice the minute differences. You'd notice that the Mark VI armour is slightly chunkier than the Mark IV most notably the thighs and the calves. The arms and biceps are also beefed up with armour.

Once again Hot Toys delivers and the translation of the Mark VI from big screen to 1:6 scale is simply stunning. With the artistry, dedication and love that was put into this figure, the only direction Hot Toys will be heading right now is up. Let's hope the success they're enjoying won't go to their heads and start charging us premium prices.

Read on...