Archive for the ‘Novelties’ Category

The Walking Dead: Series 5

IMG_0998

My favorite line of action figures keeps on truckin’ with it’s 5th wave recently hitting stores. The line has moved somewhat chronologically and this wave seems to be a transition from the prison to post-prison. As usual, the wave is split between Specialty Store exclusives (LCS: Local Comic Shops) and Toys R Us exclusives (TRU). You can find the LCS toys online or at any stores that sells such things, but if you want the TRU figures you’ll have to get to the closest Toys R Us, as their website is infamously untrustworthy. I’ll start the review by looking at the LCS exclusives:

Tyreese & Prison Michonne

IMG_0985

We first saw this Tyreese figure when the line was initially announced way back when. We’ve since gotten a “last moment” Tyreese, but it’s good to finally get Tyreese as we’d all like to remember him. I don’t know if an explanation was ever given as to why he wasn’t released in wave 1 or 2, as it doesn’t look like any major changes were made to the figure. Tyreese comes with a shotgun, his hat, and an extra hairpiece (in the comic he did appear without his hat sometimes, unlike TV show Ty, who must have a very sweaty head). He does not come with a hammer though, which is a glaring omission in my mind. There’s nothing particularly spectacular about the figure, but it is a good likeness and a welcome addition on the shelf with the other early survivors. A little minimate hammer might have put him over the edge.

We’ve gotten a lot of Michonne’s, but this is the one that I’ve been most looking forward to. Not being a fan of her brightly colored mismatched socks, I much prefer her in something more down to earth. I like the angry expression on her face, too. I think this is the best Michonne the line has given us thus far.

Riot Gear Glenn & Maggie

IMG_0982

The man who wore the riot gear most often now gets a figure. I like the gear, but hopefully this wave marks the end of riot gear figures. We’ve now got Rick, Governor, Glenn, and Michonne. That’s probably enough even though a few other characters donned the protective gear as well (Tyreese, Hershel, Maggie, Andrea, Billy…I think that’s it). Glenn has the same body and accessories as Rick and Gov (only with two full arms). He comes with his hat, which is cool, but doesn’t look quite right with the riot gear. This is our second angry faced Glenn. It looks good enough and fits the outfit, but I don’t generally think as Glenn as an angry guy. It might have been nice to give him a crying face to fit his time in Woodbury. If we get another Glenn down the road, I’d like to see him a little more smiley.

Maggie appears to be representative of the time after the survivors were driven from the prison. She sports the short haircut that she has stuck with since shaving her head in prison. Maggie comes with a long coat, which is cool, but she also has short-sleeved arms so she can coatless, and I think I prefer that look. TV show Maggie is cooler and tougher than comic Maggie, but she’s still an important part of the story and looks to be getting a bigger role in the more recent comics, so she’s a great addition to the crew.

Survivor Morgan, Geek Zombie, & Variant Martinez

IMG_0997

The last LCS set is split between two survivors, Morgan and Martinez. So, if you want them both, you’re going to end up with 2 Geek Zombies. This isn’t terrible, because Geek is a pretty nice and generic zombie; a good horde builder. It seems kind of unfair to call him a geek just because he wears glasses, but I think in the source material he also had some kind of Comic Con shirt or something. Geek brings back the intestine-holding hand that was first found on series 2’s One-Eyed Zombie. Geek also has a slight chunk out of his left shoulder. I like him, and don’t mind having a set of twin geeks.

Martinez was one of the Governor’s men from Woodbury who helped the heroes escape in order to discover the location of the prison. Whether he was an evil man serving the Governor or just trying to help some of the good people from Woodbury can be debated, but Rick finished him off just the same. Martinez’s figure comes with his signature do-rag and a big gun for patrolling the walls. He’s probably the last of the Woodbury crew we’ll see and I’m glad we got him.

This is the second Morgan figure, the first being a TRU exclusive in wave 2. Morgan here is a bit more haggard and I guess represents the time when Rick first found him after leaving the prison; back when he was busy feeding visitors to his dead son. This figure looks fine, but it doesn’t seem different enough from what we already have. I would have preferred a new figure.

Traveler Rick Grimes & Business Zombie

IMG_0989

It’s business….It’s business time! (Flight of the Conchords, look it up!) The first of the TRU exclusives features Rick on the road and a formally dressed Business Zombie. When you hit the road, you best have a backpack. Luckily, Rick does. He probably could have used some food and water, but all he’s got are a flashlight and a shotgun. Beggars can’t be choosers, I guess. We’ve seen all of these pieces before. The backpack came with Series 1 Glenn and his bolt cutters were a much better fit than Rick’s gun. The gun doesn’t fit quite right and sticks up too high if stored in the bag. Rick also comes with his stump bandage and an alternate jacket outfit. Those are nice inclusions for an otherwise ordinary Rick. Again, the addition of one accessory might have put this rick over the top: a little telephone would have been awesome. As is, he’s got a nice grim look of determination, but is an otherwise plain Rick to include in your growing Rick army.

Business Zombie is cool. She has the shoulder stump first found on Dreadlock Zombie and the skirt that came with Series 1’s Female Zombie. As usual with the minimate zombies she comes with an alternate arm if you want her to be slightly less gruesome. Nice to get some girl zombies in this wave, my zombie horde has been a bit of a sausage fest.

Riot Gear Michonne & Hitchhiker Zombie

IMG_0983

Our second Michonne of the series and our second Riot Gear figure; this should be our last riot gear, but there are many more Michonne’s in our future (wave 6 will have a Constable’s Assistant and Evening Gown Michonne). Michonne’s time in the riot gear was pretty brief, she used it during her ill-fated attack of the Governor’s men after his initial attack. I don’t feel that this figure was necessary, but I’m guessing Michonne is character that sells pretty well, which is why she’s so heavily represented. The best thing about this figure is the alternate torso and arms, even though I think they look better on Prison Michonne’s legs.

Hitchhiker Zombie is another fairly generic zombie, which I actually consider a good thing. The horde needs plenty of generic, but good-looking zombies. He’s got a vest and some hip damage, but is otherwise not terribly disfigured compared to his comrades.

Abraham Ford & Military Zombie

IMG_0993

Shortly after the prison debacle, the survivors come into contact with another group consisting of military tough guy Abraham, dorky self-proclaimed genius Eugene, and sultry Rosita. The 3 of them have become fan favorites and recently showed up on TV, so it seems like a good time to get their minimates out as well. This wave takes care of Abraham and Eugene, and recent pictures for Chicago’s C2E2 revealed that Rosita will be part of series 6. Abraham comes with a big gun and a big knife, as well as a pistol and holster to hold them in. He looks good, but I wish there was some way to make him seem just a little bit bigger than the other WD minimates. DST typically saves its bulked up pieces for characters who are HUGE, like The Hulk or Mumm-Ra the Everliving, so it makes sense that ordinary civilians wouldn’t be that big, but all the same, it seems like Abraham should be bigger than Maggie somehow.

I really dig Military Zombie. He’s another fairly generic zombie, but there’s something about his face with the bloody eyes and ripped up mouth that I really like. He also includes the intestines originally found on Guts Zombie, which is another nice piece to get again.

Eugene Porter & Emaciated Zombie

IMG_0991

Finally, we have Eugene. Badass, machine gun wielding, gruff Eugene….wait? what? I don’t know who this clown is, but he certainly does not scream Eugene to me. Eugene’s trademarks are his mullet and his portly physique. This figure features neither. I think an additional torso cover with a gut would have been appropriate here and I’m really disappointed that his hair barely registers as a greasy mullet. It also seems that an obvious accessory for Eugene would be his radio, an essential part of the group’s voyage to Washington DC, but instead he comes packed with a machine gun. Doesn’t make sense to me. Eugene is a great character in the book and I was really looking forward to seeing him in minimate form, but this guy is just not a good representation. DST has consistently hit it out of the park with this line, but Eugene is first flop. Hopefully this line will last long enough for him to get revisited at some point.

Luckily, Eugene’s package-mate is one of the cooler looking zombies. Emaciated Zombie has a frightening face and special skinny rotting arms that look pretty cool. She doesn’t make up for the disappointment that is Eugene, but she’s still a strong figure.

IMG_1007

The Walking Dead minimates remain my favorite line of action figures out currently, but I have to say that this wave was probably the weakest so far. It’s not a terrible series, but between some underwhelming character variants (Survivor Morgan, Riot Gear Glenn and Michonne, Traveler Rick), missing accessories (Tyreese’s hammer, Rick’s phone, Eugene’s radio) and the disappointing Eugene figure, I find myself less excited than I was for previous figures. Wave 6 will feature more Michonne and Rick, but will also give us Carl, who might make it great all by himself. So, I’m still excited and anxiously waiting for my next hit.

IMG_1001

IMG_1004

Previous Walking Dead minimate reviews: Series 1, TRU 1, Series 2, Series 3, TRU 3, Series 4, SDCC Exclusive, Amazon Exclusive, Hershel’s Farm 4-pack

Advertisements

Marvel Zombies: Villains

IMG_0670

Way back in aught-six, Marvel put out a series of comics in which it’s greatest heroes became flesh-craving zombies. At the time, Diamond Select Toys distributed a few sets of the heroes in all their zombie glory (check out my review here). Then for a long time nothing happened. Word on the street was that Marvel decided at some point that producing action figures of Captain America with his brain exposed and blood all over his shield might be too traumatic for sensitive young comic fans. Desensitized adult fans the world over dismayed. Fortunately, it appears that Marvel has softened slightly on their “no zombie toy” policy and has allowed for minimates of their already evil villains. First out of the gate are Magneto, Green Goblin, Magneto, and The Red Skull.

IMG_0673

Zombie Green Goblin & Zombie Red Skull

IMG_0674

This pair is kind of strange to me, since they both kind of have devilish faces already. Why Green Goblin’s mask turns into a zombie is beyond me and Red Skull already has a skull for a head so becoming a zombie wouldn’t change him much. But, that’s source material stuff. These two are pretty nice figures. There’s a lot of re-use on all of these guys, with every figure combining what’s been released in the regular Marvel line with zombie stuff from the Walking Dead line. It fits together well and every choice makes sense. Goblin comes with his glider, this time with a base that is murkier and darker than the typical “blast-off” base. He has an alternate pumpkin bomb hand and Norman Osborn head. The Red Skull has apparently suffered some serious limb damage as both of his hands are missing. As with the zombies in the Walking Dead line, he comes with alternate full arms. I prefer the armless look, because for Skull it’s really what makes his zombieism apparent. He comes with two guns as well. When I opened the pack I thought, “Oh look, two weapons he can’t hold, weird.” But upon further inspection, even armless he can still pack some heat. His pistol fits into his hip holster and the rifle attaches to his back with a strap. The pack also comes with a guts attachment, previously included with TWD’s Crawling Zombie. I decided to let Skull wear it, so that he looks really messed up. It’s actually perfect for the Iron Man zombie, since in the comic Tony does lose his lower half.

Zombie Galactus & Zombie Magneto

IMG_0676

Zombie Galactus is not exactly canon. In the comic, he gets devoured by the heroes, which is how they come to possess his cosmic powers. That’s not really all that important to me and I’m still happy to have a zombified world-eater. Obviously he’s not to scale, but he’s still cool. His helmet is removable, revealing his zombie face, although he’s not a character that you see helmet-less very often. He’s got the least amount of physical damage out of the group, but hey, he’s Galactus, tough to do much damage to that guy. Zombie Magneto might be my favorite of the bunch. Some of the details might be hard to see, but he’s got a see-through torso around his exposed spine so if you took off his cape, you could see right through him. He’s also got a little chunk taken out of his side, which I believe is a piece previously used with Female Zombie and Vest Zombie. He comes with his helmet and an alternate hair piece so that you can display him either way. I don’t think that he ever became a zombie in the comic either, but again, I don’t really care.

IMG_0678

Overall, this is a nice set. It obviously fits in well with the previously released hero zombies. I didn’t think that we’d ever see any more Marvel zombies, so this was a very welcome surprise. DST has intimated that they hope to do similar villain sets around Halloween in coming years. Hopefully that comes to fruition. There were quite a few more high-profile villains featured in the comic, including Dr. Octopus, Juggernaut, Venom, and Sabertooth. Although I’m personally rooting for a Zombie Stilt-Man.

You can obtain this set for about $18-$20 online or at your local comic book or specialty store. As always, I recommend lukestoystore.com for any minimate purchases.

IMG_0683

This is how Rhino went down.

The Walking Dead Minimates: Series 4

IMG_0274

The 4th series of Walking Dead minimates has hit stores. This wave focuses on the survivors’ prison time and their run in with the residents of Woodbury. As per usual, the assortment is broken into Local Comic and Specialty Store (LCS) exclusives and Toys R Us (TRU) exclusives. The Governor is not a man who likes to wait, so let’s get going. First up, we have the LCS two-packs:

The Governor & Gabe

IMG_0241

Perhaps the most anticipated figure in the series so far……..Gabe. Quite a treat, this fellow. Very cool that DST provided the Governor with some goons. In the comics, Gabe was by the Gov’s side at all times during his initial introduction. Essential muscle when you’re cutting off dudes’ hands and committing unspeakable acts against women. Gabe met his demise at a local Walmart when Andrea shot him through the neck, so he never made it to the final battle at the prison. Gabe’s minimate comes packing some serious heat and upon double-checking the reference material, his likeness is pretty spot on.

The most evil man this side of Negan, The Governor has finally been immortalized in plastic block shapes. Not like that pretty-boy TV version, Gov’s minimate captures all of his swarthy glory. He comes with a sidearm and a large knife for hand-cutting, both with holsters attached to his belt. The Governor also comes packed with an extra eye-patch wearing head, which will come in handy later.

Hooded Michonne & Bruce

IMG_0234
This new version of Michonne comes with the poncho she wore while she was out wandering the earth. I gotta say that this figure leaves me underwhelmed and I’m still waiting for the definitive Michonne. Under her hood, she’s got an un-sleeved version of the figure we got in series 2. The poncho just doesn’t work for me. It leaves Michonne a little too restricted, the shoulders seem to sit a bit high, and the whole thing looks a little silly to me.

Bruce is the Governor’s right-hand man. He was loyal straight to the end when he was unceremoniously shot in the back of the head by Andrea during the prison attack. His figure has a slightly bulked up torso piece to account for his girth. He’s another nice looking figure to display with the Governor and Gabe.

Prison Lori & Shoulder Zombie, Variant: Alice

IMG_0230

The last of the LCS exclusives is Prison Heat Lori with a shirtless zombie. The variant in this series is the Woodbury doctor’s assistant, Alice. If you want both Lori and Alice, you’ll end up with two zombies, but unlike some previous variant-packed zombies, this guy is generic enough that he makes for a pretty good army builder. Again DST does a good job with little details. On this zombie, it’s the little folds of flesh where his shoulder wound ends and the fact that his arm nub is red. Like all of his minimate zombie brethren, Shoulder Zombie comes with another arm in case you need your flesh-eaters to be more symmetrical.

Lori is probably my favorite figure of this wave simply because of her super awesome baby accessory. Baby Judith comes attached to an alternate hand. It’s a simple-looking baby with some tiny closed minimate eyes and a mouth, but it looks great in Lori’s arms.

Alice is a pretty simple figure, but she has a nice braided hairpiece and her lab jacket. She also comes with alternate arms so that she can be displayed in her blue t-shirt. Like Dexter, she’s a figure that I did not expect to see in the line and DST seems to have the mindset that this line will continue for quite awhile, as they continue to hold out some fan favorites like Carl and non-dying Tyreese. I’m glad to get the lesser known characters, but still eagerly awaiting some of the biggies.

Next up are the two-packs exclusive to TRU and their online store. These have historically been more difficult to obtain as the website is flaky and you’ll need a little luck hitting a local store at the right time. It does seem like more are being stocked compared to the first two series, so hopefully if you want these guys, you’ll be able to obtain them without too much of a headache.

Survivor Rick & Gunshot Zombie

IMG_0260

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you want zombies, then the TRU two-packs are for you, each one of them comes with an undead ghoul as opposed to the single zombie you get with the LCS wave. This fellow is pretty neat. He’s riddled with gun holes and has a clear torso underneath so if you hold him up to the light you can see right through him. It’s a neat little feature and it looks cooler in person than in the picture.

Survivor Rick is the only figure from this series that exists chronologically after the prison attack. This post-prison Rick is a bit more pessimistic and defeated. He’s unshaven and has long hair. Underneath his jacket and scarf is stained shirt, no one would have cried if he had a perfectly white shirt, but this is another indication that DST pays attention to details with this line.

Riot Gear Governor & Biker Zombie

IMG_0263If you like your Governor with his crazy out on display, DST has included this variant right in the same wave. Gov’s got the same riot gear that Rick had last series, as in the comic he stole it and wore it to the final prison showdown. The only difference is the sleeved stump to indicate the Governor’s battle damage. He also comes with Michonne’s sword. It’s cool that he has it as an accessory, but I much prefer the longer katana that came with Blade and the Hand Ninja in DST’s Marvel line. (You can see that sword in a picture included at the end of the review)

Biker Zombie is kind of a boring fellow. I’m not overly impressed by him. He’s got a weird looking chewed-off hand and flayed right arm. He’s a fine addition to the horde, but he just seems like he’s a mash-up of previous zombies from the series.

Hooded Michonne & Crawling Zombie

IMG_0270DST did something a little bit different with series 4. In the past, there have been 2 shared two packs that could be found at both LCS and TRU. With wave 4, each pack is unique but has repeat figures. I’m a little bit torn on how I feel about this. On one hand we get two more original figures, but on the other, in order to get every figure, you have to get doubles of certain characters. DST eased the pain a little bit by having the repeat figures have alternate looks by including appropriate accessories. In this case, Michonne has new arms not included in her previous looks and an extra hair piece, so you can display one of her with poncho and one without. Michonne’s probably my least favorite figure in this series, so I didn’t really want two of her, but I do prefer her without the silly-looking poncho.

What helps Michonne’s case is the fact that she comes with one of the coolest zombies yet. Crawling zombie comes with a guts piece that substitutes for his legs. Again with the attention to detail, Crawling Zombies has scrapes on his forearms from an afterlife of dragging his bloody body around on the ground.

The Governor & Jaw Zombie

IMG_0264

The second repeat figure is The Governor. That’s right, if you want every original figure in this wave, you’re going to end up buying three Governors. The Governor has an extra eye-patch wearing head so his display can be slightly different than the non-damaged Gov. What is disappointing about this figure is that he did not come with an extra arm stump, making an eye-patched Governor with two arms not comic accurate. To remedy this, I simply pulled half of his arm off at the elbow. It’s not a permanent break, as his elbow can be repaired if necessary, but it’s not a part of the minimate body that is supposed to be dismantled. I’m hoping that at some point DST will throw in an extra arm stump with another pack to complete my post-torture plain clothes Governor.

DST tried some new stuff with their zombies for this wave. The holes in Shot Zombie and the guts with Crawling Zombie really worked nicely. Unfortunately, Jaw Zombie doesn’t fare as well. I’m not sure if his jaw is supposed to look unhinged or if he’s just opening his mouth really wide, but either way the end result is just odd looking. The fact that the color in his lower mouth doesn’t quite match the color in his upper mouth further detracts from the effect. While I appreciate the attempt to try something different within the simple minimate design, this one just falls a little flat.

Overall, wave 4 has some big hits and some misses. Lori and Crawling Zombie are the stars, while the Governor would have been more complete with an extra stump thrown in. I love the inclusion of the goons and Alice, who are also really well done. Series 5 has yet to be announced, but hopefully we’ll continue to see the same quality in selection and execution.

(The Prison backdrops in the pictures are available exclusively at Luke’s Toy Store online.)

Previous minimate reviews can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Keep scrolling for more pics.

IMG_0283

IMG_0255

Woodbury Jerks

IMG_0285

IMG_0278

Zombie Spring Break ’08

SDCC Exclusive TWD Box Set

IMG_0010

San Diego Comic Con 2013 has come and gone, but it will live forever through the exclusive toys that it offered. This year one of Diamond Select Toys’ offerings was a Walking Dead minimate 4-pack based on the survivors’ stay at the Greene family farm.

Barn Zombie & Zombie Shawn

IMG_0018

Who do you think would have been the first of Hershel’s children to be recreated in minimate form? Maggie? Nope. Billy. No way? Headless little kids. Try Again, you suck at this game. The answer is Shawn! Who’s Shawn, you ask? He was Hershel’s first offspring to bite the dust. He’s a pretty intact zombie, as he was well-preserved in a cozy barn with his fellow undead. He’s a nice looking minimate with spots of gore on his chest, hands, and mouth. His partner in crime is Barn Zombie, decked out in overalls and mud-caked boots. He has slightly more damage as he’s missing an arm and appears to have taken a nasty shot to the head. As with all of the semi-limbed zombies in this series, he comes with an spare in case his stump disturbs your sensitive sensibilities. I really like these two. They’re well done and fairly non-descript. I love some of the really specific zombies DST has given us, but these fairly generic guys make for good horde members.

Hershel & Lookout Duty Rick

IMG_0026

In wave 3, we got Prison Garb Hershel, but now we have him in all of his farmy glory. He’s slightly less angry than his first incarnation, but still looks plenty grumpy. This is your definitive Hershel, just look at him, all ready to kick your mooching ass off his farm and into the zombie wild.

Lookout Duty Rick wears a darker outfit (for night time sneakiness?) and a pretty snazzy blanket cape (perfect for keeping warm while sitting on top of an RV or while burying the best friend who tried to kill you). He also comes with a scarf for days when he just feels like being fancy. If you’re collecting the whole line, you’ve already got a handful of Ricks, but it’s good to know that they’re all pretty distinct looks. I’ve been happy with each one so far and Lookout is no exception.

IMG_0027

I found this to be a sneaky-good set. It’s not very flashy and doesn’t give us any new characters, but it does give us a Rick with pretty cool accessories, the definitive Hershel, and two pretty sweet zombies. These are a convention exclusive and are limited to 3000 sets, but they’re still pretty available if you look around online. Amazon currently appears to have it available for $15, which is a good deal since $20 seems to be the standard price.

IMG_0030

The 1st annual Parade of Ricks!

* The super-awesome barn backdrop is not available in stores and at this time is probably being recycled somewhere in upstate NY.

Previous Walking Dead minimate reviews:
SDCC 2012 Exclusive
Wave 1
Wave 1 TRU
Wave 2
Amazon.com Exclusive
Wave 3 TRU
Wave 3

Walking Dead Minimates: Wave 3

IMG_0178

A few weeks ago, I reviewed the Toys R Us exclusive minimate figures from Wave 3 (Glenn, Carol, Vest Zombie, and Pole Zombie). The rest of Wave 3 is now out en masse, so let’s have a look.

Riot Gear Rick & Guard Zombie

IMG_0171

It seems that if this series continues we will end up with an army of Rick Grimes capable of rivaling a horde of zombies. Luckily, he actually does sport quite a few looks over the course of the 100+ run of comics. This Rick is wearing the riot gear that Glenn discovered in the prison. Rick wore the gear while he went out investigating the fallen helicopter that led him to Woodbury. The figure comes with a helmet with movable visor, a nightstick, trusty axe, and holster with matching gun. I like Rick’s surprised/angry face. If we’re going to get a steady stream of Ricks, it’s nice that all of his faces are a little different. Rick’s two-pack partner is Guard Zombie. I’m assuming he’s a prison guard, but it’s possible he’s also a decent point guard. As with all the zombies we’ve gotten so far, he’s nicely detailed. He comes with half an arm, but you also get the option of making him fully armed. He has boots with heels, which are nice, but they don’t have a foot-hole so you can’t use the stand that he comes with.

Dexter & Dreadlock Zombie

IMG_0170

Dexter was one of the prisoners that Rick and company found locked in the cafeteria. The “good guys” treated him pretty poorly by unjustly locking him in a cell and accusing him of murder. So it’s ok to admit if you were kind of rooting for him when he turned a gun on Rick. Dexter is certainly not a character that I thought we would ever see a minimate of, but I absolutely love his inclusion. Hopefully it means that DST will leave no corner of the comic universe unturned. Dexter comes with a shotgun, holster, gun, and signature head tattoo. He’s accompanied by Dreadlock Zombie, a man forever defined by his haircut. Dreads attacked Rick as he and Glenn journeyed into the parking lot to siphon gas. He’s very cute with his missing eye and bloody arm stump. Once again, you get an extra arm in case you’re not into stumps.

IMG_0185

Prison Hershel & Farmer Zombie, Variant: Battle-Damaged Tyreese

IMG_0174

This set is exclusive to Comic Book Shops and Specialty Online stores. It includes Hershel all dressed up for prison and an overall-wearing Farmer Zombie. Battle-Damaged Tyreese is the variant set, so if you want both him and Hersh, you’re going to own two Farmboys. If I have any complaint with this line, it’s that they seem to have picked the least generic zombies to include with their variant sets (wave 1: Female Zombie, wave 2: Stabbed Zombie). This guy is pretty distinct with a scythe sticking out of his shoulder. Guard Zombie would have made a better army builder. That’s not to say that Farmboy isn’t nice. I really dig his tattered overalls and grimy hair.

Hershel is a pretty plain fellow. He looks like his comic equivalent, but he also looks a lot like Dale. He’s probably my least favorite of this wave. I’ll be looking forward to getting him in his farmer clothes in this year’s SDCC exclusive. Tyreese is an odd choice. This version is Tyreese in his final moment at the hands of the Governor. Some have mistaken it for the time when he fought it out with Rick, but if you look back at the comic, Tyreese hardly took any damage in that fight, and this figure’s face is pretty messed up. Nope, the only time Tyreese appeared this damaged and this shirtless was right before he lost his head. Tyreese is a very popular character. It seems really weird that this would be his first figure, especially since DST showed a street clothes Tyreese when they first announced the series. Hopefully we’ll see that version soon.

IMG_0184

The Walking Dead minimates keep trucking along with a strong eye for detail and pretty good character selection. Wave 4 is scheduled for release in August and will add some more characters from the prison arc, including Lori with baby, Woodbury defector, Alice, and the highly anticipated Governor minimate.

You can check out other WD minimate reviews here:
Wave 1, Wave 1 TRU, Wave 2, Wave 3 TRU, SDCC 2012 exclusive, Amazon exclusive

IMG_0182

IMG_0189

TRU Walking Dead Exclusives:
Glenn & Vest Zombie
Carol & Pole Zombie

Running from Zombies

This month sees the release of the newest wave of Walking Dead Minimates from Diamond Select Toys. I’ve reviewed previous sets and if you’ve read any of them, you know that I am in love with these little guys. As always this wave contains some figures that are found exclusively at Toys R Us and some that are available exclusively at online and specialty stores. I was able to get my hands on the TRU figures, which unfortunately have been difficult for collectors in the previous 2 waves. Here’s to hoping that these guys are selling well enough to increase supply.

Glenn & Vest Zombie

Glenn & Vest Zombie

This is Glenn’s second go-around as a TRU exclusive figure. The first one may be the hardest (or most expensive) WD minimate to find, so it was nice that DST gave us a new Glenn so soon. Not to mention that he’s a pretty popular character in both the comic and the show. This Glenn sports a sweatshirt and what is presumably a bald head under his cap. The figures captures Glenn’s look nicely from the period when he decided to stay at Hershel’s farm to have sex stay with Maggie. He’s also got a grittier, angrier face as opposed to his more fresh-faced earlier figure.

Vest Zombie is a pretty standard zombie. His distinction is his facial hair, which is either some serious muttonchops or an Abe Lincoln beard, it’s hard to tell. Either way I’m digging his nicely detailed zombie face. The other really nice touch on Vest is his torso damage. Instead of just painting it on, he’s actually got a small chunk taken out of his side (I’m not sure if you can see it clearly in the photo). This is an example of the tiny extras and attention to detail that make this line of figures fantastic for collectors.

Carol & Pole Zombie

Carol & Pole Zombie

If you’re a fan of the show, you know Carol as the increasingly badass, short-haired woman who lost her abusive husband and young daughter to zombies and who advocates for post-coital murder. This figure is not that Carol. Carol in the comics is slightly to moderately unstable and attempts to cling to a number of different characters in the book. Ultimately her instability leads to her self-inflicted demise. The version we get here is pre-prison, out on the road, Carol. She comes packaged with jacket and winter hat, but also has extra arms and hair for when she comes in out of the cold. Her face is fairly non-distinct, which is appropriate for her character. I’m hoping that later we get a slightly crazier-looking prison Carol.

Pole zombie is the zombie who got Carol after being brought inside the prison for research. Not as sexy as her name might imply, she comes with the pole and ropes that kept her captive in the comics, as well as a hungry look on her face. All of the zombie minimates are based on zombies that appeared in the comics, but Pole Zombie is one that most fans will easily recognize immediately. Without the pole, she can also stand in as a member of your now-growing minimate zombie horde. If you wanted to buy three more Carol’s, you could also use the poles to recreate the Woodbury arena. (What you do with your spare Carols is your own business)

Overall, these sets continue the high quality that DST has been giving us with The Walking Dead. Also in wave 3 are Riot Gear Rick, Dexter (the prison inmate), Hershel, and a beat-up Tyreese (all with various zombies). You can get Rick and Dexter at TRU as well, Hershel and Tyreese are specialty exclusives.

*The awesome damaged city backdrops are available at Luke’s Toy Store online.

Previous Walking Dead minimate reviews can be found herehere, here, here, and here.

Alternate Carol & Comparison Glenns

Death of Carol

Marvel Zombies Minimates

Marvel Zombies Minimates

Back in 2006, Marvel comics created a series in which its heaviest hitters turned into zombies and ravaged the world. While I personally felt that the idea of mixing zombies and super heroes could have been better managed in comic book form, the series did give us the opportunity to have zombie super hero action figures! Diamond Select Toys created some large figures as part of their Marvel Select line (I reviewed Spider-Man here), but they also included zombie figures into their Marvel Minimates line. There are nine figures (ten if you include Wasp, we’ll get to her later) that came in the form of one 5 pack, and two 2 packs.

5 Pack: Zombies Spider-Man, Captain America, Wolverine, Power Man, and Hulk (and Wasp)

Zombie Spider-Man and Captain America

While I enjoy all of these figures very much, some members of the 5-pack are definitely stronger than others. Spider-Man and Captain America are my favorites of the bunch. All of the figures include damage that is comic-accurate: Spider-Man’s got a busted leg, Cap’s head is open, Power Man’s ribs are exposed, etc. While Spider-Man is annoying as hell in the comic, his zombified minimate is perfect. The detail all around is excellent, including the use of clear plastic as part of his block body. Captain America is also meticulously detailed head to toe, I especially like his blood-stained shield. His body is beat-up, but not too zombified, so I suppose you could switch out a different Cap head to make simply a severely battle-damaged Cap figure.

Zombie Wolverine, Hulk, and Power Man

A little less impressive are the other three figures. Power Man is pretty well-done figure, although he’s certainly much less of a super hero powerhouse compared with his boxmates. Hulk looks decent, though the detail on his chest seems poor next to Spidey and Cap. The real loser here is Wolverine. Hands-down my least favorite of the bunch, something about him seems really off. His bulked up chest piece gives him an odd look. His face looks a bit odd, and with his mask on, looks even worse. As a bonus, the set also comes with the head of the Wasp. She’s got a small piece neck left, so you can’t place her on any other minimate bodies, but she’s also got a little handle built into her hair so that others can carry around. Not really a full figure, but definitely a cool little accessory. (Unfortunately, Wasp is one of my daughter’s favorite heroes and this is the only action figure I have of her.)

The set is really cool as a whole. It cost about 18 bucks when it first came out in 2007. Unfortunately, now if you want to get your hands you’ll probably have to pay at least $75. Whether or not you’re willing to pay that will probably depend on how much you like zombies, super heroes, and/or minimates.

Zombie Daredevil and Giant Man

Zombie Daredevil and Giant Man

Daredevil is a pretty well-known hero, though he did not have a big role in the Marvel Zombies comic books. Giant Man is a B-lister, but had a big role in the book. They were packed together as a 2007 San Diego Comic-Con exclusive. Daredevil sports a giant hole in his chest. The same clear plastic technique is used here, though it’s a bit less effective as there’s some visible load-bearing plastic in his little block body. Giant Man may be the least gory figure of the bunch, but he’s still a nice addition to the hero zombie horde.

Black Panther and Zombie Iron Man

Black Panther and Zombie Iron Man

The final two-pack was a Previews exclusive and contained The Black Panther and Iron Man. Black Panther is the only non-zombie of the group, though he may have the worst body damage. In the comic, Giant Man was taking his time with the Panther, eating a piece at a time before he escaped. As a result, Panther’s missing an arm and a leg. He comes with his makeshift crutch and a bloody foot bandage. He comes with a slip-on head cover, so he can appear masked or unmasked. I would have preferred an extra head piece instead of the slip-on, but he looks decent displayed either way. Iron Man gets blasted apart in the comics and the nice thing about his minimate form is that you can remove his lower body to make him comic-accurate. Iron Man’s biggest flaw is that his face plate looks too big and makes him look a bit goofy. It’s removable and looks better positioned to show his face, even if it doesn’t fit quite right in the peg holes.

The two exclusive packs are also a few years old. You can get them cheaper than the 5-pack, though they might feel incomplete on their own.

As always, the best thing about the minimate packs is there interchangeability. Now with The Walking Dead minimates available, you can combine their zombie worlds. Here’s Rick Grimes and Chris Redfield from Resident Evil fighting off the zombie heroes:

Zombie Busters vs. Super Zombies

Or you could supplement TWD zombies to create the Zombie Avengers!

Zombie Avenger Minimates

I’m not sure if they’re worth the prices you’d have to pay now to complete the whole set, but they are certainly cool figures to have as part of your collection.

Escape from Super Zombies