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The Rocksteady Three – TMNT Toys

Last year, I showed off all 3 versions of Bebop in action figure format. Now it’s time to show off Rocksteady the same way!

rocksteady_80s

Here’s the original figure, from the 1980s line. This is a genuine, vintage Rocksteady…though unfortunately, I’ve been unable to locate my original original figure, so this is one I was able to get for a very reasonable price online not too long ago.

rocksteady_2012

Then we have the newer version, as seen in the current animated series. I find this one to be a lot more angular and "rough" compared to the softer/"rounder" original. Like Bebop, this version of Rocksteady is Rocksteady in nickname, not the actual character–at least originally, prior to being dubbed "Rocksteady."

rocksteady_2016movie

And here’s the 2016 movie version, TMNT: Out of the Shadows. Like the movie Bebop, this one looks like some sort of biker or such, certainly a bruiser, and not at all like anyone I’d want to meet randomly…anywhere. Perhaps simply for having been a (CGI) character in a live-action movie, this version seems the most "believable" or "realistic" of the three, though each certainly has its place!

rocksteady_3

And here are all three versions side-by-side.

It’s rather interesting to me to consider that I’ve been around long enough, that I’ve been into TMNT long enough that there’ve been three entirely separate toy lines, such that I’ve found all three versions (originally) "on the pegs" at stores.

I’m not sure which version of these I’d prefer if I had to choose one…perhaps for nostalgia’s sake, I’d have to go with the original, even though I’m not a huge fan of the character, exactly.

Again as with Bebop, I’d much prefer to see a version based on the contemporary IDW comics series,where I feel like the characters have been handled the best of all the iterations.

I’m probably dreamin’, though!

Classic TMNT Toys: Rahzar and Walkabout

It’s kinda hard to believe that toys I remember getting new off the pegs in stores like Hills, Best, KMart, Toys R Us, Children’s Palace are now considered vintage. Harder still to believe that I still have some of the cards around, as well as the figures (yet even harder to believe that I have a couple cards for figures that I do not seem to have around anymore)!

This is the fourth (and final, for now) in a series of posts sharing these cards/figures, much as I’ve done with the newer 2012-present line.


Rahzar

clip_and_collect_profile_rahzar_back

Rahzar is one of three characters I primarily recognize of the “regular” figures produced based on TMNT II: The Secret of the Ooze. (The others being Tokka and Super Shredder). I believe the “Movie Star TMNT” figures may have also been out around this time–softer/rubbery figures that looked a lot more like the movie versions than the standard figures.

TMNT_cards_rahzar_front

Of course, the packaging reminds one that yep, this is definitely based on the movie character. Yet, something about the look (and accessories) make this seem like more an “adaptation” than anything else; an “alternate take” on the character.

TMNT_cards_rahzar_back

I don’t recall any of the accessories being used in the movie, which puts this version of Rahzar as more of a random mutant than a movie-character.

This card back is another one rich with showing a huge variety of figures, from turtles and their variants to allies to a decent assortment of villains.

class_tmnt_rahzar

The figure itself isn’t all that impressive to me, and I’d probably take it as just some generic wolf-mutant or quasi “werewolf” character if I didn’t actually know what it’s supposed to be from the start.


Walkabout

clip_and_collect_profile_walkabout_back

To a certain degree, I’m rather surprised to even have this character. Until I found a case of my old figures, and these cards last year, I would not have been able to tell you I had the figure. I vaguely remembered the figure/character existing, but would have thought it was some sort of déjà vu from seeing it at the store. Obviously, turned out it was because I actually had the figure.

TMNT_cards_walkabout_front

Though I’m not opposed to an international/non-U.S. character, nor have any problems with a mutant kangaroo…as a mid/late 30s adult, I do have some concern with the “stereotypes” presented by the character. I guess there are worse ones to be had, though…

TMNT_cards_walkabout_back

This is yet another figure that apparently had a mini-character included as an accessory…though as with others, it’s long since disappeared from my life.

I remember a friend having Groundchuck and Dirtbag…in retrspect, I definitely wish I’d also gotten those, or at least Groundchuck…I’d gladly take having Groundchuck over, say, Pizzaface.

class_tmnt_walkabout

This is another figure with the back/forward legs rather than a wider-range join to the body. It fits the character, though, allowing more of an appearance thing. The tail is kinda odd, but I imagine it works for what the sculptor(s) were going for, and minimizing the overall dimensions of the character.


What do you think of these two characters? Did you know that there’s a character in the current 2012-present animated series named Rahzar, that is some sort of “werewolf” character, and is itself a “secondary mutation” from a different character in the first season of the show?

While this series of posts has focused on figures where I have the original cards, would you be interested in spotlight posts on other vintage/classic TMNT figures, period, even without accompanying cards?

Feel free to chime in in the comments section of this post!

Classic TMNT Toys: Ray Fillet and Storage Shell Michelangelo

It’s kinda hard to believe that toys I remember getting new off the pegs in stores like Hills, Best, KMart, Toys R Us, Children’s Palace are now considered vintage. Harder still to believe that I still have some of the cards around, as well as the figures!

This is the third in a series of posts sharing these cards/figures, much as I’ve done with the newer 2012-present line.


Ray Fillet

clip_and_collect_profile_ray_fillet_back

This is another “early” figure for me, and also from early in my developing vocabulary. I originally read/pronounced the character’s name “Ray Fill-eht” rather than “Ray Fill-ay.”

I remember recognizing the similarities in this character, and a character in one of those “storybooks” that were out in the early 1990s, that I later learned were actually based on issues of the Archie-published TMNT Adventures. This Ray Fillet was the character appearing as Man Ray and one of the “founders” of the Mighty Mutanimals. There’s a much different-looking version appearing in contemporary IDW-published TMNT comics.

TMNT_cards_ray_fillet_front

Like many of the other figures, this was another “goofy”-ish mutant, rather silly and hardly anything “deep.” I’ve more recently learned that apparently a number of creators that were part of Mirage Studios at the time were encouraged to create/submit characters as possible action figures when the toy line hit it big, which certainly explains some of the random-ish characters.

As for me, I certainly appreciate that many of them were incorporated into comics that gave them more depth, even beyond anything granted in “an episode” or so in the animated series.

TMNT_cards_ray_fillet_back

I haven’t a clue where “Fish Stix” wound up, but I do remember making the connection that this was apparently a Glublub…though it was Bubbla that made the impression in the comics.

class_tmnt_ray_fillet

Here’s the actual figure! One of the ear pieces is broken off, and the color-change elements of the chest and “shirt” are long since faded/gone-screwy. But it’s my genuine, original copy of the figure, still around to this day some 25+ years after getting it!


Storage Shell Michelangelo

clip_and_collect_profile_storage_shell_mike_back

I’m particularly interested these days whenever I see the spelling “Michaelangelo” from this time period. Apparently Eastman and Laird goofed on the spelling–It’s actually Michelangelo–but their error was picked up and carried through half the character’s existence, I believe only eventually corrected as of 2001 or so when Laird relaunched a TMNT comic series.

I remember the Donatello with Storage Shell figure as the first/only of the turtles with that feature…then later the other three got the treatment. This was one of the ones that at the time I did get a “complete set,” really appreciating the molds/paintjobs (though I wouldn’t’ve had the phrasing to describe it as such back then). In retrospect, I suspect it was that the figures were pretty standard-ish–no fancy costumes, no externally-weird “theme” or variant. If one didn’t know the shells opened, the figures just look like slightly brighter/better-colored versions of the standard characters!

TMNT_cards_storage_shell_mike_front

To this day, I can’t begin to explain the “storage shell” notion for the actual characters. As toys that come with a bunch of miniscule accessories, I can appreciate that this was a way to have a little storage compartment to keep a bunch of them handy for play time…but showing the character in action with a shell open on a hinge is just kinda creepy…especially after the story in the IDW comics a couple years ago where Donatello was horribly injured when Rocksteady sledge-hammered his shell…

TMNT_cards_storage_shell_mike_back

I miss the days of these individualized cards with figures. The fronts are customized to the specific figure, as is the back–detailing included accessories (that I believe were quite visible through the bubble on the front) as well as the profile section.

I also miss having large multi-wave assortments displayed, to see what’s (been) available and exists out there. Contemporary toys showing the 4-6 figures within the same/current “wave” is ok-ish, but there’s something pleasantly rich about seeing so many allies and villains chaaracters just on the card…and it certainly did wonders for making me want more figures as a kid, giving me something (always) to be “hunting” for!

class_tmnt_storage_shell_mike

Here’s the figure itself. Probably my only real “complaint” to the color scheme and such is the pink gums to the exaggerated grimace this version of the characters had. It just makes it seem all the more exaggerated, though at least definitely served to differentiate from the “original” version of the standard figures…especially since there was no special “costume” or such to otherwise set these apart when the shell is closed into place.


I think it’s safe to say that these are two of my favorite figures at this point, in looking back. The sculpts on the storage shell turtles, and Ray Fillet (though I prefer the Man Ray version of the character).

Next up, to wrap up this mini “series” of posts, I’ll show off TMNT II character Rahzar and what I consider to be a “later” random mutant, Walkabout.

Did you ever have any of the “storage shell” turtles? While I don’t recall if this concept was revisited during the run of the toys based on the 2003 animated series, “storage shell” versions were released a couple years ago for the 2012-present iterations of the characters.

Are there any classic TMNT toys of characters you’d want to get just for the sake of having the character?

Respond in the comments section for this post!

Classic TMNT Toys: Mutant Military TMNT

It’s kinda hard to believe that toys I remember getting new off the pegs in stores like Hills, Best, KMart, Toys R Us, Children’s Palace are now considered vintage. Harder still to believe that I still have some of the cards around, as well as the figures.

This is the second in a series of posts sharing these cards/figures, much as I’ve done with the newer 2012-present line.


Lieutenant Leo

clip_and_collect_profile_lieutenant_leo_back

I was all about the characters in the late ’80s/early ’90s, and if I couldn’t get unique characters, I chased after “variants” of the main characters. In many cases I only got one or two (where they even had “full sets” for a singular theme), but the “Mutant Military” set is one where I got at least three, and current have three; I don’t recall if I ever had the Donatello figure.

I find this particular line a bit more questionable as an adult, particularly given life the last 15+ years and the way my views on the (U.S.) military, military stuff in general, and the subject of “war” have changed and developed.

I’m not fond of just tossing these characters into “military gear” and pushing military “stereotypes” or such, when very real people risk their lives serving their country. But then, NOT being military myself, I have no idea, honestly, if these would actually BE appreciated or not.

TMNT_cards_lieutenant_leo_front

Somehow I find it highly doubtful figures like this would get made nowadays. And having fictional characters like this shown waving a United States flag, with the red/white/blue and white stars theme to the packaging?

Yeah, not all that likely these days, I don’t think.

TMNT_cards_lieutenant_leo_back

Unlike some of the other card backs, I find it interesting that the other figures shown are nothing but turtles variants. No non-turtle allies and no villains.

class_tmnt_lieutenant_leo

The figure itself, decked out in military gear.


Midshipman Mike

clip_and_collect_profile_midshipman_mike_back

As a military-themed figure, and this one apparently being the Navy figure, I’m probably least thrilled with it. My dad served 21 years in the U.S. Navy, and my grandfather was also U.S. Navy.

The language with this figure strikes me a lot more as “pirate adventure” than something reflecting a contemporary (even in the early 1990s) U.S. military thing.

TMNT_cards_midshipman_mike_front

The eyepatch puts me in mind also of “pirates” and/or playing off the notion of Popeye.

I also stand by my statement on the Leo figure that having the turtles waving a U.S. flag would, sadly, probably not happen today, nor the color scheme of this packaging.

TMNT_cards_midshipman_mike_back

I’m somewhat interested at seeing the “mini figures” that were included as accessories with regular figures–this one had the Sewer Sea Gull, which is rather generic…compared with more important/significant “accessory” characters such as Joe Eyeball with Muckman, or Screwloose with Wingnut.

Also note that–keeping consistent for the wave–all other figures shown here on the card back are turtles variants.

Finally, this is a figure whose card even retains the peg-hole piece, apparently never got completely separated from the card. I understand this is a definite rarity, and a coveted thing in modern toy collecting with figures that are typically sold/displayed from pegs in stores. Other than “noting” that, I’m not getting into that matter at present–it’s not a thing that I myself care about with buying toys!

class_tmnt_midshipman_mike

The figure itself is a bit odd for one of the turtles…the legs seem to be on a different sort of connector to the body, with more of a forward/back poseability rather than the more rounded “ball” joint the regular figures tend to have. I suppose it lends itself to the figure looking like he’s walking across a ship’s deck or something, but whatever.


Green Beret Raph

clip_and_collect_profile_green_beret_raph_back

The more I “analyze” these cards and truly take in the words and such of ’em as a mid/late 30s adult, the more I am certain these would not be produced today…or at least, certainly not without some huge protest, petition campaign, and other scandal/controversy!

It’s also interesting as an adult to “read between the lines” here at what could be taken from the profile, but also to see how “real life” is glossed over to keep it aimed as it was toward kids.

TMNT_cards_green_beret_raph_front

Again with the flag and packaging color scheme…as well as the cut-but-unpunched peg-hole on this one. As another figure I apparently got from Hills, I can only imagine I found these sitting on a shelf, perhaps placed there at the time if there wasn’t room on the pegs. (There was once a time when stores had dozens of pegs, seemingly entire aisles dedicated to TMNT product, primarily these figures…and they’d be fully-stocked, not just 1-3 figures loosely placed on each of 3-4ish pegs!)

TMNT_cards_green_beret_raph_back

And another figure with a mini-character included as an accessory…though again, a rather forgettable/insignificant one…though I’d be rather entertained at having it now as an adult!

class_tmnt_green_beret_raph

While I can’t speak to the quasi-camo pattern to this figure…at least the character fits the uniform, with plenty of green, and the muted darker red for Raphael.


Next up, I’ll look at a couple of my favorite classic figures, Ray Fillet and Storage Shell Mikey!

If you’re military, or know someone who is–what do you think of these figures? And if you’re non-military, same question?

Feel free to leave a response in the comments section of this post!

Classic TMNT Toys: Baxter Stockman and Make My Day Leo

It’s kinda hard to believe that toys I remember getting new off the pegs in stores like Hills, Best, KMart, Toys R Us, Children’s Palace are now considered vintage. Harder still to believe that I still have some of the cards around, as well as the figures (yet even harder to believe that I have a couple cards for figures that I do not seem to have around anymore)!

This is the first in a series of posts sharing these cards/figures, much as I’ve done with the newer 2012-present line.


Baxter Stockman

clip_and_collect_profile_baxter_stockman_back

While I’ve eventually given in and "accepted" it for nostalgia, I am not a fan of Baxter Stockman as a white guy (he was black in the original comics!) nor as a mutant fly. I think to me he just comes off as rather 2-dimensional or "just another mutant" as a fly, rather than as a brilliant (if deranged) scientist after his own goals and clashing with the turtles when they try to stop him.

TMNT_cards_baxter_stockman_front

Of course, I didn’t "know any better" at the time when I first got this figure. It was just another character, one that a friend had and I wanted my own, so eventually got it. Here’s the front of the card…

TMNT_cards_baxter_stockman_back

…and here’s the back. At this point, the figures still had the "origin of the turtles" at the top, along with the "ad" for the canister of "ooze" stuff that came with a miniature un-mutated turtle. I’m not sure if it’s déjà vu or what, but I simultaneously think I’d gotten one of these, yet wonder if it was just that I had wanted it but never actually got one.

There were still very few figures at the point this one was out, with Baxter, Ace Duck, and Genghis Frog (and Krang?) as new allies and enemies additions.

You can also see the "hole" where I’d actually cut out the "pizza point" from this figure. I seem to recall having done that with a bunch of my earliest figures…as well as having cut out the "clip and collect" profile cards…though when I took a stack of them with me to school one day, I lost them. That may be why I apparently kept the entire card backs on later figures.


Make My Day Leo

clip_and_collect_profile_make_my_day_leo_back

I vaguely remember this figure, though it’s one that I do not currently seem to have in my on-hand collection of my original figures.

While I did get several "variant sets" of all four turtles, when I only got one from a given "set," I tended to go with Leonardo, who was originally my favorite turtle of the four.

I find it amusing enough as an adult to see various "references" that were over my head as a kid, such as the whole "Make. My. Day." thing, or the Humphrey Bogart references, etc.

TMNT_cards_make_my_day_leo_front

I kinda like the bit there on the left…the "Go ahead!" part playing into the figure’s name. Go ahead! Make my day! Timeline-wise, the character "manhandling" Dirtbag there at the top places it around the time of that character, Groundchuck, and Chrome Dome.

TMNT_cards_make_my_day_leo_back

…And the back of the card strikes me as being from the height of the toy line, with this large array of ancillary characters–particularly on the villains side of things. I see a number of figures that I’d love to get ahold of to this day–though I’m absolutely not willing to "shell" out big dollars for them…I’m not that sort of collector.


Next up, I’ll get into the "Mutant Military" TMNT figures…and those I have the actual figures for, as well!

Do you remember either of the figures in this post? Did you have either of them? How about other figures shown on the card back(s)?

Feel free to leave feedback in the comments for this post!

The Bebop Three – TMNT Toys

Cleaning out a storage room, I recently came across one of my oldest original TMNT action figures: Bebop.

I’d love to re-find my Rocksteady, as that was THE first figure I got, back in those dark days when numerous stores that didn’t even deal in toys had the TMNT figures, but no one seemed to have ANY of the Turtles themselves.

But that’s probably more a topic for some other post.

For now, I present the three incarnations of Bebop that I am aware of presently represented in action figure form (and not counting the oversized supposedly super-poseable figures or mini/vinyl figures…just the "standard" action figures).

bebop_three

Front and center is the original, who honestly–the more I look at him–just looks really weird to me at this point. On the far right is the 2016 live-action movie version. And back on the far left is the "current cartoon" version.

It’s interesting enough to me to compare the three. The original is…well, the original. A new character created specifically for the then-new cartoon series, a mutant/animal character to be non-human, for the physical violence (same as the Foot being robots, so it was not actually ninja animals beating up on humans). Mutant warthog, various accessories and such playing off the "wackiness" of the toy line, etc. Aside from the face, a muscular, bulky character that one probably would NOT really want to mess with.

The movie version takes the bulk to a different extreme, giving the image of say, a significantly overweight biker or such with this huge beer gut and too-small vest with no undershirt…if not just some "fat slob" and such (foregoing any comparison to bikers).

The current cartoon version is a much smaller, slimmer and aerodynamic image that retains the mohawk and gshades but otherwise quite a different interpretation.

Forgive the possible mental imagery, but the cartoon version seems to answer the question of "what if 1980s Bebop and Movie Bebop had a kid?"

Meanwhile, I would love to have "regular sized" TMNT action figures based on the IDW version of the characters. Those comics are what finally got me to "accept" Bebop and Rocksteady as "valid" characters as an adult, having come to see them as nothing but ridiculous, pointless, and dumb prior to the new IDW incarnation.

After 12 Years…Finally: The Complete Classic TMNT!

Twelve years ago, Summer 2004, I was excited at the (then-finally) release of the original episodes of the "classic" TMNT cartoon on dvd. Prior to this, there was only old VHS tapes (That were hardly complete runs) or less-than-stellar downloads and such.

So when a dvd of the first season–the original 5-episode "mini-series"–was released, I was stoked! (Even though I still prefer the 2003 series above the 1980s and current shows).

Not too long after there were a number of other releases, as Volume Two and Volume Three and so on…simply collecting a few more episodes at a time, but stuff was spotty…and then there was crap like a season being released as four parts, four different units to purchase instead of just one, and so on. More recently, stores have seemed spotty on carrying stuff (by "stores" I primarily mean Target and Walmart with a bit of Toys R Us thrown in) with a mix of the "volumes" and "seasons". Finding them for around $5 each, I’d (over a period of months) acquired seasons 10, 8, and 9) after buying the season 3 set (which duplicated several of the early "volumes"–and the discs actually still bear the "volume" labels).

I was thrilled recently fo find a full Season 7 unit (containing the entire season, not just a "slice" of the season) for a good price (about $15).

Of course…that still left me with a gaping, expensive hole: I had seasons 1-3 and 7-10…but no 4, 5, or 6.

tmnt_classic_series_full

Presumably to capitalize on the new live-action movie, Walmart seems to have at least temporarily stocked more TMNT stuff…including new double-season editions.

Over the weekend, when I literally came face-to-face with the Season Four box set and then spotted the double-season edition with Season 5 and Season 6 and realized I could complete the series for a "mere" $25, I jumped on it. (In an age when single 2-hour films cost $20-$25+…to get 3 seasons for that same pricing was fantastic!)

And now, "only" 12 YEARS later, I finally own the entire "classic" Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series.

I’ve also "kept up with" the releases of the current series…and may "splurge" on the live-action series now…as that’ll just leave the 2003 series missing. I have some of those dvds…but hardly the full series, and those were horrible as they only had 3-5 episodes each (even splitting a 5-part story labeled parts 1-5 onto two different releases!).

Time and "patience," I guess!

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