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80th Anniversary Batman Imaginext Singles

After about 4 weeks and more than two-dozen Target visits, I had finally managed to get the Neca Bebop and Rocksteady two-pack a few weeks back. I feel like that was ONE OF the, if not THE most hassle I’ve ever had finding a particular toy at non-scalper prices. I’m not after first-editions, they aren’t SDCC-exclusives, etc.

ANYWAY.

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I’d found out about a series of Imaginext Batman figures for the character’s 80th anniversary (WHY is there virtually NOTHING for Superman, but EVERYTHING for BATMAN?!?).

A few days after learning of their existence, I opted to go ahead and check for them at the local Walmart.

Which ONLY had 2 of the figures–the Green Lantern one and the Justice one.

Of course, the one I most wanted was the Knightquest one!

For the price, I went ahead and got the two, figuring I’d regret it later if I didn’t.

I also decided to visit a second Walmart since the one I was at first ALSO did NOT have the only other thing I’d gone in for (treating the figures as a secondary objective).

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The second Walmart had all 5, so I was able to get the 3 I was unable to at the first, and have what I believe is the complete set. (IF there are more than 5 in the series, I am blissfully unaware!).

And I was simply amazed at the fact of being able to go out–ONE evening, a mere TWO visits to a store–and actually being able to find what I was looking for!

EXTREMELY refreshing after the frustration and discouragement trying to get the Bebop and Rocksteady pack!

I am NOT a "thrill of the hunt" kinda person for most things…especially when they’re ARTIFICIALLY-LIMITED and such or seem like some one-off. With toys–figures, statues, whatever–if it’s cool, if it’s desirable such that I want one…I just want the publisher to LET ME give them my money and be done.

Anyway…these remind me a bit of HotWheels in there being this mini-set and there being several figures, with a cardback featuring some cover or other piece of art that the figure represents.

But for me personally…these are much more appealing, as they can be opened and displayed with other small figures without having to worry about them rolling off a shelf or such.

If I’d gone for only 2 or 3 of these, I’d probably leave out the Green Lantern and Zur-En-Arr ones and possibly the Justice one. But not being terribly expensive, and not being able to change the past, I’m happy to have all 5.

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Deluxe Crisis Catch-Up

I splurged a bit recently to play catch-up on some Crisis stuff…partly inspired by the CW‘s "Arrow-verse" crossover event of 2019-2020.

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I’d snagged the Crisis on Infinite Earths Deluxe Edition some years back, highly impressed with its sheer size and (relatively) cheap price FOR its size. Looks like that was specifically 2015, and I’d bought it as a "birthday present" to myself at the time.

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But then I’d happened across a copy of the Crisis on Infinite Earths Companion, vol. 1 for 50% off. And then with some disappointment over (lack of) good Black Friday sales and such, I ended up splurging on the 2nd and 3rd COIE Companion volumes.

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They make quite a great-looking set, at least to my eye! And I much Much MUCH prefer volumes like these to a single-volume "omnibus"! Imagine having all 3 Companion volumes as a single book! Sure, it might be the price of only 2 of the volumes. But these are books that I’ll actually be able to READ without breaking my wrists!

Plus, I also won’t have to worry about these self-destructing on a bookshelf under their own weight!

Now, the next thing to investigate is some Crisis on Multiple Earths hardcovers. I’m not sure off the top of my head how many paperbacks there are/were under that title…I think 6-7. And I’d imagine those could easily fit into 3 hardback volumes that would sure be pretty sitting next to these!

Time will tell, though!

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The Weekly Haul: Week of December 18, 2019

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Just about the end of the year…and this might be the FIRST year I’ve actually "successfully" documented every week’s "main" haul (of NEW comics). December 18th may well be the "last week" of new comics for ME as I don’t think there’s REALLY much of anything coming out December 26th (25th being Christmas) and the publishers (especially DC) seemed to really load the week here.

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THREE big endings this week (just with stuff I bought…I’m pretty sure there were a number of others as well!).

Tom King‘s run on Batman (and City of Bane within) ends with the 85th issue here. Supposedly King‘s story will continue into/wrap up in a Batman/Catwoman series, but apparently there’s going to be at least a 4-month wait with nothing showing through March 2020 solicitations, making April 2020 the earliest for that to pick up.

Doomsday Clock finally has its final issue, #12, some 25 or so months after #1 and 13 or so after originally intended. I skipped a middle chunk of issues but opted to get #12, as I’d gotten #1 and wanted to read it for myself to see how it ended.

And I should have just waited for the collected volume for Batman: Last Knight on Earth…I have yet to read #1, and here’s the 3rd and final issue…so why not have just waited?

Hellblazer #2 marks the 3rd issue in this new iteration. The one-shot and #1 were good overall and I’m digging the new Vertigo-esque take on the character after years of stuff being watered down. I’m pretty sure the writer had a run on the original Hellblazer series as well, so that’d fit!

While I’d been curious about Millar/Netflix and their Project X-Mas thing, speculation I’d read indicated a host of things that it could be. My initial thought awhile back was American Jesus/Chosen but I dismissed that, figuring it to be another title like Fell that was SO good and promising and I enjoyed and…figured it’d never be heard from again. So when Bleeding Cool spoiled what the book was, I emailed the comic shop to have a copy held. I remember getting the original Chosen issues, and then buying the American Jesus tpb…so definitely looking forward to reading this new mini!

And continuing with the facsimile/replica editions, Eternals #1.

Finally, though I got it the weekend before, the Crisis on Infinite Earths 100-page giant issue, from Walmart. Because somehow I’d come to believe IT was to be another "exclusive," so grabbed it when I saw it…but apparently it’s not. Of course, if I waited for the non-Walmart edition, I believe I’d STILL be waiting, so there’s that.


All in all, not that huge a week; albeit some more expensive-than-usual issues.

I’m mostly hoping that 2020 is a more focused year; with (hopefully) consistently-smaller weeks in the way of NEW new stuff. If I get to it by year’s end, I’ll hopefully detail some thoughts for this blog heading into the new year, as well as some current "grail" comics/specific-issues goals for the 2020 hunt, and so on.

For now…instead of scheduling this post to go live tomorrow morning (Christmas!) I’m just going to send it live tonight. Because why not? These are more for me than anything else, and I’m my own "boss" as the sole proprietor of this blog…

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Robin #500: Marvel Math-ing 80 Years of The Boy Wonder

So, apparently in 2020, DC is going to publish a $9.99 one-shot celebrating 80 years of Robin. Whereas in 2018, they did so for Superman with Action Comics #1000. And in 2019, they did so for Batman with Detective Comics #1000. And coming up in January and February 2020, they’re doing so with Wonder Woman #750 and Flash #750…all characters with present ongoing titles.

I’ve long cut DC some slack with the numbering on Action and Detective compared to Marvel‘s titles, as both have ONE "lapse" in numbering, which makes it relatively easy to slot the issues into their proper spots.

But now their doing the same for Wonder Woman and Flash requires a bit more work due to gaps and shorter runs and (at least with Wonder Woman) prior "legacy renumbering."

And with DC pulling other stuff that’s caused me to almost entirely back away while eyeing moving further away–and seeming to be following Marvel‘s lead in a negative (to me) manner…fine.

So WHAT IF..DC did "Marvel Math" for Robin, heading toward this 80th anniversary thing?

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The way I have it figured…they should be able to give us a giant-sized Robin #500, celebrating 500 issues featuring Robin (Dick, Tim, Stephanie, and Damian, at least) as well as the 80th anniversary of the character.

Even nearly 17 years later, I still don’t care for what they’ve done with Jason/Red Hood…and I wouldn’t count the Red Hood stuff as that’s been more of a team title (to my knowledge) and I don’t know enough about the title(s) and the character, nor has Jason operated AS Robin in the time that Tim or Dick have had titles of their own.

Now, granted, MY math here gets a bit screwy and isn’t entirely in the best order, and there’s certainly overlap, particularly in the original Robin and Nightwing ongoing titles. But frankly…if Marvel can screw around with grabbing random stuff to get to certain numbers, then I’m going to do the same here.

Perhaps my math is off slightly somewhere, but regardless…at this point, I feel like the Robin 80 Years 100-Page Super Spectacular or whatever it’s going to be called–with "decades variants" and the works–really ought to just simply be Robin #500.

What do you think? Would you be "for" a Robin #500?

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The Weekly Haul: Week of November 6, 2019

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I’m pretty sure this was the cheapest Wednesday I’ve had in MONTHS…and that INCLUDES buying an Image Compendium volume!

Let’s get to the week’s books..!

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I’d totally forgotten about the "acetate covers" or whatever they’re called. DC has really lost me overall, so the only thing redeeming about it is…even WITH this "fancy cover" on Batman #82 (or is that City of Bane #82???) it still carries a $3.99 price point. Small "wins," right?

New issue of TMNT: Urban Legends…we’re well past the halfway-point for this series, and just a couple issues shy of where I’d gotten in on the original Image run of TMNT for a couple issues. Looking forward to catching up on the reading and getting to that point…as well as the series finally getting a proper ending of sorts. The primary drawback to me is that I still want to get the original Image issues…but ALL anyone ever seems to have at conventions and such IS the IDW stuff, be it the current ongoing, color classics, or whatever.

Spawn #302 puts us 2 issues past the big one, and we’re back to the regular price point of $2.99 that got me onto the title a few years ago. I’m getting REALLY sick of the variants even on this title…but at least with it "only" being $2.99, even if I get a variant, I can still get multiple copies for the price of a single Marvel.

We have yet another DC Dollar Comics release in Flashpoint #1. This one seems rather RECENT to me to be reprinting, even though–scarily enough to think about–it’s been 8 1/2 years since it first saw print! I suppose it’s fitting for this week with the City of Bane issue, given the Flashpoint Batman’s involvement in the ongoing stuff.

And the CORRECT-PAGE-ORDER edition of the DC Dollar Comics Batman #497 is out. I didn’t bother to try to exchange the original. I still had bought a $1 comic, and for "only" $1 I’m willing to buy it again, still for the nostalgia and all that. Of course, it’s gonna be a crappy time for back-issue buyers with no indicator on the cover that anything’s different or amiss about the issue.

The biggest surprise of the week for me was this Image Firsts Compendium vol. 3. I saw it and picked it up to look at–a curiosity. It’s been several years since I’d seen one of these as a new publication. I recalled having the first volume, so for "only" $5.99 I figured I’d add it to my collection. It reprints 8 or so #1 issues from Image, in a handy single volume and cheaper than even the Image Firsts $1 editions if you want "everything." AND when I got home and checked my existing collection…I DO already have both earlier volumes, so I’m adding vol. 3 to my collection without any gaps!

Finally, we have this week’s Comic Shop News, this time spotlighting Captain America: The End, which I believe is one of a bunch of pending one-shots giving more characters the The End treatment–a limited story to provide an "ending" to the character(s) in question. This is capitalizing on series from YEARS back like Hulk: The End, Wolverine: The End, and the 18-issue trilogy of 6-issue arcs making up X-Men: The End. Of course, these are sure to be $4.99+ an issue with too many splash pages and such…over-hype and under-delivery that turns me off to so much of Marvel‘s fare.

I’m not their target audience, so I just won’t buy what I don’t care for…more power to those who want the stuff and get what they pay for.

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The Death and Return of Superman "Gift Set"

I bought The Death of Superman on blu-ray last year when it came out…though it was heading into a less-than-ideal point in my personal life, so I never got around to/bothering to post about it.

Then in January, I was able to attend one of the Fathom Events theatrical showings of a double-feature of both The Death of Superman and the then-yet-to-be-released Reign of the Supermen; which I detailed in my post Reign of the Supermen…26 Years From Page to Screen.

Reign of the Supermen actually came out on home media the week of January 30, 2019.

And then, like with The Dark Knight Returns a couple/several years ago, they’ve gone and jammed the two films into one epic presentation. And me being me, and like with TDKR, I bought into the shiny new re-issue of what I already had.

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For their part, it helps that the thing has an awesome-looking figurine of Steel. I’m not keen on their marking it as a "gift set," but that more accurately describes this boxed edition that comes with the figurine, over just getting the movie(s) itself.

I nearly bought it in person, but discovered that if I went to the trouble of physically picking it off the shelf and carrying it to the front of the store and checking myself out…that would be one price. Or, by placing an online order at a Walmart I was going to be at for groceries anyway and having an employee track it down, check it out, bag and tag it, and then when I was ready, go find it and take it to await my showing up to grab it from a kiosk, I saved $5.

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First thing I did with this was get it open to get the Steel figure out; I have not yet dug in to the rest. It’s also interesting to me that they apparently include a blu-ray of Superman: Doomsday. I’ll be curious to see if that has the retrospective/documentary on it. I’d love to have THAT digitally.

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Out of the "gift box," the movie comes with the usual cardboard slipcover…and of course, the Steel figurine!

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The figurine is way bigger in this photo (at least on MY screen as I type this) than the physical object. I love how this looks…the contrast of the dark grey with the red cape! And I didn’t even notice the (glowing?) blue eyes until I took this photo.

Maybe I’ll do a random post in the near future showing this figurine with the "battle-damaged" Superman one that came with The Death of Superman last year.

I’m curious as to whether the upcoming (in just the next couple weeks, I think!) Wonder Woman animated movie will come with a character figurine. And perhaps along with the aforementioned Superman figurine, I ought to do a post showing my whole collection of figurines that have come with these DC animated features.

As always, and broken record that I am…time will tell.

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The Weekly Haul Catch-Up: July 10 to August 14, 2019

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Once again, it’s been a few weeks since posting! Maybe soon I’ll get back into a regular rhythm of things with at least 1 less distraction (11 seasons of The Big Bang Theory) behind me!


Week of July 10, 2019

All the way back to early July 2019 to start this re-catchup journey!

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A very heavy-DC week, with the only Marvel stuff being reprints of old material.


Week of July 17, 2019

Another standard-ish week…

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Another replica edition and a reprint from Marvel. I opted to get Vampirella #1 on being written by Priest; the cover’s rather off-putting compared to the other stuff, and has long been one of the reasons I’ve NOT bought the title.

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Somehow the image from Comic Shop News of Vampirella with Red Sonja seems more…"normal"…-ish?

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Runners had finally come in from a Kickstarter!

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Snagged some Dreadstar from bargain bins for a great price! And far superior pricing to a Kickstarter earlier this year that I bailed on.

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Legend of the Shaders is a Kickstarter I’d been looking forward to, and was glad to get! "The Harp Twins" also do some great harp music covers of popular songs…some of my recent favorite instrumentals!

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More bargain bin books. Where was TwoMorrows Publishing when I was writing papers in college and needed citable "sources"?!?

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A batch of the Walmart DC Giants


Week of July 24, 2019

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A surprisingly Marvel-heavy week. I decided to throw in with the Hickman X-Men reboot to give stuff a shot. Marvels Epilogue was expensive for what it is, but goes with the Annotated series. And another X-Men replica edition adds to my collection of such things.

Behind on reading and not one bit impressed with the Year of the Villain stuff. DC just did a similar thing a year or two before the New 52, to say nothing of Underworld Unleashed back in the ’90s. I’d rather pick up ’90s comics than pay $5 an issue for modern stuff.

And then just on the offchance that I’d get around to "finally" getting/reading the original White Knight, figured pick up the new one so I wouldn’t have to "hunt" later.

And I couldn’t pass up at least a first issue of another Archie vs. Predator as the concept is just so ludicrous! Or at least, it WAS before Riverdale and the line’s reboot and whatnot. I think the original series is FINALLY available in paperback, nearly 3 years AFTER a hardcover was out.

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Another $2 newsstand copy of Superman #75.

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I finally got my Munchkin collection re-organized. At one point I thought I wanted to condense to a couple of their "monster box" things, but realized I’d rather just have the games obvious as to what they are, and NOT have to lug most of a collection around just to be able to play any given version.

Quite a shelf, though.


Week of July 31, 2019

Another X-Men week…

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And another couple newsstand Superman #75s. Because I could.

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And I’m iffy on the whole Dawn of X but time will tell.

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I finally "pulled the trigger" on the Armageddon 2001 saga and ordered the issues.

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We’ll see when/if I ever get around to actually reading the thing, but at least this way I can add the story to a "complete events" box I have with Eclipso: The Darkness Within, Bloodlines, and Zero Hour: Crisis in Time.


Week of August 7, 2019

And now into August…the current month at least!

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I opted to take a chance on Absolute Carnage #1. I was then glad I did when I read on Bleeding Cool that if one redeemed the digital code before 8/20, they’d get a "director’s cut" edition of the issue with some more extras including a variant covers gallery.

However, when I went to redeem my code, I found that my copy of the issue had no code whatsoever–apparently a misprint (the sticker didn’t get added to the issue). While Marvel Support provided me a code via Twitter, it only gave me a "basic edition," and when I pursued it, was told that that’s all that came with the issue.

So a digital-only director’s-cut edition for $2 MORE than PRINT is out there, and I feel severely shorted, with frustration toward Bleeding Cool AND Marvel on the matter such that I’m all the MORE determined to NOT buy into this event beyond having already WASTED $8.

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I came across new TMNT toys at a Target and found that I really like the stylized look, especially compared to my overall distaste for the Rise of the TMNT look.

I opted to buy Raphael as my "modern favorite" of the turtles (my "classic favorite" had been Leonardo as a kid).

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The back of the box…

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My mistake, though, was in thinking I’d be happy with JUST the one turtle. I wound up spending an afternoon visiting several Targets to locate the other 3 turtles.

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Leonardo.

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Donatello.

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Michelangelo.


Week of August 14, 2019

And finally, catching up to this past week…

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Another replica edition in X-Factor #87. Mostly I’d consider it a 25-cent book, but I’d still rather pay $3.99 for it than most of what Marvel is putting out presently. AND show that I support these reprints MORE than I do the bulk of their current output!

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The "final" batch of Walmart issues…at least as exclusives. Apparently there could be another 1 or two of the Superman one, but otherwise these are all "rebooting" AGAIN, and rather than the entire package being exclusively Walmart-only, apparently there will be Walmart-only COVERS as well as the retail giant getting a couple weeks to a month’s head-start on comic shops. But rather than 4 or 6 titles, suddenly DC is leaping to 10 or 12 with an eye on 20ish. Which seems a bit of overkill to me, and has me thinking I might throw in the towel on these.

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Here’s what 14 months of the things look like together on a shelf, though. Way too much reading yet to do anyway…plenty for a "rainy day" or such!


And this catches me up to current…I think I’ve actually thus far managed to document every week’s haul of 2019 so far. ‘Bout the only thing I’ve managed to keep up with, it seems.

Of course, as this post goes live, tomorrow–August 21–sees another new week of comics.

As I fall further behind in my reading, and that compounds itself.

The hobby becomes more "chore" week over week.

C’est la vie.

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