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Legacy Thunder Megazord–Power Up!

Toys R Us has been around my entire life. I have plenty of memories of the store–and toys bought there; going back at least to the late-1980s, and the initial Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles craze. Probably my earliest memory of it specifically is getting a Baxter Stockman (the fly) figure, and being annoyed when we were stuck at a train crossing for what seemed like forever to me as that little kid waiting to get home and open his new toy.

I hold no joy whatsoever in the chain closing–I remember being glad that my "local" store–several "local-ish" stores, for that matter–NOT being on the initial list of closures a few months back. Selfishly, for sentimentality at least, and nostalgia…but also for those employees that would be out of jobs. Recently laid-off myself…that’s not something I’d truly wish on anyone!

And me getting something at a significant discount? That’s by no means worth someone’s job, their livelihood and all that. So much more I could say in this vein–but let’s leave it that what I say is in context of the fact that I cannot change that the chain filed bankruptcy and is going out of business. I have been a regular Toys R Us customer even before the closing–albeit a bit discerning, when I knew I could get the most basic figures for the most basic/common toy lines cheaper at Walmart or Target. But plenty of the "adult collectibles" and such were only at Toys R Us. The worthwhile Power Rangers stuff–the Legacy line–was only at the chain. The Classic TMNT line was only at the chain. The best variety of other lines was at the chain. And plenty often, while a toy line was cheaper at Walmart or Target, it’d be the individual specific figures I most wanted that I’d locate at Toys R Us.

My very first TMNT figure–Rocksteady–was bought at Toys R Us. When the property returned in early 2003, it was Toys R Us where I snagged my figures. When the line returned a third time in 2012, my first figure from that line was from Toys R Us.


So, as stuff’s been discounted/clearanced, and I can’t buy the toy chain or single-handedly change the fact of it closing down, can’t employ anyone myself to save jobs, etc… to boil stuff down, "it is what it is."

A few weeks ago, I bought a huge Mega Construx set for the TMNT line–my single largest (most expensive) purchase from Toys R Us in my life. It was at a token discount, though already significantly clearanced from its MSRP. I bought it then because it was a Toys R Us exclusive as far as I know, and I didn’t want to "miss" it and wind up facing scalper pricing–double/triple MSRP–later–that would make it even more prohibitively expensive.

I thought that was it–my final purchase from the chain. With them going out of business–selling everything, even store fixtures–the shelves and such–surely they wouldn’t be getting anything new in. Surely, of whatever stuff was left, others who found the 10% off worthwhile would have cleared out anything/everything of interest to me.

And then, sure enough, I missed the closing. I saw some story online that they had closed, and I figured that was that.

Then a friend messaged me about something she’d seen at one. The chain itself had not yet closed! So I went back to the one location, figuring more consciously "one last time…" And ended up with some Power Rangers stuff. And then the local one to see what they had that might complement those.

mmpr_thunderzord_box

And I saw this. The Legacy Thunder Megazord. The box was a bit beat-up and less than pristine…but intact.

And 50% off.

Still very expensive for me, period, and especially at present. But it’s not likely I’d ever come across it again for this price. No, more than likely, it’d be 50% more than MSRP if not double or more. And I’ve had my eyes on this for a year and a half or so, having long since figured that at MSRP, it was too much…but for half that, it’d be more than worthwhile.

So, at 50% off…I bought it.

Expensive as a single unit, but it’s more like a "boxed set." With each of the Zords being the price of a Marvel Legends figure–to put it into a bit of perspective. And it was buying pieces piecemeal that I justified to myself the large Legendary Voltron set last year.


Anyway…a week later and I finally got this thing unpacked!

mmpr_thunderzord_assault_team

First, the individual Zords! Red Dragon in Warrior Mode; Pink Firebird; Blue Unicorn; Yellow Griffin; Black Lion (not THAT Black Lion…). The set came with a base, allowing the Zords to join together as the Thunderzord Assault Team.

As the Red Dragon in Warrior Mode stands in the middle, which basically looks like it’s rather uncomfortable (even as a giant robot, another giant robot’s beak-up-the-backdoor probably wouldn’t be pleasant), I don’t like that as a display mode. Of course, for the four smaller Zords, it’s great, and the Red Dragon can stand separate on its own…basically like in the show!

mmpr_thunderzord_assault_team_red_dragon

Of course, it also transforms on its own into "Dragon Mode," which is also pretty cool! He makes for a rather long piece that way, though, and sorta steals the scene!

thunder_megazord

I really like the look of the Thunder Megazord. However, it’s a bit loose, and wobbly and leans a bit…and I had to half-disassemble it when the Firebird decided to split into three pieces on me (note: it’s not really supposed to split into 3 pieces!). I don’t think this is "the lean" that early versions had, but more a side-to-side lean…which might be something with my assembly and not the figures, but whatever. I’d be really annoyed if I’d paid anything like full price…but at half off and just having the thing, I’m pretty much ok with it, overall!

thunderzords_voltron_lions

For the heckuvit…here’s the Thunderzord Assault Team with the five Legendary Voltron lions (well, the smaller die-cast ones, anyway!)

thunder_megazord_voltron

And here’s the Thunder Megazord with the larger version of the Legendary Voltron lions assembled into Voltron itself!

Though in retrospect I was technically exposed to Voltron–as these five lions that combined into a big one–first, having recalled sometime after I was introduced TO the Power Rangers that I’d seen a giant robot from five smaller ones before the show, it was truly MMPR that got to me first. But being a sucker for the combining robots and such, and nostalgic for Power Rangers in general, I guess they’re a lot like Star Trek for me.

I’m a fan of Star Trek, period. "The Original Series." "The Next Generation." To me, Star Trek has always been Star Trek, regardless of subtitle/flavor. And along with that, I’ve also been a fan of Star Wars, and though I’ve read a number of Star Trek novels to maybe 3 Star Wars books…on the whole, I don’t have any great one-or-the-other mentality to the properties.

And so it is here–Power Rangers. Voltron. I’m good with both, like ’em both.

legacy_thunder_megazord_power_up_blogtrailer

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Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers Tamashii Buddies

I can’t remember when I first saw the Tamashii Buddies figures for Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers–but it feels like it’s been at least a year.

I’ve only ever seen them at Toys R Us, but the price has often put me off on ’em, and I never got around to actually getting any of them.

Of course, over the past year and a half or so, my Power Rangers collection has expanded quite a bit.

tamashii_buddies_mmpr

With Toys R Us‘ "Store Closing" "liquidation sale," prices recently moved to 40-60% off. "Action figures" went from 10% off (not really "worthwhile" as that’s barely tax) to 50% off (quite worthwhile).

After checking prices on a number of things, I ultimately settled primarily on these Tamashii Buddies figures.

I’m not 100% on how I feel about them…but whatever the case, I really like the way they look! I just wish they had figures for the other original Rangers–Black, Blue, Yellow. Based on the box art and the "look what else you can buy!" stuff, these are it…at least for what had made its way into Toys R Us.

These are from two different TRU stores–the one did not have Lord Zedd while the other, as it turned out, had all 5. Of course, I only "needed" Zedd when I went into the second store.

I wound up walking out with my second-largest single TRU purchase (price-wise) of my life (which I’ll likely post about some other time, along with the first).

Anyway…these are the latest additions to my Power Rangers collection…I just need to figure out the shelf arrangement to include them!

tamashii_buddies_mmpr_blogtrailer

(Mighty Morphin’) Power Rangers on Home Media

The new Power Rangers movie hit home media this week, and as it stood, was one of the movies that I knew I definitely had an interest in purchasing, despite having seen it in the theater.

I opted to go with the Target steelbook edition…largely as it was supposed to come with a “graphic novel,” and I recall stuff like an X-Men one that came with a box set, or the Mask of the Phantasm one that came with a VHS back in the day, or even the full-sized Avengers Season One that came with the first MCU Avengers movie.

power_rangers_on_bluray

The case itself looks good, and I find that I much prefer these costumes’ appearance in stills like this or in action on the screen…but something about the toys just does not work for me–they look like dollar-store generics to me and don’t have the nostalgia that the classic costumes’ design would have.

As I’m not expecting much of a series here and don’t expect to have much to line this up with on a shelf, I was also more open to the steelbook as it won’t be a weird item amidst others for me. The title and such is still on the side, and I like this image, and even the lightning symbol on the back works well; though I may try to cut down the cardboard that came with it to have the “specs” of the release with the case, since that was not itself duplicated on the steelbook.

power_rangers_not_a_graphic_novel

Strictly on the surfacey, technical level, my only real disappointment here is that the so-called “graphic novel” is nothing more than a comic! It is just a differently-sized comic book, essentially a “single issue” (though it may have more pages). [Edit: Power Rangers: Aftershock apparently was a 96-page original graphic novel published in standard edition for $14.99.]

This booklet has 60 pages of story…so either the graphic novel has something else, or this is severely truncated!

I’m also–despite this being “free”–not happy with it as sold. “Sequel comic” or “free comic” or a number of other terms could be used. But to me, a “graphic novel” indicates squarebound and a sturdier cover and such–something “prestige format” perhaps. This most certainly is not that!

I guess this just strikes a chord with me, as it looks (to me) like blatant misuse of the term “graphic novel” to get around the term “comic” or “comic book”–as if either is a bad word.

Had this edition of the release been more expensive for including the comic, I’d be quite miffed. As the non-Target-exclusive version was the same price…this IS still “bonus” and 60 pages, so it’s not like it’s “nothing” was done.

I do look forward to re-watching this, as well as the “extras,” despite seeing too many online pieces already as folks scramble all over themselves to make “news stories” of stuff that’s revealed in comments in the extras and such.

power_rangers_on_bluray_blogtrailer

More Imaginext Power Rangers: Dragonzord!

There’s little quite like finding a far-too-expensive toy you’ve wanted (but been unwilling to pay that high of a price!) marked down nearly 50%, combined with unusual personal-life stressors to instigate an unplanned purchase.

In this case… the Imaginext Dragonzord!

imaginext_dragonzord01

Part of the expense on this one over the other various figures and Zords seems to be the “remote control” functions, and built-in sound effects/music.

When you turn the Zord on, it plays the traditional “dragon flute” tone; left sitting it’ll also roar.

imaginext_dragonzord03

With the dragon flute (remote), you can make the Dragonzord turn in circles, go forward, and fire the chest-missiles. Turning the platform the Green Ranger stands on will open the chest and activate the “arming missiles!” sound effect.

imaginext_dragonzord02

While this one is not nearly as detailed and awesome as (I imagine) the Legacy Dragonzord, this cost me less than 1/3 of what that one would…and this moves, has the sound effects, and is much bigger.

imaginext_dragonzord_and_megazord_and_white_tiger

While this Dragonzord dwarfs the White Tigerzord…it is itself dwarfed by the Megazord I got some time back. I won’t put it past myself to get on a kick and want to track down the other individual Zords (Pterodactyl, Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops, Sabretooth Tiger, Mastadon). But really, for now, I’m quite happy with the ones I’ve got!

mini_dragonzord

A few weeks back, I found this miniature Dragonzord…some sort of “Armor Series” of Imaginext figures…this slides (just barely) over a Green Ranger figure. (Somewhere along the way I’d also bought a pack of Mighty Meeples…which included a duplicate of the Superman that I bought for $1 weeks before that.)

mmpr_and_marvel_mighty_muggs

And to close out this post…above I have a shelf with my Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers Funko Pops figures and the Imaginext figures. They’re also sharing space with some of my much older Marvel and Star Wars Mighty Muggs.

The Imaginext Collection Begins…

Well, technically my Imaginext collection had already begun, but at this point, safe to say it’s begun in earnest now. At least compared to then.

imaginext_doomsday_superman

Here we have what REALLY had my eye: a Doomsday, with a battle-damaged Superman. Overall, I like this set…though Doomsday is significantly larger in scale than I’d prefer. Still…he should be a hulking behemoth that even Superman would have trouble with, so…it works. I definitely like how it has parts of the "classic" green suit as well as the bony protrusions and such…also lets ’em get away with not having a giant naked monster…

And though his suit is a bit messed up…there’s no "blood" on Superman. And there are no trunks, so it’s not quite "my" Superman, but I don’t miss the trunks all that much…especially with a solid red belt, the cape, and red boots!

imaginext_zedd_goldar

Then we have Goldar and Lord Zedd. These were a Power Rangers 2-pack.

imaginext_mmpr_tigerzord

And here we have the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers themselves. For the sake of completeness and my OCD, I tracked down the White Tigerzord set in order to get the White Ranger.

The rest of the Rangers were 2-packs, and surprisingly easy to find (and/or I got lucky!).


There are a few more Imaginext things I’m particularly interested in…chief among them, the Megazord that is somewhat in scale with these Rangers. There’s also a giant Goldar with its own version of Rita Repulsa that I’m waffling on seeking out.

On the DC side, there are a couple Robin/Red Robin figures…but unfortunately, none as parts of any of the cheaper 2-packs…they’re part of larger sets or vehicle/figure packs…which when I really just want the figure, make ’em more expensive than they’re worth. (At least with the White Ranger, I really dig the Tigerzord, too; and Doomsday was the primary draw for that pack!)

I guess time’ll tell…and I may have another post on these Imaginext toys soon…I really love the variety to the multiple licenses available! Much like Funko‘s Pop line, these allow multiple franchises to co-exist and seem to fit well together. And they’re much more "available" and reasonably-priced than the "adult collector" toys for either Marvel or DC!

MMPR and Why I’m Done With Boom! Studios’ Single Issues

I was excited last week for the debut of the new Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers series from Boom! Studios. I was annoyed at the SEVEN different covers for the #0 issue…but they’re all such great-looking pieces, and the property has just the right bit of nostalgia, that I was actually looking at bucking my usual hatred of variants.

I enjoyed the story of the issue, in part along with the notion of acquiring not one, but SIX to SEVEN copies of the issue, to frame and display the covers in my “comic cave.”

Unfortunately, I was only able to acquire one single cover (Black Ranger), and when I took to online retailers, no one had any of the issues in stock…and then I was BLOWN AWAY when I tried eBay…and learned that TWO of the covers were RATIOED VARIANTS.

1_50_green_ranger

The Green Ranger cover was 1:50, and the White Ranger was a whopping 1:100.

That is…for every FIFTY COPIES of the regular covers a retailer orders, they can order ONE single, solitary copy of the Green Ranger cover. A retailer would have to order ONE HUNDRED COPIES of the regular covers to be able to order ONE single, solitary copy of the White Ranger cover.

That is complete and utter BS, and I call shenanigans!

1_100_white_ranger

This is a “team book,” that is–the book stars the TEAM, a cast of more than one primary character–in this case, a team of SIX characters. ONE of those characters spent time with the powers of two different Rangers–Green and White. So while all SEVEN covers would be a great set, since the story FOCUSES on the early part of the Green Ranger even being part of the group, the White Ranger cover COULD be seen as a “bonus” cover, separate from the “set.” Bad enough each character has to have their own individual cover (rather than any sort of team cover)…but then Boom! goes and pulls this, taking arguably the most popular (Green and White) and making them not 1:7 (equal ratio), not 1:10 but 1:50 and 1:100 respectively.

Even if a retailer gets the issues at $1 each, that makes the Green cover a $50 book, and the White a $100 book. Move that price upward the more the retailer has to pay.

What would have otherwise been a fun little “exception” to my no-variants personal policy has turned into downright frustration, and frankly, at this point, I’m done with Boom!

I was “all-in” for three years with Valiant, and dropped the publisher as a whole last summer over their crap with the Legends of the Geomancer. It’s been awhile since Boom! has really had anything of any interest to me–Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers was gonna be my gateway back into their product, to having something of theirs on my pull list (and through whatever house ads/etc, I’d see as a result) probably get some of their other series back in my attention.

Instead, on principle, I’ll be voting with my wallet. Instead of my buying 6-7 copies of THE SAME ISSUE now, and continuing to purchase the ongoing monthly series’ issues each month, AND whatever else would grab my attention from there…I’ll likely part ways with the copy of the issue I did buy. And going forward, I will not only not be buying the series at all, I’ll not only passively not currently be buying anything from the publisher…I’ll be actively AVOIDING the publisher’s entire output…at least as single issues. Perhaps later in the year I’ll make an exception for a collected edition (provided the collected edition itself does not have variants), but as single issues go, as “supporting the series” goes…nope.

Thanks, Boom! for operating on the short-sightedness and money grab. You’ve earned ill-will on my end.

Recent Impulse-Buys: Power Rangers, Loki, and Thanos

I recently found myself out ‘n about with some extra time on my hands, so decided to stop in at a Marc’s* to see if they had any cool/cheap toy stuff, as I’ve found some amazing "closeout" deals there in the past. And given the nature of closeouts from what I’ve observed, I figured they MIGHT have some Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers figures.

(* Marc’s is a value grocery store in Ohio that has a lot of discount/closeout items as well as a meat and produce section, with a section specifically of closeouts stuff; they have an ATM and take cash-only, outside of Discover cards)

And sure enough, I found something VERY cool for a mere $2.99 (compared to $9.99ish+ in Target/Walmart for newer Power Rangers figures).

mmpr_20th_white_ranger

I was disappointed in there not being a White Ranger in the 2010 "basic figures" Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers line, and having recently acquired the Legacy White Tigerzord, getting this figure is all the cooler to go with it!

power_rangers_super_megaforce_mmpr_red_ranger

I went to a second Marc’s location to see what else I might find (the closeouts nature of the chain means variety store-to-store and maybe even day-to-day). I found this Red Ranger, and can’t remember if the 2010 one had the sword, but figured for the price I’d get it. Worst-case, this’ll be something I can give to someone else.

avengers_loki

Hasbro/Marvel seem to have realized that the $9.99+ price point is a bit MUCH for figures (and I’m constantly amazed at Target ratcheting the price up to $12.99 and now $13.59 or something like that definitely more atrocious than $12.99/$13 on the dot). Having a line of lower-priced figures (in the $5.99 range) is something I want to support, and Cinematic Loki is cool, so, I picked this up for the character and to "support" the line.

infinity_minimates

Recently at Toys R Us, I came across this, and for the price and my being all about anything Thanos-related, I declined to talk myself out of buying this 4-pack. Slightly cheaper than two 2-packs, and $5 cheaper than a Deadpool 4-pack, so I figured this was likely to go up in price later, so get it now while it’s more reasonably-priced.

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