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The Weekly Haul Catch-Up: Weeks of May 2, 9, & 16, 2019

Well, it’s been a few weeks since a Weekly Haul post. I’ve taken photos to do the posts, but real life got in the way of doing these posts themselves.

So, here are 3 weeks’ worth crammed into one!


Week of May 02, 2019

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A very DC week!

Batman and Batman/TMNT III were out May 2nd…as well as the 25-cent Year of the Villain issue. Like its predecessor last year or the year before–the issue is not all that interesting to me, and turns me off more than on to upcoming stuff; especially as I really have zero interest in "The Batman Who Laughs" OR Snyder‘s Justice League stuff.

We’re nearing the end of Adventures of the Super Sons, and who knows what the future holds for these characters. I’ve also gotten behind in reading the various Wonder Comics titles. Even though I recently decided to go "all-in" on them, if I’m already behind and not overly concerned about it…do I really need/want to be buying these titles?weeklyhaul_20190502b

At a visit to a Five Below store, I snagged a copy of the classic How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way. I remember getting this from the library several times as a kid–though it’d been defaced by other borrowers in a rather inappropriate way. Having my own (clean) copy is cool…though after I bought it, it occurred to me that I may have snagged a copy from Half-Price Books previously…though where that particular copy got to, I’m not sure at the moment.

They also had this Hot Wheels Batman classic ’66 Batmobile. It’s basically the only car I really "care" about, NOT being a "cars guy." So, it’s another little trinket to add to the ever-expanding collection.

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Then a couple days after New Comic Day, went with friends to an evening pre-Free Comic Book Day event where they’d brewed some custom beer. I tried the Wolverine’s Canadian Ale, and a friend gave me his empty Cyclops Weak Summer Pilsner bottle so I’d have both!


Week of May 09, 2019

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May 9th was a small-ish week comics-wise. I’m once more falling behind on reading for Detective Comics, which even though I tend to like the writer’s work, leads me to wonder if I care enough to "keep up with" the title, now that we’re past #1000 and it lacks the "excitement" of the "build-up to" that 1000th issue.

I’ve kept up with Supergirl primarily on principle–I think I had all of the Rebirth run, and definitely wanted to support the notion of a series ACTUALLY CONTINUING THE NUMBERING. I’ve yet to read any of the current run, unfortunately, so it seems another one ripe for dropping. And as said above on other Wonder Comics…I begin to wonder if I was a bit premature going "all-in" on the imprint if I’m not gonna get around to reading the things!

It continues to be rather "telling" to me that I’m happy to re-buy (at a premium price) stuff like Annotated Marvels for $8 as that’s "only" double the price of a standard new Marvel issue but it’s an extra-sized thing with even more added content in the annotations..and it’s a known quantity to me, having gotten the original Marvels issues new as they came out back in 1994!

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While at a Gamestop looking for the TMNT: Mutants in Manhattan game for X-Box, I spotted this Batman Funko Pop figure and knowing I’d "eventually" want it, went ahead and bought it so I don’t have to "hunt" it later.

Which is, in itself, another thing I’m noticing a lot more lately–I’m buying way more than I’d typically do, because it seems "everything" so QUICKLY goes "out of print" and "unavailable" that if I don’t buy it on the spot, I won’t be able to (reasonably) do so later.

And that takes a lotta "fun" outta stuff.


Week of May 16, 2019

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…And now we’re to the current/most recent week!

New Superman issue, new Batman issue, and the new Naomi. I’m not into "speculating" on books, and this title is maybe more a driving factor in my reconsidering the Wonder Comics line if I’m not getting around to the reading.

Then there’s the new Immortal Hulk issue. This makes the 3rd issue in a row for the latter for me…though I don’t know that I’ll want to keep going with the series. It’s not really coming off the way I expected, and I’d probably get more from it if I’d read the earlier issues–but if I do those by Marvel Unlimited I might as well do the series that way.

I’ve been digging the Spider-Man: Life Story series, so that’s a "given" for me; and while I was really looking forward to the first issue of Shredder in Hell, I was NOT counting on it being BI-MONTHLY as it’s been so far. At this writing the series should’ve been finished already (or the final issue coming out in a couple days)…not having 2 more issues yet to come sometime later this year!

Despite the being-behind-on-reading, I’m a bit more willing to suppor IDW‘s Marvel stuff. Though even these may be short on my list as the newness/novelty wears off and collected volumes start coming out that put the single issues’ cover prices to shame.


I’m feeling fairly grouchy toward a lotta comics lately…and while much of my frustration is with Marvel, DC is stacking up quite a bit. I’m none too keen on the upcoming Lois Lane or Jimmy Olsen 12-issue series. I’m behind on reading the main Superman and Action Comics titles as-is. And I’m NOT looking forward to the Leviathan "event" about to start. Also put-off by the Year of the Villain build-up (some of that from the 25-cent special having an opposite-from-intended effect on me, turning me off to stuff rather than building my excitement). As of this writing, I just saw some articles on Bleeding Cool with the August 2019 solicitations (and stuff from the Diamond Retailers’ Summit or such) with the upcoming cardstock cover variants (adding $1 to cover price for affected issues!) and that puts me yet further off from stuff.

EVERY SINGLE ISSUE having AT LEAST 2 covers continues to be a turn-off on principle.

Then the way stuff goes out of print and out of stock on collected volumes leaves me cold–recently, I’d thought I could "catch up" on the GI Joe Classic line; but maybe 2-3 weeks after I ordered vols. 7-8 (I had 1-6 from a few years ago) suddenly most of 9-16 is unavailable except from 3rd-party sellers jacking the prices way up for being "out of print."

I had had Game of Thrones spoiled for me from casual posts thrown out on Facebook that went significantly well beyond what I’d experienced so far, so I grudgingly gave up and gave in and though I’m only sequentially to season 5: episode 2, I watched season 8: episode 5, and will probably suck it up and watch the finale. If it’s gonna be totally spoiled for me anyway I might as well AT LEAST get the spoilers FIRST HAND from watching MYSELF!

So there’s that ending–and we’re a few weeks past Avengers Endgame and essentially the ending to 11 years’ worth of Marvel Cinematic Universe films–and The Big Bang Theory just ended–so it feels like a lot of endings lately.

And I begin to consider: maybe it’s time for me to take more of a "break" from comics?

Though I’ll "eventually" have to "play catch-up" anyway for the likes of Superman and Action Comics as I always do; perhaps I need to cut back to just a few things.

Spawn to #300. TMNT stuff. And Tom King‘s Batman, since it seems like NO ONE ELSE even actually does more than 10-20 issues anymore.

It’s not like I wouldn’t have other stuff to read–to catch up on reading–even if I never bought any more comics ever!

So who knows…

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The Weekly Haul: Week of April 24, 2019

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Last week was a monumental week on a couple of fronts. Comic-wise, not so much. But I’ll get to those momentarily.

Avengers: Endgame premiered, and thanks to a friend scoring early tickets, I got to see a 6pm show of the film Thursday, April 22nd! I haven’t settled on quite the adjectives to use for it, and I really presently have no intention of attempting any formal review of the film.

I found the film to be "fitting," satisfying, well worth seeing, and I definitely enjoyed it. I loved catching various references and callbacks to other/earlier Marvel films, and one particularly key moment of self-identification that flashed back to the first of the Marvel Studios films.

While I lack the words, given the foundation of 21 earlier films, within the context of all those films and having seen them and all that…I’d be hard-pressed NOT to rank it up there with the original Iron Man and Captain America: Civil War. Though just as Infinity War brought back an awe originally found in the first 2012 Avengers, this one definitely surpassed that by far, for me.

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Eventually, I’m going to get caught up on Action Comics again. I’m almost going to have to, if I’m gonna follow the other Leviathan stuff coming in May. That said, there was definitely something to seeing the #1010 next to #1002–two four-digit numbers–with Detective Comics. I’ve yet to play any of the Arkham games…so this Arkham Knight stuff doesn’t hit the high notes for me that it probably does for others. I’m also still not overly keen on this new logo for the title…less so when seen next to the classic, nearly-original 80+ years old Action logo.

Heroes in Crisis #8 reveals stuff…and I was rather "shocked" when I realized that against initial intentions, I’ve kept on with each issue, after thinking I’d leave it for a collected edition if at all. I strongly feel like the title’s event(s) could EASILY have been condensed to 3-4 issues with the "interviews" done as bonus text pieces as backmatter and achieved the same effect in less than half the time/expense of the series as a whole. I’m digging King‘s Batman run…but HiC is far, far more a "miss" for me.

I also need to catch up on my reading for Mr. & Mrs. X…but keep up with the series because it’s Rogue and Gambit, and I’ve quite a bit of relative "history" with the characters going back 26-some years now.

I clearly, consciously remember getting Avengers Forever #1 "off the shelf" back in 1998–nearly 21 years ago. So it was fitting to get it again in this format–for only $1–and the realization that there are several years of high school graduates who were born AFTER the issue originally came out! In 1992/1993 as I was fully getting into comics, 21 years back was 1971/1972…I was closer to to Claremont‘s revamp of the X-Men then, than I am now to getting in post-1991!

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TMNT #93 kicks off City at War and begins the final run-up to #100. Criminal–basically, anything from Brubaker and Phillips–is always a treat. And for the heckuvit, I decided to "try" Ascender #1…though who knows when/if I’ll get to reading the darned thing.

Comic Shop News gives House of X the spotlight…and I’ve got mixed feelings on the thing. I’m curious and interested in something big and "key" with the X-Men…but I am NOT keen on the high-priced single-issues, nor the inevitable waste of space of entire pages with just a couple words on them that are typical to everything from Hickman…to say nothing of generally having a sense of pretentiousness from what I’ve read by the writer. Not so much that the writer is pretentious, but the air of the comics seem that way, as well as what I get from having to "do homework" to "appreciate" the stories. With two concurrent (and I believe, biweekly?) 6 issue-series across 12ish weeks…I’ll possibly check out first issues, but more than likely leave stuff for collected edition(s) if reviews warrant.

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I hit a significant quarter-bin jackpot on Good Friday (likely detailing that in an upcoming post). This past weekend, I found less of particular interest, despite snagging a "grail" (also in the likely-upcoming post). But for $1.75…two Wizard specials ($4.95 apiece cover price, I believe), the "chromium"/fancy covers for Bloodshot #0 and Turok #1 (another $8ish between the two), a Machine Man issue (that I mistook as some sort of 2099 special I’d missed all these years), and oversized Captain America (with stuff about Galactic Storm) and one of the number of variants from 2000’s X-Men #100. Easily $30ish in "value" for $1.75. Far superior value over even one $5 contemporary Marvel issue.


Hard to believe that the next New Comic Book Day will be MAY 2019 already. And it’ll be the first  NCBD post-Avengers Endgame. I wonder how different that may feel.

Or not.

Time’ll tell!

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NECA TMNT Quarter Scale: Donatello

It’s been a few weeks–maybe a month or so, now–since I got the last of the NECA TMNT quarter-scale figures I’ve been after.

I believe there’s also a Foot ninja and a Raphael-in-trenchcoat…but I’m really not interested in either of those. I prefer Raph as-is without the trenchcoat…and a lone Foot ninja makes little sense to me, and at this scale and price I’m NOT investing in 3-5+ of the things to justify the "generic minion/bad-guy" thing.

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I didn’t have the patience at the time to get a better shot of the front of the box…a bit of glare, as such.

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The sides of the box…

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The back of the box.

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I’d neglected at the time–due to other things going on in my private life–to get a solo shot of Donnie. Right now I don’t really have open space to properly get a good shot, so here he is towering over the Gamestop 1990 Movie Mikey and a Target 2-pack Foot ninja.

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And here’s the current (at least as of this posting in early April 2019) shelf of my NECA TMNT stuff with Raph, Leo & Mikey, and of course, Donnie…as well as the Baby Turtles that I started this crazy-expensive collecting ride with.

I may still try to get the ooze cannister prop and Casey Jones mask prop…but after a number of extremely-expensive (for me) purchases across a number of paychecks, and other stuff I’m trying to get…expensive NECA stuff is on hiatus for me at the moment.

(One more expensive NECA purchase from several weeks ago yet to share, though!)

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The Weekly Haul: Week of March 27, 2019

Last week was both a small week and a HUUUUGE week!

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On the "HUUUUUGE" part, we have the 1000th issue of Detective Comics! My very first issue of the series was #604…which to some reckoning makes this the 396th issue I myself have been around for. (398 if you count the two #0 issues, over 400 if you count whatever other titled out of sequence issues).

Then there’s the latest issue of TMNT: Urban Legends, guest starring some of the Savage Dragon characters. After all, this is the series that was originally published by Image, and I believe instigated at the time by Erik Larsen, creator of the Savage Dragon and associated characters.

And there’s the second issue of the latest iteration of IDW‘s Transformers. Can’t say I’m all that impressed after reading the first two issues. Maybe it’s not bogged down with intricate continuity, but it’s not engaging me all that much.

Next is the latest Action Comics, which I’m sadly a few issues behind on reading. I’m not terribly keen on stuff with this "Leviathan" branching out to a bigger event…overall, I’m just sick and tired OF events!

Which brings us to Heroes in Crisis #7. I’m pretty sure this was supposed to originally BE a 7-issue series. While it obviously, literally has PAGES that prove its length, I feel like there still hasn’t been any significant STORY developments or forward movement. It’s like something that might be better suited for–I don’t know–a "web comic" series or something, with each of these one-page "interview sequences" serving as a "strip," and EVENTUALLY they all get collected into some print edition.

I’ve thrown in with the Wonder Comics line…the latest premiere of which is Dial H For Hero. I’ve never particularly read any iteration of this title before, but do recall having an old ’80s issue, back in the early ’90s in my earliest days being "into" comics significantly.

Where I’d figued the William Gibson Alien3 thing to be four issues, apparently it was 5 issues. Longer story is good…now to find 1-4 and read the whole thing in one sitting! Fitting in a way as the latest Alien thing for me to read. In 1992 or so, it was the novelization of the film that "hooked" me on the franchise, and that’s lasted 27-some years now!

Finally, Mr. & Mrs. X #9…reminding me yet also once more again that I’m far too "behind" on reading, but quite enjoy Rogue & Gambit and so wanted the title. At this point I believe I can catch up on some reading even without locating all my single issues, thanks to Marvel Unlimited.

I have some small hopes of getting a review of Detective 1000 up in the next week or two. In short, it was a nice, thick issue with lots to read, and took me several sittings to get through. I passed on all of the "decades variants," due to the price, primarily. The ’80s and ’90s covers would’ve had me just for nostalgia of the classic "DC bullet" as well as the title logos themselves. But the image on the ’90s cover just wasn’t distinct enough or interesting enough to me. And the Frank Miller image has got to be one of the single UGLIEST cover images of a Batman I have EVER seen!

I’m still trying to locate the Walmart Detective Comics 100-Page Giant issue…and it might be my "breaking point" on those, as I enjoy having EVERY issue. Miss one, break "the streak," and why bother with the others? But I also refuse to pay $15-20+ for a $5 comic…especially with the many Walmarts around here and the frequency at which I’m able to visit said stores.

Though this post is for the March 27, 2019 books…here’s to the first week of April 2019–April 3rd–being a good week of new comics!

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NECA TMNT ’80s Cartoon Two-Packs

Life’s been its own brand of crazy the last couple months. So I’m only now–a MONTH after the fact–getting around to sharing these cool purchases!

I’ve been AWARE OF the NECA brand since 2010 or 2011…whenever they did the Mirage Comics-style turtles, before the 2012 line for the Nickelodeon 2012 show was out from Playmates.

Having recently (finally) bought the Raphael and then Leo & Mikey 1/4-scale figures, these 2-packs from Target were not a terrible stretch…though it was a LOT to spend in such a short time-frame. But they served as a sort of "retail therapy" or such.

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I’m not the greatest fan of the 1980s cartoon. For a time, I actually held a fair bit "against" it, though as the IDW comics have continued and have incorporated elements, stuff has been somewhat "redeemed" and I’ve come to appreciate its place in history–in general and of the TMNT property in general. And these 2-packs made for a decent "set" of figures…that’s certainly one thing about the TMNT stuff–it’s totally geared for sets of 4 with the main characters!

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Leonardo and Shredder make for a good pairing here. All the 2-packs are one turtle and one villain. So of course, matching the "leaders" up works quite well on a number of levels! 

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While the front of the boxes are showing off the figures themselves, the backs show a staged photo, a short description, as well as the other 3 boxes available for this "wave" of figures! 

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Donatello and Krang are the "brains" of their respective groups…Krang pretty literally so. That makes these a good matchup as well. The walker contraption Krang rides in–from the earliest episodes of the ’80s cartoon–is roughly the same height as the classic Playmates figure…though Krang himself is a lot smaller here and more proportionate. 

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Back of the box showing Donnie poised to tip Krang right on over… 

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Though Raphael has come to be my favorite turtle as an adult, his 2-pack has him and "just" a Foot ninja. I’ve never been overly keen on this version of the Foot–mindless robots just seem like they shouldn’t be a threat whatsoever. And generally they were not MUCH of one, just a delaying tactic. Still, the poseability on the NECA figure(s) makes this far, FAR superior to the classic Playmates iteration! 

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Cliché as it is, there IS the classic line from Raph’s first encounter with the Foot bots. "Klang?!? Did you say–‘Klang’?"

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Michelangelo also comes with a Foot bot, that seems basically the same as the one with Raph. Though it would seem a someone generic thing to have half the packs come with these…it also actually, truly makes sense as the Foot bots ARE generic and to just have one is to defeat the point of having generic minions. And as these are a much better quality, I’m glad TO have two, although I’d have also been rather happy if these came in their own 2-pack, so that their slots could be filled with other characters!

Of course, I believe I saw stuff coming out of the one toy convention that NECA has upcoming plans for Bebop and Rocksteady. And if they come in 2-packs like these…I’d be grateful to get the pair as their own pack. But if there’s to be more hero vs villain foolery to further induce buying of multiple packs…I’d take April and Splinter with them, and/or Casey Jones! 

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Here we have the back of the pack with Mikey gut-kicking his Foot bot.

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I like the sides of the packages. One side shows each of the turtles…

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…while the other side shows the villain that turtle’s paired with!

The packs are definitely quite attractive as-is. But these being TMNT, I "couldn’t" just leave them in their boxes. So I did get them out. However, the photos of the unboxed figures will have to wait for another post!

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NECA TMNT Quarter Scale: Leo & Mikey

I’m not a toy speculator. I’ve never sold toys–not for any profit, anyway–and I can only vaguely remember ebaying some Heroclix minis 15+ years ago.

But I do like collecting toys in the sense of following certain lines or getting certain sets/subsets of toys…and it REALLY bugs me when there are convention-only exclusives of figures, PERIOD–I’m more ok with certain slight variants that I don’t tend to care for, but if it’s the existence of the figure/character AT ALL, I have a problem with the exclusivity. But that gets into another topic/post entirely.

While keeping an eye on the NECA quarter-scale TMNT 1990 figures and checking options…I noticed that the cheapest price for the Michelangelo figure was some $40 more than the others, on Amazon. Since Big Bad Toy Store did me right with the Raphael figure a couple weeks earlier, I both went with them again…and went with TWO turtles this time!

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As I’d said before, Leonardo was always my favorite turtle of the four as a kid…but as an adult, I’ve found that Raphael’s tended to be my favorite moreso, including being the first turtle I went with for this line.

But Leo was not far behind, as here he is!

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The sides of the package give some images of the figure.

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…and the back shows even more, as well as having a brief text blurb about the character/figure.

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Then there’s Michelangelo. As mentioned above, I saw this one listed on AMAZON for around $40 more than the others, but since he was the same price as the others at Big Bad Toy Store, I opted to double-up for this order and include him, to hopefully avoid overpaying for any of the four turtles!

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Here are the box sides for him…

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…and the back of the box.

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Finally, here’s the NECA shelf at present. Three quarter-scale turtles, all four 7"-scale turtles, the quarter-scale Baby Turtles, and standard-TMNT-figure size "movie star" turtles (my vintage Donatello, and 3 unofficial replicas for the other turtles).

The NECA figures are by far the superior figures, nostalgia or otherwise.

And for the sake of checking it out, I immediately swapped hands so Michelangelo has the spinning weapon variant hand/weapon that came with the Baby Turtles!

I’m leaning toward ordering Donatello on my next paycheck, though also half wondering about seeing if I can find him at a convention I’ll be going to.

Time will definitely tell!

That said…I’m missing Donatello, the Ooze Cannister replica, and the Casey Jones facemask. I’m MOST interested in these turtles themselves…and THEN there’s several two-packs apparently due to be showing up in Target any time now, that I’m very interested in.

As I said regarding these on Twitter the other day: definitely "midlife-crisis" purchasing!

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NECA TMNT 1990 Movie Turtles (Gamestop Exclusives)

Last week I posted about finally getting the NECA quarter-scale Raphael figure I’d wanted for over a year.

The day after I ordered that, I had communication from Gamestop regarding a pre-order I’d placed way back in August 2018…for 7"-scale versions of the movie turtles. I’d completely forgotten about the pre-order, that the figures were even going to exist.

And–long story short–an ordering snafu and a 70+ minute phone call to customer service and several days, and my order arrived.

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The TMNT seem to be an excellent property to me for stuff like this–one rarely would want just one turtle, as there are four primary characters…but there aren’t necessarily SO many characters that it becomes a hopeless thing. And of course, I went with all four here!

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As a kid, Leonardo was always my "favorite turtle," for his color–blue–and being the leader (which seems odd to me as an adult with little interest in leadership). In more recent years I’ve found Raphael to be a "new favorite," as also demonstrated with opting for Raph as my first of the quarter-scale turtles. 

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The back of the package has the turtle’s name and several images of the turtle, as well as a brief paragraph describing stuff, and a static image common across all four packages.

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As said, Leo was my favorite; though Raph has overtaken him, he’s my "second favorite," and it’s interesting to me to see the two characters’ interactions; especially in the 1990 film where they butt heads and Leo is so relieved to be able to apologize to Raph for saying they didn’t need him. 

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It’s interesting to me to compare the 1990 film to the comics as it drew so heavily…though as a kid, I remember being a bit surprised when I discovered that in the comics it was Leonardo who was badly beaten by the Foot, and not Raphael…though the beaten turtle being tossed through the window to April’s apartment was consistent between the iterations.

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In some ways, Mikey’s my least favorite of the turtles…as a kid, I never cared for that notion of the "party dude"–though moreso with the ’80s cartoon, it was the surfer dude aspect I never cared much for. The film version was more to my liking, and some "iconic" lines that stand out for me to this day…"Pizza Dude’s got thirty seconds!" And of course, the infamous "God, I love being a TURTLE!" 

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I also recall even as a kid noticing that in the movie, it was Splinter who had the phrase "Cowabunga!" at first, though obviously the turtles adopted it quickly as the film closed. 

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While Raph and Leo are my favorites, Donatello is one I can identify with in other ways–especially his trying to join his brothers in exclamations while not quite fitting. Bossa Nova? Chevy Nova? And of course his friendship with Casey Jones and repairing the vehicle at April’s farmhouse. 

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In retrospect I also quite appreciate this 1990 take on the character…though Donnie may be the "geek" of the bunch, I don’t care for the "stereotype" of the heavy/thick glasses that they saddled the character with for the 2014 & 2016 films. And of course, it’s those films that by comparison make these look all the better in my mind, though the nostalgia does plenty of good in that regard on its own. 

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Here’s the Raphael figure on a (sold separately) NECA action figure base. 

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Above is a look at the shell of the 7" Raphael figure. I’ve long REALLY liked the shell pattern of these movie turtles over pretty much any other iteration. And as these figures do such an excellent job of looking exactly like the film costumes, I’m quite enamored with having figures with the shell pattern duplicated, and that I can see it so clearly myself "live" and "in person" without just pausing a film on a screen or such.

I’d wondered about how similar this scale would be to the quarter-scale, and based on the "battle damage" on Raph’s shell, it seems–if not a shrunken mold, certainly an extremely detailed match, if one looks closely at the various slashes! 

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Here’s a photo of the shell from the quarter-scale figure, and to my eye, I’d say they’re identical in detail, just different in size

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Here are all four turtles out of the packaging and on NECA-brand bases. 

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And here’s a look at the quarter-scale Raph, 7" scale Raph, and a "regular size" TMNT figure for scale (a reproduction of the "Movie Star Raphael" figure). The angle partially distorts the exact scale of the figures, but I still like seeing just how massive the quarter scale figure is, and these 7" figures are also significantly taller than the old standard figures! 

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The NECA turtles get their own shelf for display for present–quarter scale Raph, 7", and "baby turtles" that I posted about a few weeks ago.  The miniature figures on a wall rack behind are Mini-Mates if I recall correctly, as well as Mega Bloks (now Mega Construx) minis.

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Finally, since I have them, I’d added the Movie Star Turtles reproductions to the shelf because why not? I don’t even need risers or such for everything to be easily seen on the shelf!


I’m NOT keen on chain-exclusive toys, and count myself extremely lucky that I happened across some announcement SOMEWHERE of these GameStop figures. The TMNT have long been–and continue to be–an exception to most of my personal "rules" and "principles" with stuff. I wasn’t about to boycott these or ignore them once I knew of them…even though I did then–with having pre-ordered–forget about them. (I was confident in the preorder and thus no reason to worry about missing them, so it was out of sight/out of mind).

At the same time, I figure at least there are a lot of GameStop locations around. I have four within a 20 minute driving radius, with two more extending to the half hour, and several more within an hour and near places I get to fairly frequently. So at least for me, the chain is actually more common and accessible to me than Walmart!

And though these are GameStop exclusive…that sure as heck beats San Diego Comic Con exclusive, or ANY convention-exclusive! I did see a YouTube video where someone compared the two versions–the SDCC from a couple years ago and these GS and there was no appreciable difference.

I’m sure QUITE happy with what I’ve got out of it, and since I want them out in the open on display and not just as toys in a package anyway, I’m actually probably "happier" with these than much rarer, MORE-exclusive, MORE EXPENSIVE versions!

Of course, issues with GameStop itself–the preorder snafu, waiting on hold from an automated system for 70 minutes to talk to my first human, the "handling" AND shipping-cost-per-item-but-all-four-came-in-a-single-box–were less than ideal. But I got these within a couple days of their official release, I didn’t have to deal with calling around or driving around to various GameStops looking for these or stewing over whether or not to trust their website’s accuracy of something being in-stock or not, etc.

And having them…it certainly desensitizes me to anyone ELSE’s plight. I have these, I’m happy with them, I’m glad I got them…and within individual reason, I definitely would recommend them as themselves (can’t blame NECA for issues with GameStop, short of the exclusivity and such to begin with).

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