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TMNT Toys in the Wild: Rise of the TMNT 1st Wave

I already posted about the Raphael figure I bought over the weekend, with the new Rise of the TMNT toy line starting to make its appearance.

I came across a display of the entire first wave of basic figures, and got photos of them "in the wild" (actually at a Walmart). Including the not-in-the-wild Raphael, here are my photos of the figures "on the card" as well as their "profile" from the back of the card, a la the old "clip-and-collect" profiles from the ’80s line.


Raphael:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_raph_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_raph_profile


Leonardo:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_leo_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_leo_profile


Donatello:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_don_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_don_profile


Michelangelo:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_mike_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_mike_profile


Splinter:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_splinter_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_splinter_profile


April:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_april_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_april_profile


Meat Sweats:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_meatsweats_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_meatsweats_profile


Baron Draxum:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_barondraxum_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_barondraxum_profile


Origami Ninja:

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_origamininja_front

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_origamininja_profile


Until seeing the figures for myself, I hadn’t realized the Origami Ninja had a foot slapped on its face…which does somewhat "qualify" it as a Foot Ninja…so against prior expectations, I may (eventually, perhaps) try to get several.

And Baron Draxum seems rather obviously a stand-in for Shredder, so there’s a good chance I may (again, eventually, perhaps) try to get one.

I’d figured Meat Sweats would be "worth it" for bulk alone…but I think I’ve pretty much decided that if I want a large pig muant…I’d rather go with a 30+ year old classic in Bebop.

Time will definitely tell. And I suppose I’ll be curious as to what other figures will make their ways out for this line.

I remember the 2012 line rolling out by early August 2012, and 3-4 more figures by Christmas. Given we’re at early October for these, I think I’d be sorta surprised to see a second wave in 2018, though not too surprised if another makes it out in early 2019.

I have issues with the extremely-limited nature and high prices on the Neca figures…and I think it would be absolutely fantastic if Playmates were to produce a line of figures based on the IDW comics…ideally in the style of Mateus Santolouco. The four turtles, Splinter, April, Casey, Shredder, Krang, (human) Baxter Stockman (with mousers), maybe a multipack of named Utrom characters; the Neutrinos, the Mutanimals…Bludgeon, Koya, Bebop, Rocksteady…Alopex, Agent Bishop, The Pantheon…

To borrow a phrasing style…I’d buy the heck outta those, at under-$10/figure!

But that wishlist and topic is surely a topic for some other post.

tmnt_toys_in_the_wild_rise_of_the_tmnt_wave_1_blogtrailer

New Rise of the TMNT Figures are Out

For the first time in over six years…there’s a new "main" line of TMNT toys out.

BEING that it is the Ninja Turtles–my core "exception" on stuff in comics–that bleeds a bit into the toys.

I’m not a fan of Rise of the TMNT. I was NEVER the best at "keeping up" with the 2012 animated series–nor ANY animated series, PERIOD, in the last 15 years or so, no matter how much I love the series itself. But I’ve always HATED the "optics" of Rise–namely, that the 2012 series was flat-out cancelled TO MAKE WAY FOR this new series. Whether that was actually the case or not, I don’t know–but it’s certainly how I FEEL on the thing.

I watched the first episode some time back now, it was "free"–and while it wasn’t as "bad" as I’d expected (perhaps my view has softened since I watched it), I did not like it, and I really do not like a number of elements from it, particularly the character designs.

But somewhere along the way, I got it into my head that when the new toys came out, I’d probably "at least" try getting Raphael. "Traditionally" Leonardo was always my favorite of the turtles, and the one I’d claim as a kid and growing up. But over the last 10-15 years, I’ve found a newer preference for Raphael.

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_raph_front

So I did indeed go ahead and get Raphael, finding the figure available this weekend at a local-ish Walmart.

And on the surface, the figure itself doesn’t look totally horrid or such…this one, at least, actually more or less looks like a decent TMNT figure, albeit the character does not come with the sais that have been associated with this character for 34 years. But the "new/different weapons" thing is a whole other matter I’m not getting much into right now.

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_raph_back

The back of the figure is more or less what I would expect, if slightly more basic-looking. The bulk of the back is the "profile" of the character. It makes sense of course, for that to dominate…it just seems almost "too" dominant to me. With a new series, new toy line, I’d somewhat expect the part showing the figures available in this first wave to be a bit bigger, to better emphasize and show off THAT there are other figures!

Even so, I’m not enamored with most of these other figures as shown. Leonardo is dominated by the giant sword and seems scrawny; as does Donatello with a more proportionate staff weapon; and Michelangelo also seems rather scrawny for a Ninja Turtle.

I’ll be curious about Splinter as he looks rather small, but could be interesting.

This is the first "main" TMNT toy line that I’m aware of that has NOT included a Shredder in its premiere wave. On one hand, that’s a bit refreshing; on the other–and in context of these toys–I find it rather lame.

The butcher character might be interesting for size…it looks like a nice, bulky character that’ll at least be worth its price for that bulk; where the ninja doesn’t look like it’ll even stand on its own.

rise_of_the_tmnt_toys_raph_profile

As a TMNT guy, as a collector…not having a Shredder and not having any Foot ninjas does this line a real disservice. I’m not invested in any of the villains…and with neither Shredder nor Foot, there’s not even the notion of having a new version to "match up with" the previous versions.

I’m reluctant on the other turtles, but have NOT ruled out the idea with myself that I’ll get the other turtles and Splinter to at least have the "set."

I appreciate the idea of having new characters and NOT merely regurgitating the past. That said…I’m NOT invested in the new show. I’m not invested in the particular new characters. I may get the other three turtles and Splinter–at least eventually–but I don’t really see getting much into this iteration of the toy line.

I could wind up eating those words, though.

Time will tell.

new_rise_of_the_tmnt_figures_are_out_blogtrailer

Recently Redone Action Figure Shelves (Early April 2018)

Along with recently redoing the setup of my comic space with new bookcases and such (which I will "eventually" be showing off here), I’ve been working on redoing some action figure shelves.

tmnt_shelves_april05

I now have a shelf set up with the various TMNT villains, and another for variants of the Turtles themselves as well as allies. (Some folks might notice a potential villain in with the allies, but to me he is one of the Mighty Mutanimals and thus an ally!)

tmnt_display_april05

I also have this old wall-display shelf I "rescued" from the attic of my parents’ old house. It’s perfectly-slotted to display the three "generations" of TMNT so far, along with Splinter and April. Whether this display remains somewhat permanently or not remains to be seen…especially with a new "4th generation" line due out soon (for better or worse).

superman_shelf_april05

Then there’s my Superman shelf. Previously, I’d had most of these crammed onto one shelf on the same level and couldn’t even see many of them. Redoing the display, I’ve been able to incorporate a tiered system that allows for better overall display and visibility of the various figures and such–from the 12" figures to DC Direct to Multiverse to regular size to the various miniatures and such…as well as a statue and even a Heroclix figure.

…And these are not even all of my Supermen! But I barely got these to all fit into one shelving slot, and with other figures that I will eventually have displayed and such, it won’t hurt to still have Superman mixed in with those as well!


I have several other "shelving slots" to fill, but have to get more supplies yet for my "tiered system" so my efforts were put on hold for a bit. Given events going on in my personal life, that’s not a bad thing, and it’s certainly not a rush to get done!

I’m sure I’ll show off other shelves in the near future. (And those of you who follow me on Twitter, you probably recognize the above photos from me sharing "in the moment" as I finished up the displays!)

recently_redone_action_figure_shelves_april_2018_blogtrailer

The Legendary Voltron…Toys

I’ve long been a sucker for build-a-figure toys. Collect multiple figures, get pieces for a big/other figure, voila! Bonus figure in addition to the individual figures.

Even longer than that, though, I’ve been a sucker for the likes of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers and their Megazord…the combining of the Pterodactyl, Triceratops, Mastadon, Saber-Toothed Tiger, and Tyrannosaurus into the larger humanoid robotic machine (with a power sword!).

Alas, the Power Rangers license is screwy (to me) and their Legacy line is ridiculously expensive, especially for buying all in one go, and for the actual size…to say nothing of my ever-so-favorite subject in comics, movies, and toys…VARIANTS. (I am NOT interested in Black-and-White variants of the zords…I want the fully-colorized ones that look like the show.

So when I started noticing Voltron toys popping up, they caught my attention. I knew enough to know that they’ve got five lions and Voltron. The combining of the Green Lion, Yellow Lion, Red Lion, Blue Lion, and Black Lion into the…larger…humanoid..robotic machine (with a power sword!).

voltron_lions_all

So I started snagging these. Way too expensive to justify getting all at once, but over a period of time, didn’t "feel" the cost as much. And then some more time before getting them out of their packaging. I got them out of the packaging all in one sitting…barely. Compared to when I was a kid, modern toys’ packaging is ridiculous! All sorts of zip-ties and twist ties and bindings and lock-in plastic and tape and fasteners…I wound up with scissors, a pocket knife, and wire cutters to get these things apart from their packaging and into the open!

As individuals, the lions are pretty cool. I like the different sizes, and the looks in general, and definitely dig the sound effects from the Black Lion.

For detailed reviews of the individual Lions, please check out the following, over at Figure Fan Zero!

Legendary Blue and Yellow Lions

Legendary Green Lion

Legendary Red Lion

(and check out his blog in general…loads of great posts about all sorts of toys and such…very much a great read for the "adult collector" (as opposed to "for kids"). Those posts do a far superior job to anything I could do on these guys…and helped ensure my purchases on these after having thought idly about ’em before that!

voltron_assembled

I had a heckuva time getting thet lions configured to join together, and eventually had to resort to YouTube videos to kinda figure it out…I’m not 100% that I’ve got them assembled correctly, but they look good enough to me!

This massive Legendary Voltron stands supposedly about 16" tall…certainly taller than any proper shelves that I could put it on, so it’s with a talking Galactus that I have on top of a rack of comic boxes, and practically touches the ceiling up there!

Here, he’s standing on a longbox that’s on the floor, and reaches a table above.

I was quite amused at the sound effects generated as I cycled through the Back Lion’s "phrases," and my amusement increased to being highly impressed when I connected the Blue Lion and it acknowledged that the Blue Lion had just been connected, and told me the others were needed. As each connected, it was (correctly!) acknowledged!

voltron_with_donatello

Now, saying "16 inches" may not really mean much. So, here’s Legendary Voltron with a regular-sized Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Storage-Shell Donatello just for scale. Regular size standard TMNT action figure…huge Legendary Voltron.

Also an appropriate comparison, as both come from the same toy company!

Part of me can’t believe I bought all these…but past that, I’m quite impressed with this, and while I’m keeping Voltron assembled in this configuration, it’s awesome to know that I could disassemble it back into the five Lions, that are all individualized and poseable themselves, not just pieces of some "real" figure, but real actual figures themselves!

voltron_3_pics

And there’s those little "speeders" that came with the lions, each itself supposedly a large vehicle, in scale to the humans…showing the sheer scale of these Lions. There’s a storage compartment in each Lion for the speeders, so though they’re not seen in the assembled Voltron…they’re tucked inside each Lion!

History of the TMNT in Action Figures: Leonardo Box Set

I first saw this box set quite awhile back–probably late 2015, if not late 2014. It was interesting enough..and fairly appealing to me, as "traditionally" Leonardo was always my favorite of the four turtles (though over the years I’ve come to appreciate Raphael and it’s a toss-up on which of the two I’d claim as my favorite at any given moment).

So a box set with 8 of 9 major iterations over the years? Pretty nifty…but the price always seemed so ridiculously high for "just" a display piece like this…and then in it BEING a "display piece," something that would "just" sit around.

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_front

But I found it on "clearance" at Toys R Us, and the price was a lot more reasonable, pulling it down to "tempting" and getting me to "think about it." After stewing on it for a couple weeks, I went into a TRU store figuring I’d go ahead and buy one if they actually still had it (and for the clearance pricing).

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_back

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the store I was in had two of these left…but moreso, they had TMNT stuff 20% off…which included this (20% off the clearance price!).

So for what amounted to roughly $4.60 per figure, I went ahead and bought this. While the only "new" to me figures are the Movie Star Leonardo, the Next Mutation Leonardo, and the Fast Forward Leonardo, at contemporary new-in-box figures’ pricing, this was still worthwhile; and the "extra" copies of the other figures just made for an even better value!

If you want to see more detail about the contents of the figures and what this looks like out of the box, there’s a great video on YouTube with all of that covered.

What I’ll show off below is the back of the box, the actual "history" or "timeline" provided.

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_1984

While this one is billed as the 1984 version, this figure is actually just from the last several years–a wave of "variant" turtles with the sculpts based on the original comics’ style. Years earlier, NECA had done a series in this style as well (2010 or so, perhaps–before the Mirage sale of the property to Viacom/Nikelodeon or the current animated series.

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_1988

I had the original 1988 figure in its 1990-ish iteration; I also have the more recent re-release via the TMNT Classics line.

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_1992

I’m very disappointed that this figure doesn’t come with the belt…it looks "naked" without it. (Isn’t it amazing how complete or "clothed" the characters look with JUST a belt?!?). Based on that YouTube review, I do know without unboxing this set that the figure is not the flexible, rubbery material, so I’m a little less disappointed, as I definitely want to get the rest of these "Movie Star" TMNT (I already have Donatello).

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_1997

I don’t consciously remember seeing any of these at the moment, though I’d be surprised if I hadn’t–but by the time these would’ve been in stores, I was heavy into comics over getting TMNT figures; and I was never particularly enamored with the Next Mutation as it was. Like the reviewer in the video, I agree at it seeming odd to have this "art" image instead of a still from the show…but I’m guessing perhaps this is at least "card art" from the line?

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_2003

I still have my original 2003 Leonardo that I bought that January day in 2003, shortly before the premiere of the new series. I’d either actually seen or was hunting them down, and found the turtles while with a friend, and I believe I at least got all four turtles in one purchase, though I don’t recall on the other characters.

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_2005

I’d trailed off a bit by the time the show went to Fast Forward, and as such had no real context for any of the newer characters, and with occasional/rare exceptions have never much cared for a bunch of "variants" on a character within the same line…and I probably considered Fast Forward to just be a "wave," probably like the current Tales of the TMNT branding/re-issues going on with the present line.

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_2012

Of course I have the 2012 one–I’ve got more of the "current" line than I care to admit, though I’ve passed on plenty of characters and spent way too much time/effort hunting down other characters. I even bought a newer iteration of this "basic" figure to have on my desk at work at my last job.

history_of_tmnt_feat_leonardo_2014

I also had the 2014 movie Leo, and I think also Raphael, though I’m not sure where he’s gotten to at present. I was not particularly thrilled with the 2014 film…though I found the 2016 one to be surprisingly entertaining, especially by comparison, though I "missed" its theatrical run.


Based on info from that video review of this set, I was reminded of the missing 2007 film version of Leonardo…and that’s one that I’d actually like to get. I suspect, though, that with the destruction of the mold or such, that’ll be harder to come by than any of the other versions, thanks to the COLLECTOR-for-MONEY mindset on stuff (as I’ve been perfectly happy with various reissues of classic figures and don’t care if I get an actual VINTAGE "Party Wagon" or the more recent "print run," whichever is cheaper for roughly the same (good) condition!

I have a hard time justifying $15+ for a single figure, and even $9 makes me stop and "think hard" about it. But if you’re interested in this and can find it, seems at present that Toys R Us has whatever limited stock remains in stores of this set for a little over $40, which is quite worthwhile if the interest is there for you! (and still cheaper than most single "statues," so this is worthwhile at this price even if only as a static display piece!)

New TMNT Toys: Super Shredder, Crimson Leader, and Muckman

I finally tracked down the new Tales of the TMNT: Super Shredder figure. After seeing the wave back in early January (and stupidly "passing" on any of the characters) I then found myself highly interested in at least Super Shredder himself…said interest ramped up once I finally got the DVD and got to SEE some of the episodes with the character!

super_shredder_super_shredder_front

Here’s the figure, still on the card. I intend to get him off it, but that hasn’t quite happened just yet.

super_shredder_super_shredder_back

Here’s the back of the card. We see simply Super Shredder, and the four turtles variants. While they’re not horrible by any means, they’re "just" variants, and not particularly interesting to me, nor nostalgia-inducing or eye-catching, etc.

I was initially actually partly turned off BY the back of the card for this wave–I’ve long disliked the "generic" cards, far preferring the individualized ones, where you know simply by the card itself what figure it came with, and details are tailored TO the specific character!

super_shredder_crimson_leader_front

This time around, after checking numerous Walmarts, Toys R Us, and Target stores, when I found the figures actually in stock again, I was surprised by a couple of figures I’d had zero expectation of seeing.

Crimson Leader is one of them.

Didn’t remember seeing Tiger Claw quite like this (maybe I fell asleep or didn’t get as far into the DVD as I’d thought) so had zero expectation of a figure; didn’t know that I didn’t know and all that.

I nearly passed on it…but on the off-chance that I’d change my mind, I opted to buy it, to prevent an extremely expensive-through-buying-other-stuff-by-being-in-stores-I-otherwise-wouldn’t-be-in campaign later hunting for this later.

muckman2012_front

The biggest surprise to me was finding Muckman!

I’d have sworn I saw something about the figure at least a year back, maybe 2-ish, that a prototype had been created but the figure was then cancelled (to my definite disappointment).

When I saw the figure on the box of a new version of one of the vehicles for this line, I thought it was an old one, and had gotten past QC or some such since the figure had been cancelled

So finding this in-person, seeing it almost simultaneously with Super Shredder, I grabbed it off the peg, added it to my cart, and couldn’t wait to get out of the store with it to get it home and opened.

muckman2012_back

Here’s the back of Muckman’s card. Doing away with the Dimension X wave and such, we have some figures both new, recent, and old.

A couple versions of each turtle–the "Spyline" TMNT and the "Super Ninja" TMNT. We have the "regular" non-serpent Karai, a couple of "Ninja Action" turtles, and three of the Mutanimals.

On the "bad guys" side, we have Super Shredder and Crimson Leader…despite this figure obviously having a different sort of card back than the Super Shredder-specific figures.

Recent-ish figures like Armaggon and Robug are here, as well as mid-time figures like the mutant Shredders, Bebop, Rocksteady, and the Robotic Foot Soldier. I’m not sure if I’m glad to se Stockman-Fly hanging around…though I’m rather surprised at seeing Dogpound BACK in the mix…especially with ALSO having Rahzar in this same mix.

C’est la vie, I guess..!

muckman2012_profile

Muckman’s profile bit…

muckman2012_figure

…And the figure already out of his packaging/off the card!

muckman2012_card_good_guys

A slightly larger view of the figures on the card back for the good guys…

muckman2012_card_bad_guys

…and the bad.

muckman_1990s_2012_blogtrailer

And finally, the "classic" Muckman side-by-side with "new" Muckman.

I’m rather disappointed with the new one NOT having the manhole-cover foot…I know I’d seen an image of a "prototype" WITH it; it wasn’t til I had this figure out of its package that I realized the difference.

Annoying as some stuff is with over-reverence of the ’80s animated series…when there ARE good nods back with the TOYS I tend to quite appreciate it…it’s a small detail that would have REALLY made this a great figure in the nostalgic sense.

25+ Years Later: Wingnut!

I’ve been at least aware of the character for over 25 years now, and know at least one friend had the figure “back in the day,” but until this week, I’d never owned the figure myself.

wingnut_and_screwloose

Now, finally, I do…which puts me one step closer to the “classic” Mutanimals. Sadly, they never did do figures for Jaguar or Dreadmon…but they did for Wingnut & Screwloose, Man Ray (Ray Fillet), Mondo Gecko, and the outright villainous version of Leatherhead.

slash_before_and_after

Along with finally acquiring Wingnut & Screwloose…I was able to get a replacement belt for Slash, so he doesn’t look “naked” anymore.

muckman_before_and_after

And for Muckman, I got a replacement trashcan/backpack accessory, so he can once again carry around his little buddy Joe Eyeball.

storage_shell_turtles

And with the addition of a replacement Raphael, I now once again have all four classic “Storage Shell” TMNT.


I have a small list (comparatively) of figures I still need to “replace” to restore my “classic” collection from when I was a kid, as well as specific characters I particularly want to add to “complete” (-ish) my collection.

I hold no illusions of ever having ALL of the classic/vintage figures, particularly with all the variants that were made of the various characters. There are several “sets” of “variants” that I’m interested in, but my primary interest is in representation of CHARACTERS, period…and at that, ones that were “live” when I was originally collecting these on a regular basis, up to 1992/1993 or so.

I also find myself frustrated at how Target and Walmart along with Toys R Us have had barely ANY of the “current” figures lately, primarily having only the same several “Mutations” or “Mix ‘n Match” editions of characters.

I solidly regret NOT purchasing the “Super Shredder” figure the several times I came across it back in January, as it’s now become impossible-ish to find, and is the one figure from that sub-set that I want, given the enormity of that version of the character in the actual animated series in a way that I’d had no idea of when I actually could have bought the figure.

I may “spotlight” some of my “classic” figures collection in coming posts…at the least, likely new acquisitions as I add them to the collection.

Most imminently, I want to replace Splinter, Rocksteady, and Triceraton, and perhaps add Rat King, Leatherhead, and General Traag…as well as Wyrm and Merdude. Time shall tell!

wingnut_blogtrailer

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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

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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!

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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…

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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!

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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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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The figure itself, decked out in military gear.


Midshipman Mike

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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.

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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.

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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!

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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

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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.

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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!)

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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!

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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!

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