Monday, May 14, 2012

Some Action Figure Thoughts

So my interest in action figures is riding at a high not seen since M.A.S.K. was still on TV (I used to own Brad Turner and his Condor that turned from a motorcycle into a helicopter. We had such great toys in the 80's). It started with the relatively inexpensive and highly collectible Marvel Heroics and has gotten ever so slightly out of control.

I don't really know anyone else who collects action figures, but I've seen enough Big Bang Theory episodes to know that hardcore collectors know a lot about what makes a figure valuable or worthless. I know next to nothing when it comes to action figures. I know what I like, and I collect things that I like. What should follow (I don't know because I haven't written it yet) are some of the tenets that guide my action figure collecting.

1. I open my figures immediately and I toss the packaging. I buy things because I like to play with them. Sure, I keep them on the shelf most of the time, but sometimes I pull them down and play with them. You can't play with a plastic bubble and cardboard backing (Maybe you can, but I just find it weird). I know I'm taking away from some of the value when I do that, but that just leads to the second point.

2. I don't really buy expensive action figures. Heroics cost a buck a piece. Some of my figures were bought used, which made 'em really cheap. Some of my figures were given to me as gifts, which is the very cheapest ever. The most I have ever spent on a figure is $20, and that was for a very large and awesome Voltron figure, and I bought it brand new.

3. I only collect things I like. When I bought the Golden Age Hourman and Green Lantern, I could have also picked up Gold (of Metal Men fame), which is a great looking figure and from what I've read is probably the most highly prized figure in this series of DC Universe Classics figures. There was also a great price on Zatanna, but I say meh to both of those figures. They have popped up as crossover characters in some of the comics I've read, but I don't really care about Gold or Zatanna (Harley Quinn on the other hand...). I bought Alan Scott and Rex Tyler because they're two of my favorite characters from the original Justice Society. If they had a Specter action figure, I woulda been all over it. I honestly don't care which figures are more expensive or which are a better investment.

4. I do care a bit about which version of a figure I'm collecting. Here's the thing: Michael Bay ruined the aesthetics of Transformers. Look at the clean lines and perfect colors of the original 80's transformers (either the toys or the tv show itself, it doesn't matter which) and compare them with the dull colors of the walking piles of junk Michael Bay crapped out. I could pick up a Michael Bay Optimus Prime right now for next to nothing, but I don't want it. I could pick up the robot formerly known as Bumblebee (Bumblebee is a VW Bug, not a Chevy Camero) but I don't want it. So yeah, if an inferior movie version of a toy exists, I don't want it. Side note: I think it's funny that people are coming around to my way of thinking with Michael Bay. His proposed alien movie (It's supposed to be Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, but he intends to portray TMNT as aliens, so they may or may not be teenagers, probably aren't mutants, can't be ninjas because ninjitsu is a martial arts form from Earth, and they can't even be considered turtles. So yeah, he's an idiot) has caused a lot of outrage. Where was all the outrage when he ruined Transformers? I felt like the only person who cared. I didn't go see any of his Transformers movies, and I certainly won't want to see his alien non-teenage non-mutant non-ninja non-turtle movie. I scoff at the very idea of Michael Bay </nerdrant>.

I think that pretty much covers it for now. I'm sure there'll be more to it when I've gone deeper into the sickness that is action figure collecting, but that's all I've got for now. Just know that I will absolutely be buying some old Mattel Guts figures, and when I get the underwater demolition team they'll be going with me into the bathtub just like they did in the 80's. And on that disturbing note...the end.

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