Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter! from Stunt Zombie and friends!

I think Easter is one of the few holidays that actually has better candy than Halloween. Sure, there are a lot of great candies that come out for Halloween, but it's also a time when you see tons of knockoff candies on the shelves. You know the ones I'm talking about; they come in orange or black wax coated wrappers, stick to your teeth like glue, and generally taste like they're a couple decades old.  Well, I don't see that sort of thing with Easter. Sure, you get cheaper candies if you buy the pre-made baskets, otherwise, most of the candy makers bring out their A-game for the Easter Holiday. But this post isn't about the politics of holiday candies, this is about my Easter haul.

When Chelsea and I started dating, we decided we wanted to make sure every Christmas has a little bit of the fun and magic that we remembered as children. That's why she'll most likely get a Disney movie, or something Muppets related, while I'll likely find Legos or an action figure or two under the tree. The same thing goes for Easter. Sure, we're both in our 30's now, but that doesn't mean we still don't enjoy hunting around the house for our baskets.  

Okay, enough of this. Let's see what was in my baskets!



That Spiderman pail has been my "basket" since we started dating, and I have to admit, I never get tired of seeing it. Since there wasn't enough room for everything in the pail, Chelsea also got me this little Star Wars lunchbox, which will come in handy for a later post.


Giant Moustache Lollipop! Now that is one epic fruity stache! I haven't cracked this one open yet, it just seems like it would be a shame to run such a wonderful facsimile of facial hair. I just want to walk around town holding this in front of my face and talk with a bad British accent. 

 
Yoda PEZ and Lightsaber lollipop! I have to admit, I'm not a huge fan of the PEZ candies, but I always get a kick out of the PEZ dispensers. I also like the idea of Yoda as a PEZ dispenser. "Candy you seek? Tilt back my head, and find you shall." 

The lightsaber is another one I haven't opened yet, but if color is an accurate gauge of flavor, then I'm guessing this one is blueberry. The candy part will actually light up when you push the button on the hilt. It really didn't show up well enough on camera for me to post it though.  I might have to try again later tonight.

Choco-Treasure Spiderman! Since the deadly assault Kinder eggs are illegal to import into this country, some enterprising folks have found a way to make chocolate eggs safe for American children. I actually tried this one right after the photo, and I have to admit the chocolate wasn't that good. I'm not sure if it was the close proximity to the plastic egg inside, or if they use cheaper chocolate to keep the costs down. It just seemed a bit waxy, and didn't have the usual richness of other makers' milk chocolate. I would post a pic of the toy surprise, but unfortunately, it smelled of chocolate, and I accidentally ate it. Give me a couple days, and I'll get some shots of it.


Mario Kart Klik candy dispenser. This is the first candy dispenser I've seen that comes with a warning not to aim at the eyes or the face. I tried it out, and it launches the "Smarties" with quite a bit of force. If I were at dinner, and someone across the table asked for a piece of candy, I'm confident this thing could launch it into their mouth. 

This one comes with a bonus:

Mario and his kart are detachable! This alone could keep me occupied for hours. 


Pocky...? Okay, so Pocky isn't necessarily and Easter candy, but I still love it. 





Cadbury Creme Eggs and Mini Creme Eggs, Snickers egg, Reese's Peanut Butter Egg, Starburst jelly beans. These guys are all pretty much Easter staples. The Snickers and Reese's eggs are newer, but they've still been around long enough to become traditional. Same with the Starburst jelly beans. I find myself choosing these over regular jelly beans just about every time. At least with the Starburst ones, I don't have to worry about eating the licorice flavored beans. I think I actually prefer the Mini Cadbury eggs to the full size. All of these candies are sweet, but the Cadbury Creme Eggs take it to the next level. At least with the mini versions, I don't feel like I'm going to have diabetes after eating one.


Edible Grass. This is another one that I just started seeing within the last couple of years. It has the texture and taste of lightly sweetened styrofoam strips, but I still can't stop myself from enjoying eating it. I'm almost scared to look at the ingredients, because I'll probably discover it's made from recycled packing peanuts.


Giant Reese's Peanut Butter Egg. My mom used to get me the large coconut eggs every year. I'd nibble on them for a while, but inevitably, they ended up getting tossed in the trash. Sticking them in the freezer wouldn't work either, because the eggs would be forgotten, only to be rediscovered years later when the freezer needed a good defrosting.  Eventually, the same company would come out with a peanut butter version, but it just couldn't compare to the smaller Reese's Eggs. I bring that up, because I'm really hoping this is just like the smaller Reese's, just larger. I can't remember ever having a bad Reese's product, so I have high hopes for this one.

Lastly, what would Easter be without toys? This year, Chelsea picked up a few of the Lego Series 9 Mini-figures from five below. 


I really wanted Chicken Suit Guy and Jeckyll/Hyde since I first saw them.  The waiter guy wasn't on my list, but I can still find a use for him. Now if I could just get my hands on an Alien Avenger, I'll have all the ones I wanted from this series.

I just noticed this, but from this angle, the Waiter looks really sad. Usually he looks like he's smirking, but in the photo he seems so down. Maybe the two guys next to him stiffed him on the tip. Jekyll looks like the sort of person that would do that. 

Well, there you have it, the end result of another happy Easter. I hope it was a good one for the rest of you. See you all again soon!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Young love

This week's assignment from the League of Extraordinary Bloggers is:

When I was a kid, my favorite ______________ was _____________.

You wouldn't think this would be such a tough question, but I've been racking my brain for the answer for the past week now. I wasn't kidding when I commented that my favorite thing changed on a weekly basis. Should I go with a toy, or a movie? How about a TV show? Finally, after much deliberation, I have an answer.

When I was a kid, my favorite comic book ad was for Kenner's Super Powers. Specifically, this one:








I seem to remember seeing this ad on the back cover of a Jemm: Son of Saturn comic. The sad thing was, I didn't see this ad until 1988 or 89, and Super Powers had been out of the nearby stores for a couple years by then. It was also after my Superman had gotten broken, and after my Robin got chewed up by our dog. Every time I looked at the back page of that comic, I missed those two toys more and more. I still had most of a Hawkman, Martian Manhunter and Doctor Fate, but that did little to lessen pain I felt over the loss of my two favorite action figures at the time.

It's probably one of the coolest ads I've ever seen, with the hand operated Superman action figure beating up an illustrated Lex Luthor. Thinking about the implications of that scenario gives me a headache. Not only did Lex Luthor stumble upon a photorealistic universe, he ended up in one where everyone is controlled by huge disembodied hands. That isn't a look of pain on his face, that is a look of complete and utter terror. Lex has seen behind the curtain, and he'll never be the same man again.

This advertisement is still effective, even today. It took me hours to write a few short paragraphs, because I kept going back and forth to e-Bay, trying to get my hands on another Hawkman or Superman. Dammit Kenner, even though you're gone, you've still got it.

Here are some of the other League members' favorites

That Figures' favorite Star Wars figure was..you'll have to read it to find out.

Adventures in Gaming really loved his bicycles.

Random Nerdness was the Master of his Universe.

Goodwill Hunting for Geeks loved going on big adventures with little figures

Fortune and Glory (Days) shares some great childhood photos.

Tupa's Treasures has had a lifelong companion in the form of Winnie the Pooh.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Judge me by my size do you?





These two were an impulse buy at Dollar General a few months ago. Yoda only has articulation in his arms, wrists, and neck, but Darth Vader manages to pack in 7 points of articulation in a two inch figure. They may be targeted to the younger kids, but I think they're pretty darn cool in my book. I'm actually a little surprised at how detailed Darth Vader is compared to the vintage version. This little guy manages to have more detail and paint apps, as well as a cloth cape. Not too shabby for $3 bucks.

These two guys are fun and durable, pretty much the epitome of what a toy should be.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Guiltiest pleasures



I finally decided to take join up with the League of Extraordinary Bloggers, and boy did I pick a good week to do it. The topic for this week's assignment was "Guilty Pleasures".  It wasn't until I started trying to figure out what I was going to write for this post that I realized I have a ton of guilty pleasures. The hardest part is going to be narrowing down the list for you.




Saved By The Bell- It's awful, it's cheesy, and if I manage to catch it while I'm flipping through the channels, I  have to stop and watch it. I actually resembled "Screech" when I was younger, so of course I had to hear that all through high school. Since some of those folks ended up choosing a life of crime, I also got to hear it when I worked at the local jail. Nothing like doing your rounds and having someone yell out "Screech!". Fun times..



Pics from www.yojoe.com. Check'em out, they're awesome!


G.I. Joe Star Brigade/Mega Marines- I know these two lines get a lot of hate from most, but I can't help but love them. I loved the armored versions of the Joes introduced by the Star Brigade line, even if there was rampant parts re-usage. Robo-Joe up there was probably the most "Extreme" out of all of them, with his bright orange paint scheme, and he also happened to be my favorite. And the Mega Marines, how could you not like them? They mixed G.I. Joe and Playdoh! Sure, they suffered from the early 90's "Neon Syndrome", but that's what made them MEGA! They were so badass, they didn't need to blend in with their surroundings. I used to love Bio-Viper up there, mainly because I liked the concept of Cobra Eel troops being mutated into undersea monsters. I also loved the odd baked in smell that came with every Bio-Viper.



Street Fighter:The Movie!- Jean Claude Van Damme playing an American Colonel with a heavy French accent? Check. Raul Julia playing the charismatic M. Bison while wearing a leather muscle suit? Check. Boxers, sumos, ninjas, and stealth boats? Check. Seriously, how can anyone not enjoy this movie? You know what, while we're at it, go ahead and add Double Dragon and the first Mortal Kombat movie to the list as well.




Catalogs- I absolutely love catalogs. Even if they don't have anything I would ever think about buying, I will still sit there and pore over every page. I blame it on Sears and their Wishbooks. I would spend hours thumbing through one of those, picking out what I wanted for Christmas that year. You could tell I spent all my time looking at the toy sections. I looked at those pages so much I swear I wore the pictures out. Eventually the pages would fall out, and I would have to wait for the next one to come. I still sign up for catalogs wherever I can. The internet has been bullying paper catalogs out of existence, but there are still some companies that put out printed books showcasing their wares.



Reality TV- I think I have a secret addiction to reality TV programs. I love to sit on the couch and yell at people on Hoarding when they refuse to throw away a yogurt cup because they could use it to hold change. I can't help but enjoy it when a behemoth of a chef yells at restaurant owners because they've forgotten to clean their kitchen since 1985. And I loved watching King of the Nerds, because it actually made a nerd competition show look pretty cool. I mean, most of their down time was spent drinking and partying. Who said nerds don't know how to live it up?



Random Trivia- This one brings me so much pleasure, and so much ire at the same time. I love trivia, especially movie trivia. It drives my girlfriend crazy, because I'll spend more time reading trivia about a movie, than I do actually watching the movie. I can't help that I enjoy knowing little tidbits of information from behind the scenes. It's not just movie trivia that peaks my interest though. Science, history, video games, toys, literature..if there's trivia about it, I want to read it. I like to think that if benevolent aliens held a trivia competition for the fate of the planet, I would be able to save the world.



I'm glad I'm not the only one with odd guilty pleasures. Here's what some of the other folks in the blogosphere enjoy.

The Goodwill Geek and I should have a movie night.

Jaime of shezcrafti saw the signs and became Ace of the Base. Egads that came out horribly..

Shawn from Branded in the 80's would have made a great mom from the 80's.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

What was in my pockets?

I posed the question on EDC forums a couple months ago, what would your 8 year old self have had in their pockets? Here's a pic of the sort of things you might find if I were to empty my pockets as a kid:



Going roughly from left to right:

1. Lip balm. I know there wasn't such a thing as Jolly Rancher lip balm when I was 8, but this is the only one I had at picture time. I seem to remember Chap Stik being the only option, and that came in two flavors, Regular and Cherry. Why do they make lip balms in different flavors anyway? It says right on the package that you're not supposed to eat it. Maybe it's to entice us to keep licking our lips, ultimately requiring us to use more lip balm. Those Chap Stik folks, they're smarter than you think.

2. Candy. In this case, a pack of Wrigley's DoubleMint gum. I almost always preferred gum to most other candies. It was always a tossup between Bubble Yum and Bubblicious, but they were pretty much equals in my eyes. The flavor never really lasted that long, but at least I could entertain myself by blowing bubbles. The great thing about those two gums is that they weren't particularly sticky, so if the bubble popped, it wouldn't take off half your face when you tried to pull the gum free. Sometimes I would choose Bazooka Joe, but that was only if I couldn't afford the other two. At least Bazooka got a little easier to chew after riding around in a warm pocket for a while.

3. Change. I was lucky enough to get an allowance for doing chores around the house. I could usually get $3-5 a week by helping to vacuum, wash the dishes, mow the lawn, etc..Eventually I started saving up my lunch money too, so by the end of the week I might have 6 or 7 dollars to buy myself something on our weekly shopping trips. That something usually ended up being a G.I. Joe or TMNT figure, unless I managed to save up for a couple of weeks, then I might get myself something bigger, like a vehicle or a Lego set. Course, now I wish I had just saved it all up and paid my way through school. Just one of the things to include in the note to my 8 year old self when they figure out how to send mail back in time.

4. Random keys. I don't know why, but I had this fascination with having a key ring. I would find random keys in our junk drawers,put them all on the same key ring and carry them around with me. Sometimes, when nobody was looking, I would try them in a lock, just to see if they worked. Fortunately, they never did.

5. Random gumball machine prizes. When I was in 3rd and 4th grade, my mom would take me to school and pick me up in the afternoons. On the way home, we would always stop at the A&P, and she would give me a couple of quarters to use in the gumball machines there. Most of the time I would get some random, cheap piece of jewelry, or a crappy sticker. Sometimes though, I'd get lucky enough to find a small plastic spaceship, or a knockoff M.U.S.C.L.E. (which will just be MUSCLE from now on) figure. At least I thought they were knockoffs. It seems I happened to find the only vending machine in existence that was stock with actual, real as can be MUSCLE guys. Purple mech and Possible Godzilla/Ultraman villain here would have thrilled me as a kid, and I would have carried them everywhere.

6. Paperclips. Along with random keys, I would always keep a paperclip with me. This was about the time I was first exposed to MacGuyver and his ingenuity with common household objects fascinated me. I wasn't old enough for a Swiss Army Knife at that point, but I had no trouble getting my hands on paperclips. All I needed was a rubber band and some toothpicks, and could make a tiny bow and arrow. Or, if I had just seen a spy movie, I would try my luck with making a lockpick. I think I managed to actually open one lock, though it was one of those cheesy padlocks on a tin full of chocolate. Still, I got me some of that chocolate.

7. G.I Joe figures. I always had a favorite G.I. Joe figure. Most of the time it was Snake Eyes, but every now and then, someone else would edge him out. Some days it would be Freefall, Big Ben, or before I lost him, Tunnel Rat. I would always leave their weapons at home, for fear of losing them. Thanks to those guys, I never had a dull moment at the grocery store, or at my grandmother's house. We would always find some sort of trouble adventures to get in to.

So that's the sort of stuff 8 year old Chris would have carried. What about all you other folks?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

I'm sending out an S.O.S

Here's the deal. I'm trying to find the name of a toy I used to have in the late 80's early 90's. It was basically a rubber pizza, about 12" around, and it had toppings printed on it. The premise was you could toss it like real dough and perform tricks with it. I was under the impression that it was called Throw Dough, which happens to be a product endorsed by the U.S. Pizza Team (!?) It was developed around the right time, but it doesn't seem like Throw Dough was ever marketed as a toy.

I've scoured the web for even a mention of it, just part of a picture of a picture, but have had no luck. That's why I've turned to you folks for assistance, because I know someone else out there has to have seen this thing or heard of it. If you have any info, just leave me a message in the comments, or shoot me an email.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Marvel Mega Blocks Figures


I picked up Captain America and Venom here while Chelsea and I were on our little mini vacation. They're actually rather detailed for their size, especially Cap's uniform. Venom of course doesn't have much in the way of detail on his costume as it is, but I think they did a good job on the face. I almost feel like they could have had a tongue hanging out there though. As odd as it sounds, Venom's tongue is iconic, and is as much a part of the character as his white spider emblem. Venom's also quite a bit bigger than Cap, another nice little detail.

As you can see, Captain America comes with a nicely scaled shield



while Venom comes with...two whips?


I get what they were trying to do, but I think it would have worked better if they were able to clip to his wrists. In the end though, I think I still prefer the Lego Minifigs. I think it all comes down to simplicity. I feel like a broken record these days, but I'm really starting to appreciate the simpler things. As someone I talked to a couple days ago said, "There's just something about 5 points of articulation". In other words, they're cool figures, but just not for me.





Thursday, March 7, 2013

Hey baby..--


"Hey Rogue, you're looking mighty nice today. How'd you like to do some swingin'?"





"I guess I should told her I meant "web-swinging"".

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Time to Bossk in his glory!


Ol' Bossk here is part of my haul from Amazon last month. He's been one of my favorite bounty hunters since I first saw him standing on the bridge of the Executioner in The Empire Strikes back. Other than Boba Fett, he's the only other bounty hunter that had a speaking role in that scene. Well, it was more like a growling role, than speaking, but you get my poi---*OOF*


Darth Vader: "You fool! He will not survive if you leave him in the bubble!"

Boba Fett: "I say he'll be fine. He's been in there for 15 years already. What's a couple more going to hurt? Besides, do you know what a 7 foot tall humanoid lizard smells like?"

Darth Vader: "No, I don't."

Boba Fett: "I don't either, but I know it's awful"


Vader: "It doesn't matter now, it is done."

Bossk: "Hey Boba, Darth. 'Sup? Did I miss anything?"


Anyway..this is definitely an improvement over the original Bossk. There's a lot more detail in the scales and the flightsuit, and he just looks so much more intimidating. He doesn't have that odd smile found on the visage of the vintage figure. He also comes with a blaster pistol and an updated version of his original rifle. Unfortunately, he can't really hold the rifle and it only really works when it's slung over his shoulder. It still looks pretty cool though. The only thing that bugs me about Bossk is his uniform. The man must be thrifty, because I find it hard to believe he couldn't find a flightsuit in the entire galaxy to fit him.

I like to think that after turning over Han Solo to Jabba the Hutt, the next stop on his journey would be to a galactic tailor. I know some folks tend to hand down their shirts and pants to their younger siblings, but it looks like Bossk beat up his younger brother and stole his clothes. Still, I guess it beats a naked lizard man cavorting all over the galaxy.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

It was time for a change

And boy did I make a change.

Before:



After:



I promise I had the idea before I started drinking the wine.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Random stuff


Here's a random shot of Don in the snow. I took a pic of him in the freezer a while back, but I think I like this one more. The vegetation almost looks like it's to scale.


Here I am relaxing on the couch with Kirby the Wondermutt. One of these days, I need to dedicate a post to him. He's absolutely the best dog I've ever had.


Jell-O shot "watermelons". Chelsea made these when we went on vacation with some friends of ours. I'm not sure how she did it, but it must have involved magic.


Ah yes, Bob's trying to figure out how he's going to fit my new knife in his pocket. The joke's on him, he doesn't have pockets.

This weekend we're going on a little excursion, so I'm hoping to have lots of photos to share when we get home. Stay tuned..
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