Heroes included at no extra cost

The FalconIf you’re not interested in a very brief rant about Star Wars figures, you might as well skip this one.

I see that the only way to get a 3.75″ scale Maz Kanata figure is going to be in a box set that repackages all the Finn and Rey figures that didn’t sell individually last fall. It’s kind of cringeworthy because the trailers made it very clear: these people, they are who the movie is about. Oh, and Han and Chewie show up too. We knew these people, and the new X-Wing pilot, were our new heroes.

Of course, in the southern states (such as where I hail from), Rey and Finn were peg warmers. It was almost as if everyone was rejecting the notion that a woman and a black guy were the heroes of the new Star Wars. (What, did they think Mace Windu was a fluke?)

So here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to go ahead and get this new box set, just for Maz. Maz is cool; Maz almost makes the movie and I’m beyond happy that she’s already confirmed as being in the next one. I will then take the spare Rey, Finn and BB-8 – all of whom I already have – and put them in my ’78 Kenner Falcon, which sits in the box 364 days out of the year. I will enclose a handwritten note about how foolish people still were in 2015, and how I expect whoever is receiving the note (and the ship and its new crew) to do, and be, better than we were in 2015.

Maybe it’ll be my grandkids.
Maybe it’ll be someone else’s grandkids.
Maybe it’ll be somebody who gets the message, in which case the Millennium Falcon once again saves the day.

Cthulhu fun funded!

Not only did Warpo, the makers of the prospective “Legends of Cthulhu” retro-style action figure line, reach their minimum funding goal, they did it in three days.

Legends of Cthulhu
See, I wasn’t the only one who thought this figure was awesome!

Keep an eye on their Kickstarter – stretch goals (which may include other product announcements) are due to be revealed soon. But what convinced everyone to part ways with their money for the greater good of Cthulhu? The answer may be simple: the visual presentation and support for this was pitch-perfect. Read More

At the mountains of little plastic madness

This morning, my attention was drawn to a Kickstarter campaign to fund a short-run, homebrew toy company making a new line of Star Wars action figures based on the stories of H.P. Lovecraft. The donation/invstment thresholds at which you got Neat Stuff – including a full set of all four figures, a print of the packaging artwork free of text and logos, and other goodies – were really reasonable. I was in love! With the 3 3/4-inch spawn of Cthulhu!

(Before going any further, those interested can find the Kickstarter here.) And at the same time, I realized that this has got to stop. The boutique, niche-interest toymakers of the world have got to stop tempting me with things specifically engineered to appeal to multiple flavors of retro nostalgia at once. Read More

Pooka Procurement Paradox: SOLVED

Pooka!For better or worse, my son has grown up in a microcosm, a bit of a fantasy-land already created by his daddy long before he came along, in which video games have related toys and memorabilia that go with them. He got hooked on Mario, and boom, instant Mario figure collection (which has kept growing, incidentally – I suppose I started him young in this department)). He got hooked on Sonic, and boom, Sonic and Tails and friends arrive in plush form (he was more interested in plushies than in action figures). Pac-Man? No problem. There’a a pac for that. (Please don’t tell him that there are toys coming out for Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures.) But Dig Dug? Not so easy. There’s an insanely expensive plushie available directly from Namco ($30??!?), and as much as he’d like it… we’re a little strapped for cash. So I challenged him to make his own. I would provide supplies for him.

Wanna see the prototype Pooka he came up with? Read More

Pre-Christmas fit check

EnterpriseThere’s a time-honored engineering practice called a fit check. You take real pieces of real stuff – even if it’s not quite to full factory specs – and make sure it at least fits together the way it’s supposed to. If it doesn’t, you refine the shape and size and do another fit check. When everything fits, you’re good to go. Even though it was never meant to fly into space, the shuttle Enterprise (seen here) spent a lot of time strapped to real fuel tanks and real booster rockets at Kennedy and at Vandenberg AFB, because it was the only fully-constructed shuttle that could be spared for fit checks. Read More

My Christmas wish list

Dark HelmetIt’s not very long (hey, no comments from the peanut gallery), and to be honest I’m a little embarrassed about posting it. You’d think these would be reasonably easy to get. But these are supposedly mass-marketed things that have yet to make an appearance in my neck of the woods. The heck?

By the way, this is just me thinking out loud – I’m not actually expecting anyone to buy me anything. It’s just kind of funny (in an irritating sort of way) that these apparently-common-everywhere-else items are ungettable here. 😆 Read More

Conventional thinking: Darkon & ComiCon-Way after-action report

What a long, strange couple of weekends it’s been.

VWORP!1 + PDF

Last weekend I went to Darkon in Tulsa (a first-year horror-themed event put on by the folks behind Tulsa Trek Expo), and this weekend I was at another first-time event, ComiCon-Way in Conway, Arkansas. But more than just the latest stops on my tour of nearby conventions to promote VWORP!1, these were Little E’s first conventions. Whereas previous conventions were “daddy is gone this weekend,” now he wonders what we’re going to do, and what we’re going to see, next weekend. Read More