Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Review: DST Marvel Universe X-23 Mini-bust

Here's my third statue review already, four if you count the X-23 CMF. If you want to read the others, here are the links to the Bowen Logan MB, Kotobukiya SDCC exclusive X-Force Wolverine, and the CMF X-23.

Packaging and CoA:The packaging of the bust is similar to the other Marvel Universe busts produced by DST. It shows the promo pictures of the bust up front, on the sides and at the back, with the necessary character blurb written so it can introduce the character. On top are the words "Marvel Universe" while at the bottom is the number of the bust, mine is 1188/2500. The packaging seems pretty plain to me, it doesn't have the simple flair that's similar with the Kotobukiya pieces but it also doesn't have that real distinct look that Bowen has. The packaging is good enough but doesn't really grab attention.
Inside the box is a huge styrofoam layer so that it can protect the bust properly in case it isn't handled well. The X-23 bust itself is neatly placed in the middle, mine came with a plastic wrapper so that the styro wouldn't stick to it, and maybe protection from dust too. The condition of the box isn't really as important to me as long as it's still presentable but you should expect some storage wear especially since this is a pretty old bust, almost 5 years have passed since it was first produced. The one thing I like the most about the DST statues and busts are the CoA that comes with it, it just seems to add to the authenticity of the product you are buying. From what I know, Sideshow is the only current Marvel Statue producer who also gives CoAs, but I might be wrong.
The base could have been better the only thing that makes it an X-23 base is the number "23" written on it, simple improvements could have been done such as making the marks look like her claw marks, it's pretty simple really, they could've just used a mix of a pair of claw marks and a single claw slash instead of those four marks up front and three at the back.
Once again, it looks real simple, nothing eye catching about it. This is probably one of the worst bases I've seen. Very unimaginative in my opinion. Could have been a lot better, maybe even use a thick "X" as a base with 23 written in the upper right side, kind of like how her logo looks.

As for the figure itself, this is where I'm truly impressed by the bust. It makes up for the dullness of the base. It really captures how X-23 looks like when she first appeared together with the X-Men, just look at the cover of Uncanny X-Men 451:I know DST has made some hits and misses during their run with marvel busts and stats but i do believe that this piece is one of the better ones since it captures the early X-Men appearances of X-23. She is actually sculpted to look like an actual teenager, and the pose she has might be feminine but it doesn't give away too much. Sort of like X-23's personality. X-23 is the type of character that keeps her emotion underneath, that often times she would appear almost like a machine. Though that doesn't mean that she has no emotions. It's nice that the pose they chose for this bust isn't a seductive kind of pose, since she is a teenager and that would be out of character. In terms of sculpt, this bust is great. The hair and the bones on the costume are really detailed, plus an additional perk for me is that the claws are actually sturdy. The paint is also solid, i know that busts are SUPPOSED to be painted well but I still have to commend them on that.
But i have to admit that I am not all praises for this piece. One of my biggest complaints is that the costume she wears here is already obscure, it's not like it's a first appearance look. It's sort of just a forgotten look, DST could've waited a couple of months more before doing this..It would have been a lot better if she was wearing something else. I also think that her breasts are a bit big here, since the bust is actually portraying a character that's around 14 years old. I'm not sure how SKINTIGHT the costume is but the belly button is actually sculpted in.
In terms of scale, this is actually a pretty big bust, it's bigger than my Bowens and my other DST Wolverines. It would be a good thing if you were to display it alone or together with other X-23 stuff but if you decide to display it with other X-Men characters, she'd look like she's the same height as She-Hulk.
Compare the two busts, they're pretty much the same distance away from the camera. I know Wolverine's supposed to be shorter than her (5'6"-5'3") but I don't think it's supposed to be by this much. I guess for those planning to display her with other statues, be wary of the sizing.

Overall, I think that this is pretty much a good buy if you're a fan of X-23 and you're into this thing. It's pretty much sold lower than it's original price on ebay so if you like it, go ahead and check it out. But if you want to have just one X-23 piece, i suggest you go ahead and wait for the upcoming Bowen statue.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Full body final. AWESOME.

I'll definitely get this. This would be the main attraction of my collection. I can't wait to have this one. I'll make a review of this one once I get it, which I probably will. It's going to be a regular release so I'm going to make sure I get to see the next few Diamond Select Previews to anticipate to release.

Monday, August 16, 2010


Remember when i posted this?
I was anticipating this thing for almost a year now, and finally..a picture of the finished product was finally released..



I'm willing to starve my ass of just so I can buy this, hopefully it'll be a regular release instead of an exclusive..but HOPEFULLY, someone would give it as a gift. VERY unlikely.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Might STOP toy collecting

I'm actually considering stopping action figure collecting now. Why? Because I'm thinking of just moving on to something more expensive but comes out less often that the action figures...

Those STONE thinggies. I'm liking way too much of them now, especially with the Kotobukiya X-Force Wolverine and the Bowen X-Force Wolverine on my want list. And now something else was added to it..This was the first thing I saw in my e-mail the moment I woke up. I might stop toy collecting since I can't collect comics, action figures, and the occational statue/bust since that "occasional" might get more and more frequent. I sure as hell won't give up comics.

Here's my initial thoughts on the statue:
- It's better compared to the X-23 that was part of the SS X-Force Diorama. The pose is very similar but the Sideshow one overdid the strut and the thiness.
- Hair and face should be improved (Which will be)
- She actually has a teenagers body here, people usually forget that and make her look as busty as possible.
- I know it's trying to stay accurate to the reference art but I'm hoping it'll be both hands closed with claws out or at least both have claws out.
- I'm hoping they'll use a base similar to the other X-Men or maybe an X-base.
- Randy Bowen said an X-Force piece will also come out, I'll probably get that but I'm having second thoughts since it looks like this costume is good too. This is the one worn by the Eaglemoss X-23.

I'm hoping I'll be able to find the money for this, good thing it's probably still a year before this one comes out. I can save up for it little by little instead of suddenly releasing a boatload of money.

The Expendables Movie Thoughts

"THE EXPENDABLES is a hard-hitting action/thriller about a group of mercenaries hired to infiltrate a South American country and overthrow its ruthless dictator. Once the mission begins, the men realize things aren't quite as they appear, finding themselves caught in a dangerous web of deceit and betrayal. With their mission thwarted and an innocent life in danger the men struggle with an even tougher challenge, one that threatens to destroy this band of brothers.

Barney Ross (Sylvester Stallone) is a man with nothing to lose. Fearless and void of emotion, he is the Leader, the Sage and the Strategist of this tight-knit band of men who live on the fringe. His only attachment is to his pickup truck, his seaplane and his team of loyal modern-day warriors. His is a true cynic who describes what he does as "removing those hard to get at stains". The team behind him is made up of Lee Christmas (Jason Statham), former SAS and a savant with anything that has a blade; Yin Yang (Jet Li), a master at close-quarter combat; Hale Caesar (Terry Crews), who has known Barney for ten years and is a long-barrel weapons specialist; Toll Road (Randy Couture), a skilled demolitions expert and considered the intellect of the group; and Gunnar Jensen (Dolph Lundgren), a combat veteran and an expert in precision sniping who struggles with his own demons.

When the mysterious Church offers Barney a job no one else would take, Barney and his team embark on what appears to be a routine mission: overthrow General Gaza (David Zayas), the murderous dictator of the small island country of Vilena and end the years of death and destruction inflicted on its people. On a reconnaissance mission to Vilena, Barney and Christmas meet their contact Sandra (Giselle Itie), a local freedom-fighter with a dark secret. They also come to learn who their true enemy is: rogue ex-CIA operative James Monroe (Eric Roberts) and his henchman Paine (Steve Austin). When things go terribly wrong, Barney and Christmas are forced to leave Sandra behind, essentially giving her a death sentence. Haunted by this failure, Barney convinces the team to return to Vilena to rescue the hostage and finish the job he started. And to perhaps save a soul: his own."

If ever anyone actually reads this, remember way back when i posted my thoughts on "Kick Ass"? I said that I was real excited about this movie and that I was going to watch it. I did, and i think the movie was as good as advertised.If you like action movies, explotions, guns, blades, and a whole lot of violence, you'll love this one. Just ask my father, he usually falls asleep during movies but he was wide awake the entire time. That's how good this movie was, either that or it was Terry Crew's BFG's fault.

- Bruce Willis and Arnie's cameos. It would have been better if they had bigger parts but at least this movie featured the other great action stars from the past. Too bad guys like Van Damme and Segal didn't agree to show up, I'm guessing it would have been EPIC. The interaction between Stallone and Arnie (I don't know how to spell his last name so Arnie is what I'll call him), especially that line Sylvester says right after Arnold walks out.
- GREAT ACTION SCENES! The selling point of the movie didn't disappoint, what's so good about it is that the action isn't just limited to guns, it's very varied too. It was pretty much a mix of everything. They've got Hand-to-hand (wrestling, martial arts, street fight, etc.), Sharp stuff throwing, Big ass explotions, and of course. GUNS as in BIG FUCKING GUNS. Guns that wouldn't look out of place in a movie that features some of the biggest arms in Hollywood today.
- Story. I'm putting it as a pro because it was actually OKAY. I went in thinking that the story would be an after thought and would feel forced, the story is pretty much up to par with other great action movies. Another plus side to me is that they made sure that the story wouldn't get it the way of the action, try to read the synopsis up top, I'll wait for you to finish..
Done? The movie shows it, but they don't go into much detail in order to show it.
- Blood and Gore. This one had just the right amount of it. It wasn't overdone and they also didn't shy away from using it either. Some movies tend to go overboard with this stuff and end up looking fake, while others don't show it at all. this movie strikes the right balance between the two.

- Delivery. I'm not sure if it was the crappy sound system of the theatre I watched it in but I could barely make sense of some of the words they were saying. But then again, Stallone, Rourke, Statham..those guys aren't easily understood.
- Editing. Especially at the last part, this was a real down side for me, it might not really be that noticeable but they could have done a much better job.

If you enjoy action movies, you'll love this for sure. It's not THE GREATEST action movie, but the movie delivers and lives up to the high expectations set up by the trailers they've shown. The movie is 100% worth the money you'll spend watching this on the big screen.

Rating: 4.5/5

On a side note:
- The theatre i watched this in was SO CRAPPY. The movie stopped twice for around one second. Right around the middle of the movie, it stopped AGAIN. We pretty much waited for 5 minutes (first was the "Sorry for technical difficulties" then a Ne-Yo song played.."Mad") Then at around the end the sound got weaker, and there was even some parts of the movie when the sound just straigh up died. Shouldn't we get a free ticket?!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Wolverine In Hell

Come September, Wolverine Weapon X will end and Jason Aaron will be writing the new ongoing Wolverine. It'll be the Fourth Volume of the Wolverine title (1st being the mini-series, 2nd is the 1988-2003 run, 3rd started in 2003 and was replaced by Dark Wolverine after issue 74).

The 1st storyarc will deal with Wolverine in Hell. I don't know how he'll get there, theories range from Nightrawler's request, to the eye of Aggamotto. A lot of people aren't too excited about this, saying it's been done already blah, blah. But I'm actually looking forward to reading this one, why?
- Of the more recent Wolverine writers, Jason Aaron is probably the best.
- His Wolverine Weapon X run was great, other than the final storyarc with the Deathlocks.
- He was able to put Wolverine in different situations and made it an interesting read.
- Wolverine in Hell, facing of against all those he killed and put there!
Yes, in that teaser piture (probably a cover) you can see Sabretooth, Gorgon, Hand, Hydra, Nazi, and a Japanese guy who may or may not be Mariko's father.

Whil Wolverine is stuck in hell, a demon will possess his body. Terrorizing people in the Marvel Universe!It might have been done already in Enemy of The State but that was one hell of a ride, plus this time I think everyone knows that he's possessed. You might ask how the X-Men will take this, well it's been said in an interview that in issue 4, Wolverine's body will take on Colossus! Fastball special anyone?

For those of you who are still on the fence for getting this one, I suggest you do. Jason Aaron's Wolverine is more of as hit that a miss for most of the time. He writes entertaining stories, whether it be something that's never been done before (Wolverine in a Mental Institute) or something that seems to be done every now and again (Adamantium Men). We'll see how this thing goes, but given Aaron's track record..it's going to be one hell of a ride (pun not really that intended).

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Kotobukiya X-Force Wolverine PVC Statue

I already stated during my SDCC 2010 blog that this statue is still in my "not sure" list. One of the biggest reasons as to why I'm not sure about getting this yet is because it uses the same sculpt as the upcoming Tigerstripe Wolverine statue and that one really doesn't seem right to me, it looks like the body is really buldging but then the torso area seems real flat. Plus you can see the part where the head disconnects to the body. The negatives are really seen here but thanks to the dark colors of the X-Force uniform, it's not as evident there.
I'm still undecided about whether or not I'll get the X-Force Wolverine when it comes out (I'm not getting the other 2 versions). But lately it's been growing on me quite a bit. Unlike the Bowen X-Force Wolverine, which to me seems almost perfect (since Randy Bowen said that the underwear thing has been fixed already), I have a few things that I don't like about this piece. One of them is still the fact that it uses the same sculpt as Tigerstripe Wolverine, which means the problems I have with the torso are still there. I also don't like the base at all. They could've just made it the Danger Room Base depicting a war torn industrial place, or maybe if they wanted to make it differently they coulld have used dead purifier bodies as the base. I also think that the muscles are a bit overboard on this sulpt, I actually prefer the less muscular looks of most of today's comics compared to the bulky drawings that were almost considered as the norm during the 90s. Here's an example..this 1st picture seems to be the default Wolverine picture during the 90s or early 00s.
As you can see it's real bulky and overly muscular, it looks great in the comic books as long as it's not overly done, just the right amount of exagerrated muscles is nice enough. The style of the Kotobukiya Wolverine Statue reminds me of this style.

Not sure if there's really a default Wolverine picture now, but i think this might be the one.

Still muscular but not overly done, i prefer this one a whole lot more. Most of my busts have this type of body style, even my SDCC exclusive Kotobukiya X-Force Wolverine.

I must admit that even though I don't like the sculpt that much, it has a certain appeal that makes me want to get this thing. The X-Force costume seems to be highly detailed with the boots, gloves, mask and even the design around the knee. It's really similar to how Mike Choi drew Wolverine's X-Force uniform in the comic books. It has a real dynamic pose. It's the kind of pose that you can imagine Wolverine doing right before he screams and starts to attack. Plus, there's also news that the sculpt of this thing isn't final yet and that the base will be changed, so that's good news for me. I think that this piece is something that might not be for everyone but for those who like it, they'll like it very much. And i think the biggest perk of this piece is that it will most probably come with an unmasked head. I already told you earlier about the head not being a part of the whole body, the reason is that you can exchange the head with an unmaksed one. As of now, I'd probably get this if it'll be cheaper than the Bowen X-Force Wolverine (I'm assuming the Bowen will drop at no more than $200, so this one i'm hoping will be around $150), if it's going to be released a few months after the Bowen one (if i have the money, i'll get this 100%), and if they do something about the base. I really really don't like the base, it seems out of place. They could go with my earlier siggestions or even just remove the brown part altogether and just place him on a bigger gargoyle, anything that doesn't seem out of place.