Wednesday, December 6, 2017

40 Years of Firestorm

"Shag" Matthews, who created a website called Firestorm Fan (now largely defunct) and subsequently launched a (mostly) Firestorm-specific podcast and a network of other related podcasts (which is very much alive these days), brought my attention to the fact that today, December 6th, 2017, is the 40th anniversary of the publication of the first issue of Firestorm: The Nuclear Man, which featured Firestorm's first-ever appearance! While long-time readers already know of my affection for the character, I confess that I hadn't been keeping up with this particular anniversary (if I had, I'd have planned ahead to feature one of the Firestorm action figures I have, something I'm not in a position to make happen before the day ends). But now that I do know about it, I can't just let it go by without notice!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Wipe-Out (2012) and G1 Full-Tilt (1986)

The modern era of Transformers toys has provided numerous opportunities for toys of characters with increasingly obscure origins. Some are easily explained simply by providing the reference to their origin and being done with it (say, for example, Stripes and Nightstalker, cassettes that came with the 2012 Encore reissue of Twincast). Others require going into more detail. Such is the case with Wipe-Out, a Japanese exclusive redeco of Reveal the Shield Windcharger.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Powerdasher Sky Dasher/Cromar (1984)

Before Reflector. Before the Omnibots. There were the Powerdashers.

Well, maybe that stretches the point just a little bit. After all, the Omnibots were made available on the very same flyer as the Powerdashers, which introduced the concept of mail-away exclusives to young Transformers fans in 1984. But I still think there's a case to be made for the Powerdashers being the first.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

San Diego Comic-Con 2012 Terrorcon Cliffjumper

For Halloween, I thought it would be appropriate to feature an example of a Transformer zombie. To explain how "Terrorcon" Cliffjumper came to be, however, I need to set up some back story.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Game Show Board Games: Concentration (14th edition, 1970) and Classic Concentration (1988)

I've been enjoying watching (and re-watching) some of my favorite classic game shows on the 2-year old Buzzr network. If I have any complaints about the network at all, it is the simple fact that, although they theoretically have access to the entire FremantleMedia library of shows (reportedly over 40,000 episodes worth), the actual content shown rotates through a tiny fraction of that, which repeats more-or-less monthly (with occasional refreshes a couple of times a year). Naturally, this means that fans regularly ask Buzzr to air shows not currently available on the network. Concentration is one of these frequently-suggested shows.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Generations GDO Wheelie (2012)

Poor Wheelie just never gets any respect. From pretty much the moment he first appeared in the 1986 animated Transformers movie, he's been considered a joke to many fans. Admittedly, with his penchant for speaking in rhyme for absolutely every little thing, Wheelie made himself a target pretty much immediately, and attempts to use the character in (English-language) fiction over the years have had mixed success with the concept, at best.* It may thus come as a surprise to learn that Wheelie's 2012 toy (only the third distinct mold to be used for the character in over 25 years) was actually in high demand.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Cloudburst (1988)

This past weekend, the first HasCon took place. It seemed to me that there were surprisingly few Transformers items revealed (and that's not even accounting for a well-publicized leak a few months ago), but one of the items that was was a tiny version of the G1 Pretender Cloudburst, which will host a "Prime Master" version of Micronus, one of the "Primes" for which the upcoming Power of the Primes line is named. This seems a good time to feature the original Cloudburst. Although I've featured Pretenders a few times on this blog in the past, I have never yet featured any of the first wave of Pretenders to be released, and doing so with Cloudburst offers an opportunity to demonstrate how the concept evolved over time.
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