This week, I was invited to two advance movie screenings. One starred Scarlet Witch, Shadow King, & Mantis. The other starred Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye, & Punisher. So I went to the first. Not only did I enjoy it very much, it’s tangentially in the nerdy wheelhouse. Unfortunately I’m not supposed to tell you about it because of a stupid NDA which prevents me from building advance buzz for the movie without being subject to legal action. Unless the point of that clause is reverse psychology. Even with the astronomical odds of the studio reading my blog, I’ll err on the side of paranoia & talk toys today.
The Bradford Exchange of Canada is producing a talking 12″ Justin Trudeau doll! Several articles are reporting that this is a bizarre product, seemingly oblivious to the fact that replicas of prominent political leaders are quite common in the high end 1/6 scale doll world. What’s actually bizarre is that the Bradford Exchange & its international affiliate websites refuse to sell this Prime Minister effigy outside of Canada!
Speaking of dreamy world leaders, here’s T’Challa!
I’m on record for wishing MCU Black Panther’s silver accents were golden. (Quit hogging all the gold, Iron Man!) A week ago, a digital modification of the Hot Toys figure tricked some folks into thinking it’s he new costume for the Black Panther movie. When I saw it, I thought: “If only I hadn’t procrastinated on my Marvel Legends custom, I could’ve been Interwuzzle famous!” (I had prioritized Falcon because I couldn’t stand seeing that much gray plastic. I threw a lot of red paint on him in a frenzy, but he still doesn’t have enough white to resemble a Coca-Cola mascot yet.) BP is even more likely to be mistaken for British Petroleum now that he’s decked out in black gold! So now that I’ve gone to the trouble of desecrating this rare figure, Hasbro will surely produce an official version for its 2018 movie toyline.
There’s another secret exclusive Wonder Woman movie figure! This time it’s an Amazon exclusive Menalippe with flaming swords for Ares (as opposed to his standard red hot sword). Wow, she was not on my radar for additional characters to be plasticized since I’d promptly forgotten this Themysciran priestess was going to be in the movie after seeing her in one promo still. Her skintone looks sallow as if she’s undead, but I have no idea if that’s a legitimutant movie spoiler or just a weird production choice by Mattel.
I don’t have any breaking TMNT toys news to impart to you, but It’s been too long since last I wrote of the TMNT toon! (While it does start with T like Trudeau, T’Challa, & Themysciran, a fourth action figure item would ruin this title’s alliteration.) Now I’ll tell you all the nifty things that have occurred since with a surplus of exclamation marks!
After getting crippled by Hamato Yoshi for prioritizing vengeance over saving the entire Earth from Triceratons of doom, Oroku Saki mutated into Super Shredder. Not only does this version of Super Shredder look like zombie Shao Khan on steroids, he also doesn’t die from accidentally dropping a dock on his own head. (His armor mutated with him, so he’s still got that in common with his anticlimactic cinematic inspiration.) Following a reenactment of Gandalf & the Balrog’s descent, we got confirmation via one of the creepiest visions that Splinter killed the Rat King back in season two! Bebop & Rocksteady held paws to share invisibility! After being teased multiple times, Super Shredder even succeeds in killing Master Splinter off for good! Karai literally punched her dirtbag faux-father in is heart!
Ninjara Alopex debuted for Tiger Claw’s secret origin to maim him some more! Casey Jones got to homage the end of the best TMNT movie & upgraded to a metal version of his classic mask! At the culmination of a raid on his hidden fortress, Leonardo finally removes Shred-head’s head from his shoulders! The fourth season finale was so satisfying it could’ve been the series finale.
It wasn’t, however, as season five premiered a few weeks after. It’s now called Tales of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, so perhaps it’ll be more of an idiosyncratic anthology in its victory lap? Its minimalist opening sequence is snazzy! Nickelodeon seems to be rushing through its TMNT episodes because their underrated last movie was a box office dud, so enjoy the best adaptation while you can. Nickelodeon will be a replacing it with a new 2-D reboot called Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Season five begins with Tiger Claw summoning a dragon demon named Kavaxas to resurrect the Shredder. I groaned at the Shredder’s return so soon after his demise, but it actually plays out well. Michelangelo nicknames him Hothead, but he’s much closer to Drako or Dragon Lord personality-wise. The Foot steal a reliquary of Shredder’s heart from an obese Mafia stereotype who seems to be one midnight snack away from eating it to gain his power. Fishface (who really should’ve been named Robocarp or Fishlegs) betrays the Foot to the turtles because he’d understandably like to return to regular non-magical crime. Naturally Kavaxas betrays Tiger Claw after resurrecting Shredder (& Rahzar, who apparently died unmemorably last season) under his command because he’s voiced by Mark Hamill! The turtles have to fend off his army of ghosts (including surprise
Lo Pan Ho Chan but no Rat King) with kitbashed proton packs! (They made a point of Donatello calibrating them the Kavaxas’s magic earlier so they’re not entirely a deus ex machina.) Michelangelo saves the mortal coil by sticking the shattered medallion of Kavaxas back together with fresh bubble gum in one the greatest stupidly brilliant moments! Also Space Heroes: The Next Generation may be even better than the original!
Soon a bunch of DC shows shall return from their latest bi-monthy season breaks. Join me next week as I will probably write about most of them. In the meantime, It is my civic duty to remind you that in addition to an affable cast, Powerless has the best opening visuals & music combination! Give its credits all the Emmys!