Welcome back my friends to the Toy List that never ends. Come inside, come inside. Actually, this one is about to end right after I serve up the last five entries in my savory list of Favorites of 2015. It would hardly be a fitting send off for Club Eternia if I didn’t get in an MOTUC figure and it just so happens, that’s what’s coming next…
Masters of the Universe Classics Queen Grayskull by Mattel: Over the course of the year, I’ve had a few picks from MOTUC to land on this list. At one point, I was sure it was going to be Ninjor. Later, I thought Saurod. And every last figure from the 200x Sub was worthy of consideration. As it turned out this winged lady swooped in and grabbed the brass ring just before the buzzer sounded. I can’t put my finger on exactly what makes this figure sing for me, but it’s probably the striking outfit and the way they did the wings. I loved The Sorceress’ character design in the MYP cartoon and this figure captures it brilliantly. As I’m sure I said in the feature, this is a figure that I’d be happy to stand on my shelf even if I wasn’t collecting Masters Classics at all. I also thought it a very sly way to give Matty a particular nod. During it’s run, I can’t think of another action figure line that produced so many female figures and I respect that.
Transformers Unite Wars Superion by Takara: Oh, don’t look at me like that. Yesterday we had a Masterpiece Transformer and a Third-Party Convertobot. This slot is taken by something more mainstream and is in keeping with the spirit of my completely arbitrary rules. And while I did get these in the one-shot giftset and would be totally within my rights to include all the figures here, I’m actually mainly giving the nod to the combined form of Superion himself. And yes, I realize that I picked Superion over Titan Class Devastator. It was a close call, believe me. I wanted to go with Devy just because it’s such a friggin miracle that we got something like that, but this was a case of size doesn’t matter and I think Superion just impressed me more as the overall best combiner that Hasbro has yet to deliver. While I went with the Takara version, I’d like to think Hasbro’s would have landed on this list too, had I decided to go that route.
Star Wars Black Kylo Ren by Hasbro: It was a spotty year for Star Wars Black. The line has produced mostly average figures and very little that we haven’t seen (or couldn’t have been) done just as well or better in the 3 3/4-inch lines. If it hadn’t been for The Force Awakens figures, I doubt anything would have been considered for this list, but two stood out: The First Order Stormtrooper and Kylo Ren and to be honest, I went with Ren mainly because of his garment. The soft goods on this figure are absolutely fantastic and could never have been pulled off as well in the smaller scale. And that right there to me should be the whole reason for this line. What’s more, I had him on my desk for a long time and kept picking him up and playing with him long after many figures were relegated to the display shelves.
DC Comics: Zatanna Bishoujo Statue by Kotobukiya: If you honestly thought there was a chance in hell that a Bishoujo Statue wasn’t going to land somewhere on this list, then you don’t know me very well. I added quite a few of Koto’s Bishoujo Statues to my collection in 2015 and every one of them was excellent. I tried not to overthink this one and just surveyed my 2015 acquisitions and went with my heart. In the end, the battle for this slot came down to an old fashioned DC vs Marvel slug-fest with Wasp in one corner and Zatanna in the other. Both statues are adorable, and both capture the character of their subject perfectly. I tipped the scales in favor of Zatanna only because of the enormous amount of extra work that went into her sculpt, but really, both of these ladies are winners.
Terminator 2: Ultimate T-800 by NECA: The fine folks at NECA have been doing some amazing stuff lately and I’ve added many of their figures to my shelves in 2015. This relatively new “Ultimate” series of figures has quickly become a new favorite of mine and while it casts a wide net over both horror and action genres, I’ve been grabbing up every one they release. When I featured the T-800 from T2: Judgement Day, I knew right then and there that this figure was probably going to wind up on this list and here we are a couple months later and that sentiment hasn’t changed. Great packaging, beautiful sculpt, multiple portraits, tons of great weapons, and a ridiculously low price point of around twenty-one bucks. This figure is simply fantastic work and a superb value.
Deadpool Sixth-Scale Figure by Sideshow: With their Sixth-Scale GI JOE line dead, I haven’t picked up a whole lot of Sideshow figures this year, but one that I did certainly earned a spot on this list. The early shots of Sideshow’s Merc With A Mouth impressed me so much that I pre-ordered him the day he went up, despite the crazy Hot Toys-caliber price tag. A full year later and I was grinning ear to ear as I set him on my shelf amidst my Marvel Hot Toys figures. No buyer’s remorse here. With a great outfit, solid weapons, and some fun accessories, this figure hit all the right points. I’m not even mad that Hot Toys will likely be revealing their movie-based version of the character any month now. I’m not ruling out double-dipping, but I honestly think I’m going to be content with Sideshow’s version representing ‘Pool in my collection.
And that’s all the good stuff. But before calling it a day, I wanted to give an honorable shout out to Hasbro’s Marvel Legends.
Yeah, I had a little spot of bad luck with Legends this year that reserved them a spot on my naughty list. SPOILERS!!! But, I was actually surprised after compiling this list of Favorites that no single Marvel Legends figure made the cut. The truth is that I thought 2015 was a wonderful year for the line. Hasbro delivered a wide array of characters and very few figures disappointed. That having been said, there just wasn’t a single figure that stood up and screamed, “I’m worthy of your list!” Of course, keep in mind, that I’ve yet to get to the Hulkbuster Build-A-Figure, and he will likely be an early contender for the 2016 list.
Alright, enough with the kittens and rainbows. Come on back tomorrow with your hip boots and a shovel and we’ll start digging through the shit…