Saturday, June 30, 2012

Lego Monster Fighters Swamp Creature!

Okay, I fought and I fought against buying any of the new Lego Monster Hunter sets, but great balls of hellfire, these sets are probably the awesomest Lego sets ever created.

I spent about 20 minutes looking at each set at Target the other day, and came so close to just pulling the trigger and buying every darn one of them, but cooler heads prevailed and I opted to just whet my whistle with one little set. But in little packages come amazing Lego minifigures and as soon as I laid eyes on that adorable little swamp creature, I had to have it.

I actually really love Lego sets, especially these little ones that I can put together and fiddle around with while on my lunch break or something. There's just something about a brand new little pile of bricks and parts that get's my heart pumping.

I won't go into the set too much. I mean, it's cool and all. I dig the swamp boat thingy and the gun-totin' greaser dude is pretty rad, but these are the parts that will probably just end up in my small lego tub never to be pulled out again.

No, the real reason for buying this set is for this glorious green ghoul right here...

Jeezey petes! Look at those awesome bulgy eyeballs and those needle-like teeth! The headpiece alone is like nothing I have ever seen on a Lego figure.

One of the other pleasant surprises with this set was this little green frog piece. Totes adorbs...

So, now I have a Gillman for my Lego monster menagerie, and he just fit's in perfectly...

Again, just writing about this series is giving me the itch to go get more, but my toy-allowance needs to be reserved for the upcoming San Diego Comic Con. But I can't stop thinking about that Vampire jalopy or that Ghost Train set.

Anyway, time will tell if I give in or not. But I'll try and stay strong.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Top Five Friday! My Top Five Favorite General Lee Knock-Offs and Wannabe Toys

I've loved the Dukes of Hazzard ever since the very first episode premiered when I was in 1st grade. As a kid, I would manage to amass quite a respectable collection of Dukes toys and whatnot (backpacks, lunch boxes, etc.) but one of the toys that sticks out in my memory the most from back then is a toy that I never actually even owned. It was a toy General Lee knock-off that my cousin had. I distinctly recall playing "cars" out in my backyard when they were visiting (we had a small "garden" that was basically a patch of dirt that my folks let me make roads and ramps and stuff for my bigger plastic cars to drive around on), when he busted out his cherished General Lee toy car from his backpack.

First off, I was hella annoyed because we already had a General Lee, my beloved Mego version, complete with Bo and Luke action figures sitting inside. But my cousin was determined to drive his General Lee around, too, and I eventually gave in. It took me about 3.8 seconds to note that his General Lee didn't look quite right. For one thing, it was some sort of stumpy hatchback, and for another, the number on the side was 10, not 01.

I pointed this out to him but he wasn't buying it. I tried to compare my car to his, showing him the differences, but he wasn't phased. That's when it hit me; I wanted his toy car. I don't know what it was that fascinated me so deeply about this not-quite-General-Lee. All I know is that I wanted it. But no matter what I offered up for trade (and to be fair, I didn't really offer up anything amazing), my cousin wouldn't budge. Oh well.

I would later learn that it was actually a rehashed toy Ford Pinto, molded in orange with a couple of cheap stickers slapped on by a low-end toy company from the 1970s known as Gay Toys (yes, that was their name). I've since seen it pop up on eBay a few times, but have always gotten outbid. It seems that I wasn't the only one who caught a glimpse of this elusive General Lee knock-off and is still trying to aquire it.

But even though I never got my hands on the Gay Toys version, I have collected a pretty solid selection of other General Lee knock-offs and wannabes, and I thought I'd show off my top five favorites right here. So, without further ado...

 1. The 07 Rebel

This is one, much like the aforementioned Gay Toys version, that was probably quickly produced out of existing molds, simply re-cast in orange with a few stickers added. These kinds of toys were often found is cheaper toy departments such as the ones found in drug or grocery stores or perhaps Woolworth. I love how the makers skirt right up to the line of copyright infringement yet feel that they are protected legally if they just change the number on the doors to 07 or whatever. And as long as the flag on the top doesn't actually say General Lee down the sides, they're all good. in fact, this car, like the rest on this list, isn't even a '69 Dodge Charger, but has a very Chevy Nova vibe to it.

2. The Orange Power 09

This one is actually my newest eBay score and it happens to be one that I've never seen before. The copyright info on the bottom says it's made by Fleetwood Toys and give a date of 1978, which, since the show didn't even premiere until 1979, I'm guess is an artifact from the original molding of whatever this car was meant to be in the first place. Again, no 01, but an 09 instead and the Orange Power sticker just kills me. This toy has the added feature of being a friction toy, meaning that you give it a few swipes along the carpet to get the wheels going and then set it down and watch it go.

3. Matchbox's Revin' Rebel

By the time Dukes of Hazzard was in its second season, it was a massive hit and everybody and their brother was trying to cash in on the sudden popularity of orange muscle cars with some formation of stars and bars on it. Even respectable companies like Matchbox got in on the action with their repainted Dodge Challenger. Surprisingly, this car was a little hard to find for a decent price. Those Matchbox collectors don't screw around and they keep their values of vintage cars pretty high. Luckily, I scored this one at a toy show for more than I would normally pay for a Matchbox car, but I needed it for the Dukes shelf, so what are you gonna do?

4. The Dixie Challenger

And if Matchbox wasn't immune to Dukes Fever, you know that Hot Wheels wasn't either. Hot Wheels put out their very own General Lee wannabe in the form of this Dodge Challenger (I guess they all figured that Challenger sounded enough like Charger) sporting the rebel flag on top. They, like Matchbox, opted to muster some self-respect and choose to go without a number on the doors.

5. The Midget Toy Mess

This one probably has to be the cheapest, most broke-down knock-off General lee in my collection. Midget Toy put out a ton of cheaply produced, one-color toy cars back int he day, very much along the same lines as the Tootsie Toys cars you would find in cheaper five and dimes. This was another eBay find and a version i had never seen before. I've managed to find one more version of this car since, and that one is still in the package labelled "The Dixie Chargers" and came with and equally cheap white Jeep and police car. The funny thing is that the one still in the package has a small, black 09 on the doors. And yes, it's hard to tell in the pic below, but this monstrosity does have wheels, they're just that tiny and crappy.

Honorable Mention: The Buddy L "Rebel"

This one would have officially made the list, but the other entries one out by at least trying to look somewhat like a Dodge Charger. But Buddy L's foray into General Lee knock-offs was made out of a mold of some sort of Z28 or whatever this is. This bad boy originally came in a set of four different orange vehicles with rebel flags on them (a couple of trucks and a van or something), so it's pretty clear that they weren't messing around when it came time for them to cash in on a hot new TV show. Anyway, sorry orange Z28, you almost made it.

So that's it for this week's list! Hope you all enjoyed it, and be sure to keep your eyes peeled for next week's list, as well as that old Roscoe waitin' to catch you speedin' by the Boar's Nest. Y'all come back now.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Book Review: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

I don't do a whole ton of book reviews, but the book I just finished reading was so unbelievable, so imaginative, so original and so seemingly ripped from the very corner of my heart that contains everything geeky and fantastic that I have ever loved, that I just had to tell you all about it.

Now that I think about it, this isn't really a review so much as it is a love letter.

Ready Player One is the kind of story every self-professed geek has always wanted to read, or maybe even write themselves, but more probably wanted to live.

Here's my quickie, spoiler free run-down of the story: About 40 or so years in the future, the planet is ravaged by ecological disasters and the human population is massively over-crowded, losing energy resources fast and every system we have ever counted on is on the verge of collapse. But that really doesn't matter because most people live their lives virtually in the Oasis, sort of a mix between Second Life, Facebook, Amazon, Phoenix University and every MMO ever created all rolled into one. In fact, it's such a massive online environment that it basically replaces the internet as we know it now. People of all walks of life practically live every waking moment in the Oasis through the use of virtual reality visors, special interactive gloves and other forms of immersive equipment. The Oasis is where you can literally go to school, go to work, fight Orcs, become a Jedi, buy your groceries or live out any other fantasy your little heart could want.

When the creator of Oasis kicks the bucket (imagine a combined Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Benjamin Franklin and Sheldon from Big Bang Theory), he's one of the last gazillionaires on a planet full of poor, starving saps. The kicker is that he has no heirs, so, being the creator of the world largest online game/world and a lover of classic games from his teen years in the '80s, he hides an Easter Egg somewhere in the vastness of the Oasis. This Easter Egg can only be found by finding three keys that open three gates that will all test you before allowing you to move on. And every clue that leads you to each key and each gate is hidden within some form of geeky 1980s pop culture, be it video games, roleplaying games, TV sitcoms, movies, Japanese animation, comic books, pop music or what-have-you.

Know your '80s pop culture well enough, then you can solve the clues, find the keys, find the gates, beat the tests and possibly find the Easter Egg, which will win you all of the inventor's vast fortune.

The story is told from the point of view of one of these young egg hunters (called "Gunters" for short), but not just any Gunter. No, this chap is the very one who finds the first key after five years of people trying since the creator's death, instantly making him a world-wide living legend, if he can keep himself alive, that is.

You see, he's not the only Gunter, they are legion, and fiercely competative to a dangerous degree. And to make matters worse, there's a  huge army of hired faceless boot-boy Gunters sent out into the Oasis by a massive corporate monster that plans to find the Easter Egg and use the fortune that comes with it to take over the Oasis and turn it into a money-making corporate wasteland for only the few who can afford it.

This is just the first couple of chapters.

After that it's a non-stop ride full of classic videogame trivia, Dungeons & Dragons monsters come to life, battling giant Japanese robots, Firefly-class spaceships, Deloreans, anti-gravity night-clubs, adorable geek girls and... wait... I probably shouldn't say any more.

The characters are rich and likable, the evil doers are sinister and worthy of the reader's ire. The plot is ingenious, the pace is heart-pounding.

My biggest regret is that this book isn't already the first in a trilogy. Ready Player One is the kind of book that makes whatever unfortunate book I pick up next suck by default, because nothing compares to this story.

My fellow geeks, this is our Catcher in the Rye. This is our Fahrenheit 451. This is our 1984.

You know what. Screw it. I'm going to read it again. Later.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

League of Extraordinary Bloggers Weekly Theme: Patriotic Pop Culture

This week's topic: Patriotic pop culture. What movie, TV show, comic book, etc. makes you want to stand up and salute Old Glory?

I get the feeling that a lot of fellow league members are going to pick this one, but when I think back on the particular corner of pop culture that got my true-blue American blood pumping, there is no other toy line, cartoon and comic book more capable of stoking the fires of patriotism in me than G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero!

I mean, they come right out and say it in the subtitle.

I won't go into my personal discovery of G.I. Joe, because I chronicled the whole tale HERE.

But I will say that it was the very first wave of toys that sparked my love for the license...

Later, I would discover the cartoon and further deepen my obsession...

And, of course, the highly popular comic book was often jam-packed with so much patriotic fervor, that I would often have to suppress the urge to snap to attention and salute the stars and stripes themselves in honor of the the brave forces of G.I. Joe and their ceaseless battle against world-wide terror.

My mom, a former late '60s protestor, often shook her head at my obsession with the olive-green clad paramilitary fighting force, but never went so far as to forbid the toys. But I'd be lying if I said that her concerns were in vain, because thanks to my life-long love for G.I. Joe toys, comics and cartoons, I did toy with the idea of going into the military after high school. I never did, though, and now I know myself well enough to realize that was for the best.

Later on, I would out-grow G.I. Joe right around the time that the toys were starting to get a bit less realistic and military-ish and more about fighting space monsters in neon camouflage. Once, in my early 20's, I stopped to check out the current Joe toys on the shelves that I hadn't looked at in years and almost busted out laughing, they were so absurd.

Later, I would dive right back in to the the franchise with the release of the 25th anniversary figures, the first G.I Joe motion picture (sue me, I liked it) and the new series of comics from IDW. Heck, even the Renegades animated series was pretty badass!

Anyway, when I think of rocket's red glare and bombs bursting in air, I know that G.I. Joe is out there, giving Cobra a full metal jacket full of hell and never letting up.

Yooooooooooooooo JOE!

Please see the complete list of posts from the Extraordinary League of Bloggers and show their blogs some love. Thanks!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Okay, I Finally Bought Some Series 7 Lego Minifigs!

Even though I have almost complete sets of series 1 through 6 of the highly addicting blind-bag Lego minifigures, I found myself resisting the urge to pick up any of the newest series 7 figures. I'm not exactly sure why. Perhaps I'm getting a little sick of the whole blind-bag thing. There's nothing like buying a handful of figures and getting 4 Scottish warriors. That actually happened. I felt so cheated.

But, the collector in me can only resist for so long, so I picked up a few. Just thought I'd share what I've got so far...

CRAP! Not one daredevil stunt driver! Oh well, I'll probably try again. Because the collector in me is a compulsive beast.

Also, anyone need a Bunny Guy? I got two. :)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Da na na na na na na na BAT CHUCKS!

This is a glorious day in the Lair of the Dork Horde, my friends. For today (well, this past Friday) I received in the mail my very own pair of one-of-a-kind Batman Converse Chuck Taylor tennis shoes designed by yours truly.

Converse has teamed up with DC comics and have put together a wicked collection of shoes with killer vintage-style DC Comics graphics (from the DC Originals style guide, the very one we're using at Mixo for our upcoming papercraft figures). But the coolest part is that they put together a template thingy for you to design your own DC Comics Chucks! I wasted no time designing my own pair (actually, I designed a few, but these are my favorites), and saving them to my account to hopefully order one day.

Well, that  day came sooner than I thought when a very good friend of my wife's (and mine too, of course) sent me a gift certificate for the Converse website (after my wife showed her the shoes I designed) as a thanks for designing her wedding invitations. BAM! Those shoes were ordered faster than Bat-a-rang knocking a gun out of thug's hand!

And here they are...

Now, I could have gone crazy on the design, but I decided to make them as I would imagine that Batman would have designed them. More like a piece of the Bat-uniform, so to speak. I also went with the classic black and gray with yellow trim look from the animated series. I almost went like 1970's Dick Giordano style with the blue and gray, but thought this would look better.

I also wanted the shoes to still look like good old fashion Chuck Taylors (one of my all-time favorite shoes since 7th grade, when I first started skateboarding). I could have changed the coloring on the sides and tops of the rubber soles, but decided to keep them pure. I thought that the black metal eyelets in the gray sides looked sweet with the yellow laces, and the yellow stripe down the back is supposed to mimic the look of his belt.

I also wanted the inside tongue to be black, to represent his cape.

Heck, even the box they came is is sweet! The matte black box with the vintage DC graphics is a keeper. I'll have to put this on a shelf somewhere and keep trading cards in it or something. Far too cool to throw away.

Converse thought of everything, including carrying over the box graphics to the hangtag, which I wasted no time in adding to my hangtag collection (yes, I have a hangtag collection).

So there they are, gang. My crime-fighting sneakers. I'll probably only wear these on super special occasions, like comic book conventions and nighttime rooftop patrols.

You can make your very own super-sneakers by going to and clicking the "create" button. In fact, I strongly advise you to do this. The shoes are a bit pricey ($75.00 plus tax and shipping), but if you think about it, they're a one-of-a-kind pair of bad ass sneaks that no one else in the world will have but you. It's hard to put a price on that.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Count Chocula Vinyl Figures: The Good, The Bad and the Part of a Nutritious Breakfast

I've always loved the General Mills Monster Cereals, but I've never been sure which I love more, the actual cereals, or just the characters (specifically Count Chocula, Frakenberry and Boo Berry). I'm gonna go with the latter, since I'm a little bit of a product mascot nut.

And if I was going to pick a favorite from the General Mills selection of monster mascots, I'd go with Count Chocula.

It was this love for the chocolatey vampire that had me jumping for joy back when I found this rare Count Chocula vinyl figure at a toy show in a bin marked "This bin $3" a couple of years ago...

Sadly, when I took this guy to work the following Monday to show my boss (a major player in the world of product mascot collecting), he promptly crushed my dreams by informing me that this particular piece was nothing but a shoddy knock-off. I was bummed to say the least.

But the collecting gods do tend to shine upon and make things right again from time to time and over two years later, I would finally get to see an original vintage Count Chocula vinyl when Brian from Cool & Collected sent along his toybox o' plenty (yes, I'm still working my way through all of that toy goodness).

Seen side by side, the differences between the knock-off (on the left) and the original are painfully obvious. The colors and size are completely different and even the materials used show a stark contrast, with the knock-off being a harder plastic and the original being made of actual vinyl.

There's a weird part of me that loves comparing knock-offs to their original counterparts. It makes me feel like some sort of relic-hunter traveling the world uncovering fakes and forgeries. Of course, a plastic Count Chocula doll isn't exactly like a fake Mona Lisa or anything. Well, maybe it is a little bit. To me, at least.

And as a conscientious collector, I will be passing this beauty on to another fellow collector who has been looking for one for quite some time, and thus continuing the circle of good toy karma started by Brian, passed through me and sent on to others in our strange little field. But I will forever treasure the day that I got to examine the differences between a nefariously deceiving example pure balderdash and a shining real McCoy, brimming with verisimilitude and gleaming like a master painting.

To me, at least.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Top 5 Friday: Trading Cards from the '80s

What kid growing up in the '80s didn't collect trading cards? Even if you weren't an avid collector, you still ended up with a few packs worth of cards every now and then. In my school and neighborhood, trading cards were practically legal tender in our kid world. If one kid had a pack of Pop Tarts, you could get one of those Pop Tarts from him for 4 Superman cards. I once managed to get a whole shoebox of Return of the Jedi figures in exchange for a healthy stack of baseball cards. And we even once coaxed another kid into eating an earthworm for a Mean Joe Green card. I know, we were horrible.

Anyway, I was a full-blown trading card addict as a kid, amassing several boxes full of cards based on movies, cartoons and (occasionally) sports. So I thought it would be fun to list my top 5 favorite trading cards series that I was pretty much always willing to drop some lawn-mowing money on.

Most of these aren't going to be shocking to any of you, but here they are nonetheless.

1. Empire Strikes Back

Now, most of you are probably wondering why I didn't list the Star Wars series of cards, and I did own a metric crap-ton of those, but it was the ESB cards that saw my most fevered bout of collecting mania, and also represented my very first foray into trying to collect every single card in the series, which I eventually managed to do. Also, the ESB cards were just gorgeous, with their frames designed to look like brushed metal and their legendary "letter" cards.
2. Raiders of the Lost Ark

This is another card series that I battled and won in my efforts to complete the series. Sadly, I think I was about the only kid in my neighborhood that was crazy about these cards, so I never really had anyone to trade with. So I was on my own, and I bet if I had kept track, I probably single-handedly bought the entire box of these wax packs down at Bailey's Pharmacy all from bottle and can return money.
3. E.T.

At the other end of the spectrum to the lack of interest in the Raiders cards in my neighborhood and school, pretty much every kid I knew was crazy for E.T. cards. One of the best things about these cards is that we often found those big, long packs of E.T. cards, where you got like 30 cards or something, which some math-minded kid in our school figured out made the cards cheaper if bought that way, and of course, helped you complete your collection faster.

4. Garbage Pail Kids

These cards represent the trading cards that I probably collected for the longest period of time. These were an absolute phenomenon in middle school and every kid I knew collected them. I remember being sneered at by the cooler kids in 7th grade while we nerds huddled around our 3-ring binders packed full of Garbage Pail Kids cards (technically stickers, but you only stuck your doubles on stuff, and only then if they weren't good trade fodder). I would collect these cards all through 7th, 8th and even into 9th grade. Later, in my 20s, I would start to hunt down the other cards I missed in my teen years and thanks to their resurgence, I even bought a few packs recently. My love for these cards will probably never end.
5. Topps Baseball Cards

I know, I know, I wasn't exactly the biggest sports lover as a kid, but for some reason, especially through my Little League years, it seemed like an American rite of passage to collect baseball cards. Growing up in Michigan, me and my friends were often scrambling to be the first to collect every one of the Detroit Tigers team cards and that reached a fever pitch in '84 when the Tigers beat the Padres in the World Series.

The reason I specifically chose Topps brand baseball cards is because, for some reason, when we were kids, we all got it in our heads that only jerks and idiots collected Fleer. Don't ask me why. I have no idea where that came from.

Thanks for checking out my list. Another Top 5 will hit the blog next Friday! See you there

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

League of Extraordinary Bloggers Weekly Theme: Kurt Russell

This week's topic: Kurt Russell.

Yep. That's it. Just Kurt Russell. And since we had a whole lot of leeway with this week's topic, I decided to do what I do best, and make little drawings of Kurt Russell in some of my personally favorite roles of his, all done on my crappy little Lite Brite wannabe iPhone app. So, enjoy my Lite Brite Brutes edition of The Many Faces of Kurt Russell.

Please see the complete list of posts from the Extraordinary League of Bloggers and show their blogs some love. Thanks!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tales from the 25¢ Bin: Mexican Comics Part II

Some of you may remember a while back when I had posted a little write up on a comic from Mexico that I found in the almighty 25¢ bin called Porky y sus Amigos. Well, it just so happens that I had found two Mexican comic books that day and thanks to the efforts of the blogging gods who guided me to look into a folder where I had placed the pics I took a while back and then promptly forgot about. Anyway, I thought I'd share.

This issue steers us away from the Looney Tunes characters in my previous post and takes a look at the classic characters of Disney. Cuentos de Walt Disney (Walt Disney Stories) looks a whole lot like those classic Whitman and Gladstone comics we could get back in the day which often featured reprints of classic Disney comics, usually with a new, somewhat lame cover.

I mean, look at this one below. Oh, haw haw haw. He's a got as moose blowing a horn! And what's with the eagle's head on the tree stump? It looks like it may be a logo or soemthing, but I'm not sure. Maybe it's a hidden symbol from the artist. I also have to point out that it took me a second to realize that the lump protruding from the side of the tent is more likely the third cousin's head, and not, as I originally thought, the second sleepy cousin's butt. But now that I look at it again, taken out of context... yikes.

May favorite part of these comics are the ads. What the heck could this add be for? Bongo drums?

I love the old "Tutsi" ads. Mostly I just love how they spell "Tutsi". I wonder if when Dustin Hoffman's gender-bending 1982 major motion picture came out in Mexico, was it called "Tutsi"?

Here we see Donald Duck being a litterbug. I'm not really sure what the text says, but it's probably something about not being a litterbug.

The comics themselves are pretty standard fare. Huey, Dewey and Louie having adventures...

Quasi-racist stereotypes of Native Americans...

And clear evidence that Goofy and Clarabelle Cow once had a thing going on...

I know it sounds like I'm making fun of this comic or the country it came from, but I swear I'm not. In truth, I love these comics, and truly love taking a look at a little slice of comic book culture from another land. It makes me realize that we really aren't too different. We all grew up loving the same characters and curling up wherever we could with a stack of comics about them.

If I've learned anything about the country of Mexico through this very small look at their pop culture, it's that they are far more accepting of an inter-species relationship between a female cow and whatever Goofy is. And I am now wiser for it.

Monday, June 18, 2012

G.I. Joe Retaliation Snake Eyes & Storm Shadow!

I don't know what it is about me, but I just can't pass up a new Snake Eyes or Storm Shadow figure. In fact even after my last Snake Eyes purchase turned out to be a bit disappointing, I vowed not to buy any more modern G.I. Joe figures, but after seeing these in the store on the pegs, and worrying that they would be hard to find since the movie got pushed back to next year (which I'm still pissed about), I had to snatch them up. Now I feel silly, because they're everywhere. But a couple of weeks ago, the G.I. Joe pegs went bare in my area and the rumor went around that all the Joe toys were getting pulled from shelves due the change in the movie's release. So I guess I got caught up in gotta-have-it fever and thought that the two I spotted at a TRU were the only ones I was ever going to find until next year. Now, everywhere.

Oh well. I got my toys and that's all that counts.


I don't normally mention the packaging in not-necessarily-a-review reviews, but I do have to point out that The Rock (who I actually really like as an actor) looks pretty damn silly on the top of these card backs. I can't tell if he's yelling or trying not to yawn during a meeting. But that's a nit-pick. It clearly didn't make me not buy the figures, and the action shots of the figures on the back are dope.

I consider myself a bit of a Snake Eyes action figure aficionado, and I've got to say that this one absolutely rocks. The sculpt is killer (love that stitching in his uniform), the articulation is excellent (ankle rocker joints!) and they really nailed the paint with the super dark gray with black points on his shoulders, knees and visor.

The Storm Shadow I'm a little less than impressed with. I don't dig the mask. I wish it looked more like a classic ninja mask instead of some sort of white cotton ski mask. And the the way his pants sort of poof out around the thighs makes him look like he's wearing... well... stupid pants.

Oh snap! It's about to be on!

I also have to say that, even though I know these toys are mainly made for kids to play with (no, it's true), I couldn't give a gently hovering fart about the rest of the flotsam and jetsam that comes with these figures. All this grappling hook nonsense is just a pile of wasted plastic to me. I literally took this picture and then through everything seen here into a trashcan.

Again, I know these are for kids, and I guess that kids (and probably some collectors) dig these kinds of accessories, but I can't help but think that the plastic used in this brightly colored junk could have been better used (in regards to production costs and price point) by giving us a slew of classic ninja weapons and badass guns in proper blacks and silver.

Instead, Snake Eyes got stuck with what appears to be a dollar store knock-off Super Soaker...

Oh well. In short, I love the Snake Eyes figure all by himself, and dig the Storm Shadow enough to warrant keeping him on my desk fro a couple of weeks where I will occasionally repose them into new fighting stances about 6 times a day while on the phone with my boss.

I may go get the Target ninja 3 pack (even though it's basically re-paints) and definitely get the red ninja when I see it, but I think I'm going to pass on the Kung-fu Yawn Rock figure.

And now you know...