Welcome to Figure Friday where it sure is November. I actually did have to pause after that sentence to go downstairs and flip the page on my 2022 kittens calendar.
Presently we’re in that liminal territory between Halloween and Christmas where I’m not ready for Halloween to be over with and I certainly not ready for Christmas to begin. A couple of weeks ago I had popped into Target (more on that below) and was chilled to see the Halloween section of the store rapidly losing ground to Christmas decorations. It’s probably well-worn ground for most columnists that complain about Christmas getting “earlier and earlier every year” but there is a kernel of truth to it.
I worked retail jobs right up until I sold out, maaannnnn and went corporate in my early twenties. There should be an asterisk next to “worked” in the preceding sentence since each store I was employed at came with copious amount of downtime even during the holiday season. Regardless, working in a mall in the run up to Christmas was enough to crater my festive spirit. The weather was terrible, I was always forced to park on the outskirts of mall property to free up spaces for the shoppers, and people were just generally screaming, miserable assholes during November and December.
So, please, if you’re going to be doing any in-person shopping and not just throwing money at the Great Satan Amazon…try and be nice to the employees. They want to be there even less than you do.
The Batman sure was a movie that came out in…2022?!
Maybe it’s due to the film being delayed substantially due to Covid or that it landed in theaters way back in March, but it feels like a distant memory at this point. I both saw AND liked The Batman and I even watched it again at home but I’m hard-pressed to speak enthusiastically or knowledgeably about it right now.
Apparently, I was gassed up enough to preorder the Figuarts version of the titular caped crusader at some point several months ago and it finally arrived! Right off the bat (hey-hey) I was unsure about ordering it since a lot of the recent Figuarts releases have been heavily criticized online. I took that criticism with a road salt-sized grain of salt because it’s the internet and it’s positively fueled by criticism.
A lot of the complaints I read were that the figures legs were “too skinny” which is a very weirdly specific complaint. Last time I checked, Robert Pattinson wasn’t rocking twin tree trunks in the legs of his designer pants and, to me, the legs appeared to be appropriate in scale. The other complaint was, “Mafex will do it better!” which is less of a criticism and more of an expression of brand loyalty. I don’t get tearing down one brand in favor of another one, but if that’s your preference then that’s ok. Personally, I like both brands but I lean towards Figuarts for movie tie-in stuff and Mafex for comic book characters.
Now on to my take on this figure! In recent years I’ve tended to view Figuarts as either pizza or a new album by my favorite band insomuch that I’ll get at least a baseline enjoyment from one of their offerings. Figuarts has yet to disappoint me with one of their offerings much like Little Caesars will stop me from being hungry.
For The Batman Figuarts did the best they could with the available source material. The figure has loads of articulation but some of it is hampered by the design of the bat-costume. For instance, the upper portion of the cape and collar is made of molded plastic so if you were looking for Bruce to be the “Y” in “YMCA” you’ll sadly be unable to realize your dream. The neck articulation is similarly limited by the same collar so while he can look side-to-side he’s still going to have to pull a Batman ’89 and bend back at the waist to look up. The elbows of the figure are also locked at a slight angle due to the elbow pads of the costume limiting things.
Overall it’s a pretty okay figure and I’m not experiencing any buyer’s remorse. I’m also not about to run out and order the Mafex version so I can prove which one is “better.” This figure will serve its intended purpose of looking cool on my desk and/or bookshelf.
About a month ago I engaged in the long and proud Michigander tradition of going over to Windsor, Ontario for no reason other than “it’s right there.” I also did this to prove to BBP! Editor-in-Chief Andy Burns that national borders mean nothing to me and that I could show up in Toronto at any time.
American exceptionalism aside, Canada still has all the same problems we have in the states…but at least they still have Toys ‘r’ Us. Truly, a place where a kid can be a kid even if you’re a someone in their mid-40’s and childless. While I was reveling in its glory (A store! Just for toys!) I happened upon a plentiful display of Star Wars Vintage Collection figures, something I admittedly seldom see in the U.S. of A. Regular readers will know of my soft spot for the 3.75-inch Star Wars toys so I was bowled over to see a bunch of figures I’d never seen “in the wild.”
This Boba Fett figure drew my attention because I had seen a deluxe version of it that came with accessories out the proverbial wazoo but this one was a stripped down version. I checked the price and quickly ran it through the currency converter and it was coming back around $30 USD which didn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. For reference, these figures usually top out around $13 or so and paying more than double that amount was out of the question, scarcity be damned. I elected to let sleeping Sarlaccs lie and returned home empty-handed.
A couple of weeks ago I was in Target and after I cursed the early arrival of Christmas I passed through the toy section (like it wasn’t already my primary destination) and found a whole load of these Boba Fetts all puzzlingly priced at $20. After some rudimentary googling, I discovered the figure was exclusive to Target (and probably TRU in Canada) which I guess gives them carte blanche to mark the price up.
It’s a great little figure if you’re a Fett fan or a character completist but I cannot recommend paying Target’s asking price for it. So, I’ll share a handy dandy pro-tip here if you absolutely have to have it like I did. The Target app usually has some kind of coupons or exclusive offers going and fortunately they had a 25% off one toy running that week which brought the price down to something I was willing to pay! Work smarter, not harder. Shop smart, shop S-Mart.
Until next time, happy toy hunting!