Well, it is officially September and man, summer really went fast. Really quick. The month after SDCC is always kind of blah, lull time of year for me. Camp ends, all those back to school signs start appearing when we're barely out of July, the toys from the first big blockbuster of the summer sit on the pegs looking ancient. Basically, it's a depressing time of year save for the nice weather.
However, since it is right before a new season, there is some reason to rejoice as some unexpected figures surface that you didn't expect. Or you were so tapped out from July and Con Exclusives, you just forgot to even see what was going on in Junkie-town. It's ok though Junkies, everybody falls off the wagon, it's getting back on that counts. A real AFJ knows that with the highs come the lows. And August of 2015, the supposed year of the Hoverboard, was not too shabby for figures. Without any further ado, AFJ gives you August's TOP 10 HOT LIST that includes 10 & 1/2 this month because you are all super special in my eyes Junkies! I dare you to find another TOP 10 list that is disguised as a TOP 10 & 1/2 HOT LIST!!
--JK, HEAD JUNKIE
**PLEASE NOTE THAT THE PRICE NEXT TO THE FIGURE IS EITHER THE EXACT PURCHASE PRICE AS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE OR THE SPECULATIVE PRICE AFJ HAS DECIDED ON IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CURRENT PRIMARY AND SECONDARY MARKETS!**
1. KYLO REN, STAR WARS BLACK SERIES EPISODE VII ($60)
Here’s what I know: I don’t know a lot. However last night at FORCE FRIDAY which turned out to be more like FARCE FRIDAY, everyone online was after BLACK SERIES KYLO REN. A lot of people left TRU disappointed but for the last 16 hours or so he has been popping up in-stock and then out of stock on AMAZON at a regular cost as fans impatiently continue to reload their browser. Although the movie is over three months away, KYLO REN is the runaway hit character so far. When the first EPISODE VII: THE FORCE AWAKENS teaser hit, it was KYLO REN’s cool looking lightsaber that lit up the Internet and had both Jedi and Sith everywhere wanting more information on the mysterious character. Actor Adam Driver from HBO’s “GIRLS” landed the role and thanks to Wookipedia, we do know a little background on KYLO. The follower of the Dark Side (spoiler, sorry, but you
could tell) was born after the Battle of Endor or for you commoners reading this, the end of ROTJ. Upon deciding to choose the Dark Side, he became a part of the Knights of Ren taking on that name as his new surname. That awesome looking lightsaber he wields was constructed by Kylo himself including that cool looking cross guard that projects out of its sides. I keep thinking it'd be easy to burn your hand, but I’m only JBA, Jedi By Association. Kylo definitely has that awesome Dark Side look to him that is the perfect standout for the first wave of BLACK SERIES. The hood, the cloak, the mask, KYLO REN’s got it all. I’m also getting him in 3.75” form too…if I can find him!
2. S.H. FIGUARTS HARLEY QUINN ($60)
We all love Harley Quinn, but this is one special kind of Harley. This former doctor is a special all-around and is selling like hotcakes. Probably because of her hotcakes. At over 6-inches tall and what I consider to be perfect packaging (could not get a really clear shot, unfortunately), this is probably my favorite Harley to be released to date. This is the femme fatale’s first appearance in the S.H. FIGUARTS line and comes with all sorts of goodies for us Junkies to play with. First off, what would Harley be without the massive (and highly detailed) giant hammer? In addition, she has those two, almost Hellboy Samaritan-like looking guns that she’s ready to use at a moment’s notice. And if you have the S.H. Joker, you can pair Harley up with Mistah J and pose them together with their matching playing cards. To top it off, Junkies get a set of 7-interchangeable hands and a pair of interchangeable face parts. Awesome for posing and a must have for HQ fans. BUY IT HERE: http://bit.ly/1IG89fI
3. HOT TOYS VISION ($219.99)
Yes, the Hulkbuster was amazing and certainly got its due when it came to the hype. However, when you look at the film itself, AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON has stolen a character that didn’t even have a heart. It was the VISION that was the heart and soul of the mega-sequel. It is, of course, ironic that the amazing actor that plays the android, Paul Bettany (husband to Jennifer Connelly btw) was told just weeks before being offered the role of VISION that his career was done. Man, Hollywood is a tough town considering Bettany had notable roles in films like A BEAUTIFUL MIND (the imaginary friend), THE DA VINCI CODE (the crazy monk), and would you believe he has been the voice of Tony Stark’s JARVIS all of these years? That’s right, Bettany is back baby! I don’t normally put HOT TOYS/SIDESHOW on the AFJ TOP 10 but this is just an amazing piece to have on your shelf. And remember you can always do the payment plan they offer.
The VISION has a newly developed head sculpt with movie-accurate facial features and detailed skin texture. The red-violet skin tone on VISION’s face is a specially applied metallic paint. He has over 30 points of articulation, 8 pieces of interchangeable palms and of course, the ever important Mjölnir! VISION comes with a specially designed figure stand with a personalized nameplate with the movie logo. AFJ needs to go public so I can afford more of these!
4. S.H. FIGUARTS LUKE SKYWALKER EPISODE VI ($80)
There are Luke Skywalker figures and then there is an S.H. FIGUARTS Luke Skywalker figure. This new piece that is just hitting shelves is one of the best and most screen accurate looking Luke Skywalker/Mark Hamill figures that I have ever encountered. It is from the epic final battle between Luke and his father, Darth Vader in RETURN OF THE JEDI. Luke has grown from the farm boy on Tatooine into the Jedi Knight he was born to be decked out in black ready to take down the Dark Side once and for all, even if it means sacrificing his father. Already pre-sold out on most retail sites, the figure comes with an optional head, some “optional expression parts” (I think that means the teary face, but I am not sure), optional hands for both left and the right, Anakin Skywalker’s messed up head out of the Vader shell and of course Luke’s lightsaber. Already fetching up to $80 on the secondary market and really the last scene that will lead us into December’s Episode VII, this is a Skywalker that has to make your shelf even when it gets up to $100…and it will.
5. MARVEL LEGENDS CHAMELEON ($35)
Leave it to a character named THE CHAMELEON to be the hot MARVEL LEGEND in the new BAF RHINO wave. I gave it a great review last week as my favorite of this new awesome wave and it is about time that THE CHAMELEON got the 6-inch LEGENDS treatment. Not only does the character that was introduced in the very first AMAZING SPIDER-MAN issue back in March of ’63 look amazing, but he comes with two additional heads and three pistols to make other characters like HAMMERHEAD and J. JONAH JAMESON. Did some Junkies say awesome? It has reached as high as $40 but it is a good time to get it now if you are serious about putting your BAF RHINO together. Plus I think he and his half-brother, KRAVEN THE HUNTER, are the coolest in this new wave. A definite pick up.
6. SDCC ’66 BATGIRL TRU EXCLUSIVE ($45)
It is always sad to lose an icon but just after SDCC this year when the ’66 BATGIRL figure from the live-action BATMAN show finally premiered, we lost actress Yvonne Craig who portrayed the iconic crime fighter. Craig passed away at age 78 on August 17th just two weeks ago. Its a shame but death usually means that any memorabilia, especially a figure, go up in price. And since the brand new figure has barely been out there five weeks along with the new Batman & Robin 3-pack, Ms. Craig probably is smiling somewhere up there in the great Bat Signal in the sky. She will be missed by AFJ. Did I mention it is a really awesome retro-looking figure that captures Craig’s groovy 60’s sex appeal?
7. THE ROCKETEER LEGACY COLLECTION (6-INCH) FUNKO ($20)
I have been waiting since 1991 for a ROCKETEER action figure worthy of Joe Johnston’s most underrated film. We reviewed the figure a few weeks back and now is a perfect time to get Cliff Secord, aka THE ROCKETEER. The flyboy that accidentally becomes a hero in pre-World War II Los Angeles never really found its audience at the box office, but it continues to live on in comic books and now, finally, action figures! This new 6-inch figure is from the FUNKO LEGACY COLLECTION has all the bells and whistles including the iconic helmet that Peevy fashioned and awesome looking Howard Hughes designed rocket pack that will make you feel like a bat out of hell with it strapped to your back. OK not yet for us but you now have this awesome figure to tide you over at just $20! ORDER HERE: http://bit.ly/1ILtEM5
8. MARVEL SELECT ZOMBIE SABRETOOTH ($23)
The zombie craze in America is still on and Marvel Select has decided to churn out another figure of the undead. The Select zombie figures from a few years ago have gone way up in price making this a prudent move on Diamond’s part. However, I am yet to see the new ZOMBIE SABRETOOTH in my local comic shop or anywhere else for that matter. Have no fear, though, you will only have to shell out just over $20 plus shipping to nab one of your own. This ZOMBIE SABRETOOTH is one cool looking figure too standing at almost 8-inches tall and it comes with a base of a damaged heap of the Green Goblin’s famous glider! Awesome all around for a price you can’t beat. To pick one up, just click here: http://bit.ly/1ECrpQr
9. HAGRID POP! VINYL ($20)
Everyone’s favorite groundskeeper of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft & Wizardry is finally in POP Vinyl form. And not just regular size. The lovable lug stands at six inches towering over the rest of the HARRY POTTER gang. HAGRID has been selling steadily at my most frequented online retailers but has been also been selling out quite a bit. Normally it goes for just $13.99 but if you need him fast, you may have to pay upwards of $20 on the secondary market. However, give this link a shot to get him at a cheaper price as long as you solemnly swear you are up to no good! ORDER HERE: http://bit.ly/1EAFf5p
10. DC MULTIVERSE BATMAN ’66 & DEATHSTROKE ($11.99 apiece)
I did a piece on the DC MULTIVERSE line a few weeks ago and I am still in mourning over what was my favorite DC line of figures. But life and figure lines go on right? These two are my favorite from the final line that is just hitting retail stores now but has been online for a few weeks. I advise getting them now before word gets out to the casual collector that these figures are in fact part of the last wave of the DC MULTIVERSE, unfortunately. BATMAN ’66 is outfitted in an updated suit from the Live Action Batman ’66 TV show and every detail is perfect. they even managed to pencil in those white eyebrows on his cowl! I wish they made this updated suit in 6-inch form. As far as DEATHSTROKE goes, he has been getting a lot of exposure in 2015 and although he only stands at close to 4-inches, this is one of the most impressive iterations of the master assassin I have seen. He’s got all the bells and whistles and is a really awesome addition to your smaller scale collection of figures. To order both figures on the cheap, just click these two links: DEATHSTROKE http://bit.ly/1Q9P0Jf & BATMAN ’66 http://bit.ly/1fWaImR
10 & 1/2. MINI-SHAKESPEARE BUST BATMAN LIVE ACTION TV SHOW
If you grew up on reruns of the BATMAN ’66 Live Action TV show like me, the Shakespeare bust that Bruce Wayne & Dick Grayson used to open the secret wall that led them to the Batcave was the coolest thing in the world. Master craftsman have made real-life working replicas of this that I have seen on eBay go for hundreds of dollars but for just seven bucks, you can get your own mini-version to keep on your desk or on your mantle as the ultimate home accessory! And yes, the head of Shakespeare goes back and there is a button there. It doesn’t open anything but there is a button and yes I pressed it anyway! A great gift that I had to include on this month’s AFJ TOP 10 list. To order from Figures Toy Co., just CLICK HERE: http://bit.ly/1ijdpRb