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10 - Silken Floss, Hot Toys, 2009
There are times when some company - quite often Hot Toys - produces a figure or series of figures from a new property, and I'm just not sure if I'm going to care all that much. Such was the film The Spirit, a movie I still haven't watched. And yet, I really wish I'd picked up the Silken Floss character, an excellent Nazi villain to go with the likes of Toht. While she isn't at the level of quality of the later Scarlett Johansen Black Widow figures, she's still a figure I regret passing on. Truth be told, I wish I had the Octopus as well, but I think Ms. Floss trumps him.
9 - Kyle Reese, Hot Toys, 2005
Don't worry - all ten won't be Hot Toys figures. But let's be honest, even with owning a fairly large number of their figures, I'm still going to have a few holes in the collection considering the vast number of releases.
Their Kyle Reese is not a great figure. It's a terrible figure by today's standards, and wasn't even a great figure by 2005 standards. It was passable, so it might be surprising that it's on my list. But it was also Hot Toys first figure in what was then their new "Movie Master Series", which is now 350+ figures strong. I didn't start getting large numbers of their figures until they were into the 50's, and it wasn't until around 100 that I really started getting a little crazy. I missed out on Kyle, and I want him merely for his historical importance.
8 - Mr Bean, Enterbay, 2009
See, I told you they wouldn't all be Hot Toys! In fact, there were several from Enterbay in the running, including Kato and Leon the Professional, two other figures I'll grab some day if I ever find an amazing deal. But it's the goofy, silly Mr. Bean that is the sort of offbeat and unusual figure that I like to have in my collection. At the time there was just so much coming out that he got lost in the flood, and months later I realized I'd missed my chance.
7 - Jed Gibson, Marx, 1975
Here's an oldie but a goody! As a kid, I loved the Marx Best of the West series. I cajoled my parents into buying me my fair share, but one that I wish I had was Jed Gibson, the only African American in the series. The highlight of the series was the terrific assortment of accessories, and he was a guide in the Calvary line, a personal favorite in the overall Western line up. He goes for big bucks now when you can find one that isn't broken (the hard plastic bodies have a tendency to crack and decay over time) and I've never been able to fill this hole in my collection. Some day!
BTW, the photo is courtesy of Stewart's Attic, and if you're interested in anything to do with Best of the West I highly recommend you check out their terrific website.
6 - Space Adam Apexplorers, Hot Toys/Winson Ma, 2010
This guy is probably the most unusual on my list. Generally, I don't do 'art' figures, no Dam Toys for me, and not that many customs. I prefer licensed properties, but occasionally there's something just so cool that it intrigues me - such is Space Adam from the Apexplorers series. The Apexplorers series was designed by Winson Ma and produced by Hot Toys, and this particular version combines all that is cool about gorillas with all that is cool about astronauts, making the perfect mash up. I doubt I'll ever find one at a price I can afford, since the production numbers were very, very low, but I can always dream.
5 - Snape, Medicom, 2015
I really do like my Star Ace Harry Potter Severus Snape, and I think the head sculpt gets a lot of undo criticism. But I also think that Medicom nailed the portrait with their earlier release, and it's one of the rare times where I think they were able to leave the cartoony sculpting behind. The costume and accessories aren't as nice, but the portrait is enough to sell me - and it drives me nuts that I could have got this guy pretty cheap when it was first released. This is also one of those that I will definitely get...eventually.
Photo courtesy of Sideshow Collectibles.
4 - Frankenstein Holiday Edition, Sideshow, 2000
There aren't many Sideshow figures I don't have, since the ones I wanted I tended to buy at the time. But there was one that is particularly special - their Holiday Frankenstein. Last week I picked their first Frankenstein as one of my favs, largely because of it's historical significance to the market and my collecting habits. That same year they produced a limited run of 400 Frankies done up in a festive nightgown and cap, perfect for a cold Christmas morn. I never did snag one of these, although I did end up with the Holiday Dracula they produced the following year.
Photo courtesy of Cool Toy Review.
3 - Rocketeer, Medicom, 2002
I was never a huge fan of Medicom figures. They were superior in quality to most other licensed products in the early aughts, but the scale was off, and the often caricature style portraits didn't do much for me. That means I passed them up more often than not, and occasionally that behavior bit me on the ass. The Rocketeer was one very notable example. I still wish I'd picked one up, and I have even less excuse than with Snape - they did a second release, giving me two chances to screw up! This is a character I'd really like to see someone else take a shot at, perhaps as part of a 'pulp fiction' line up.
2 - Vasquez, Hot Toys, 2006
I was a little slow getting on the Hot Toys band wagon, particularly around their licensed figures. Let's be honest - those early head sculpts left a lot to be desired. But they were tackling some characters I really liked, and the Colonial Marines were probably the best example. I ended up getting Hicks, Hudson, and Drake, but never picked up Vasquez or Apone. I kept thinking "They'll come down in price eventually". And they kept going up in price.
Photo courtesy of Sideshow Collectibles.
1 - Blade 2, Hot Toys, 2010
My biggest regret is missing out on Blade, for several reasons. I'm a big fan, particularly of the second film. The Blade series was one of those where the sequel surpassed the original, even when the original was a strong film. I've also tried to pick up a nice, wide, representative set of Marvel characters, and Blade is the only one they produced that I don't have any version. Of course, I kept thinking they'd revisit the license - hey, I can't always be right. While missing out on the 12th variation of Captain America or the 74th Iron Man doesn't feel like much of a hole in the collection, missing out on the only release of one of the best Marvel film characters is a serious gap. It's one I doubt I'll ever fill, as prices are ridiculous now, but I'm hopeful that someone at Hot Toys will eventually want to come back and upgrade him with a new release.
This was an interesting list to do, since it's not just about favorites, but about bad decisions and missed opportunities. These are grails for me (and if I get them, they stop being grails - people that called figures in their collection 'grails' don't seem to understand the concept) and hopefully I'll add at least a few of them to my collection at some point. Of course, if I have any readers that are particularly wonderful human beings that also happen to be rich...
If you're enjoying this concept of Captain Toy Picks, drop me a line and let me know!
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