Friday, 23 August 2019

TFNATION 2019



For many Transformers fans based in the UK (and beyond!), TFNation is a landmark of the social calendar. The 3-day convention in August is *the* event to go to if you're at all interested in transforming robots, and is packed with panels, activities, events and all kinds. Of course there're also plenty of toys to be found!

Monday, 12 August 2019

MONTH IN REVIEW: June 2019



We're really cracking through 2019 now, aren't we? It's always around this time of year that I can't believe how fast the months are rolling by. I guess it's one of the many reasons that I enjoy putting together this regular update so much, as it allows chance for a bit of reflection. Needless to say it's been another busy time with plenty going on, so let's get right to it!

Wednesday, 12 June 2019

MONTH IN REVIEW: May 2019



How is it June already? I swear as I get older the months are speeding up. Or maybe it's just that keeping a monthly blog is one way to make you acutely aware of the ever-constant passing of time. Still, it's been an awesome month, so who can complain? I mean, just have a look at some of the wonderful new toys that have made it my way in the last thirty days or so. This one's particularly photo-heavy, so strap in and let's crack on, shall we?

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

MONTH IN REVIEW: April 2019



So we're over four months into the year already, and I'm certainly trying to keep the momentum going with the regular blog update! In fact this month I think I must've been bitten by the photography bug, as I've well-and-truly overdone it in terms of the sheer numbers of pics I've stuffed into this article... but perhaps that just says how much I've enjoyed some of the toys that have come my way, eh? Read on and you'll see just how much!

Monday, 1 April 2019

MONTH IN REVIEW: March 2019



If you've been following my blog recently you'll have noticed that I have started up my monthly reviews again, giving an overview of all the various bits & bobs I've been adding to my collection month by month. January and February have already been pretty busy months, but for March there's a bit of a change of tack in that much of the stuff here I've been hanging onto for a little while already, and have simply taken the opportunity to unpack for the first time!

Friday, 1 March 2019

MONTH IN REVIEW: February 2019



I mentioned in January's entry that I had decided to pick-up doing a monthly review of my collecting again, having originally started doing this at the beginning of last year. Well, here we are, straight into February, and what a month it's been - especially on the reveals front! Lots of new and exciting stuff has been unveiled over the last twenty eight days, and a couple of prize pieces added to the collection during that time too.

Thursday, 14 February 2019

REVIEW: Generation 1 Decepticon Targetmasters (1987)



Just last week I posted an article about my complete collection of 1987 Autobot Targetmasters, where I explained that the reason for doing so was an attempt to focus in on some of the sublines of Generation 1 I have completed since diving head first back into vintage collecting. Some of these individual toys have already featured in my favourite vintage purchases from last year, but I thought that there was good opportunity for a few follow up articles too. Well, having done the good guys, now it's time for the Decepticons!

Monday, 11 February 2019

GALLERY: G1 Season 1 Autobots & Decepticons



If you follow me on social media at all then you may have come across my series of G1 cartoon portraits, which I've been posting daily for the last few weeks. Well, now it's time to share the entire completed series in one place, with a full album of all forty-five characters! The idea really came about as a celebration of seeing every season 1 main character represented in Masterpiece or third party form of some kind, even though in reality that roster is ever-evolving! In fact, with a new Masterpiece Bumblebee having just been properly revealed, not to mention a new Optimus Prime and Hound on the way, it shows you how much this line-up will likely change in the future. However, it's a good snapshot of where my collection currently stands and the choices I have made so far for each character.

Friday, 8 February 2019

REVIEW: Generation 1 Autobot Targetmasters (1987)



Alright look, I admit it - I collect G1. In-jokes asides, it's true that I've spent the last year and a bit dipping my toes back into vintage collecting. OK fine, I'm probably neck deep by this point, but who's complaining when there's so much G1 goodness to be explored, eh? If you've not seen it yet, I recently put together a bit of a top ten list of my favourite vintage purchases from last year, which gave me another great opportunity to revisit and photograph a lot of toys that I had picked up over the previous twelve months. Well, it kinda gave me the idea to also do a few follow-up articles like this one, focusing in on some of the different sublines that we experienced through the '80s. It's not really intended as a review of the toys themselves, but more as a way of exploring my own collecting experiences a little further, and showcasing the choices I've made when it comes to assembling a vintage line-up.

Wednesday, 6 February 2019

MONTH IN REVIEW: January 2019



If you were following my blog last year, then you'll know that in January I started doing a monthly round-up of all the various bits I had added to my collection over the previous month. It started out as a way to give a bit of focus to new toys outside of my regular reviews, and became a great way for me to be able to ensure that proper time and attention was given to showcasing photography for stuff that otherwise might not get a mention on this site. Life being what it is, the whole idea kind of went on hiatus for a little while, but given that we're at the start of a new year again it seemed like a good time to give it another go! So here we are.

Monday, 4 February 2019

YEAR IN REVIEW: 2018 (VINTAGE EDITION)


Regular readers will know that I have been on something of a voyage of vintage discovery recently. Despite having owned a fair portion of Generation 1 toys at one point or another in my time, I started to find my interest growing back towards this area of collecting rather significantly around the latter half of 2017. It's fair to say that 2018 was the really bumper year for me though - perhaps even a little more than initially intended! So, when it came time to put together my review of new toys from last year, it somehow seemed unfulfilling to lump in my old school discoveries with that list. Hence they have earned an entirely new list of their own!

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

YEAR IN REVIEW: 2018


I seem to find myself saying the same thing every time, but it really has been an incredible year. One thing I certainly appreciate about reflecting over the previous twelve months' collecting is the opportunity to acknowledge how lucky we are as collectors to live in an age with so much incredible product on offer to us. The fact that we frequently have to use budget and space as goalposts for what we're able to collect shows you the absolute wealth of quality options on offer, and it was certainly evident to me in the calibre that I found myself considering for this list. However, I was determined to give it a go, especially as many of you have noted that I've been on something of a sabbatical from blog entries of late.

Monday, 2 July 2018

REVIEW: X-Transbots Flipout



INTRODUCTION
X-Transbots Crackup only recently arrived as the first competitor in what is already becoming a war of third party Stunticons. Hot on his heels is Flipout, their interpretation of a Masterpiece-styled Wildrider, and it bodes well for the company that they seem to be planning to release these guys in quickfire succession. DX9 have yet to reveal any of their individual designs after their version of Breakdown, let alone the combined mode, whilst new competitor FansToys have only just managed to unveil rough renders of their first two attempts (and going by their history it's going to be a good long while before we see anything concrete). Meanwhile X-Transbots are busy cleaning up. With a hugely attractive price-point, Crackup has been enough to tempt many collectors along the journey, and thus far has been met with a generally positive reception (including my own review earlier this month). But how does their sophomore effort fair? Thanks to the folks at TFs Express, we can now find out.

Monday, 18 June 2018

REVIEW: X-Transbots MX-XIII Crackup



INTRODUCTION
Third party combiners are nothing new. In fact, they've been going for years, with pretty much every big-robot-created-from-several-little-robots team you can think of realised in a non-official format of one kind or another. However, Masterpiece-styled third party combiners are a bit of a more recent revelation, and there's still plenty of real estate left to be conquered as far as realising all of the various characters in show-accurate, appropriately-scaled toy form goes. So when X-Transbots first unveiled their plans to release renditions of the Stunticons, no other company had thus far attempted it in a true MP-style. Sure, there've been some very cool attempts, most notably TransFormMission's recent more-stylised effort, but nothing that screams the look and feel that many of us would be hoping for from the Menasor team.

Thursday, 31 May 2018

MONTH IN REVIEW: May 2018



So, regular readers will no doubt have noticed my gradual (OK, not so gradual) descent into G1 madness over the last six months or so. In truth it's been on the cards for a lot longer than that, but the joy of rediscovering old favourites has proven too much fun for me to hold the floodgates shut too much, and that's to say nothing of how thrilling it has been to discover at least a couple of moulds from decades ago that I'd never even experienced before! Well, that trend continues aplenty this month, and in particular you'll note that we're taking a dizzying trip back to 1987, with a few pit stops in 1988 for good measure. These two years make up one of my favourite eras of Transformers collecting, with an amazing number of truly epic toys and creative concepts hailing from within just a twenty-four-month period. Anyway, before I give the game away, have a read of what's in store and see for yourself how lovely this lot is.

Monday, 30 April 2018

MONTH IN REVIEW: April 2018



I mentioned last month that I may have been on something of a G1 kick of late, and when you're done reading this month's write-up, you'll likely agree that's no exaggeration... in fact there's possibly only so many months of collecting like this one that I can write about before people start pegging me as an actual full-time, no-holds-barred G1 collector. Which I'm really not, honest. There just hasn't exactly been a lot going on in the Masterpiece world of late, has there? Yeah, that must be it. All that said, what did April bring?

Saturday, 31 March 2018

MONTH IN REVIEW: March 2018



OK, so despite all my best protestations to the contrary, those who know me may well have noticed that I have been on something of a G1 kick recently. Do I collect G1? Well, you'll never hear me publicly admit that (it's a running joke), but no doubt there's something exciting about the hunt for minty specimens of vintage items that's been captivating me of late. If you read my review of February then you'll have maybe noticed some of the journey I've been on as part of that rediscovery, but things have definitely kicked up a notch in the month since.

So, what did March bring?

Saturday, 10 March 2018

REVIEW: TakaraTomy Masterpiece MP-40 Targetmaster Hot Rodimus



One day someone will put together a list of "rather underwhelming new Transformers toy reveals", and I have no doubt that MP-40 deserves a spot somewhere on that list. Seriously now, would anyone have pegged Targetmaster Hot Rod, a seemingly-close repaint of a figure we received almost exactly two years prior as a desirable choice for the next mainline Masterpiece figure? The problem is of course compounded by the lack of other reveals happening at the moment; as it stands this chap is actually the last G1 standard release character on the roster, with only Beast Wars Dinobot and the special edition MP-17+ Prowl left to go before we're potentially in limbo. Whilst that doesn't concern me too much (I have no doubt Takara are cooking up something), I can understand why MP-40 was met with a collective sense of "huh?" when he was announced. After a fantastic last year run with the likes of Grapple, Artfire, Sunstreaker, Megatron... I don't think anyone thought that this is how they'd kick off 2018. But hey, here we are.