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X-men

Legion – Chapter 2 – Finding Yourself Inside Your Lost Head

Just a side note, these episodes don’t have subtitles or names beyond “Chapter X”, I just add that for fun.  Sort of how I add little descriptor bits instead of episode names to my Agents of SHIELD recaps.

This second Episode of Legion was certainly less trippy than the first, though there was, ironically, some actual tripping at one point, briefly.  Things pick up essentially right after David was rescued at the end of the last episode, most of the episode involves David going on a mind trip through the powers of a Mutant, Ptonomy, who can work on people’s Memories to try to find the source of his Schizophrenia.  Melanie, the leader of whatever this group is called, is working to convince David that he isn’t crazy, the crazy is just a side effect of his Psychic powers.

Most of the episode is a trip down memory lane, there’s a bit involving him and his friend Lenny selling a stove for drugs, and some brief bits where David is talking to his shrink about why his girlfriend left him and some scenes involving a very young David being read a story called “The World’s Angriest Boy in the World” which seems to be about a father killing some kid’s mother.  We don’t actually get to see the father however, he is shrouded in shadow.  There is a spoiler here from the comics, but I’ll skip it for now, and it may not be in the show anyway.

The underlying plot though is that David has memories he is keeping hidden from the others, and unlocking them may be the key to figuring out his problems.  I’m also not convinced of who is real and who is not either.  Lenny shows up in a memory and “died” in the first episode, but she may still just be part of his Schizophrenia.  Syd Barret, David’s girlfriend may or may not be real either.  She is hanging around in this episode a lot, but always int he background or off to the side, it’s very… Fight Club… in it’s presentation.

There is also a bit at the end where David’s sister comes to the Asylum looking for him, but they claim he has never been there, and then Division 3 show up and take her into custody, which sets up David wanting to rescue her after seeing a vision of her in danger.

It’ll be interesting to see where things go next to be sure.

Legion – Chapter 1 – Professor Xavier’s Asylum for Insane Youngsters

Wowzers.  What a crazy show this is.  It’s kind of part of the “gimmick” here I suppose, given the main character is a paranoid schizophrenic.  Oh, and he’s also a Mutant, as in, X-men mutants.

Legion is the latest Marvel property television series, based on the comic book of the same name.  It shows on FX, on Wednesday night.  It is not, however, part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s part of Fox’s X-men universe, which includes all of the X-men and Wolverine Movies, and Deadpool.  There’s not really any direct references going on here however, nor are there likely to be any, though there may be a few little Easter eggs here and there.  It is the first television series set in this universe though last I checked there are two more coming, one called Hellfire and another unnamed X-men TV series.

I want to do little reviews on this series similar to the Agents of SHIELD recaps I’ve been doing, though I don’t intend to go into that much depth here.  Honestly, I’m not sure I could.  There’s just soooo much packed into this thing, especially within the first episode.

Legion is not your traditional super hero show, or even your traditional super hero.  Legion, at least in the comics, refers to the main character David, a schizophrenic Mutant Psychic.  The crazy part is explored, in depth, in this initial episode, and presented in a very interesting way.  Much of the episode, especially early on, is essentially a series of layers flashbacks and memories and flat out delusions.  Things jump constantly between locations and conversations and people in a frankly, confusing manner.  As things roll along though, things clear up a bit, and the plot starts to sharpen out into at least some level of presentable direction and explanation of what’s going on.

Though, it’s hard to really believe what’s going on, or what’s real and what’s not.  I’m inclined to believe most of the later bits that take place in the more modern era is real.  Most of the little bits with David as a child are also likely real, though memories of reality.  The questionable bits are what’s in between.  Everything at the Clockwork Asylum, and frankly, everyone he meets at the Asylum.

Reading up on Legion a bit from the comics on Wikipedia, he basically has multiple personalities that all manifest different powers.  There is also a bit about taking on personality and powers of others he touches, sort of a crazy, less messy version of Rogue crossed with Professor X.  There’s actually a potential spoiler regarding Professor X there as well that may or may not get addressed in the show.

Basically what I’m thinking, is the little bit at the end of the episode, with the dramatic escape involving half a dozen mutants, may just be David, at his peak, using all of his powers at once.

The episode started off kind of really strange and slow but by the end everything wrapped up in a good enough way that I’ll probably stick with it.  It’s only 8 episodes in the end anyway.

Tuesday Trailer – Logan

I admit I’m a little over obsessed with the MCU, but they have been doing something really interesting really well for a while now.  They aren’t quite the only ones who have actually managed to properly create a “Cinematic Universe” but they are close.  Fox’s X-men has done a pretty decent job of making a connected series of movies as well, including doing a reboot that ties in with the old movies even.

Logan here is part of that series, though I’m not entirely sure where it falls in the whole timeline.  It looks to be kind of post apocalyptic future, and Logan mentions there are no more mutants in his voice over.  It also features the return of Patrick Stewart as Professor X, which is a nice little bonus.  This kind of suggests it’s in the future, beyond X-men 3 and possibly Days of Future’s Past.  The current mainline X-men movies are running along in the 80s, though Deadpool seems to be set in the modern world.  Also, you know, Old Man Logan, though there is likely a plot reason for why that’s the case.

Aside from Xavier and Logan, there seems to be a few other mutants still in this world.  Logan in the trailer is hanging around with a mysterious young girl, one who is “much like him” according to the voice over.  There also seems to be some claws on claws.  Basically, it seems very likely that this is none other than X-23, who is basically Wolverine in young girl form, not literally, but in spirit.  While this is pretty cool, if this movie is set int he distant future, it’s kind of disappointing since it means she won’t be showing up later in the main movies, at least not without more time travel shenanigans.

There are also some rumors that Deadpool will show up in this film, though he doesn’t appear in the trailer anywhere and frankly, I kind of hope not, since I feel like he’s ruin the tone and steal the show so to speak.  I feel like it’s more likely that Gambit will make an appearance, given his history with Wolverine and because he’s getting his own film eventually.  Of course, there are timeline problems with this as well.

Review – Marvel Legends – Juggernaut Wave – Rogue

I’ve always really liked Rogue as a character.  She’s generally fun, she has an interesting power with interesting positives and negatives, her overall design is nice as well.  It probably helps that in the old cartoon series she was always paired with Gambit, whom I also really like as far as X-men go.  The point is, I am kind of biased towards Rogue, especially this particular design, which in general is one of her more popular designs.

Unfortunately, there has only been one other figure of this design in this size, back in the Toybiz line, and it is god awful.  Ok, the basic figure isn’t that bad, the face sculpt is god awful.  She looks like a 90 year old woman pretending to be Rogue or something.  She has been much overdue for an update.

This update certainly does a good job.  I kind of miss the cloth goods jacked of the old figure but the face sculpt this time around is a lot better to be sure.

She even has appropriate accessories to replicate her power, she comes with an ungloved hand.  In case you’re not familiar, Rogue absorbs other character’s powers through physical contact, so having an ungloved hand allow her be able to touch other figures, so to speak.  Her design even allows for the wrist bit of the glove to be removed, which is a nice touch.

My only real complaint is the usual hit or miss derpy eye look that is a problem across the board on Hasbro’s female figures.  I don’t even understand why this tends to lean towards females vs males.  Otherwise it’s a welcome update to a popular design for a popular character.

 

 

 

Review – Marvel Legends – Juggernaut Wave – Cable

It’s not every day we get a mother/son combo in a wave of Marvel Legends but here we are with Cable and Jean Grey.  Ok, technically Cable’s mother is a clone of Jean Grey but that’s just the way the kooky storylines of the X-men work.  I mean Cable really looks like he’s probably older than jean anyway, which he probably is since he comes from the future.  The reality is, Cable likely exists in this wave to accompany Deadpool, since Cable and Deadpool are partners from time to time.

It’s kind of a shame he’s not a better Cable, especially with how few X-men waves we get, he’s unlikely to get a better release anytime soon.  I mean he’s not awful, but he could be better.  For starters, his weird robot vest thing.  It’s not really his most iconic look for starters.  This wouldn’t be as much of an issue except that it also looks ridiculous, especially in the shoulders.  I imagine the idea is to make him look bulked out, but it makes his shoulders just look weird and disproportionate.

His weapons also leave a bit to be desired.  Cable was originally created by comic artist Rob Liefeld, who is mostly known for belts and pouches, and making everything very XTREEM huge.  Being from the future, Cable uses some funky huge guns, but both of his weapons are a bit finicky and don’t really look very natural when being held.  Part of this may be due to the funky armor shoulder effect mentioned above.

Otherwise the sculpt is solid though.  The head and armored arm both work well and look nice.  Cable is also sufficiently large compared to a lot of Marvel Legends figures, as he should be.    His upper torso weight and bulk make him a bit tricky to pose however, which also is part of the issue with his guns.

Like I said, Cable isn’t a bad figure, he just could be better.  Particularly in his weird torso area.

Review – Marvel Legends – Juggernaut Wave – Kitty Pryde

Spider-man somehow gets a wave every other wave, completed with six out of eight figures being new Spider People.  Captain America gets a new figure every wave and Iron Man every other wave.  Somehow, the X-men, arguably Marvel’s most popular property, only warrants one wave a year, if they are lucky.  The last wave was the Jubilee BAF wave too, which is one of the worst disasters is crummy distribution in the history of the line making it extremely pricey on the secondary market.  Fortunately the Juggernaut wave seems to be a little easier to get a hold of.  It’s a pretty solid wave all around as far as character choices too, though there are so many well known X-men characters that it would be hard to make a truly awful wave of X-men.

Today I wanted to take a look at Kitty Pryde, who ended up being a nice, unexpectedly nice figure from the wave.  Kitty has a lot of potential to be a boring throw away figure for sure.  Her costume design isn’t particularly flashy and there isn’t really any way to recreate her power with any interesting accessories.  The female figures in the Marvel Legends line are also inexplicably plagued with QC issues, especially when compared to their male counterparts.

Kitty manages to skirt right around almost all of these potential issues.  The biggest is just how nice she looks in sculpt and paint apps, particularly in the head.  I’m not saying they aren’t out there, but I have seen few reports of the common “derpy eyes” that shows up a LOT on the lady Marvel figures.  The flesh tone looks nice and natural, the hair sculpt and paint is nicely crisp.

The yellow and black on her uniform is very nicely done as well, yellow can often be a very problematic color for toys.  It definitely matches the look of one of her more well known uniforms overall as well.

Kitty Pryde also comes with an accessory in the form of her little dragon buddy Lockheed.  Lockheed is really great in his execution.  His overall shape from his wings to his tail added with the rubbery plastic he is made of allow him to easy perch on Kitty’s arms or shoulders easily without the need for any ugly pegs or clips.  It makes him look very natural on her and though it’s not a rock solid connection, it’s stable enough for some movement while he is attached to her.

Unfortunately, short of disassembling the figure, there isn’t any way to recreate her power, which involves passing through walls.  That’s not really a knock or anything, plenty of X-men have non visual powers like psychic abilities or invulnerability.   Kitty Pryde was a figure that I expected to be pretty lame but is probably one of the best figures in the wave.

Weekly Wednesday Haul – X-Men Edition

I mentioned on my original entry for this series that I probably wouldn’t post if I didn’t get anything, which happened last week.  Buying a Laptop pretty much killed my discretionary spending funds for a bit.  I’ve bounced back in good form though after hitting a few Walgreen’s Stores looking for X-Men Marvel Legends.  I hate the idea of “rushing” to get these figures but given that the previous X-men wave (granted it was a TRU exclusive) is impossible to find even second hand for a reasonable price and that in general Marvel Legends has gotten really screwy on it’s distribution, I don’t want to wait.  I still have only ever seen Iron Man from the Giant Man wave.

On a complete side note, last post I mentioned Kitty Pride doesn’t have a Juggernaut part, which was wrong, she has a Juggernaut part and the Onslaught Head.

Marvel Legends Rogue

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So, Rogue is a long wanted fan favorite member of the X-men for a lot of people, myself included.  She is a popular character with a pretty well known design and look.

More importantly, the only version available of this design for this scale is the old Toybiz version, which has one of the absolute worst heads ever designed for a Marvel Legends.  The old one also has those awful Toybiz lady hips.  Pretty much the only thing going for her is the jacket, which is pretty nice.  If this new rogue didn’t have sculpted sleeves, I’d have already given her that jacket.

New Rogue is definitely way better, though not perfect.  The eyes are a bit off on mine, though given these may end up hard to find, I didn’t really want to skip her.  The odd “derpy eyes” problem seems to plague almost every female Marvel Legends Hasbro puts out.

Marvel Legends Havok

Marvel Legends HavokTwo weeks ago, when I was broke, I came across Havok at the Walgreen’s in town and was sure that he’d be gone by the time I got paid again.  I wasn’t super worried, he’s not anything special and feels like one of the “He’ll be $15 on Amazon eventually after all of the $50 Deadpools and $30 Cables and Wolverines are sold out”.  Surprisingly, he was still there, with his Namor buddies.

Havok isn’t a super popular member of the X-men by any stretch, though he did show up in several of the movies.  His primary trait is pretty much “Being Cyclops’ Brother”.  He has a pseudo similar power to Cyclops, he shoots bursts of energy from his body, though Havok isn’t limited to blasting them out of his eyes and he has to “charge” up after using up some of his energy.

He also “radiates” energy after he’s charged, which is sort of what the doofy arm bands are supposed to represent.  They work similarly to the energy effect included with Scarlet Witch, Dr. Strange, and others, but it’s a different design.  This one has more of a spiral design as well as some bubbly effects.

There isn’t anything super flashy about his design, he’s pretty much a standard “guy in a skin suit” design.

Marvel Legends Punisher

Marvel Legends PunisherOk, Frank Castle isn’t a member of the X-men, nor is he even a mutant.  He’s a Walgreens elusive though, just being released, and when I came across him, I figured why not.  These Walgreens exclusives actually tend to clog shelves though, which kind of sucks because they all tend to be pretty alright.

I feel like Punisher may not linger as bad as Yellow Daredevil or that Ant Man.  He’s not a repaint of an existing figure, he’s got a bunch of accessories, and he is probably the most well known of all of the exclusives so far (with the possible exception of Namor).

Punisher is a pretty nice figure with one, tragic, stupid flaw.  His hands have no trigger fingers.  Of all the figures who get needless trigger finger hands, somehow, Hasbro managed to completely screw up with the one character who is very well known for using guns.  Not to mention he includes THREE trigger based weapons.  This can be fixed, carefully, with some sort of knife, but this creates a new problem where the hands don’t grip quite enough to hold the guns.  Take the photo here, his white gun repeatedly fell out of his hand while trying to take the photo, from barely any movement.

He also includes a head without the bandana.  I have some gripes with the heads included, neither is particularly angry looking.  Frank Castle really kind of needs a good “Angry Head”.  The bandana head looks tougher, but it’s still not really a “I’m going to kill you” head, more of a “I’m going to get you for that” head.

Side note, because it came up elsewhere, Punisher uses the same body as Grim Reaper.

Weekly Wednesday Haul – Laptop Edition

This week’s Weekly Haul includes one of those “non toy” things I mentioned last time.  I’ve been working on updating my laptop for a while, and I finally did.

The Laptop

Acer Aspire E15I’ll go into more details over on [Blogging Intensifies] at some point, but the basic idea here is, I’ve been using the same small HP Netbook for five or six years now.  I finally managed to save up enough to upgrade.  I didn’t get anything super fancy, the new laptop is an Acer Aspire E15.  It’s fairly new but then there are new laptops out all the time.

So far it’s definitely better than the old laptop, though anything would be.  It runs games, it edits Photos, it’s got plenty of ports and much better specs.  Like I said, I’ll do a detailed but over on the other blog.

Moving on to the toys…

Marvel Legends Ultron Wave, Giant Man, Reaper, and Tigershark

I flip flopped a lot on this wave when it was initially put out.  There were a few interesting looking character, but no one I particularly cared about aside from Ant-Man himself.  Well, plus the Build a Figure Ultron.  I feel like ultimately this was the feeling of, well, everyone.  The wave sold poorly.  I only originally bought Ant-Man and Wasp (twice, I wanted the head for a shoddy Daisy Johnson custom).  I figured in the end, for the money, if I really wanted an Ultron, I would be better off just buying a Figuarts or something.

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HasbroToyShop apparently has an eBay page where they clear out old stock however, and it was brought to my attention that they had this wave in stock, for $6 per figure.  Essentially, I could pay around $24, or normal retail for a single figure, for Ultron, with a bunch of other “bonus” figures.  I had originally kind of wanted Reaper anyway, just because he’s kind of a zany design.  Sadly, Bulldozer apparently sold out immediately, he wasn’t available, and I jumped on this almost as soon as they were listed.  I’ll have to pick him up later to complete my Ultron, which I probably will do.

A quick rundown of each figure.  Giant Man is kind of boring by design, and not particularly Giant.  Tigershark is a big tough guy with claws and a goofy shark fin head.  Reaper is probably the most unique looking but his rubbery scythe is kind of garbage.  I’ll have to look around for some sort of ideas on how to mod it to be less shitty.  Ultron is better than I expected, though not amazing.  The colors don’t match well in spots, which kind of ruins the look a bit.  He’s big too.

Marvel Legends Juggernaut Wave Kitty Pryde

On paper, Kitty seems like a really boring figure.  Her super power is phasing through walls and whatnot, which can’t really be represented with any sort of accessory, she’s not particularly tough looking, her power itself really doesn’t make her feel super action packed to start with.  I did have a thought that if her joints were designed to pop apart easily you could say, separate her waist joint and make it look like she’s coming through the floor.  Given how so many pop apart joints feel like you’re going to destroy the figure, that’s probably not a super great idea though.

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It’s a pretty nice figure though.  The sculpt and paint are all nicely done.  None of the joints feel like they are going to break or stretch, which I keep finding in a lot of ML lately.  The dragon is nicely done as well, there is no peg or anything but the design and balance allows it to sit on her pretty well.  It’s obviously not secure enough to flop her around and keep it attached but the tail does this sort of wrap over along with the wings and claws that lets it grip enough to keep it balanced in poses pretty easily.

Like Deadpool, Kitty is superfluous to the Juggernaut BAF.  Deadpool has no BAF part, in favor of more accessories.  Kitty comes with a Magneto helmet head to use on the previous wave’s Red Skull Onslaught.  This allows you to build a proper Onslaught.