Finally, an accountant and/or lawyer action figure. Now kids can play out their auditing or litigation power fantasies from the comfort of their living room carpet!
Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker had everything– the fourth vocalist of Black Flag, Clarissa Explains it All, Luke Skywalker, Boy Meets World, Smallville’s Lex Luthor and Justice League’s The Flash, Mrs. Mom from Mr. Mom, and Megatron. It also had a toy line.
The film featured a remarkable, toyetic cast of clown-themed villains working under the titular Joker. Their designs are so memorable that you might think they appeared in Batman Beyond often, and not just in this movie and an episode of Justice League Unlimited. But no, those are their only two appearances, and they are still iconic.
- Bonk – a hulking, brutish Nosferatu/clown hybrid that was once a hardcore frontman and is now a spoken word grump
- Chucko – a terrifying murder clown whose lower body was eventually replaced with a large beach ball
- Dee Dee – Harley Quinn’s granddaughters and twin Sabrinas
- Ghoul – a Halloween pumpkin man in a witch hat
- Woof – an honest-to-god cyberpunk werehyena
You’d think this colorful cast of circus-themed horror weirdos would make for an incredible toy line done in the Kenner-disguised-as-Hasbro style. But that wasn’t quite what we got.
I’m here to take an in-depth look at the toy line we actually got for Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, and there’s neither a werehyena nor an especially large clown in sight.
Here’s a review of each figure from Hasbro’s 2000 Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker toy line.
For at least five years (longer in the underground rock world), we’ve been repeating and reliving the 90s. This website is prime evidence– none of us are immune, even worldly sophisticates such as yours truly. Humans are always retreading pop culture from years past. The cartoon snake devours its action figure tail while hissing, “I WASSS ONSSSE A MAAANNN”
As you’ll kindly recall, the 1990s were all about the 1960s and the 60s hangover that was the early 70s. Smash Mouth appeared on the scene in the 1990s as a 60s-schlock appropriating ska-punk band and then ruined rock music forever. Our friends and loved ones wore “flare jeans” from Old Navy that were just rebranded bell bottoms. People sewed little cutesy flower patches all over their jackets, pants, and backpacks. Psychedelic rock came back in a big way and songs got way too long again. And, to add 20 pounds of shit to an already-full 10 pound bag, Austin Powers came along and ruined movie quotes forever.
In 1994, GI Joe was also feeling some 60s nostalgia. To supplement its main GI Joe line and celebrate the brand’s 30th anniversary, Hasbro released a Commemorative Collection of 3 ¾” figures styled after the 12” figures of old. They were counting on older collectors with nostalgia for the old 12” toys to buy these new figures, and probably hoping that some GI Joe-loving kids would pick a few of the toys up, too.
I was a 10 year old kid in 1994, and I only had a loose idea of what GI Joe looked like in the 60s and 70s. But I did have several figures from the Commemorative Collection, which I integrated seamlessly into my ARAH Joe collection.
Today we’re taking a look at the 1994 GI Joe Action Sailor, who is simultaneously a burned-out hippie and a lapdog of the military industrial complex. Nostalgia is fun!
Isn’t Cyberpunk 2077 Epic? I mean sure the devs lied and we should hate them (for a little while) and it has some bugs on peasant boxes (consoles, lol), but it runs perfectly on my 69,420 gigawatt custom PC with super rare ($6000 on eBay) video card and custom lighting (red).
That’s right, friendos, I’m a gamer now. I deleted my 100+ Animal Crossing hour (girl game, also Political) save and got into Dark Souls (Epic game, not Political) where I’ve logged over 6 full work days on Steam.
What turned me from a normie toyboi into an Epic gamer, you ask?
That’s an easy one, gentlesir. It was only the Batman – Legends of the Dark Knight – Batgirl, released by Kenner in 1998.
I was on another podcast! It’s been a good week for me.
This time, my friend David had me on his podcast RetroCabal. Dave’s a great guy, and we’ve been friends on Twitter and Instagram for a couple years now, so it was great to actually talk to him. He’s a bit younger than me, but he also has a passion for 90s toys and the properties that spawned them.
Join us as we talk about 93-94 GI Joe, Beast Wars, Exosquad, the pre-WWE WWF, and more!
David is passionate, positive, and knowledgeable. It’s a great combo. Also, I’m there.
You can listen below or find the podcast on all of your favorite aggregators.
You can also find David on Twitter.
Thanks for listening! I hope you enjoy it.
Today is my birthday. Also, today marks the release of episode 180 of longtime Dragon Fortress Ally GI Joburg’s 180th episode, which I’m featured on! I couldn’t think of any better way to celebrate. Check out the YouTube embed below, visit them on Podbean, or listen via your favorite podcast aggregator.
Let’s get NEON.
It’s August 2020, which means it’s time for Cobra Convergence V (full schedule and links here)! Here’s my little contribution to this amazing community event that Hooded Cobra Commander 788 spearheads every year.
Today I’m joined by my friend RTG of Attica Gazette for a look at the 1992 GI Joe Ninja Viper, who was available exclusively as a mail-in offer. RTG is doing me a huge favor by providing photos and analysis– I never experienced the original Storm Shadow mold as a kid, and he’s written extensively about the figure and has something insightful to say each time he does. I couldn’t think of anyone better to help me out with this one.
Here’s the figure’s filecard, presented without embellishment or commentary, courtesy of YoJoe. It’s pretty wild.
Motto: “He who masters the art of self discipline can crush any adversary, even G.I.Joe!”
Recruited from the highest ranks of Cobra’s Viper Corps, the COBRA NINJA VIPERS are the elite representation of Cobra’s new elevated level of ruthlessness. Only the most sinister and cunning Cobras are selected for duty as Ninja Vipers. Cobra Ninja Vipers are no less than 10th level black belts in karate, jujitsu and kung fu. These villains are extremely obedient and always carry out their orders to the letter. They function as covert subversives who can “persuade” any foe to do their bidding by entrapping the individual in one of their patented martial arts maneuvers. If given the opportunity, Cobra Ninja Vipers could wreak enough havoc worldwide to seriously damage G.I. Joe’s global operations.
This review is a bit different. Not only are we looking at an action figure from a toy line we’ve never talked about here before, but my friend Pat is also joining us. Pat is one of my oldest, dearest friends and we’ve undertaken many regrettable projects together. Here is our latest.
If you like both Pat and myself, know that we both contributed to the TMUK/Toy-Fu Transformers Action Masters Zine I wrote about in my last post. Pat’s contribution to the zine is a comic, and if anything else included in that zine makes me laugh that hard, I promise I will literally eat my hat and then never fulfill that promise.
Let’s talk about some old Kenner Batman toys! Today we’re going on at length about Kenner’s 1992 Turbojet Batman from the Batman: The Animated Series line.
If that title doesn’t entice you, I don’t know what to tell you.
This year I got to write about Action Masters!
If you live in the UK, you can also order a physical copy and some awesome pins and postcards.
Full details below.
Motto: “Like a pointed, crystal icicle, I can also be found in the Williams Sonoma holiday catalog for the unbelievable price of $399.99. ”
BUSHIDO was born in Queens, where he decided to become a samurai, like his father before him. Unfortunately, his father wasn’t actually a samurai, and a samurai isn’t really a thing you can still be. Just ask BUDO. Met his “blood brother” BANZAI at a bar in the Bronx, where they used a pocket knife to complete the unhygienic ritual that bonds them to this day. Using his parents’ money, he “studied abroad” in Iceland, where he learned everything he knows about being a Snow Ninja– which is “basically being a samurai, just ask anyone.” Watched SNAKE EYES and STORM SHADOW slap-box in the commissary once, so is one of GI Joe’s foremost martial arts experts. Wears high-top sneakers.
- Family Heirloom Samurai Hat (also from Williams Sonoma catalog)
- High Top Sneakers (no, seriously, this is on his actual file card)