Twin Peaks

Twin Peaks is back…and it’s bringing action figures

Diane, it’s almost ten o’clock on Monday night, and I’ve just discovered something stupendous, something I never thought I’d see. No, not coffee that somehow manages to be even blacker than black, although that does sound pretty good right now. I’ve just discovered that Funko is about to unleash Twin Peaks action figures on the world.

At the 2017 London Toy Fair, Funko – best known currently for its seemingly endless variety of Vinyl Pop figures – unveiled not only Twin Peaks Vinyl Pops, but a selection of four 3 and 3/4″ Twin Peaks action figures as well. Perhaps it would be best to say that only three of them are action figures; one of the figures doesn’t really move…but then, the character of Laura Palmer didn’t really move much once she was wrapped in plastic.
Twin Peaks

As is often the case, Funko’s choice of characters to produce in what is often referred to as “the Star Wars scale” is both iconic and frustrating. Audrey and Leland, at least, get Vinyl Pops, but there’s no 3 and 3/4″ love for those all-important characters; the quartet of figures instead consists of Agent Dale Cooper, the Log Lady, the aforementioned plastic-wrapped corpse of Laura Palmer, and “Bob”, the spirit form of a deadly presence that inhabited more than one resident of Twin Peaks in the show’s two seasons on ABC. (It could be that the character choices are tied closely to Twin Peaks’ upcoming revival in May on Showtime – only time will tell.)

There is a welcome development for this latest round of 3 and 3/4″ figures from Funko – the “Star Wars standard” of five points of articulation (neck, shoulders, legs) has given way to nine point instead (adding elbow and knee joints); this slightly more modern approach puts these figures on a par with Big Bang Pow!’s Flash Gordon, Big Bang Theory and KISS action figures in the same scale. (Laura Palmer has no points of articulation, being dead and all. Blame it on rigor mortis…and hang her next to Carbonite Han in Jabba’s Palace.)


Will we ever get more characters in this format from Funko, which has drastically scaled back its ReAction line of 3 and 3/4″ figures in recent years? Overproduction of past 3 and 3/4″ lines such as Gremlins and classic Star Trek has given way to a more collector-oriented “boutique” approach with more recent licenses such as The Dark Crystal, The Golden Girls, and E.T.; however, Funko has irked a few collectors by not returning to the well for licenses that did prove popular. A good example of this was its Firefly license, which never delivered figures in any scale for Shepherd Book, River Tam, or Simon Tam, let alone any secondary or enemy characters – no Reavers, no Badger, no YoSaffBridge. Anyone who spent any time watching Twin Peaks at the height of its popularity knows that the show was about far more than just these four characters (one of whom is, it has to be said again for emphasis, dead and motionless); whether we’ll ever get more than three characters and a plastic corpse remains to be seen.

It’s also not known if these figures will be individually carded or sold as a boxed set, a la the more recent E.T. and Golden Girls box sets.

Funko’s line of Twin Peaks 3 and 3/4″ figures will arrive later this year.

Where Is The Love For Firefly?

Yes, Storm Shadow is awesome, and Snake Eyes is the prototype of awesome. Heck, even Jinx was pretty cool. All are ninja-like characters who are worthy of the love they still get today. I ask, though, where’s the love for Firefly?
firefly
I’m not sure if I had Snake Eyes or not. I’m pretty sure I didn’t have Storm Shadow (though I could be wrong). But I know I had Firefly. In my mind, he was just as awesome as SE or SS. He had a lithe camo outfit that was pretty ninja-like, and he was an infiltration expert, which is pretty ninja-like as well. In my mind, that made him a ninja, which is exactly how I used him.

Cool as I thought Firefly was, though, there were a couple of things I didn’t understand about him. I somehow understood that he was an infiltration and demolitions expert. But I didn’t understand that he was a mercenary and I certainly didn’t understand that he belonged to Cobra. I thought he was a Joe!
firefly-joe
In all likelihood, the confusion comes from the fact that I often traded toys with the neighborhood kids, meaning that I would receive the toys without the packaging and the instruction manuals. So I had never read Firefly’s file card or seen the Cobra logo on his blister pack. I just saw him and had to make up my own story for him, which I did, turning him from Cobra saboteur to Joe wild card. But even though he wasn’t as noble as I thought he was, I still think he is worth some love.

Titan Books Presents: Joss Whedon – The Complete Companion

A big thanks to our friends over at Titan Books and PopMatters for allowing me the chance to review their new tome on one of my favorite creators of TV, Movies, Comic Books, and Musicals. Joss Whedon. Here is the Synopsis from the Titan Books site:

THE ESSENTIAL UNOFFICIAL GUIDE TO THE WHEDONVERSE

Joss Whedon’s importance in contemporary pop culture can hardly be overstated, but there has never been a book providing a comprehensive survey of his career as a whole – until now. The Complete Companion covers every aspect of the Whedonverse through insightful essays and interviews, including fascinating conversations with key collaborators Jane Espenson and Tim Minear.

Over 40 contributors have been brought together by PopMatters, the acclaimed international magazine of cultural criticism, to provide an irresistible mix of analysis, interpretation and sheer celebration. Whether you’re a student looking for critical approaches to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, or a Browncoat who follows Nathan Fillion on Twitter (or, let’s face it, both) there is plenty here to enjoy.

Covers all the TV series, movies, and comic books, including:

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly, Dollhouse, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, Fray, Astonishing X-Men, The Avengers… and more!” End Italics

I became a fan of Whedon a little late in the game, becoming addicted to Buffy the Vampire Slayer around the third season thanks to reruns on the FX network in the early afternoons before work quite a few years back now. While my work schedule has always kept me from watching the series that Joss has been connected with during their initial debuts I found myself wholly drinking of the Kool-Aid of Whedon when it came to Science Fiction western, Firefly.

I should also clear up from my comment up top that I didn’t realize I was a Whedon fan until Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s third season. Thanks to the Joss Whedon Complete Companion I learned that he was a script doctor for some of my favorite animated films like say…Toy Story, Titan A.E., and Atlantis: The Lost Empire. He also rewrote the script for Speed but was uncredited as well as the 1996 popcorn flick, Twister.

Joss Whedon has gone on to do comic work, writing Astonishing X-Men and Runaways for Marvel Comics. Fray for Dark Horse comics which is a futuristic spin-off from the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series which Whedon has written in comic form as well. Joss has written Angel, itself a TV spin-off of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, in comic form for IDW Publishing.

The Complete Companion is a 477 page tome that like the Synopsis says, the 40 contributors are varied, some are complete serious scholarly writings, nay some are basically a thesis on a particular show or aspect of the Whedonverse. Others are from the viewpoints of fans that finds themselves compelled to explain the reason why Joss Whedon’s work inspires them in life.

With the absolutely fantastic Cabin in the Woods still in theaters, which Whedon co-wrote and produced with Drew Goddard, and the Avengers just hitting the silver screens yesterday, it is the perfect time for any fan of the many projects that Joss has been involved with to pick up this book. It’s a smart and educating read.

You can pick up a copy at Titan Books and Amazon.

Serenity Constructed Out Of Legos By Chris Doyle!

I really, really loved the television show Firefly. I’m not sure if I consider myself such a fan that I would be labeled as a Browncoat or not, but I do know that I’ll watch the series once or twice a year. I also happen to really, really love Legos though sadly my house at the moment cannot withstand the addition of a Lego Moria…someday though. So when I saw this amazing construct of my favorite Firefly-class transport ship from Chris Doyle at Reasonably Clever, I just knew I had to share it with you all.

That is a thing of beauty and in this crazy Verse that is something that Chris Doyle can be proud of.

The Tick Loves Santa Christmas Episode (1995)


I have long thought that Ben Edlund (Firefly, Angel, the Venture Bros., Supernatural) trapped lightning in a bottle when he came up with the nigh-invulnerable blue hued superhero, the Tick. I was a fan of the comics and I certainly found myself giggling on Saturday Mornings while watching the animated series on Fox Kids.

With the Holiday season around us, join me this morning and grab a nice cup of hot chocolate and let’s watch from 1995, thanks to Crazy Cimano over on YouTube, “The Tick Loves Santa”.

“If he jumps up and kicks you in the stomach, it’s probably not Santa!”