G.I. Joe Flashback, an independent film about a key era in the lives of several future Joes, is now funding with under 30 days to go!
We all know the stories– the tale first recounted in Marvel Comics G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #26— of a Vietnam LLRP team consisting of the men who would go on to become Stalker, Storm Shadow, and Snake Eyes. However, do we know the stories that came before those events in which Tommy dropped everything to rescue his friend, cementing the bond between them?
This is going to be more than just a “fan film”. The folks behind G.I. Joe Flashback are bringing in some real talent to not just tell this story but to tell it right. The film is produced by cosplayer extrordinaire “Skinny“, and features a talented and passionate group of fans helping to bring it to light. Names like Bill Nedrow and Paul Panfalone are no strangers to the fan community. Every detail from the story to the score is being supervised with a true reverence to the source material.
A good reference book is an invaluable resource when managing a collection. In fact, you might even say that it’s ESSENTIAL, especially when the collection involves multiple variations of characters and a seemingly endless supply of tiny accessories. The internet and hobby dedicated websites are an invaluable resource but nothing beats a good tangible book filled with high quality photos showcasing every knife, pistol, helmet, and accessory. Plus, a good book is always there whether or not you have a WiFi connection available.
It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of Dan Klingensmith’s incredible 3.75″ Joe series of books. (Also known as 3.75 Inch Joe: Creating G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero) These meticulously researched volumes collect rare pieces of production artwork and pair them with insightful commentary from the classic line’s original designers. The end result is nothing short of amazing– a brilliantly laid-out piece that long-time Joe fans will pore over for hours.
Let’s face it– for many fans the G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero animated series is THE version of Joe. Debuting as a pair of syndicated mini-series, these cartoon adventures greeted countless school children as they rushed home from school each day to catch the next installment in the serial. The cartoons showcased the vehicles and characters that were soon to dominate store shelves and children’s imaginations in the coming months. However, as diverse as the roster of figures and vehicles was there some were moments in the story where the writers and animators introduced their own concepts. One such moment occurred in the third episode of the “Revenge of Cobra” mini-series in episode cheekily-named “The Palace of Doom“:
Remember the Cobra Sentinel? The giant snake-themed robot that went mano-et-mano with the giant temple guardian? The mechanized monster just blew me away. As a kid, I had to have one but sadly it was not meant to be. The automaton that towered over Major Bludd existed only in the cartoon and was never produced in action figure form. However, that is about to change. Continue reading →
Animal Warriors of the Kingdom returns to Kickstarter on May 1, 2017! Check out the official announcement below!
Spero Studio was founded by Jason Bienvenu and Brandon Gary, inspired by the 4 scale, toy lines of the mid 70’s, 80’s & 90’s, Spero focuses on bringing back the fun and joy from these eras with high quality products featuring modern articulation and accessories!
Figure design and control art by Jason Bienvenu, beautifully sculpted by Jose Fernandez and Fabiano Carlos Coelho.
ANIMAL WARRIORS OF THE KINGDOM™ Series One: will consist of Ape, Canine, and Feline warriors, including the series main protagonist the albino ape Pale and he’s vile nemesis Baron Kah Lee. Each figure features 17 points of articulation as well as weapon accessories.
FIGURE INCLUDES: 1 Figure, accessories as well as removable armor! Mix and match your figures weapons and gear to create unique army builders
PALE: ADVENTURE ARMOR –The young albino ape king sports his trademark Mohawk and red armor while wielding the ability to absorb his fallen enemies powers; however this gift comes at a great cost as their ghosts become attached to him and slowly drive him mad!
BARON KAH LEE – The tyrannical ruler over all of the Ape Kingdom. This devious villain rules with an Iron paw and will stop at nothing to secure his place at the thrown, including eliminating the rightful ruler, Pale the young ape king! Create Kah Lee’s Elite Guard with alternate head accessory.
LEON: This traveling hero roams from town to town fighting for honor and revenge. His people were among the first to be displaced and enslaved by the Baron’s reign.
CHUNARIAN SOLDIERS -These heroic soldiers make up the backbone of the Chunarian army and guard the walls of the sanctuary jungle city of Chuh-Nar from enemies of every kind. Create the Captain of the Guard with alternate head accessory.
CAPTAIN BRUTUS & THE HORRID KNIGHTS – Feral Mandrill soldiers meant to overwhelm and decimate rival armies; what they lack in fighting skill they make up for with sheer numbers and unhinged savagery! Create the Horrid Knights with alternate head accessory.
HORRID ASSASSINS – Only slightly less vile than the mandrills these chimps are deadly with a bow but can wield a blade when in a bind. These apes rain hate down on opposing armies as the city gates give way to the steady push of the horrid!
STRETCH GOAL FIGURES! Sneak Peak
SERIES ONE WAVE TWO
STENCHER! This skunk is his own one animal army, his wretched stench can incapacitate almost anyone; and if his fowl odder doesn’t defeat you his formidable fighting skills will.
We’re close! We’re really close! The amazing Western-themed Dime Novel Legends Kickstarter is within spitting distance of crossing the line into fully-funded territory. With 17 days remaining this is not only doable but it also means that stretch goals have a good chance of becoming unlocked. All it takes is for more people to jump on board the wagon and throw some support to this incredible line!
I won’t lie.. I’m crazy excited about seeing the Dime Novel Legends line become a reality. Maybe it’s the fact that I grew up at the end of the great western era of Hollywood, weaned on old re-runs of The Lone Ranger and Gunsmoke. (Badlands Vigilante anyone?) Maybe it’s the fact that my roommate and I obsessively watched Tombstone in college. (I can still quote whole scenes from memory.) Maybe it’s just the fact that the American Western is such an iconic part of our culture that has been largely ignored by the toy industry of late. Whatever the reason, THIS is the toy line that has me as excited as a six year old during his or her first visit to Toys R Us at Christmas.
Whether it’s just a pledge of $25.00 for one of the single character options, the “gather your posse” for $115.00 or even the “All-In” at $450 or more– consider throwing your support behind this incredible line. Westerns are starting to enjoy a bit of a renaissance of late– with the latest take on the Magnificent Seven hitting the big screen and the new Westworld series captivating viewers each week on HBO. How bad@$$ would it be to be have the Dime Novel Legends as part of your figure displays?
So mount up and head on over to Kickstarter and show your support today!
That’s right kids, 3.75″ Joe Volume 3 has four days left to fund on Kickstarter! Currently the project has raised $14,600 toward a goal of $16,000 needed to publish the next installment. It’s a completely achievable goal and one that our fandom should help achieve. A copy of the book is available for a pledge of support of only $40.00
I’ll admit it– I’ve been remiss on posting about this. 3.75″ Joe, volumes 1 & 2, have been sitting on my reference shelf since they were first published. They’re AMAZING volumes chock full of incredible pre-production artwork and insights into the designs of our favorite Real American Heroes. The previous two volumes include commentary from G.I. Joe designers and even the former brand manager of the ARAH years. They’re just utterly AMAZING works that can be enjoyed by EVERY fan of the ARAH era G.I. Joe!
Seriously– if you have the extra funds, consider supporting this AMAZING project!
The wait is almost over– the Dime Novel Legends Kickstarter will be starting on October 1, 2016.
The Old West. It was an era of untamed wilderness where law and order were administered as much by a revolver as by the badge. A time in which actions often spoke louder than words and when a man’s reputation carried as much weight as any credentials he could muster. It was a time of legends– often celebrated in radio, movies, televisions, and novels. Soon, this period of frontier justice will beo be available as a series of 1:18 scale action figures that celebrates some of the most dynamic icons of this bygone era.
Coming this October 1st from Chicken Fried Toys and Dime Novel Legends is the Kickstarter project you’ve been waiting for!
Here’s the official press release:
Announcing a LEGENDARY Western-Themed 1:18th Scale Toy Line Kickstarter Campaign!
Dallas/Forth Worth — When searching for highly articulated action figures in 1:18th scale, aisle 3C is looking like a modern ghost town these days. Therefore it’s no surprise that a number of small companies are striving to fill the gap for collectors of this action figure scale.
To this end, Chicken Fried ToysTM (CFT) is proud to introduce their Dime Novel LegendsTM (DNL), their first-ever lineup of 3.75-inch, fully articulated, collectible action figures that bring back the essence of the American Frontier West. These 15 realistic reproductions of iconic Western archetypes feature authentic styling and looks, and include numerous accessories and gear that historically reflect the period between 1835 and 1895. This line will be introduced via Kickstarter campaign on October 1, 2016 and will run for six (6) weeks.
The Dime Novel LegendsTMlineup will encompass characters drawn from the rich history of Frontier America during its expansion westward. While easily identifiable, these characters do not represent any single person from history, film or literature. Rather, they are an amalgamation taken from the collective imaginations of enthusiasts who have long dreamed of accumulating an entire Western community of cowboys, townfolk, lawmen, bandits, and Native Americans from an often ignored and nigh-forgotten part of America’s unique and rich history.
Chicken Fried ToysTMwill introduce these iconic action figures intended for the adult collector featuring 16 points of articulation as part of a Kickstarter campaign beginning October 2016.
Wave 1 will include:
The Marshal – Clad in black, with his long coat pulled back over his working hoslter to show ruffians that he means business, this icon comes with a “Hogleg” pistol, “Street Howitzer” long gun, and removable hat and jacket.
The Sheriff – Dressed like a “dandy” with a Derby and suitcoat, this lawman carries a cane, not so much for walking, but rather to give a sophisticated air to any cattle or mining camp he has been charged to protect.
Territories Lawman – Before the regions of the American West became states, they were territories under the jurisdiction of the Federal government. This storied African-American lawman comes with dual holsters and pistols, bandana, removable vest and hat. All this makes him the true definition of a Legend!
Trail Boss – Wearing chaps and a broad-brimmed hat, this honcho of the trail drive has all the trappings of a seasoned leader. If his stern look doesn’t command the respect he’s earned, he has a lever-action rifle and removable “Outlaw” pistol to back it up.
Saloon Bartender – No image of the classic Western town is complete without a bartender or shopkeeper. Likely the only person who can afford both moustache wax AND hair cream, often neutral in fights and always the center of information, this smiling gentleman with the apron is quick with a mug of refreshment, and a turn on the pickle/beer barrel.
Sharpshooter – Wearing a period-correct bib-front shirt, this misplaced Texan sports a removable bandana, Texas-sized hat, cartridge belt with working knife and sheathe, and a legendary buffalo rifle with flip-up rear sight.
Ranch Hand – No cattle drive is complete without the ubiquitous trail hand. His look is highlighted with tall Cavalry style boots, removable vest, and gun belt. His hat, surely bought fresh from the General Store with pay from working the latest cattle drive, tops his clean-cut look.
Head Honcho – Every gang has its ringleader; a rough and tumble, but quick-witted character who is not to be trifled with on any occasion. He wears a removable vest, gun belt, bandana, and Derby.
Gunfighter – The gang member with the cool temper and lightning quick six-guns is dressed in a suitcoat styled of the day. He has a removable hat, gun belt, twin holsters and pistols to fill ’em.
Vaquero – This everyday inhabitant of the Texas Southwest has a wide-brimmed hat to keep the desert sun off his shoulders, along with chaps, gun belt, pistol and Spanish silver spurs. Dressed up brightly in his best for the celebratory rodeo at the end of a long cattle drive, he cuts quite a colorful character.
Prospector – These men were some of the first brave souls to cross the Plains in search of riches and fortune, while “seein’ it all.” This old codger comes with an iconic hat and all the tools to hit the motherlode, including a pickaxe and pan.
Fire Brigadier – When every town is made of either wood or canvas, a firefighter or two becomes an essential part of the landscape. This member of the Old West Fire Brigade comes with a Victorian-era fire helmet, red bib-front shirt, Halligan tool, fire axe and suspenders!
Create Yer’ Own Outlaw – Clad in signature black and sporting a surly look, this villain will be named by Kickstarter participants in a poll run during the campaign. He will sport a long coat, Cavalry boots, double holsters for his gun belt, and two pitch-black pistols.
Create Yer’ Own Cowboy – Not just the name, but the color palette will be chosen by the “All-In!” Kickstarter pledges. This classically styled cowboy has chaps, unique hat, removable vest and all the right gear to complete your cattle drive!
Badlands Vigilante – This 15th figure is exclusive to the “All-In!” Kickstarter package. He has a unique portrait sculpt, removable “10-gallon” hat, bandana, suitcoat, gun belt, and shining silver six-guns.
The figures will be unlocked in the order listed above during the campaign. Tiered between each figure as they unlock will be the following collector accessories:
Gear Sets – Five sets comprised of different firearms, weapons, and gun belts in colors not available on any other figure during this initial offering.
Accessory Sets – Five sets of jackets, vests, hats and bandanas in colors not available on any other figure during this initial offering.
Buck-A-Roos!TM – Five “blank” figures each comprised of a single color shirt and sleeves, and different color britches with complementary colored boots. These colors will not be available on any other figure in the initial offering. Skin tones will vary from figure to figure for variety.
Prices for both individual figures and “All-In!” packages are still TBD. We will announce final pricing before the campaign begins to allow for collector budgeting. Retail costs after the campaign should not exceed $20 per figure.
Work on Wave 2 is already underway and will include Plains Indian Tribes, smooth-talking gamblers, Cavalry troops, a school marm, and close to a dozen more unique Western icons! Stay tuned for more details as work is completed and we proceed through the Kickstarter campaign.
For more information, click our Chicken Fried Toystm – Dime Novel Legendstm Facebook page! Chicken Fried ToysTMis Paul Mundheim and JE Russell, lifelong action figure collecting enthusiasts. Working in partnership with lauded Boss Fight Studio and Smalljoes.com, CFT knows the unique mind of the 1:18th scale action figure collector like no other. Saddle up, and come along for the ride!
What else do you need– a federal marshall to ride up and deliver you a written summons? Seriously– mark October 1, 2016 on your calendars and get ready to support Dime Novel Legends!
Yes, I realize that there are plenty of high-quality toy lines vying for the attention of collectors these days. From the Marauder Task Force to the amazing Vitruvian HACKS to the forthcoming Legends of the West, collectors are finding themselves faced with a veritable cornucopia of high quality products to choose from. From modern military to Greek mythology to the Old West, there seems to be something for everyone. So what makes the Animal Warriors of the Kingdom unique? What reason could I possibly give to persuade action figure collectors to support this project in its final two weeks?
I won’t give you one. I’ll give you:
Five Reasons to Support Animal Warriors of the Kingdom.
Sure, the core focus of Joe Con 2016 is firmly centered on the G.I. Joe brand but over the past few years there have been several new exhibitors who have been attracting quite a bit of attention. From Marauder Gun-Runners to Boss Fight Studio, third party toy companies have been steadily making inroads with the 1:18 scale crowd and this year is no exception. Case in point: Spero Studios’ Animal Warriors of the Kingdom!
On display this weekend at the Broken Arrow Toys booth (run by a good friend of JBL), Spero Studios has been unveiling test shots and production samples from their forthcoming Animal Warriors of the Kingdom line that is currently funding on Kickstarter. (HINT!) Today, just an hour or so before the Hasbro panel was scheduled to begin, they unveiled some of the next series: the BIG APES!!!
Seriously– my primate-fascinated mind cannot begin to describe how awesome these are! I’m already picturing where I can put these guys on my shelves– somewhere down from Captain Simian & the Space Monkeys but not too close to the Planet of the Apes!
In addition, the production samples for the entire first series were also on display! If you’re at the event and you’re on the fence as to whether you’d like to support the Animal Warriors of the Kingdom Kickstarter, stop on by the Broken Arrow Toys booth and check’em out!