Nine Years

Behold, the end of year nine.  Well, this lead-in’s certainly an easier one to write than last year’s, so it’s got that going for it.  In my last annual wrap-up, I talked a lot about how hard the site’s eighth year was for me.  This year was also a year full of a lot of change, but I dare say it was a far more positive change this time around.  However, it’s a year that’s granted me a lot of new perspectives, especially as I wrapped up my 20s and moved into my 30s.  There are a lot more moving parts behind the scenes than there used to be, but I also feel like there’s sort of a direction amongst all the chaos.  And part of that direction is keeping things going around here, as I move into my tenth year with the site.  That’s a big one.  But, I’m not there just yet, now am I?  So, let’s focus on year nine for a bit.

Over the course of the last 365 days, I’ve written just over 200,000 words about 329 figures and 2 vehicles.  I’m down on the raw figure numbers due to that whole “not publishing on weekends” thing I decided I just *had* to implement back in January, but I’m still quite wordy.  Dare I say, wordier?  I’ve got those extra two days a week to channel into the remaining five reviews.

This year, the site’s views moved their way up to a cumulative total of over 628,000, roughly 148,000 of those coming from the last 365 days, and continuing to increase from the already heightened stats of the three prior years.  I picked up 15 more followers, bringing the total to a resounding 292.   I had 67 comments, excluding those made by myself.

Let’s talk about the make-up of this year’s reviews.  Breaking it down by franchises, Marvel is still on top with 127 reviews,  Star Wars is less than half of that at 51, and DC tails behind with 22. Looking at the toy lines proper, Marvel Legends maintains its spot at the top with an even 100 reviews, followed by a huge gap and then The Black Series at 25, and then Minimates wrap things up with 12, holding the third spot by an increasingly narrow margin .  By virtue of being the primary manufacturer of the top two entries in both of the last two categories, Hasbro once more takes the number one spot for manufacturers, with 171 reviews, more than half my total.  Second place is 155 reviews behind, and not even in business anymore, as it’s Toy Biz with 16. Mattel finally gets back on the board with 15 reviews.  As of today, I have reviewed 64.8% of my collection, up 2% from last year.

Last year, I opted not to focus in on my favorite reviews, due to still finding my clarity and focus.  A year removed, I’m feeling a little more balanced, so I’m going to give picking out some of my favorites a try again.  So, let’s see what really stuck with me.


This guy’s quite possibly the closest I’ve ever cut it on one of these lists.  I don’t tend to like to go for something this recent, but it’s hard not to when the figure turns out this well.  Amazing Fantasy Spider-Man is far and away the best Legends Spider-Man available, by all my metrics at least.  The marriage of form and posing on this guy is just so hard to beat.


These guys snuck up on me.  I mean, it’s Hasbro, so there’s always this kind of high threshold for quality, but I don’t think I was expecting to be *this* happy with these figures.  I loved getting the do the photoshop job for putting the whole band together, and I’m genuinely excited by the prospect of getting to assemble them in real-life too!


I’ve been looking for a decent Casey Jones figure for a while, and none of the NECA ones wound up being what I was after.  Super 7’s Ultimates have been on my radar for a bit, but I finally jumped in with Casey, and I’m glad I did.  He’s sold me on Super 7’s Ultimates as a whole, and also made it much harder to say no to more of the Turtles line.


I’ve not held Jada Toys in particularly high esteem previously, but I was intrigued when they announced their Universal Monsters line.  In hand, they’re extremely impressive for a line from a company that’s previously stuck largely to the diecast market.  The Frankenstein’s Monster in particular was the real star of their first batch for me, and he makes me look forward to future offerings.


ThreeZero is a company that’s kind of snuck up on me in the last year and change, and I don’t hate that.  I was quite impressed by their 1/6 Power Rangers, in terms of both execution and pricing.  The Blue Ranger I picked up was a lot more fun than I was expecting from him, and gave me a chance to diversify my interests just a little bit.


#3104:  KNUCKLES

Amongst the changes going on behind the scenes this year was getting a new guest writer in the form of my adoptive son Matthew.  He, his mom, and I went and saw Sonic 2 early in the year, and he and I bought a set of figures together, which he also helped me to review.  Not my usual area of focus, but very definitely a lot of fun.


Speedball is only under the Honorable Mentions section because of the AF Spidey.  Seriously, I considered him a lock, and then I got Spidey in hand, and I realized that he was the more objectively impressive piece.  But, I still very much love Speedball, and he’s my favorite Legend of the year, so I’m still giving him at least *some* recognition.

I would like to once again offer my most sincere thank you to all my faithful readers who have stuck by me through all my crazy ramblings, and to all of those who have joined me along the way.  Here’s to more of that craziness, I suppose!

That’s pretty much it…

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