On Sale This Week: Mr. Fusion, Dragon Age and Buddy Christ!

It’s another big week for Diamond Select Toys at your local comic shop, as eight new items are shipping to stores! Not only are there new Minimates from Dragon Age, Avengers: Age of Ultron and Classic X-Men comics, there are new busts from Sin City and the Batman Classic TV Series, a plush Buddy Christ, a Godzilla pizza cutter and our long-awaited Mr. Fusion prop replica! There’s something for every collector and every fan in stores this week from DST! Find your nearest comic shop at comicshoplocator.com, or order at diamondselecttoys.com!


Back to the Future 2 Mr. Fusion Electronic Prop Replica
A Diamond Select Toys Release! It’s almost 2015, which means we’re only months away from inventing Mr. Fusion, the device that turns garbage into energy! Arguably the biggest technological leap between the 1985 we saw in Back to the Future and the 2015 we saw in Back to the Future II, the Mr. Fusion Home Energy Reactor is now a realistically scaled 18″ electronic replica from Diamond Select Toys, complete with a sound effect to let you know that the sealed processing unit has been opened and is ready to process household waste into 1.21 gigawatts of energy! Runs on included batteries. (Item #OCT142188, SRP: $399.99)



Batman Classic TV Series Penguin Resin Bust
A Diamond Select Toys release! Batman’s rogues gallery continues to grow as the Penguin joins the Riddler and the Joker in DST’s line of busts based on the Batman Classic TV Series! This 6-inch-tall resin bust captures Burgess Meredith as fowl fiend, wielding a deadly umbrella and an equally deadly sneer. Bust sits atop a colorful base inspired by the show’s animated opening credits, and comes packaged in a full-color box. Designed by Barry Bradfield! Sculpted by Jean St. Jean!


(Item #DEC142214, SRP: $59.99)
Dragon Age Minimates Series 1 Box Set
A Diamond Select Toys release! On your next Dragon Age quest, why not keep your companions in your pocket? The legendary video game series kicks off an epic line of Minimates with this debut four-pack featuring the Grey Warden Alistair; the bard, Leliana; dwarf rogue Varric Tethras (with Bianca); and Morrigan, Witch of the Wilds. Each 2-inch Minimate mini-figure features 10-14 points of articulation and interchangeable parts. Packaged on a blister card. (Item #DEC142215, SRP: $19.99)


Godzilla 2000 Sculpted Pizza Cutter
A Diamond Select Toys release! Destroy all toppings! A monstrous hunger requires a monstrous slice, and you can cut yourself off a big one with this palm-sized pizza cutter featuring the sculpted face of Godzilla, King of the Monsters. Based on his appearance in “Godzilla 2000,” this menacing utensil will cut a path through a deep-dish pie like Godilla cuts a path through Tokyo! Packaged in a full-color box. (Item #DEC142216, SRP: $14.99)


A Diamond Select Toys release! For a movie as big as “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” one assortment is not enough! This colorful countertop display holds 18 individually blind-bagged Minimates based on the movie, including multiple types of Ultrons, Iron Man’s Iron Legion, plus one-per-case Minimates of Baron Strucker and Nick Fury! Every bag contains one 2-inch Minimate mini-figure, featuring 14 points of articulation and interchangeable parts. (Item #DEC142220, SRP: $5.99/ea.)


A Diamond Select Release! Some of the X-Men’s most memorable costumes and memorable foes return in this all-new assortment of Marvel Minimates! Exclusively available through Previews, this assortment has the X-Men’s Strike Force team (as seen in Uncanny X-Men #275) take on that era’s Brotherhood of Mutants, a.k.a. Freedom Force! Plus each two pack of 2-inch Minimates includes bonus parts to create an alternate X-Men character! The two-packs include Wolverine (with Forge parts) vs. Blob, Banshee (with Gambit parts) vs. Pyro, Storm (with Psylocke parts) vs. Avalanche, and a short-packed, one-per-case two-pack of Jubilee vs. Destiny! Each two-pack is packaged in a full-color window box. Designed by Art Asylum!  (Item #NOV142181, SRP: $9.99/two-pack)



A Diamond Select Toys release! From the films of Kevin Smith, it’s the most marketable religious icon of all! Buddy Christ is a friend who is always willing to hear your problems, and now he’s also super-cuddly! This 8″ tall plush doll features finely stitched details, is made out of soft plush material, and will fit anywhere you want him to go, including your backpack. Wherever you go, he’s gonna go! Comes packaged in a clear polybag. (Item #OCT142187, SRP: $19.99)

A Diamond Select Toys release! Sin City is no place for the soft or weak. Luckily, Marv is as hard as they come! We made this collectible 6″ bust of Marv out of high-quality resin, so he and his gun Gladys will blend into your bust collection, no matter how tough a crowd it is. Set into a rocky base, he’ll stand guard on your shelf. your desk or even the bar at Kadie’s Club Pecos! Sculpted by Jean St. Jean. Limited to 1,000 pieces. Comes packaged in a full-color box. (Item #NOV142178, SRP: $59.99)


Bluntman and chronic return to SDCC


Look, up in the sky, it’s Bluntman and Chronic! The comic-book heroes created by director Kevin Smith are living the high life, with a variety of products coming out from Diamond Select Toys based on their appearances in “Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back.” Now, they’re getting a Comic-Con-exclusive 2-pack of Minimates mini-figures, only available through Toys “R” Us, and it’s based on their comic book appearances!


With new facial expressions and paint schemes that reflect the costumes worn in their now-classic comic book mini-series, Bluntman and Chronic each stand 2 inches tall with 14 points of articulation and a variety of interchangeable parts. The two-pack comes packaged on a blister card, and will be available through the Entertainment Earth booth, #2343, at a price of $10. This set is guaranteed to move fast, so be sure to stop by early!




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New Jersey’s baby boy is now a Minimate

It is no secret that I am a huge Kevin Smith mark. I even write an article where I compare Silent Bob to Alley Sheedy#s character from the breakfast club.

So it is with great honor to say that MiniMates forward this amazing press release to us.

Read below

When a new Minimates toy line is born, it’s a special time for everybody. So Diamond Select Toys is going to give birth at the most special time of all! A new line of Minimates is debuting at this year’s Comic-Con International in San Diego, and it’s from the cinematic world of Kevin Smith!

The first exclusive two-pack includes Jay and Silent Bob in black-and-white, just as they appeared in Smith’s groundbreaking debut film, Clerks. Future sets will be in black and white as well as full-color, and will be based on all of the View Askew universe films: Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Clerks 2 and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back! Each Minimate mini-figure stands approximately 2 inches tall, with interchangeable parts and accessories.

The set will be available at the Diamond Select Toys booth, #2607, at a price of $10. Comic-Con International runs from Thursday, July 18 to Sunday July 21, with a Preview night on Wednesday.


I can’t wait to review these guys and the rest of the series!

Review- The Bionic Man

By Edward Gambichler

“Steve Austin…astronaut….a man barely alive..

Gentleman…..we can rebuild him.

We have the technology.

We have the capability to make the world’s first bionic man.

Steve Austin….will BE that man.

Better than he was before.


Oscar Goldman, Director of OSI


No matter how many shows I’ve watched since the cancellation of “The Six Million Dollar Man” back in 1978…..there has never been another television series with an intro that gripping or that awesome. Based on the Martin Caidan novel “Cyborg”, it tells the story of test pilot Steve Austin who was seriously injured when the space capsule he was piloting, crashes on re-entry. Losing both legs, his right arm, and his left eye, he is given a second chance by the Office of Scientific Intelligence and its director, Oscar Goldman ( Steve’s best friend ). Through the miracle of advanced technology, scientists, headed by Dr. Rudy Wells, replace Austin’s damage limbs with cybernetic prosthetics which give him abilities far beyond norman men.

I can honestly say that Steve Austin and the actor that portrayed him, Lee Majors, was my first major male role model. I used to watch the show religiously, even when it jumped the shark by having Steve Austin team up with Bigfoot in a few episodes and had actress Sandy Duncan       ( Broadway’s Peter Pan ) playing……an alien. Hell, I even had the 12 inch Steve Austin action figure with the rubber skinned arm you could roll up to pop out his bionic chip and a viewfinder in the back of his head to see through his “bionic” eye. Between this doll and my rev up Evel Knievel motorcycle jumper……I was in XY Chromosome Heaven.

The pilot episode spawned a five season T.V. series, a “Bionic Woman” series ( with Steve’s amnesiac fiance Jamie Sommers ) two T.V. movies ( one starring a young Sandra Bullock ) and now……a comic series. Produced by Dynamite Entertainment and titled “The Bionic Man”, it is based on a story by writer-director Kevin Smith ( Clerks ) and co-scripted by his Green Arrow collaborator writer-artist Phil Hester. I’m now four issues in and I have to say I like this modern reboot. It hits all the right notes as far as my nostalgia for the show is concerned and the explanation behind the bionics procedure is thorough and scientifically sound.

All the main characters, Austin, Goldman, and Dr. Wells feel right in both look and tone. The difference this time around is the black ops edge given to the O.S.I. It is a marked departure from the public government office depicted in the show. The main villain, the cyborg Hull, has an ominous connection to O.S.I. and the early stages of the bionic program and he is set up as real lethal threat. Make no mistake. This is not a Fembot Austin will have to deal with. On a lighter note, issue number four features a hospital visit by an old character from the Bionic series canon and the retconning of his origin is brilliant. The artwork by penciller Jonathan Lau is detailed and lush and the covers by Alex Ross are nothing less than perfection. The only question I have is if Kevin Smith is actually currently involved with this title or just given story credit and lending his name to the project. Much of the technical jargon in the description of the bionic procedure is not something I could see Smith coming up with and I wonder how much of the writing is Smith and how much is Hester.


Red State: Review

Red State: by Edward Gambichler


“You better believe I fear God…..” – Pastor Abin Cooper ( Michael Parks )


One of the great obstacles in trying to compose this review of Red State is to try to encompass its director Kevin Smith’s film career. Yes, I could take the easy way out and compare him to the list of the early 90’s self financed writer-auteurs like Quentin Tarantino, Robert Rodriguez, and Richard Linklater ( whose movie, Slacker, served as an inspiration to Smith’s choice of being a filmmaker ). There are certainly similarities in each of their works: emphasis on dialogue over action, self aware sense of pop culture, and themes and subject matter that do not fit into a Hollywood formula ( such as a rom-com, or action “blockbuster”. What separates Kevin Smith’s career from the aforementioned filmmakers is that the majority of his films ( with the exception of Jersey Girl, Cop Out, Zack and Miri Make a Porno and Red State ) have an underlying shared universe of characters between it. Five of his films ( Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma and Clerks 2 ) take place in this shared universe, known to Smith fans as the” Viewaskewniverse”. As a major fan of Smith’s films , myself, I can understand the loyal following these films have acquired ( due largely to his hilariously insightful dialogue ). And Smith, in his own right, has transcended his movies and become somewhat of a public figure ( whose personal appearances and speaking engagements usually play to sold out crowds ). He’s also regarded as an ambassador of sorts to comic book fandom ( as the subject of comics is frequent fodder for his movies ). Although he is to be commended for wearing this many hats, there exists the possibility that Smith has found too specific a “niche” in regards to his filmmaking and and there seems to be a reluctance for the audience to embrace an effort like Red State.

The film is set in an unnamed town in the Midwest. It is the story of three friends: Travis , Jared, and Bill Ray ( played respectively by actors Michael Angarano, Kyle Gallner, and Nicholas Braun ). Like most high school teenagers, most of their energy is spent on devising ways to get laid. Jared ( as a result of this effort ) comes across a Craig’s List type of ad posted by a local woman, looking to engage in a “threesome”. The boys set out in Travis’ parent’s car to a trailer camp where supposedly the woman resides. There, they are met by Sarah Cooper ( played by Oscar-winner Melissa Leo, The Fighter ). Before they proceed to get on with the threesome, Sarah offers them a few beers, stating that the alcohol would help her “get up” to the sex. Unfortunately, as they start to get undressed, the boys realize too late that their beers have been spiked with a tranquilizer and they lose consciousness. Jared awakens to find out that he is trapped in a dog cage near the altar of a chapel. Above him he sees another horrified man, strapped to a cross and covered in Saran Wrap. He realizes that he is in the middle of a sermon being delivered by Pastor Abin Cooper ( played by the incomparable Michael Parks ). Cooper is the leader of the Five Points Church, an extreme right-wing religious sect whose views revolve around what they perceive as an end of the world apocalypse known as “the rapture”. They not only rejoice in their eventual  passing over to the afterlife, but the fiery demise of those groups they deem hellbound ( such as homosexuals , adulterers, and “sexual deviants” ). As a matter of fact, hours before their confinement, Jared encounters Pastor Cooper and the Church picketing the funeral of a murdered young homosexual. The congregation is made up Cooper’s immediate family and their spouses and children, including Sarah. As Cooper’s hate filled sermon reaches its crescendo, his followers shoot the cross bound man ( who it turns out is a homosexual ) and dump his body in a trapdoor where Jared and Billy Ray are kept. Terrified at what they are witnessing, the boys try desperately to free themselves from their predicament. Unfortunately for them, the situation escalates when one of the family members is forced to kill a deputy who has stopped by to question the Pastor of an earlier sideswiping incident involving Travis’ parents car and the Sheriff’s vehicle. The Pastor, using evidence of a homosexual affair as leverage, tries to deter the married Sheriff ( played by actor Stephen Root, Office Space ) from investigating further. However, the Sheriff calls in the ATF and its head agent Joseph Keenan ( played by the always dependable John Goodman of The Big Lebowski and T.V.’s Roseanne ) in the hopes of having their task force take out Cooper and the entire Family. Between the blind and unyielding devotion of the fully armed congregation and the stressed out and equally strapped ATF unit, the lives of the three boys hangs in the balance.


I’d have to say without a doubt that this is Kevin Smith’s  most polished looking film to date. He effectively uses shaky cam film techniques to convey the brutally unpredictable violence in the film. Also, his use of closeups on his various actors, especially with the brilliant Michael Parks, heightens the natural claustrophobia of the scene. You feel like you’re trapped right along with Jared in the dog cage.

This is Smith’s attempt at making a horror film and his choice of a villain is inspired. The threat does not come from an machete wielding indestructible man wearing a hockey mask that skirts our sense of reality, but a threat that jumps right off the front page of our early morning paper. There is nothing more frightening than the commonplace and the evil that lurks in our own backyards. With the examples of Ruby Ridge, Waco Texas, the Unibomber, and Timothy McVeigh as basis for the subject matter, Smith demonstrates that sometimes the most terrorizing thing in this world is how far some people will go just because they “believe” in something. It’s a mindset that he has become familiar with due to the various church groups who took part in picketing his fourth film, Dogma. With this film, Smith has also taken the unconventional step and distributed it himself ( despite the controversy of supposedly reneging on his promise to auction off the movie at Sundance for prospective buyers ). The film toured this past year in multiple cities with Smith himself holding a star studded Q and A session after the screenings ( one in which I had the honor of attending in New York along with  Alternative Mindz’ own Rob Base, his wife Crystal and the rest of the AMZ family). It is now available on Pay Per View on Time Warner Cable and will soon be heading straight to DVD.

Smith hinted that this may be his last film ( citing his bad experiences directing the film Cop Out  as a possible reason ). He was suppose to helm a movie based on the Warren Zevon and Mitch Ablom tune Hit Somebody ( the Hockey Song ) starring Sean William Scott and I hope he does wind up shooting it. It would be a shame for Red State to be his swan song. Unfortunately, the drawback of being the creator of the Viewaskewniverse is that fans have come to associate a particular and more light-hearted tone to his films. Asking him to end things on this film, would be like asking Martin Scorsese to make Cape Fear his last movie. A fine film, but ultimately not the one we want to envison him sailing off into the sunset with.



Silent Bob in the Breakfast Club

Silent Bob in the Breakfast Club

this was posted on www.popculturenetwork.com forums June 1 2010

Many of you here on the PCN forums know me as Rob Base, but what a lot of you may not know is that I have been active in the indie film scene now for the better part of ten years. I am currently working on my second feature film.  What does that have to do with Silent Bob?

Maybe almost nothing, but Kevin Smith has been a huge influence on me as a writer/director.

Watching someone like Kevin make a film about losers and stoners at a convenience store makes me realize that there is an audience looking for more than gun shots and cheap humor.

All this time Kevin talks about how much John Hughes affected him as a filmmaker. I never saw it before until I re-watched the Breakfast Club with my wife this past Memorial Day.

I see all the archetype standards usually seen in a Hughes film. None more so than Allison (Ally Sheedy) as the basket case. The non-verbal-hiding-her-body outcast who follows the others just because she has nothing better to do on her Saturday.

But how is this like Silent Bob? Simple, the first time I notice the similarities was in the running around trying to get to Judd Nelson’s locker before the principal sees them. All of them doing this Scooby Doo inspired dash around the halls. If you have ever seen Jay and Silent Bob Strikes Back, it’s in there as well as in Mallrats.

There is one scene in particular where they are running back and forth and Allison is just leaning against the lockers. If you put a hat on her it’s Silent Bob all the way


As for the wisdom that Silent Bob inflicts every once in a while …i.e. Clerks and Chasing Amy, one has to simply look to the scene where the Club wants Claire (Molly Ringwald) to open up and she won’t or can’t. Then Allison tells her tales of sex and what can only be called abuse by a therapist until Claire confesses.

Granted, the basket case then tells everyone that she was a compulsive liar. But who’s to say Bob isn’t lying. His hetero life mate, Jay, never once seen anything that Bob claims to have done.

But looking back on a simple film like the Breakfast Club and what it represents as a movie and a culture, it is nothing short of amazing and if it’s good enough to inspire Kevin Smith, it’s good enough to be seen by anyone at any time.