cloverfield

Cloverfield monster by Hasbro Direct Sales

More images on our Flickr at http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragingnerdgasm/sets/72157629899207392/with/7271129160/ .

Cloverfield, released back in January of 2008, was a shitty sci-fi monster movie that could have been so much better. Shot al’a Blair Witch style, a group of friends are present to witness first hand (with their handy-cam) the destruction of New York by an beast of unknown origins. Shakey cam movies belong in the trash, they are a nauseating display of what can be done when you barely have enough money to distribute the film let alone produce it. Anyways, the film follows this group of friends as their farewell party for their buddy gets rudely interrupted by a disembodied head of the Statue of Liberty. Lots of mayhem ensues, people die, billions of dollars in property damage is done and the United States government decides to nuke New York four years prior to the Avengers movie. Outside of the shakey cam I was OK with most of the movie up to the point of nuking New York, I’m fairly sure there’s rules against dropping nukes on US soil. The movie had the potential to be great with a great director, SFX company and production company on board with a heck of a monster design. Why they went in the direction they did will forever be a mystery to me.

2008 was a strange year for me personally. I abruptly ended a job that I had been working for over a decade, spent a good portion of the year unemployed, lost some friends, broke up with a long term girlfriend, made new friends and sold off a portion of my collection to get by. I know plenty of people who sell part of their collection when times are tough but when I look at having to part with things I like, I look at it as maybe a good time to simplify my life and just sell off everything outside of a few key pieces. That summer I blew through about half of my collection by setting up at shows. I made good money and paid bills that would have gone unpaid but the feeling of being responsible didn’t help the fact that I lost some cool things in the process. Things can be replaced and this is how that story goes.

(more pictures of this and more toys on our Flickr account)

I had earlier in 2008 ordered the Cloverfield monster from Hasbro’s online shop. This was rare for me because #1) it was expensive #2) I didn’t even like the movie that much #3) it was a pre-order. I rare;y if never do a pre-order for more than $30, there’s something about someone having control of over $100 of my money without any warning whatsoever. Anyways, in between all my personal tragedies, this behemoth shows up at my front door and suddenly my bank account is damn near empty. I had totally forgotten about the $150 pre-order and I spent a good eight hours just furious with myself and wondering how I could quickly put the money back in my account. Luckily, I guess they just barely produced enough to cover pre-orders and demand was high enough I cleared a decent profit a month later. I felt bad letting go of it, especially seeing other people review the toy online but you can’t pay your rent or electric with a toy.

Several years later I got the chance to replace my dearly departed Cloverfield monster. Not only did I get to replace my Cloverfield but I got it at a cheaper price than I had paid three years earlier. This is one strange monster, I mean for a movie I can’t stand it’s a beautiful piece for anyone who enjoys giant city-stomping monster movies. It’s seriously massive, near 15 inches tall and very wide with a huge arm span. It’s very unique in design, while writing this I tried to look for artist renderings of the creature to see what source material they used since the movie is very vague as to the dimensions. The sculpt is very dynamic and they thought enough ahead of time to include an exchangeable head; one calm and another one enraged and caught in the middle of a roar. The articulation is plentiful but it’s the first generation of ratcheting joints so there is sometimes a little bit of slippage after you get the desired pose.

There’s only really two downsides to the figure. One is the decapitated head of the Statue of Liberty. I know it’s more than likely a cost cutting measure but it’s so small that it really throws the scale of the figure way off, and obscures it even more from the movie. The head of the statue in relation to the hand of the monster literally makes this monster big enough to have swallowed 30 of them with room to spare. The other thing is the nondescript lice that comes with the calm head. It was an interesting trick giving the head a trap door to put the few lice they give you in there but it lacks a way to deploy them without decapitating the monster. I know it’s not a kid’s toy but I’m playing with it and I find this to be a serious flaw and I don’t like it. All in all, it’s a great display piece that hasn’t lost any value since I bought it. It’s still a highly desirable piece that doesn’t show up that often in auctions.

       

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Hordak-Gate: Matty Collector’s biggest scandal so far

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Earlier this week, MattyCollector.com released a figure to the general public that no one in their inner circle even hinted at. The Spirit of Hordak figure has to be, by far, Mattel’s greatest faux pas since the line started just a few years ago. This figure was never formally announced by Mattcollector.com, Toyguru Scott Neitlich (who I think is an incompetent tool who has the charisma of a urinal cake) or any of what Mattel consider’s their inner circle of compensated reviewers (you know who the guilty parties are) . In their defense, Mattel says they hinted the vintage white Horde crossbow on their site for days. But never alluding to the fans, and even worse the subscription holders, that indeed a figure was to be released officially for sale on their website nearly a full 10 days before their next “release date”. I know people have been asking where Raging Nerdgasm stands in the midst of Hordak-Gate, I plan to tell you where we stand within the next paragraph.

(Cherry flavored Hordak)

Firstly, I told you all so. I told you that Mattel was going to screw the fans just as good or even more than years prior. Why? Because the fans hadn’t made a stand against the powers that be. I know that it’s hard when Mattel holds the fate of your collection in their decisive hands but sometimes you have to be strong and make an example. After the plights suffered during 2011’s subscription year, I decided that Raging Nerdgasm wasn’t renewing their contract for 2012 or any lines to come after that. Between backwards or wrong legs on Swiftwind, mailing single figures in envelopes that were padded with what amounted to the consistency of soggy Cherrios, overlooked paint applications and numerous other faults to many to mention in a quick blog; I had made my intentions well known that $20+ figures should be coming out this bad. Marvel Select and Diamond Select figures cost the same and come out flawless, best of all you don’t need a useless subscription to get them all. Don’t even let me bring up the disappointment that is “cottage” Greyskull. It’s small and those who pre-ordered feel cheated as hell. And don’t let this article be misunderstood, the work of the sculpting team behind the line is superb and not buying the line does hurt me because I’ve always admired the work of the 4 Horsemen studios. I just have to get my fix of their work through their direct sales from their personal website. I just refuse to support a Mattel line when they treat their fans so poorly.

(To some, it’s just a shitty repaint. To completists, this is the bane of their existence.)

Some have claimed that Mattel’s actions with the Spirit of Hordak constitute a breach of contract with the subscription. Normally, I’d be behind you rebel rousers but, it does state in your agreement that Mattel reserves the right to change anything they wish whenever they choose (maybe not in those specific words but trust me, I’ve got 3 semesters of business law under my belt.). Not the exalted Toyguru himself nor any of Mattel’s other toadies have stepped forward during this moment of fans screaming out for blood. If you noticed already, other sites out there haven’t issued a statement siding with Mattel or the fans. But, Raging Nerdgasm is willing to take a side. We stand on the side of the fans shafted in this heinous moment of fuckery. But what can you do? You can’t cancel your subscription, right?

(Exhibit A: The scene of the crime)

You can cancel your credit/debit cards filed with MattyCollector.com, you just need to go through the respective banks. You won’t get the rest of the year’s offerings but if you’re mad enough to quit, it’s a good way to bow out. If you are addicted, and I know that feeling, but still feel butthurt you can post on the MattyCollector.com forums about how angry you are and how you won’t let this insult go unanswered. Let your anger be known across the internet; maybe they’ll re-release the toy, maybe they’ll make amends with the fans by the year’s end or maybe when it comes time to throw down on 2014’s subscription you can opt out and claim a lack in confidence in both Mattel and their paid spokespersons.

an added bonus, from Vikor on the MattyCollector,com forum before it was deleted it seems

===UPDATE on Spirit Of Hordak Random Release===

TG address the Spirit of Horak issue……………………….

Vikor wrote on the Matty Forum:

Toyguru,

This is what subscribers were promised:

quote:

Early Access to Non-Subscription Products: In 2013, all Club subscribers get early access to all non-subscription products, regardless of brand! That means you’ll have the chance to purchase hot items not available through subscriptions before non-subscribers, like 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises 8” Batman™ figure and the Ghostbusters™ PKE Meter prop replica. Availability is first-come, first-served, so if products sell out to subscribers during the early access period, that’s it – no additional product will be made available to non-subscribers at that time. 


Your Spirit of Hordak stunt has clearly violated the terms of the contract that was entered into when we purchased subscriptions. There was no clause saying Mattel reserved the right to sell “surprise” items to anyone prior to and outside of Early Access.

I think you should get in touch with your legal department, because you’ve just shot yourself in the foot. People are extremely angry about this and while scalpers are exploiting multiple fans on eBay, you remain silent. How utterly irresponsible. I am inclined to cancel my subscription at this point citing breach of contract, and I know I’m not alone. I suggest you make Spirit of Hordak available IMMEDIATELY to all subscription holders via Early Access as was promised. In the meantime I will be lodging a complaint with the Better Business Bureau.
This message has been edited. Last edited by: Vikor, May 09, 2013 09:50 AM



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