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    Check out the photos up above & please be sure to click on them for larger HD versions. This is a special room in my new house. I recently remodeled my basement into a Bat-Cave & I gotta say it looks pretty awesome!! OK, this is NOT my house but a man can dream, right? 

    Basically, it's a Super Batman-Themed Home Movie Theater, or... the Ultimate Man Cave! One nice feature is a Set of Fake Bookcases that slide open by remote to reveal another room next to this one that has a Tumbler Batmobile (Replica) Garage! 

    There are also some some amazing Life-Size Batman Statues, a Bat-Computer Set-Up, Gothic-Style Lighting, Custom Railing with Film Bat-Symbol Logos, and then just look at the screen itself... AMAZING!! Oh man, how much did this cost? LOL!! Now, I'm not really sure what company did all this but they did an incredible job. One thing I can say though is that the special Leather Chairs were supplied by ELITE Home Theater Seating. OK, I'm just going to go cry now.

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  • 08/04/12--10:58: BJ’s talks up holiday toys
  • BJ’s Wholesale Club is looking to get the word out that its stores are now stocked with toys that promise to be among this season’s most popular items. The Westborough-based chain said that toys available at its 192 club stores include Sesame Street Let’s Rock Elmo, I Am T-Pain Auto Tune Mic, and Lego Alien Conquest and Ninjago --- all listed on CNBC’s Hot Holiday Toys List for 2011. BJ’s was ...

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    Matt JOnes makes some spiffy custom Mini-Teas screenshot

    Matt JOnes of Lunartik has been a busy, busy toy artist recently. Not only has he been overseeing the production run of Lunartik Mini series 2 but the Mini-Tea Tour 2012 hit Cambridge just yesterday. And yet, Matt still fits in time to make custom Mini-Tea figures and, I dare say, they are spectacular. Each piece has a rather clever tea-inspired name, too. My two favorites are the fighter plane Tea'ger Shark and the aptly named BATea. Other customs include the pirate Me-Ha-Tea, the super heroic Cup-Pow, and the outer space Oddi'tea. 

    Check out the gallery to see Matt's work and, if you are interested in having a custom of your very own, you are encouraged to email him (his contact information can be found here).

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    No friends? Pick up this Sena from Good Smile! screenshot

    I've made my love for Haganai's Sena absolutely no secret, so seeing any new figure news from one of my favorite ladies in awhile is always a good thing! Thankfully, Mikatan comes through with a great look at Good Smile's upcoming figure, and it looks to suit her perfectly!

    As usual, the art style is replicated near flawlessly, and every bit of Sena that makes Sena, well, Sena, looks perfect. Her butterfly clip is appropriately in place, and her curvy frame definitely looks soft and smooth. I'm a big fan of the series' uniforms as well, and it's definitely been given the same top quality treatment as Sena herself. Even her usual sulky expression is spot-on! You'll be able to make friends with Sena come December, and she'll set you back around ¥6,477.

    [ Pre-order at HobbyLink Japan | Otacute | Hobby Search | AmiAmi | J-List ]

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    It's certainly the dogs days of summer around these parts, with the temperature hovering in the 90's most of the time. It also appears to be "the dog days of Steiff" with this most interesting question from a reader about his blue ribbon family heirloom.  Roger from the UK writes in part...


    I have a pull-along “King Charles’ Spaniel” made by Steiff, which was given to my mother around 1910, in the UK.

    I can give you the following information about him: 
    • No eartag but there is a small hole to the rear of the right ear, near the head.
    • Not jointed and hard stuffed.
    • He is 14 in (36 cm) high on his wheels.
    • He is 5 in (13 cm) wide.
    • He is 14 in (36 cm) long and nose to rear and 21 in (53 cm) nose to tail.
    • He has brown and black glass pupil eyes and a hand embroidered nose and mouth.
    • He is made from mohair and has a leather color with 7 metal raised script ‘STEIFF’ studs.
    • He rides on brass wheels and has a braided pull cord.

    I have only ever seen a picture of a pull-along bear, on similar wheels, so I am very curious to know anything more about ‘Rover’, above. Are you able to help?

    Thank you, Roger"

    Steiffgal just loves it when questions like this roll in!  What Roger has here is not actually a King Charles Spaniel, but a St. BernardAs Roger describes above, this early model is standing, unjointed, and made from mohair.  This is a very popular and beloved turn of last century Steiff design.  He was made in 12, 14, 17, 22, 28, 35, 43, 50, 60, 80, and 99 cm from the 1904 through 1927 time frame.  Items like this are usually measured height wise sans wheels, so this piece is probably the 28 cm size. Depending on the size and date of the example, this model appeared with an open as well as closed mouth, with a voice, on metal or wooden wheels, and with a steering mechanism. Roger's dog has glass eyes, dating him from around 1912 onward, which makes sense with his family's ownership timeline.  The dog's Steiff button studded collar makes him particularly interesting from a collector's perspective. 

    Most collectors would climb every mountain to add this dog - with breed origins in the Italian and Swiss alps - to their Steiff hug. Roger's St. Bernard is the first of its breed to appear in the Steiff catalog. A similar design, but without wheels and made in lamb's wool plush, appeared in the line from 1904 though 1919. In the mid-19-teens, Steiff introduced a puppy St. Bernard to the marketplace; his chubby features, childlike face, and large, floppy paws made him all but irresistible. Made in mohair or lamb's wool plush, he was available through 1927. In 1928, Steiff went back to the drawing board and completely redesigned their standard line St. Bernard - this updated pattern is shown here above. The new model had a much more detailed face, a softer and more rounded muzzle, and playful, innocent presence to it. These design features were common to many new Steiff designs launched in the mid to late 1920's - a very "happy" and innovative time at Steiff. This pattern was produced standing, sitting, on wheels, and as a tail turns head model over time through 1943.

    St. Bernards continued to be a loyal and faithful member of the Steiff pack once the factory reopened for business in the late 1940's post World War II.  A larger mohair riding St. Bernard on wheels - based on the pre-war design - appeared in the line in 43, 50, 60, and 62 cm from 1949 through 1957.   A slightly simplified standing model, also based on the prewar design, was available in 10, 14, and 22 cm from 1953 through 1957.  In the early 1960's, Steiff again updated their standard line St. Bernard and even gave him a name for the first time - Bernie.  Bernie is shown here above.  Bernie was made from mohair and available sitting or standing on all fours.  New Bernie had less prominent facial airbrushing, a chunkier build, and a smaller scale tail; standing Bernie also featured a cask attached to his collar.  Overall, sitting Bernie was produced in 12 and 22 cm from 1963 through 1970 while standing Bernie was made in 22 cm from 1964 through 1966.  From the late 1960's to the present day, St. Bernards have always been a standard feature in the Steiff line, mostly appearing in large size plush models for children's fun and play. 

    Steiffgal hopes this discussion on Steiff's St. Bernard history has come to your rescue at just the right time.  

    Have a question about one of your Steiff treasures? Let's talk! Click here to learn more 

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    Rivet Wars preparing to unleash the monowheel screenshot

    Ted Terranova of Rivet Wars fame is giving us a sneak peek at his next release, which is a very cool-looking monowheel with pilot! As you can see, there's a ton of detail on the machinery and treads, almost as much as you see in the 3-D computer models made for this piece. It's also cool to see the models posted online, giving us a good look at the Rivet Wars piece creation process.

    This one is just a very, very rough prototype, so expect lots of refinement to come, but I'm digging the way it looks. What about you, Tomopeeps?

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    With summertime still in full swing we have some trips still planned. While taking regional family trips by car saves money, it still ads up. Check N’ Go is giving away $150 to help out this summer. Use your twitter account, Facebook, and website to enter to win. You can use it for yourself, a... [Continue Reading]

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    Under the Radar: Big Chief's new Doctor Who figures screenshot

    Last October, we brought you some news about Big Chief Studios and their Eleventh Doctor 1/6-scale figure. It's been a while since we've heard anything about that figure from them, so I set out to check things out and found a few new figures from Big Chief. Oh, and that while there were delays, the Eleventh Doctor should be shipping out in the next few weeks.

    First, as mentioned in the Eleventh Doctor post, Amy Pond is getting a 1/6-scale figure as well. Pond is poseable, features a hand-detailed and authentic costume, and quite a few accessories. You can pre-orderher for £149.99 (£124.99 for non-UK customers because of the British value-added tax). Or, you can get the Signature Edition Pond for £169.99 (£141.66 for non-UK customers) with a a non-refundable deposit of £25 required; it's limited to 250 pieces and comes signed by Karen Gillan. However, because Big Chief isn't satisfied with the body for Pond, she's going to be delayed a bit.

    If that's not your taste, then perhaps the Dynamix Tenth Doctor figure is more your style. On pre-order for £59.99 (£49.99 for non-UK customers), the vinyl statue is a stylized take on David Tennant's turn as the Doctor, featuring him in his trademark attire. Each of the 3,000 pieces in this figure's run comes with a Doctor Who logo base, as well, and I have to say, I like this figure quite a bit!




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  • 08/04/12--16:25: Anime, Comics, and Games

  • "ACG" is a term that is widely used in Chinese speaking countries to refer to Anime, Comic and Games - in particular Japanese anime and otaku culture.
    I've been working with a magazine called OTAQ who publishes ACG contents in their journal which is sold throughout China.

    OTAQ covers anime, manga, games, idols, figures and a lot of dolls too - especially ones belonging to owners!

    The past two volumes have come with DVD's which have the entire season 2 of Culture Japan. I'll also be regularly writing for the journal. Volume 2 of OTAQ features my work and Volume 3 features Culture Japan Night in Tokyo.

    Are there decent anime/otaku journals in your neck of the woods? If not maybe we can work together on making one! Lemme know what ideas you have.

    About Mascots Subscribe by Email Twitter Facebook

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    I've been working with Good Smile Company for many years now and watched them continue to grow so much that I've also witnessed them move 4 times!
    This time however, they have moved to somewhere pretty amazing - to the Tokyo Sky Tree East Tower!

    Arriving at Oshiage station which has been renamed to Oshiage (Sky Tree) on the Hanzomon line.

    Tokyo Sky Tree East Tower next to its counterpart which is currently the tallest building in the world at 634 meters.

    Love the font in the elevators ^^;

    At the entrance of Good Smile Company which is shared with Max factory, Good Smile Racing, Phat and Culture Japan.
    Damn, what am I saying?!

    Lively entrance filled with congrats flowers.

    Yes - Good Smile Company now make toilet paper too! Who wants some?

    Now that is a cool idea - Ita bonnet in the office!

    A planetarium below.

    I've not been up the Tokyo Sky Tree yet - I hear the queues to get up are horrendous - and that is *after* reservations.

    Something Miku in the office...

    ...which is being scrutinized by the top folks at GSC including the big boss Aki Takanori next to me.

    Time to go wandering around the offices. Good Smile take up the entire 17th floor. This is just one of the rooms where the sculpting goes on.

    Here is where all the 3D work goes on. The Itasha that will come with the Mirai Nendoroid was created by this team.

    This is where all the painting goes on. Before, sculpting, painting and 3D modeling used to be in one room.

    Meeting time and business card exchange. Business cards must be handed over in the appropriate manner. If you dont know how then learn. I've seen so many foreigners hand over their business card upside down which is very very bad manners and pretty much decides the outcome for the rest of the meeting. Learn meishi manners if you want to do business well with Japanese folks!

    Today we are meeting about Mirai Nendoroid, the GSC website (which we make) and 5 million Facebook fans.

    The views of Tokyo from here are gorgeous.

    Can you recognize who drew this?

    Gorgeous artwork by Huke-sensei.

    Main office area.

    Tokyo Sky Tree by night.

    This is the Shacho Shitsu [社長室[しゃちょうしつ]] or "Big Boss Room."

    Time to peek at the shelves belonging to the other staff members.
    Do you display figures/dolls at work or school?

    One of the web team members who I work with.

    She likes everything pink!

    This DOM belongs to the guy doing the project management for Mirai Nendoroid.

    A sign of things to come...

    Hmmmm. Whats that on the desk?!

    I have a desk at Production IG and it looks like I have a desk here too!

    Heading back to base.

    We got anime ads on the trains.

    Changing for the Mita line.

    Arrival back at my local station Musashikoyama.

    Time to look for some dinner.

    This evenings dindins!

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    Hoohobbers dedication to superiority in workmanship and quality is apparent in their line of kid’s sleeping bags. Each and every girl’s sleeping bag is styled and sewn by Hoohobbers. These are not imported and are proudly made in the USA. They are made of outstanding quality and sewn in fun and beautiful fabrics that are [...]

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    TMNT One-Hour Event To Debut September 29 On Nickelodeon

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    It is pretty dang close to impossible to avoid giving your child your phone every now and again. It keeps them happy, quiet, and entertained-let’s be honest, all things that sometimes parents need. While I am no proponent of plopping your kid in front of a screen all day every day, I do think it [...]

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    In an unprecedented move by Mattel they were able to get a statement out of Digital River about improving their customer service and delivery along with the 2013 subscriptions: Please Read: A special message about your experience from Digital River Dear Customers, The Digital River Team has heard you loud and clear and [...]

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    Come on DCUC and MOTUC fans!  You’ve got just ONE LAST DAY, ONE LAST chance to keep these lines we live alive and running.  Buy a sub today on  Scott has one last pitch video for you for the subs - Get a close-up look at the long-awaited, fan-demanded Ram Man. Plus, Toy Guru [...]

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      Club Black Freighter is in full effect! Only 1 more day to sign up on to get all 6 of Mattel’s comic styled Watchmen figures, one new figure approx every other month throughout 2013! And all of these figures will come on an AMAZING Watchmen package based on the Absolute Watchmen box. Frank [...]

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    On the eve of the last day to sign up for Mattel’s 2013 subscriptions, and in an attempt to  Save DCUC  we bring you a quick look at the last wave of DC Universe Classics at retail – Wave 21.   This wave very much represents the sort of thing we will be getting a [...]

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    Looking at the online previews on, I could not help but be impressed with Michelle Valigura's inspired pieces for her show 'Bandimals', with a more obvious visual character depiction and a delightfully whimsical aesthetic - they seem more approachable this round, IMHO. Well, they are after all playing musical instruments in a 'band', aren;t they? Heh. 'Bandimals' opens August 3rd

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    Featuring a series of painted canvases, "Tough Enough" by Amanda Visell @ Rotofugi opens August 3rd and exhibits thru September 2nd, with most of the pop-culture inspired pieces being snapped up already thus far, including the below shown E.T., and Kool-Aid Man - proof of the power of popular culture combined with the style/skill of Visell is indeed potent! Peep more images online via

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