Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Toy Fair 2012 Exclusive

A few weeks ago at the 2012 New York International Toy Fair, Playmates revealed their full line of new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles action figures, playsets and vehicles to a select number of people who had to RSVP for the event. When guests entered the screening room they were handed a bright green tote bag containing a variety of goodies including a randomly selected Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Toy Fair 2012 exclusive action figure. Earlier, Dan Eardley gave us an in-depth look at his exclusive Mikey figure. You can check out the video here! I, however, was able to get my favorite of the Heros in a Half Shell, Donatello!

These figures are amazing and the show is going to be even better! The new style finally gives each of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles their own personalities in regards to their bodies and proportions. Donatello is the tallest and thinest, Mikey certainly embodies the young youth, Raphael is built like a football player and Leo is a lean, mean fighting machine!

They also have varying lengths of masks with Mikeys being the shortest and Donnie the longest. I love this new approach to the Turtles because each of the figures have sculpts unique to the characters. No more using the same tool across multiple characters; each of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has very distinct differences including little toe prints under the foot.

Each of these Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Toy Fair 2012 exclusive action figures come inside a full color bag depicting all four of the brothers with new show logo. Un-boxing Donatello reveals a vacuum formed/flocked velvet enclosure to hold the figure.

This is the most detailed and articulated action figure I have ever seen Playmates produce! I like to think of these 2012 Toy Fair figures as the middle stage. We had first seen obviously plused up prototype photos with lots of dry brushing and wipes.

These figures do have some extra deco like a different color grip on the bo staff and some texture brushing on the limbs but not nearly as much as the prototypes.

And then there is the retail versions of these figures that won't have nearly as much deco as the previous two versions but will have the same high level of sculpted detailing. I really like the shell on the front of the figure because it is molded out of a flexible PVC allowing it to bend when the legs are positioned.

The belt and Bo Staff holster are one solid assembly fit to conform around the shell of Donatello. I remember early conversations with Playmates where they were debating on whether or not to deco the pupils of the Turtles. At the end of the day they decided to keep it OG and go with the solid white eyes as seen in the original figures as well as the comic series.

I can't wait for this new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles sereis from Nickelodeon to start up this fall but I'm even more excited that I can get the rest of the TMNT toys this August!

For all the lastest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles news as reported from inside the walls of Nickelodeon be sure to check out the TMNTmaster on Twitter. Also for detailed coverage of all things TMNT, you can always check out Ninja Pizza and GO GREEN MACHINE. If your looking to see the ultimiate list of updates for IDW's new TMNT comic series, please refer to Rich's TMNT Ninja Turtles Blog. "God, I love being a Turtle!"

The World's Greatest Beer - Trappist Brew Taste Test

Many things claim to be the world's best or greatest, but for the most part they don't live up to their moniker. Westvleteren 12, however, truly is the world's greatest beer. The Westvleteren Brewery was founded in MDCCCXXXVIII (1838). The Trappist Abbey of Saint Sixtus of Westvleteren in the Belgian municipality of Vleteren in Germany is where the headquarters are located and the Trappist monks from the Catsberg monastery (located in France and founded the St Sixtus monastery in 1831) still brew the beer to this day. In order to qualify as a Trappist beer there are three key components.

#1 - The beer must be brewed within the walls of a Trappist abbey, by or under control of Trappist monks.

#2 - The brewery, the choices of brewing, and the commercial orientations must obviously depend on the monastic community.

#3 - The economic purpose of the brewery must be directed toward assistance and not toward financial profit.

Trappist breweries are constantly monitored to assure the irreproachable quality of their beers. Out of the 174 Trappist monasteries worldwide, only 7 are deemed worthy enough to have the Authentic Trappist Product logo that indicates a compliance to the various rules of the International Trappist Association. Yes, the International Trappist Association.

It's not easy to obtain a bottle of this Trappist brew as the rules are strict. In the States you have to look to the Black/Grey markets. Over seas not only do you have to order ahead of time by telephone, but your limited to the amount of Westvleteren your able to get. De Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren will take down all of your information including local licence plate number in order to keep you from getting more within the allotted window. Good thing you can get 4 cases at a time per 60 days. When @DOINAGREATJOB told me he had procured a bottle of Westvleteren 12 (a 10.2% ABV introduced in 1940) I knew I was going to instantly want more!

When we popped open the cap I shit you not it smelled like a freshly baked loaf of bread with a mix of plums, raisins and figs. It pours out a dark, murky, reddish- brown color with some yeast sediment swirling around the glass. The taste is incredible! The flavor is not what I expected at first, though I think that owes to just how fresh this bottle is. An older bottle will be more developed than this.

Each bottle cap is stamped with a best before date that really serves as its vintage year. A bottle of this Trappist beer from 1972 has recently sold on eBay for $200.

Once we finished the bottle I immediately broke open my stash of Chimay Rouge Première. Like Westvleteren 12, it too is a Trappist beer (only this one can be found at most party-liquor stores and bars here in SoCal.) The brewery was founded inside Scourmont Abbey, in the Belgian municipality of Chimay in 1862 and not only do they make beer but they also have choice cheeses that are custom aged to perfection.

At this point of the evening I am drunkenly and incoherently rambling about plans for a trip to Europe visiting all of the monasteries and obtaining case after case of the World's Greatest Beer.


DMC x KidRobot - Back to the Future Labbit Custom

Anybody who knows me, knows that when it comes to Back to the Future I'm crazy.. Everything from designing my own Back to the Future 2 Hover Board Skate Deck to creating a custom pair of Nike Mag 2015 kicks before Nike ever did tells me that I have seen these movies way too many times. In fact, I would even go as far as saying that I have seen the Back to the Future Trilogy more times than I've seen the Star Wars Trilogy! (Yes, trilogy) And this is coming from the guy who made an AT-AT Coin-Op Ride that looks like you would find it outside of some seedy bodega on Pico & Sepulveda.

I wanted to create my own version of the Back to the Future Time Machine with a bit of a twist. The Kidrobot Labbit makes for a good car because of it's shape. I hadn't put together a KidRobot custom in a year or so and decided it was time to dive right in on this project. Not only did I want to splice the Frank Kozik Labbit with the DeLorean, but I also wanted to have the figure light-up and make sounds. Not only does it have a tiny Flux Capacitor but I have re-designed the Time Machine so it now runs on Frank Kozik Liquid Labbit nicotine instead of the bio-degradable Mr. Fusion fuel.

Later this week you will be able to see this piece in person on display up at the KidRobot LA location on Melrose.