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LanternCastVIDS Presents: ‘Ringcyclopedia’ #9!

Our Ringcyclopedia takes a look at the brand new BatJeepster Sinestro Corps Movie Ring! Gold-plated brass, with some translucent resin thrown in, makes for a very nice piece in our ring collection!

LanternCastVIDS Presents: ‘Ringcyclopedia’ #8!

We continue our Ringcyclopedia with the Orange Lantern Power Battery and Ring Full-Scale replica! Embrace your inner Larfleeze and hoard this impressive battery for yourself. Mine! Mine! Mine!

LanternCastVIDS Presents: ‘Ringcyclopedia’ #7!

The 1996 Florida Expo rings, each carried an ‘FX’ on one side and a ’96’ on the other. These were given out to dealers at the convention that year in little green bags. You wouldn’t know which ring you go, but there were 3. A gold ring, limited to 12 pieces, and a silver version and a brass version, each limited to 150 pieces. They all had the same green gem stone in the center. Each ring came with a certificate of authenticity with the ring’s number. A few prototypes have surfaced over time, all green rings with no FX or 96 on the sides. The prior year, Florida Expo had given out a similar ring with the Superman logo featured.

LanternCastVIDS Presents: ‘Ringcyclopedia’ #6!

Journey back to the days of yesteryear, as we revisit the 1998 Kyle Rayner style Green Lantern ring. This was the first widely available or mass produced Green Lantern ring by DC and despite how great it looks, it doesn’t really endow the wearer with super powers. Bummer! But it still shines bright in any Green Lantern fan’s heart.

LanternCastVIDS Presents: ‘Ringcyclopedia’ #5!

We continue our Ringcyclopedia with the Blue Lantern Power Battery and Ring Full-Scale replica! All Will Be Well once this piece joins your collection!

Retailing for just under $200.00 (less if you order it on DCBS or Big Bad Toy Store, this replica helps keep the Blue Light of Hope alive, even when things look their bleakest.

LanternCastVIDS Presents: ‘Ringcyclopedia’ #4!

Harness the emotional spectrum by adding this beautiful piece to your collection.

Retailing for just under $200.00, this replica literally shines brighter than all the batteries that have come before!


Brett Ratner’s “Hercules” is a solid if unspectacular swords and sandals epic that rises and falls on the broad shoulders of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. While the movie is slow to develop and the creative decision to attempt to demystify the beginnings and labors of Hercules is questionable, the film does pick up considerable steam in its second half.

Many of the twists in the final act are predictable, though Johnson’s presence is able to still make the experience fun and as believable as possible.  It is also a testament to his popularity and his relentless use of social media that “Hercules” has even been as moderately successful as it has (considering an overall lack of interest in the project by movie-goers).

Dwayne Johnson has proven to be a shot-in-the-arm to many existing franchises, but creating one of his own has thus far been elusive.  “Hercules” is unlikely to change his fortunes anytime soon.

Mark J. Marble

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

If Hollywood wants a blueprint of how to reboot a franchise, they need look no further than Fox’s last two “Planet of the Apes” pictures.  Despite presenting a different way for the Apes to rise to dominance, the new series pays respect to the themes, legacy and heart of the original five films.

Much like its predecessor “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” Dawn is driven by the performance of Andy Serkis as Caesar.  Caesar is such a noble and honorable character that not only is it  almost impossible not to root for him, but you truly want to see more of his story.  As an Ape messiah who was raised by loving humans, he truly is a child of two worlds.

While natural expectations (and marketing) would lead you to believe this was simply going to be another case of the bad human/good ape morality play, the plot itself is a great deal more gray than black and white.  Director Matt Reeves powerfully delivers home the belief that there always is good and evil on both sides of every conflict.

Caesar’s human counterpart is Malcolm, played by Jason Clarke.  He becomes an ally and unexpected friend to the Ape leader, proving that there are still good people left despite the aftermath of devastating war and disease.  The closeness between the two echoes back to the loving and respectful relationship between Caesar and James Franco’s Will in “Rise,” especially in one touching scene towards the end.

While the ending points to a future that we knew was probably unavoidable, the final acceptance of this fact is still a bitter pill for Man, Ape (and movie-goers) to swallow.

With great writing, direction and acting, this classic sci-fi series has been reborn and the next chapter is definitely something I’m looking forward to.

Mark J. Marble

Transformers: Age of Extinction

The expression “Seen one, Seen them all” could have practically been invented to describe Michael Bay’s “Transformers” franchise.  Each film gives you pretty much the same thing: state of the art special effects, explosions, poor screenwriting and mostly uninteresting human characters.

“Transformers: Age of Extinction” takes this formula to the extreme, including in running time as the movie clocks in at nearly 3 hours long.   While Mark Wahlberg is definitely an upgrade from Shia “My Career is Imploding” Labeouf, he isn’t entirely believable as a struggling inventor/ repairman who is barely keeping his head above water.  Still, he’s the only interesting human in the film (at least until Stanley Tucci begins to get more and more screen time).  Tucci is clearly above this material.  He steals the show in the second half of this overly long “epic.”

The plot this time around revolves around a government conspiracy to eliminate ALL Transformers (Autobots & Decepticons) while learning enough about their DNA and power source to create their own homegrown Transformers (which is where Tucci’s character comes into play).  Throw in an alien bounty hunter (Lockdown) for good measure, and you pretty much have it.

The much-hyped Dinobots only appear in the movie’s final hour and they don’t really get to do very much, though they are visually impressive.

How you feel about this film will greatly depend on how much you enjoyed the previous three.  While I’ve never loved any of them, I did think “Dark of the Moon” was the best of the original trilogy.  “Transformers: Age of Extinction” feels like a big step down in the wrong direction though.

Product of the Week: Larfleeze/Glomulus Action League Two-Pack

While not particularly new, I had never seen the Larfleeze Action League figure in person up until a few months ago when I stumbled upon several in the toy aisles of my local Big Lots.

The set features the grand master of greed himself, Larfleeze, clutching his all-precious orange power battery.   He is accompanied by his sometimes partner-in-crime, Glomulus.

The Action League was a very fun series of figures, with both good choices and good sculpts aplenty.  It is unfortunate that this line has come to an end, but it certainly went out on a high note with this two-pack.

I found the Larfleeze set (and the Hal figure w/cannon construct) selling for $5.00 at Big Lots.  I’m not sure if many of these figures remain in stock, but I definitely recommend picking it up if you’re lucky enough to find one.   The two-pack is also coming down in price on Ebay, where several auctions begin at $7.00 and there are some nice lots of assorted Action League figures also available that include Larfleeze.

Now, if I could only find the Atrocitus/John Stewart set that has thus so far slipped through my fingers!

– Mark J Marble

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