Tag: wonder woman character cars

ARES (Character Car) Variation Confirmed!?

Having the internet means having a vast array of tools to see into the future…if you know where to look at least. Our world is planned out far in advance – fashions, trends, technology, entertainment – and metered out to us based on careful formulas designed to maximize profit and steer us towards the next big thing. With a little bit of smarts and a little bit of luck, you can at least get a glimpse of what’s to come, even if you can’t physically hold it in your hands yet. Melodramatic much? Maybe! Of course I’m talkin’ ’bout toys, cuz that’s what I talk about! And one of the weirdest ways I’ve found to glimpse into the future of “toys” is the fucking Target website. Yeah, go figure. It’s not a 100% foolproof method, but you can see real-life, high quality photos of items that may not “exist” for months to come.

Remember Wonder Woman (the movie, that’s what the italics mean) from a few months back? Of course you do. You’ll probably also remember that just prior to its release we saw a character car 2-pack featuring Ares and the exclusive Wonder Woman (who we have no official name for…in my opinion they shoulda just called this car “Queen Hippolyta,” added an extra character to the roster, and be done with it…my kid pretends it’s Hippolyta anyway). Following Character Car release logic, this means we should see a single of Ares at some point. These would eventually surface (although who the fuck cares – everyone who gave a shit already had him via the 2-pack) but before they did, Target had a sort of dummy page devoted to the release, with pictures and everything. So just what in the hell am I getting at? Check out this post or just stick with me.

You see, Target’s Ares looked like this:

Ares

This is the photo lifted directly from Target’s website. Other pictures on the site confirm the bizarre yellow coloration of the quarter panels – i.e. it’s not some “trick of the light.”

And just for clarification, here’s what every other Ares looked like:

Ares

At first I thought maybe the single release of Ares had this yellow color, but as the picture above proves, these single releases were colored exactly the same as those in the 2-pack.

So what’s up with the Target listing? Just a fluke? An early paint job that was changed somewhere between taking promo photos and the actual release? A flat-out mistake that just happened to occur on the item that the Target photographers were given? Whatever the case, I think we can all agree that it’s a bit weird, right? Well I’m ’bout to drop another weird bomb on dat ass.

Toys R Us has their Character Cars spread out all over the place nowadays, so I pay attention to each of them closely to make sure I haven’t missed anything. Now I have yet to see a single Ares of any color out in the wild, but the 2-packs are pretty common. Here’s exactly what I found!

Ares

Ares

Ain’t it cool? Now just to prove this isn’t some bullshit having to do with reflections or the flash or some other anomaly, I put my personal “yellow Ares” and original Ares nose-to-nose:

Ares

Proof, right? I mean, when coupled with the weird Target thing, this pretty much proves that there are at least 2 variations (errors?) of Ares out there, i.e. the yellow-ish quarter panels were not some type of one-time misprint. It’s not unusual to see changes in colors between releases, such as the first Black Widow having gold accents and the Civil War release with silver. Whatever happened to Ares happened in the midst of a production run, not between them (which is far more understandable).

So whatcha think? A legit variation? Kinda reminds me of the Yondu variations from earlier this year (rear smooth wheels vs. rear all-terrain wheels) or the Slave I carship where grays and greens were swapped. It’s hard to say they’re intentional when there’s no official acknowledgment or in-universe reason for the changes, but then again it’s hard to believe that multiple errors rolled out of the factory and made it to market. I mean I get the occasional missing wheel or incorrect paint job slipping under the radar, but a whole population of mistakes just seems weird!

For what it’s worth, eBayers seem to catch on to this mistakes quickly, rapidly bundling both “variations” into one easy-to-own purchase. Hell, my kid noticed the Yondu wheel differences almost immediately just from browsing the thumbnails in the listings! Anyway, this yellow Ares variation seems to be much less widespread. I’ve yet to see a “yellow one” on eBay and the one I’ve got is the only one I’ve seen in a store.

So let me know, are these kinds of difference worth your time and money? I don’t know that I would’ve ever hunted down this yellow variant, but I definitely couldn’t pass it up when it was right in front of me! And what do you think happened to cause this issue…? If I knew more about how these things were painted it’d be easier to figure out just how widespread this issue is. i.e. does it happen once or twice per batch or is the kind of thing that affects an entire batch? I think it’s pretty cool, but I would like to put it into some sort of manufacturing context. For the time being at least, “yellow Ares” has earned a slot in my Hot Wheels DC case.

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New JUSTICE LEAGUE Character Cars – Differences and Similarities Confirmed!

About a week ago we saw the all-new packaging associated with the upcoming Justice League film. So far we’ve got five characters: Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, & Cyborg. At first it was only obvious that Batman was different. Then I saw some differences with Aquaman, and then suddenly I thought Superman might be different…anyway I ordered Superman and Aquaman and then found all 5 (albeit only in a single Target) the next day.

Justice League Character Cars

At any rate, it gave me a chance to definitively compare each of them. Clearly Batman is different, and as I already mentioned, the coloring on Aquaman is different as well. Otherwise though, we’ve seem ’em before. Wonder Woman is from her older BvS appearance, Superman borrows the BvS-era blue-wheeled Man of Steel look, and Cyborg is identical to his initial release not so long ago.

So there you go! Stick around for my next article because there is yet one more new Justice League Character Car on the table…

ALERT ALERT! Very Weird Ares Discrepancy…Someone HELP!

This wasn’t exactly what I thought I’d be writing about at the moment, but I think it’s pretty damn important and I want to go ahead and get it all out on the table. I’ma try to bang this out quick, so stick with me.

I was absent-mindedly doing some searching on Google Images for possible upcoming character cars when I ran across something really strange: a picture of what appears to be Ares as a single from Target’s website.

Ares

Do you see what I see? Look at the rear quarter panel: it’s a vibrant amber color.

Now this don’t mean shit (necessarily) because Target posts pics of stuff way before release. Just recently we’ve been seeing singles of Ares over on eBay, but as we’d expect, they all look like this:

And that is what they should look like…right? Well of course. We were introduced to Ares a few weeks prior thanks to his debut in a Wonder Woman 2-pack. Typically speaking, and especially lately – though there have certainly been exceptions – 2-packs are designed to include one exclusive and the another car that can be picked up as a single.

On the Wonder Woman 2-pack, we’re clearly told that Wonder Woman is the exclusive. That, in turn, implies that Ares will be available in this same form as a single, at some point. And that’s pretty much what’s happened so far, right? The 2-pack was released, followed by an Ares single, and this single appears to be the same as that in the 2-pack.

All of that makes perfect sense…until Target’s weird ass site went and posted what they posted.

Is this just another one of those random things where small changes are made for seemingly no reason? If so, why are some Ares singles “normal” and other affected by this strange new piece of a paint job? Is it just a fucked up photo…? If you look at the other pics with the car by itself, it appears normal. The yellow-ish piece only appears on the packaged vehicle. Trick of the light? Maybe. But if you visit the actual page on Target’s website and use the zoom feature, it really doesn’t look like we’re seeing an optical illusion.

Man, let me know if you know anything about this thing. It’s weird to be sure. Definitely reach out to me should you see one of these variants for sale! Otherwise, anybody got any best guesses as to what the hell is going on?

New Character Cars from WONDER WOMAN Film

Ok, damn, I am sofa king behind on what I want to write about it’s insane…trying to balance the little stuff with the lengthier stuff with the timely stuff…nevermind the more permanent fixtures I’d like to incorporate into the blog – buying guides, collection constituent lists, etc. Time to stow away my whining for the moment though, because I really should’ve gotten this entry out a good 4 or 5 days ago. I didn’t want to abandoned my previous piece though; once these things get left behind I have a bad habit of not picking them back up.

Most of us are probably aware of the DCEU’s forthcoming fourth installment – Wonder Woman. Hell, you don’t even have to be particularly in-tune with comics or DC. Wonder Woman is one of those gals we’ve all heard of but have a hard time placing. Adults will likely have varying degrees of memory of the Linda Carter series from the 70s, and some children of the 70s and 80s may remember seeing her alongside other members of the Justice League in cartoon form. She’s been around almost as long as Batman and Superman, first appearing back in 1941. Now, after just over three-quarters of a century, she gets her first live action film.

Hot Wheels is right in the middle of a collectible goldmine with their series of Character Cars, and evidently, the enterprise must be getting increasingly lucrative. We’re starting to see more specialized packaging, more variations, and more characters in general in the time before and after theatrical releases. 2016’s Suicide Squad is a very notable exception – all we got was a pricey special edition of Harley.

And so, Hot Wheels + new Wonder Woman film = specialized line of cars.

A few articles back I reported on the existence – or impending existence – of an Ares Character Car. Yep, the exclusive Riddler form the Batman Rogue’s Gallery 5-pack was released as a standalone, and there was Ares on the back. Around this same time, we had another Wonder Woman car pop up, similar to the Batman v Superman version, but with coloration differences and new Wonder Woman movie packaging. However, this card did not feature anything new on the card back. From then on, I was searching eBay for “hot wheel dc ares” several times a day, and then eventually, a single listing popped up: a Wonder Woman vs. Ares 2-Pack featuring an exclusive Wonder Woman car!

I immediately bought it. The next day, I went to a Toys R Us a couple towns over, and found several. These don’t seem to be totally widespread yet, but I have found them at the Cary and Durham TRUs, though not the one in Raleigh. Anyway, there is is – Ares and our fifth iteration of Wonder Woman! Besides being excited about Ares and a more casually “dressed” Wonder Woman, does the 2-pack imply anything else? In my opinion, yes.

See, Hot Wheels is damn tricky with their 2-packs. What they like to do is release the pack with one exclusive (whether explicitly stated or not) and then another car which is (or becomes) available singly. We’re already told that the Wonder Woman car is the exclusive, to this must mean that Ares is getting a standalone release as well – which would make sense based on what the back of the Riddler said. All of that adds up to at least 3 Wonder Woman Film-branded character car packs: new Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman vs Ares pack, and an upcoming Ares. Might this mean we get more character cars under the Wonder Woman Film banner…? The back mentions Zeus – a god like Ares – in the flavor text, and Mattel (Hot Wheels’ parent company) has put out a first wave of Wonder Woman Film dolls including both Queen Hippolyta and Steve Trevor. And get this: one of the new DC Multiverse figures (the $20 ones that each come with a piece of another figure) is Menalippe, Wonder Woman’s aunt.

I don’t know any more about the upcoming film than anyone else, possibly even less, and furthermore I’m not wildly familiar with Wonder Woman’s mythos either, so I’m straight up dropping these characters’ names based on when and where they’re mentioned with regards to merchandise. Basically I’m building up to this: does this mean the Wonder Woman Film branding will extend to other characters introduced to us from the movie? It would seem a little weird for this packaging to exist only for 3 items, though it’s worth mentioning that Ant-Man got his own packaging (as well as a Civil War card) and so did Doctor Strange; neither branding persisted any further than the titular characters. The Batman v Superman packaging only lasted 3 vehicles as well: Armored Batman, Man of Steel, and then the BvS Wonder Woman released last summer and way, way after the other 2.

So what do you think? Is the DCU arm of Hot Wheels’ Character Cars ready to put Batman on the backburner and start digging into the nooks and crannies of DC’s vast multiverse? Should they venture into such territory so soon after skipping over heavyweights like Lex Luthor and Doomsday who would’ve been perfect following Batman v Superman? I get that you gotta start somewhere, but if we get a Hippolyta before a Lex Luthor…I just…I dunno. What I really hope is that they don’t get as messy as Marvel…random stuff like Red Hulk and Nova while superstars like the Fantastic Four and the X-Men are ignored.

But hey, there will always be shit to complain about. In the end we got ourselves an Ares Character Car, and that’s pretty fuckin’ cool. Let’s do it up:


Wonder Woman vs Ares 2-pack

Wonder Woman vs Ares

“WONDER WOMAN is the daughter of Zeus. ARES is the God of War. Now, these sworn enemies square off as fierce fighting vehicles in a battle of mythic proportions.”

“The stunning Amazon strength and beauty of WONDER WOMAN shines forth in thies V-8 sports car with wrist guard fender shields and WW insignia emblazoned over the front grille. ARES is a massive tactical vehicle with heavily armored chest plates and a skull-shaped turret that allow him to always be prepared for combat.”

“With a score to settle almost as old as Time itself, sparks are sure to fly when these two go hood-to-hood.”

Overall, I think this is a great 2-pack. It’s fully centered on the new Wonder Woman film and it gives us, for the first time in DCU’s character cars, a 100% non-Batman villain! It does make me lament the fact that there wasn’t more done with Batman v Superman or Suicide Squad, but maybe we can hope that wfro this point forward each film will get some respectable level of attention.

New Wonder Woman

Do we need 5 Wonder Woman cars…? Probably not. But honestly, the one before this one – the one that looks very similar to the BvS version – seems to be the most unnecessary. This newest one, touted as the 2-pack’s exclusive, retains the same body shape but with a vastly different color scheme meant to represent Wonder Woman in her more relaxed, casual wear, i.e. not her elaborate and showy “Wonder Woman” outfit. It actually looks quite similar to the 12″ Queen Hippolyta doll recently released with its sortta tan-gold thing going on…what do you even call that color? It’s like…metallic beige or something…

Ares

Now look at dis mofo. Is it cool? Is it not? I’m not even sure. But it is one of the most unique and original Character Cars we’ve ever seen, and for that, it deserves a lot of credit…even if it does come off as a bit abstract. Earlier I mentioned that my knowledge of Wonder Woman mythos is limited – really all I “know” about Ares comes from the Injustice: Gods Among Us fighting game released a couple years back. The car doesn’t quite hit the whole “black-knight-meets-Satan” thing that the game gives us, though it’s definitely got an old world, pagan-esque feel to it…maybe even a bit “occult-adjacent” with the weird emblem thing on top coupled with the red tires and bestial face created at the front.

I can’t say I’ve ever really appreciated Hot Wheels’ tactic of releasing 2-packs with only ONE exclusive in them; however, I do prefer it done this way – the non-exclusive released before its single counterpart. Overall this is a really cool set and I’m glad to see Wonder Woman (the upcoming film) getting some competent (and timely!) love from the Character Car department. It makes me a little sad for all the chances missed in previous films, but at the same time, it’s a promising start for perhaps a new, more comprehensive era of Character Car releases. Will we ever backtrack to Man of Steel for a General Zod or rewind to Suicide Squad for a reasonable collection of relative nobodies like Diablo, Enchantress, Captain Boomerang, or Rick Flagg? (Or Incubus or (I’m having to stifle my laughter) Slipknot or…) The answer is probably not – but I’m trying to stay positive, and like I said, starting with Wonder Woman is better than leaving the new film behind like the others. Really this could be a good chance for the DC side of Hot Wheels to regroup and create a complete and respectable collection as opposed to the random sprawl of Marvel (hooray for no fucking villains! (barely)) and the uneven distribution of Star Wars (why do we have fuckers like Sidon and Biggs and Battle-Damaged Flametrooper before a damn Lando Calrissian!!!??? Why has the prequel trilogy been ignored save for largely fodder like Battle Droid and 501st Clone Trooper? Hey, I’m all for a Carbonite Han or Bossk, but not ahead of (I love railing these off) Qui-Gon, Padme, Mace, Dooku, Jar Jar (I know, I know), and maybe even the likes of Nute Gunray, a younger Obi-Wan, and Commander Cody.) Whatever. Whatever!


Blahph, another entry that took me way too long to type! Anyway, hope you enjoyed a closer look at Wonder Woman #5 and the supercool Ares. I’ve got some more cool shit that I’ma start working on right now so stick around! I’ve got all kindsa shit to talk about – LEGOs, Batman, amiibo, more cars, more and more cars, and man, lots of good stuff.

NEW Character Cars CONFIRMED! – Part 1: DC Universe

Well it didn’t take long, did it!? As usual, I was doing my relentless searching. It’s tough to tell exactly what is what at this point, so I’ll just go over what I found.

The Riddler
Huh? “The Riddler”? Doesn’t he already exist? Well…yes, he does. The Riddler was featured as the exclusive in the Batman’s Rogue Gallery 5-pack that’s been sitting in stores for well over a year now. However, the fact that it suddenly pops up as a single shouldn’t be construed as insignificant. Hot Wheels has generally been pretty good about preserving the exclusivity of similar items, but what I really want to pay attention to is the back of the card… Update: I bought one of these and received it in the mail much much quicker than I thought…I can honestly say there is no difference between this standalone Riddler and the “exclusive” within the Batman 5-pack.

The Riddler

Harley Quinn (Classic / Comics Appearance)
Following the course of this version of Harley has been a strange journey. This classic, red-and-black version of Harley had been rumored for some time, and I finally saw it pop up from a single seller…over in the UK. I bought it, and obviously the packaging was tailored for a UK audience (with words like “colours” and overall a larger text-to-artwork ratio). I saw her pop up again a few weeks later – also from the UK – but this time the total was like $11.30 plus free shipping. (I paid almost $50 total for the first one.) Just for the hell of it, I got it. What was odd is that this was definitely in US packaging….of course what makes all this super strange is that for a while now, we’ve had the new “Character Cars” branded packaging, neither of which these Harley’s had. However, as of earlier this week, it seems that we finally have a US version of the Classic Harley and part of the same wave as the Riddler. Still doesn’t explain where these old Harley’s came from but wtf ever. Like The Riddler, we don’t want to ignore Harley’s back either…

Harley Quinn

Notice that we finally have a US version of Harley!

???

I was going to show you the back of the new Harley Quinn card here…but it has disappeared! I don’t know what happened to it…2 days later and it is absolutely no where…

Wonder Woman (2017)
Part of what’s on these backs is a version of Wonder Woman not totally unlike the BvS version that came out last summer. Now we know from experience we can’t 100% rely on the artwork used on the back of the cards, but it can be useful. This “new” Wonder Woman looks like the BvS model with blue hindquarters instead of the original gray. One or two posts back I mention stumbling across a new Wonder Woman with the logo from the upcoming film on the package…is this the new Wonder Woman or by some crazy chance another new Wonder Woman? Well I can’t answer that question for you just yet, but my “new Wonder Woman” did just get here. She is most definitely shiny (unlike the matte finish of BvS version) and the rear portion is straight up black instead of the original gray. Blue? Anyone see any blue!? No…and this is what confuses me. On the one hand, why the hell would Hot Wheels bang out 2 separate Wonder Womans so close together? On the other hand, would it perhaps make some sense to put out a “2017 movie Wonder Woman” (the one I just got with the black) and a sort of “regular DCU edition” as well…?

Wonder Woman

Ares
Alright, did you cheat and look at the back(s) yet? We’ve got an Ares on the way!!! This is character/car that would’ve easily gone on any “DC want list” by virtue of being one of Wonder Woman’s coolest enemies, but damn, I am surprised we’re seeing it so soon! The artwork can be hit or miss when it comes to these vehicles, and it’s hard to tell exactly what the Ares car is going for. Unfortunately, it doesn’t quite exist just yet…but so far Hot Wheels hasn’t left us dangling, so I don’t see why this wouldn’t drop sometime in the near future.

Ares

The artwork leaves something to be desired in this indistinct, tank-like ride, but I’m still very excited to see the finished product in the flesh!


Yeah, that was kinda confusing I guess…for some reason I just felt like going through my thought process and discovery. Here’s what we’re left with at the end of the day:

  • Aresconfirmed via back of card; not out yet
  • Wonder Woman 2017 Movie Versionconfirmed, I’ve got one of these in my possession
  • Harley Quinn – Red & Black Comics/Classic Versionconfirmed – yes, we’ve known about this for a while, but we finally have proof that a US version in new US packaging exists. It’s also made its way onto the back of other cards.
  • The Riddlerconfirmed as a single, standalone release; for better or worse, it is exactly the same thing found in the Batman Rogue’s Gallery 5-pack

Stick around for a quick Part 2 where we look at some upcoming releases from another camp!

New (I Think!) Wonder Woman / DC Character Car

New (I Think!) Wonder Woman / DC Character Car

The last few hours have been full of bizarre finds, from the strange possibly-Canadian Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 5-Pack, to the different wheels of Yondu, and now to this strange “new” Wonder Woman Character Car.

A Brief History of Wonder Woman

Way back when, back when the first DCU Character Cars were rolling off the line, we got this first version of Wonder Woman. She’s got a typical comic-esque Wonder Woman appearance with lots of blue and red and even a large portion of the car being clear. It’s been out of production for some time, and has not been re-released. Along with Bane, she’s one of the rarest of the old DC cars.

Wonder Woman (1)

Sometime early last summer (2016), alleged pictures of a new, updated Wonder Woman car popped up with a look more closely resembling her appearance in Batman v Superman. She’s mostly red with a matte finish and some subtle gold accents. The car is pretty simple, but it adequately captures Wonder Woman’s austere and elegant demeanor.

Wonder Woman (2)

Fast forward to just a few weeks ago, and the first 3 DC Super Hero Girls Character Cars come rolling out, including Wonder Woman. The exact same car from her initial release is used, though it’s given an appropriate paint job becoming of her appearance on the cartoon show.

Wonder Woman (3)

And so that brings me to early this morning, where I was casually searching as usual. This time I got a hit on a “new,” 2017″ Wonder Woman. It wasn’t the vehicle that immediately caught my eye though, it was the packaging. The card is branded as merchandise from the upcoming Wonder Woman film! When it comes to the car itself, well, things become a little difficult to figure out, especially from this one, single pic courtesy of the eBay seller.

Wonder Woman (4)

Can you see much? I’ll be honest, At first it struck me as nothing more than repackaged BvS Wonder Woman. But then I looked at it a little longer; the red seems to be somewhat shiny, and the back quarter panels look silver. Even within the bubble, the previous Wonder Woman clearly has a matte finish, and the back area is definitely gray instead of something silver or shiny. What we need is a clear shot of the car out in the open.

Wonder Woman (2)

I’ll admit this is a tough one…obviously Hot Wheels isn’t intent on unveiling a brand new Wonder Woman, but clearly they’re aware that they’re making some changes. I guess the big question is “why?” Why inundate the collectors with all these trivial differences? This is already a problem over on their Marvel front and it looks like it’s creeping over into DCU territory. (I’ve got several examples I plan on gathering up and sharing at some point in the near future.) Oh well. The new card back is encouraging at least, so yes, I ordered this “new”(ish?) Wonder Woman so we’ll see just how new she is before long!