There comes a time in a collectors life that an item comes on the block that brings out the most intense desire of “must have” determination to acquire a particular item. These moments actually come and go considering that times and tastes change however in this instance this particular flutter found in my hoarders heart was so profound that I had no choice but to give in or risk having those flutters carry me all the way to South America for the winter. “What could possibly cause such a stir in a normally mild manner dork such as yourself, Jim?” you ask. Keep reading fellows and girls and find out more about this latest, unique and one of the more exciting acquisitions that has actually taking a spot in the Toy Box as well as on the reading shelf and inside my now ignited imagination.
Point #1. What it is.
Julius Destructus: A custom rendering of Tim Baron’s creation by the artist himself.
Point #2. Where it came from.
Tim offered up a very small run of these handmade Classic Style action figures on the Mego Museum Forums; Marketplace Thread at the end of October 2011.
Point #3. The Good.
The head sculpt is very impressive to me not just because it is a dead on likeness but more
importantly because it really captures the art style. And while I’m no artist by any stretch of the imagination I do appreciate good art when I see it. The way Tim captured his gritty, heavily detailed artwork in 3 Dimensions is very impressive. I’ve got more on that in a few.
Another thing I really appreciate about what Tim has done here is that he has done a more than fine job in giving Julius the Mego treatment in a way that I’m sure would have passed Marty Abrams approval for what makes a Mego. The black oven mitt Mego style gloves are an especially great aspect of this styling. Anyone can paint hands to match a gauntlet to look like a glove, but only a Mego can get the same basic effect and also be able to snatch cookies out of the oven.
Also Tim’s use of a simple white “V” line to bring out costume detail is very much appreciated. It’s amazing how a couple of well placed lines can do so much. And of course I
would be remiss to not mention the wonderfully crafted skull belt buckle. IN this piece Tim has once again translated his 2D style perfectly in 3D. Love it!
Point #4. The Bad.
There is no bad. Only good. Move along.
Point #5. Why I like it.
I love this figure for many different reasons and it’s my pleasure to share all of them with you! J
1.) First off the character and story of Julius Destructus is brilliant. Thanks to the graphic novel “The life and times of Julius Destructus” by Tim with scripting duties provided by the incredibly talented Ben Avery the life that is breathed into these pages is awesome. While those of you who have remained plugged into the comic book / graphic novel world, stories and art such as this will not come as a surprise to you (though you will find some wonderful, “Nice! I like how they did that” moments) for those such as myself who are in and out of same said world you will be treated to one heck of an adventure. Get the book here.
2.) Those who are members or visitors of the Customs Forum at the Mego Museum are already privy to this next impressive point: Julius here is Tim’s first foray into sculpting, casting and painting. And while the final product in and of itself is impressive the message in between the lines to me is something that I think is even more impressive.
When I look at this most impressive figure I not only see the character but I also feel the passion the creator has for the creation. There is something magical going on here folks. You see it’s one thing to create a character, another to draw a character, and a totally higher level of talent to express the characters thoughts, feelings and emotions through the written word. And now Tim has shown exactly how important this character is to him. In this 8-inch form we find that the creator has a true knowledge of the character that you can’t simply ‘crank out’. The level of details and nuances in the head sculpt and paint applications in this 3-D rendering in my opinion shows that Tim Baron and his creation are on a level that goes much deeper than a simple drawing on a sketch pad. Another big stand out factor for me is that Tim has shown the world (by example) that a ‘great and terrible dream’* can come true.
3.) I also appreciate the fact that with this effort Tim has given me a great platform to point out another fun and fascinating aspect about Mego and Mego-like figure collecting, and that my friends is the ability to create your own character in this perfect 8 inch scale. In a part by part break down here’s how you can begin to make your own custom figure:
The body and belt is from the guy who I will always credit as the leader in the resurrection of all this Mego style goodness, Dr. Mego himself Paul Clarke www.drmego.com The good doctor is also responsible for the super cool Commander X line of figures for Jay Piscopo’s “Capt’n Eli comics character and all of his variations. Those are still available by the way at www.captneli.com
The suit, boots and oven mitts are from the folks at Classic TV Toys. www.classictvtoys.com While these guys get a bad rap from me for their figures (look for the Mad Monster reviews) they actually do a pretty good job when it comes to their accessories.
The resealable clamshell (which is super sweet by the way, it means you can play with it and then put it back on the card kids!) comes from Castaway toys. www.castawaytoys.com These guys are another great source for parts and pieces as well as some other really cool vintage Mego items at insanely low prices.
The head of course could be yours too; that is so long as you could beg Tim to make you one. These were a limited run but who knows? Tim may get the itch again and need to scratch it… or even better some wise publisher sees what I see in Julius and pays Tim a million dollars to mass market the book and this fellow. (I’m rooting for ya Tim!)
*The Great and Terrible Dream’ was the first compilation of Tim’s work he released in graphic novel form in 2009
Point #6. Why you should or shouldn’t get one.
Why you should:
Unless he makes more or the buyers of the original release decide to part with theirs, you can’t. Sorry about that.
Why you shouldn’t:
Why you should pretty much covers this one too.
Passion. Talent. Entertainment. Fun. Four words that go a long way in describing what Tim Baron has created here in his Julius Destructus 8 inch Classic Style Action Figure. And while it is true that there are no more available at this writing, the tale of Julius is still available at www.juliuscomic.com . I do highly recommend the book because I promise you the time spent reading this very impressive graphic novel and studying the masterful pen strokes that creates this world will leave you with a since of contentment that only comes from quality entertainment. Plus if we move some books, Tim may get inspired to crank out some more of these excellent figures or even better, he may decide to churn out some of his other characters. But be warned, if he does go the route of the latter I will be throwing elbows all the way to the checkout to ensure I get mine. Now – Order the book and Go Play! – Jim 11/06/11
Jim Bumgardner is a 20 year veteran of the broadcast industry and currently serves as the news director for television station TKO 8 in Harrison, Arkansas. Jim is the father of two the husband of one and firm believer in the power of toys for both the mind, body and soul. You can contact Jim via email at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
All images and products are the sole copyrighted property of it’s respective owners. Specialty photographs and graphic work used for this article were done by Jim at the TKO 8 Studios located at 500 N. Main St in Harrison, Arkansas. “Little Jim” was created by Dawn O’Connell of Little Buddies Action Figures. Learn more about getting your own Little Buddy at www.littlebuddiesactionfigures.com
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