“The Wall” Chapter 2: 1950’s Commander X from Nemo Publishing

“Stand by for ADVENTURE!”

For this review I must warn you that this is going to be one of the toughest for me to stay focused on just the toy. This 8 inch rendering of one of Jay Piscopo’s creations has a very special place in my heart and imagination. The reason’s may sound corny or even cheesy to some but so be it. I’ve never once claimed to be non-corny or non-cheesy.

1950's style Commander X from Jay Piscopo and Nemo Publishing


This 1950’s Commander X is actually so much more than just a toy. He is to me, the embodiment of creative expression that embraces “branding” in an almost Disney style outreach that is if given the chance, a wonderful vehicle for today’s kids to get introduced into not only the fun that comes from playtime with action figures but also the adventures your mind can go on thanks to the pages of a comic book.

The mysterious, time traveling hero known as Commander X is actually a secondary character from Jay’s “Undersea Adventure’s of Capt’n Eli” graphic novels. In those books the Commander serves as a mentor of sorts to this remarkable young boy who spends his days under the sea fighting the good fight for both the sea dwellers and land lubbers alike. See it’s far too easy for me to get off track here because what this one action figure represents. Do yourself a favor and learn more about Capt’n Eli at Jay’s official website www.captneli.com and also check out the interview I did with Jay discussing the many facets of this wonderful world at via these links

Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axy9Qe0aPFc

Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w4hwTQc2Tj8

Part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IaaSj6kPDiw

Once you visit Jay’s site or watch the interview you’ll see why not only is this a cool comic book world but also the workings of an artist and creator that deserves applause for his outstanding efforts to create a comic for kids that is fun and exciting. Oh yeah, and you can also learn more about the Commander’s pal “Sea Ghost”. You’ll be glad you did.

Now back to “The Wall”

Point #1. What it is.

This my friends is a HERO!

This particular version of the Commander is definitely my favorite of all the versions that are available. With his Retro 50’s hero look along with his real world hero accessories (the gun and knife) are just too cool for school. And probably wouldn’t be allowed on the playground these days anyway. “A gun and a knife?!?! Call the ATF!”

Point #2. Where it came from.

All of the Commander X Limited Edition action figures are the product of “Dr. Mego” himself, Paul Clark. The good

The Commander is created with plastic, rubber bands, real cloth costume, and lots of LOVE!

Doctor actually puts these fellows together one by one using factory made Mego reproduction parts as created by himself. To those who don’t know Dr. Mego is also one half of the people that make up EMCE Toys which is indeed the 21st Century reincarnation of Mego. As for my figure he along with the Western Knight version (also a top ten favorite of mine) were sent to me as a review copy for the interviews that I mentioned above. So while I didn’t shell out the $19.99 for him this figure is truly priceless to me and Lord willing I hope to never have him leave my collection.

Point #3. The Good.

Being that Commander X here is made up of the most authentic Mego parts out there I dare to say that he is the first *NEW Mego produced on a large scale basis. Sure EMCE re- released both the Star Trek and Planet of the Apes lines wonderfully, Commander X however is to the best of my knowledge, the first original character to come from the Dr.’s lab.

*EDIT – I need to clarify a timeline goof on my part. The first actual NEW Mego’s produced by EMCE were the Night of the Living Dead Figures of Ben and the Zombie. Check those really cool 1st NEW Mego’s and a whole lot more New Mego Goodness at EMCE’s official site  via this link… http://www.fourthcastle.com

Dressed for ACTION! (and adventure)

Another very good point is the clothing. The jacket, pants, and shirt are all factory made and hold up very well under normal playtime conditions. Mego fans will note that the Jacket and Pants are actually a Clark Kent Alter Ego reproduction suit, but with the way the lapels have been flattened and the pants legs are tucked in, the novice may over look this point.

Ready to stomp a mudhole in all evil doers. And then "stick 'em" if need be.

The cache of accessories that Commander X comes with is also awe-inspiring. Not only do you get a gun and a knife, you also get really cool boots, a belt emblazoned with the “X” logo and a matching hat. All of this for only $19.99? Crazy I tell ya, Crazy!

And one final touch that can be easily overlooked is that the Commander (like most EMCE toys) comes in a resealable package that is perfect for display and storage as well as making the figure easily accessible for play. The card art is nothing to overlook either but that you can see for yourself when you order one..




Point #4. The Bad.

The only negative I could find and it occurred on picture day*.

In all fairness and as an unbiased reviewer I hate throwing out the negative but, it’s part of the gig. With that said my biggest concern came from the knife. The handy dandy dagger comes positioned in the Commander’s boot and looks super cool. The problem came when I pulled the knife out for the photo shoot. It came out fine, the Commander held it fine, but when I went to put it back… it snapped where the blade meets the hilt. Ouch! There’s nothing worse in my opinion then a toy that breaks easy. It appears the knife was cast in a resin where if had been done in a rubber this type of breakage wouldn’t be an issue. (*Edit- Nemo Publishing has offered to replace the knife. Mind you in this review I am not complaining in the least and I applaud them for their stand up customer service!)

The only other “Bad” point that I can find is the stiffness in the shoulders. Being a true Mego style Type 2 body overall poseability is excellent but the shoulders are just a smidge too tight to raise his arms up above his head. But then again Commander X is not one to surrender so how often would you need to do that anyway?

Point #5. Why I like it.

So smooth. So very smooth.

Commander X is a great comic book character. His look is so traditional when it comes to what my mind says a hero should look like. The squared jaw, the sharp features, the pupil less eyes… now that’s a hero!

It also doesn’t hurt that at his base his head is a re-purposed Mego Superman head with the eyes whited out and a black mask and mustache added. To me that is exactly what Mego would have done had they had the Commander X license back in the day.

"Superman you say? I get that a lot."

And while some may poo-poo this aspect, I say;” Read the books and check out the art. This sculpt looks more like Commander X than Superman anyway.” And for those who know me, know that I don’t say that lightly considering the Mego Superman is my favorite toy EVER.

Point #6. Why you should or shouldn’t get one.

Why you should:

"Bring it!"

Not wanting to sound redundant here but come on, he is simply a cool looking toy. This guy SCREAMS action and adventure! Add to that, with the web and comic book tie-in’s it is a great way to introduce kids into a total package concept that doesn’t involve a video game.

Why you shouldn’t:

With the exception of the knife issue I honestly can’t think of any real reason why you shouldn’t order this fellow or one of the other versions today. Simply put there is nothing that I can fault here. Not even the price. Considering all that you get, you will never find a better bang for

Not all versions have been released but of the one's that have you will not be disappointed in any of them.

your buck when it comes to an 8 inch action figure. If you disassembled the Commander down to his individual parts and priced them at Dr. Mego’s site ( www.drmego.com )  and you’ll see that this effort is a true labor of love with playtime being the biggest winner.


In Conclusion:

Like I said at the start, this was a tough review to stay focused on for just the toy considering how much more is

He'll even let you wear his hat! What a guy!

involved with this heroes back story. I sincerely hope that each and everyone of you who read this will take the time to visit Jay Piscopo’s site, watch the interview, study up on all the great things that Commander X and his pals offer and allow yourself the chance to enjoy perhaps for the first time, how much fun a comic book character can be.

Now, Go Play!



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 jimstoybox@gmail.com or visit his website at www.jimsmegos.com

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

“The Wall” Chapter 1 – Mattel’s Retro Action DC Super Heroes: Superman.

How cool is this? Thanks to Dawn O'Connell I can stand side by side with my favorite super hero!

Mattel Toys Sucks. Period. They cancel lines blaming lack of fan base support while they themselves offer the products o market in the most piss poor manner possible. I went out on a limb with these reviews as a fan trying to push the product. In the end Mattel showed that they are not worthy of mine or your accolades or MONEY. I’m not editing the reviews however. At the time of their writing I meant what I said and in regards to the figures themselves I feel the same way, however the emotional connection is gone – Signed, Jim 01/14/12


Despite hundreds of artist’s and numerous actors’ degrees of difference, the Man of Steel is perhaps the most recognized icon on the planet. The Red, Blue and Yellow costume emblazoned with the big red “S” for me and millions of other fanboys that spans several generations including my father and grandfather, has been the definitive image of the term hero.

In this review I’d like to introduce you to this latest incarnation of the World’s Greatest Super Hero and share with you my take on this “throw back” to a simpler time that has led some purists to “throwing up”. With that said I want to address this matter first and foremost. This is NOT a Mego WGSH Superman, was never intended to be and never will be although a side by side comparison shows some wonderful similarities. The main one being the 8 inch scale.

So with that fact pointed out let’s move forward with this review looking at this modern toy from the fact that this is a NEW toy that will have to be judged on its own merit in today’s toy buying world which is flooded with competitors that Mego never had to contend with.

While these two "Supermen" share a lot of the same characteristics the fact remains that the nearly 40 year age gap between the two shows how the passing of time can both enhance and skew ones view through the nostalgic rearview mirror.

Point 1.) What it is; Retro Action Superman, produced by Mattel – Released 2010.

The Man of Tomorrow, based on THEN, living in the NOW.

Point 2.) Where it came from.

This particular carded figure came from T.J.Maxx for only $9.99 as part of the Wave 2 Assortment. The loose figure used for this review was actually purchased on ebay. While I can’t recall the exact price I paid I do know that it was a couple bucks more than the MSRP of $19.99 and I also had to pay shipping which was at least $9.00.

3. The Good.

The return of the 8 inch clothed action figure for me sparks a wonderful feeling of sentiment. I just wish I could get my son to care as much.

Despite what will seem like a laundry list of complaints this “toy” is still fun and does have real play value. In a world were playtime is dominated by the video game industry this throwback to an era long since passed is a great way to show young boys the fun that comes from action figures. So in that respect I see this as a great opportunity for fathers to play with their children in a way that is familiar to them.

Also the construction is overall pretty sturdy. Having seen what customizers have had to do to cannibalize the heads and hands of this figure, tearing the body a part is no easy task.

4. The Bad.

Loosey goosey body style… has since been fixed for Waves 3 and on.
Cracked emblem with very minimal play
The Red is a bit pale, almost pinkish. I only use the Mego Superman to show the contrast in the red's.

Limited Retail availability. Being a Toys R Us exclusive item isn’t as great as it once was. Mind you I live in an area where the nearest TRU location is over an hour away so  this definitely doesn’t help the situation. Add to that the TRU locations that I have visited (3 hours away in Little Rock) seem to have never updated their stock since the first wave.

5. Why I like it.

Outside of the obvious…
And the biggest deal maker for me is the Yellow "S" Shield on the back of the cape. Truly a wonderful finishing touch that adds to the Super Friends feel.

On the nostalgia scale I have to give this toy a “10”. It is so remarkably cool to see this version of the Man of Steel that I myself relate to best from my childhood.

6. Why you should or shouldn’t get one.

You should because…

It’s a very fun display piece. The retro card art along with the style itself is very fun from a nostalgic point of view.

You shouldn’t because….


With an M.S.R.P. of $19.99 it may be a bit of a tough impulse purchase.


Along with the “Bad” comments above… Price is a consideration. With an MSRP of $19.99 it could be considered a higher end price for a toy however if you browse the action figure isles you’ll see that the average prices of plastic figures are considerably higher all across the board. Considering over Toys R Us prices it is actually a bargain. At last check in a store new retro vintage carded Star Wars Figures were retailing for $9.99 and they are a lot smaller, with no cloth clothing. So in the end the budget minded parent may find it a tough “Try me” toy if a kid isn’t truly into Superman. And considering that there is no direct toy, movie or video game tie in, kids today don’t have such a strong connection to Clark’s alter ego.

In conclusion

Overall: As is the case of every review I write, I leave the final conclusion to you the individual consumer. For me however this was a must have toy. From the initial announcement of the line I had a strong feeling that I myself would get hooked. I was right. Of the four waves released so far I’ve picked up all but three of them (Shazam, Black Adam and Darkseid). But those last three will eventually make it into my collection but considering there non connection to the “Challenge of the Super Friends” I’m not as inclined as I was with the previous releases.

And to the purists, don’t hate, appreciate. While this fellow can never be a Mego, with the improvements that Mattel has been making to the bodies I do see these Re-Mego’s as a great addition to an action figure collection.

Play time is still fun time for me and my "Supermen"

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 jimstoybox@gmail.com or visit his website at www.jimsmegos.com


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

Intermission? But we just got started!

Good morning all. Taking a time away from “The Wall” to get a little more familiar with Word Press. The big thing me that I want to learn is adding links to text and pictures. Link any good web article should do, I want to be able to point you in the right direction for more info and other really cool spots on the web. So let’s play shall we?

Greatest place on the planet can be found HERE

One day funny videos will be found HERE

My little Web World is HERE

Okay so I’ve just finished writing the above text and am now going to add the links. It’s 7:20 AM and you must be bored to be reading this.  

Okay it’s now 7:24 and the links have been created. Now to test ’em…

Cool. It’s now 7:26 AM and all checks out. I was going to do an “email me” link but that didn’t work out so well. That’s okay… it’ll give me something to learn tomorrow.



Day 1 of “The Wall” – The Overview

Our stars of the show.
These 16 action figures are so chock full of fun it’s amazing that they can fit in one small area!

And so it begins!

Welcome to Day 1 of “The Wall” blog where I will be giving you a rundown and review of the “Re-Mego’s” that adorn my wall at home and have earned a special place in my heart. As this is the very first day of this little goal of mine I’d like to stop and pause a moment to give a huge shout out to all my pals at the Mego Museum. This collection of fellow lovers of all things Mego has welcomed me in with open arms and has become like a second “cyber-family”. Plus without this wonderful community and it’s members I never would have scored most of these wonderful additions to my collection. It was also their encouragement that has boosted up my drive to do this blog and hone my skills as a marketer and reviewer. So to all of my “Mego Buddies” I say thank you! Now let’s get to “The Wall”

"The primary Suspects"
With a cast like this who needs TV? Oh wait.

This morning started out with a round of Photoshopping that finds me getting even more excited about this endeavor.  Seeing that in the end of everyday I get to work on this blog I’ll be taking a little time away from the “real world” I’ll actually be doing numerous things that I love. From writing to designing the layout of this blog I can see why so many people have flocked to this form of communication. It truly is a blast to write about the things that mean so much to you. Thank you Word Press!

Now without further ado may I introduce you to this blogs starting line up and the order in which they will be tackled.

#1. Mattel’s Retro Action DC  Super Heroes : Superman.

Retro Action Superman
The Man of Steel returns to 8 inch plastic form.

#2. 1950’s Version Commander X

1950's Commander X
While the Commander may look a little familiar to Mego collectors he is a hero in his own right.

#3. The Greatest American Hero

The Greatest American Hero
Oh, what could have been. However what is, is actually better!

#4. Mattel’s Retro Action DC Super Heroes : Batman


Retro Action Batman


#5. Flatt World’s Bela Lugosi as Dracula


Bela Lugosi Dracula


#6. Castaway Toys Creepy Classics : Zombie


Castaway Toys Zombie


#7. Classic TV Toys : Mego Mad Monsters Dracula Reissue


Mad Monsters Dracula


#8. Classic TV Toys : Mego Mad Monsters Frankenstein Reissue

Mad Monsters Frankenstein
He was only looking for a friend. Ignorance and intolerence is so so wrong.

#9. Castaway Toys Creepy Classics : Mr. Hyde


Castaway Toys Mr. Hyde


#10. Jim’s Mego’s Retro Action DC Super Heroes : Robin (sort of)


Custom Robin


#11. EMCE Toys, Mego Star Trek Reissue: Captain Kirk


Captain James T. Kirk


#12. EMCE Toys/ Specter Toys; Dark Shadows: Chris Jennings


Dark Shadows Chris Jennings


#13. Classic TV Toys; Mad Monsters Series 2: The Salem Witch


CTVT Salem Witch


#14. Classic TV Toys; Mad Monsters Series 2: The Gruesome Ghost


CTVT Ghost


#15. Classic TV Toys : Mego Mad Monsters Mummy Reissue


CTVT Mummy


#15. Classic TV Toys; Mad Monsters Series 2: The Demonic Devil


CTVT Devil


Okay fellow’s and girls there is the starting line up! I am looking so very forward to sharing with you my take on these wonderful figures. In a perfect world these reviews would come one day after another but sadly I do not get paid to do this (yet) and I do have a full time gig, loving wife, and a beautiful Toddler so it may take 16 weeks instead of 16 days to complete. But you know what? It’ll be worth it!

So until next time when Retro Action Superman say’s;


Now, Go Play!



Hello world!

To all I say, welcome to my world! I hope you find this blog interesting, entertaining and maybe even a little educational too.  I’ve never really blogged before so forgive me if things look a bit sloppy.

Toy blogging… a goal?

The hope of this blog is to help me focus in on a goal of mine to become a professional toy reviewer and marketer. This first run will consist of “The Wall”. Let me explain;

Like all things in life organization and focus are crucial to anything being successful. So in my goal I’ve decided to hone in on one aspect of my personal collection to write about, “The Wall”. And no this has nothing to do with Pink Floyd. The wall that I speak of is the current collection of “Re-Mego’s” that I have acquired in the past year or so that I would like to share a little about. Each one has found a special place in my heart, not only for the sake of nostalgia but also for the sake of everyday escapism, de-stressing and most importantly staying in touch with my inner child that I truly believe helps keep all of us closer to God. With that said this isn’t a religious thing, it’s simply a living thing. Moving on.

For this review of “The Wall” each subject will be explained in the following manner:

1. What it is.

2. Where it came from.

3. The Good.

4. The Bad.

5. Why I like it.

6. Why you should or shouldn’t get one.

In the end I hope to create an entertaining and insightful read that can help you become an educated buyer or collector. Also note I plan on plenty of photo’s, video and other such accessories to spice up each review. So with all of that said I wrap up this initial “goal statement” and conclude for the day. Come back tomorrow for a rundown of our starting line up. So until then,

Go play!


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