Wizard World: The Toronto Comic Con

Wizard World Toronto goes down later this month, March 26th, 27th and 28th and it’s bringing a ton of amazing guests with it.

From the world of comics, it welcomes Gail Simone (Wonder Woman, Deadpool), Cameron Stewart (Catwoman, Batman and Robin), Adi Granov (Spider-Man, Iron Man), Ty Templeton (She-Hulk) and many more. But as most conventions do nowadays, they’re also welcoming a ton of guests from movies and television. Notable named include Doug Jones (Hellboy I & II, Pan’s Labyrinth, Fantastic Four), Gena Lee Nolin (Baywatch, Sheena), Kandyse McClure (BSG), Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters), Gil Gerard (Buck Rogers) and dozens of other personalities from everything from the WWE to the Amazing Race to America’s Next Top Model.

There are also going to be gaming pavilions (Warhammer fans, take note!), special signings from the stars and some very cool panels. To name a few: Q&A with World War Z author Max Brooks, I Saw You On TV (featuring reality TV stars), a screening of The Wild Hunt, a KICK ASS panel (That’s the movie, not an adjective) and a Battlestar Galactica Q&A.

Naturally, we at CmdStore.com will be there with a ton of figures, statues, playsets and other items on sale so if you’re headed down there, be sure to check us out!

The Con takes place at Toronto’s Direct Energy Centre, which you can learn more about here.

If you’re nowhere near Toronto, never fear! Check out the Wizard World Blog to hear more about the many conventions they run across the continent–you might just get lucky!

The Brand New CmdStore.com!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Hey there! Have you checked out the brand new CmdStore.com? If you hadn’t already noticed, we’ve completely revamped our website and stremlined it so it’s more convenient. The buttons are bigger, the cart is easier to see as you load it up and the featured items will be changing more frequently, too, showcasing the newest and coolest of the toys we list.

Even better, we’ve also added a brand new LIVE CHAT applet up at the top of the page. When it says ‘ONLINE’ (during our regular business hours), you can click on and chat live with a member of our staff who’s ready and waiting to answer any of your questions. Give it a shot any time you need some advice or answers about anything we offer!

Enjoy the new site and happy shopping!
The CmdStore.com Staff

CmdStore’s Holiday Shipping Schedule

Over the Holiday break, CmdStore‘s staff will be taking a little break!

Naturally, our online store (Website) will remain open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but the shipping department will be closed from the 24th to the 25th and then the 31st until January 4th, 2010. All orders received during that period will be processed and shipped out on December 30th and January 5th, so feel free to continue filling your cart with the season’s hottest items.

Additionally, our offices will be closed during the Christmas holidays from December 24th to January 5th. E-mails will still be viewed and answered on a regular but limited basis during that period, but the new live chat department will be offline during this period.

Happy holidays!
The CmdStore Staff

Our Top Items this Christmas!

Hey there!

Here’s a look at the TOP 10 ITEMS on CMDSTORE.COM this Christmas! Is the Holiday Season creeping up a little too quickly, leaving you without ideas for what to get the fanboy or fangirl in your life? Take a look at the hottest toys we’ve got this Christmas, plus all the deadline dates to follow if you want your purchase to arrive right on time!

1) BAKUGAN : MAXUS HELIOS 7-IN-1
The most impressive Bakugan out there isn’t a single battle brawler, it’s the sum of seven! With this exclusive pack, you get six Bakugan that combine into a single Maxus Helios beast!

2) ZHU ZHU PETS
The latest craze to sweep this nation and others, we’ve got the four Zhu Zhu Pet hamsters, plus four accessories including the fun house and the Hamster City garage.

3) MARVEL SELECT: RED HULK
The Exclusive Marvel Select Red Hulk has been very popular this year. It features great sculpting, impressive articulation and a variant head, plus a rubble-strewn base sure to look awesome on any toy shelf.

4) TWILIGHT & NEW MOON FIGURES
The juggernaut that is the Twilight series has left some very nice NECA toys in its path, featuring Bella, Alive, Jacob and, of course, the man himself: vampire Edward Cullen. Swoon!

5) STAR WARS CLONE TANK
Featuring Electronic lights and sounds, plus launchable weaponry and some truly cool design, Star Wars fans should be pleased to see this brand new Turbo Tank roll out!

6) TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN
Deluxe Class, Voyager Class, Robot Heroes and more! We’ve got everything from 2009’s biggest movie.

7) MCFARLANE’S HALO: SERIES 6
One of the biggest games of all time, the folks have outdone themselves in coming up with their toy line. Series 6 brings Brute Boyguards, Pure-form Floods and more!

8) SONIC ACTION FIGURES: SERIES 2
Sonic fans young and old will enjoy these figures, which bring together everyone from the Genesis years to Sonic’s rebirth with Nintendo. The new series features Yellow Super Sonic!

9) GI JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA
This one’s a line of toys for fans of the film, but it should also be very appealing to any GI Joe fans looking for a new take on their favourite characters.

10) GEARS OF WAR: SERIES 5 Check out Col. Hoffman, Boomer, a COG soldier and a Grenadier Beast Rider in this awesome new series based on the hit XBox game.

DEADLINE DATES

STANDARD SHIPPING

ALL of the USA: December 20th before 4pm EST

Ontario & Quebec: December 21st before 5pm EST

Central, West Coast & Maritimes: December 15th before 5pm EST

Europe: December 11th before 5pm EST

UPS EXPRESS SHIPPING

ALL of the USA: December 23rd before 4pm EST

ALL of Canada EXCEPT NWT and Nunavut: December 23rd before 4pm EST

Europe, South America, Australia and Asia: December 21st before 3pm EST

CmdStore.com 15% Off SALE! THIS WEEKEND!

Cyber-Monday Special!

This Thanksgiving weekend, we at CmdStore.com are putting our ENTIRE IN-STOCK INVENTORY on sale for 15% off the current price.

Everything from Zhu Zhu Pets to Gears of War , Transformers to the DC Universe , Marvel Select to Sideshow ; whatever the current selling price, you’ll save an additional 15%. Yes, this applies to items that are already on sale.

So check it out over at CmdStore.com. It’s the perfect time to fill out your collection, find that one toy you’ve been missing, get through your gift-giving list or just go all-out and snag yourself some pre-Christmas swag!

Coupon Code: cmdblog15
Expires: Monday, 11:59pm EST, November 30, 2009.
Spend over $20 on any In-Stock items
(Does not apply to pre-order items or gift certificates)

Just add the items you want (make sure you spend over $20 bucks before shipping) and apply the coupon code before completing the checkout. See you there!

CMDStore at Fan Expo!

CMDStore will have a booth at this year’s Fan Expo in Toronto, so if you’re planning on attending, make sure to look out for us!

We’ll be at Booth 827 with a ton of figures and collectibles, so be sure to check us out.

And if you’re around, we’ll be bringing an EXCLUSIVE to the convention: the First Appearance Sabretooth!

Collectible Toys for all Ages – Montreal ToyCon

Steve Bonanno Legends Action Figures

Steve Bonanno, with The Joker, at his Legends Action Figures store on St. Hubert Street

By AL KRATINA, Special to the Montreal Gazette

To some, collecting action figures might seem a childish pursuit. Disclosing that this article is being typed in full view of an Edgar Allan Poe toy and an entire shelf of Batman villains will likely not change such people’s minds. But Montrealers can discover for themselves how grown-up toy collecting can be by visiting one of many local toy stores, or by checking out Toycon tomorrow at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel near Trudeau airport.

“(There’s) a little bit of something for everyone,” says David Mark, the organizer of the convention and owner of Outremont’s Toys on Fire retail store. The convention will feature 30 local action figure dealers selling everything from Hot Wheels to Spider-Man toys, as well as six tables dedicated to creations from the Montreal LEGO Club.

But as Mark explains, action figures don’t always revolve around comics and Saturday morning cartoons. Subjects range from hockey players to William Shakespeare to a semi-flayed man hanging from hooks and birthing what appears to be a boil of maggots, designed by horror author Clive Barker.

In fact, Steve Bonanno finds that his Montreal store, Legends Action Figures on St. Hubert St., attracts mainly the male 18-35 demographic.

Like Mark, Bonanno is passionate about action figures, and estimates he has more than 4,000 toys in his personal collection. “I opened the store, because my collection was getting too expensive,” he laughs, as I shop for Marvel Zombies Minimates, tiny undead comic characters that make my bookshelves resemble a decaying landscape of LEGO figures.

Bonanno and Mark agree the more popular toys are generally tied to new movies or TV shows, but nostalgic throwbacks are also well-liked.

“Everything from the ’80s properties, like GI Joe, Transformers, they all made a comeback in the last couple of years,” Bonanno says. “(But) Star Wars (toys) outsell everything else.”

But even those not particularly interested in pitting Cobra Commander and Starscream against a mob of Tuskan Raiders might be interested in “art toys.”

“An art toy is a (figure) that’s not based on a cartoon or a game,” says Olivier Petitpas, who opened his camiondepompiers store on Ontario St. in 2007. “It’s more of an art object than a product advertising a different (medium).”

Some art toys feature paint designs and accessories created by various artists, often noted for work in other media. Popular art toy creators include U.S.-based Frank Kozic, who once designed posters for the grunge movement, and Italian artist/clothing designer Simone Legno, whose Tokidoki brand makes everything look like the result of Hello Kitty mating with a robot.

But other toys are simply sold as blank figurines, and used as a canvas to create a one-of-a-kind art by the new owner. These are often displayed at contests or exhibitions, like the ones Petitpas occasionally holds at his store.

Art toys, Petitpas says, tend to attract a different crowd than other action figures, which is why Petitpas won’t be exhibiting at Toycon. But though the world of art toys might not overlap with other action figures, both can be equally appreciated by a mature audience. Or so I keep telling myself, and my Minimates.

Toycon was held Sunday, May 3rd, 2009 at the Courtyard Marriott Hotel, 7000 Place Robert-Joncas, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission $4. Call 514-948-2627 or email montrealtoycon@gmail.com for more details on the next show.

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette