Remembering the Dungeons and Dragons Cartoon 40 Years Later, and a Full Review of the Action Figure Release

The 80s Dungeons and Dragons cartoon is beloved by many, and it’s about time there’s toys for it! But are they worth the price?

Dungeons and Dragons Cartoon ClassicsAvailable to purchase on Hasbro Pulse

It’s tough to say if Hasbro release of the action figures for the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon was produced out of full respect for its anniversary or to say thank you for the fish. This series debuted Sept 17th, 1983 and back then, it was credited to TSR Inc. as the proprietary owners. Eventually, that company was sold to Wizards of the Coast in 1999, which in turn would later become part of this mega toy manufacturer’s family.

Just how well either company markets material that isn’t part of the game is worth researching. Here, instead of releasing these figures closer to the day of, they have been out since April 2023 with very little advertisement. I never saw anything on network television or in the pop culture online magazines I read. I knew of this product only because of industry news. As a result, the likelihood to see further products is very slim.

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Showdown in Yesteryear and its Amusing Anime Connection

The ne’er-do-well who leads this film is no stranger to realising where home is where the heart is in Showdown in Yesteryear.

Showdown In Yesteryear Wild West PosterNow playing on VOD (Amazon Prime, Google Play) Subject to geolocation restrictions.

Showdown in Yesteryear is an amusing title that made me think about the classic Star Trek episode, “Spectre of the Gun.” The set design and concept that’s presented isn’t in verbatim but as for what’s real or imagined, that’s up to Daryl Dumwoody (Jeff Grennell) to decide. The fact this work is set in the Wild West was enough for me to want to check it out!

This character is a nobody in a dead end job where he can easily get forgotten. After being dumped by his girlfriend and losing that work, he’s ready to end it all. But when a magical door appears before him–a common enough trope used in various anime, namely Suzume no Tojimari–it’s perhaps a sign for him to look into who he is deep inside. Instead, what he walks through is a portal to the past, his hometown some 120 years ago.

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Chronicling American: An Odyssey to 1947 and its Influence Upon the World

Not only are a few key figures well represented during this era, but also we see how certain historical moments rose during American: An Odyssey to 1947.

American An Odyssey to 1947 PosterNow Playing on VOD
Gravitas Ventures

The late 40’s is well represented in Danny Wu‘s American: An Odyssey to 1947. Not only is the socio-political climate expertly explored but also we see who the movers and shakers were for the time. That also includes how they affected each other. From the entertainment scene to the White House, the influence feels like something I would watch in a high school Social Studies class.

The reason I was drawn to this work is that I’m a huge fan of Orson Welles. His early life is well accounted for, and while I’m not expecting a complete biography, what’s told covers all the basics and perhaps a little bit more!

David Walsh, writing for the World Socialist Web Site, best sums up the entire film in the press release: “In a short period of time, [Wu] has developed an important understanding of some of the most vexing problems of the mid-20th century.” He also added that this film is evidence that “a new generation of artists, free from the cynicism and many of the prejudices of the past several decades, is emerging.”

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G.I. Joe: Wrath of Cobra Continues the Ongoing Battle!

The story behind G.I. Joe: Wrath of Cobra will excite some fans as will this be the final showdown?

GI JOE Wrath of Cobra Poster ImageFans of long running IPs can get a dose of what being an elite special force is like with G.I. Joe: Wrath of Cobra, a retro-style beat ‘em up side-scroller set in the legendary Hasbro owned universe. Developed Maple Powered Games and publisher Freedom Games, videogamers have to get ready for G.I. Joe’s biggest mission yet!

This game will be available on PC via Steam, Epic Games Store, and GOG as well as Nintendo Switch in Q1 2024, as revealed at The MIX Next, a showcase expo where indie developers can show off their works in progress.

From the Press Release:

This legendary franchise returns for arcade-style beat’em up action with Duke, Scarlett, Snake Eyes, Roadblock, and other beloved franchise favourites. Navigate land, air, sea, and even space through iconic locations like Cobra Island, the Pit, Cobra’s top-secret underwater base, and more as you thwart the devious Cobra Commander’s latest scheme to take over the world.

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“Parka” or Fur Baby? Sometimes You Have to be Careful in What You Love More in this Horror-Comedy

Sometimes, a pandemic can throw plans to release a short film out the window, but for those folks who love director Alrick Bursell’s The Alternate will find this work, co-directed by Marcella Cortland, a great diversion to set up the horror Halloween season that’ll be quick to come!

Parka Poster Final
Please see below for where this short film will soon be offered.

Before Alrik Bursell made The Alternate which I absolutely enjoyed (review link), this director worked on Parka. It’s a short film which is finally available to stream beginning Sept 13th, 2023, and it’s a great horror-comedy with a bit of an animal rights message added on top. The spin is very Stephen King. Or should I say it’s presented like one of Joe Dante’s horror films, namely Gremlins?

The premise is simple: Lauren Taylor excellently plays a well to do, stuck up socialite named Sara that can put Alexandra (from the classic Josie and the Pussycats cartoon) to shame. She claims to be a well-meaning activist in various circles, but the snarky attitude and what’s said foreshadows what’s still to come. After talking to her bestie, Josh (played by Ed Gonzalez Moreno), what they discuss is worth paying attention to. The direction by Bursell and Marcella Cortland really plays with emphasizing what’s important and also set up the expectations for later.

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