Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Assemblage of Plastic Figure Aficionados ( TAGCOM 2013 )

We all have different ways to deal with stress. Some go on vacation, meet with old friends over beer and videoke or shop for new items. Some people find peace of mind in buying new shoes, designer bags, clothing and in some weird way, new toys.

While today's economy will make you double-think of buying something "senseless" just to rekindle your second childhood, there is a sense of awe, amazement and wonder when you buy your favorite cartoon character when you were just 6 years old or your favorite superhero, immortalized in plastic.

I always have that feeling when I would go on my usual toy-hunting sprees on the yearly toy conventions or when going to Toys R Us, Toy Kingdom or the famous Greenhills Shoppesville place. I was hoping to get that same feeling or get some good toys to update my collection when I attended the 6th TAGCOM Toys and Hobbies Convention at the Robinsons Midtown Mall Atrium last Sunday, April 7, 2013.

Wow. Imagine my disappointment. TAGCOM 2013 was the "dryest" toy-selling event that I've ever been to. And I've been to a lot.

So there I was, I took the LRT ride and went down on the Pedro Gil Station. I heeded the handful of warnings made by fellow toy collectors to not to go there as it is "walang kwenta". "ang tumal" and "isang oras LANG ako umikot tapos umuwi na". I thought I could use the "down time" and check out what's new  around the toy-collecting community.

As usual I expected a huge crowd when I entered the mall, especially since Sunday is reserved for cosplay competition. For those not in the know, cosplay is "costume play", where you "dress up" as your favorite character ranging from anime, cartoons, videogames, comic books and even famous people ( if audiences would get it, that is. ). There is a very large community on cosplay, believe it or not. There are avid followers of famous cosplay personalities. ( read: stalker )

I shrugged the cosplay-lovin' crowd as I am not much of a fan and went straight to the several tables selling their toys. There are hot wheels, DC Universe Classics, Marvel Legends, McFarlane, Lego, Barbie, Gundam, NECA, Revoltech, FIGMA, Monster High, Hasbro, Tomica and so forth. Yet despite the many categories, after 30-40 minutes I already went to the last table and said "YUN LANG??!!!" There were a couple of "usual-merchants-that-are-always-present-at-conventions" that are notably absent, like Comic Odyssey, "that Anything-Coca Cola-related-merchant", and RADJJ Toys ( the latter if I'm not mistaken got bad raps from collectors so was booted out for the convention ) and 3 spots were selling make-up, wigs and the like for the cosplay community.

Honestly, there wasn't much to buy, either I've already bought that kind before or there really wasn't much to choose from. I only bought 3 hot wheels, a Marvel Legends Nightcrawler figure and a DC Universe Classics Cheetah to complement my recent Wonder Woman figure. All costs only 1080php. Wow. Usually I would spend 2-4k on these conventions, but I was ( pleasantly ) surprised with my few hauls. Heck, I could have gotten more when I would go to Shoppesville instead.

I wanted to check out the displays as well, but I wasn't able to as there was a huge crowd gathering since the cosplay competition has already started. I tried to check the displays a couple of times, but I really wasn't able to. If I went a bit earlier, I would have seen them. Alas, I had to resort to checking it out at my Facebook friend's photo album.

( credits go to fellow collector Joshua Parreno Basa for the following pics of the display cabs. click to  enlarge )
hairy wolverine

custom jordan figures
film props...
20k barbie for boys hehe peace. 

doomsday vs superman 

There was also a competition for Gundam-maker enthusiasts, there were a handful of collectors sharing their stories but I don't know much about them to appreciate it as much as I appreciate Marvel Legends.

All in all, I got some good finds but the event is very disappointing for my taste. Here's hoping that June's Toycon would make up for it.

- "the king"

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