I remember when I was kid there was nothing like getting a new action figure for my birthday or Christmas. The earliest memory I have is getting a Lion-0 action figure and thinking about how much it looks just like the cartoon. It had the Sword of Omens and Claw shield. There was very little articulation but it didn’t matter. What mattered was that it was a tangible piece of something I really enjoyed and could make my own stories about. I remember my brother and I would get these encyclopedia books(the Internet before the Internet) my parents had and using them to make mazes and hideouts for our action figures.
Now that I’m older, I like to spread it around as far as what I collect. For a little while in college I collected TCG cards from series like Yu-Gi-Oh, Vs. System and Magic the Gathering. Later I started to build up a pretty nice collection of PS2 games. Once I moved to Austin I started reading comics pretty regularly. I began to frequent a local shop called Austin Books and Comics. I was going so frequently the owner began to recognize me as I walked in and knew to grab my pull list. I was buying pretty much everything Marvel was putting out from 2007 to 2011. Soon I began to digitize my collection and no longer had to go to the comic shop. Digital comics are great, but it can’t replace the feeling of going into a store and buying something tangible so I began to look for something new to collect. Around this time I was also watching a lot of Optibotimus transformer figure reviews. I wasn’t buying them yet because I thought I was getting too old for that kind of stuff. It wasn’t until I went into a Walmart and happened to see a Generations Wheeljack on clearance for 8 bucks and had a pang of nostalgia about one of my favorite cartoons growing up. I don’t remember getting any Transformers when I was a kid but my neighbor across the street had a Trypticon that he brought over to my house once and we played with it in my driveway. Buying Wheeljack started me on a new road of collecting that eventually got me into Marvel Legends. These things are awesome! Mostly faithful recreations of characters I have been reading about for most of life now in the palm of my hand. The first Marvel Legends figure I ever purchased was the Hit Monkey wave Archangel. This is, hands down, my favorite character and favorite piece in my collection. It just gives me that euphoric feeling of nostalgia whenever I pass it or pose it.
That feeling is at the heart of why I collect. That good feeling of finding a figure at retail or on eBay for a great price or talking to like-minded individuals who share the same interests. I don’t know what I’ll add next to my collection, but it will most definitely be something that gives me that nostalgic feeling.