Tag Archive: Toy Hunter


pop-culture-quest

Mark Hamill.  Jedi, Joker, and Trickster.  He’s my favorite genre celebrity, and in his first episode of his new pop culture collectibles series, Pop Culture Quest, Hamill hosts popular DC Comics artist and exec Jim Lee.  Pop Culture Quest is a new series on the pay network Comic-Con HQ, but you can watch the entire first episode below.

Pop Culture Quest is a load of fun, and is similar to past pop culture collecting shows reviewed here at borg.com like Travel Channel’s Toy Hunter, and Syfy Channel’s Hollywood Treasure.  This new series may top those series simply because of the access to Mark Hamill.  Hamill–who we all know as Luke Skywalker, the voice of the animated Batman series’ Joker, and both the classic and current The Flash TV series’ villain The Trickster–hosts the show with a sidekick Muppet fellow named Pop.  Hamill has a good sense of humor and proves to be not only every nerd’s idol, but a card-carrying nerd himself.  Hamill knows his pop culture, as highlighted by his detailed knowledge of the history of DC Comics as he browses the West Coast DC headquarters.  He’s also a solid interviewer, and reminded me of the poise in interviewing guests that William Shatner exhibited on his short-lived interview series Shatner’s Raw Nerve.

cj-bunce-as-luke-trooper

Photo of your humble borg.com Editor.  What does it mean when you start to look like your idol?

Episode 1 follows Hamill as he tours the DC offices and talks shop with Jim Lee.  Lee and Hamill agree to swap Hamill a sketch of The Joker in exchange for a voice message by Hamill that we get to watch performed during the coda for the episode.  It’s good stuff all around.

Check out this first episode of Pop Culture Quest:

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Wheaton Binderup McDaniels at Planet Comicon 2014

Why are you here?

To read?  To learn something?  To kill time?

OK, not why are you “here” at this website.  Think Big Picture:  Why are you here?  To narrow the gap between the rich and the poor?  To help people?  To have fun?  To create?

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Darryl McDaniels from Run-DMC, who we met at Planet Comicon last year, asked himself that question after returning to a hotel after a night on a European tour.  He’s pictured above with Wil Wheaton and my pal William Binderup.  McDaniels asked himself that simple question and wrestling with that question set him on a path that he recounted to a crowd of college students years later.  National Public Radio located an audio recording of that talk that they re-broadcast this past Wednesday night.

The result is a great story, and may serve as inspiration for anyone suffering from depression, anyone who was adopted, and it surprisingly serves as a great message about the power of fandom.  It also should cause you to consider the possibility that you can do anything you want to do with your life, and sometimes you may even surprise yourself if you aim high.  Maybe there’s more to who you are, who you like, and what you know–and don’t know–about yourself.

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Hembrough goes through a Star Wars cache

Winding down its second season on the Travel Channel, the reality series Toy Hunter is the exception to the rule when it comes to a TV series focusing on nostalgia.  Exciting in the same way fans of Antiques Roadshow hang onto to every word as someone from Albuquerque brings in that old chair they found in a trash heap for appraisal, Toy Hunter edges out comparable series when it comes to discovering why humans are so fascinated with nostalgia and popular culture.

It’s all thanks to the very likeable host, Jordan Hembrough, a toy collector and toy seller whose love for toys from the 1970s and 1980s is infectious.  His sincerity and honest brokering in working deals with folks who have contacted him across the country to pick through and make offers on their own toy hoards, often haggling over items as low as five dollars to items to thousands of dollars.  When you watch comparable fun series like the Syfy Channel’s Hollywood Treasure, you look past the staged bartering, and efforts to sucker some seller into selling an item for far less than Profiles in History would sell something at auction, and enjoy the wow factor of the screen-used props and costumes that are the targets of the purchase.  There is no awkwardness to look past on Toy Hunter, as Hembrough often will increase the amount he is paying to a buyer when the buyer’s offer is unfairly low, and Hembrough will flatly tell the seller upfront how much of a profit he expects to gain in his sale down the line.

Toy Hunter Jordan and USS Flagg

Another comparable series subject-wise is Comic Book Men, which Toy Hunter easily surpasses for the wow factor and fun factor.  The reality TV mean spiritedness and staged antics that often accompanies Comic Book Men is not needed with Toy Hunter.  Toy Hunter is closer to Antiques Roadshow in that regard–a completely fun, exciting and nostalgic show that can appeal to anyone whether you saved toys from being a kid, wish you had, or are a buyer or seller yourself.

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