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Review: ActionToyMan Erie, PA

Today CBC stops by ActionToyMan in Erie, PA. This little slice of heaven is a collectors paradise; boasting a plethora of genres including action figures, board games and, of course, comic books. The greatest thing that’s apparent upon entering through the poster laden doors is the fact that comics are more likened to a dessert rather than the main course of this proverbial meal. Every corner of the front room is a relived childhood moment; filled with toy after toy of favorite classics.

The Thundercats section is what first caught my eye. They actually had not one, but several of the Mail-Away Mumm Ra figures offered in 1986 as an exclusive bonus to the series 2 line. This fella didn’t have a backing card like most figures. Since he came in the mail, he would arrive in a plain shipping box. As you can imagine, most kids shredded the box immediately to get to that toy. I had to have it so, with a quick negotiation, I broke the ice and purchased this piece for a fair $10.

Next, I came across a sweet 1977 Superman Mego with the box. The box was in average condition and the Mego had a good bit of solid play over the years, but for a $100 I thought it was a great price. These figures are getting quite hard to find complete in any shape. I negotiated on the Mego but quickly abandoned it after it was clear there was no room on the deal and I was really there for comics.

After admiring the ultra cool 1985 Battle-Cat Spring Bouncer, a $12,000 super rare He-Man Collectible, I decided to wrap-up my childhood fantasizing and head from the main room to the back of the store for the comics.

This secondary room is actually just as big as most small shopping center comic shops with plenty of comics to sort through and search. A few things stood out right away though from my initial survey of “the goods”. New issues are not sold here. This store deals only in vintage books; most of which are $1.

The walls are lined with “better books” all the way around the room. I say “better books,” because it would be plain wrong to call it a “key wall.” The overwhelming truth I found in this room is that the bins were well searched and the deals, if they ever existed, were gone.

This my friends is what I am going to label a “filler store.” This is a great place to go if you need to complete a vintage run or want to pop by occasionally in the hopes of netting a deal out of newly acquired bulk stock. But, it wouldn’t be a solid LCS. As this store goes, toys are the main meal and the comics, although still considered a treat, are merely acceptable. It’s kinda like eating a banana instead of chocolate. You enjoy it once you start, but it’s not what you were looking for to satisfy that sweet tooth.

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