Many of you are familiar with HMXVeng from the Rock Band forums – he’s the one gently reminding you not to bump threads…or banning you for misbehaving. He’s also a great source of information on metal, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and the Dave Matthews Band…okay, maybe not that last one. We talked to Veng about the toys that inhabit his desk, his awesome Brütal Legend statue, and that pesky Dave Matthews poster behind his desk.
As a TMNT fan from the days of the cartoon, I was psyched to talk to Veng about his collections (both in color and black & white) of Turtles. He purchased the black & white ones for his desk, which were followed by a set of color ones from his wife. (Fun piece of advice: if you ever get outbid on an item on eBay near your birthday, check to see if it was your wife that outbid you for it.) Veng says, “The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was one of the very first comics I really got into way back when I was about ten…so over twenty years ago.”
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in color
Being a fan of the cartoon and movies, I had to ask the noob question, “why are all the color Turtles’ headbands the same color?” Master Veng had the answer – the comics were in black & white. He says, “They only changed the colors of the bandanas for the cartoon to differentiate them for the kids. You’ll also see [there’s] no pizza or anything.”
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in black & white
In addition to the two sets of Turtles, there is also a collection of Transformers toys made by a company called Kaiyodo. They’re made of really good-quality plastic and they’re modeled after the cartoon (not the recent movie series), but unfortunately they don’t actually transform.
Transformers by Kaiyodo
Veng also has a giant Eddie Riggs statue from Brütal Legend. He calls it, “amazing” and says, “It’s one of the most beautiful, if not game tie-ins, then statues I’ve seen. It’s really, really well-sculpted. It was a GameStop exclusive. I was really happy to have been one of the people that won one.”
Eddie Riggs statue
“The two other main action figures I have are from two animes that are really awesome, that still resonate. One is from Berserk – it’s this guy with the giant sword. I tend to buy action figures if I think they’re really, really well-made. And the other one’s Ken from Fist of the North Star. It’s probably one of the most violent things I’ve ever seen.” My response was, “Are those bullet holes in his chest?” I was grossed-out to learn that no, those were not bullet holes, but finger holes.
Berserk and Ken from Fist of the North Star figures
As with most HMX Desks, Veng’s desk has some Fish McGill art and his pictures from the Rock Band 2 credits. Then, of course, we come to the posters. There’s The Secret of Monkey Island poster, what Veng calls, “such a really well-designed game – great art, great gameplay, really funny.” Then there’s the infamous Dave Matthews Band poster. Veng tells us it was a “gift” from a former coworker, who also sent him a special edition vinyl of a Dave Matthews Band album. Why? Not because he’s a Dave Matthews Band Fan, but because the poster is, “the worst poster in the history of music posters. It looks like a collection of [driver’s] license photos.”
Dave Matthews poster aka the driver's license photo poster