A common theme in some of my favorite works of art, whether Liberty Leading the People, Albert Camus’s The Rebel, Doctor Who, Harry Potter, Rick and Morty, the two Star Wars movies that are any good, or Saga, is the theme of resistance. Loot Crate contributes to the art of resistance’s centuries-long pedigree with its “Revolution” themed subscription box, and it was with some excitement that I opened it, despite having little grounding in the Assassin’s Creed games. Also, Mr. Robot is on my radar for a possible binge-watch target, but I haven’t committed to that yet either. So, for me, this month’s Loot Crate was less an enjoyment of its particular franchises, and mostly a mediation on its theme of Revolution, a theme upon which I’m only too happy to meditate.
As the Assassin’s Creed movie is in theaters, there are two pieces of Assassin’s Creed merchandise lurking in “Revolution,” plus a digital download, and the box itself turns into a cardboard craft prop for one of the items.
First, there’s the exclusive Assassin’s Creed Aguilar Funko POP! vinyl figure which shows the 15th century assassin posed for his iconic leap of faith. This is a nice POP! figure in a non-standard stance that fans of the game or the movie will be happy to have in their collection.
This month’s Loot Pin is also an official Assassin’s Creed tie-in, and it’s paired with a code for a digital excerpt from Christie Golden’s Assassin’s Creed: Heresy novel. I really like this pin, as it’s not only distinctive but stylish, that says not “I’m an Assassin’s Creed fan,” but “I’m a fashionable Assassin’s Creed fan.” Like some other recent Loot Crate jewelry, both in the core crate and their focused crates, the designers created the illusion of the patina of age on this item, which fits the idea of a centuries old assassin’s cult token.
This month’s medieval interior refolds into a boxy church, and its diagram inside Loot Crate Magazine suggests that you allow your Funko POP! Aguilar to pose atop it as if the Assassin’s Creed character is ready for his leap of faith.
The exclusive Firefly Independents Patch made by Quantum Mechanix, according to the inside flap of its packaging, was created using Firefly series art and certified by the show graphic designer Dylan Hay-Chapman. I’ve never considered becoming a “browncoat,” but I’m a fan of the series, and receiving this has made me think about watching Firefly for a third time. Maybe after that, you might see me at a convention sporting this patch.
Nothing else in the crate speaks the language of resistance as much as the exclusive Mr. Robot FSociety t-shirt made by Loot Crate, Inc, which has the FSociety logo that uses the iconography of the Guy Fawkes mask, best known from the historic “Gunpowder Plot” to blow up the House of Lords and the graphic novel V for Vendetta, that has gone on to inspire not only Mr. Robot, but also the real-life Anonymous, the Occupy movement, and anti-government forces all over the world. Make no mistake–this is a real political symbol that inspires people into action, and kudos to Loot Crate for putting it on a shirt–and USA for putting it on TV.
Next, we have an exclusive hardcover edition of Figure Fantasy: The Pop Culture Photography of Daniel Picard, which isn’t about the idea of revolution, but has a similar aesthetic, as it’s about the subversion of icons—Daniel Picard’s subversion of pop culture themes with action figure photography. Whereas Robot Chicken goes for the outre and the bizarre, Figure Fantasy opts for more intimate, Norman Rockwell-ian portraits, such as a Stormtrooper on the porch of his farm house, the Joker building a Lego Batman collection, Yoda texting, and Superman as a lifeguard. Not only do you get all that, but there’s also a Simon Pegg foreword, a Kevin Smith afterword, and a $25 coupon for sideshow.com.
Lastly, the highlight of this month’s Loot Crate Magazine was a six page feature (4 of text, 2 of photos) of a set tour to USA network’s Colony, which included interviews with cast members Sarah Wayne Callies, Josh Holloway, and Tory Kittles, as well as co-creator and showrunner Ryan Condal. There were also good pieces that recapped the generation-spanning plot of Assassin’s Creed, the history of hacking, and the ficto-history of Firefly‘s Unification War as well, plus a year’s retrospective called “Top Loot of 2016.”
The Revolution has ended, but until January 19th, you can order the Origins crate, which includes goodies dedicated to the inspirational origins of Superman, Captain America, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Donkey Kong. Those of you that know me from Twitter know that I’m a big Superman fan, so you can imagine how pumped I am to see the Origins crate.
— Loot Crate (@lootcrate) December 20, 2016
Loot Crate sent the review copy.