Shell-shocked that's about the only way to describe toy collectors these days. And that's largely due to the return of one of toydom's most beloved lines, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, courtesy of Playmates.
To say the Turtles took the toy world by storm a decade or so ago would be an understatement. Besides the insanely successful series of movies, comics, video games and cartoons based on the characters, Playmates sold over 245 million action figures, generating over $1 billion in worldwide sales from 1989 to 1993 alone. Now the martial arts masters are back, and they're just as eager to kick some tail this time around.
"Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was such a huge success in the late '80s and early '90s that Mirage, Playmates and 4Kids Entertainment felt there was a whole new generation of kids to tell the story of Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael and Michelangelo, that had never even heard of them before," says Vincent D'Alleva, Playmates' vice president of brand concepts.