The one bright spot of the summer box office was the epic Marvel film “Guardians of the Galaxy.” The hit surprised everyone making half a billion dollars at the global box office solidifying helmer James Gunn’s film the one true runaway blockbuster of the season. Anchored by Chris Pratt’s performance as Peter Quill aka “Starlord,” fans of the comic book of past and its new Bendis written incarnation really dug anything GOTG. Heck, even the soundtrack vaulted to number one on the charts. Marvel Legends from Hasbro made the quick move to capitalize on the film’s success by releasing an entire wave of Guardians including a Build-A-Figure of scene stealer “Groot.” The wave even included a Nova and along with Rocket Raccoon were the hardest of the bunch to find. With a sequel already in sight, GOTG was the film to be a part of this summer. The ML figures were pure gravy on top of the incredible hype on the sleeper blockbuster that no one saw coming.
One thing DC figures were not known for in years past was excelling at making any Marvel Universe style 3 & 3/4” figures. Now, that has finally changed as fans gobbled up the new DC Multiverse waves of figures. The other-worldly figures, that is to say “movie and video game universe’s,” this new line from DC was the one that we have been waiting for. Finally, we have Michael Keaton movie Batman AND even an Unmasked variant complete with Keaton’s signature mug and brow. Throw that on top of SUPERMAN II General Zod (Terrence Stamp), Christopher Reeve Superman, Danny DeVito Penguin and Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman, both from BATMAN RETURNS and this line is a winner. Next up from the Multiverse: Arkham Knight figures including Red Hood, Robin, Scarecrow & Two-Face.
On top of the GOTG Legends, Hasbro hit us for a loop with a series of Exclusive Toys R Us figures that have seen an upswing as the summer comes to a close. Making it also a Build a Figure series, this time of Jubilee, X-Men fans are rejoicing at the new wave of mutants. This time around we get a revamped Cyclops, unhooded Wolverine, Stryfe, Magneto and a very hard to find mohawked Storm from the 80’s. It is a pretty sweet set if you can find them on the pegs. The BAF Jubilee is going for close to $100 on some eBay auctions and seems to be a figure that X-fans have been craving for a good long while.
Over thirty years in the making, from the forest moon of Endor, its the Empire’s Biker Scout with Speeder! The Black Series from Hasbro continues to churn out quality product for the Star Wars lover in all of us. This Biker Scout as seen in RETURN OF THE JEDI is already a big hit with collectors for its crazy accuracy and attention to detail. Die hard fins are picking up a few at a time to reenact and display their favorite scene from Episode VI. However it has become increasingly difficult to find in stores. It carries a relatively cheap price tag of just $39.99 if you are lucky enough to find it at retail. eBay prices seem to be consistently fetching in the sixty dollar range. Just another reason for toy fans to sign over their paychecks to the good people of Disney.
Having a big hit with their POP! Vinyl figures, FUNKO has expanded their universe with these new carded figures from the burgeoning company. Although these figures are not quite as sturdy as their Marvel & DC counterparts, it is great to see some of the most coveted TV and movie properties finally in plastic form. So far we have been given FIREFLY, BACK TO THE FUTURE and THE ROCKETEER and we can look forward to more this Fall with PULP FICTION & THE GOONIES. At around a $10.99 price point, fans have been jumping all over these new additions to the pop universe.