Well another May is about to close and already many of us are turning our attention to what is next. As your humble Toy Maniac I have noticed huge gaping holes in the Transformers aisle as well as the redundant G.I. Joe figures still cluttering the racks. Target already has a sign up for Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen toys set to debut on May 30th so look for them everywhere starting this weekend. There will not only be some great new bots for the movie but plenty of classic bots as Hasbro celebrates Transformers 25th anniversary (see my Toy Fair coverage of the Revenge of the Fallen toys).
I thought I would spotlight the two best movie action figures of the month and the single worst one. The only criteria for this list are that they must be from a summer movie in May. The three big summer movies for the month of May were X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Star Trek and Terminator Salvation. Sadly there is no Robert Langdon figure, yet. Of course I will be looking at sculpts and points of articulation. More importantly I will be looking at the performance of the actor, his effect on whether or not I would buy the figure and his the long term effect in pop culture. After all, these are more than just figures they are tributes to the actors and their performances.
The Best of May:
Last week I spotlighted several of the new San Diego Comic Con exclusives (see column). However in naming only three NECA Terminator figures worth buying I struck a nerve with someone at Sideshow Collectibles. They promptly sent me an email pointing out their Hot Toys 12 inch line based on Terminator Salvation which they are distributing. Originally I blew these figures off as too expensive. In this economy who really needs a 12 inch doll of Christian Bale as John Connor (see image) in what will probably be marked as one of his worst and soulless performances. Don’t get me wrong. The Hot Toys figure is incredible but I’d rather call it a post apocalyptic Bruce Wayne than a John Connor after watching that movie. Thank you, no John Connor for me. The T-600 (see image) is neat but despite it’s at 14 inch tall frame and cave man like appearance it just isn’t the T-800.
The Hot Toys Marcus Wright (see link for details and my gallery for more pictures) on the other hand is the true standout. Beginning with all the incredible details and various costumes Marcus Wright can be dressed in Hot Toys has really outdone themselves with its appearance. The likeness is uncanny but the main reason why this figure resonates over Christian Bale’s John Connor is that Sam Worthington put everything into the character. If anyone deserves to be immortalized from that movie it is him. The Hot Toys action figure does just that. Thankfully this will not be the last time we see Worthington as he is already set to appear in James Cameron’s Avatar(2009) and the new version of Clash of the Titans (2010). Action figures to follow, I am sure.
I wish to coin a phrase here in my toy column: the Summer of Spock. Sure most of us can barely remember the movies in May when we get to late July but this summer started off with a bang. That bang was the return of Spock. Leonard Nimoy’s Spock, or Spock Prime as someone else coined, finally made a return to the big screen after eighteen years. Too bad Indy’s return last summer wasn’t as triumphant. Any Spock figure, even Playmates’ clunky six inch figure, Spock Prime or Zachary Quinto’s Spock are fine additions to pop culture, Star Trek and your collection. The two 12 inch figures are by far the best Spock likeness out there but as I said before any Spock figure is great. As May closes let us all continue to enjoy the Summer of Spock.
THE WORST OF MAY:
Deadpool was the character we that got many of us crazy for X-Men Origins: Wolverine. The icing on the cake of course was that Ryan Reynolds was playing him. Sure he wouldn’t be all decked out in his traditional garb but it would be Deadpool up there on the big screen. He was up there for all of about ten minutes. Now I know this is an origin story and Wolverine’s at that but it was all a big tease. The Hulk Vs Wolverine’s Deadpool is the best realization of the character to date even if he was only animated. The truly sad part is that Ryan Reynolds doesn’t even get a Ryan Reynolds Deadpool action figure. He gets the Weapon 11 “Deadpool” action figure. I am not saying the whole cast deserves a figure, certainly not Will I Am, but Reynolds stole the show in his brief appearance. The X-Men Origins: Wolverine Deadpool action figure by Hasbro has to be, in my opinion, the worst figure of the month. Not only was the character blah but he did nothing for the story except wipe Wolverine’s memory. Honestly, was anyone terrified when he walked on screen? No. Deadpool even perpetuated a faux pas by having the classic heel and hero team up happen in the first movie. Sadly this figure is everywhere and the far more traditional and superior figure (see gallery) is already hard to find. X-Men Origins: Wolverine’s “Deadpool” (aka Weapon 11) is the dead duck figure of May.
Your Deadpool Scene after the Credits of X-Men Origins: Wolverine:
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