Friday, February 28, 2014

Action Figure Barbecue: Toylines Missing in Action for 2013


     By now you've hopefully read my list "My Top 10 Toylines of 2013". If not, check it out first then head back over here. This is something I started doing last year to address toylines that appeared on the top 10 list the previous year but have dropped off of the most recent list (here's last years list in case you're interested). So, what toylines did I go crazy over in 2012 that didn't make my list in 2013? Find out after the break...




Arkham City by DC Collectibles



     This line really should have been on my 2013 list. Heck, I probably should include the Arkham Origins stuff here as well and just call this the "Arkham" line. While there weren't as many figures released, DC Collectibles released some great characters like Talia al Ghul and Deadshot in the excellent Arkham style along with a new Bane, Solomon Grundy, and the Abramovici twins. So, why didn't these guys make the list? Two reasons, the first being quality control. During last year's top 10 I did mention some minor QC issues with the Arkham figures. During the first half of 2013 those minor QC issues became major ones. Talia and Deadshot both broke on me right out of the package. While DC Collectibles has really cleaned up their act and improved their product during the latter half of 2013, this was a major deterrant againt me praising this line. The second issue is that DC Collectibles packaged new characters like each of the Abramovici brothers and the new Bane with a previously released figure. The repacked figure was also not repainted in any way nor did they include accessories, so selling them wasn't really an option. Lame, DC Collectibles. Next year looks better, though, I'm happy to say. So far, they're rivaling NECA for my favorite company of 2014.


DC Comics Bishoujo Collection by Kotobukiya


     I loved this line of statues last year but 2013 didn't have any new releases except for the SDCC exclusive "Unmasked Harley Quinn exclusive. A prototype Black Canary was shown at Toy Fair and seems to be slated for next year along with an armored Wonder Woman, so hopefully the line will regain steam next year. I want Zatanna, a new Catwoman, and Batwoman, stat!







Evil Dead 2 by NECA

    Nothing else has been mentioned about this line, although I think we always assumed it was going to be pretty limited. I was hoping that NECA might have tried to release something from 2013's Evil Dead or a version of Ash from the original film as an SDCC exclusive, but no such luck. It does seem that 2014 will see a Mego styled Ash, however, that actually looks pretty impressive. Megos aren't really my cup of tea but if I encounter anything with the plastic visage of Bruce Campbell out in the wild, I'm highly inclined to by it.



Gears of War by NECA
    
     Here's another line that's not on the list simply because it ended. While NECA put out some 1/18th scale figures, I just wasn't inclinded to buy them since they only made a few different characters. This was a great line and I'm surprised not too much popped up for Gears of War: Judgment (nothing much that I can remember, anyways).

Marvel Select by Diamond Select Toys


     From what I can tell and from the few figures I picked up, Marvel Select had a great year. Venom and Gambit were fantastic (I own them) and other releases like the Iron Man 3 series and Ultron also looked excellent. I think this line being left off of the list this year was simply A. I'm not that big of a Marvel collector and B. There were just too many other lines I had more of a connection to. So all in all, Marvel Select had a great year but just flew under my radar. Maybe if I had been a bigger fan of Iron Man 3.









Rocky by NECA


     Ready for the same song and dance again? No new releases this year. While I picked up the awesome "Bloody Spit" Rocky, I'm 95% certain that he was released in late 2012. I really wish NECA would give this line a few more releases (Tommy Gun, Mason "The Line" Dixon, Rocky from Rocky Balboa, and Paulie's robot from Rocky IV) but it seems this line has faded into legend.






SLUG Zombies by Jakks Pacific



     It grieves me to put this line on list, but sadly it seems to have been canceled in 2013 and no new figures have been released. I loved this line with all of my heart and it was probably one of the toylines I enjoyed collecting the most. I was thrilled this October to discover three of the very rare series one figures in a book store on a shelf of Halloween toys, but that was all the SLUG Zombie goodness I experienced in 2013. I still don't understand how an inexpensive line of zombies failed right now, considering every retailer wants cheaper toys and everyone and their mother loves zombies at the moment. It's a true shame.



     Well, that's all for the 2013 installment of Toylines Missing in Action! While four of these lines probably aren't coming back (Rocky, Gears of War 3, Evil Dead II: Dead by Dawn, and S.L.U.G. Zombies), the other three could still possibly return. DC Collectibles seems pretty committed to the Arkham series and has lots more figures releasing this year. The same with Marvel Select, although we'll see if I get back into a Marvel kick. Maybe this year, as I loved Captain America: The First Avenger and have high hopes for Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Kotobukiya also seems like it has more DC Bishoujo figures in store for this year, so hopefully those girls will make the list again. We'll see what 2014 holds!

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