My first year at Toy Fair was quite a blast. I learned a lot about how to go about things (connect with companies earlier about appointments!) and had a great time despite not being able to see companies like Hasbro, LEGO, or Mattel. I still got around and was able to check out a lot of fun stuff. So here is a list of the top six things that really surprised me, or just blew me away from Toy Fair 2013.
1. NECA Michael Keaton 18″ Batman
Let’s face it, most sane people do not buy Hot Toys’ figures. Of course until now this was the only way to get a Michael Keaton Batman from the Tim Burton films. This is where NECA comes in. They heard the calls, people want the man, the myth, the legend Mr. Michael J. Keaton in large-scale action figure form. NECA heard the calls and they knocked him out of the park. In my best movie trailer guy voice, “THIS SUMMER, MICHAEL KEATON RETURNS TO DON THE CAPE ONE LAST TIME!”
After his thrilling role as the police chief who works part-time at Bed, Bath, and Beyond in 2010’s “The Other Guys,” it’s great to see him back saving the streets of Gotham and doing it at 18 inches of height. We already knew NECA had an Adam West ready for the show because Warner Brothers like to spoil everything … little did I know when I walked into their booth that I would be greeted by Mr. Keaton.
He’ll be released this summer and will come with multiple hands and Bat-gadgets. Should be around $70 – $80 the same price as the other quarter scale figures. Which means you can get three NECA Batmen for every one Hot Toy. Take that!
2. Mezco Breaking Bad 6″ Figures
Television Shows don’t too often get action figures and when they do they usually blow. This year we’ve seen some TV love with McFarlane trying to improve on the abominations they put out in the first couple years of Walking Dead. NECA and Mattel will be doing their respective scales of the classic Batman series. Funko has the Walking Dead and Game of Thrones … but those are more novelty than serious stab at action figures, not to take anything away from them either, Funko is awesome!
Anyway, Mezco rocked the world when they announced they had Breaking Bad. Then they rocked the world again when we saw the six-inch Walter White. Then they rocked my world when I saw their Breaking Bad display with both Heisenberg and Labsuit Walter. The figures look incredible. The likeness to Bryan Cranston is incredible.
3. Mattel Filmation Subscription
We all kind of knew it was coming but stayed pessimistic due to the timing of the announcement. Even when we got the leaks prior to Toy Fair people still doubted it asking how Mattel could start a subscription so late in the year? Well they did it, and in the process successfully made this the most expensive year of Masters of the Universe Classics ever produced.
Looking past the second mortgage I’m taking on to afford MOTUC and their castle, the Filmation subscription program is a dream come true for a couple of reasons. First it gets a sizable number of characters out before the eventual demise of the line. Second, doing Filmation is basically 100% characters that have never seen plastic before. While the main line will continue to work on the vintage classics, the Filmation line will get us all these characters that have never had toys before!
They also had the decency to make it a subscription so that we don’t have to pay double shipping on sale days. In an ideal world (I wouldn’t even say ideal, in a regular non-Matty world) they would have worked things out so shipping wasn’t such a pain in the ass. But, whatever about the logistics, we are getting a whole lot of cool figures out of this.
4. Playmates TMNT Classics Bebop and Rocksteady:
Since every fucking reveal was spoiled prior to the show this seems like old news but we have really only known about this duo for a couple of weeks. Yet it seems like everyone has an opinion already on the two of them. For me, I had to see them in person, and when I finally got a good look over them I was impressed.
I don’t like the TMNT Classics turtles, I find them way too big to really fit in with anything. On the other hand I think the size, look, and articulation of Bebop and Rocksteady is perfect. They are a mix of both the cartoon and vintage (it’s weird to say the original TMNT line is vintage) looks. This seems to be a polarizing issue as people who wanted a specific look on either medium are not happy. I don’t have a huge allegiance to either look so I think these look like great toys, and will be happy to have them battle my NECA turtles.
5. NECA Predator Series 10 – Kenner Throwback Wave:
This one I did not expect, and then when I saw it I was amazed at how much I loved them! It’s funny how reusing parts can turn out really shitty if the company tries to hard to reuse a part that just doesn’t fit the character. We’ve seen it before because companies like Mattel and Hasbro have almost made reuse a requirement. On the other hand when done correctly it can be extremely effective as has been done with the Predator line by NECA. They reused bodies and parts when needed, but also added new parts when necessary.
The colors will make these guys stand out in the collection. The throwback packaging is nice too, but I open things right away so it’s not a big concern to me. After series eight and nine tackle Dutch a total of four times (another dream come true by the by) this is quite the departure. And that departure is exactly what I needed before going back into Alien vs Predator territory.
I do hope this wave does well because I’d love to see them go back and complete the Kenner tribe. Or even if they want to go further make those insane Aliens they had back then like the gorilla, bird, etc.
6. The Bridge Direct 3 3/4″ Dwarves:
What is the Hobbit without Thorin’s company of dwarves? I asked myself this many times throughout the year after The Bridge Direct’s first foray into the Hobbit license. They were able to get Thorin, Kili, Fili, Balin, and Dwalin but we were still missing a sizable chunk of the team. This has all been corrected as they have the rest of the roster ready to rock later this year, and had the paint masters available to peruse at Toy Fair.
The nice thing about the remaining dwarves is that they have more “out there” designs than the ones currently available. I’d say my favorite of the bunch has to be Bombur. He’s very accurate and completely fun looking, that little plump dwarf warms my heart. They have captured all of the dwarf’s personalities in the figures and barring some disaster the figures are going to surprise a lot of people.
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6 thoughts on “Toy Fair 2013: The Top Six Reveals You Don’t Want to Miss!”
Kenner Predtors look sick… I also hope for some wacky aliens like the bull alien
That would be cool, but since the Kenner Predators could be done with the tools they had that’s probably why they did them. Not sure if they want to dedicate a ton of resources to one-off crazy Alien sculpts.
But at least we are getting some kick-ass Aliens along with the Queen this year. People have also been bugging the actor that played Vasquez over twitter so there may be another marine down the line. Should be a good year for the Alien/Predator universe.
Good to hear you had fun at the show! I saw almost zero of the show this year, with almost all of my time being locked away in secret meetings for work. That said, I have to say 2013 turned out to be my best NYTF experience ever.
Thanks Phil! Great to hear everything went well with you as well. It really was eye-opening figuring out what I should be doing at a trade show, figuring out the protocol and all. I didn’t bring business cards, or schedule appointment ahead of time so that kept me out of a few places. But just walking the floor with the press badge I would get pulled in to see a lot of cool companies I would have never thought to stop in a million years. Plus there were some cool places that demoed some stuff for me I’d seriously consider getting for my son or daughter.
All in all it was a really great experience, and I look forward to next year’s event a little wiser.
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