Nostalgia is a powerful drug. Now that almost all the kids that were collecting the likes of Kenner's Super Powers and Mattel's Secret Wars toys are closer to 40 then they are their pre-teen years, there's a built-in audience for revisiting these memorable action figure lines. What's more, these eternally young-at-heart fans now have disposable income, and can afford re-issues that are solely for collecting and not playing.
While you may initially scoff at the idea of paying around $100 for a jumbo-sized Secret Wars Wolverine or Super Powers Superman, it's hard to quiet the child inside when you see Gentle Giant's modern replicas in person. Not only are the figures captured from the original plans, but the packaging too is rendered almost exactly as it was all those years ago. The value of how cool it will look on your shelf immediately begins to tip the scales from how much just one of these figures will impact your wallet. These figures, as well as Gentle Giant's Star Wars and Batman: The Animated Series lines, toe the line at the intersection of comic art and nostalgia.
Gamers of all ages and all console allegiances around the world have mourned the recent loss of Nintendo president Satoru Iwata. To celebrate his life and work, we’ve put together this collection of art inspired by Nintendo’s most famous character and most enduring mascot, Super Mario! Leave us your thoughts or happy Nintendo memories in the comments and let us know if there are other games you’d like to see us explore in a future Best Art Ever feature!
ThreeA has long been crafting original figures and collectibles based on the art and designs of co-founder Ashley Wood, but in recent years, the company has expanded its reach with a variety of licenses in comics, animation and films. That essence of Wood's aesthetic is still ever present though, and his influence still informs the design sense for many of ThreeA's upcoming pieces.
At San Diego Comic-Con this year, the company went all out with a major presentation of its upcoming slate. Normally included as a small part of IDW's booth, ThreeA's installation this year was set up like an art show, and showed off a great deal of promising figures in a range of scales and sizes. With figures from Frederator and 2000 AD, as well as Marvel, it appears the company is finally ready to make a big splash in the market beyond its original works.
In recent months, commemorative poster-creating powerhouse Mondo has expanded its reach to more realms of film-inspired memorabilia. While the Austin-based company has been pumping out vinyl soundtracks, VHS re-releases and clothing options, to name a few, Mondo has only just begun dipping its toes into the figure and statue game. However, this year at San Diego Comic-Con, Mondo made a big splash, offering early looks at a variety of new comic and movie-based pieces inspired by some of the most iconic characters and creators of our generation.
We spoke with Mondo's Creative Director of Toys and Collectibles, Brock Otterbacher, about the company's fresh slate of offerings, and how he hoped to stand out in an ever-crowding market. With new items based on Hellboy and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on the way, Mondo is clearly setting the bar high for itself. Factor in the wealth of artists and creatives at Mondo's disposal, and you have a company that seems poised to make a major dent in the collectible space (and wallets) in 2015 and beyond.
It's easy to get lost in the sea of companies offering statues, figures and other collectibles at San Diego Comic-Con, but it's awful hard to miss Kotobukiya's bright green banners wherever it sets up. With a display full of statues, the company's SDCC 2015 showings introduced new items a range of sizes and from a variety of licenses.
Though Square Enix had more than a fair share of existing product on display at SDCC '15, the company still managed to bring a few new pieces to the show, too. The Variant line has been a fairly big hit for Square, allowing for some more radical takes on familiar characters like Batman, Superman, Iron Man and Spider-Man. Though a tad pricier than most other collectibles featuring your favorite comic heroes, there's an undeniable personality in Square's products that you just don't see anywhere else.
Though the DC version of the Variant line didn't have much new, beyond yet another look at the incredibly divisive Tetsuya Nomura Catwoman, the Marvel line saw two Avengers leap into the fray. Black Widow joins Iron Man and Thor in the Play Arts series first, with Captain America coming some time after Natasha. Both are easily identifiable as the characters you've grown familiar with over their published lifespan, but feature that hallmark Squeenix style. Widow has a lot of detailing in her uniform, which makes up for how she's traditionally not outrageously outfitted. She's buttoned-up pretty well, too, and it's nice to see a Widow figure that isn't letting it all (or most of it anyway) hang out.
Mezco's One:12 Collective hasn't been around very long (just one released figure, and one shipping soon), but it's already made a major impression on collectors. Featuring incredible articulation, real fabric costumes and a wealth of accessories, Mezco has seemingly brought the same kind of quality and experience you'd expect from larger, more elaborate (read: expensive) collectibles to an affordable scale that fits in with most other figure lines.
As the first entry in the brand, the Dark Knight Returns Batman may have set an impossible bar for Mezco to meet again, but that doesn't mean the company isn't trying. At San Diego Comic-Con this year, Mezco revealed a partial upcoming slate of figures it has planned for 2016, including more DC heroes, and some interesting surprises. Though only in prototype form, the pieces look to continue what Mezco started, and evolve the One:12 Collective into more than just a flash in the pan.
When it comes to next-level collectibles from beloved comics and movies, few companies bring it as hard as Sideshow Collectibles. The company has long been crafting statues and figures for the refined collector from a wide range of licenses like Star Wars, Marvel, DC Comics and many, many more. As the official U.S. distributor for Hong Kong toy makers Hot Toys, Sideshow's portfolio of products is tough to top.
When we hit the floor at San Diego Comic-Con this year, we darted to the Sideshow booth. Partially to get there before it became to crowded to photograph the insane amount of products on display, but mostly because we had to see all the figures and statues that would break our wallets in the coming year. From Wolverine and Red Sonja to Star Wars and Transformers, Sideshow Collectibles SDCC '15 reveals will have fans of just about everything on Earth excited.
DC Collectibles kicked off San Diego Comic-Con 2015 with a preview event highlighting many of the bigger figures and series we'll be seeing over the course of the next 12 months. From continued support for the Icons and TV series lines to new Designer Series figures and Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pieces, there's a little bit of something for everyone in DC Collectibles' plans.
As cool as it was to see many of the new items on hand, the stars of the show were the characters getting the Darwyn Cooke touch as part of his Designer wave. Cooke's long been a favorite of mine, and his New Frontier figures from way back when are still some of the most stylish in my collection. Now that he's adding new takes on Batman, Supergirl, Adam Strange and Harley Quinn, I couldn't be happier. Combined with the expansion of the Batman: The Animated Series line to more obscure characters, 2015 and 2016 are shaping up to be a good time for clean, simple designs.
Yes, dear friends, July has arrived, and we draw ever closer to the ultimate comic book convention in the US, and quite possibly the world, San Diego Comic-Con. While many will venture the halls in hopes of seeing the first footage from the current crop of highly-anticipated blockbuster features, or to catch a fleeting glimpse of the hottest stars appearing in iconic roles, the real challenge of SDCC is reserved for the collectors. Yes, once a year, nearly every major toy, statue, replica and plush manufacturer releases a limited edition piece that can only be found on the floor of the San Diego Convention Center.
Devoted fans, aficionados and (unfortunately) re-sellers have been eagerly awaiting the chance to be one of the fortunate few who are able to obtain some of the rarest and most-coveted collectibles to release in a calendar year. Now, with just one week to go, we've gotten almost every last company to reveal its biggest secrets. Collected here for you is a comprehensive list of not just what will be available, but where it will be available, and how much it will cost you (should prices have been provided). This is every comic book toy and collectible exclusive for San Diego Comic-Con 2015.
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