If you can sense that feeling of excitement, panic and salt in the air, you know San Diego Comic-Con is near. There's just something about this annual gathering of fans, creators, actors and cosplayers that makes the summer that much more special. Oh right, it's all the toys.
In addition to being host to all manner of awesome announcements, reveals, teasers and trailers, SDCC is also one of the biggest collectible events of the year. Every company big and small rolls out their best and most limited in the hopes of capturing your attention and those dollar dollar bills, y'all.
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 (where prices have been provided). This is every comic book-related toy and collectible exclusive for San Diego Comic-Con 2016.
Following in the footsteps of Kotobukiya's Marvel Now Avengers and Marvel Now X-Men ArtFX+ statue series, the Japanese company will introduce an Amazing Spider-Man line. The upcoming statue set was actually teased at Toy Fair earlier this year, but there wasn't much to go on beyond knowing it was in the works. This week, Kotobukiya not only unveiled the first statue in the set, but also the concept art for the entire wave.
Designed by Stefano Casalli, the Amazing Spider-Man ArtFX+ series will include Peter Parker, Miles Morales, Spider-Gwen, Spider-Man 2099, Venom, Carnage and Agent Venom. Like the other sets, the statues will be designed to fit together on display, though they can all stand on their own if you want. The line missing Spider-Woman and Silk isn't all that surprising, as typically the ArtFX+ lines like this have been limited to just seven pieces in total. Seeing Miles included in the set along with Spider-Gwen is still nice, and a great acknowledgement of their contributions to the Spider-legacy.
When decorating your home, you can hardly go wrong with adding a tyrannical alien to your sitting room. Say what you will about sconces and fine throw rugs really tying the room together; if you don't have a power-mad, purple despot as the focal point of your lounge, you just aren't living.
The Kotobukiya Marvel Universe Fine Arts Thanos statue is just the thing you're looking for though if you want to take my advice. Then again, I've been taking my own advice for years, and at this point there are more figures and statues around the house than there is empty space. But they do give the home some personality, and that's all you can really ask for.
It was only yesterday that I mentioned that there's a Batman statue to suit virtually any need you have, no matter which incarnation of Batman you most prefer. That said, I think we can all agree that you can never, ever have enough tributes to Bruce Timm's smooth, art deco design for the Dark Knight from Batman: The Animated Series.
As a result, I'm pretty excited to see Kotobukiya's latest statue, an animated style Batman that's going up for pre-order today. And really, while it would probably be enough to just make a statue that captured that look, Kotobukiya has gone the extra mile with their interchangeable parts, making this the first Batman statue that can give you a thumbs-up. Seriously.
In a few weeks, all the lead-up to Captain America: Civil War will finally come to a head. Long after the movie's release however, Kotobukiya will still be celebrating the big throwdown between the heavyweights late into the fall. Following up on the Hulk vs Hulkbuster and Batman vs Superman ArtFX+ statue series done previously, both Captain America and Iron Man will get new pieces meant to connect together to form one larger statue.
As with the previous works Kotobukiya has released in this style, Cap and Iron Man will be made available separately, with each captured in a pose that works well enough on its own. If you manage to snag both however, you get to create a nifty little diorama of Steve and Tony facing off in extremely close quarters.
I'll say this about Kotobukiya, when it gets a statue right, it really gets a statue right. The company's Fine Arts and ArtFX+ lines have been testaments to that fact for some time, and the upcoming releases planned for 2016 and beyond look to continue that trend. There are also some promising Bishoujo on the horizon, which might come as a bit of surprise given the hit-or-miss nature of the "beautiful girl" statues. That also includes me continuing to pretend the horror-themed branch of Bishoujo just doesn't exist.
For the past few years, Kotobukiya's teamed with Adi Granov for two different Marvel ArtFX+ series. The Marvel Now Avengers was a big enough hit that it spawned a similar wave based on the Uncanny X-Men that launched after the conclusion of the Avengers vs. X-Men event that altered the course of the Marvel Universe until Infinity altered it again, and then Original Sin, and then... you get the idea. There are still three more statues to release in the line, but at least the Uncanny X-Men will finally be united in ArtFX+ form just in time for Marvel's next big summer event to completely wipe them out again, probably. At least this set will let you imagine Wolverine is still alive, and he's got a snazzy Adi Granov design.
I have to admit, I was worried about this one. While Kotobukiya's had a string of really strong comic character Bishoujo figures, there have been some wild swings and misses from that line as of late. When the Spider-Gwen Bishoujo was first teased, there was no telling which way the figure would fall. Thankfully, Spider-Gwen seemingly gets the comic statues back on track and falls more in line with the Batwoman and Black Canary pieces rather than the Lady Deadpool and Starfire statues. The horror line is still a hot mess, but I'm pretending those exist in a vacuum somewhere far, far away.
I understand the point of the Bishoujo line is to show a Japanese approach to beautiful girls, but sometimes that concept just doesn't result in very good portrayals of these characters. Shunya Yamashita's renderings, while stunning, don't always translate to Western audiences. With Spider-Gwen being a teen hero, there was a chance this figure could have ended up on the wrong side of "beautiful." After seeing these production shots of the somewhat final statue, I'm impressed and pleased. Spider-Gwen doesn't have a lot of collectibles at the moment, and that her Bishoujo has come out this nicely is good news for fans.
Since the conclusion of The Dark Knight Returns, one of the most iconic images at DC Comics has been that of Superman versus Batman on a city street. It's become such a part of the history between DC's two biggest male heroes that the fabled fight has been a major part of the promotion for Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. The upcoming feature wears its DKR inspirations on its sleeve, despite protestations from the creatives that it has little to do with Frank Miller, Klaus Janson and Lynn Varley's 80s epic. You can hardly find a piece of merchandising from the film that doesn't feature Batman in the infamous armor suit. Superman of course looks the same because he's Superman.
Kotobukiya is the latest licensee to get in on the Batman V Superman hype train, though it's hardly unexpected. Koto's had a longstanding working relationship with DC Comics that's led to a number of statues in all sorts of sizes and styles. Recently, Kotobukiya's gotten into separate statues that work in conjunction with one another to create a diorama of sorts. Like the Hulkbuster and Hulk ArtFX+ statues from Avengers: Age of Ultron, the Batman and Superman statues for BVS will be offered on their own, but can combine to create one bigger piece commemorating the fight between man and "god."
Though New York Comic Con isn't typically a show where Kotobukiya reveals many new items, you can always count on the company to tease a handful of never-before-seen pieces. This year, the pickings weren't robust, but they will make fans of Koto's Bishoujo series for statues happy. While there were some nice Star Wars figurines at the booth as well, the primary source of new statues came from the "beautiful girl" series.
Both the Harley Quinn and Spider-Gwen teased with silhouette's back at SDCC were given the concept art treatment at NYCC. Harley will be represented by her New 52 Suicide Squad look, which we knew was coming, but is still slightly disappointing. The second version created by Amanda Connor and Jimmy Palmiotti is much more interesting, and doesn't make you want to cringe just by glancing at it. Shunya Yamashita's design does the best it can with what he's got to work with, but this piece is already shaping up to pale in comparison to the classic Harley Quinn.
One of the key sequences of Marvel's blockbuster Avengers: Age of Ultron was the knock-down, drag-em-out fight between the Hulk and Iron Man. For months, Marvel had teased the big throwdown in commercials and trailers, and the final fight in the film definitely delivered on the carnage and chaos one would expect of such a massive slugfest. While the version we got to see in theaters featured a slightly hazy-eyed, green Hulk doing all that damage, that wasn't always the plan. In fact, Hulk was supposed to turn a bit grayer when under the influence of Scarlet Witch.
Though that version never made it into the film due to the creative team finding it too jarring for audiences to see the Hulk drastically change color like that, the spirit of that change lives on through Kotobukiya's Avengers: Age of Ultron statue set. Already, Koto has released the normal versions of the Hulkbuster and Hulk set it produced, but a variant version of the Hulk is being offered as an exclusive through Entertainment Earth. Courtesy of the online retailer, we have an exclusive version of the Kotobukiya Avengers: Age of Ultron Rampaging Hulk ArtFX statue to give away.
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