Compared to the many comic book conventions we cover throughout the year, I don't usually leave Toy Fair with much by way of swag. Since it's a trade show for businesspeople and journalists and not open to the public, most of the merchandise is for display only. Still, I did manage to get my hands on one special giveaway: Underwear. For my iPhone.
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Saban's localization of Toei's Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger, Power Rangers Super Megaforce, finally kicked off on Nickelodeon this past weekend, and Bandai was celebrating the premiere in a big way at Toy Fair 2014. The core component of the line, of course, is Ranger Keys -- the tiny totems of every Power Ranger's abilities that the Super Megaforce crew use to transform into any Ranger from history -- but the team's default pirate-themed gear was also prominently displayed. Classic Mighty Morphin reissues were also on display, including the Legendary Dragonzord and Titanus the Carrierzord. You can see all of the upcoming action figures, Zords, roleplay/costume toys and of course Ranger Keys, after the cut.
I wasn't expecting to see much past new Power Rangers toys when I visited Bandai America's booth at Toy Fair 2014, but I was straight up stoked when I rounded a corner to see its upcoming line of Banda Japan-designed SprüKits. What are SprüKits? Try all-new action figure model kits of Superman, Batman, Joker, Halo soldiers and more -- all available in several scales of size and complexity. Additionally, the SprüKits line is being used to import Bandai Japan's existing Danball Senki LBX figure kits.
Having spent enough to support a small child on Bandai's S.H. Figuarts action figure line, I was a bit relieved to see that Bluefin Tamashii Nations' Toy Fair 2014 booth was relatively relaxed in terms of never-before-seen figures. My relief didn't last too long, however, as I took in the big items from the show. Not only did we get a second, more fleshed-out look at the upcoming Injustice: Gods Among Us Batman, we also got to scope out a Shippuden-style Naruto and an articulated Michael Jackson in his Moonwalker getup.
Wrap up your week with a host of Friday links.
With a "Capture escaped bad guys with special new technology" premise, we already knew Toei's upcoming Marvel Disk Wars: The Avengers anime would have at least a passing similarity to Pokémon. What we didn't know is that Bandai's collectible game associated with the series, known as "Bachicombat," would play out a lot like pogs. Yes, pogs!
Following its Power Rangers Super Megaforce localization of Toei's Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger series, Saban will return to the dinosaur motif that made Mighty Morphin Power Rangers a huge hit in America back in 1993. According to USA Today, in 2015 Power Rangers Dino Charge will debut on Nickelodeon, meaning that Saban will skip the spy-themed 36th Japanese Sentai Series known as Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters in favor of a show with more humor, more rangers and a lot more dinos.
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When Bluefin Tamashii Nations USA opened a survey to action figure collectors asking which licenses fans were most interested in last year, quite a few fans raised an eyebrow at the inclusion of Super Mario Bros. on the form. Once Bandai's North American distributor of the hyper articulated S.H. Figuarts action figure line uploaded a question mark box from the franchise on its social media channels, though, it seemed as if a trip to the Mushroom Kingdom was surely in order. Today a display at the Nuremburg Toy Fair confirmed it: This May we'll all be able to "Do the Mario" with all the articulation befitting Nintendo's flagship plumber.