Attending the Hasbro Marvel panel was supposed to be a swan song of sorts. With an ever-expanding toy collection, I came to the realization that I don’t read the modern comics anymore. The Super Helicarrier was amazing but just impossible to send home.
I just gave up the prospect of owning a “Marvel Universe” of toys, many of whom are in different eras foreign to me. That stated, last year was met with old bodies reused ad nauseum with horrible repaints as filler (Marvel Universe Psylocke anyone?), and repaints seemed to be the name of the game to cut costs. As a collector, that translated to “cheap”. As any Star Wars fan can attest to, if you wait long enough, a better version will come. We also had the return of Marvel Legends. Those were beautiful toys, but many of them were of modern characters I had no attachment to, and in a scale I no longer collected. After the panel, I was disillusioned again, because this time, the property took an entire about-face in presenting toys in 2 scales I wanted to dive into. Now here I am, completely confused as to which scale to buy. Maybe I will just submit and buy both.
They first touched upon the exclusive toys of the show. Marvel Universe, X-Force, and the Super Helicarrier were on sale. For those of us waiting for Jim Lee-inspired deco for the X-Force characters, we will get Archangel and presumably Wolverine, but Psylocke will be only available in her X-Force deco for the foreseeable future. Though she has no appearance in sight, at least through 2013, a new female buck is in the works that should work very well for Betsy down the line. Perhaps also, GI Joe fans may be seeing their own aircraft carrier waiting in the wings now that the Super Helicarrier gave them some much-needed tooling. Bucks need re-use, you know?
Mainly aimed at the children crowd, the touched upon the Amazing Spider-Man movie figures, the continuation of the Ultimate Spider-Man series, and the little charming Marvel Bonka Zonks stunt sets. There are 102 in all, with some characters making their first-ever appearance in and Hasbro Marvel toy expression. For the Marvel Digital Comics exclusive figure, next year’s toy will be Future Wolverine with Hulk baby. The set was very impressive for that scale. It will be interesting to see them in person this fall.
Marvel Universe will continue with the successful comic packs, and multi-pack sets. Outside of the Inhumans (Medusa/Black Bolt/Karnak), Avengers(Thor/Red Hulk/Iron Man), and X-Men(X-baby Cyclops/Rogue/Wolverine/Longshot) sets seen in the booth, they will be joined by the current Uncanny X-Men, with Colossus in Juggernaut suit, Emma Frost, and Cyclops (not yet revealed in design). They also re-showed previous reveals of Puck, Angel, Professor X, Jubilee, and Blastaar. Onto Marvel Legends, they showed Deadpool (in current deco and X-Force deco), US Agent, Neo-Classic Iron Man, Punisher and Blade (as pack-out variants of one another), Mystique and Moonstar (as pack-out variants, and as an opportunity to release more firearms for both ladies), and lastly Dr Doom, both in current white deco and the recognizable green vestments.
2013 will be the year of the mini build-a-figure! Each wave will consist of six figures; three sets of two characters that use similar tooling. One of each of the 3 pairs can be used to build the fully articulated Mini-build-a-figure. First up is the Hit Monkey series. The three pairs of characters will be Red She-Hulk and Savage She-Hulk, Iron Fist and Protector, Sentry and Hyperion. Rounding out this assortment are Ultimate Captain America and X-Force Wolverine, and Jim Lee X-Men deco Archangel. Wave 2 sneak peak include Marvel’s Wrecker the amazingly sculpted and much-desired Jim Lee Jean Grey, easily a figure of the year candidate for that head sculpt alone. It was truly worth the wait, though a few more Jim Lee costume touches are required…and Dwight has been made very aware of this.
Other sneak peaks included an all-new female buck, shown on Thunderbolts member Moonstone. Many fans of the Mighty Muggs figures have there itch scratched next year with new Micro Muggs of Iron Man’s many armors to display, all in time for the upcoming Iron Man 3 movie. Not to be outdone, there will be Marvel Legends representation, with comic-inspired characters sneaking in. A final teaser pic of Extremis Armor Iron Man ambushed by Build-A-Figure Iron Monger wowed the crowd.
What wasn’t on the slideshow was on the show floor, and at least half of what was shown wasn’t covered. Check out the pics on our Hasbro Marvel gallery to realize the scope of Marvel goodies coming later this year and next year. Just look at 3.75” Rogue and Elektra, followed by the incredible size of Rhino and Hulk. All named are some of the best action figures ever made in that scale. While some figures naturally show them in their modern comic incarnation unfamiliar to me, the many classic Marvel characters also made charmed me right back into Hasbro’s clutches. 4-inch, 6-inch…just take my money.