Soapbox Sunday: Mattycollector to Close Doors after 2015?

To be frank, I haven’t been paying much attention to the Mattycollector subscription drive this year. Last year, I did a fair bit of agonizing over Club Eternia before re-upping very late in the game. Sure, I chuckled a bit and wondered what was behind Mattel’s announcement that they would *limit* subscriptions for 2015 – but I still waited to see Mattel’s 1st quarter selections for Club Eternia, then subscribed without much further thought.

So it was somewhat of a surprise to see the subscription drama starting to unfold just like it did last year – with an impassioned plea from Toy Guru followed by a confirmation from the Four Horsemen along the lines of “hey, this isn’t a marketing ploy – it’s real.” To state the obvious, this is not good news for Mattycollector. And it begs the question if the collector-oriented site will follow Masters of the Universe Classics into the sunset after 2015.

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Three New Initiatives for ThreeA Toys for 2014

With the growth of 3A Toys’ licensed products, there’s been a lot of new brands coming on board, like the most recent Microman / Micronauts line. But that hasn’t stopped Ashley Wood from mixing it up with its mainstay brands. Here’s three twists from 3A that are new for 2014:

  • WWR EVOL – announced nearly half a year ago, EVOL represents the second act in the World War Robot story. As such, expect some new factions and colorways to join or replace the ones we’ve seen in WWR thus far. We’re likely to see EVOL releases in the regular 1/6 and 1/12 scales. Marquis de Plume is the first announced figure from the EVOL line, in 1/6 scale. I’ve always thought the WWR line was a bit heavy on the pouches, but Marquis would give any Rob Liefeld-designed character a run for the money – if money were pouches.
  • 3AGO – back in September, 3A announced 3AGO, a tribute to the classic MEGO line of figures. This new 8-inch line will span the 3A brands – looks like the first releases will include Nom de Plume from WWR and a Tomorrow King. The TK will be available, likely in extremely limited quantities, at New York Toy Fair. Ash has said this first run of 3AGO will have some issues, but I doubt that will stop the Legionnaires from snatching these up.
  • 3A Adventure (the ThreeA Digital Comic Magazine) – the toys were born out of Ashley Wood’s artwork, so the foray into a digital comic featuring the 3A brands takes it full circle. While no launch date is set, the ambitious plan is to publish 3A Adventure monthly and for free (at least digitally). Ash will be collaborating with 3A Legionnaire and artist extraordinaire BRiZL – if you’ve been a 3A fan and enjoyed the artwork that gets produced by the community during each product drop, you’ve probably seen a bunch of BRiZL’s stuff. How cool is that?

Weinstein Co. Asks NECA to Discontinue Django Unchained Action Figures

I had read about the controversy over Django action figures on Kastor’s Korner but couldn’t believe it when my wife pointed out this news blurb on the Huffington Post. I think this is just posturing by the Weinsteins – by now I imagine production and distribution of the figures is done, and I can’t see a recall of product at retail over this.

I saw the movie – I don’t think it trivialized slavery. I don’t think the action figures trivialize slavery either. They’re movie collectibles. Looking at those head sculpts, I’d probably buy them, if Mego was my thing. But if owning action figures of black characters is insensitive, I better throw out (sorry, emancipate) my Black Panther, Black Lightning, and Black Goliath figures. What somebody really ought to figure out is why these guys all had to have “Black” in their character names.

‘Django Unchained’ Action Figures Discontinued

LOS ANGELES — The Weinstein Co. has asked a toy maker to discontinue a line of “Django Unchained” action figures after receiving complaints that they were offensive.

The studio said Friday that such collectibles have been created for all of director Quentin Tarantino’s films, including “Inglourious Basterds,” and that they were meant for people 17 and older, the audience for the film.

“Django Unchained” is a violent mix of spaghetti Western and blaxploitation genres about a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) who becomes a bounty hunter. Civil rights groups argued that the toys trivialized the horrors of slavery.

“We have tremendous respect for the audience and it was never our intent to offend anyone,” The Weinstein Co. said in a statement. Toy maker NECA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

via ‘Django Unchained’ Action Figures Discontinued.

Toy Fair 2011 – Bif Bang Pow! Venture Bros. and Dr. Who

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I hope the guys don’t hold this against me, but as much as I’ve enjoyed the Venture Bros., I haven’t yet bought any of the Mego-like figures. I think they nailed Brock Samson, but Doc, Hank, and Dean Venture were a little on the weak side – I think it was their eyes.

But Bif Bang Pow! is definitely hitting their stride – these figures have gotten better with every release, and Jonas and Rusty are perfect. When you see the figures in a big group, and knowing the number of characters they have planned, the line becomes incredibly appealing. But please, give Molotov Cocktease a little more cleavage – lift and separate!

I wish I could say more about the Dr. Who figures – I’ve never seen the show. My buddy Ayeffkay showed me this t-shirt, It Came Out Of Nowhere, and I wanted to know why the DeLorean had run into a phone booth. I apologize for my ignorance.
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