One of my most anticipated lines of the year has been Cards Inc's Harry Potter line, released by their newly formed Popco Entertainment division.
Despite being one of the most popular entertainment franchises on the planet Harry Potter has had a rather spotty toy history. Mattel original held the Master Toy License and produced figures, dolls, games and various product from Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone through Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. But all along it never seemed as Mattel was really sure what exactly to do with Harry Potter, with the style and even scale of the figures changing almost arbitrarily. Ultimately, though they still held the license at the time, they chose not to produce action figures for Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. So, there’s been something of a Harry Potter toy drought since Azkaban products faded from store shelves.
As most fans know now there are two companies holding licenses to produce Harry Potter action figures. NECA holds the rights in North America and Cards Inc/Popco Entertainment holds the European rights.
Unfortunately for Potter fans in North America, it’s Cards Inc that is producing what could turn into the ultimate Harry Potter action figure line. This isn’t to slight the wonderful work that NECA is doing with the license in North America, but NECA produces collectibles. Popco is making toys. There’s a big difference. Popco’s line is done in the 3-3/4" scale (based on Harry), and features in the neighbourhood of 14 pts of articulation (sometimes less, given the character). As you can see in the picture above there’s a nice sense of scale to the line. Adults are larger than the students, and Hagrid towers over them all.
So, Harry clocks in a 3-3/4", Dumbledore at 4.5" and Hagrid at 5-1/4", just to give you an idea. The figures are wonderfully sculpted. While some are not as outstanding as their prototypes appeared (it’s the rare figure that is), they are still great looking figures. I was able to obtain my figures from a friend in the UK, and out of the figures I received Dumbledore and Mad Eye Moody are the real standouts. They are just fantastic. I shudder to think how expensive this line will be to collect on this side of the pond, but for Harry Potter fans this is really the toyline this property has been waiting for. I just hope at some point in the near future Warner Bros Consumer Products is able to alter the terms of their license with NECA to allow Popco’s line to be sold at mass market in North America. Popco holds the license for films 1 - 6, so this line has the potential to be massive!
Bravo, Popco! Job well done!