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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:53 am 
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I guess we'll know the answer around 2023. That's when the kids who were 10 years old in 2003 will be 30. For some of those kids who loved the show and had some of the toys, it seems pretty likely that there will be some serious nostalgia. And Mattel sold a lot of JLU toys over the line's run. It will be interesting to see if that generation thinks of the line as a "classic" toyline. There will certainly be some dudes in their 50s and 60s who will agree with them if they want to call it a classic line. The longevity of the line helps make a case for it.


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:04 am 
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I should probably have specified in the first post that I'm asking if JLU will be classic in 20 years...providing toy lines and cartoons are still around and working much in the same way they've been for the last 20 years. It's entirely possible that everything will change in the coming years, and toy lines will die out and be completely replaced by video games. So hypothetically, if toys and toons are still around, will this line be considered one of the greats?

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I don't agree.


...I'm not sure I understand this reply. You don't agree that "interest has seriously dropped", as I said in the first post?

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For point of reference, Super Powers lasted three years. The Marvel Secret Wars toys lasted just three waves from 1984 to 1985. JLU lasted ten.


That is a considerable length of time. Of course, Ben10 has been going on for a while now, but I'm not sure if it will later be considered a Classic.

It's interesting comparing these two replies:

Quote:
My kids, nieces, nephews and most of their friends all have a fondness for the line. They loved the cartoon, and remember the big three.


Quote:
None of my nieces, nephews, or children of friends owned any of them unless I gave them some of my extras, and they only played with them for a little while before losing interest. I only saw college age people looking at them in stores.


I definitely felt that JL and JLU came along to please the fans who'd been with Timm since B:TAS, so I have a hard time imagining a bunch of little kids watching the shows with interest. Maybe they did...but I get the sense it wasn't in the way that kids (and adults) watched B:TAS and got into that toy line.

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In addition, most of these kids that collected JLU at the toy stores probably had no idea that the Mattycollector product was even available. That might make JLU especially collectible in the future, especially if kids grow up and discover that they didn't know some of their favorite characters had been made.


Don't kids these days know about and peruse Ebay (even if they don't have the credit cards to allow them to buy anything?)

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1) JLU was one of the highest rated kids shows, even at the time of it's cancellation. The show was cancelled because of a "regime change" at WB Animation.


I....did not hear that. I heard that the show had reached the magic syndication number, but then they were given an additional 13 episodes.


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:14 am 
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JLU (the cartoon, not the line) didn't have the cultural impact that Masters of the Universe or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or Star Wars or G.I. Joe had. These cartoons were on CBS or ABC or whatever every Saturday morning, and they literally changed pop culture.

I'd be interested to know what the Nielsen ratings were like for TMNT back in the late '80s and early '90s. I'm sure that they would dwarf JLU and Young Justice - and most other cartoons today. The obvious result of this is that there were more kids who were fans of TMNT, GI Joe, etc. than there are of JLU. But that's normal today - there are so many television channels with so many options for programming that paradigm-changing shows are going to be few and far between.

When I was a kid, all the moms were in cahoots, trying to help each other locate April O'Neil and Leatherhead and Chrome Dome. The frenzy among us kids was unbelievable. I don't think that was the case with JLU (though that could also be attributed to the existence of eBay and the Internet as a whole).

So while I think that the line will be appreciated, I don't think it will be a classic. Like Shellhead, I think the days of "classic" toy lines are well behind us. We all know that action figures don’t sell like they used to in their heyday, and retail has adjusted their expectations for how well an action figure line should perform – so today’s lines don’t have to sell half as much as the likes of TMNT, MOTU, and GI Joe. So in twenty years, there’s not going to be as big of a nostalgia collector market as the vintage lines have today.


Last edited by MoMoney on Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:36 am 
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I don't have any doubt about it. JLU IS a classic already and it will continue to be remembered in the next decade.


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:37 am 
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ian5555 wrote:
I doubt it. MOTU and Gi Joe and the toys of the 80's are classics because it got the kids. 25-30 years later who is spending tons of $$ trying to get a piece of their childhood? Those same kids who grew up. Not the case with JLU imo.

It is one of the biggest action figure lines but classic? No. There most likely will be no collecting community for the line in 20 years.

A classic line is timeless and keeps adding collectors. JLU has lost collectors over the years. Unless there is a renewed interest in the cartoon some day, no it won't be a classic line.



ian, Im gonna help you out here. You see your opening there, you talk about kids in the 80s spending $$ 25-30 yrs later on a piece of their childhood when they buy up GI Joe and MOTU. Then your very next statment is this is "not the case with JLU". You didnt say "I dont THINK IN 25-30 yrs JLU will be being sought after like GI Joe or MOTU is now". You said it if as that time had already elapsed and you were passing judgement.

You have since clarified, or backtracked, either/or. But initially your first post read as if the 30 yrs had already passed and you could see that comparing JLU to Joes and MOTU, as a classic line, didnt hold up. Thats where the confusion, for some, comes from. Your first post ;) Hey, it happens. I dont always read ALL the post because some of them are by trolls, or totally incomprehensible so I skip around and its easy to pick a line or some points and run with them. I think thats all that happened here.

And as far as "classic" lines are concerned...I dont see JLU being one when we look back 15 yrs from now (and Im a HUGE fan and its all I collect, for the most part), and heres my take. Times are waaaaaaay different now compared to my "childhood". Kids today fall into the "McDonaldisation" of society. Not to delve too deep into society now vs, say the 80s, but kids generally dont stick with something for long periods of time today. I think the generations from the late 90s/ early 00s will look back at certain video games and the like with a certain nostalgia, but not the toys. Because of the fast changing times, the shorter attention spans, annnnd the the lack of accessibility for the JLU show will keep it from being "classic" in our sense of a classic line. When I say lack of accessibility I mean the life of the show and the channel it was on. Not everyone had CN and the show wasnt on daily like, say GI Joe was (at least for me) when I got home from school at 3 or 330.
Batfink says it was one of the highest rated kids shows when cancelled, that may be but was that highest rated on CN? Was that in its day/time slot? Was that overall? For some reason I dont think it compared, numbers wise, to shows on FOX/WB (whatever else it has been known as) on a saturday morning. You know, a cartoon vs cartoon comparo. And hes right that collectors alone cant keep a line (at retail) alive without the kids. But, for some reason, I dont think the numbers sold of JLU, at its peak, would hold a candle to GI Joe of the 80s at its peak. GI Joe was a phenom when I was kid, couldnt find figures because they flat sold out, not under production or horrid distribution. It was a cultural juggernaut. And the scope of the collection, vehicles, playsets...getting misty eyed just thinkin about lol.

So long story short, no it wont be classic on that level. Unless...well, unless somehow the cartoon came back. If its brought back in reruns, or better yet, a new version of it pops up in some fashion (IE current GLTAS style) then I believe you have a better shot at the first run being viewed in a "classic", nostalgic way by kids that remember it from the first go round. The more generations you can appeal to, over time, the better shot that first iteration has at being a "classic".

Man I rambled on there. Sorry bout that!

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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:47 am 
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BFantana wrote:
But, for some reason, I dont think the numbers sold of JLU, at its peak, would hold a candle to GI Joe of the 80s at its peak. GI Joe was a phenom when I was kid, couldnt find figures because they flat sold out, not under production or horrid distribution. It was a cultural juggernaut. And the scope of the collection, vehicles, playsets...getting misty eyed just thinkin about lol.

Yep, I edited my above post to reflect this sentiment before I saw your post.

Action figures are so much less popular today than they were in the 1980s and 1990s that they're making less of them - and that means that there are fewer kids buying them - and that means that there are fewer potential nostalgia-fueled collectors today than there were in 1992.


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:00 am 
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That was a good ramble, and you bring up some interesting stuff. First off, JLU would consistently do great in its time slot on Saturday mornings. Most of the press stuff has disappeared off the net but here is a link to an old 2005 thread.

http://www.toonzone.net/forums/showthre ... he-Ratings

Now, the interesting idea here is this: With people saving and collecting almost everything in an over-saturated market, can any toy line be considered "classic" like the old 1980's stuff?

Maybe someone who grew up in the 1960's would say that Super Powers and the small G.I. Joes are not really classic compared to the vintage G.I. Joes and Captain Action / Mego superheroes. What if we get a Justice League movie series that knocks everyone's socks off in 5, 10 or 20 years and provides renewed interest in JLU?

It's all subjective. Maybe it's just human nature to add unique importance to the beloved things we grew up with. I think if people still collect JLU (or any other) figures in 20 years, you can consider it a "classic" line. That's just my definition.


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:29 am 
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I remember the aforementioned regime change, but I believe it was shortlived. Nonetheless, It's what caused DC Comics to want to have their own "Direct to Video" label. I mean... one group was responsible for Brainiac Attacks and the other for Superman: Doomsday. So you know... at the end of the day, it was clear who the better brand was. And as a result of that little fork in the road, I believe that Bruce Timm was quickly promoted and the DC Universe direct-to-video brand folded back into Warner Animation.

As for JLU being a classic toyline... yes I believe it to be so.

But not in the way most people think.

I mean... you can't compare JLU to Masters of the Universe and/or Transformers because those lines were completely original. JLU, on the other hand, is just another iteration of the DC Universe; but as such, stands its ground with other Classic DC Universe lines like Mego Super-Heroes, Super-Powers, DCUC, etc. (Sorry, Total Justice. You were great... in a Rob Liefeld kind of way; but just like his art, you just didn't age well.)

Anyways... JLU, to me, is a classic in the same vein that the NECA & Original Playmates versions of TMNT are both classics. (TMNT Cyber Samurai figures... not much of a classic in my book.) :twisted:

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...6. Chronos...7. Killer Croc w/BabyDoll...8. Felix Faust...9. Poison Ivy...10. Deathstroke
Bonus:...Starfire, Steppenwolf w/Desaad, the Joker's Jokerz


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:34 am 
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BFantana wrote:
ian5555 wrote:
I doubt it. MOTU and Gi Joe and the toys of the 80's are classics because it got the kids. 25-30 years later who is spending tons of $$ trying to get a piece of their childhood? Those same kids who grew up. Not the case with JLU imo.

It is one of the biggest action figure lines but classic? No. There most likely will be no collecting community for the line in 20 years.

A classic line is timeless and keeps adding collectors. JLU has lost collectors over the years. Unless there is a renewed interest in the cartoon some day, no it won't be a classic line.



ian, Im gonna help you out here. You see your opening there, you talk about kids in the 80s spending $$ 25-30 yrs later on a piece of their childhood when they buy up GI Joe and MOTU. Then your very next statment is this is "not the case with JLU". You didnt say "I dont THINK IN 25-30 yrs JLU will be being sought after like GI Joe or MOTU is now". You said it if as that time had already elapsed and you were passing judgement.


Thanks maybe I could have worded that better but it's obvious that 25-30 years have not passed already since the JLU cartoon ended so it's easily understood. I said in my opinion as in I do not think that in 25-30 years JLU will be classic like MOTU GI Joe was. "Not the case with JLU imo" meaning JLU will not be like MOTU and GI Joe where has has this mass following of children that will grow up and start buying all the toys again. I'm not getting the disconnect here but I think people like to knitpick :lol:

I'll even go as far to say it ain't happening. Cartoons just do not have the impact on children the way they used to in the 80's especially when it comes to action figures. Look at how big Power Rangers was and it really doesn't have a collector group that is big do they?

As I said I think it will go down as a great line but will not be remembered as a classic line.

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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 10:22 am 
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clas·sic/ˈklasik/
Adjective:
Judged over a period of time to be of the highest quality and outstanding of its kind.
Noun:
A work of art of recognized and established value.

JLU fits the bill for me. No disrespect to Power Rangers, but the target age for those toys seemed a lot younger than the G.I. Joe / Tranformers / JLU stuff. Less focus on story or visual art and more emphasis on bright colors and fighting. More along the lines of the DC Superfriends toys.

Anyways, in 25 years our robot overlords will only use toys for fuel so we don't really have to worry about it. :D


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:51 pm 
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BFantana wrote:


But, for some reason, I dont think the numbers sold of JLU, at its peak, would hold a candle to GI Joe of the 80s at its peak. GI Joe was a phenom when I was kid, couldnt find figures because they flat sold out, not under production or horrid distribution. It was a cultural juggernaut. And the scope of the collection, vehicles, playsets...getting misty eyed just thinkin about lol.

Wanna really start crying? Look at this:
Image
Image
These are old pictures from inside a Toys R Us back in the 80's. I never saw JLU toys ever come close to this in stores. I love JLU but it will never be the same type of classic that G.I. Joe is today in another 20 years.


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 6:18 pm 
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No toy line today will ever compare. Because no toy line will be produced in those numbers. Times were different then. They were far cheaper to make than they are today. And in some instances, the toys were actually better. Toys back then were also affordable. Which they are not today.

While you can compare them, you can't. I don't think JLU will be a classic toyline to the general public, but to toy fans and DC comics fans, it'll be a staple. Within genre. Nothing has ever come close to GI Joe, Star Wars, Transformers, etc. Partly because the world is just different. But there is no toy line that makes that amount of vehicles and playsets anymore. They won't put out product unless they are sure to make a significant profit.

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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:31 pm 
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I love pics like that. Really brings back great memories! Of course if you took a similar pic today of the Dark Knight / Avengers wall at TRU, with the big X through the price, people would say, "what a peg clogger!" :D

I don't know. There were less toys around back then, and no Wal Mart or Target where toasters compete for peg space. So it makes sense that there would be more of each line. I've seen a similar picture of a giant Mego display.

When Chip Kidd photographs JLU / Batman toys for his art books on Bruce Timm, does that lessen the artistic sculpts of other toys and make them less "classic?" are the 10" JLU sculpts more "classic" because they resemble the maquettes?

I just have to go back to the definition of the word classic. For me, Bruce Timm, Walt Disney, Fleischer Studios all made a higher art out of animation. The JLU figures are a physical manifestation of Timm's artwork that have been able to be appreciated by kids, moms and collectors for a decade. They will never be G.I. Joe...but so what? Pretty sure my Captain Action Batman wasn't made in those numbers either.


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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:21 pm 
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Of course G.I.Joe had space taking vehicles. Some 2" long.

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 Post subject: Re: JL/JLU - A Classic Toyline?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 5:20 am 
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I wish I could step through that picture with a pocket full of cash. I'd buy every toy on that aisle knowing what I know now.

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