Post-Toy Fair 2012 Wrap Up
February 20, 2012

Well, yet another Toy Fair has come and gone and, despite all my (misplaced?) hopes and anticipation it was antoher ho-hum showing at the biggest event in the toy industry.

Now, to be fair I need be mindful of the fact that the American International Toy Fair is for the entirety of the toy industry, not just the small category of action figures. So, I think it’s safer to say, for me, the action figure showings at this Toy Fair were lackluster, if not downright disappointing.Some of this was to be expected. I was guarded in my expectations for Hasbro and what they’d show for Marvel Universe, knowing that Comic Con would be a bigger, more focused splash. So, I was fine with that. The big announcement that was supposed to blow fans away was the Death’s Head (who originated in Marvel UKwas coming to MU in 2013. That’s cool and all, and I’ll get the figure…but, I was never a fan of the character. But, hey, he’ll make a cool figure.

Bandai, I think, was the biggest overall letdown for me as they showed nothing…nada…zip…zero…new for Thundercats. This makes me nervous. I love the property and I love the toys. I want more and there’s SO much more that could be done. In my area the figures seem to sell quite briskly, for the most part. I don’t know if Bandai is waiting for the go-ahead from Cartoon Network, WB or what. Are they also waiting for Comic Con? I don’t know. Bandai has never really done much for Comic Con in the past. I don’t know. But, dang, it was disappointing.

Also, another disappointing no-show was The Bridge Direct’s lines for The Hobbit. While we did get confirmation that there was to be 4″ figures and 6″ figures, we don’t have any details on them. They are holding off for Comic Con to show off what they have planned. I’ve got my fingers crossed that the 4″ figures are more along the lines of, say, Hasbro than Mattel.

Speaking of Mattel, they remain nearly a non-entity for me. Costs and distribution got me out of the DCUC line a few years back (‘though I do want to pick up the Wave 20 Green Arrow…if I ever see it). Young Justice seemed promosing, so I started picking that up. But, there wasn’t anything exciting shown at Toy Fair for that line, either.

I do collect Masters of the Universe Classics, and there was some really cool stuff shown for that…as well as some head scratchingly bad stuff as well. Geoff John’s contribution to the poorly thought out 30th Anniversary line is nearly as bad a misfire as the Mighty Spector. But, dang, that Snake Men 2 pack was sweet!

The Dark Knight Rises…um…where was the rest of the product? Movie Masters was shown, but not the 3-3/4″ figures…the Tek whatever? And where was that other new kid-oriented Batman line? Nothing. Weird. And, once again, as expected, we saw just prior to Toy Fair that the 3-3/4″ line will be 5 points of articulation. Thanks, Mattel.

Playmates made a great showing with their new line for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles…but MTV Geek got to preview it prior to the show. I think the basic 4 Turtles look fantastic. Not as excited, yet, by the ancillary characters. But, the basic TMNT will be mine at least. Now, I just hope the show is good.

(Boy, I’m really turning into a curmudgeon in my old age, ain’t I?)

Unimax showed a cardboard display showing Starcraft II for their Gamestars line, so that’s awesome. Looks like the contract got finalized. Looking forward to those, and still crossing my fingers that Unimax pursues Warcraft. I’m excited to see that there’s more Assassin’s Creed figures coming. The sky’s the limit for Gamestars, I feel.

In the category of Excited and Disappointed at the Same Time we have Mars Attacks from Mezco and World of Warcraft from Mega Bloks. For Mars Attacks I’m excited because the figures look great, and there IS a 4″ figure. I’m only disppointed that there was one character shown with no word if anything else was in the planning stages. For the World of Warcraft product coming later this year from Mega Bloks I was excited by what was shown, and the reports that things had changed and been improved over what was previously shown last Summer at Blizzcon (which was already really cool). There’s speculation (purely speculative speculation) out there in the intertubes that Blizzard is really pushing Mega Bloks to produce the absolute coolest product possible. So, that’s exciting. What was disappointing is that no close up photography was allowed. I’m dying to get a better look at the mini-figures. But, if they’re still not finalized…well, I guess it’s better to wait to get a peek at product that will be more representative of what we’ll get in stores.

Lastly, there were no big surprises that came out of left field and blew me away. Not a one.

So, yeah, overall another Toy Fair that, in the end, just leaves me longing for Comic Con and the really good stuff!

Thus, I turn to you, gentle readers. How was Toy Fair for you overall? Exciting? Disappointing? Somewhere in-between? That comment section down below is just waiting for you to post!

Jeff Cope
Jeff Cope has been collecting toys and action figures since he was a wee lad growing up in the 70s, and is still waiting to grow out of it. He's been involved in the online collecting community since he first started writing for Raving Toy Maniac in the mid-90s, and is proud to call AFi his online home.
Read other articles by Jeff Cope.





  • j1h15233 says:

    We didn’t see anything exciting for YJ at Toy Fair but apparently there was plenty of good stuff behind closed doors.

  • Brendan says:

    Great recap Jeff! 🙂

  • stewbacca says:

    Well Im excited for Julius’ mention of the Hanna Barbera line from Jazzwares– now I need to see pics- to see if I should stay excited– or if IM in store for more Flinstones and Scooby Doo..

    • Jeff Cope Jeff Cope says:

      Wha? I missed that completely! Depending upon what’s involved, that would be the proverbial big surprise that came out of left field!

  • atomxero says:

    Have to agree that there wasn’t a whole lot new this year. It’s really disappointing that Diamond still can’t get their Star Trek stuff together. They’ve been teasing the Excelsior for like two years now. But I was surprised by the focus on Universal Monsters and especially the Lego Monster Fighters. I think I’m join got have to get the entire set.

  • bgiles73 says:

    The announcement of Hasbro aquiring a license for all of Star Trek was a bit of surprise. What they plan to do with it and how far it goes remains to be seen! The Kreo building sets should be cool, but my interests lean more to the potential for 3 3/4″ figures and Transformers. I too can barely wait for SDCC 2012 to see more about this and more info on The Hobbit merchndise!

  • BRIAN says:

    Where was all the great toys and action figures from the John Carter of Mars movie? Nothing new this year……

  • demoncat says:

    a little of both for dispointed in mattel over who they decided to put in the 30th anniversary line for surely that is calling for using the filmation rights like a filmation he-men and skelator though loved that tin and platium and death head is coming. plus hasbro also starting work on squadron supreme as figures. and also disappointed no hobbit stuff was shown for was hoping to at least maybe learn when Smaug is coming down the road

  • Nick says:

    I thought it was great but I am a diehard JLU fan and the news of the final packs being released made everything else not really matter. I also consider that to be a huge surprise as the packs were not originally going to be released and just prior to Toy Fair it was announced that NO new JLU packs would be offered on and then we got the great news at Toy Fair and not only that but we are also getting FireFly and Dr.Destiny. Yes I was very happy with Toy Fair and while I did enjoy some other announcements as well I do understand where fans of other brands could have been somewhat let down and upset.

  • Shellhead says:

    Pretty disappointed. I give it a C.
    The DCUC Sub stuff was the highlight.
    Looks like I’ll be saving quite of bit of money this year on Joes and SW.

  • Joe says:

    I liked the DCUC stuff, glad I got a sub. Loved the TMNT stuff. Looking forword to Ben 10 Omniverse. Bummed no new Marvel Legends announced. It was a so-so show for me.

  • Mario says:

    You are all loooosers..grow up!!

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