Top 10: Brands Super7 Won’t License (But Should) by Jerry Whitworth
In recent years, Super7 has turned from a toy producer for a small niche market of collectors to having some of its wares being recognized by the big companies and put in major retail markets. If there’s a popular action figure line from the 1980s or ’90s, Super7 has either licensed it or has made a play for it. We did a top ten last year for brands Super7 should tap with the Simpsons already snapped up and Dungeons and Dragons revealed to be something the company is actively in the process of seeking. However, having already secured over three dozen licenses over the years, there’s some they simply won’t touch for a variety of reasons. Lets look at some of those options that they should license but likely will not.
Make It So: Super7 ReAction Super Powers by Jerry Whitworth
The 1980s was the golden age of the toy industry. The likes of G.I. Joe, Transformers, and the Masters of the Universe grew to become multi-billion dollar industries. One of the lesser known yet financially successful brands that has endured to today is Super Powers. Featuring the characters of DC Comics rendered in plastic masterfully crafted by the sculptors at Kenner, Super Powers acquired its name from the mechanical motion the action figures produced from squeezing hidden trigger levers. Initially releasing an impressive twelve figures in its first wave in 1984 including Superman, Batman, Robin, Joker, Lex Luthor, and Wonder Woman, Super Powers grew to produce 34 figures, eight vehicles, and one playset over the span of three years. Crashing alongside the rest of the action figure market in 1986, toy historian Jason “Toy Otter” Geyer uncovered a myriad of figures that were in the pipeline including a sub-line known as Power Plus. In the years since, the brand has consistently re-emerged time and again, notably in maquettes from Sideshow/Tweeterhead, statues from Kotobukiya, and action figures from Figures Toy Company and Mattel within the last decade. With this in mind, the time is ripe for Super7 to tackle Super Powers for its ReAction line.
Top 10: Figures for NECA’s Gargoyles by Jerry Whitworth
With the surprise announcement of NECA obtaining the Gargoyles license and the release of images of the forthcoming Goliath action figure, social media melted down. The cult favorite animated series from the 1990s, rallies have ridden like waves for Gargoyles to continue. In recent memory, hope sprung from campaigns to stream the series on Disney+ to show interest in the brand and from director Jordan Peele allegedly pursuing a feature film adapting it. Pre-orders have already begun for Goliath as five action figure sculpts are completed and more are in development. With a figure planned to be revealed every month, lets take a look at what could be coming down the line.
Power Rangers Comes to Toys That Made Us by Jerry Whitworth
When the documentary series The Toys That Made Us about toy brands and properties was renewed by Netflix, speculation immediately arose about what future episodes would emerge. Fans did not have to wait long as the first four episodes were announced at San Diego Comic-Con International and the Nerdfect Strangers accurately predicted at least three of those selections. It was revealed the next four episodes will focus on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, My Little Pony, wrestling, and Power Rangers. Having already gone into detail with the former three previously (although, the ambiguous descriptor for wrestling has lead to speculation the Kinnikuman keshi, or Kinkeshi, better known in America as M.U.S.C.L.E., maybe included), we’re going to discuss the history of Power Rangers and its toys.
The Toys That Made Us: Interview with Brian Volk-Weiss by Jerry Whitworth
An eight episode series whose first half debuted in late 2017 and second half May of this year, The Toys That Made Us is a Netflix-exclusive documentary series on the history of popular toylines and properties. Thus far covering Star Wars, Barbie, Masters of the Universe, GI Joe, Star Trek, Transformers, Lego, and Hello Kitty, TTMU was renewed shortly after its second half went live. Nerdfect Strangers had the opportunity to interview Brian Volk-Weiss, creator and executive producer for TTMU, about the first eight episodes and the series’ future.
Top 10: Toys for TTMU Season Three by Jerry Whitworth
On May 25th, the second season of The Toys That Made Us debuted on Netflix bringing an end to the eight-part documentary series about toylines that helped define the generations that grew up with them. Covering Star Wars, Barbie, He-Man, G.I. Joe, Star Trek, Transformers, Lego, and Hello Kitty, TTMU went over each toyline’s broad history while touching base with the effect they had on the people who collected them, at times weaving in celebrities whose lives’ were impacted by the toys. Stated within the opening sequence of each episode, TTMU was created as an eight-episode series however the concept could easily be expanded much further. Should Netflix order future seasons of TTMU, lets see what toys could be featured next.