Some animated shows naturally lend themselves to awesome toy products, and this is the case with Disney XD’s Slugterra. Jakks Pacific has created some spectacular Slugterra figures, which are scaled in a way allow fans to fill the shoes of their favorite characters.
The toy line was released last year, but I’m just now seeing the toys in stores. While a number of characters from the show were released in the first wave, the most fun comes from the Slug two-packs. Each blister card features two Slugs from the show and their battle statistics on the card back.
The Slug statistics can also be easily clipped off the card and catalogued for future reference. What’s really cool, is the Slugs are sculpted to scale, allowing you to hold them in your palm or carry around, while role playing characters from the show.
The Slugs released in the second wave of two-packs are Bold and Spooker, Doc and Stinky, Spinner and Bludgeon, Burpy and Bugsy, and Chiller and Grimmstone.
Jakks also released a number of blasters, including Slug ammo for role playing. This toy line is also one of the more affordable products in stores right now, falling under $6 for the two-packs. Each blister card also comes with codes to unlock exclusive content on the Slugterra mobile game, enriching the interactivity between the show and playtime.
Although the writing was on the wall, not many fans believed early warnings that Cartoon Network’s The Clone Wars was headed toward cancellation. After a strong Internet campaign, Lucasfilm announced they’d release some bonus content from the unaired sixth season.
Fans have speculated how the content would be released. Earlier this month, Lucasfilm officials announced they produced 13 episodes from the canceled season – which equals to half a full season. This is great news for Star Wars fans, as it’s a lot more episodes than we expected to see.
Some fans were concerned what method Lucasfilm/Disney would use to release the sixth season – which is being called The Lost Missions. Early rumors pointed to the content being exclusive to Apple TV devices, which would impose severe limitations to the number of people with early access. Netflix is so widely used, this is the best case scenario, and most affordable, to get these episodes out to the public.
In addition to the new episodes, Netflix will also stream the first five seasons of The Clone Wars. It will be made available for Netflix members in the U.S. and Canada starting March 7. It’s also a multiyear agreement, meaning it’ll be in the streaming catalogue for at least two years.
Disney reached an agreement with Netflix last year, which will result in a lot more Disney titles being added to Netflix streaming in coming years. If successful, there’s also potential for exclusive Star Wars projects being added to Netflix as original series’ – especially if the Disney-owned Marvel Studio’s Defenders project proves a hit.
While we’ve got to wait until March, the sixth season began airing in Germany on Feb. 15. Here are some episode summaries from the German network. Follow the jump below to read the summaries, but remember these contain SPOILERS for the upcoming sixth season.
The third company we’re highlighting from New York Toy Fair is Hasbro, which appears to be bouncing back after suffering a null in interest from collectors the last couple years. Star Wars fans should ready their wallets, because some stunning figures were unveiled at the event.
While its Star Wars lines have warmed pegs for a while, the debut of the Black Series helped reignite confidence in collectors. Although there were plenty of problems with packaging for the 3.75-inch figures, the new line of 6-inch figures became a massive hit.
Hasbro announced the next wave of Black Series 6-inch figures, including the first vehicle set and deluxe scaled figures. The release of a speeder bike, accompanies with a Biker Scout, is definitely a testing ground for future vehicle releases. Depending on collector’s willingness to pay inflated price tags for 6-inch scale vehicles will likely determine whether it’s worth the cost of producing.
The expanded wave of new figures includes Obi-Wan Kenobi (prequel version), Stormtrooper, Bespin Luke Skywalker, Anakin Skywalker, Chewbacca, Clone Trooper, Darth Vader, Jedi Luke Skywalker, Sandtrooper (with black pauldron) and Jabba the Hutt.
As always, the sculpting on these figures is nothing less than extraordinary. While we’re not shocked so many troopers are seeing early releases, they’re some of the most bought figures; we’re disappointed that Hasbro is already recycling characters so early on in the series. We’d rather see a bounty hunter character in this year’s assortment, rather than three more Luke Skywalkers.
The most exciting new line, though, is the debut of the Star Wars Rebels line. There was a lot of attention paid to this line, because it provided huge first-looks at the upcoming series. But casting aside that perspective, these figures are beautiful and the limited articulation is a nice throwback to the toys we had as children – along with meaning more affordable price tags.
The first wave of Rebels figures includes a Stormtrooper, Chopper, The Inquisitor, Ezra, Kanan, Agent Kallas and Zeb – the majority of these are brand new characters to the Star Wars Universe. Hasbro also announced figures for the already fan favorites, Sabine and Hera, will be unveiled this summer at the San Diego Comic Con.
Finally, the upcoming wave of Black Series 3.75-inch figures were shown, including Dagobah Luke Skywalker, Snowtrooper, Yoda and Padme. This is the only Star Wars line to still feature high articulation, but the entire line casts a shadow after the packaging problems experienced in its first wave. There’s nothing too special in this new wave, either.
With all the fresh faces being seen in the other lines, it’s hard to get too excited about characters we’ve seen dozens of times before.
It’s seldom I visit the store without taking a quick detour through the toy aisle. Based on my own observation, one of the most embraced new toy lines of last year was Spin Master’s line of Dreamworks Dragons toys – especially its series of mini dragons.
These figures flew off the pegs in my region. Every retailer I visit has virtually sold out of the first wave of dragons, and for good reason – not only is this line affordable enough to buy on the splurge, but they’re highly detailed and capture the spirit of the franchise.
Spin Master debuted the line last year with seven dragons and two Vikings including Thunderdrum, Hookfang, Stormfly, Meatlug, Barf and Belch and two versions of Night Fury. The success of the line led Spin Master to release two figures from the second wave – Dagur and Terrible Terror – early, also resulting in quick sales.
Fans have been anticipating the next wave of mini dragons, which were revealed this past weekend at the New York Toy Fair. In addition to a new Toothless – the new lineup also will include a wild Zippleback, Cloudjumper, Skrill and a Flightmare.
Spin Master ceases to impress me with their ability to take dragons of such large proportions, and adapt them into miniature “baby” versions of the beasts. It’ll be interesting to see whether any additional dragons or Viking characters will be added to the new wave, when including Terrible Terror and Dagur – another Viking and dragon will add up to the same number of figures released in last year’s inaugural wave.
Which dragon or human character do you most want to see added to the mini dragon line? With the sequel film being released in a few months, we should expect plenty of more products coming down the line.
If you followed the news coming out of this past weekend’s New York Toy Fair, then I imagine you’re certain of one thing – you’re going to need a bigger wallet. There’s some truly splendid products coming out this year, but the company that caught most of my attention was none other than Funko.
Since last year’s San Diego Comic Con, the team at Funko has sprinkled hints at what new licenses they’ve acquired and what characters we could look forward to seeing this year. A number of prototypes were featured at the Funko booth at Toy Fair, and I think the company has outdone themselves.
The first batches of new Mystery Minis should already be hitting store shelves, including lines for Marvel, Walking Dead and Game of Thrones. Mystery Minis for Adventure Time are tentatively scheduled to be released in June.
Funko is also expanding their presence in action figures this year. In addition to its retro style Re-Action Figure lines for Terminator, Escape From New York, Back to the Future, Rocketeer and Predator – the company acquired a license to produce a highly articulated, detailed series of Game of Thrones figures.
Funko’s bread and butter continue to be its POP! Vinyl collection, and this year the company will introduce brand new licenses to its lineup – some of these have already been announced, but we now have further details including scheduled release dates and a first look at the characters.
The first bunch of new POP!’s will come in April, including the second wave of Walking Dead figures and Sons of Anarchy. A month later, in May, we’ll see the much anticipated release of POP! Vinyls for Ghostbusters, the Maleficent Movie and coming as a huge surprise – How to Train Your Dragon 2.
The Dragon lineup includes the characters of Astrid, Hiccup, Toothless, Stormfly, Hookfang, and Belch and Barf. These figures are absolutely stunning and the designs are based off the upcoming sequel film. I really hope they expand on this line, because they’re some of the cutest POP!’s to ever come out of Funko.
In June, we’ll receive see additions to the POP! Television, POP! Movies and POP! Marvel collections. These include two characters from Kill Bill – but what will really knock your socks off are the figures for Guardians of the Galaxy – including a must-have Rocket Raccoon – and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, including the figures of Buffy, Angel, Gentleman, Willow and two versions of Spike.
Looking toward the future, those who visited the Funko booth at Toy Fair caught a glimpse of POP!’s coming the second half of the year. These licenses include WWE, Arrested Development, Dragonball Z, Ninja Turtles, Firefly, True Blood and more.
Overall, this is a huge year for Funko as the company’s catalogue of products explodes with fan favorites. It’s evident the company is catching the eye of many film and TV studios, as we receive more and more entertainment tie-ins.
Which POP! Vinyl license are you most anticipating this year?
Photos from the New York Toy Fair are credited to www.popvinyls.com. Visit their page for even more details about upcoming toys and full coverage of last week’s event.