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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Action Figure Showcase
Playmates Toys, the master toy licensee for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, will be hosting a panel once again during Comic-Con. Please find additional details below. We hope to see you there!
When: Friday, July 25th; 2:00PM
Where: Comic-Con International: San Diego, Room 23ABC
What: This is where you can hear what’s in the pipeline for our favorite Heroes in a Half Shell. The panel will offer a sneak preview of future toys, as well as a Q&A session for fans to ask our experienced ‘Team Green’ members everything and anything about the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. ‘Team Green’ members have worked on all three incarnations of the Turtles since their original debut over three decades ago.
Exclusive Comic Con Raphael Action Figure
The new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2014 Comic Con Exclusive from Nickelodeon and Playmates Toys is a 4.5” tall action figure of Raphael based on how he appeared in the original 1984 Comic Book by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird. Raphael will be highly detailed, fully articulated, come uniquely decorated in classic comic book black and white and include his signature twin sais weapons. He will come packed out with his own signature sewer lid base and be packaged in a limited edition, highly collectible, closed box package featuring his bio and comic book history. The exclusive figure will be available for purchase at the Nickelodeon booth during the show.
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by Robert “Rob Base” Greenwood
Welcome to the first article in a series talking about great comics that never had a truly great toy franchise.
Today I want to talk about a book that’s pushing 30 years now.
Usagi Yojimbo by Stan Sakai
A brief history
兎用心棒 Usagi Yōjinbō (pronounced oo-SA-gi) “The Rabbit Bodyguard” created by Stan Sakai that first appeared in Albedo Anthropomorphics #2 published by Thoughts and Images in November 1984.
Stan Sakai accepted an offer to move his warrior rabbit to Fantagraphics Books where he appeared in several issues of the new anthropomorphic anthology series, Critters.
Usagi’s popularity influenced Fantagraphics to then release the Usagi Yojimbo Summer Special in October 1986.
Finally, Fantagraphics gave the ronin rabbit his own on-going series with issue #1 being published in July 1987.
The adventures of this talented anthropomorphic biped have captivated comic fans for a long time yet he has never seen a proper toy line.
Don’t get me wrong he was made into a few figures over the years. In the TMNT vintage line, he appeared twice. Nothing that was groundbreaking.
One issue that diehard fans have is that Usagi is neither dressed nor resembles his comic book counterpart other than the ears in a bun.
I make exceptions for toys that are really out there and Space Usagi gets the pass for just being too quirky and over the top!
When characters who are basically in the same vein as Usagi, like Bucky O’Hare, get a full fledged toy line, why didn’t our beloved Rabbit warrior?
In the late 90’s, Antarctic Press released an Usagi Yojimbo figure that did its best to capture the comic book.
Of course, being it was the 90’s, comic book fans couldn’t escape the dreaded variant versions.
In the early 2000’s, the return of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (redubbed “TMNT”) brought new and more adult themes into the world of the Fab Four. With their return, they brought their totally awesome rabbit friend in to the modern toy world.
Needless to say that with the rise of direct market and high end action figures, Usagi and the gang could very well be made into an awesome toy line in the year 2013.
In 2003 Dark Horse released a PVC of Usagi.
Unfortunately, this has almost no articulation but does retain a lot of what makes Usagi who he is.
Who would I pick to handle such a monumental undertaking event? Minimates! Having a full line of 2 inch figures makes me smile from ear to ear. Mininates, who first out could capture the cartoon style of Sakai and give a robust collection which could then be incorporated into any preexisting Minimates toy line.
With its parent company Diamond Select, we could also get a 7 inch tall highly detailed collectors figure of Usagi to add as well.
We have been treated to Usagi in statue form but a proper figure still alludes us. With Sakai doing Usagi right for so long and his new series, 47 Ronin, being a modern masterpiece, plus Usagi getting his own hack and slash app game, a proper figure would just be the icing on the cake.
Let us also not forget that in 2011, IGN ranked Miyamoto Usagi 92nd in the top 100 comic books heroes.
There is no time like the present to bring action figures back to Usagi Yojimbo.
in this installment of R2T3 Suine shows us some April Basics