One of my regular readers,
Brandon, has put together his thoughts on the current crop of action figure
companies. He asked me if I could post it here, and I'm going to do
so. I'll be doing a similar discussion within the month, as we get
closer to my picks for the best of the year.
Brandon sent this to me some
time ago, but I've taken a lot of time getting it posted. Some things
have changed since he's written it, but I think he has some interesting
points. I'll expound on my thoughts on this very subject in the coming
weeks. Now on to Brandon!
Hello, my name is Brandon and I
have been an action figure collector for a long time. I always look for
comments and reviews of action figures and when I found Michael`s site I
thought to myself "this is the legit action figure review site, there
couldn`t be one possibly better".
I respect Michael just not as a
kind man but an expert of reviews and just taking the time to buy action
figures. As for me, I will talk about my opinions on the best action figure
companies, but first let me tell you why I like action figures.
I like them for many reasons. I
just love to display them and think about them. The sculptors we have today
are fantastic and it just calms me. Like for an example, I look at my
collection of McFarlane`s Movie Maniacs and it just thrills me to see Jaws,
the Terminator, Jason, Freddy, Michael Myers, Pumpkinhead, the Crow (Eric
Draven), the Fly, and many others together. I think that is so neat. I feel
the same way with all of my others like Sideshow`s 12 inch Universal
Monsters. It is just so awesome to see Larry Talbot next to the original
Frankenstein next to the Vampire of London After Midnight and Nosferatu the
Vampyre! And I just love seeing Bandai`s Godzilla figures all displayed. It
is just a treat to see. I could go on and on. Here is MY opinions of my
favorite current action figure companies. Now you may be suprised by how I
think but this is all my opinion.
1. McFarlane Toys
Without a doubt they have some of the best sculptors in the business. They
have gone so far to make figures no other company would and they have made
some of my favorites such as Movie Maniacs, Music figures, MLB and Sports
Picks. When it comes to detail their action figures are nearly flawless but
McFarlane isn't perfect. Their figures are fragile at the joints and this
disappoints me when I pose them. Some of them break easily. This is
something McFarlane needs to improve but they are still a young company and
I believe they can only get better!
2. Sideshow Toy
They have become one of my favorite companies. They are arguably the best
there is. They have countless great figure lines and I am so impressed with
their sculpting and detailing that I look forward to every product they
create! I have only noticed one flaw and that is simply some of their
earlier 12 inchers have loose joints. This company has such a bright future!
3. Toy Biz
Toy Biz is a very good company. They have some of the best likenesses
and good articulation a figure collector can ask for but there are two
problems with Toy Biz. 1. Some of the joints aren't made very well and are
likely to break and 2. they lack a variety of figure lines. Of course they
have all kinds of Marvel lines such as the marvelous Marvel Legends but when
it comes to movie series` they don`t include much. Of course they have X-Men
the movie line, the excellent Spider-Man film series and the incredible
ongoing Lord of the Rings series but that's only three major films thus far
although with the Incredible Hulk feature film, and X-Men 2 so Toy Biz will
have their hands full. To me Toy Biz`s only problem is their "joint
freeze" and if they worked on that and more movies they would be a lot
higher in the world.
Hasbro has always been one of favorite companies because they always made
interesting lines from movies and such. They have one of the biggest series
any figure company could have and that is Star Wars! They have nearly done
the impossible with this series and I`m sure it'll get even better as time
goes on. Their sculpting is really good and I really have no problem with
One of the largest companies in Japan and have many lines. I love Bandai
because they have made two of my favorites a reality, Godzilla and Gamera!
Bandai created these and other great monsters perfectly. There is only one
problem and that since these monster are produced in Japan it'll take alot
of money to get them especially the special box sets and the large scale
figures. If this wasn't a problem I can tell you right now Bandai would be
my number one figure company. I hope everything works out ok when Bandai
releases their six inch Godzilla line to the U.S.A. If everything goes well
then America's biggest figure companies will have competition!
In the early 90s to the mid 90s Playmates was had a solid lineup with great
sculpting and likenesses the included Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Star
Trek, Exo-Squad, Earthworm Jim, Skeleton Warriors, and many more. Today they
really only have one legit line and that is the Simpsons. The Simpsons is
not enough for me. In fact it's too little. I am not happy with Playmates
with their lack of solid lines. Hopefully they will get better and get
back on track.
Makers of Reservoir Dogs 12 inchers and the outstanding Resident Evil
figures. Palisades is a good company when it comes to likenesses but like
Toy Biz they have the "joint freeze" syndrome and it ruins their
great figures. I feel they are young and as time goes by they'll be one of
8. Art Asylum
This company has come fast and their products are very impressive. Art
Asylum makes Bruce Lee figures with great likeness along with outstanding
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon figures. A.A. also produces music figures and
now Star Trek so it seems to me Art Asylum is going to good places with
their great sculpting and articulation and I think they'll definitely be a
fan favorite for years to come!
9. N2 Toys
I have no complaints what so ever about N2`s sculpting and articulation but
there is one thing that really bugs me and that's their lines getting
cancelled and being delayed. I can't stand that the fact that Red Planet,
The 5th Element, and now the Matrix series 3. This really bugs me but if
this company is handled in the right hands N2 Toys will go some where and
its most likely sky high!
****Editor's Note: N2 is no longer in business****
Much like Playmates they only have two legit lines and that's Harry Potter
and He-Man. I have no problem how Mattel makes their figures but they just
gotta have more lines. I am very impressed with the He-Man series but what
is keeping me from ranking Mattel higher is the lack of legitimate series.
As you can see I only listed
ten companies which these are my favorite ones. I didn't list Trendmasters
because I am not to pleased with them. They were on the right track with
Godzilla, Gamera, Tarzan, and ID-4 but since they took Rumble Robots, Power
Puff Girls, and other lines like that I have been saddened by this.
***Editor's Note: Trendmasters
is no longer in business***
X-Plus looks to be a great
company with their Godzilla and Ray Harryhausen statues
so be on the look for them! I hope you have enjoyed this. It is a pleasure
to know that there are more action figure collectors out there than just me
:) I always have fun when I visit Michael's web site everyday and I hope you
do too! If you have any questions about this or my opinions about the
companies and figure lines I mention above please don't hesitate and e-mail
me at Capri1981@aol.com.