Us horror fans have a tendency to glamorize what we like to refer to as "the good old days", and rip on anything that came after those days passed by. We're constantly ranting and raving about how things "aren't what they used to be", and wishing we could travel back to a time when it was more awesome to be a horror fan.
While it's true that a time period like the 1980s was more suited to folks like us, there's no denying that there is no better time to be a collector of horror movie inspired toys than right now...in this very moment. The market is absolutely flooded with highly detailed miniature plastic versions of some of the most beloved characters in horror, both past and present, and that my friends is a beautiful thing. No, you may not be able to head out to your local Toys R Us and pick up My Pet Monster or a Boglin, but it's a pretty awesome thing to be able to head out to that same Toys R Us, and find the shelves lined with the best looking Freddy and Jason figures your toy-loving eyes have ever seen. Toys you never would've been able to find, in "the good old days".
Here are 10 upcoming toys that you should probably pre-order, so that you can ensure you're among the first to add them to your collection!
10" DARYL DIXON FIGURE - MCFARLANE
The breakout star of The Walking Dead is of course Norman Reedus, for his portrayal of the arrow shooting badass Daryl Dixon, a character every male horror fan wants to be, and every female horror fan wants to be with. Naturally, given the popularity of the character, toy companies are milking this greasy cash cow for all he's worth, and filling their product lines with as many Daryl Dixon themed toys as they can dream up. In addition to an upcoming bank from Gentle Giant and a cute little vinyl toy from Funko, McFarlane Toys is adding this 10" Dixon figure to their ever expanding Walking Dead line, in November. Though all Walking Dead fans should probably also pre-order the entire fourth series of their line, which includes the first figures of The Governor, Carl and Andrea, this one is particularly enticing given the larger size, as compared to McFarlane's usual 5" offerings. Reedus fans will also be pleased to see that Dixon has finally been given a new sculpt, which far surpasses the original one that fans have been spending hundreds of dollars for on eBay. Snatch this one up, before it too skyrockets in value!
PREDATOR SERIES 10 - NECA
As much as I love NECA, they were admittedly getting to a point where I was wishing they would put the focus on different characters, rather than releasing endless different variations of Predators. Not that it's not cool that we're being given an action figure for every different Predator that we've ever come across in the movies, it just gets a little stale after a while. Well, this year NECA spiced things up big time in their extensive Predator line, first giving us a few different figures of Dutch, and in October unleashing this new series on us, which takes things in a bit of a different direction. If you don't remember these particularly unique looking Predators from any of the movies, that's because Lava Planet Predator, Hive Wars Predator and Nightstorm Predator are based on characters Kenner took the liberty of creating for their line of Predator toys, back in the 90s. Kenner padded their line with all sorts of fun and cartoony looking Predators, to up the appeal for kids, and NECA this year takes those toys from the cartoon world into the real world, to give us a glimpse of what those Predators would look like, if they had actually appeared in the movies. Finally, some excitement infused back into the line!
MUNSTERS SERIES 2 - DIAMOND SELECT TOYS
Herman, Lily and their bizarre little family are no strangers to the world of toys, which have been hitting the market since the show first premiered, back in 1964. The licensing rights now belong to Diamond Select Toys, who have set their sights on whipping up the most impressive looking Munsters toys to date. Thus far they put out the first series in the line, consisting of Herman, Grandpa and Lily, as well as black & white box set of the entire family, and a two pack containing Marilyn and Eddie (and of course, Wolfie!). In September, Series 2 sees release, and added to the line are new episode specific versions of Herman, Lily and Grandpa, as well as the surprise appearance of the Gillman...I mean, Uncle Gilbert. Coolest of all, each of the four figures comes with a piece of the infamous Munster staircase, which when put together, also includes their pet "dog" Spot!
SPIDER GREMLIN - NECA
Another license NECA has been putting a lot of time into lately is Gremlins, and they've thus far touched on everything from Gizmo in a Santa suit to that electrified Gremlin seen in the second film. Coming up next is their largest offering to date, a replica of Mohawk in full on spider form, as seen in Gremlins 2. NECA had previously released a regular Mohawk figure with an included spider serum accessory, perhaps hinting at what was to come, and this Fall they go full on with this incredible figure, which stands over 10" tall, measures 15" across and is a whopping 12" deep. The massive toy includes a support stand and over 30 points of articulation, in the jaw, wrists, elbows, shoulders and legs. Needless to say, NECA has ensured that no Gremlins toy collection will ever be complete without this bad boy!
PSYCHO LIVING DEAD DOLLS - MEZCO
Over 50 years since it was first released, Psycho has perhaps never been more popular than right now, with the recent airing of the first season of Bates Motel, AMC's prequel television series that introduced a whole new generation to Norman Bates and the mother who turned him into a monster. Just in time for Halloween, in October, Mezco gives Bates and his most well known victim Marion Crane the prestigious Living Dead Doll treatment, adding them to a growing list of cinematic icons who have also been given the treatment, including Jason Voorhees, Freddy Krueger and Captain Spaulding. An homage to the iconic shower stabbing scene, Marion Crane is neatly wrapped in a Bates Motel embroidered towel, while Norman comes equipped with his trusty knife, as well as a removable wig and dress, allowing you to get your dress up on and change him from Norman to Norma, to keep things fresh in your collection. As for what's under Marion's towel, only time will tell, ya pervert.
ALIEN RE-ACTION FIGURES - SUPER7
These have already been covered here on FEARnet, but a list of the coolest upcoming toys would certainly not be complete without mentioning what are hands down the coolest toys set for release in the remainder of 2013. Long story short, Kenner back in 1979 planned on releasing a line of Alien toys, on the heels of the release of their 18" Xenomorph. Though prototypes were whipped up, the line was ultimately tossed out the window, amid controversy and parental outrage over the movie being marketed to children. It was the 18" toy that spawned all the outrage, and Kenner decided to just do away with all things Alien, to avoid any further complaints.
Suddenly, out of nowhere, along comes a company called Super7, who announced that they would be resurrecting the line of toys. Using reference materials and original prototypes, Super7 is this September going to be releasing their own replicas of those long forgotten toys from 1979, finally giving us all the chance to hold in our hands toys we never thought we would. Included in the line are Ripley, Ash, Dallas, Kane and of course Mr. Xenomorph, all of which come housed in period accurate packaging. Super7 will in conjunction with the toys be putting out a line of drinking glasses, also done up in that vintage style.
See what I mean about right now being the best time in the history of the world to be a horror fan, and a collector of toys?!
CARRIE ACTION FIGURES - NECA
Pre-ordering these particular toys is a bit of a gamble, considering we've yet to see if the upcoming Carrie remake is any good, but my money's on it at least being good enough to warrant splurging on these. And besides, even if the movie blows, you could always pretend that these are figures from the original Carrie, and that the head sculpt is just a tad bit off. Regardless, this marks the first time Carrie has ever been given the toy treatment, in any of her forms, and I think that's a pretty cool thing, which makes these worth the purchase. Though they were supposed to be released alongside the movie, this past March, the movie's premiere date was moved to October, which is now when the two figures will also be hitting the market. Now where's my Angela Bettis Carrie figure?!
TRICK 'R TREAT VINYL TOY - FUNKO
I know a lot of horror fans aren't exactly comfortable with their favorite cinematic monsters being turned into cute and cuddly caricatures, but I personally am a fan of what Funko has for the last couple years been doing with their POP! vinyl line, which is growing rapidly in the latter portion of this year. Pennywise, Chucky, Ash, Captain Spaulding and Jigsaw's loveable puppet Billy are all being cute-ified this coming August, but the one I'm most excited about is Trick 'r Treat's Sam, who quite frankly doesn't have to go out of his way to be cute. Even when he's going for your jugular with his razor sharp pumpkin pop, he's still pretty damn cute!
PROMETHEUS SERIES 3 - NECA
Prometheus was hands down one of the most polarizing films released last year, a movie that half of every audience hated, and the other half loved. I fell into the latter category, which you'd need only take a look at my toy wall to know. NECA has thus far released two series' of toys based on the film, each comprised of two figures; Series 1 had the Chair Suit Engineer and the unmasked Pressure Suit Engineer, while Series 2 added David and proto-Xenomorph Deacon to the mix. Series 3 introduces us to variants of the Series 1 releases, made to look as the Engineers did when they were seen in hologram, early on in the film. Translucent blue plastic and a highly detailed paint job gives the figures that look, and both of them come packaged with one of those ampules from the film, which NECA says can be opened to find "mysterious contents inside." We'll have to wait until September to find out what those contents are!
NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET SERIES 4 - NECA
NECA has been doing an absolutely bang up job with their Elm Street line these last couple years, and their goal seems to be to release a different figure for every look Freddy has taken on, in the various films in the franchise. While I'd love to see them tackle figures of characters like Nancy and my personal favorite Dream Warrior, Kincaid, you won't find me complaining about their desire to fill our shelves with Freddy, Freddy and more Freddy. September's release of Series 4 adds two really exciting figures to the Freddy line; Powerglove Freddy, from one of the most awesome scenes in Freddy's Dead, and Springwood Slasher Freddy, which depicts Mr. Krueger before he became a burnt up dream demon. Two welcome additions to the collection, that's for sure!
There are of course many sites around the web where you can pre-order any or all of these, but my personal go-to spot for such money dropping is Amok Time, a company that is both reliable as well as inexpensive. They even offer deals if you want to purchase entire series sets, and you'd be hard pressed to find a site where you can add these all to your collection for any cheaper.
So embrace the now, and place your pre-orders today!