The era of the action figure

Discussion in 'The Toyark' started by Nightrain, Mar 9, 2008.

  1. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Villain

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    I think some form of action figure collecting has existed for at least 30 years, longer if you count Barbie. But the release of Star Wars in 1995 really put collecting in a frenzy. It started the era we are in imo.

    Will this era ever end? I don't mean ending action figures in general, but ending an era in which an almost disturbing amount of adults spend thousands of dollars on various action figures and accessories.

    Anyone have any insight as to what existed before widespread adult action figure collecting? Hot Wheels? Baseball cards?

    And what will come after action figures are dead?
     
  2. jdre_124

    jdre_124 Super Dick

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    I really doubt I will stop buying action figures when I am 60 and I will slap my kid so that he continues the tradition.

    What you want a car for your 16th birthday?
    No. Fuck you. Here is a Spider-Man 5 figure. Don't go showing off to the neighborhood now.
     
  3. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    im thinking the boom in the 90s was due to us 80s kids.

    i dunno if kids these days are into action figures as much as we were, what with video games n stuff. so when their generation reach the age where they have disposeable cash in say, another 10 to 20 years, im not sure the market will be the same as it is now.

    the true vintage stuff that have longstanding following (like star wars) im sure will retain value. just look at rare mego prices now.
     
  4. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Villain

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    I think you're right. And since we were so heavily exposed to an explosion of cartoons and movies in the 80s, that's a strong dose of nostalgia, which leads to collecting.

    So the question becomes, what will the 21st century kids-to-adults be nostalgic about? Pokemans? Children's card games?
     
  5. ginrai

    ginrai lost with no way home.

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    I figure they won't be nostalgic for anything, Everything comes with preplanned obsolescence now. So no reason to get too attached, something better is always just around the corner. Now go whine to your parents till they buy it for you!
     
  6. Liege Prime

    Liege Prime Well-Known Member

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    I also think the boom is due in most part to 80's kids being grown up. Not that sales aren't highest thanks to kids, but when I go to a store's toy department, the most real estate for the action figures goes to figures based on toylines that have been around for at least over a decade. Plenty of Star Wars, TMNT, TFs, and now even GI Joe and Power Rangers. I can't really think of a completely new line or series of figures that are actually doing really well or that has stuck around from within the past 8 years. My point being that there won't be anything kids of today are going to think back about the 00's as we think back about the 80's. Will all the 80's lines perpetuate on with adults and kids alike? That may be its saving grace, but I seriously think video games and such are what's appealing to kids more these days.

    I'm pretty sure adults would have thought the same thing about kids from the 80s.
     
  7. gargunkle

    gargunkle someone

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    If this were true, I think Power Rangers and Pokemon would already be gone.
     
  8. jorod74

    jorod74 Psycholagnist (Ret.)

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    i worry that kids will just get lazier, and into more video games.
    i look at McFarlane Toys and wanna bitch slap Todd (figuratively) for veering wayyy off from action figures into things you can't even take out of the package.
    he makes statues.

    kids will continue (well, i am only guessing) to buy his sports lines because they want a realistic statue of a player, nothing else.
    and his other stuff is decor items- like the 3D movie/album posters, the Jaws diorama, etc..
    if other companies do that, then AFs will die out and be almost forgotten like lincoln logs or Lite Brites and things.

    watching friends who have kids, they only buy AFs as pacifiers on long shopping excursions, and the kid is almost encouraged to break them so he has reason to get another one to replace it when he's bored of it.

    i just see trends where the only salvation for them are kids that grew up, saw us and recognize where the passion comes from.

    just my 2 cents.
     
  9. Bumble Prime

    Bumble Prime all the time

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    i think the next generation will be worse than us.......

    cuz of "collecting" geared toys like yu gi oh and pokemon. I mean most of the appeal of those are spwaning 9 yr old completionists............. they are gonna be way more broke than us lol
     
  10. Hiro Prime

    Hiro Prime Cybertronian Guru Veteran

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    It wasn't just Star Wars in the '90's that built this huge toy market today, other lines also contributed. How do I know, I was in the thick of it. In the days before E-bay we did every show we could book ourselves for and one of the big driving forces of those sales were toys.

    If you guys think Scalping is bad today, you should have seen what it was like then. Star Wars, Playmate's Star Trek, McFarlane figures, ToyBiz Marvel figures... it was a zoo. Now some of those lines are gone but the fact that new ones rise to take their place is a good sign that the market is still hungry for toys. I think the market will continue strong for a good long while but as to what's next over the horizon? I wish I knew so I could buy it and sell it. (nobody even saw CCG's coming.)
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2008
  11. ranoobu

    ranoobu I like fried chicken

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    I've actually thought about this before.

    Recently, I noticed that there are little to no cartoons during the weekday afternoons for over the air television.. (free tv) and less shows on saturday.

    Made me wonder if toys will still be in demand down the road if television stations air less cartoons.. I loved it when I was younger.. there were so many cartoon shows to watch all over at least 5 different channels..
     
  12. ckhtiger

    ckhtiger old skool fool

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    the thing about the 1995 era of collecting action figures is that that's also when beast wars came out. I mean think about it--going to the store you had tons of star wars and transformers action figures, both lines that were over 10 years old. my best friend and I had just graduated high school, and we would go on weekly toy runs, he for sw, me for tf. I was a grand time.
     
  13. Chaos Muffin

    Chaos Muffin Misadventure Veteran

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    It was mostly trains, wooden toys, metal windups and dolls before this, and baseball cards

    20 yrs from now we'll probably be making our own toys, especially at this rate with customs and addon sets for modifying . The toys will also blow these away. Cant wait to see all the articulation revolutions
     
  14. Codimus Prime

    Codimus Prime Missouri Toy Hunter

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    Even if the next generation is buying the new stuff, there will be people out there wanting the vintage items. It's not going to end.
     
  15. Ziero

    Ziero TFW2005 Supporter

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    McFarlane's 'toys' aren't aimed as much towards kids though, they're directly marketed towards older crowds and collectors, much unlike TFs are, so they don't need to have high playability. Most of those Mcfarlane statues never even come out of the packaging because there's no need to take them out. And to be perfectly honest, I think that's a great thing and works perfectly with the type of 'toys' Mcfarlane sells.

    And this is no different from 20 years ago when parents would buy random toys for their kids just to shut them up. Infact I would wager that this is how most kids get their toys, outside of holidays and b-days. By random bitching and whining in stores that sell toys. And in the long run, this situtation will continue, just like it always has since toys were sold in shops.

    Actually, there are FAR more Cartoons on nowadays then there ever were in the 80s, they're just not on the major networks during weekday primetime. But there's no need for them to be when most homes nowadays have cable or satillite and thus access to *multiple* 24-hour-a-day Cartoon channels. Back in the day, when I got home from school, after 6-7 o'clock cartoons were *over*. In the summer I would be up till 11 watching Nick at Nite because there were no cartoons on anywhere. Now, I can flip through no less then *3* 24 hour a day cartoon channels, each one showing a different original, and popular, cartoon. Cable allowed networks to free up their main channels for the parents while giving something for kids to watch any time of day.

    And in the future, there will still be toys. They may be different from our toys, but there will always be collectors of stuff from their childhood. Whether that be Pokemon or McFarlane stuff...both of which are nearly-if-not a decade old in their own right, or whatever new toy that comes down the pipeline. And superhero toys will *always* be on the shelves, whether they be from the new big movie, the next new cartoon, or just the newest take on the oldest faces. The 70s-80s brought about the Action Figure market, that's certainly true, but the future will always find new things for people to fall in love with.
     

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