The PopCulteer
January 18, 2019

This week we are playing catch-up with the world of toys, about a month before the big International Toy Fair in New York. There’s been a lot of news breaking early, as some details of toys to come have leaked at toy fairs in other countries, and there were some big business moves, so let’s take a look at what’s new in the toyland…

DC Comics Action Figures

The big news that broke before Christmas was that the license to make DC Comics action figures will be switching from Mattel to Spin Master in 2020. I’ve already written about it, and there isn’t much new to add, except that it’s become clear that Mattel did not even pursue the license, as I speculated. They wanted out, largely because the toys just haven’t been selling well based on the DC Universe movies.

There just hasn’t been a lot of news out of Mattel about their upcoming lame-duck year.

However, about a week ago the director of the upcoming Shazam movie unveiled a few of the toys based on that film, and less than a week later they were spotted (by me) locally in Walmart.


MEGO Wave Four

After a succesful relaunch at Target last year, MEGO is planning to hit the ground running in 2019. Figures for Wave 4 are being announced, and some of them are already leaking into stores several week before they’re supposed to.

What we know for sure is that the 14″ DC Comics line at Target wlll include Black Manta, the arch enemy of Aquaman, and we are likely to get the King of the Sea as well.

In the 8″ line, four legend figures have been announced, Joe Namath, Muhammed Ali, Farrah Fawcett and Marilyn Monroe. Namath, Ali and Fawcett were all immortalized in toy form by MEGO back in the 1970s. Ali and Monroe have reportedly been found at Target stores in San Diego and Texas, even though they’re not due out officially until early March.

Here’s a look at the figures, lifted from the MEGO Ambassador Facebook page

The 14″ Black Manta. Could Aquaman be on the way to stop this menace?

Broadway Joe returns to MEGO, for the first time in the 8 inch size.

In case anyone was wondering why Farrah Fawcett’s character was not among the first three Charlie’s Angels figures that MEGO released last year, it seems they were saving her for this.

Depecting the famous “Eight-inch itch” or something like that, it’s Marilyn Monroe.

A look at the back of the Marilyn card. The new packaging design is a vast improvement over last year’s look.

Ms Monroe and Muhammed Ali have reportedly already leaked into Target stores, several weeks early.

We also have word that MEGO will no longer be confined to Target stores. Their exclusivity deal was up December 31 of last year. We don’t know which other retailers besides Target will carry the figures yet, but indications are that there will be more than one additional retailer, and they may have different assortments of figures.

We’ll keep you posted as more details emerge.

New from NJ Croce

On the bendie figure front, Our friends at NJ Croce have announced their new line for 2019. Aside from that very cool “First Appearance” Batman that you see at the head of this post,We have more from NJ Croce after the jump…

Here’s the cool new bendable stuff that you can expect from NJ Croce…

Also available on single cards, and a two-pack of Shaggy and Scooby, it’s the fiftieth anniversary of Scooby Doo and the gang.

A new boxed set of Looney Tunes figures includes Tax and Marvin, either of home will make your desk a better place.

The new Action Bendables get a boxed set, and the John Stewart Green Lantern.

Captain Picard joins the Star Trek line.

The Michael Keaton Batman marks it’s 30th anniversary this year, while Batman himself turns 80. This is a prototype package for the 1989 Batman bendie.

This is another possible package design.

Batman The Animated series gets a couple of new two-packs, with Batman & Robin…

…and The Joker & Harley Quinn.

This two-pack combines the first appearance Batman with a recolored figure from The New Batman Adventures.

We leave you with one more look at that great 80th anniversary figure, which will only be sold in this packaging this year.

And that is it for this week’s PopCulteer. Check back for all our regular features, plus news on the programming at our sister internet radio station, The AIR.