Saturday, August 22, 2015

The Gloom Of Doom - Variant Cover And Secret Wars Toy

I love these variant covers for Secret Wars 2015. Done in the style of the original action figures, these covers perfectly capture the look of those iconic toys.
The Secret Wars was a 12 issue comic book mini-series that Marvel created in the early 80s. But just telling a story was not the only reason for the comic. Marvel and Hasbro had teamed up to release action figures based on the characters in what became a classic Marvel Story. Marvel had done a few mini-series before then but this was the first really big try at creating an 'event' that everyone would rally around and talk about. Doom was the head villain of the piece and it's his faults as a human being that once again prevents him from holding Godlike power for very long.
The idea was to create something to compete with DC who had just had a successful toy release with their Super Powers line of figures. Both lines, however, where the first such superhero action figures in decades. Try to find a Doctor Strange figure before 1980 and it can't be done. Like the Star Wars figures that had taken the world by storm, these toys gave comic books geeks something they hadn't seen before, actual figures of their favorites. Some figures, Like DOOM, found their way into plastic for the first time. This line was also the fist time we saw Wolverine as an action figure. I have him but both his snap on claws are lost deep within the loose toy bin. Grrrrr.
I love the story about when the Hasbro Toys consulted with Marvel on their characters. All of them where translated from comic to plastic as they appeared in the regular Marvel Universe. Nothing was needed to be changed about Captain America, for example, because he was already perfect. But DOOM? Dear sweet DOOM? Him they looked at and the notes they gave were 'too medieval'. So they decided to sex him up, lose the cape and give him some updated technical looking armor. It's a lame choice at best.
Doom requires no update. He is also already perfect the way he is.

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