RZA's G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

Starting tomorrow, the Toy Fair 2012 trade show will engulf Midtown Manhattan in a tide of roiling plastic. Points of articulation will blot out the sky, and reality itself will polymorph into one cosmically absurd play set.

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Absolutely nowhere will the peals of children's laughter be heard, as anyone under voting age is banned from the convention floor. It is as if 10,000 birthdays for 10,000 poltergeists are happening simultaneously. Your inner child will attempt to extricate itself from your corporeal being, like some heretofore undiscovered intestinal parasite rending viscera and sphincter with primal abandon. It is an intoxicating time to be alive.

Earlier this afternoon, Hasbro opened the doors to their pre-convention fête near Times Square. The toymaker had action figures from their G.I. Joe, Star Wars, Marvel Universe, and Transformers lines on display. And tucked be'twixt your standard coterie of Iron Men, Optimi Prime, and Luke Skywalkers were some endearingly weird playthings.

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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

The toy with the best story behind it was the Blind Master action figure from the G.I. Joe: Retaliation movie line. Hasbro asked Wu-Tang Clan bigwig RZA, who plays the sensei in the movie, what accessories his character should come with. RZA wanted a wide-brimmed hat with blades coming out of it. That's pure Ghost Dog.

Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

On a similar note, Hasbro also revealed that they invented an entirely new martial art for G.I. Joe Retaliation. Called "Battle Kata," this form of self-defense pioneered by Snake Eyes focuses on transforming interlocking guns into katana blades (and vice versa). Will it be as powerful as Gymkata? We will see.

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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

The most impressive Star Wars toy on display was the motorized $140 MTT Vehicle from The Phantom Menace, which comes out Fall 2012 and contains a slew of Battle Droids...

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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

But clearly the most important Star Wars toy there was the rectangular "Jar Jar Binks frozen in Carbonite" action figure. Sadly, this is a San Diego Comic-Con 2012 exclusive.

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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

Another Comic-Con exclusive is the deadly mauve Transformers/G.I. Joe Shockwave H.I.S.S. tank, which includes a Decepticon-allied Destro and B.A.T. [Photos via Action Figure Insider]

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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
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Here's a look at The Avengers' Quinjet (March 2012, $30) and three-foot-long S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier (Fall 2012, $70)...

Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair

But the Marvel Legends and 3.75" Marvel Universe figures were a treasure trove of awesome weirdos. Along with a 3.75" Puck (who can balance on his hands), a 3.75" Beta Ray Bill, a 3.75" Nighthawk, a 6" Fantomex, a 6" Armin Zola build-a-figure, and a 3.75" Bombastic Bagman variant figure, Marvel will be producing a gosh-darn Death's Head action figure in 2013 (which wasn't on display).

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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
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Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
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The Amazing Spider-Man provided us with two of the more idiosyncratic toys on display. The remote-control wall-crawling Spider-Man ($50, Fall 2012) boasted a button on his rump...

Illustration for article titled RZAs G.I. Joe action figure, Jar Jar Binks in Carbonite, and other crazy stuff from Toy Fair
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Whereas this positively unsettling Lizard mask was made to be slipped on mid-coitus to kill the mood. That is, unless reptiloid roleplaying is your cup of tea.

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DISCUSSION

James Whitbrook

Just saw a ton of pictures of the SW line on rebelscum, and oh, that Jar Jar in Carbonite is delightful! I want one to put next to the Jar Jar on my desk! And the new Vintage Jar Jar looks like a marked improvement on the already wonderful Movie Heroes one, I'll keep my eye out for that when it's released!

Much love for the The Old Republic figures, too - the Trooper and Shae Vizla look great... Malgus, less so. He suffers from my biggest issue with TVC figures: the cloth pieces. Sometimes, Rarely, it's used subtly and works wonderfully - like lining parts of a jedi's lower robes to improve leg articulation - but a good 80% of the time it comes across as too billowy/unweildy on a figure and it really dampens the whole thing. TVC has some marvellous sculpts, but I'm always scared off of them by the horrid looking cloth bits.