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Astro Toy at Toy Fair 2012

by David Cabrera,

Once again I've taken the trip out to Toy Fair, and once again-- perhaps more than last year-- anime items were a very small presence at this event. Indeed, a lot of what we did decide to include here is right over the “not anime” line... but you do want to see toys from more than one booth, right? Let's get through the fastest ones first. My apologies in advance for the Diamond booth pictures, they're a little rough. Note: all photos can be clicked to view in higher resolution.

The comic distributor Diamond happened to have a couple of items they distribute in their display cases: nothing new, but here are some Haruhi figures (pretty sure these have been out for a long time, but I gotta throw you guys a bone)...

The Death Note Figuttos, of which we have reviewed one...

PVC from Dog Days and To Heart...

The Elrics in Real Action Hero form-- and Jack Sparrow (Severus Snape not pictured)...

...and the one that caught my eye, 70s superhero Denjin Zaborgar! He turns into a bike... but I doubt this figure does. What a fun movie the remake was: when does it come out on video anyway?

This year Square Enix's items were entirely from the Play-Arts line and limited to the videogame world.

What a specific effect part for Cammy: Street Fighter 4 players will say “oh, that's EX Cannon Strike, that move is BS!” and everybody else will just be like “isn't her butt cold?” Check out that weirdo knee joint: think I last saw that one on ol' Long-Arms Ed.

It's like in my Japanese anime, yes, but Metal Gear isn't Japanese anime either.

Surprisingly after last year's impressive display, Final Fantasy was just a little merch box this year. Two accompanying Play-Arts toys are all you get. There's a message here about the popular and critical reception of Final Fantasy XIII and its effect on the franchise's reputation, but I think we need to finish this toy article.

And I know it's a Western videogame, but I know a lot of nerds and I'm willing to bet that, like, half of you are really hyped about Mass Effect 3.

With Han frozen in Carbonite holding their logo, Kotobukiya was entirely running on stuff from Western pop culture. I'm just glad that dude was lounging when he was: this is one of my favorite pictures of the show!

In particular, the whole Bishoujo line has really been a runaway success for them. This kind of idea had been tried before, but it took Shunya Yamashita to really get these characters into a happy medium.

Here are some new superheroines...

and even a supervillainess!

But I'm really hurting to see Harley-chan with a giant hammer and moe Power Girl.

But yeah, we are an anime site. What did Koto have for anime fans? A single, tiny case. And in that spirit, here are tiny Gaogagar and King J-Der.

Bandai ran away with this one by default, and I spent most of my time in this booth snapping shots of everything. I've saved this booth for the last because after the Tiger and Bunny and Jump stuff, this is a room packed with things that I love and that our readership doesn't really care about. Thank me later!

Tiger and Bunny had a display case densely packed with just about every figure the phenomenally successful franchise has produced. Here are the Figuarts of the title characters...

Sky High...

Rock Bison, who I'm told is the one all the ladies are really hot for.

And Blue Rose from the Nendoroid-knockoff Chibi-Arts line.

A notch down from there we've got the cute trading figures.

And then there was One Piece, which had two display cases stocked with a small army of similarly cute trading figures and Portrait of Pirates PVC.

I know very little about OP so I'll leave these pictures to you.

Chogokin Franky with accessories. I still think this thing is so cool.

Looks like, after a long delay, Figuarts Dragon Ball is still a thing after all. I knew they wouldn't leave that money on the table for long. Upcoming are Super Saiyan Everybody, and Trunks is going to come with a lot of stuff, huh?

Warning: the diorama is canon.

The Metal Build Freedom Gundam, is, well, metal. Looks like a gorgeous figure, but to be quite honest I hate this design. There's a point at which a Gundam has too much crap on it, which is at like Nu Gundam or ZZ or so... and then there's this. Give me Zeta Plus.

Excuse me as I fully lay my tastes bare: now there's a beautiful robot! The new Soul of Chogokin is Saikyo Robo Daiouja. A simple three-robot combiner with a lot of weapons, Daiouja's about a foot tall and $200-some as has become the norm in this line. I'd rather have Godsigma, though...

Here's the Super Robot Chogokin GGG that I'd raved about with the first two Key Of Victory sets: the second comes with Stealth Gao II and Gatling Driver.

The line is continuing with ChoRyuJin and many of the other robots from the show.

Anyway, let's take it back to Gundam, because I've got a lot of photos of Gundam stuff. In Gunpla we've got the Gundam Wing crew in Master Grade...

Even Epyon!

A 1/48 (over a foot and taller than Perfect Grade) kit of AGE-1.

And Nobel Gundam says hi. Don't forget about Nobel Gundam.

Kamen Riders dotted the booth, both from last decade and the truly vintage. That dragon is a bike.

The Saint Seiya line was present as usual, but the truly impressive piece was...

...the Saint Crown Sagittarius figure. Foot tall, resplendent in golden armor, I'm sold, I'm so sold. If Bluefin gets this to us for a little cheaper than the Japanese release we can have our least popular column ever.

The growing D-Arts line for videogame characters is covering all bases associated with Megaman X: there's even going to be a figure of Vile!

Alright, you're wondering, what was the most baller (or ballerest) thing at Toy Fair that I've been holding back on? That's pretty easy: dead center in the Bandai booth there was a lovely diorama of Godzilla and Mecha-Godzilla destroying the Javits Center. A lot of us who go to cons at the Javits wind up wishing that this same fate would befall it, so I'm sure this was a big hit with people at the show.

The whole Godzilla line is beautiful, but this column is getting ridiculously long.

Finally, as a reward for making it through this gigantic post, I will myself be the gag picture. I happened to run into the Power Rangers on their usual justice-related rounds. We knew we had to pose.

When he isn't killing time on fighting games and mahjong, David Cabrera gets hype about anime, manga and gaming at Subatomic Brainfreeze. You can follow him on Twitter @sasuraiger.

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