By now, you've all seen the excellent new Batman Begins, a breath of fresh air into the film franchise and the first Batman film dark enough to satiate even the most diehard Miller fans. One of the best films of the year (thus far), it's a wonderful combination of characterisation and grit, realised by many talents and offering a little something for everyone. With only one downfall - epileptic action sequences - it marks a revival of one of the greatest comic book characters to the mainstream.
Of course, it only makes sense that the action figures would be total crap. With the exception of the uber-sweet but overpriced Batmobile, the awful figures come complete with boring sculpts, flaccid articulation and a scale which makes no sense: 5 inches? Why?! Effectively out of scale with every other Batman toy, and every other toy, the scale makes no sense.
It should come as no surprise that these toys aren't selling well, and I can't imagine why. No, wait, yes I can - Mattel is retarded. There's no other way to explain the continual bad decisions that this company makes, from destroying the excellent Masters of the Universe line, to releasing some of the best Batman figures ever - Batsignal Batman, Attack Armor Batman, Scarecrow and Bane - everywhere except America for no reason at all. Sure, they're amending these mistakes slowly, but the whole mess is surely a sign that the marketing department needs a serious overhaul.
I think I should be put in charge of marketing for every toy company in the world.
For one, I know what the average collector wants, because I am the average collector. I can't afford everything, and I wont buy crap. No, I don't want a million Spider-Man variants, ToyBiz, I want one Spider-Man, maybe two if there's a good variant to be made, and then other characters. Villians. And I don't want the villains to be one per case - make the Spider-Man variant one per case. Not only does that make sense, but it keeps the collectors happy - the variant Spidey, which not everyone wants, becomes the collector's item, rather than the must-own villain figure. Like my thinking?
Now, take the Batman Begins license - tell me you wouldn't prefer this instead of the current crap we have:
- Bruce Wayne, 6" figure with briefcase, wine and wine glass, other millionaire playboy accessories
- Batman, 6" super-articulated figure with batarangs, grappling gun, other weapons and two detachable capes (one normal, one open glider)
- Dr. Jonathan Crane, 6" with removable straightjacket, two removable Scarecrow masks (one with maggets, one without) and scare gas accessories
- Ducard, 6" super articulated figure with various weapons accessories
- Gordon, 6" with police accessories and removable glasses
Including Alfred, Rachel Dawes (with tazer), Lucius Fox, Ra's Al Ghul, and a second Batman figure
For case pack, the Batman figures would be more per case and the others evenly packed. How could this fail? Children want Batman and they want villains, and collectors want a range of different characters - no one wants a million variants of the hero, especially not Water Attack Batman, and a good scale with great sculpts is a must. Sadly, it will not be! We remain stuck with the 5" crap, and we're helpless to do anything about it. Or are we?