This is the latest in a series (of indefinite length and regularity) of blog posts memorializing cancelled toys. Our subject today is a bit different.
A few weeks ago, NECA tweeted the following:
A figure we prototyped years ago may finally see release. We've gone back in to refine the articulation & it's quite impressive. More soon
-- NECA (@NECA_TOYS) September 17, 2014
They've given a few clues already - not a Gremlin, not Shredder, way older than Prometheus and with way better sales potential - so today, let's look at the things they've shown over the years that have never been released.
Luckily for us, it was just a while ago that NECA had a contest on Twitter where the winner had to name unreleased prototypes. Here's the list they came up with:
- Frank n Furter
- Riff Raff
- Zombie Ed
- Bob Marley
- 7 (from the movie 9)
- Hellraiser Engineer
We'll start with those, even the ones they've already disavowed.
O-Ren Ishii was famously cancelled because Lucy Liu didn't approve the likeness:
Shredder (and the other Foot figures) fell victim to Playmates' unwillingness to play nice with others:
Samara, with her two interchangeable display bases, was never released because NECA couldn't secure international distribution rights (but according to Jean St.Jean, it got as far as being tooled):
Xerxes was solicited in Previews, but orders were apparently too low:
Frank and Riff Raff we've discussed before:
Zombie Ed had his molds stolen:
The same might have happened with Bob Marley, who was never officially released, but is still available from many Chinese sellers:
7 missed out when her movie under-performed (though it still would have been better to get her than the character we did get, 1):
The Hellraiser Engineer was sculpted by Rudy Garcia, and was going to come in a two-pack with Kirsty Cotton, but the line petered out before it could be released:
But those are just the ones from that list. There are plenty of others, though, like these extra Labyrinth goblins:
Or this Devil May Cry Dante that was well under way when Capcom suddenly pulled out:
And let's not forget this highly articulated Kratos:
And just because, here are the Gremlins we're still waiting for, including the cocoon, the Female Gremlin, and the Melting Witch Gremlin:
And the Prometheus figures of Shaw and Fifield, which were cancelled because of slow sales (aka people were tired of buying Engineers):
That's a lot of figures has tried to make over the years, but has been unable to. It's likely that this is an average number of failed licenses for any toy company, but that the difference is NECA actually talks to its fans and shows these things off rather than hiding them away.
What do you think the unreleased figure will be?