First introduced to audiences in the 1989 direct-to-video hit Puppet Master, the film’s living, lethal marionettes – which includes the knife and hook-handed Blade, the drill for a head Tunneler, the poisonous leech-vomiting Leech Woman, super-strong Pinhead and Jester – have been featured in a multitude of sequels and also turned into action figures and other collectibles over the years.
Now, fans of the diminutive but deadly puppets can pick up some new Puppet Master collectibles, including bobblehead figures, plush dolls, statues, limited-edition full-sized replica dolls and more, courtesy of the merchandise division of Charles Band’s Full Moon Features.
In this month’s issue of Rue Morgue, there’s a piece by yours truly on the resurrection of General Mills’ two long deceased Monster Cereals: Frute Brute and Fruity Yummy Mummy. In addition to the products’ reintroduction to the marketplace, fans can also pick up all five Monster Cereals – which of course also include Count Chocula, Franken Berry and Boo Berry – in both contemporary and retro-styled packaging.
If you’re a Hammer Horror fan, you’ll definitely want to take a look at a new series of custom-made collectible figures that are just being made available for sale. The figures – which are produced by an independent company named Distinctive Dummies – are part of a line dubbed “Mego Style,” and are made in the vein of 8-inch tall figures released by iconic toymaker Mego during the 1970s and early ’80s.
I’m a huge fan of the 1979′s Alien. To me, Ridley Scott’s classic shocker is the perfect marriage between sci-fi and horror and I still remember being memorized as a seven-year-old by the film’s pulse pounding television ad spots when they aired during the film’s original theatrical run. I was finally able to watch the film a few years later when it was broadcast on pay TV station First Choice-Superchannel back in the early 1980s. And I’ve been enamoured with it ever since.
So, it’s no wonder that I’m happy to have stumbled across news (of which I unfortunately missed out on when it was first announced a while back) that California-based toy and collectibles company Super7 will be marketing a line of retro-styled, 3 3/4-inch Alien action figures sometime this year. What makes this series so special though is that the figures will be styled exactly like the prototypes created by legendary toy manufacturer Kenner back in the late ’70s for an unrealized Alien toy line. Adding a nice touch is that the figures will come packaged on retro-styled blister cards featuring vintage 1979 Kenner artwork.
With the third season of AMC’s The Walking Dead now upon us, there’s probably no better time to post a few images from the soon-to-be released second series of TWD action figures from McFarlane Toys. Due to hit stores at the end of this month, this new wave consists of Deputy Rick Grimes, a shaved-headed Shane Walsh and three walkers: the memorable Bicycle Girl Zombie, the bloated Well Zombie and the RV Zombie.
Back in 2008, Emce Toys released the first wave of retro-styled action figures based upon characters from George A. Romero’s immortal 1968 classic, Night of the Living Dead. Comprised of Ben and the “Graveyard Zombie,” the 8-inch tall figures were created in the style of classic Mego dolls from the 1970s, and featured articulated bodies, cloth outfits and nicely sculpted rubber heads of actors Duane Jones and Bill Hinzman. They were even packaged in resealable clear clamshells, featuring artwork by Harold Schull, who originally created the beautiful illustrations for such classic Mego offerrings as its Star Trek and Planet of the Apes lines.
Now, after a delay of several years, the series’ second wave of figures is finally being made available: terrified Barbra and little zombified Karen Cooper.
In addition to my Dark Shadows coverage for this month’s issue of Rue Morgue, I was fortunate enough to be able to write a piece on the obscure Canadian TV series Strange Paradise – a program which was actually created to take advantage of the success of the monster-filled DS. A fantastically offbeat show featuring supernatural elements like voodoo, reincarnation, witchcraft and demonic possession, it ran here in Canada weekday afternoons (on the CBC, believe it or not) from October 1969 to July 1970. Though never to enjoy the same level of popularity as Dark Shadows, Strange Paradise did spawn a few pieces of memorabilia, some of which I thought I’d showcase here.
Though it’s been 41 years since the cult daytime drama Dark Shadows originally left the airwaves, the coffin never really remained shut on vampire Barnabas Collins and the show’s cast of other creepy characters. Between spinoff movies, syndicated repeats on television, yearly fan conventions, a 1991 remake series, merchandise and numerous home video releases, interest in the gothic sudser has remained strong throughout the decades.
To celebrate the May issue of Rue Morgue and our coverage of both the original 1966-71 television classic and the soon-to-be released film version from Tim Burton (out this Friday, May 11), here is a look at some of the various Dark Shadows collectibles that have been produced over the past 46 years.
Okay, so you’ve seen The Raven when it opened this past weekend and were so impressed with John Cusack’s performance as Edgar Allan Poe that it made you feel like perhaps picking up a new item to add to your collection of Poe memorabilia. If so, might I suggest the new Edgar Allan Poe bobblehead from Funko.
If you’re in the Toronto area this weekend and want a chance to pick up a new (or vintage) horror collectible and see some of your favourite television, film, wrestling and comic book celebrities, you might want to head down to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre for the Wizard World Toronto Comic Con, which runs tomorrow and Sunday.