It's almost time for the 2012 San Diego Comic-Con International, and that means two things: lots of con-exclusive toys and empty wallets! We've broken this year's offerings up by category, and this list focuses solely on action figures-- our one, true love! While last year's highlights went mostly to giant toy-baron Mattel, thanks to figures like Queen Marlena, Stay Puft, and Swamp Thing, this year they only clock in with one entry on the list. Who has swooped in to claim their other spots in our Top Ten, and in our checking account? You'll just have to read on to find out now that all of the companies attending SDCC have FINALLY revealed their exclusives!-- we think.
10. Comic-Con Explosion Godzilla (S.H. MonsterArts)
The King of the Monsters shows up at SDCC with this figure from the incredible S.H. MonsterArts line. The figure is highly articulated, intricately sculpted, and with the translucent orange color-scheme, just the right amount of different to be a great exclusive. Plus, Godzilla's packaging features artwork of him decimating the San Diego Convention Center as our fellow geeks run in terror!
Available at the BlueFin booth #3545, 3547, 3549, 3644, 3646, 3648
9. Invisible Bilbo Baggins (The Hobbit)
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy had an amazing 6" toy line that featured innovative sculpting and articulation coupled with a huge character assortment. When Bridge Direct was first announced as having the license for The Hobbit we were more than skeptical, but thanks to this recently unveiled con-exclusive figure of Bilbo, we're feeling a little more comfortable. Being the first figure released from arguably one of the most anticipated films of all time cements him firmly on this list.
Available at the Bridge Direct/Gentle Giant/Weta booth #3513 and Entertainment Earth # 2343
8. Brock Samson (Venture Bros.)
The first chance to own any of the 3 3/4" Venture Bros. figures, by Bif Bang Pow!, and it happens to be Brock Samson? Awesome. Oh, and he's covered in the blood of his enemies? Doubly awesome! Some say that having Brock Samson tear through our Cobra figures as a new member of the Joe team is far too much badassery for our feeble minds to handle-- but handle it they shall!
Available at the Entertainment Earth booth #2343
7. Bruticus (Transformers: Fall of Cybertron)
Bruticus is not only one huge Transformers figure, based on the upcoming TF: Fall of Cybertron game, but he can also be taken apart so you have 5 separate Decepticons--each with it's own full transformation! Not too shabby. While all of the bots it takes to build this goliath will be available individually in stores, they feature a con-exclusive paint scheme. Plus, who likes to wait?!
Available at the HasbroToyShop.com booth #3329
6. Bruce Wayne to Batman (The Dark Knight Rises Movie Masters)
Out of all of Mattel's SDCC-only releases, this Movie Masters figure quickly stood out to us as the best of the bunch! The figure comes in a package that is almost as elaborate as the figure itself, with built in sound effects and a nice slipcase that shows off the logo from the film. The ability to change Bruce Wayne into Batman, while having been done in previous toy lines, seems to go pretty well here; but, we'll let you know for sure in an upcoming review.
Available at the Mattel booth # 3029
5. Lt. Falcon (G.I. Joe)
In the original, animated G.I. Joe Movie, fans were introduced to Lt. Falcon, the cocky Green Beret voiced by another staple of the 1980s: Don Johnson! Sadly, this isn't a figure of Sunny Crockett in fatigues, but it IS a very solid addition to Sideshow's stellar G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero 1/6th scale lineup. This exclusive figure comes with a clean-shaven head, and the stubbled, battle-worn version you see above! He's one of the more expensive figures on this list, but for collector's of the Joe line, this is going to be a must buy!
Available at the Sideshow Collectibles booth #1929
4. Shadow Hunter Leonardo (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Another late entry onto the exclusives scene that has been almost impossible to get information about, this figure from Playmates new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles line uses the same sculpt as their basic Leonardo figure but gives fans an insanely cool paint job reminiscent of comic book shading. We love the TMNT, and this guy is probably going to disappear from the Nick booth incredibly fast-- like a ninja!
Available at the Nickelodeon booth #4113
3. Batman and Joker Black & White Figures (Play Arts Kai)
Yeah, we cheated by lumping these two in as one entry-- but like the Joker, we have no remorse. The Play Arts Kai line has been setting the bar higher and higher as of late, and the figures from Batman: Arkham Asylum are largely responsible for that. These are fitting exclusives since fans have the option to buy the regular color retail versions, and that these are so incredibly badass that people will be willing to stand in line for them. Check out tons of more photos here to help really drive the point home that they deserve to squeeze into the number 3 spot.
Available at the Square Enix booth #3829
2. Hero From the Sky Ash (Evil Dead 2)
Bruce Motherf**kin' Campbell! (We're pretty sure that's his actual middle name) This figure is gonna be high on the list of practically every attendee that knows what's up in the world of Deadite killing and loud mouthed-braggadocio. This figure utilizes the upcoming Ash sculpt for Series 2, but puts a spin on things by giving him a (mostly) grayscale paint job, and a nice base to be displayed on. also, he features far more articulation in the legs than that prototype photo gives him credit for, so no whining about him being a statue! We predict Ashley here being one of the harder to come by toys from this years show-- at a decent price anyway.
Available at the NECA booth #3145
1. Uncanny X-Force 3 Pack (Marvel Legends)
Continuing the monochrome (sort of) domination of our top 3 entries is this entry from Hasbro's Marvel Legends line. This pack has a number of things going for it that put it in the top slot of our list:
Marvel Legends are some of the most fan-clamored action figures of the past year. Archangel.
Uncanny X-Force is a blood-splattered good time. Archangel.
3 main characters from the book are in the set. Archangel.
Available at the HasbroToyShop.com booth #3329
While the tag-team of Hasbro and Marvel struck again with another Legends exclusive, we're sad to see another hopeful from last year, Bandai, not make a comeback. Their SDCC-Exclusive Lion-O, from the ThunderCats Classics line, had us chomping at the bit for more; but, over the course of the year, that excitement has shrunk faster than the Sword of Omens. This year, all of our nostalgia-filled hopes seem to lie in the three-fingered (and toed) grasp of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Don't let us down, Playmates!
As usual, feel free to chime in with your own "most wanted" SDCC-exclusive figures in the comments section, and keep an eye out for our Top Ten SDCC-Exclusive Collectibles List. That's the place where you'll see our top statues, knick-knacks, and vehicles/playsets *cough* Super Heli-Carrier *cough*.
Stay tuned to MTV Geek for all your toy coverage from SDCC 2012!