The relevance of toys transcends different ages and times. Toys are effective tools used to ease creative thinking and imagination in young minds. While playing with your favorite toy, you tend to create your storyline to support every battle or alliance you create. These battles might not even have any similarity to the original goal of the comic characters. It is nurturing this imaginative thinking that makes toys so important to our development.
Comics are just as attractive toys. People use them in the expression of imaginations with images, incorporated with text and other visual information. Toys have been in existence long before the first comic’s production. But the significant boom in the comics industry in the mid-20th century was the ice breaker. It revealed there were a lot of comic fans that would like to have toy replicas of their favorite comic characters. Thus, this gave rise to the adaptation of comic characters to toys.
Presenting the top ten toys based on comic book characters!
10. Jada Toys’ Princess Diana: Wonder Woman (2017)
Princess Diana of Themyscira wears a gentle mix of red, blue, and gold-plated breastplate alongside her golden bracelets and a sizable boot for a costume. Wonder Woman is a comic about the life and trials of an Amazon princess, Diana. In the comics, one of her origins was that her mother, Queen Hippolyta, molded her from clay. However, the movies use the modern origin, where Diana is the daughter of Zeus. Princess Diana’s parentage endowed her with superhuman strength, speed, flight, super healing, and she is also very skilled in martial art.
Jada Toys manufactured Princess Diana toy in the year 2017 by Jada Toys. The toy is colorful and elegant. It is a must-have among comic fans worldwide.
9. DC Direct’s Batman the Dark Knight Returns Joker (2004)
Joker is renowned as the ultimate Batman’s nemesis even though he has fought other notable superheroes like Superman. The Joker has no extraordinary abilities, no super speed, no fast healing, no flight, nothing superhuman. All he has is his psychopathic mind, his brilliant use of weapons, and his vast knowledge of chemical engineering. The Joker also has a very weird sense of humor and his use of words entertains those that love dark humor.
There are over a dozen companies that produced their version of Joker toys, with his traditional purple suit. The most distinct is the DC Direct’s Joker toy. The idea of a supervillain like Joker adorning a white-looking suit, with two pistols and a miniature doll, satisfies a lot of comic-toys fans.
8. Mezco’s Hellboy Movie 18” Hellboy (2004)
Originally, Nazi’s summoned Hellboy as a baby with the intention of having him fight for them. However, things took a sudden turn when good-meaning men from a government agency rescued him. The Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense raised Hellboy as a normal human child, even though there was nothing normal about the red demon with a strange right-hand, a tail, and a horn he shaves regularly. Hellboy possesses superhuman strength, fast healing and seemingly indestructible. With the influence of his adopted father and the people around him, Hellboy grew to become a defender of good. He fights against any form of evil or violent extraterrestrial beings. Hellboy works for the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense, the same government organization his father works for.
Mezco, in 2004 produced a magnificent 18″ Hellboy toy to the appreciation of fans all over the world. He has his favorite brown jacket with his large pistol safe in its holster and his incredibly large boots.
7. Hasbro’s Guardians of the Galaxy Groot (2014)
What would Groot have to say, and this summary would be a wrap? “I am Groot.” Groot is an extraterrestrial from planet X. Some sources claim his people exiled him for saving a human girl from them. Meanwhile, other sources claim that his exile is due to killing his fellow while defending a lesser being. All being noble acts, it is obvious that Groot lives in exile from his home planet and cannot return home. Groot is one of the Guardians of the Galaxy, a group of protagonists that defends the universe from evil. He is a tree-like creature with super-strength, regenerative healing and he seems immortal. Groot can also extend parts of his body, especially his limbs.
In 2014, Hasbro produced a brown, tree-looking toy Groot alongside most of the Guardians of the Galaxy.
6. Toy Biz’s Hulk – Motion Picture the Incredible Hulk (2003)
An accident exposed Dr. Bruce Banner to gamma rays that drastically changed his life. The man with a genius intellect harbors in himself a mindless green beast whose rage and anger controls it. The Hulk’s emergence is usually to fight evil and he does that exceptionally well. Hulk’s strength only grows the more he gets angry, making it impossible to estimate how strong he is or can be. The Hulk does not fly but he has a considerable long leap. Due to the gamma rays in him, he has regenerative ability. At times, the comics display that the Hulk is indestructible.
Toy Biz produced a line of Hulk toys in 2003, with the toys’ heights ranging from 8″ to 13″. They were unique because of their obvious green color, their monstrous stance, and their ragged trousers. This specific model comes equipped with roaring to mimic that of the Hulk.
5. Hasbro’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine Comic Series (2009)
X-Men Origin: Wolverine depicts tales of an extraordinary mutant. As a kid, he watched his real father murdered by the man he thought was his father. This traumatic experience roused his mutating ability and sends him away from home. After his travails at multiple war fronts and his upgrading with the indestructible adamantium, he meets Professor Xavier’s X-Men and became a prominent member. He possesses superhuman strength, durability, speed, fast healing, retractable adamantium claws, slow aging, and some animal instincts like smell.
Hasbro produced the yellow and blue costumed wolverine with the adamantium claws out in the year 2009, making it a worthy gift for all millennial kids worldwide.
4. Hasbro’s The Amazing Spider-Man 8” Spiderman (2014)
Your friendly neighborhood spider-man used to be a teenager who gains superhuman ability from the bite of a radioactive spider. The Amazing Spider-Man portrays the trials and tribulations of Peter Parker, from the excitement of being a superhero teenager to falling in love, to keeping his identity secret while fighting super villains and keeping his community safe. Spider-Man has superhuman strength, speed, balance, reflexes, fast healing, and the ability to cling to solid objects.
In 2012, Hasbro produced the red and blue action series of Spider-man toys. This particular 8″ figure is specially enhanced with remote-controlled movements.
3. Hasbro’s Black Panther (2017)
Marvel comics realized the idea of a superhero of African descent with the Black Panther comic. Black Panther follows the story of a young man who assumes the throne of his father. Along with being the ruler of Wakanda, the king must also become the protector of the settlement in the form of a superhero. The herb of a vibranium influenced plant bestowed the Black Panther with superhuman abilities. It is possible to reverse this process as the herb combines with the vibranium armored suit to give superhuman strength, speed, reflexes, and durability to the Black Panther.
Hasbro in 2017 produced a series of Black Panther toys. Comic fans well accepted the black figurine with moveable body parts as some even tagged it “the coolest toy in the world”.
2. DC Direct’s Return of Superman Kryptonian Life Suit Superman (2004)
Superman is the greatest superhero character ever made. The populace widely accepts Superman so much that his standards are measuring every other superhero character. Superman is an alien from the planet Krypton. His parents sent him to earth to survive the imminent destruction of the planet. When his space pod landed on the farm, the couple who owned the farm adopted him and brought him up as their son. Superman’s powers include superhuman strength, speed, x-ray vision, heat vision, fast healing, and flight, among others. This episode depicts Superman’s return to earth after leaving for some time to verify the information of the reappearance of his home planet.
Fans all over the world were already familiar with the red and blue Superman toy, it was already in every fan’s collection. In 2004, DC Direct came with a Superman series that donned the iconic black costume.
1. DC Direct’s The Dark Knight Returns Batman (2004)
A human with the tenacity and zeal to see his city purged of crime. Batman would do anything to correct an injustice. Bruce Wayne had a traumatic childhood encounter of witnessing his parents’ murder. This traumatic moment means his parents left him their multi-million company, Wayne Industries. Bruce became a master of martial arts and assumed the identity of a dark superhero to keep his community safe. Unlike most superheroes, Batman does not have any superhuman ability, but his use of high-tech equipment and weapons gave him an edge over his adversaries. The Dark Knight Returns depicts Batman’s return to crime-fighting after he had previously retired. The high point of this issue was his duel with Superman.
DC Direct produced this magnificent figurine in 2004 to widespread acceptance from fans all over the world.
Comic fans’ desire to have figurines from their favorite comics in their possession has driven the toy industry to more adaptations of comic characters to toys. Also, these toys allowed comic lovers to have replicas of their favorite characters and toy lovers to have a wide range of toys to choose from. The use of toys in conserving memories of our favorite comic books is significant and can be a useful tool for igniting learning interest in children.
Author: Chris Ingledue
Bio: I am the founder and owner of Wheeljack’s Lab pop Culture and Toy Shop. My vision has always been to reunite customers with their favorite childhood toys and pop culture, triggering fond memories, and reigniting their imaginations. Every day, I work in the “lab” where it’s Christmas 365 days a year. I scour the internet, like when we had the Sears Catalog of yesteryear, for the next great treasure. Then, I await the arrival of the postman as if he were Santa Claus himself and helping collectors worldwide with their own versions of Christmas. Every day as a vintage toy buyer is an absolute joy!