Tabby (
Thu, 01 Jan 1998 16:49:04 -0700

>This is my thinking on why they call it an action figure instead of a model.
>This ad appeared in a comic book. One of the strong side businesses in the
>comics world is action figures. There is a strong collectors appeal in
>action figure sales, I think the ad is targetted at these collectors, rather
>than little kids who play with their figures in the sandbox.
>I think that anyone who buys GW kits expected action figures is going to be
>disappointed long before they fall apart from thrashing... they won't get
>past the 'some assembly required' :)
>-scott \\

I think you're *vastly* over-estimating the durability of american
comic-book action figures. First off, comic-book figure collectors buy them
for display, not playability. I work at a collector store with an enormous
comic action figure section, and once out of the package nearly all of them
start to decline. In particular, the joints tend to weaken over time
regardless of what pose is used for thier display. On top of that, weapons
and accessories tend to be very poorly cast, break easily, and often
detract from the display value of the figure.

This is even worse for the premium comic book figures, the sculpted "Spawn"
style toys such as McFarlane and Resaurus figures. Even the Xebec
Hokoto(sp) No Ken figures start to fall apart almost as soon as thier
removed from the package. The McFarlane figures are especially infamous for
not being able to stand, primarily due to poor quality control.

On the other hand, I have Gundam models that have been standing on my shelf
in the same position for four years with no sign of decline. Sure, if I
played with my snap-built 1/144 Serpent it would fall apart, but as a
simple display piece it's more durable than the "Apocalypse" & "Thing"
figures, and much more posable than my Beta Ray Bill fig.

The main audience for comic-book action figures are collectors who buy them
to put them on display. Snap-fit models with Bandai poly-cap joints are
more posable and have a much long shelf life than Toy Biz or McFarlane figs..

Tabby, the Robot/Action Figure/RPG/Anime/Pokemon Guy at Pop Culture

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