April’s Tip for New Collectors. I’ve decided to start a tradition in which I’ll be pointing out an important tip for new collectors each month. There are a lot of things that can go wrong when collecting figures, so having an extra piece of knowledge here and there never hurts.
Never tug, yank, or pull on the straps holding figures in their packaging. Figures are typically held in a plastic bubble with rubber bands, twist ties, or other foul devices used to keep them out of collectors’ hands. Some people get impatient and try to fight their way through these shackles and end up damaging their figures. Always use small scissors to make an incision in the straps to more easily free a figure. Knives can damage paint, and ruthlessly tugging on straps can break joints.
I have more tips on how to open an action figure package safely, so take a look and good luck on getting your next figure out of its plastic prison totally safe and sound.
Updates on Mattel and DC Comics. There’s a lot of confusion regarding Mattel and their DC Comics properties these days. DC Universe Classics is long gone, its replacement DCU All Stars is being limited to one small wave, and the Young Justice figures are also dead in the water. Things certainly don’t look good for the future of DC Comics based toy lines at Mattel.
That said, representatives from Mattel have been reassuring collectors that there is life in DC’s brands yet. Although the two flagship lines, both the 6-inch classic-styled figures and Young Justice are being canceled, Mattel supposedly intends to “relaunch” the brand with an assortment in 2013 that’s yet to be announced.
Mattel issued a few words explaining the reasoning behind recent changes. “Overall, we need to adjust to retailers, consumers and what’s selling in volumes that can be supported.” Essentially Mattel claims to need stronger support to produce such a wide array of collector-focused lines. Despite their comments, the blame can’t be placed on collectors. It’s a function of a weak brand identity from DC Comics and mishandled lines from Mattel.
Regardless of the direction taken by Mattel with DC Comics based action figures in the near future, it certainly seems the golden era of the Mattel and DC Comics relationship is over.