PREVIEW: Star Trek (2009 movie)

So, via USA Today this week, Playmates Toys has leaked the first product photos of their items from the upcoming Star Trek movie. It’s an interesting cross-section to say the least: the figures are in multiple scales (though it seems to be clear that only one of these scales will have any significant number of […]

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The “Lost” Star Trek Characters

In previous ToyBox columns, I have complained long and hard about how Playmates failed to produce action figures of some of the more popular latter-day Star Trek characters. This is very, very true. However, it was brought to my attention that I was wrong on one count – and it was also brought to my […]

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Star Trek: The Next Generation Wave Four (1994)

In 1994, it was clear that Star Trek: The Next Generation was on its way to syndication heaven, as the series was due to be retired and promoted to movie duty. Playmates had diversified its line of Star Trek figures in anticipation of this, branching out to create ranges of Deep Space Nine and Classic […]

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Star Trek: First Contact Action Figures (1996)

Welcome to our look at the Star Trek: First Contact toys, or “how Playmates killed the Star Trek action figures.” I admit to being frequently critical of Playmates Toys’ for its handling of the Star Trek line from 1996 onward, and here is where I think they went wrong. With the eighth Star Trek film […]

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Star Trek: The Movie Era (1996)

1996: Voyager was over a year old, First Contact was on the way, and Worf had been a fixture on Deep Space Nine for several months. In a way, this time frame was the last hurrah for Star Trek merchandising, before the public tired too much of the franchise. Playmates, having seen very limited success […]

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Star Trek: The Next Generation Wave Three (1993)

A few months after Playmates’ second wave of Star Trek: The Next Generation action figures hit the shelves, the third wave was released, introducing many more episode-specific characters to the mix. Gone were the tricorder/phaser “holsters” which had graced the Enterprise crew member figures since the first wave. Sadly, the cheesy phasers – complete with […]

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Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Wave Two (1995)

Where the first wave of Playmates’ newly-launched Deep Space Nine range of Star Trek action figures was a resounding success hailed by collectors, the second wave had many people – ranging from serious Trek collectors to casual fans – scratching their heads in confusion. The second wave was the wave of Stupid Uniform Tricks, a […]

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Star Trek: Voyager Action Figures (1995-97)

Playmates learned one valuable lesson from the first wave of Deep Space Nine figures: get the figures on the shelves within a year of the show’s premiere. The Deep Space Nine toys took a year to hit the stores, and though their quality was arguably worth the wait, the buzz surrounding the launch of that […]

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Star Trek: The Cage Action Figures (1996)

Despite releasing characters from A Piece Of The Action and City On The Edge Of Forever, Playmates’ most inspired choice of episode-specific classic Trek characters was its four-piece subset of toys from The Cage, the original pilot which NBC rejected.

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Star Trek: Generations Action Figures (1994)

Here’s an entire series of toys fraught with bloopers. In pre-production for Star Trek: Generations, which premiered over the Thanksgiving 1994 holidays, a new costume design – rather a spiffy one, I always thought – was conceived for the crew of the Enterprise-D in their first film. But at the last moment, despite the fact […]

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