LINK AND EPONA STATUE

In North America, Nintendo has always been a little weird about its merchandise. There’s been a lot of cheap stuff, a lot of strange branded items, but not a lot of true collector’s pieces. And in an age of high-detail, high-end figures and collectibles being issued for the big game releases, it’s odd that some of the most enduring characters and franchises still haven’t gotten their due.

Until recently, of course, with the release of Metroid and Zelda items the likes of which we’ve been waiting for for far too long. Case in point:

The statue stands a whopping 17 inches tall and features Link on a rearing Epona, brandishing the Master Sword and looking exactly as awesome as you know he should.

New THUNDERCATS Figures

THUNDERCATS figures are now ready to ship out! The first three out of the gate are Lion-O, Panthro and the evil Mumm-Ra at a 6-inch scale. Each one looks absolutely great and is loyal to their original designs. These are real treats for fans.

And following that, you can grab Lion-O and Tygra as 8-inch figures, wielding the Sword of Omens and a cat-o-nine-tails respectively.

Entertainment Weekly FIRST LOOK: CAPTAIN AMERICA

We’ve already seen a couple images from the upcoming CAPTAIN AMERICA film, but now Entertainment Weekly is bringing us something more…

For fans of superhero movies, the most patriotic holiday on next year’s calendar won’t fall on July 4th, but exactly 18 days later. That’s when Paramount Pictures will release Captain America: The First Avenger, a big budget adaptation of the Marvel Comics shield-baring super-soldier. The new issue of Entertainment Weekly offers your first look at star Chris Evans in the hero’s red, white and blue threads — but you can get a peek at the man in uniform right here, right now.

Our story also brings you to the set of the London-based production, directed by Joe Johnston (The Wolfman, October Sky). During a break in shooting, Evans — on his second tour of Marvel duty, having played the Human Torch in Fox’s Fantastic Four films — explained he was reluctant to accept the call of Captain America, in part because he had already portrayed a Marvel-ous mystery man. Of course, he also worried about the potential cost of failure, but he also worried the potential cost of fame should the movie be a hit.

Our story also brings you to the set of the London-based production, directed by Joe Johnston (The Wolfman, October Sky). During a break in shooting, Evans — on his second tour of Marvel duty, having played the Human Torch in Fox’s Fantastic Four films — explained he was reluctant to accept the call of Captain America, in part because he had already portrayed a Marvel-ous mystery man. Of course, he also worried about the potential cost of failure, but he also worried the potential cost of fame should the movie be a hit.

“At the time, I remember telling a buddy of mine, ‘If the movie bombs, I’m f—-ed. If the movie hits, I’m f—-ed!’” After declining the part three times, Evans took a meeting with Marvel execs and Johnston and was dazzled by their plans for the movie. He still felt wary about suiting up for Captain America — but then he had an epiphany. “I was just scared,” he says. “I realized my whole decision making process was fear based, and you never want to make a decision out of fear.’” Evans signed a six-picture deal with Marvel to play the character, and he has no regrets: “I can’t believe was almost too chicken to play Captain America.”

The movie — which also serves to set up Marvel’s 2012 superhero team-up, The Avengers — hews closely to Captain America’s WWII-era origins. The year is 1942, and Steve Rogers is a scrawny lad who desperately wants to fight Nazis for his country but can’t because he’s been deemed physically unfit. His fate — and his physique — is radically transformed when he signs up for Project: Rebirth, a secret military operation that turns wimps into studs using drugs and assorted sci-fi hoo-ha. There’s a love interest (Major Peggy Carter, played Haley Atwell), there’s a sidekick (Bucky Barnes, played by Sebastian Stans), and there’s the Red Skull (Hugo Weaving), Hitler’s treacherous head of advanced weaponry, whose own plan for world domination involves a magical object known as The Tesseract (comic fans know it better as The Cosmic Cube).

“The interesting thing about this character is that he’s an everyman who in the course of a few minutes become a perfect human specimen. That has to create some interesting personal issues,” says Johnston. “I saw it as an opportunity to make a superhero movie that felt real, that didn’t have to rely on an overabundance of fantasy elements.”

If you’re a Captain America fan counting down to the film, then here are a couple figures you might enjoy in the mean time–you know, until the movie brings a boatload more!

MARVEL SELECT CAPTAIN AMERICA
An 8-inch figure sculpted by Sam Greenwell, it features a gargoyle base that makes it awesome for display and can be posed in a ton of different ways thanks to its 14 points of articulation.

MARVEL LEGENDS SERIES 1: CAPTAIN AMERICA
From the first series of the amazing Marvel Legends line, this Cap figure is based on his first appearance in 1941, when he was created by Simon and Kirby to stand as both character and icon in the Marvel Universe and the American consciousness.

KOTOBUKIYA CAPTAIN AMERICA STATUE
The brilliant designers at Kotobukiya present this 12.5-inch statue of Cap holding his iconic shield aloft and looking ready to face whatever enemy of his nation should come his way.

CAPTAIN AMERICA vs RED SKULL TWIN PACK
From Marvel Legends comes a 2-pack that represented one of Marvel’s greatest conflicts: that between Captain America and the villainous Red Skull. The arch-enemies come with a 32-page comic that explores their long-lasting feud!

MARVEL LEGENDS SERIES 8: ULTIMATE CAPTAIN AMERICA
The modern-day costume for Steve Rogers comes to life in this Ultimate Captain America from Marvel Legends’ eighth series. Standing about 7 inches, he comes with a Marvel TCG card!

MIGHTY MUGGS RED SKULL
The hyper-stylized MIGHTY MUGGS line brings us this Previews exclusive RED SKULL 7-inch figure. Looking surprisingly adorable for…well, a red skull, he still possesses a withering glare and that cruel smile.

San Diego Comic Con 2010: PICTURES!

Well, I’ve just gotten back from San Diego and I’m very pleased to say that it was an absolute blast, if a little lighter on actual comic content than I’m used to. Really, though, I suppose it’s just the way of things that TV and movies seem to have officially taken precedence over the comic book stuff and at least it’s bringing people into the show where they’ll discover the stuff they might have missed out on! Plus, with movies like Red and shows like The Walking Dead, it’s further proof that there’s a symbiotic relationship between the media forms and that is definitely a good thing.

But without further ado, I’ll get to the meat of this post, THE PICTURES! Take a look at some of the cool items, set pieces and costumes from the biggest con in the world!

And if you want a little more, be sure to check out our previous post on SDCC EXCLUSIVES!

San Diego Comic Con 2009 Photos

Yes….it’s time to share some pictures from this year’s SDCC 2009. There is a common theme here but I will let you figure it out.