Awhile back, I found a single issue of the old comic magazine Hero Illustrated. I also had plans to showcase old ads from comics and have a couple Wizard magazines as well. That is why I decided to just showcase them in one new feature. Every so often I will showcase certain things from those mediums and for the first article in this feature, I chose stuff from Hero Illustrated!
IT CAME FROM....
SO what was Hero Illustrated? In the height of comics, two major magazines fought it out, Hero and Wizard! Hero lost and lasted a few years or so only I believe. However Hero was my favorite. One cool thing is they had ashcans, cards, etc. polybagged with their magazine. However due to this, you could not look into the magazine. This was before Wizard started having regular giveaways like cards and comics I believe but could be wrong.
For this article, since this is primarily a toy blog, I stuck with toys.
Like Wizard, they previewed the newest toys coming at the time.
Wild C.A.T.S. was a comic produced by Wildstorm under Image Comics (but now the Windstorm characters are owned by DC Comics!) At the time of this article, CBS was about to launch an all new cartoon based on that comic. These toys, that were based on the cartoon, were done by Playmates and were pretty cool. I owned both Hellspont and Zealot (and wish I had more) and wish that I still had them! There would be at least one more wave and a comic wave as well, but sadly as the cartoon was not popular, the toyline vanished. What is interseting is how they predicted more comic toys were to eventually come. Marvel and DC would continue being powerhouses but McFarlane Toys would release a YoungBlood and Wetworks line, many unknown companies would release toys based on comics and so would the comic companies themselves. Even more interesting is that playmates themselves would release a Savage Dragon series based on the cartoon and a TMNT line done by a famous comic artist!
Speaking of Marvel....
At the time, Marvel was becoming a powerhouse on tv (something DC is now days). They had X-Men and Spider-Man going on Fox and were about to release the "Marvel Action Hour!" This hour long block was syndicated on Saturdays in most markets. Sadly that is what would doom it as well. In many networks (if not all), it was brodcasted on networks that had Saturday morning blocks already like ABC, CBS, NBC, and FOX! In Georgia, I believed it was on Fox. This is bad because it had to be shown before the network's programming, meaning 6 or 7AM! Though the shows only lasted 2 seasons (26 episodes), we got some great toys from them.
These would eventually lead to some great figures being made (and some have never been made sense). We also would get lines based on Ghost Rider and more after Toy Biz realized that people wanted much more than just Spidey and the X-Men!
I was a fan of Star Trek, but did not become a "Trekkie" until the next generation era. I must admit that I did not discover it until around season 5 or 6 though. I loved Star Trek 4 and 6 but I was not a huge fan of the movies until Generations. I also loved these figures. One thing that shocked me was Be'tor and Lursa as I never thought a toy line in toy stores would reveal so much (lol).Remember this was a far different time than it is today. Playmates, who was still enjoying the success of Star Trek as toys as TMNT was beginning to wind down, made the movie toys.
Thought I would do a close-up of the last two articles. One thing that should be noted is that Todd toys would later become a small company by the name of McFarlane toys! (Yes I'm being sarcastic!)