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The Walking Dead TV Series Action Figures
Despite the success of AMC’s first two series of “The Walking Dead” TV Series (and the third series releasing in October 2012), based on Robert Kirkman & Tony Moore/Charlie Adlard’s brilliant Comic Book Series of the same name, there has not been a huge amount of related merchandise issued in the last couple of years, however one set that have recently caught my eye are the excellent 5” Action Figures produced under license by McFarlane Toys and the first wave being released in December 2011 and the second wave due for release October 2012. The figures are intended as collectibles rather than “toys” and marketed at the 13+ age range, so due to their graphic nature, not a great gift for minors!. Some of these are becoming very collectible and some of the figures, in particular Daryl Dixon fetching quite a hefty premium on sites such as eBay. The attention to detail on these figures is incredible and the head sculpt’s and character likeness’s are very accurate (obtained from a 3d scan of the actors faces, according to McFarlane), which is something that is often missing on figures of this scale. So if you’re as much a fan of the TV Series and Action figures in general, like me, then these are well worth checking out. McFarlane also produce a set of figures Action Figures based on the Comic book characterisation, which I have detailed in a separate hub - http://kcent247.hubpages.com/hub/The-Walking-Dead-Comic-Series-Action-Figures . Pricing guides below are an indication only and based on prices in September 2012, on their initial release the figures were retailing at US$15.99/UK£13.95 and some are starting to already appreciate in value, some more than others.
Deputy Rick Grimes TV Series 1 Version
The figure based on the central character has an excellent face sculpt and is instantly recognisable as the British actor Andrew Lincoln who plays the lead role. The figure has 15 points of articulation and comes on a blister card with 2 revolvers, rifle, baseball bat, grenade and walkie-talkie. The Rick Grimes figure appears to be holding it’s value quite well, typically retailing at around $24/£14. McFarlane did also produce a limited edition of this figure, as a Toys R Us exclusive as a Black and White figure (with blood splatters!) and this is already becoming quite hard to find and thus demanding a price premium, typically retailing at around $60-$70/£40-£50, if you can find one.
Daryl Dixon TV Series 1 Version
The 13cm Daryl Dixon figure has a superb face/head sculpt of actor Norman Reedus and comes with his trademark crossbow, hunting knife, pickaxe, fire axe and a string of dead squirrels! The figure has 13 points of articulation. The Daryl Dixon figure does appear to be fast becoming the most collectable of the series, not sure if McFarlane issued a smaller number of this particular figure, but it seems likely. As of September 2012, the figure was typically retailing at US$60/UK£40, but I have seen this figure reaching nearly $100 on eBay auctions in recent days
Zombie Walker TV Series 1 Version
The business-suited Zombie Walker is based on the Zombie Rick Grimes encounters on his trip into Atlanta in the first series. The figure doesn’t include any accessories but does have a wind-up walking action which is a little hit and miss but does make an excellent static figure. The Zombie Walker Figure appears to be more numerous than the two figures mentioned and if you look hard enough, particularly on eBay, you should find them at a discount. eBay and Amazon retailer – “Buy for Less Online” seem to have a large stock at the present time with large numbers appearing for auction on Ebay UK recently and going for around £6 including delivery, although on most other site they are typically retailing at $16.00/£10.00.
Zombie Biter TV Series 1 Version
The Zombie Biter is based on the walker that appeared near the camp in series 1 feeding on a deer carcass and was ultimately stopped by the appearance of Daryl Dixon with a crossbow bolt through the head. The figure has the usual excellent gruesome details and comes with a large hunk of deer meat and a spring loaded jaw mechanism. As with the Zombie Walker, the figure is relatively common and can be found at a similar value to the Zombie Walker
Walking Dead Comic Book Version Figures
As mentioned above, the McFarlane Action Figures come in two variants, those detailed already based on the TV Series, but there is also a Series of figures based on the Comic Books, I intend to detail these in a separate page, I would however mention, that on balance, as far as the Zombies are concerned, I personally think the Comic Book Versions are more interesting!
Series 2 – due for release October 2013
To coincide with the airing of the third series of the TV show, McFarlane have announced the release of a new wave of figures based on Series 2. These figures are already available for pre-order from a number of retailers such as Amazon, Walmart, Toys R Us and various retailers on eBay and will be on general release by mid October 2012.
Rick Grimes TV Series 2
Featuring a new sculpt of Rick Grimes, this time in civilian clothes and sheriff hat. The figure has interchangeable hands to accommodate different weapons, including a revolver, rifle and an animal catcher, for dealing with “walkers”. The figure has 14 points of articulation. I’m not convinced that the face sculpt is as good as the first series but the figure should retail for US$14.99/UK£14.00, although I’m sure it can be picked up slightly cheaper if you search around.
Shane Walsh TV Series 2
Series 2 sees the addition of Rick Grimes’ friend and colleague Shane Walsh. Featuring a very good facial likeness of actor Jon Bernthal, the figure shows the shaven headed Walsh in civilian attire and carrying a single barrel shotgun. The figure comes with an “automated” gun-raising action and comes with 6 points of articulation. The figures in series should all retail at the same value. At a guess, I would imagine the Shane figure will become quite collectable as it is a popular character.
RV Zombie TV Series 2 Version
The RV Zombie is based on the zombie at the start of series 2 that attacks Andrea in Dale’s RV and as such, has a removable screwdriver in it’s eye socket and has a flip-back head action.
Well Zombie Series 2
The grotesque bloated well zombie is the zombie found at the bottom of the water well on Hershall’s farm, which the group managed to remove by rope using Glenn and tinned ham as bait! True to the story, this action figure comes with seven points of articulation and a pull apart body (revealing gooey guts) along with attached rope and tinned ham.
Bicycle Girl Zombie Series 2
This is probably one of my favourites from the whole series and is the first Zombie we (and Rick Grimes) encounter at the start of the first series. The figure depicts the crawling maimed zombie Rick finds next to her bicycle and is displayed on a base and comes with a damaged mobile phone and removable jeans (revealing what remains of the bones of her missing limbs) and has a moving, reaching motion on her left arm.
If the Second Series of figures proves as successful as the first, which in likelihood they will, given the success of the TV show and the collectible status of the first wave of figures, then I think it will be very likely that there will be further waves of figures released likely in early 2013, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we see further excellent figures depicting Lorri Grimes (Rick’s wife), Dale Horvarth, Glenn, Andrea and Michonne, along with various additional zombies.