Toy Line Nirvanna
You can ask any geek when they gave up action figures and they’ll almost always give you a heartbreaking tale of selling off their precious He-Man collection to pay for books at college, or of some bitchy step-mom dumping a ton of Star Wars figs, including Boba Fett, at a garage sale.
Well, the joke’s on them because now you can buy back your lost history for multiple times what the originals cost.
This is actually the cheapest line in the list, and the least action figurey of them all. Minimates are small Lego-esque figures that share roughly the same shape, but with different hair, printing and accessories. The result is a line of over 1000 different figures covering everything from Back to the Future to Ghostbusters to your favorite Marvel Comics characters. Low cost and small size means you can quickly gather a collection to take over your desk at work, or fill out your book shelves at home.
Minimates Central is a good clearing-house for information about this line.
Your girlfriend is sick of hearing you talk about how Peter was your favorite Ghostbuster, but thanks to Mattel, you can buy a 6-inch version of the icon, along with all the other Ghostbusters and a few other characters from the movies, to stage your own version of the first two movies.
Marvel characters done in GI Joe size, this line has been going strong since around 2009 and with single figures, two-packs, collector sets and lines related to Marvel’s various movies like Thor, Iron Man and Captain America, you can have your own army of Marvel heroes over 100 figures strong. Big name characters like Hulk, Wolverine and Spider-Man have had many, many different figures in only a few short years, so you’re almost guaranteed to get your favorite characters in plastic form.
DC Universe Classics
Like Marvel, DC experimented with the GI Joe scale for a little while, but after learning that nobody wanted to spend $7 for the same ape-fisted body painted a different color, they focused on the DC Universe Classics line, shortened to DCUC. This line is a bit of a premium line, costing about $15 apiece in stores, but you walk away with well sculpted likenesses of all your favorite DC characters. The future of the line is hazy, and in 2011 Mattel offered fans an opportunity to subscribe to the line, receiving one figure a month, claiming that in 2012, while figures will still be available at retail, there’s going to be a lot of changes in the way they do business.
Masters of the Universe Classics
Whether you want a wicked He-Man figure, or you’re finally picking up She-Ra (for your girlfriend, of course), the Masters of the Universe Classics line is a chance to relive the glory days of Eternia by filling your bedroom with half-naked, harness wearing beefcakes. That came out wrong. Just go buy one and you’ll fall in love again. Wait, again, that came out wrong.
He-Man.org has tons of pictures and info on all Masters of the Universe toys.