I’m A Kidult
I like toys. Period. I like them because they open up my imagination to where anything is possible. It excites me, it makes me happy and that freedom is liberating.
My journey into the plastic world of Action Figures began in 1977-78 just like a lot of people in my generation. It all started when my brother got me my very first Star Wars figures. I don’t remember which ones were first, but I do remember having adventures with Luke Skywalker and Ben Kenobi, and they were quickly joined by Han Solo and Chewbacca. Those figures were just so much fun to have in those days. Eventually the collection would grow a little and we’d have some fun adventures. We would often mix our Star Wars figures with the rest of the toys that usually included the Fisher Price people. During the summer season, our adventures were literally all day and night.
As time went on, my interests grew with other lines. The first non-Star Wars figure was Snake Eyes from G.I. Joe, prior to the swivel arm battle grip articulation. I started getting some other figures like the Lone Ranger, Captain Power, and even Michael Knight and K.I.T.T. I was hooked and enjoyed what I had, but a big turning point came in the 4th grade.
Masters of the Universe hit the scene and I wanted in. I remember some of my classmates would bring to school a few figures here and there and I was captivated. They were so different from Star Wars and so much larger it was a whole new world to me. Finally over a weekend, I was able to get He-Man and my journey to Eternia had begun. My collection wasn’t anything great like my classmates or neighbors, but I got the ones I really liked. I never got Man-At-Arms or Mer-Man which was strange, but I did have some harder to find ones like Webstor and the Sorceress. Go figure.
Eventually I became friends with more of the neighborhood kids and the next big thing that we got into was the world of Cybertron. The Transformers hit and that’s where my interest in shiny things and things that light up really hit its stride. They were just some of the coolest toys to have and were always hard to find. Megatron was by far my favorite and I treasured him like no other. During the summer all of the kids would get together and we’d have massive Transformers adventures. We also got into G.I. Joe, but nothing could compare to the robots in disguise.
Once I hit high school, my interests changed into sports and girls and working. But deep down inside I still loved the world of plastic playthings. So when Batman Forever started ramping up for promotion, I started to get curious about the new world of toys. I was a big Val Kilmer fan so when he agreed to play Batman I was happy and wanted a Batman figure based on him. At the bookstore I would browse through Tomart’s Action Figure Digest and I remember seeing some of the promo shots for the figures and I began making trips to Toys R Us. One day, the figures were available and I was giddy just like I was when I got He-Man. Eventually I got a few more figures and the Batmobile and my interest in the plastic world was rekindled.
Then in 1995 Kenner announced they would be re-doing Star Wars, and all bets were off. I swore at first I would get a few of the characters I really wanted, but that didn’t last. It also helped that they were relatively cheap. I think the thrill of the hunt was actually more fun than the figures themselves, but regardless I felt young again. Along came 1999 and I fondly remember going to Toys R Us at midnight and waiting in line to get that chance to purchase figures from the Phantom Menace.
Over the years I’ve collected too many things, but it makes me happy so I don’t care. I’ve gained a strong interest in the 1/6 scale world because the craftsmanship is amazing these days. Years before it was like collecting dolls, but now they’re almost a perfect replica of people. It all really started when I went to the San Diego Comic-Con one year and I managed to pick up an early Hot Toys figure called ‘The Director’ which was obviously patterned after George Lucas. Little did I know how powerful Hot Toys would become, but that figure remains a sentimental favorite.
I’ve slowed down a bit recently, being more picky, but that fire of interest within is still as strong as ever. It’s my hope I can express that passion with this website. I don’t expect readers, but it’s an outlet for me and that’s the whole point.