We’ve gotten some rest but are back today with even more coverage from Toy Fair 2018 here in New York City with a look at the most anticipated new licensee of the year, McFarlane Toys.
Debuting at last summer’s Las Vegas Star Trek convention, owner Todd McFarlane and McFarlane Toys brand managers Jeremy Sodek and Evin Dempsey held panels at STLV to discuss upcoming plans for their new Trek license, including a series of seven-inch character figures from the Original Series and The Next Generation, along with kicking off a wave of Star Trek: Discovery products to include figures of Michael Burnham and T’Kuvma, and their take on a Discovery phaser toy.
We caught up with Sodek and Dempsey once more this weekend at Toy Fair, where the company showed off their nearly-finalized first releases for the year. First up is the 7″ Captain Kirk and Captain Picard figures, each with a series of hands and accessories to complete the set.
Slotted for release sometime around mid-April, the 7″ figures will retail at a $19.99 price point. There was no sign yet of the previously-announced Burnham or T’Kuvma figures, but Sodek told us that their designs are still being worked through licensing and likeness approvals.
With T’Kuvma’s surprising death in the Star Trek: Discovery series opener having “thrown us for a loop,” says Sodek, the company is working to make sure that Burnham will have some character to “partner with Burnham when she comes out [for sale].”
The highlight of our visit was a close-up look at the early-stage Discovery phaser prototype, which was released from manufacturing as a test build just in the last few days in time for Toy Fair. While it’s not painted or colored, it does have working electronics and lighting (as we feature in the video above).
Unlike the ANOVOS phaser prop replica — which was intended to recreate the filming prop as a display piece using exacting processes and materials — the McFarlane phaser will be an injection-molded recreation with sound effects and additional lighting components.
The Type I phaser has its own sound and lighting built-in, which in turn activates the lighting on the Type II grip when docked in the handle. When completed, the spring-load battery pack in the grip will also have its own lighting to detail power levels in the toy.
Also featured on display was a mock-up of the planned phaser packaging, including a stand-in ‘exploded’ phaser insert illustrating the separable nature of the toy.
The McFarlane Discovery phaser will be set under $40.00 when it hits stores later this year, and from the feedback we’ve seen online and on social media, it’s sure to find its place into many fans’ collections.
McFarlane isn’t announcing any additional new Trek products past this trio right now, but Sodek did tell us that since they have the license to all non-Kelvin Timeline Trek series and films, they may look towards some of the other chapters of the franchise for their next ideas.
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These new Star Trek products are also set to arrive in the new 2018 packaging theme we mentioned in our earlier Toy Fair reports from Round2 and Gentle Giant Toys, with colored banners and lead character imagery accompanying the sleek modern designs — Kirk/gold for TOS, Picard/red for TNG, Sisko/grey for DS9, and Discovery with Burnham/burnt orange. (No sign of Voyager or Enterprise editions yet.)
The Eaglemoss USS Shenzhou model being the first new box style to hit consumers (albeit in a special ‘dark’ version of the design), and additional early-issue Official Starships Collection re-releases to follow in similarly-themed dark styles.
We expect that new Trek products will be transitioning over to the new design style in the coming months, as our friends at FanSets tell us they are changing over from the familiar ‘blue clouds’ product packaging that’s been seen on Trek merchandise for the last few years to the new 2018 design.
Our Toy Fair coverage isn’t over yet! Keep coming back throughout the next few days for more from the trade show, including a look at a new Star Trek game set to arrive later this year!