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Star Trek Headed Back To Playmates January 27, 2008

by John Tenuto , Filed under: Toys , trackback

It has been the stated intent that the new Star Trek movie will move the venerable Trek franchise back into the broader mainstream audience. One area where this will manifest itself is in merchandising and has learned that a big step has been taken by awarding the toy license for the new Star Trek movie to Playmates Toys. This is actually a ‘coming home’ for Trek toys as Playmates held the license for much of the 90s but dropped it in 2000.

Details are still sketchy but sources indicate that (at a minimum) Playmates will be making action figures, prop toys and ship models from the new feature film. Work on prototypes has already started (at least for the figures). It is expected that an official announcement will come in February during the ToyFair trade show in New York. Toy retailers (but not the general public) may even be given a preview of the Playmates Star Trek line so they can make purchase decisions for winter 2008. Diamond Select/Art Asylum, who picked up the license for Star Trek after Playmates dropped it in 2000, will continue to carry the license for Star Trek items from the previous TV and film series.

Playmates is capable of getting Star Trek toys back to major retail stores which is very important if Star Trek is going to labeled as "cool again" by both fans and the general movie-going public. Playmates is one of the largest toy companies with distribution at all the major retailers such as Target, Wal-mart, Toys R Us, K-Mart, and Kaybee Toys. They made the toys for the recent King Kong movie and currently hold license for Teenage Mutant Ninga Turtles and Disney Princesses. They also manufacture the popular line of "Elite Force" military action figures and toys.

The Kirks from Playmates w/ more coming for the new "Star Trek"

Playmates long history with Trek
Playmates held the Star Trek license for much of the 90s and made toys from every Star Trek television show and film (except 2001’s Enterprise and 2002’s Nemesis when the license had transferred to Art Asylum/Diamond Select). Fan favorites include the Enterprise D bridge and Engineering playsets, prop toys like Dr. McCoy’s Medical Kit, Enterprise ship models and of course action figures. Over the decade Playmates released almost 700 different Star Trek figures of various sizes, including 4.5", 6", 7", 9" and 12" versions. Unlike the Star Wars figures from Hasbro, Playmates figures offered many more variations for each character.

Playmates TNG Tricorder and Enterprise D playest

Playmates Toys were probably at their best during the days of First Contact and Insurrection with an amazing variety of items. For First Contact they offered eleven smaller action figures, five 9" figures, phaser and communicator toys, plus models of the Enterprise-E, Zephram Cochrane’s Phoenix, and the Borg Sphere. With Insurrection Playmates offered a similar number of figures and toys plus a new Enterprise-E with Captain’s yacht.

Star Trek Insurrection Enterprise w/ Captains Yacht

Playmates Star Trek toys continue to be popular to this day, including a number websites dedicated to collectors (such as PlayTrek and TrekToy). Some rare toys are very highly valued . For example The "Redemption" Data (which was a JC Penny’s exclusive limited to 7,000) and the limited Tapestries Picard, Tasha Yar, and Reginald Barclay action figures (all limited to 1,701 each) are worth hundreds of dollars at auctions.

These rare figures will run over $400 each on Ebay

Diamond Select still with Star Trek
The new license for Playmates is limited to just the new Star Trek movie. This means that Diamond Select Toys will still continue with its line covering all other aspects of the Trek franchise (TOS-ENT + 10 previous films). In the last year DST has released a popular line of retro Mego versions and Star Trek II The Wrath of Khan action figures and will be releasing more Kirk, Sisko, and Picard era action figures, Minimates, starship toys, and role playing items this year. DST is also expected to announce additional new (non movie-related) Trek items at Toy Fair.

However, Diamond Select is a comany that best serves a niche clientèle of collectors. For Star Trek to be ‘big’ again it needs to be big with adults and kids. The deal with Playmates, along with the recently announced deal with Corgi International/Master Replicas, shows that the new Star Trek movie will be covered for all ages and all price ranges. Kids will have low-priced toys to play with and collectors will have high-end items to keep behind glass. But it is the Playmates license that signals that "Star Trek" may be on its way to being fun again!

Playmates, Paramount and CBS would not make any comment for this article. will continue to report on developments in Star Trek merchandising.

Playmates commercials and fan videos

VOTE: Do you have Playmates?
So how many Playmates do you have (or did you have). Vote in our latest poll (right sidebar).


1. CmdrR - January 27, 2008

I want some!

Wooo-hoo! I’m 8 again!

2. NCC-73515 - January 27, 2008

I hope that they will also be available in Europe…

3. Chad N. - January 27, 2008

I hope that the new Playmates will have the detail that Art Asylum / Diamond Select has to their products. Compare the Art Asylum Enterprise-E to the Playmates “Insurrection” version… worlds apart.

4. Jared - January 27, 2008

I still remember xmas morning getting that first wave of TNG figure’s! my mom had hid the box and then when all the presents were gone she brought it out this big box full of them! And then a year later the TOS box set….although I can see the argument for Art Asylum type figs, I think playmates is great takes me back!

5. alexander - January 27, 2008

playmates was awesome with thei trek stuff, I have a billion figures, a bunch of phasers, battle damaged Enterpise-d from generations (along with klingon BOP and enterpise-b) the med tricorder and main engineering set (I was around 6 when TNG ended – i LOVED that show – and still do! I hope to God they do a remaster like TOS) always wanted the bridge set as a kid, but it was hard to find according to my parents – I bet they just didnt want to spend the money

6. trekkie1701D (Brian) - January 27, 2008

Cool. Overall Playmates did a good job, they lacked in some areas, but they did a good job releasing a variety of Trek stuff and of decent quality. Hopefully the prop toys will be a little more accurate than last time though.

7. SilverExpress57 - January 27, 2008

We all know that Art Asylum’s Star Trek line is much more detailed than PlayMates’ ever was. Does this mean PlayMates will step up their game to match Art Asylum’s quality? Or will we be getting more cartoonish firgures and Ship’s that aren’t accurate?

Don’t get me wrong, PlayMates was in full gear when I was young and getting into TNG. I have a ton of their ST toys. But after seeing what Art Asylum has produced, I can’t look at PM the same way again.

I’m glad at least that AS will still be able to produce stuff from all the previous ST’s though.

8. Anthony Pascale - January 27, 2008

As I am sure John could elaborate on much more eloquently…people should bear in mind that DST could never ever make enough and get distribution enough for a truly mass market (and most importantly) ‘kid friendly’ toy campaign. If you want ‘replica quality’ you will have stuff from Master Replicas. If you want ‘toys’ for kids to actually play with you will have Playmates.

and if you love DST they will still make trek stuff…just not for the movie

9. I AM THX-1138 - January 27, 2008

I would like to take this opportunity to pat myself on the back as I posted this rumor on Friday, although I can’t remember what thread. It was brought up on a different web-site that Playmates had accidently and prematurely announced their involvement in the movie. I saw it for a moment on Playmates website, then they pulled it. Self-congratulatory BS finished.

I have to concur with the sentiment that hopefullybPlaymates will bring more to the table as far as details are concerned. Their previous efforts were too “toy-like”. I like the DST AA stuff because I can display it. Corgi’s stuff to me just isn’t as good as DST AA, and Playmates was behind them all.

Fingers Crossed.

10. Dennis Bailey - January 27, 2008

Pictures of prototypes always leak out of ToyFair…

11. devolution - January 27, 2008

yikes. i stopped by the playmates website to see the quality of the toys they offer and they look to be about the same as they were when i was a kid and TNG figures were everywhere. i love the idea of ‘star trek’ products being readily available (and likely more affordable), but i hope this doesn’t mean we are going to see a shift away from the realism and quality that later manufacturers have provided.

12. steve623 - January 27, 2008

“Pictures of prototypes always leak out of ToyFair…”

Only if the toys are displayed at Toy Fair to have pictures taken of them. But I’m sure Dennis knows more about Toy Fair than anybody else here too ;-)

13. section9 - January 27, 2008

What! No Agony Booth?


14. John Tenuto - January 27, 2008



One of the themes of Star Trek collectibles is their variety. There are $4 Johnny Lightning ships and $2000 MasterReplica versions. Yet, Star Trek has been very lacking in getting the youth friendly toys to retail stores. This is a very important aspect of making Star Trek popular again, bringing youths to the movies or television shows.

In the 1970s, Star Trek toys were for the children, especially MEGO. Somewhere in the 1990s and 2000s, as fans aged, Paramount didn\’t merchandise to the younger groups.

There is no doubt that DST toys are great, I have them all. I can tell you though kids do not play with them. Those action figures are not toys, not at nearly $20 each.\’s Youth Correspondent mentioned this with a recent article. Our five year old son Nicky won\’t touch the DST figures, yet he enjoys the Playmates very much.

It seems to me that we have the best of both worlds. DST continues with their Star Trek toys, and most importantly, Playmates Toys has retail versions of the characters. Those retail versions will sell more and advertise the film more. Also, don\’t be too hard on Playmates Toys. Compare Star Wars toys from Hasbro ten years ago with today. The technology has improved, and so will the toys.

15. ~~TARA~~ - January 27, 2008

I had that tricorder! I remember wearing black sweat pants and a red sweat shirt taking that tricorder and a phaser I had on my own away missions in my backyard.

16. Dennis Bailey - January 27, 2008

#12: “But I’m sure Dennis knows more about Toy Fair than anybody else here too ”

Don’t feel badly – you probably know *something* about…well, something.


17. Alex Prewitt - January 27, 2008

It’s too bad Playmates is getting the new movie license. I don’t hold much hope that their quality will be anywhere near AA/DST.

18. NCC-73515 - January 27, 2008

The beginning of my collection was the 1701-D I got in 1992 for Christmas. Then I bought a TNG Type 2 Phaser and a TNG Tricorder.
Some years after that I got the Voyager – again for Christmas.
Years after that I got the TNG Type 1 Phaser from a friend and two Mini-Playsets (1701-D and Klingon be’rel) on my birthday.
And then I used eBay to get two TOS Phasers, a TOS Communicator, a ST1/2 Phaser, a ST5/6 Phaser, a ST9 Phaser, a TOS Tricorder and a TMP Communicator.
All these toys are from Playmates, and I am happy with them. My newest additions to this collection are the Art Asylum / Diamond Select TOS Phaser, TOS 1701, Nemesis 1701-E, and the STTE TOS Communicator from Las Vegas.

I live in Germany and the TNG toys used to be quite popular here in the 90s. You could buy them in any toystore. But nowadays Trek merchandise seems to be available in special stores only, which are located in only a few cities.
So I hope that I will find the STXI toys in the nearest store, which is 10 minutes away ;)

19. Sean4000 - January 27, 2008

I have EVERY one of the toys on this page except the ultra rare ones. The transporter toy is a bad ass little play thing.

20. Joel - January 27, 2008

This is the best news since they announced the film. I have just been taken back to my childhood. To see Star Trek toys back in all stores, made by Playmates for the new movie will be an experience.

21. Bink - January 27, 2008

Speaking of Star Trek Toys, here’s a version I spent the last two years designing:
A toy that actually works!

22. S. John Ross - January 27, 2008

Cool. I don’t collect (I rip things out of the box and PLAY), so I’ll be looking forward to seeing what they do this time around :)

23. Kelly - January 27, 2008

#18 – I bought one of my favorite Star Trek figures back in 1997 in Germany, a Deanna Troi. I remember when I was there how crazy it was that I saw Star Trek everywhere! We even went into a store that sold tons of the episodes on tape, lo they looked bootleg though.

24. T2 - January 27, 2008

Best news I’ve heard all day. I’ll never forget growing up watching TNG and always being surprised with a new figure here and there. Christmas, Easter, Birthdays, etc…every occasion it’s what people got me. Now I only wish I had kept some sealed instead of opened. (Especially the “Tapestry” Picard, “Yesterday’s Enterprise” Yar, and “Projections” Barclay.) I can’t wait to see what they do next.

25. Harry Ballz - January 27, 2008

#9 I AM THX-1138 “I would like to take this opportunity to pat myself on the back”

Hmmmm………I could say a number of things right now, but since you’re a good friend let’s just leave it at……..

self-praise is no recommendation!

As Al Pacino would say, HOOOOO HAAAAA!! :)

26. Smitty - January 27, 2008


If/when they do I hope they take more care when making them. My only real complaint was when they sat they were always in the lotus position!

Legs bend straight at the waist please!


27. GARY NEUMANN - January 27, 2008

Oh god NO

28. I AM THX-1138 - January 27, 2008

I saw that on youtube earlier today. Nice work.

I just went onto Playmates website. I gotta say, I’m not that impressed with the quality of what they currently have. Back in the day, I had the TNG phasers and tricorder and was pretty happy with them. Although the small TNG hand phaser was way too big. The ships just didn’t do it for me. I’m a decent modeler, so I went that route but as I got older I came to appreciate DST AA for the detail and in the case of the TOS Enterprise, some always-on lighting. I never have done the lighting thing.

I still am keeping my fingers crossed that the Playmates quality will be good or that Master Replicas aren’t going to try price these for doctors and lawyers only.

Who will be producing the models for assembly? Maybe I’ll have to go back to my old ways.

29. AnnoyedFan - January 27, 2008

I have all of the ships, every single one even the rare

30. trekkie1701D (Brian) - January 27, 2008

Sooo, if the figures are leaked @ toyfair, does that mean we get to see UNIFORMS?!?

31. elmachocombo - January 27, 2008

The one toy I always wanted was the transporter. They should make TMP version “what made it back didn’t live long” scene. Imagine the packaging on that sweet toy. “Includes exclusive Weeping Rand and Mutilated Ambassador action figures. Push the button to hear him SREEEEEEAM!” Oh, yeah. They HAVE to make a Checkov with Seti Alpha 6 ear creature too. Including a jar of ear goo. “Capteen, zey put creatures in our ears.” Oh, JOY! Can’t wait for the new toys.

32. Elrond L. - January 27, 2008

This is really great news, for all the reasons listed above. It’s critical to reach kids and get Trek movie toys to where their parents are shopping.

What a kick to see pictures of the E-D bridge playset and tricorder, which I still have! The only bad part is feeling old when I hear how everyone was 7 when they got their first TNG figures. :-) I was in my 20s (I swear I had a girlfriend too).

33. Will.I.Am - January 27, 2008

Now I can act like an 8 year old again!

34. Anthony Pascale - January 27, 2008

I think it is a safe bet that most of us here fell in love with trek when we were kids or young adults. For Trek to be big again it has to again capture the imagination of the youth. In the last decade Trek has become more and more of a niche, catering to an older and older crowd.

Problem with that….the crowd are eventually going to all die

35. StarTrekRocker - January 27, 2008

Playmates had a surprising amount of good durable quality products! I welcome them back! And I agree with #19, that Transporter was way cool!

36. Buckaroohawk - January 27, 2008

I have a number of the Playmates Trek action figures, but I was more interested in the equipment props (phasers, tricorders, etc.) and the toy starships. Many of them are still on display in my den, though they’ve become a tad dusty…

My fondest memory of the Playmates Trek action figures comes from a display a freind had in his apartment many years ago. He had several of the original TNG action figures that were made by Galoob (and were truly gawd-awful, by the way) in a semi-circle, kneeling in humble submission before a Playmates TNG Worf figure. A truly hilarious diorama, and the memory of it still makes me smile to this day.

37. Wes - January 27, 2008

Finally! Home again! I was 5 when the first slew of TNG figures came out, and I was so excited! Since, the only thing I could get up to that point was first season TNG galoob figures on discount at the toy stores, because they were a few years old. I was so excited to get that Bridge set in Christmas 1993! My grandma also bought me the Klingon V’ORCHA and the Warbird, Enterprise-D and the Transporter, she must have spent a fortune! My parents and friends bought me the action figures through the years, and I always kept them in good shape and with all the acc. I also bought 2 of each figure (when they were on discount!) because I wanted to open one and have the cover art. I am 19 now and I still buy all the playmates stuff, when I find it! I have almost 1000 (maybe over!) Playmates Items, all the ships, figures, role playing, and playsets. The great thing is, is that you could actually find them and afford them, unlike the diamond select and art asylum ones (except when Enterprise was cancelled, they ended up in the discount bins for 2 bucks!) I think that the retailers are afraid of Trek merchandise because they have been screwed over so many times with the failure of the art asylum ones, which were in all of my local KB toy stores, and the over saturation of the playmates stuff in the late 1990’s that no one wanted, all of it ended up in the 3 for $10 pile! So, lets hope for 2 things, first, no over saturation again, and lets hope that these figures are on the same scale as the old ones, so, you can have adventures with all the figures! (LOL!)

38. star trackie - January 27, 2008

Man, playmates had the absolute worst figure sculpts…from a collecting perspective anyway, the likeness of the characters really sucked. I guess it is good to have toys that look like toys for kids to really get into it. But it is very cool when a toy company like AA can put out a phaser that is so good it is used in the actual TV production and offer figures with scultps created by laser scans of the actor’s face.

I sure hate to see a step backwards to the clunky-non accurate prop/figure/ship reproductions that PLaymates offered. But that’s the collector in me speaking…maybe some kids will actually play with the new stuff instead of “collecting” them and never opening the box.

39. Will.I.Am - January 27, 2008

Don’t forget the ST2 Anamatronic Kirk Head. Just pull the string and hear the digitally remastered “KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!”

40. elmachocombo - January 27, 2008

With the echo, of course. That would be awesome.

41. elmachocombo - January 27, 2008

And the scab faced Khan clenching his fist! Oh, I hope they do branch out and not stick to the new film exclusively.

42. Alex - January 27, 2008

This is awsome news! I have them all, even the super-rare 1701-Picard, tasha Yar and Reg Barclay (I got them back in the day for $300 from ebay). Although no competition to the AA-Toys in detail, they remain my favorites to this day. I was never able to warm up with the AA figures, altough some of them (mostly the early ones, TOS, Nemesis and Enterprise) are on display in my living room. I remember having a wonderful time trying to get them all from ebay or in shops (does anyone remember the time when mainstream retailers actually had Star Trek toys on display?).

My initial skepticism turned into confidence with the trailer and into pure hype with this news. Let’s see what’s next. :-)

(Oh, and if they are going to anounce that the Star Trek Micro Machines are going to be ressurrected, too, I might actually get a heart attack…)

43. The Vulcanista - January 27, 2008

Anthony’s got a new poll up. So far, four people have no Playmate ST toys.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

44. I AM THX-1138 - January 27, 2008

That’s what I was getting at. Good for the kids-bad for me. I take my stuff out of the box and display it. Boxes are for moving and I’m not selling any of my stuff. My ex-wife trashed all my old stuff, so I aint lettin’ go.

“older crowd” ” are eventually going to all die ”

Not me! Never!!

45. Leonel - January 27, 2008

And the good news just keeps on coming.. :-)

46. Xai - January 27, 2008

Off-topic, my apologies..

Where’s everyone else from? We are thinking about getting together regionally to view some movie called Star Trek in a few months.

Ok, our updated census shows

Xai, western Iowa,
JimJ, eastern Nebraska,
Vulcanista, Atlanta, GA
Lord Garth, Chicago, IL
THX-1138, eastern Washington
Commodore Redshirt, Seattle, WA

Where’s everyone else from? We are thinking about getting together regionally to view some movie called Star Trek in a few months.

47. Will.I.Am - January 27, 2008

I’ve got a ton of ST Micro Machines, two hand sized metal ships (1701 A and D (w/separating parts)) so if they do ressurect MM, I’m going to have a heart attack as well.

48. Ralph - January 27, 2008

#21 Too bad opening the grill can not be the answer mode.

49. Harry Ballz - January 27, 2008

#46 “Where’s everyone else from?”

Harry Ballz, Toronto, Ontario

50. Xai - January 27, 2008

Thanks Harry..

Where’s everyone else from? We are thinking about getting together regionally to view some movie called Star Trek in a few months.

51. Ralph - January 27, 2008

The best use of Star Trek figures.

My ex-wife could not stand anything Star Trek. She felt threatened by it. Go figure.

52. Rick Sternbach - January 27, 2008

Just a little amusing historical note; I seem to recall one of the Playmates guys telling me, when we were doing TNG, was that they’d wait for AMT/Ertl to do their injection-molded ship model kits and -then- they’d work off of them to get the basic shapes and details. Of course, they always had the studio models and my blueprints to study, but having a model in hand made the process somehow easier. One one or two occasions, Playmates had to dive into a design first, without benefit of a kit to borrow from, and they did fine. These days, I assume that instead of 3-D mechanical pantographs to manually run over a master part, it’s all rapid prototyping from CG files. Should be fun.

A Modicum of Experience in Starship Design

53. Anthony Pascale - January 27, 2008

xai, harry, etc
I appreciate your attempts to hook up and all, but lets stay on topic. We are opening a new community section with forums soon. until then use this:

54. Jabob Slatter - January 27, 2008

It’s good to know there will be some version of the Enterprise. I bought all of the Playmates ships and props, but I’ve never been an action figure fellow. I liked the ships quite a bit, having never seen anything better.

A few years ago I gave all my ST toys to my godson. I now only have the Wrath of Khan Enterprise from Diamond/Art Asylum, because the Enterprise A is my favorite Enterprise. I won’t give that one away.

Hey, Rick Sternbach! How ya doing? Your designs are awesome!

55. Steve Hill - January 27, 2008

I hope the figures are 5 inches like the old ones. I wish Playmates could go back and make the 5 inch figures of the Star Trek Enterprise TV show crew.

56. The Vulcanista - January 27, 2008

LOL, you Toy Boys have been at it this evening!

I’ve never understood the collecting bug, but what the hey? ROCK ON!

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

57. Tanner Waterbury - January 27, 2008

FINALLY HIGH QUALITY PLASTIC IS COMING BACK!!! Boy am i Hyped about this. And Hiya there Mr. Sternbach!!!

58. Gibnerd - January 27, 2008

click on my name & check the blog about my sci-fi toys museum, got a few shots from my small (but growing) collection of Playmates Trek! Loving the idea of new movie figures. I know what everyone can get me for x-mas this year!!!! TREK FIGURES!!!!!!!!!

59. Fanboy - January 27, 2008

Glad to hear they’re planning on widely available toy merchandizing for the new movie. Hopefully Playmates can step up to the plate. From what I recall, they had a fairly shoddy track record in the past–including retail availability. Remember their figures for Generations? They didn’t even match the costumes used in the film! And there prop reproductions seemed nice at the time, but the current Diamond Select toys totally blow them away. Heck, even the Mego figures (which I grew up with) were arguably superior to their 12″ series. Lets hope Playmates can get their act together this time and produce some cutting edge product with good likenesses, decent articulation, and use actual fabrics .

60. the king in shreds and tatters - January 27, 2008

dude, where’s our Trek Lego?

61. elmachocombo - January 27, 2008

Vulcanista. In all fairness, I’ve known a few ladies who were very much into toys :)

62. elmachocombo - January 27, 2008

Did they ever make a photon torpedo with Spock’s lifeless corpse inside? I have a vague feeling I saw that somewhere once. Wait, nevermind, that was the big egg with Mork inside. Beeest toy eeeveeer! Nanoo Nanoo. Nite all.

63. Will.I.Am - January 27, 2008

My girldfreind loves Trek. :)
I’m taking her to see it when it comes out. ;)

64. Harry Ballz - January 27, 2008

Oh, great…when I first saw the headline for this thread I thought the producers were shooting a scene at the Playboy Mansion!

Major letdown on line one! :)

65. The Vulcanista - January 27, 2008


Nope. *Not* going there. Nunh-UNH!

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

66. elmachocombo - January 27, 2008

Naughty Vulcan.
And, goodnight.

67. Levois - January 27, 2008

They should do model kits again. I used to get the model kits when they were available only to never construct the models. I was too lazy to paint. Even if I had constructed the model and I could’ve painted it later.

68. The Vulcanista - January 27, 2008


LOL! Check the site for Bunny ears beforehand next time.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

69. Skippy 2k - January 27, 2008

#64. Wasn’t my first thought but now i’m let down too… ;-) I still have a bunch of playmates stuff (wen’t with the 100+ option) but most is packed away. I’ve collected some of the Art Asylum/DST stuff which while playmates made much more variants AA’s are much more detailed. I pretty much just get the AA/DST ships now though, can’t wait for the new Ent!

70. elmachocombo - January 27, 2008

All right! Mrs. Macho is putting little Machita to bed, so I’m gonna stay up a lil’ longer. I just want to say how much fun it’s been reading these posts the past couple of months. I know we all get a bit snarky from time to time, but really, we’re all here for the same reason. My wife is pretty “Meh,” about the whole thing, so you guys and Vulcanistas have been the main outlet for all this high octane nerd DNA flowing through my veins. For that I apologize :) Now, adding toys to the mix! It’s almost more than I can stand. I am just so jazzed about this movie it’s stupid. I’m gonna shut up now (1995 Playmates TMP Spock #000742 in hand) and let you guys continue to put a big ass smile on my face. Have a great week y’all. Yeeeeeehaaaaaaw!

71. SilverExpress57 - January 27, 2008

I can agree. That one of the major aspects of bringing Star Trek back is to capture the minds of today’s youth. Much as it did with yesterday’s youth, being us.

PlayMates is probably the best way to go as far as this is concerned. I guess I should rephrase my concern. Art Asylum blew PlayMates Star Trek line out of the water as far as quality is concerned. But as someone pointed out, they are for the more mature collector and are not really meant to be played with and banged around. So, yeah, PlayMates should make a line for the children. BUT, what my concern is, is that PlayMates sounds like it will be the EXCLUSIVE company making STXI toys. I would like to see it shared with Art Asylum.

I know that we will probably see models of the new ENT out there, but I could never devote enough attention to putting a model together. So, AA’s Starship Legends was perfect for me.

I just don’t want the only decent sized 1701-Redux that I can get my hands on to be a PlayMates one. Doesn’t anyone remember how poor their first ENT-E was? Or their version of the original 1701?

72. Can't Wait for X-Mas 2008 - January 27, 2008

Im glad to hear that Diamond Select/Art Asylum will still be making Star Trek toys. There selection and detail just blows away the playmate toys from the 90’s. Not to say I don’t like them. I still have my TNG and DS9 figures back home in my parents house. And had great fun with them when I was growing up. Hopefully Playmates will get the detail right on the movie figures.
And #59, the reason the Generation figures look all wrong is the fact that the movie figures had the new uniforms that were going to be in the movie. The toys went into production before Rick Berman decided to change them to the DS9 uniforms. Movie toys have to produced months in at advice or even a year at least depended on how detailed the toy will be in order to hit its street date.

73. Can't Wait for X-Mas 2008 - January 27, 2008

#71 Yeah I remember the playmate Ent-E, it suffered from the same issue with the Generation figures. A rushed production schedule. The Ent-E looked like the first sketchs of the ship that were done. Im hoping that the new Entprise by Playmates will look right and have detail that can go toe to toe with the Diamond Select/Art Asylum Enterprises.

74. John Trumbull - January 27, 2008

Don’t know if this is good news or not. I loved the Playmates figures back in the day, but since then the Art Asylum/Diamond Select figures have made them look not so hot by comparisson. When AA first came out with their TOS figures, the likenesses were SO good that I wondered if the AA sculptors actually grabbed a time machine to get 3D laser scans of Shatner, Nimoy & co. I still have my Playmates figures, but they’ve been boxed up ever since my last move (nearly 5 years ago), while my Art Asylum figures are proudly displayed on my bookshelf.

Let’s hope the Playmates sculptors step up their game. I personally don’t have too much interest in the 4-5″ scale figures anymore.

75. Fleet Captain Kor'Tar - January 27, 2008

I am saving my spare cash now! Here I come Christmas of 2008 , see you then at Target or Wal-Mart or Toys R Us . I have a feeling I’m gonna need some more shelf space LOL!

76. Laserlover2254 - January 27, 2008

Good stuff, I got a Cage-era Hand Laser made by them, which I’m still enjoying today.

77. RedStatesRule - January 27, 2008

Good memories.

I remember that commercial with Q and the transporter — I think I still own that by the way. My action figures ended up in the attic when I was about 10 but man I had some good times with those guys.

I’d always build sets out of paper and cardboard and use those. I had the TNG bridge pictured but it was just too much freaking work to put together.

Definitely — good memories.

78. Tanner Waterbury - January 27, 2008

@ 71

Well the Enterprise E WAS pretty bad, but i gotta disagree with you on the TOS Enterprise, as a matter of fact, i have one right above my monitor here and let me tell you, i think its still great. I have the AA ones too, but the thing that im dissapointed in with them is , their damn Bussard collectors are transparent, and the little fans are painted on, whilst the Playmates version has opaque bussards and the fans are carved in to make it look more realistic. Now if only the bussard changed colors though. Actually speaking of that, does anyone know where i might find some LED lgihts that can rotate around into a circle for my AA TOS ship i am editing?

79. John Tenuto - January 28, 2008

It’s all asethetics, isn’t it? The Enterprise D from Playmates Toys is a favorite of ours. The sound effects are thrilling to this day, and it is was meant to be an affordable toy. The DST ships, again we have them all and they are great, are more fragile yet more detailed. They are not meant to be played with like the Playmates Toys ships.

It was great that the Generations toys were based on preproduction sketches. The entire line of characters were released for Generations in costumes that were not used in the film. It was like getting deleted scenes before there were DVDs. Then, Playmates Toys went back and provided fans the characters as they appeared in the film.

80. Spock with a crowbar - January 28, 2008

I’m so excited! I grew up with these in the 90’s. I hope they stick to the 5″ scale. I want them to match the many ST Playmates figures on my shelf.

Best ones ever: The Original Series Bridge Crew collectors set! No way was I going to keep them in the box! I’m 27 and I still say you gotta take ’em out and play with ’em or they’re worth nothing.

81. intrepid - January 28, 2008

wow, when I saw the title of this thread I had a completely different idea of what was going on… toys, huh?

82. Fanboy - January 28, 2008

#72 & #79
That’s exactly why I hope Playmates can get their act together this time. If it takes over a year for them to get accurate figures to market, then we’re already screwed! And no, I don’t think it’s cool to have alternate-design costumes as the only ones available. I think it took them a whole extra year after the release to get then accurate Generations figures out.

Another thing I couldn’t stand about playmates was they way they frequently included rips & tears permanently molded into the figures costumes. Maybe it’s just me, but I’d like to display figures that appear relatively normal, not all roughed up as if during a fight sequence. If they want to sell that alternate beat-up figures that’s fine, but as I recall there were some characters (Riker & Kirk come to mind) that were almost non-existant in their normal uniforms, but I could find shelves filled with them in (non-selling) distressed form. That’s when I first gave up even considering buying them anymore.

83. CommonSense - January 28, 2008

We Need the BRIDGE!!!

84. Jace - January 28, 2008

which enterprise is pictured here?

I have not seen this image before.

85. T'Lera - January 28, 2008

Sounds cool…we’ll have to wait and see. Even though it’s odd-numbered, I’m sure it’ll do well so their toys can sell to the kids being dragged by parents who remember Star Trek.

86. Mary Jane - January 28, 2008

Will they also cast “playmates” as female crew members? That would also conform to TOS. (~_^)

87. Ampris - January 28, 2008

All right! This is so cool; the news about the new high-end model toys was nifty and all, but I need toys that can can be bought at KB Toys and actually played with! :P

I actually feel a little left out here. TNG was well before my time, so I didn’t grow up buying or playing with the toys at all. (I do remember being excited as heck for each new Attack of the Clones figure, though. ) The only Trek toys I have currently are the TNG Troi and Picard I got last year as a present, a 10″ Dr. McCoy from eBay (but whose tag said he came from the Hallmark Store), and a Lego mini-figure that I Sharpied sideburns and eyebrows onto because *somebody* had to fly the homemade Bird of Prey. It’ll be nice to be able to buy Trek toys just as easily as the Star Wars figures for once- can’t wait for these to hit the shelves!

88. John, Mary Jo, and Nicky Tenuto - January 28, 2008


With due respect, I think the main notion here is that Playmates Toys is a toy company, not a collectible company. I never claimed you needed to like the toys, I was stating my family’s experience. The Generations costume change was not something Playmates Toys could predict. It is great fun now to notice a “what could have been” design of the movie with the Generations toys and action figures.

The Playmates Toys Star Trek items are not meant to be displayed. They are meant for play. The comparisons of Playmates Toys from a decade ago to DST’s modern capabilities, or their prices, is like comparing Johnny Lightning ships to MasterReplicas. I like DST very much, I have all their action figures, including variations and ships. They are not for the younger fans, though. The action figures are meant for display, they are too heavy for the younger fans to hold. The ships, while detailed, are not meant for play either. That is the reason for toys, not for us older fans who like to collect, yet for younger fans to help Star Trek.

Here is a fact that we as fans must deal with, Star Trek isn’t something retail stores want now. Yet, retail stores are very important to helping Star Trek. Playmates Toys has the power that DST does not to get these toys to the audience to help the film.

89. NCC-73515 - January 28, 2008

to 84. Jace:
Koerner again.

So where’s the difference between the licenses? PM and Corgi may both sell toys for STXI?

90. John, Mary Jo, and Nicky Tenuto - January 28, 2008


Hello Jace,

This is the Gabriel Kroener fan version of the Enterprise.

Tony wrote about this with his previous article

91. miguel - January 28, 2008

It’s about time.

Looks like star trek is about to go mainstream again.

Besides, the art asylum figures kept breaking. These will actually be good for kids to play with, which means new little fans!

Also, they might make a new line of TNG, DS9 and VOY toys. We’re all 8 again!

92. Paul Fitz - January 28, 2008

I had co many trek figures, and I still have them! They were never in the packaging for long. So their worth is only sentemental. I also have the Tricorder pictured above, i spent hours “scanning” everything. I also have the transporter in my attic.
I’m delighted Playmates might get the contract again. Would love to get a glimpse of their proposed designs.

Anthony thanks again for a cool post.

93. Kirk, James T. - January 28, 2008

I think it would have been even better to have DST as well as Playmates carry the new Movie license – they don’t deal with the same customer base – Playmates is for Kids where as DST target the older collectors market who want cool replica figures and ships – i think the’ve made an error in not awarding DST with the license to make movie merch as well as Playmates.

I don’t know yet if I’ll get any of the new movie toys but i doubt Star Trek will become “cool for kids” just because playmates hold the license… we’ll see.

I think PotC had it done very well with toys – they had NECA produce movie accurate figures of collectors and Zizzle produce movie toys for kids

94. doubleofive - January 28, 2008

I used to have all of the Galoob TNG figures and the shuttle when I was really young. Later in life, I got the Playmates TOS bridge crew set and few other of that era. I also had the Playmates TOS phaser, TOS tricorder, TNG phaser, and TNG combadge. For some reason I sold them all several years ago.

A couple of years ago, one of the professors at the college I worked at saw my Johnny Lightning ships on my desk and said he had some Star Trek stuff he wanted to get rid of. So I went to his house after work and he showed me his stash. Three or four plastic tubs full of books, models, games, and Playmates figures. He had the TOS phaser I was really craving, so we started talking price. I was willing to pay $20 for the phaser alone, but I about fell down when he offered everything to me for $20.

I bought 80+ figures, 30 still on their cards (including the entire Generations set), plus anything else I could want for $20.

I cataloged them all and bagged them up, and they sit in my parent’s basement, waiting for room to open up in my house for nerd-dom. I hope the new figures are to scale with them so they all can hang out.

95. doubleofive - January 28, 2008

Oh, and I used to have the First Contact Ent-E. If I remember correctly, doesn’t it have a cloaking device sound? That always threw me off as a kid; if they had a cloaking device, why didn’t they use it?

96. British Naval Dude - January 28, 2008

Auch! I didn’t realize that the playmates could make toys? Could I get one made by Miss March 1997???

I dunna ever had any ST toys, maybe a model or two and a plastic stick’ums sort of thing- putting wee strips of plastic on a cardboard picture… but I did have me a Flash Gordon action figure… silver boots and all…

What be the best phaser to get? arrrrr

97. bono luthor - January 28, 2008

I used to love the playmates action figures, even though I was about 10 years too old for them!

I remember when I got Old McCoy, Relic Scotty, Unification Spock and Generations Kirk together on the Ent D bridge with the Next Gen gang.

Better than anything Berman came up with! LOL.

Strangely enough my series one Wrath Of Kahn figures arrived today.

I have Admiral Kirk (double cross) helping me (ahem) with my work at my desk this afternoon…

98. @@driver - January 28, 2008

Well I think this is great news. I’d take the old Playmates figures over the newer, more collectible and realistic figures anyday! I miss seeing the Star Trek section next to the Star Wars section in the toy aisle. This is great news, along with the new Indiana Jones figure line too….

99. The Vulcanista - January 28, 2008

#96 ” and a plastic stick’ums sort of thing- putting wee strips of plastic on a cardboard picture…”

Color Forms maybe? I used to have those as a kid.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

100. John, Mary Jo, and Nicky Tenuto - January 28, 2008


I don’t think I claimed in the article or comments that Playmates Toys is a panacea for Star Trek being “cool again.” I claim that a requirement of it being “cool again” is that the merchandise be available with retail stores. Playmates Toys is a company that has retail store power, yet DST does not.

However, I am not disagreeing with you…I can’t ever disagree with James T. Kirk!

101. last o' the timelords - January 28, 2008

I still love my PM toys for sheer number and variety. PM did some really obscure figs sometimes. Because they’re smaller I am able to display them in diorama type settings for each series. Except for the really rare figs, I have a nearly complete collection.

AA is superlative but too large (and expensive) for me. Also they’re not released in any sort of order that makes sense to me. I am still peeved I never got a normal looking Hoshi Sato for my collection.

102. star trackie - January 28, 2008

#88 “The action figures are meant for display, they are too heavy for the younger fans to hold. ”

I have to disagree with you there. Unless they are toddlers, I’ve never seen a little girl have trouble with Barbi and I recall boys of all ages having one heck of a good time man-handling old school GI Joe with the kung fu grip!

Big is good, for play and display both!

103. bernie - January 28, 2008

I’ll just be glad to see star trek back in the main stream stores. the last time i bought or seen them in stores was the AA enterprise figures and tos figures in kb toys and spencers gifts.

104. Rob - January 28, 2008

Bring on the 9 inchers!!

105. Irish Trekki - January 28, 2008

I’m hoping they bring out the ships again, they kicked ass!!!!!

106. They call me Stasiu - January 28, 2008

A lot of figures on the pegs right now stand at least 6-inches tall. It’d be interesting to see (and predict) if Playmates would be making the ST figures sized to compete, rather than go back to their old scale.

107. Eduardo Cordeiro - January 28, 2008

Of playmates I have the Uss Voyager and a Picard figure with sound.
My Enterprise D with the little figures my dog eated.With the crew inside.
IMHO, Art Asylum beats Playmates in detail, but as someone said here, Playmates produces toys for kids to smash.
But I´m happy that now I´m 25 and can spent my money on Star Trek stuff without having to ask my parents about it.

Live long and prosper from Brasil folks!

108. Captain Hackett - January 28, 2008

Excellent News!

I am looking forward to buying a WHOLE set of Playmates Star Trek stuffs!


109. table10 - January 28, 2008


I’m hoping for a return to the 4.5’s

Mostly because they would blend in and not look to far off removed from the other gazillion playmates figures I have saved up for years

110. Dr. Image - January 28, 2008

I have BOXLOADS of those old damn Playmates figures that I can’t give away. I suppose though, it was inevitable, given their distribution range.
AA/DST’s products are obviously much classier and not embarassing to display. The HMS props based AA classic phaser is even “canon” since it appeared in that ENT episode. (That is, the first release of it with the black handle.)
The more I think about it, I think my Fanboy Level is actually quite higher than FB5… since I collect props…and toys…

111. Scott - January 28, 2008

Just love em”
Too bad they are not doing re-issues as well!

112. John Tenuto - January 28, 2008


Thanks for the reply.

Here is a nice article written by’s youth correspondent James T.


113. jonboc - January 28, 2008

Of course the key ingredient of getting kids to play with Trek toys is giving them a rip-roaring adventure of a movie that MAKES them want to play Trek. Trek needs to be fun again and stimulate the imagination. sadly, Trek hasn’t done that in a very long time.

But a new dawn awaits us…I think we’re in good hands.

114. GO - January 28, 2008

Well, frankly, I think this stinks.

Kids are NOT stupid. I always remember hating it when toy manufacturers treated us as such when I was a kid (fr’instance, toy airplanes being designed with landing gear fixed in the down state, rather than being equipped with retractable landing gear…). And I believe kids today are even smarter.

Sure, it’s important that the toys be made stronger than what Art Asylum’s been making if kids are to get their hands on them, but I, for one, am deeply concerned that Playmates will end up producing terrible plastic blob, playskool-style interpretations of the cool new ships this movie has in store for us.

Art Asylum does NOT deserve this.

115. The Vulcanista - January 28, 2008

#107: “My Enterprise D with the little figures my dog eated.With the crew inside.”

LOL!!!! So *that’s* what ultimately happened to Picard & crew! The giant space canine from Brasilia VI got ’em! What an ignoble end to such an illustrious crew! ;)

Seriously, though, I hope your dog didn’t get *too* sick. It’s amazing what they can eat and still be fine.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

116. Dr. Image - January 28, 2008

Wormhole ahead! It’s …it’s… dark…and brown…and loaded with asteroids!

117. GARY NEUMANN - January 28, 2008


Guys be SERIOUS, I rather have a good looking Trek Figure ala AA than a caricature of my favorite Trek Character, I mean have you seen AA’s Burnt TWOK KHAN? it’s incredible!!!

118. elmachocombo - January 28, 2008

Colorforms and ShrinkyDinks. Memorieees. I hope the figures are a little more detailed than Playmates previous lines, but I sorta like the softened edges of their stuff. Kinda the “anti” McFarlane look. Toys are too darn scary looking these days. The vintage Star Wars stuff found that happy medium between too cute and too detailed. I don’t need to see every sweaty pore on Kirk’s forehead, or have them pre-posed in some contorted kung-fu move. Just gimme good ol’ (standing up straight) crew with relatively peaceful expressions on their faces. If I need to have ’em do kung fu I can always melt the knees with a magnifying glass! Leave a little to the imagination.

119. elmachocombo - January 28, 2008

Don’t get me wrong, tho I like the idea of a kid’s version AND the Crusty the Khan version. Play vs. collectable. Always room for both. Just don’t want the kids playing with the anatomically correct Troi doll. Know what I mean?

120. Edge - January 28, 2008

My kids had most of those.
And my youngest still have the Phase Pistol and Communicator from ENT.
And the Phasers from TNG and ST :TUC And TWOK.

121. John Tenuto - January 28, 2008

Playmates Toys provided more than 4.5″ figures. There were 6″, 9″, 12″ and other sized action figures. Their last Star Trek figures were actually made by Art Asylum, which allowed AA to get the license.

For clarification, AA is not the toy company now. They make the sculpts only, yet couldn’t sustain the toys in the marketplace. DST is the company. Its not that big of a distinction, thought I would mention it though.

With due respect to Playmates Toys, it would be good if they told fans some of their ideas for the feature film toys. Perhaps some of this very reasonable debate could be nullified. I wonder though if this kind of debate, while enjoyable as a fan, is also what scares retailers from Star Trek. We criticize before we know the facts.

122. TomBot2008 - January 28, 2008

Honestly, I had thought Playmates had went out of business… I had always admired their prop toys and ships though, especially the cool sound effects that accompanied many. I once got a Borg Cube on the cheap and ripped out it’s sound F/x for another project… too cool. Frankly, I’m out of collecting from now on, so I let you “kids” pick up the slack. ;-)

123. Warren - January 28, 2008

NOOOOOOOO!! I love my Diamond Select/Art Asylum Trek figures and ships. They are collectors items and they are beautiful. Playmates is gonna make ’em crappy. That said, if they make them like the old TNG ones were then at least they’d bring me back to my childhood.

124. John Tenuto - January 28, 2008

The good news for those who like DST is that there will be plenty of DST action figures and ships. is featuring an article soon with details of the already announced DST toys.

We don’t know the facts about the Playmates Toys line yet. It is surprising that there is criticism of something we fans have no idea about yet. Actually, I guess it isn’t too surprising.

Here is what we know. Star Trek toys must be in retail stores to help the movie. That is a fact. Star Trek toys must be in retail stores to help Star Trek be “cool again” with the generic audiences.

Playmates Toys, not DST, has the power to bring the toys to retail. If it was DST who had the line of Star Trek movie toys, while probably nicely detailed, they would be sold online only in most probability. We do not know what scale or what the aesthetics of the Playmates Toys will be yet. They may surprise or dissapoint. Yet, I think it is a mistake to criticize them without the facts. Let’s see the toys first, huh? They must have done something good with Star Trek to have one the best selling toy licenses of the 1990s.

125. jonboc - January 28, 2008

Making kids interested in Trek is a lot more complicated that putting toys in a peg. Enterprise and Nemesis figures….superb in craftsmanship…sat in the bargain bins for ever. You couldn’t give them away. This was at Toys R Us..larget Toy store in the country. They sat there because no kid was watching Trek and no kid wanted to play Trek.

And by the time Nemesis and Enterprise arrived, the adult collectors weren’t even interested. And these figures and props and bridge playsets were fantastic. So you had excellent quality at huge retail stores….and they couldn’t move the product.

So, I’ll say it again. Getting toys in Wal Mart is not the key to making Trek cool or popular again. The movie itself is going to have to make that happen.

If it doesn’t, it doesn’t matter who is making the toys…AA, Playmates or Kenner…if the movie doesn’t deliver, the movie figures are going to end up in the bargain bin again. If the movie kicks ass and word of mouth spreads… kids will come and the goods will sell themselves, wherever they are.

126. John Tenuto - January 28, 2008


I agree and disagree. Am I a politician?

First, no one here implied that the only thing that could make Star Trek “cool again” is the toys. Please don’t infer that from my article or comments. Most importantly, the film better be good. I agree with your writing about this concern. There needs to be advertising and merchandising with fervor and various styles.

Yet, retail stores and grocery stores are the two best places to advertise a film. They are some of the few places in our society without niche shoppers. Every demographic shops at these locations. A Quinto Spock standee in a grocery store is worth a thousand niche advertisements. Playmates Toys on the shelves of stores this Thanksgiving, next to the Star Wars and Transformers, the Spiderman and Pirates, says clearly that this film is a big film, something very different than previous Star Trek films. The perception of the toys merely being there is very important.

Don’t underestimate the power of nostalgia either. Our society is always 20 years nostalgic which is some of the reason for Transformer’s success. 20 years is perfect for nostalgia because the youth from then are the adults from now. The 1970s was about the 1950s (Happy Days, Grease), the 1980s was about the 1960s (Star Trek films, Vietnam movies), the 1990s was about the 1970s (That 70s Show, Star Wars), and the 2000s is about the 1980s, which was about the 1960s (Star Trek films about the TV show of the 1960s).

Parents going into stores like Toys R Us who notice Star Trek toys might be inclined to buy them for nostalgia and to play with their children what they played with as kids. Yet, many casual fans do not know about the DST line. Parents who don’t niche shop at online stores like AFX are not aware there are great DST toys for Star Trek. Plus, the DST items are not meant for play, really. The toy ships fragility is one example of this. They are meant for display. This is also a challenge to parents buying Star Trek toys.

There needs to be very many strategies to help Star Trek become as big as it used to be with generic audiences. It does begin with a great film. It also begins with marketing to the next generation of fans, something Star Wars does excellently and Star Trek has not for a decade.

As I wrote, toys are not a panacea. They however a damn good asprin.

127. QcJoe - January 28, 2008

I was kinda hopeing Playmates was getting the whole license. I havent been to happy with the sculpts of the company that has them now.

128. Eduardo Cordeiro - January 28, 2008

#115. Everything turned alright for my dog.Eventually it came out….lol.
He was just a puppy at the time, and I forgot my bedroom door open….
What was interesting is that of all the Trek stuff i had there, he choosed the Ent-D!

I believe reverting the polarity of the warp field didn´t work that time…..

ps. everyone forgive me for my bad english, I´m just trying to comunicate with fellow trekkers around the world..

Live long and prosper…always

129. jonboc - January 28, 2008

#126 “Yet, retail stores and grocery stores are the two best places to advertise a film. They are some of the few places in our society without niche shoppers”.

Very true. Remember when comic books were sold at grocery stores and the corner convenience store and every kid had a stack to read, not collect? Now days, if kids want a comic book they have to go to a “comic book store” to get one. Since mom and dad don’t frequent such places, most of the comic readers are adult collectors and the poor kid who just might enjoy a fun comic book is pushed out of the loop.

I agree, that if this movie is really good, having the toys somewhere convenient, so the kids have easy access, is definately a good thing.

130. Jabob Slatter - January 28, 2008

Eduardo Cordeiro –

You English is fine. You write better than most Americans.

131. DEMODE - January 28, 2008

I love playmates figures. Still have all my old ones.


One thing that drove me nuts was they they never released the figures in the Star trek II: Wrath of Khan uniforms. Kirk, Chekov, Scotty, Saavik were the only ones (not including Picard and Jayneway). Why we never got Spock, Uhura, McCoy and Sulu in those uniforms, I will never know.

132. T2 - January 28, 2008

#131 Yeah, they never released those characters in movie uniforms, would’ve been great. It’s the same with Playmates’ last series release: the TNG crew from Insurrection. They released everyone except LaForge. Not sure why. There were a lot of incomplete sets though ( like TNG Dress uniforms: no Worf, Troi, Crusher)

Also was hoping for a DS9 release in the later uniforms. Always liked the phasers, tricorders, ship models, mostly very good (except the TNG type 1 phaser, First Contact Enterprise E) Art Asylum has just been getting good and now here comes Playmates. Fantastic

133. Irishtrekkie - January 28, 2008

lol wow i had the Playmates TNG Tricorder and Enterprise D playest , they where great , yea i was like the only 7 year old i knew playing with them , oh the good times . star trek is always COOL , but yea new toys thats great .

134. Rick James - January 29, 2008

I only own one Playmates Star Trek toy and it be the ST:V/VI Assault Phaser pistol. I love how the cowling cocks back and forth like in the ST:V movie. Also the light and sound was a nice touch and the battery compartment is built into the handle magazine. Otherwise none of the other Playmates stuff really impressed me all that much. I think I might have the Playmates TOS communicator lying around somewhere … In any case it is put away along with the phaser in storage somewhere.

As for AA: I have the NCC-1701-A which is proudly displayed on my bookcase.

Hmmm I think I have more diecast cars on display than Star Trek stuff now that I think about it.

135. JGG1701 - January 29, 2008

“Their previous efforts were too “toy-like”.
That’s funny I thought they were toys. :-(

136. Roy Burr - January 29, 2008

It’s about time Playmates got their hands on Star Trek again!!! Yes, Diamond Select Star Trek items are great, but they are too big to make any Bridge Playsets or ships to fit the figures in like Playmates did. Also, Diamond Select Star Trek Figures don’t come with a base to help the figure stand by itself like Playmates did. Yes, the detail on Diamond Select Star Trek Figures are alot better than Playmates, but don’t forget they are also larger which means better detail. The detail in the Playmates Star Trek line was good enough for me. I could tell who each figure represented by looking at the figure. And who knows 8 years after not having the Star Trek License, Playmates may improve on what I thought was a great line already. I do hope that Playmates does make a Enterprise Bridge Playset for this movie. Playmates did make a TOS Bridge Playset some years ago. I saw pictures from the New York Toy Fair, but for some reason it was canceled. I can’t wait for these figures to be released. I do hope that they will be the same size as their previous Star Trek Figures.

137. Anthony Pascale - January 29, 2008

135….well said!

These are toys people. Toys for kids to play with and have fun! And if kids want to play with trek toys again like we did when we were kids, then the franchise is secure for decades to come. Trek shouldn’t be treated like a precious gemstone…under glass…never changing. It should be fun again!

138. jonboc - January 29, 2008

…I agree it needs to be fun but it can afford to be accurate too. I remember how pissed my freinds and I were with the phaser flashlight that looked NOTHING like the phaser we all thought was so freaking cool. And the TOS communicators were crazy oversized and blue! Blue!! Sure, we bought them and we played with them…but we bitched about it as well.

You can make these things playable, but you shouldn’t talk down to the kids either…they will have the DVDs playing night and day…they know what the props and ship is supposed to look like.

And Playmates…PLEASE don’t do a thousand variations of one character. That IS a stunt that was aimed at completist collectors. Two or three is one thing but Playmates got ridiculous with the different variations.

139. I AM THX-1138 - January 29, 2008

I have the DST AA original 1701 and WHMHGB Enterprise along with TWoK Enterprise. If I were so inclined, I could play with them and not worry about doing any more damage than one would to the Playmates ships. Same with my DST AA phaser. What the heck are people doing to their toy ships to make them break, throwing them? And I paid under $40 for them, so it’s not a cost issue. I imagine that the Playmates ships are going to go for around the $30 mark.

Look, it doesn’t matter who makes the “toys”, I buy them too and would like to put them on display as well as have the kids enjoy them. My son has put his new Star Wars ships up on the shelf with my stuff and they look great. For Christmas I got him a TIE fighter that is in scale and accurate to the screen ship for $40. I hope that Playmates can do the same.

140. ? - January 30, 2008

“The Voyage Home”

Welcome back!

141. Chadwick - January 30, 2008

Yea one problem..ONE F*CKING HUGE PROBLEM, the star ships which playmates designed looked like CRAP compared to the star ships that Art Asylum has made. Once I saw the art asylum ships I sold all my Playmate federation vessels online and bought the 3 different versions of the original 1701 enterprise, 1701 A, NX-01, 1701 E. These ships have been made with great detail where the playmates ships looked like crap ESPECIALY the Phoenix! The package shows that it’s a grey metallic ship and when I bring out its white!!! Like some piece of crap made in forsaken china painted by a child in a sweatshop. I wish Paramount would at least give art asylum the duty of making the star ships, tricorder, phaser..leave that to Playmates

142. Chadwick - January 30, 2008

MAN!! I was hoping Art Asylum was still going to put out the Enterprise B, C, and D, maybe even the Defiant. I hear they were working on a Miranda class vessel like the Reliant.


Art Asylum, nice detailed ships which are made in china BUT don’t look it!!!!

Playmates made two versions of the Enterprise E, now put both of those beside the Enterprise E which Art Asylum designed ..MUCH MUCH NICER! The first version of the Enterprise E by playmates did not even look like the ship! I have no idea who designed it but they had no eye for detail or proper reproduction.

websites In order: Look at the photos and compare, PLAYMATES ARE SHIT!!!
Playmates Enterprise E first model
Playmates Enterprise E second model
Art Asylum Enterprise E

I mean look at the detail Art Asylum puts on. Playmates ships look like toys and are just that..TOYS, they are toys for kids meat to be played with, I am not a kid I don’t want toys, I want a ship to sit on a desk or table and look pretty. Once and while, take it off, make some swooshing sounds and that’s it. I don’t want a toy I want a model!

143. General Order 24 - January 30, 2008

Playmates should have never lost the license in the first place. Yes Art Asylum makes more accurate ships and weapons. Fine. but their figures suck. Bland, constipated expressions, rubber tunics, piss poor paint that scratches off. Playmates figures at least were solid and durable enough to take a shelf dive without harm. Plus the size was perfect, I want consistancy in my figures. I hope they make the new movie stuff like the old stuff. Then they will fit into my collection just fine. AA can keep making ships and weapons, at least they are good at that. Now only if they can use less brittle plastic on them.

144. Patrick Lynch - January 30, 2008

When the Playmates toys first came out, I was thrilled because the 9 inch Kirk figure actually looked like Shatner. The majority of the nine inch figures looked just like the actors that portrayed them and they still hold up well today. The prop toys were fabulous but I wished the TOS tricorder had been bigger or that the communicator beeped when the lid was flipped. But compared to the Star Trek toys of past eras, these were practically prop quality by comparison. I felt the quality of the little figures had gone down hill by the end, but the early small figures were really good. I really liked the twelve inch figures and hope they start doing them again so I can have a proper Kirk to go with my McCoy and Spock. A Dr. Crusher at that size would be nice too. These were the kinds of toys I would loved to have had in the 60’s so I started buying this stuff in my thirties and I still have all of mine proudly displayed on my fireplace mantel and I’m approaching 46. I have a couple of the Art Asylum figures but mostly the ships. I love the articulation of the Art Asylum figures and that they have well, figures. Compare the Art Asylum Uhura or Vina the Orion Slave Girl with any of the Playmates small female figures or the First Contact Dr. Crusher which being slightly taller is a nice size but she has a very generic figure.

I have both the Art Asylum TOS Enterprise and the Playmates TOS Enterprise and I love them both for slightly different reasons. The Playmates ship is clearly as Rick Sternbach said based on the AMT model kit. In fact, when the Playmates Enterprise came out, I stopped working on an AMT kit of the same vessel. Loved the sound effects and that it was in scale with my other AMT ships.

However, I like the Art Asylum ship for being more accurate and also for its cool sounds though I wish the sounds would play longer. Especially the warp drive, but the Playmates ship was more fun because you could hurl as many photon torpedoes as you want!

I’m glad both Art Asylum and Playmates have the license. All I want Playmates to do is do what they originally did well and make some cool stuff again.

145. Star Trek Movies » Playmates Prototypes Provide Clues To New Star Trek Uniforms - January 31, 2008

[…] Earlier this week, broke the news that Playmates Toys was granted the toy license the new Star Trek film. Now a new article from one of the Internet’s most popular collecting websites,, not only confirms the news, but also gives details on some of the first prototypes being shown off at UK ToyFair which kicked off today. According to, Playmates was showing off prototypes of three different lines: 4″, 6″ and somewhere between 9″ and 12″ versions (approximated). There are also interactive playsets, including the Enterprise bridge and transporter room scaled for the 4″ action figures. These sounds similar to Playmates Enterprise D Bridge and transporter playsets from the 90s, which featured authentic sounds and visual effects. […]

146. J - February 1, 2008

I used to have a big collection of the Playmates Star Trek toys……from various figures over the years, including the TOS Enterprise, FC Enterprise-E and even the Space Talk Enterprise-D. I even had the Enterprise Bridge, Transporter, and Engineering Playsets. They were the best figures and toys ever made… doubt about it. There was one downside: as their toy license neared an end, they began to slowly produce figures in less and less quantities. I could never find an Insurrection Enterprise or any 4.5 Insurrection figures in my local Wal-Mart. Hopefully, with Playmates reobtaining the license, maybe we can see a reissue of some of their classic lines.

Art Asylum has one thing, however, that Playmates never did in eight years of holding the license: release the Enterprise Refit/Enterprise-A in any form. (of course if they had, it would have looked utterly horrific) Prior to Art Asylum, the only electronic model of the first movie Enterprise that ever came out was a little toy by South Bend issued in 1979-80 for TMP.

147. M. - February 4, 2008



We must have bought two entirely different sets of figures from Playmates. I don’t know which supposed figures you purchased, but mine were horribly sculpted and terribly painted. They resembled the characters from the animated series more than anything.

And as for your criticism for the Art Asylum line….

Again, I say Huh?! I think somebody needs a lesson in human anatomy and correct proportion if they think that the Playmates toys were the ideal…

148. Geez, EVEN MORE G.I.Joe related news… | Blog of Much Holding: a Joseph Dickerson joint - February 5, 2008

[…] Well, with less than three weeks away from New York’s Toy Fair (where retailers get a chance to look at the new merchandise that the manufacturers offer so they can place advance orders) news is beginning to leak out about various licenses and product lines.  Last week Playmates, makers of Star Trek toys throughout the 1990s, announced that they have re-aquired the license, for the new Star Trek movie…  which is cool enough, BUT not what this post is about…Sideshow Toys, makers of super-high quality 1/6 scale action figures (which is the scale I collect) announced on thier site Sunday they will be making G.I.Joe products. Very little details as they announced it in a “superbowl ad” – video here.Sigh. And here I am, trying to save money. Oh well. I wonder what cat food tastes like… UPDATE: Reax from the 12″ collectors here.  G.I.Joe, Star Trek […]

149. USS Anduril's Captain - February 12, 2008

This news does not instill confidence, no. By the time Playmates lost the license, the Star Trek line had declined. The figures were the only things still worth buying in terms of accuracy. Playmates props were always oversized, with the exception of the TNG tricorder and other TNG accessories. Ships like the 1701 and the Ent-D and the Romulan and Klingon ships were great, but detail started failing around the time of Voyager, the Voyager herself having some neat features, but being a bit too fat in the saucer and having hard to work buttons. The Defiant was close, but the unnecessary feature of a moving front section was dumb. And need I bring up both the First Contact and Insurrection versions of the Enterprise-E? That and the fact that, unlike Art Asylum, Playmates was too lazy to actually paint on the starship registries, making crappy stickers that didn’t stay on for an extended period of time. I’m not looking forward to the toyline until I see some indication that they’ve improved. If I really want the new Enterprise, I’ll wait for the Christmas ornament.

150. Captain Munoz - April 7, 2008

The first figure I bought was riker. I didn’t undertsand why at of all the figures his is the only one battle damaged. He had rips all over him. But sadly when I bought them it was the end of playmates and I cried why! I hate getting called a freak only because of star trek I do hope these figures make star trek cool again.

151. Spock II - January 4, 2009

I had Star Trek Generations action figures growing up

152. Harvey Henkelmann - January 13, 2009

Still got my Micro-Machines Enterprise, Klingon D7, and Romulan BoP… unopened

153. John D'oh! - June 28, 2009

I bought some playmates toys (TNG era [riker and Geordi]) a while back from a collectables store. I bought thr USS enterprise a few weeks ago from an unsatisfactory Toys R’ Us near my house

154. Ardith Starr - April 21, 2011

Superb blog! Do you have any suggestions for aspiring writers? I’m hoping to start my own website soon but I’m a little lost on everything. Would you recommend starting with a free platform like WordPress or go for a paid option? There are so many options out there that I’m totally confused .. Any ideas? Thanks! is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.