Well 2008 is almost at an end and so for the next few days TrekMovie will be looking back at the year that was. The editors have combed through the year to pick the Best of 2008 in a number of categories and today we start off with the best Star Trek merchandise of the year. See below for our picks for the best toys, figures and all the fun stuff for the year.
BEST STAR TREK MERCHANDISE OF 2008
It has been a good year for collectors with all sorts of great new Star Trek items covering various eras, product types and price ranges. After combing through all of our news and reviews, we have picked our favorite items for the year.
Best Toy – Diamond Select TOS Communicator
There are few toys that receive near universal praise, and the Diamond Select Toy role playing TOS Communicator toy is one of those. It has nearly everything both collectors and role players want, an iconic item, great details, fun features, and all for just $29.99. The toy has everything from lighting and sound effects, to a spinning moiré, to the very fun call back feature so you can feel like one of the crew, all wrapped in an amazingly authentic shell, considering the price. [Full TrekMovie review w/ video]
DST’s TOS Communicator is accurate, fun and cheap…what else can you ask for?
Best Action Figure – DST / EMCE Retro Cloth Khan
If there is one trend in collectibles for 2008 it is the retro cool of The Original Series. In preparation for the film, many licensees are releasing items that hearken to good old days with everything from PEZ to Christmas statues bearing the likeness of Kirk, Spock and the TOS era characters. When DST and EMCE Toys decided to release their first ever original MEGO styled action figure, the choice was superior: Khan Noonien Singh as seen in "Space Seed." With this figure, fans got a true postmodern item — a totally new, yet retro action figure. The 2008 Khan features an incredible sculpt that at once was recognizably Montalban and yet also very much in the style of the MEGO action figures. [Full TrekMovie review]
Khan is the superior figure of 2008…of course
Best Ship – Johnny Lightning’s TAS Romulan Ship
Johnny Lightning ships are nicely detailed toys that retail for about $7. It is nice to have a collectible that is both affordable and offers such a nice variety of ships. This year, eight ships from all versions of Star Trek were added to the JL line, and while an honorary mention belongs to the Star Trek III destruct version of the USS Enterprise, perhaps the neatest item was the Romulan D7 battlecruiser ship based on the animated episodes. There has never been a great deal of items available from TAS, nor of the Romulan D7 and it nice to have a cool and detailed item from JL. [Full TrekMovie preview]
TAS gets its own ship toy from Johnny Lightning
Best Collectible – Rittenhouse "Movies in Motion" Lenticular Cards
Offering lenticular (moving) trading cards of all 10 Star Trek films, the newest set from Rittenhouse is a wonder. The technology on the cards is amazing, as if the cards a like movie theaters showing a few frames of the film. By tilting the cards, fans can watch Kirk yell "Khannnn!" or Spock’s eyebrow express "fascination." Each box has three signed cards from various feature film actors and is a great item for those fans who do not like collecting toys. Also nice is that there are images from both TOS and TNG characters. [Full TrekMovie review]
Relive Khan with a 3-D card, one of many in the Rittenhouse movie set
Best Collectible News of the Year – So Many Licensees
Last year TrekMovie put product licensing on our ‘worst’ list for 2007, but what a difference a year makes. In June of 2008 CBS announced over a dozen new Star Trek licensing deals and more deals have been announced throughout the year covering products related to the new movie as well as ‘classic’ trek merchandise. New licensees (for example, PEZ, 20Q, Burger King), returning licensees (Mattel, Playmates) and continuing licensees (Pocket Books, DST) help show what we fans have always known, that Star Trek has value and is an attractive franchise. Star Trek is starting to be seen in retail stores again (Toys R Us, Walmart) which is a sign of its return to the mainstream, something Star Trek deserves and the sheer amount of licensees help to demonstrate.
First ever Trek PEZ came out in 2008
Worst Collectible News of 2008 – DST Delays
All in all 2008 was a good year and there really aren’t any products that we can point to as totally sucky. In fact the only real thing that qualifies for a ‘worst list’ are the delays of many of the Diamond Select items that were supposed to arrive in time for the Christmas season, including the TOS Tricorder, the Enterprise D ship model and many more figures and toys. Apparently the Olympics in China caused the delays, but some of these items have been on pre-order for over a year. But at least it saved some cash for collector’s this Christmas.
DST’s D, one of the items not delivered in 2008
What we are looking forward to in 2009
Of course 2008’s loss is 2009’s gain as those DST items are will be coming out in coming months and Spring, and they will be butting up against all the movie toys as well. Here are some of the things we are most looking forward to in 2009.
- DST USS Enterprise D ship
- DST 1/4 scale Ultimate Kirk and Spock and Kirk screaming ‘Khaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan’ figures
- DST TOS Tricorder and TWOK Phaser toys
- DST Life-sized TOS captain’s chair
- DST electronic tribbles
- New Funko bobble heads and vinyl figures
- Playmates Star Trek 2009 movie ships, toys and figures
- Tyco R/C Flying Enterprise Toys
- Mattel SceneIt? and 20Q games
- Burger King toys
- Completed Hawthorne Village Figurine Collection
Prototype of R/C flying Enterprise (the communicator is the controller!)
More Best of 2008 coming up
There is a lot more ground to cover in 2008. In the next few days we will be picking the best official productions, fan productions, and news & events from the world of Star Trek, along with our ‘Trekkies of the Year’ so stay tuned.