Possibly the greatest trend to come out of Toy Fair 2013 is nearly 50 years old. It seemed like no matter where you turned, there was Adam West as Batman looking back at you, ready to dispense justice without needing to be almost as dark as the criminals he fights. Yes, the legal issues were worked out and the license for Batman 66 finally came up for grabs, and damn if everyone didn’t grab it.
Mattel is putting out two separate lines based on the classic series – one features Barbie as Catwoman and Ken as Batman (but the faces certainly, to my eyes a least, look more Julie Newmar and Adam West than the ubiquitous plastic couple)…
…the other is a truly amazing line of 6”scale figures complete with Toys R Us-exclusive Batmobile. There’s even a Batman in shorts with a surfboard from the episode “Surf’s Up, Joker’s Down”. Robin comes exclusively in a two-pack with Batman and a wall-mountable, wall-climbing base. Mattel’s Scott Neitlich promised there will be a Catwoman (but failed to mention which one, presumably it will be Newmar) and a Joker with a painted-over mustache.
NECA’s getting in on the action with a massive 18” figure of Adam West as the Caped Crusader, and it really is something you need to see.
There will also be old-school injection mold model kits from Moebius Models similar to the old Aurora kits. The six kit set will feature interlocking bases that form a larger Batman logo shape base. (They only had mock-ups as the final sculpts aren’t ready yet.)
Sadly that unified base won’t include Batgirl’s model, because, like all the other lines she’s conspicuously absent. This is because Yvonne Craig is the lone holdout on likeness rights and has yet to sign. Hopefully she will, as it would be a shame to have a Batgirl-shaped hole in our Batman 66 collections.
One last license I had heard about – I was told that the recently-reborn Captain Action line would be getting some Batman 66-inspired costumes, but I could not find their booth so I don’t know for sure. However, given the new availability of the license and the retro cool of the toy line, I’d almost be surprised if it wasn’t true.