Imagine you’re a kid in the 1980s, surrounded by action figures of every movie, TV, and comic book character you can imagine, all brought to life in molded plastic.
Now imagine you’re the weird kid, like me, who was in to that lost corner of comics, the dusty back issues from the 1940s the other kids never heard of--The original Daredevil. Stardust, the Super-Wizard. The Black Terror. Silver Streak. Then throw in a long-lost toy line like Captain Action.
Let’s just say my homemade figures of these guys got me laughed at on the playground. Lots.
Flash forward thirty years and I’m now a grown man who knows how to make real action figures, one who has found more weird kids like me who love that lost old stuff. You know, the stories where men were men who fought for what was right, heroes who put down dictators and villains bent on subjugation. They weren’t just super heroes, they were AMAZING HEROES.
Inspired by our childhood toys, we now hope to create action figures based on these heroes of yesteryear in an all-new, 4.5” retro line. You can help us achieve our dream of seeing these four-color heroes become plastic icons with this Kickstarter for Amazing Heroes. Our goal is to make a Vintage Superhero Action Figure line that is reminiscent of the action figures from the ‘80s, but that features these colorful and popular Golden Age heroes. For most of them, it will be the first time they’ve ever gotten the action figure treatment!
With his striking black costume with skull and crossbones, The Black Terror first busted out in 1942. When pharmacist Bob Benton is exposed to experimental vapors, he becomes an unstoppable crimefighting machine, along with his sidekick Tim. The best of the early Black Terror stories were produced by the team of artists Mort Meskin and Jerry Robinson, after Robinson helped create Batman’s trademark atmosphere.
Wielding two powerful boomerangs thrown with expert skill, the duo-toned Dare-Devil was created by Jack Binder as a yellow and blue mute superhero in 1940’s Silver Streak #6. Promptly retooled by future Plastic Man creator Jack Cole into the red and blue dynamo with the spiked belt, he fought both Hitler and the monstrous Claw. Dare-Devil took on a kid gang of his own, and became one of the greatest successes of the Golden Age.
Stardust, the Super Wizard debuted in the pages of Fox Publications’ Fantastic Comics #1 in December, 1939, created by cartoonist Fletcher Hanks. Populated by grotesquely drawn characters, Stardust is the epitome of wonky Golden Age comics, as he uses his magic-like powers to transform and decimate his enemies.
We even got the team behind Captain Action on board, and they’re letting us cook up an official figure of the good Captain, who is himself a master of disguise so great that he regularly takes on the appearance of other superheroes! Captain Action was the first superhero action figure. He was part of a groundbreaking multi-licensing deal when he debuted in the 1960s. He was on everything from Halloween costumes to card sets and now he’s back with an exciting array of new comics, books, figures, and more.
Created during wartime by Chinese American artist Chu Hing in 1944 the Green Turtle was the first Asian superhero, briefly appearing in Blazing Comics. The character was revisited by Gene Luen Yang (American Born Chinese) and Sonny Liew (My Faith in Frankie) in their acclaimed graphic novel The Shadow Hero (First Second Books).
Who is the Blank Slate? This mystery man without an origin has faced the Golden Age Daredevil. Along with his equally powered mindless minions, this blank spectral figure can take on the appearance and powers of anyone he's fighting.
While The Amazing Heroes will be a perfect addition to any collector’s shelf, they’ll also be just as welcome in your child’s toy box. My five year-old son has been the best test market. I’m always catching him eyeing the prototypes and asking me when he can play with them. So to make sure the younger fans get the most out of their play experience, the back of each package will feature a comic strip detailing the adventures of our Amazing Heroes. Throw in our digital Amazing Heroes Handbook and kids and adults alike will get to see these heroes in their original, four-color action!
Everything’s in place: we have the prototypes, the packaging, and the plan. Now all we need is the funding, which is where you come in. While everything is sculpted and ready to go into production, we still have to tackle the manufacturing costs. We have an established toy factory lined up, but we need the funds to be able to hit the start button and get this retro line of heroes rolling.
We’ve also come up with some cool rewards for every level! Here are some highlights (see full rewards list below):
Every contribution over $5 gets a PDF of the Amazing Heroes Handbook. Written by comics historian Christopher Irving (Graphic NYC/Leaping Tall Buildings with photographer Seth Kushner, and The Blue Beetle Companion) with covers by Tom Fowler (MAD MAGAZINE, MYSTERIUS, HULK: SEASON ONE and VENOM ) and Mitch Ballard, the handbook features historical info and original Golden Age stories.
While each figure costs $18, if you buy a set of all five Amazing Heroes you'll only pay $80.
Or you can get a Deluxe set of 6 figures, including the limited Green Turtle figure (limited run of 300) for $100.00.
Since we’re sure you’ve had your own heroes in mind, we can even professionally customize a hero for only $300--using our standard body and head options.
We also have a set of 4 figures in Kickstarter Exclusive limited edition vintage-style cardbacks. There will only be 25 sets produced and they will never be offered again.
The Wonder level gives you a chance to buy 300 units of a Golden Age hero. We’ll never release this hero again, giving you an exclusive figure! You can pick 1 hero from a list of classic characters such as Lash Lighting, Blue and Yellow Dare-Devil, Vulcan, or The Liberator. At $3,500, that comes out to less than $12 a figure.
Finally, the Invincible limit gets you 300 units of your own character at $13 a figure!
We've also got some great Kickstarter Exclusive stretch goals planned.
The first, at the $35,000 mark, is an exclusive Champion of Mars figure, based on the classic science fiction hero. You’ll be able to add him to your order for $18 (including domestic shipping).
The second stretch goal of $45,000 unlocks a very special offer. Everyone who orders all 5 Amazing heroes will receive the Silver Streak action figure for FREE!. For those of you who don’t know, Silver Streak was a speedster created in 1940 by Captain America co-creator Joe Simon, who was then (like Daredevil) taken over by the brilliant Jack Cole, who gave the hero his snazzy red costume.
Interested in learning more about these Amazing Heroes. Go back and discover the adventures of these Golden Age heroes at the Amazing Heroes Webcomic or check out the comicbook archive at our official sponsor the Digital Comics Museum.
Thanks so much for helping us out, and be sure to keep checking in with us for updates over the next 40 days.
Thanks again for supporting Amazing Heroes. We welcome any feedback you want to send our way.
Please note: All the product images shown throughout the Kickstarter are mock ups. We will strive to produce a finished product that meets or exceeds the quality of these approximations, but please understand that the final product is subject to change.
- Fresh Monkey Fiction
Resealable window box with inner clamshell, so you can remove your Amazing Heroes action figure. Plus the back of the box features an original Amazing Heroes comic strip with art by Tom Fowler (MAD MAGAZINE, HULK: SEASON ONE and VENOM )
Risks and challenges
No project of this size is without risk. This biggest challenge will be to meet our deadlines and remain on schedule. Even though we have the support of our reliable production partners, we will be doing our production overseas. To ensure the best products possible and meet the standards that our fans expect, we want to make sure we give ourselves enough time to engage and communicate with our manufacturers. Communication with our backers is equally important to us, because without your support, this project would not be possible. Our goal is to keep our backers informed as often as we can, and keep them up-to-date on any potential changes along the way.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (45 days)