Over the years I have come across many articles and websites featuring information and pictures on unreleased action figures. There are many 80s figure lines that had unproduced toys that reached the design or prototype stages, a very select few were even put out as a "first run" by the toy company before the line was cancelled or discontinued.
Below are my top 10 pics of unproduced figures (or sets of figures). I have ranked them solely on my personal opinion, considering factors such as figure design, significance of the figure, what stage its developement reached as well as a few other factors. There may be figures from other lines that I have forgotten about, so please feel free to post coments.
10. Silverhawks Copper Kid Laser Discs & Monstar Laser Lance
By the end of the second series of Silverhawks figures, there were only two action figures that were never produced. The MonStar with Laser Lance and Copper Kid with Laser Discs were shown in the 1988 Kenner toy catalog, though the popularity of the line had declined enough to not warrant these guys hitting store shelves. Copper Kid's picture is a photo of an actual toy while MonStar's pic is only a conceptual drawing. Their are no known prototypes of these figures (at least nothing I have heard of). The Copper Racer as well as the series one Hawk Haven Fortress were also never produced, the fortress due to high production costs.
9. Bravestarr Unproduced 2nd Series
Mattel had plans to release more figures from the Bravestarr cartoon series in a second line. Dingo Dan, Judge JB and Longarm John were 3 of the propsed characters along with Rampage the Bull and the Starr Hawk vehicle. Prototypes of these action figures have yet to surface, though pictures do exist in some toy catalogs. They would have really filled out the figure line well, though the Bravestarr toys were not doing well, mostly due to larger sized figures than other popular lines at the time.
8. Captain Power Dread Trooper & Dread Commander
Captain Power were truly unique toys. With a live action TV show including cool toy interactive laser effects, it is a surprise that the line didn't last longer. The Dread Commander and Dread Trooper were the final two figures to be released in the line. Sadly they never made it to production. There are no know samples of these figures to date.
7. Star Wars - After "Power of the Force"
Kenner's plans for 1985 and 1986 were discovered in a special presentation binder featuring conceptual art and prototype pictures of some of the upcoming characters to be made into action figures.
Included were prototype pictures of Mongo Beefhead Tribseman, an Imperial Sentry Droid and three different Imperial Attack Droids as well as pictures of proposed vehicles and other conceptual art. There is an article about this line extension by Steve Sansweet in Topps' Star Wars Galaxy Collector Magazine, Issue 2, Winter 1995.
6. Centurions Unproduced 2nd Series
The Centurions also had a set of action figures that were to be released in 1987. Rex Charger with his Electro Charger and Gatling Guard accessories and John Arrow with his Silent Thunder and Arrow Knife accessories were to be introduced.
The series two sea and land monsters, Cybervore Shark and Cybervore Panther were also designed for the unproduced second series. As well, the Assault Weapons Systems, Strato-Strike & Aero-Sault for Ace McCloud, Awesome Auger & Land Laser for Jake Rockwell and Aqua-Blazer for Max Ray were shown in the 1987 catalog, but were never produced.
5. Sectaurs Unproduced 2nd Series
The Sectaurs 2nd series of unreleased figures were a spectacular looking set of toys, full of new characters and bug mounts.
Prototypes of Bodyball, Rhinox, Ax-Back, Snagg, Gyrofly as well as a first run figure of Stellara have recently surfaced from a collector with ties to an ex Coleco employee. Night Fighting Spidrax, Bandor, Nuckles, Swipe, Strangle Bug, Fly Flinger and Crossbow were also propsed figures in the line.
4. Transformers G1 Unicron
Unicron was never produced for the original G1 Transformers series due to cost concerns. Back in 1986, you could only imagine what a Unicron figure might look like, it would have been massive in size! There was actually a prototype produced for Unicron, and it is considered one of the most famous, yet ugliest toys ever made! Looking at its photo, it really is sub-standard when compared to some of the high quality figures in the G1 Transformers line. This possibly was a reason why it was never released
3. Super Powers Unproduced 4th Series
The propsed 4th wave of Super Powers figures would have been the grandaddy of them all! One of the best action figure lines of the 1980s, there were still tons of secondary characters from the comics to choose from. For the most part there are no known prototypes, only conceptual art for most of the propsed figures. El Dorado, Shockwave, Silico, Blue Devil, Bizarro, Creeper, Metallo, Executioner, Supergirl, John Stewart, Kid Flash, Manhunter, Vigilante, Mister Mxyzptlk, Black Vulcan, Reverse Flash, Deathstroke, Obsidian, Black Racer, Atomic Knight, Howitzer along with Man-Bat and Quadrex (who are the only two with an existing prototype) were all in the line-up for the next wave. There were also a few Superman variants and a Power Plus line
2. Ewoks & Droids 2nd Series of Figures
I have lumped this two lines together into one pick as no single figure outweighs any other in importance. The Droids & Ewoks final series of figures are some of the most sought after action figure prototypes for Star Wars collectors.
The proposed Droids line would have consisted of Kleb Zellock, Mon Julpa, Jessica Meade, Vlix (who was produced by Glasslite in South America), as well as Governor Koong, Gaff, Mungo Baobab, and Admiral Screed in which no protype samples exist.
The Ewoks 2nd line would have contained Chituhr, Chief Chirpa, Bondo, Paploo, Morag and Weechee
1. Thundercats Mad Bubbler
The Mad Bubbler is rumored to have been produced for years by Thundercat fans. Various collectors have claimed to own one as a child and few claim to still currently have one in their collection. The figure has never been verified as being produced, though a prototype is said to have surfaced a few years ago.
The only known pictures are in the mini catalogs that were packaged with the final series of figures and on the cardbacks of the Rampagers. It's rumored that its action feature was to spout bubbles out of its mouth when the top of its head was pressed down.