Why I Collect Toys

Vincent   January 10, 2011   25 Comments on Why I Collect Toys

I recently had a conversation with a friend that seemed pretty anti-toy collecting. At one point she had said something along the lines of, “those better be worth money if your draining your bank account.”  This made me a bit defensive. Why is it such a negative that I buy toys when I could waste my money on any number of stupid things? While I’m not always in a collecting toys mood, at my core I am a toy collector. The conversation motivated me to revisit an old article that I wrote for the blog Toy Bender where I went into detail about my motivations of why I collected. The following is the article which at one point made a big splash on the internets. I’ve recovered it and am reposting it here, though I did tweak it a bit so if you read it before, read it again!

Why I Collect Toys

I hate to bring down the rocking all night party here, but it’s time to get serious for a moment. Recently I decided to be a little introspective and I asked myself, “Why I am a toy collector?” Why is there a drive in me to collect items meant primarily for children? More importantly, why don’t I feel bad about it? Even if you are a mild collector of all things toy related, have you ever stopped and asked yourself why you do it? After asking myself these questions, I decided to write this to further explore my own feelings and to see if anyone else out there has similar reasons. In short, I decided to write an essay.
starwarsroom1smallMy desire to own and display various pieces of plastic primary intended for kids all began with a bizarre recurring dream I had starting in the early nineties where I was in a huge discount warehouse store. As I walked down the aisles full of plumbing supplies and gigantic boxes of cereal, I would stumble upon aisles full of toys. Not just any toys either. These toys were vintage 70s and 80s Star Wars and G.I. Joe figures and vehicles all at super low prices. In the dream I’d find the biggest cart I could and go nuts, loading it up with toys and figures as I possibly could. I would pick out all the ones I always wanted and never got or the toys that had been broken or lost during childhood. The Death Star play set would make it in the cart along with a Storm Shadow and maybe something Captain Power related. Somehow though, I could never quite make it to the checkout line. I would always wake up before that point pissed that I it wasn’t real. I then realized I had an annoying itch that needed to be scratched.

The toy shopping dream is what actually inspired me to become a toy collector. Hey, Martin Luther King Jr. I’m not. I was still in my early teens, had no job, there was no eBay, and I lived far away from any areas where there were fan conventions of any sort, so things were a little harder back then for someone like me. Still, I did my best and gathered all the Star Wars items I had and put them in a shelf in my closet. As time moved on and more and more Star Wars items came out. As months went on, the small closet shelf became a drawer, and then two drawers. New Star Wars items would trickle into stores and I’d pick them up. Still there was something missing; something crucial. There were no new Star Wars toys. The closest thing I had to actually collecting Star Wars figures at one point were some Star Wars Bend-Ems . I collected every one of those things and it helped quench the thirst for figures slightly, but it wasn’t enough.

Kenner answered my prayers in 1996 with the re-launch of a Star Wars toy line and my hobby became an obsession. But I never really asked myself why I wanted these figures. What was really driving my urge to collect these figures? Was it because I was a nerd? That may be, but that’s an almost chicken and egg scenario. Is it the nerd that collects the toy or does the toy collecting make you a nerd? I’d have to say the latter is true, the label of nerd is applied on hobbies like toy collecting where other hobbies, say gardening, aren’t considered nerdy. Simply being a nerd doesn’t make me want to collect toys. This is proven by the fact that there are “computer geeks” or pen and paper gamers that don’t give two craps about toys, while they certainly would be considered nerds by society in general. I’m also not some loser whose only outlet is collecting toys either, I have my own apartment, a decent job, and I’ve had sex at least one time in my life with a human being of the opposite sex (I even got married for a time after writing this article). The answer, at least in my case, is far deeper than a label.

parasite1small

I think the most obvious reason for my toy collecting habit is that the hobby brings me back to the good times of my youth. When you’re a child and you’re playing with toys there is nothing else like it. You’re innocent, you don’t have to pay any bills, no one has ever cheated on you and broke your heart, and you’ve never had your car stolen or anything terrible like that (hopefully). I think this is why I like keeping a lot of figures in the package, especially ones of the Star Wars variety. In a way, I’m preserving good memories from my youth that don’t exist in any tangible way. In my case, I associate Star Wars toys with the best Christmases of my life and with the ideal childhood two parent, middle class home of my youth. As I grew up and was exposed to hardships, I could at least subconsciously turn back to a time that was better. Star Wars toys had always been a part of that ideal time, so a need to still associate myself with them grew.

rebelhanger1b

Over time I found myself opening more and more figures and displaying them. While I believe my desire for such figures still relates the the physiological reasoning above, I think the reason why I began to open so many of them is that just plain look cool. It’s the same reason why people want to dispaly anything they purchase. A He-Man figure looking all bad ass is aesthetically pleasing.

The second biggest aspect for collecting is the thrill of the hunt. I post articles talking about my toy hunts, because that’s exactly what they are. Sometimes you want a particular item so badly its drives you crazy to the point of making you go to the same few stores every day in the hopes of getting it. There’s nothing quite like the feeling you get when you walk into that same store one day, walk down the aisle, and find what you’ve been looking for. Hey, some people get off killing varieties of animals, so I don’t think it’s a weird thing at all.

So while there is no one simple answer as to why I collect toys, and unless I go to a physchologist to try and dig any deeper into this issue, I think the main answer to my question is that a part of me never “grew up”. Personally, I don’t think this is all that bad of a thing, especially as it seems to be more common than it ever used to be. Out of all the ways I could have developed mentally, I’m thankful that I still like buying toys rather than doing drugs or storing a hooker’s body parts in my fridge.

Now it’s that time again where I turn to you, valued Robot’s Pajama reader. If you collect toys what got you started on the road to collecting figures or toys in general? And try to dig a little deeper than, “because they look cool.” If they didn’t look cool then you wouldn’t have them at all would you? I want some good answers here. Now comment away!

  • Darth Zombius

    I collect toys… I’m proud of my collection!

    http://www.sandtroopers.com/collections/darth_zombius/

    Sure when I have people over to my house. I get some interesting comments, baffled expressions and infinite questions. But I always get asked… WHY?

    Many people who enter my plastic crack addiction room wonder why I spent 100’s of dollars on kids toys. It’s simple really, I like it. It makes me happy. Sure I could spend money on hookers, pills and the like. But I choose to fuel that childlike imagination. And to remember the good times in life where I could let that imagination run wild. My world was filled with plots to overthrow Darth Vader, Cobra finally winning a battle, He-Man saving Eternia riding atop the family cat. Those were good memories. And when I sit in my Toy Room It all comes back to me. It’s like having a time machine. And it helps fuel my imagination to this day. I work in creative media, and when I run into a creative roadblock it all gets cured with a sitting in my action figure shrine.

    It’s a good time to be a toy collector. With all the love for everything 80’s making its way back, better articulation, awesome sculpts (thank Four Horsemen)… We are in good times. The only downside is the hit to our wallets and bank accounts. These toys are not cheap. Taking time to toy hunt cost gas. I live within a budget and I collect toys that I like and I never collect for investment purposes. It’s what I choose to do with my extra money. I invest in my happiness… Don’t judge me… I like who I am.

  • The image at the top reminds me of these videos I’ve seen of dudes that have their houses covered in unopened toys. You should put together some of the most out-of-control collections and type up a short review of each! That’d be very entertaining.

  • I honestly don’t know my reasons for collecting toys are.

    I do know I’m not collecting them as an investment. I don’t have delusions that whatever it is that I’m buying now will be worth hundreds of dollars years from now. I think that once the collecting bubble ‘70s and ‘80s burst we’ll never see that phenomenon again.

    I’ve often tried to rationalize my collecting thinking, well, I’m not an alcoholic, I don’t gamble, I don’t smoke (anymore), I don’t do drugs, I don’t visit gentlemen’s clubs.

    We live in a materialistic society. With “self-help” shows like Hoarders and The Biggest Loser, it’s a tell-tale, sign that e as a society are in big trouble, and of course growing up in that society it was very much a pro-collector environment.

    People collect all sorts of things; they collect bottles, postage stamps, coins, posters, albums, sports memorabilia, movie memorabilia, automobiles, video games, art, rocks, bugs, flowers, and so on and so forth. Hobbyists put together model trains and have intricate dioramas set up in their spare rooms and basements

    I look at toy collecting as hobby, pure and simple. I joke about it being an “addiction” and to some extent it is, but if I was in a crunch financially, collecting would be the first thing to go. I enjoy talking shop online, obsessing over the latest news and ranting about Mattel. I enjoy the hunts, having a few hours to myself just hitting up a few stores, and the euphoria of making a good score.

    I’ve had this general discussion with my real life collector friends. Do I collect toys because I “failed to launch” and I’m stuck in this state of arrested development as sort of a man-child? Am I trying to recapture my childhood for various reasons (Daddy/Mommy issues, a return to innocence, etc.). Am I depressed and feeling empty on the inside, so empty I feel as though I need to fill this gaping hole the size of the Grand Canyon inside of me with plastic? Part of me agrees about the “never grown up” theory and thinks it makes some sense, but somehow I don’t think its just a Peter Pan syndrome.

    I grew up an only child, money was tight for my family but we made due and there was little I ever wanted for. I believe the last line I collected was TMNT. By the time Power Rangers came out I remember wanting Mega Zord, but being told by my mother that I was too old for them. Then came the dark years during when I was too cool for toys. It wasn’t until my junior year of high school when I began watching Transformers; Beast Wars that I had bought my first toy as a teen. It was the fall of ’99 and I bought Transmetals II Megatron.

    I am a geek and I’m comfortable with that. I believe I’m a pretty well rounded geek, I’ve got plenty of non-geek interests in film, music, literature, art, sports, politics, etc, so its not like I’m pigeonholed into only debating about who is a better captain, Kirk or Picard. If you think of it, there are some guys who only talk sports, only talk politics, etc. Two of my uncles make great examples. One has his own man-cave, he’s got sports jerseys, pennants, posters, autographs, bobbleheads, etc. basically anything they can slap a team’s logo on — he’s got it. The other one is a much more, erm, “Domesticated” man, and maybe beyond a beer mug or a hat doesn’t have much else. So much like you say, simply being a nerd does not make you want to collect toys.

    I may collect toys, and it certainly is a part of me, but I don’t let it define me.

  • I got out of collecting around 6th or 7th grade, because it wasn’t cool. Of course I don’t know why that mattered since I wasn’t cool anyways. After that I was more into video games. Didn’t get back into collecting until after college. I was with my brother and a comic book store and saw a picture of Hasbro’s 12″ Boba Fett and thought it looked awesome, even if now my opinion has changed. So I started collecting 12″ Star Wars figures and really got in to Simpsons figures and Marvel Legends. At the time, I was single and had a decent job and so I went somewhat overboard at the time.

    Probably several reasons why I collect. Some of it is obviously nostalgia for my child hood, since I’m trying to complete a vintage loose collection of Star Wars figures. I liked hunting for toys, but for the most part that is gone with the internet. Part of it is opening new toys and finding a place to display them and get them set up. Also I just like to look around and just enjoy them. Plus it helps that my wife is supportive of my “doll” collection.

  • When I first started collecting as a teen, it was late ’99 and I was seventeen. I would mostly cherry pick from the Transformers lines from there up into the early ’00s. I got a handful of Beast Wars figures, but mostly only what caught my eye or was on sale. When RID came around I only picked up Prime, Magnus, and Megatron, I didn’t get any other figures from that line. I virtually ignored Armada/Energon/Cybertro, so there wasn’t a lot for me to buy. I didn’t consider myself a full fledged collector at that point, but I was starting to become more aware of the collecting community.

    I mostly cherry picked whatever stuck my fancy. I picked up an 18″ inch Ash and some random odds & ends. When the millennium 200x MOTU line came out, I only picked up He-Man, Skeletor, and Trap Jaw at first. I followed along with the reviews and frequented the boards at OAFE, but at that point I had really only dipped my toes in the pool. However then one Saturday I found Roboto and Zipline Batman from Mattel’s Batman line, and thus sparked a new obsession.

    I began to “hunt” as I picked up the rest of the Masters. When the 200x line was nixed there was a period where I didn’t collect much, but when the Horsemen’s stactions were released I collected those as well. Ultimately what solidified it was the Transformers Classics line which was initially meant to be sort of a placeholder in stores to keep room open for the forthcoming movie line. When Classics came out I didn’t intend to become a completiest, it just sorta happened. I picked up Prime, Megatron, Bumblebee, and Starscream and I was satisfied — for a while. Then I began to pick up the others like Mirage, Hot Rod, Astrotrain,etc. Even then I didn’t yet consider myself a collector.

    The last few years really feel like a whirlwind in terms of collecting. It all started mid-2007. I went a little crazy collecting some of the movie Transformers, the 25th Anniversary G.I. Joes. Then early 2008 I got into DC Universe Classics thanks to Mr. Poe Ghostal’s reviews of the Horseman’s stunning work. When Transformers Animated figures came out, I remember charging like $200 in one go on new stuff. Then He-Man came back with a vengeance with MOTUC in December 2008, which has had a firm grasp of my wallet since.

    I remember one reason why I thought I was collecting Transformers was because I never had Optimus Prime was a kid. I thought I was trying to somehow replace him. I had bought Transmetals II Optimal Optimus, Robots in Disguise Optimus Prime (the fire engine) and even Powerlinx Optimus Prime from Armada. When I finally found the reissue Prime at TRU I picked him up thinking that would be the end of it, I finally had the Prime I always waned! How very wrong I would be. When Masterpiece Optimus Prime was unveiled I knew I had to have him. I paid the extra cash to get the imported Takara version wiht the real die-cast metal and long smokestacks. That was pretty much a high point of my collecting career. Yet I still kept on going with subsequent releases, Robovision & Leader Prime from the movie line, Animated, all the way up to the most recent War For Cybertron release in the Generations line.

  • lamartherevenger

    Nice post. I tell people when I say I collect toys, I’m trying to get the stuff I wanted but my parents couldn’t afford. When people ask me what’s my best toy I got I say either the one or two of my G1 Transformers or my Dennis Hopper Waterworld figure I still have in the package.

  • Dennis Hopper figure, eh? I forgot they even made a Waterworld line until I saw a bunch of carded figures at a vintage toy/comic shop. The ’90s saw a ton of incredibly awful toy lines, like Hook, Demolition Man (which borrowed heavily from New Adventures of He-Man).

    If my house was burning down I’d try to grab as many MOTUC figures as possible and my Masterpiece Optimus Prime!

  • lamartherevenger

    my AT-ATs, Soundwave and some cassettes & definitely my H.A.V.O.C. (gotta grab the GI joe lunch box… that’s where Cross Country & my other figures are.. OH and Cyclonus)

  • The best Dennis Hopper figure was his King Koopa figure. Which moonlighted in my wrestling fed as a kid under the moniker “King Koopa Flair” and was, well, a knockoff of Ric Flair. Hey, I wasn’t original, but I just wrote about Ric Flair/Dennis Hopper/King Koopa all together.

  • Splitty

    Hey, I have totally have that Dennis Hopper King Koopa figure! Too bad they didn’t make a Blue Velvet figure. :( And it’s nice to see some other people besides myself get strange looks and eyerolls when their collecting habits are encountered. Go misfits! For me collecting is twofold. No wait, threefold. No, fourfold. Fivefold? …..six?
    Firstly, it really is in human’s nature to hunt, it’s just been domesticated. Some men hunt women, some women hunt clothes & shoes, some folks hunt sports things, some just hunt. I hunt collectibles, and I call it ‘Urban Safari Hunting’. Whether online or running amok about the city, I get my predatory on. I mentally whip my cavewoman club above my imagined head and grunt incoherently when I make a killing. It feels damn good.

    3D works of art. Alot of the things I collect I just really marvel on an artistic level. Detailed sculpts, sweet paint, artistic style. It’s like having a stinky plastic art collection. So displaying them never gets old, because I can just go revisit and ogle them anew. No likey the dusting though.

    Nostalgia plays a smaller role in my collecting. Some stuff from childhood I remember, but alot of my stuff has NOTHING to do with my childhood, just new cool stuff. Good thing too, or I’d be in a straight jacket by now. Fandom is a larger role (movie/tv/games/whatevs). I can’t explain the need to have figures of beloved movie/tv media. I guess it’s just a demon-spawn merging of the two passions.

    Probably more specific to me is it’s a creative replacement. Ages ago, artsy things I may have done were nipped in the bud by multiple tendonitis outbreaks and crappy soul sucking depressive jobs. That’s when the collecting habit took off like a wild brush fire. There’s a faux creating euphoria by collecting, displaying, photographing stuff I WISH I could make. I’m actually changing the color and substance of the world around me. Not as cool as actually creating, but it’s like Splenda or Sweet-n-Low.

    Another less generic reason is my very specific love of monsters and creatures going waaaay back into my childhood. The figures I HAVE to have with a quaking sweaty-palm need are MONSTERS. That can’t be explained, rationalized, or understood. It just is. Out of any line, those are the first and sometimes only on my want list. You have no idea how many bigfoot, yeti, cthulhu, chupacabra, aliens and mutants I still have to get. HAVE TO.

    Obsessive Addiction, Adrenaline, Euphoria, & Fun. And boredom. Obsessive personality? Check. Adrenaline freak? Check. Who doesn’t love some pure Euphoria? And let’s face it, number one for us is it’s just plain fun (if it wasn’t, we wouldn’t do it). Other people have to go to all sorts of amusements to get these feelings, but we get them snuggly wrapped up in one pastime. Oh, and boredom. Whenever things are a little bleak or staid, throw some collecting hunts in there, and PRESTO! Instant spice. Sometimes to be more generic I think I should just go back to drinking and partying on the weekends for fun, but with Toy Collecting….I don’t have that icky hangover. [:P

  • • @Splitty: I like your term, ‘Urban Safari’. There is truly nothing quite like the thrill of the hunt, and stumbling upon a nice cache at Toys R Us or Wal-Mart, and then taking that victory stroll to the cash registers with your latest find. Lets face it, unless I have a midlife crisis and decide I have to go on a walkabout Down Under, I will probably never “hunt” a living creature, nevermind my own values and opinion about killing animals purely for sport, but I digress. Ordering online feels so anti-climactic. You process your transaction, get a confirmation e-mail & tracking number, and wait 6-10 days, and then it magically shows up on your doorstep.

    The role nostalgia plays in my collecting habits varies. There isn’t much I buy these days because “I didn’t have it as a kid” or conversely “I had it as a kid but my mommy threw it out.” That said, I would wager that 51% of the reason I collect Masters of the Universe Classics is nostalgia. I collected the 200x Millennium MOTU line, but I didn’t quite get the same feeling from it as I do now.

    For everything else non-MOTU related (and to a lesser extent Transformers) fandom is a HUUUGE reason for me. I 100% completely know what you mean about needing to have figures from various tv/movie/media. The most recent example being Tron: Legacy. Before I saw the film I had little-to-no interest in any of the figures/products AT ALL. However, now that I’ve seen the film and I’ve entered into the Tron universe, I am totally feigning for some of that.

    Addictive, obsessive compulsive personality, low self worth, depression, adrenaline, boredom, all make me a collector.

  • Charles Wahlgren

    I read your article and aside from the dream, I saw several parallels. As a kid money was tight in the family. I can count the number Joes and Transformers I ever got on my fingers and toes. I too lived in the middle of nowhere so the drug stores (ie mom and pop mini Walgreens of the day) were the only outlet and they charged a premium. The toys I had were treasured and PLAYED with. Oh there were toys I knew about but were so out of my reach I never wasted my time asking for them, others I just never knew about (no internet, three fuzzy TV stations on the bunny ears). I remember racing up the driveway from my bus stop elated to have made it home in time to catch the last five minutes of the Transformers!
    Now as an adult with a big kid job (and a very understanding wife thanks hunny) I have indulged in a small venture of collecting some of the things I either had as a boy, never got, or merely lost to Time. Thanks to eBay it’s a whole new world. I can find those old toys, restore the ones in need of care, take whatever direction I want. I believe it is in a sense our duty to care for and protect those toys that survived our many collective childhoods. You hit a good point when you mentioned ‘the thrill of the hunt’. Absolutely! I focus mainly on Early to Mid 80’s Joes (though I have been known to stray to similar period Star Wars and Transformers when and opportunity presents itself), and anyone who has gone this route knows there are figure and parts out there that are just Hard. To. Find. So when one is scored -especially if some finesse is involved- it is indeed a small but proud and victorious moment.
    And yes, for a few minutes or hours a week I get to go back to the time when I didn’t have to clock in and deliver boxes, mortgages weren’t due, ans dryer vents didn’t clog. Maybe one day when I have them I can show my kids the toys I grew up with. Toys without micro chips, just minimal detailing, maybe a small motor. Toys full of adventure and imagination! It’s a small detour from the grind, a chance to be clever, peaceful with the dogs at my feet and the kitty in my lap just tinkering with an old Y-Wing or repairing a 29 year old Cobra Commander. My friends have been very supportive and have been known from time to time to ask about things, it brings them back too for a moment.
    Why do we do what we do? It exercises the mind, it’s a reason to relax, it’s a little project to be proud of and a way to share stories. It’s a doorway to reflect on where you’ve been and a reminder to not take things always so seriously. Plenty of time for that later. Right now I’m just going to fix a tank :)

  • Kid Nicky

    well,I’m 30 and I don’t really know anyone IRL who actively collects action figures. Most guys I know either “go out” on Fri-Sat which costs at least 40-50 bucks and could end in a ticket or jail time when you try to drive home,or they play shitty jockish FPS games that cost 60 bucks on a 300 dollar system that dies every six months,or they watch sports which doesn’t really cost anything on TV,but has huge ticket prices and tons of expensive merch.

    My point is,if people want to try to bust my balls because I buy a 10-12 dollar Transformer of DCU figure every couple weeks,I really don’t care. It’s the cheapest,safest hobby out there.

    And no,I don’t collect for an investment either. If you think any but a very small few post 90’s toys are going to be long term investments,you’re dillusional.

  • @Kid Nicky: I hear ya. I am fortunate that I’ve found some friends IRL who do actively collect. Of course it was the wonder and magic of the internet and our shared love for toys that brought us together. Still, what are the chances that complete strangers who to live in the same area happen to stumble upon each other on a toy web site? Well, we live in a very urbanized area so maybe it’s not all that unbelievable, still, I think its pretty cool. Otherwise none of my other friends are collectors. Sure, I have one buddy who grew up on Transformers and has a decent vintage collection, but the key word is vintage, I think the last Transformer he bought was 2-3 years ago. I have another acquaintance that actually does have a sizable collection but I don’t know that I’d actually call him a collector as much as he’s obsessed with various fandoms (Batman, Pirates of the Caribbean, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and acquires various figures and statues from time to time.

    I could certainly go out, spend $20 on a meal, blow another $40 on drinks and have a fun night (and that’s being cheap) but end up with a hangover the next day. I’ve never been a huge gamer, sure I’ve been a Nintendo loyalist all my life. I have a Wii, but I can’t remember the last time I touched it. I could never see the appeal of those FPS games like Halo or COD. Don’t get me wrong, they look fun and the graphics just keep getting better and better, but they just don’t hold my interest for very long. Any time I’ve played with friends I get bored with it very quickly. Not to mention the fact that the games are pricey along with the core system.

    @Charles Wahlgren: A lot of the figures I owned very early on were bought either from a second hand toy store or yard sales, so what toys I did have I appreciated. Just getting new toys was a huge deal to me so when I did I appreciated them even more. As I got older I was taught the value of a dollar when I found an Ultra Magnus on clearance at a discount retailer. My mother bought it, but she made me earn it. I was only 6 or 7 at the time (I think) so the $14 or whatever it was could have been $14 million. Eventually I earned the money to pay for it and my mother gave it to me, and I STILL have that Ultra Magnus.

    Talk about fuzzy stations on the bunny ears… we didn’t get cable at home until the early ‘90s, but that’s not what I remember. My mother used to be a book keeper for a mechanic/gas station. They had a small office above the garage where she’d work, and they had a stone age TV with bunny ears that got horrible reception, but every so often she’d bring me to work with her and I’d watch cartoons on that TV.

    I’ve been very lucky; most of my close friends are all very supportive of my hobby. I will occasionally have people texting me to tell me they saw something they thought I might like or how they were at a comic store and saw Castle Grayskull and thought of me. One huge way in which people helped me out was that I had asked some friends to enter into a contest where a toy was being given away. I didn’t win that contest, but I had a great deal of help from my friends and it really warmed the cockles of my heart to know that people would take such an interest in my hobby.

  • It’s not like I’m stranded amongst people I have nothing in common with,but I’m the only person who actually makes the rounds,goes to the figure aisle every time I’m at the store,reads Poe Ghostal,etc.

  • Kid nicky: I hear ya, I guess whay I was trying to say is that none of my IRL friends from school, work, etc. go on toy hunts or frequent these sites.

  • Chad B

    I can’t add much to this that hasn’t already been said. My reasons for collecting are pretty much the same as what’s already been stated. The toys I buy make me happy. I just wish I had more shelf space to display them all!

    PrfktTear, I know exactly what you mean about what happened with you after seeing Tron. That seems to happen to me after every movie of that sort I see. Iron Man, Transformers, GI Joe all caused me to go from lulls in collecting to full blown red alert toy hunting. Iron Man 2 not only sucked me into that toy line, but the whole Marvel Universe line. Now I’m trying to scale back a bit, and just go back to focusing on the classic Transformers that are coming out. Still looking for the new Jazz and Tracks for example.

  • I went a little overboard with the first Transformers movie. I didn’t collect both factions, just the Autobots, but there’s a lot of stuff that I bought which I regret now and is just sitting in the proverbial bin in the sky.

    Oddly enough, IM2 didn’t really make me interested in picking up any of the figures. I picked up the Mach III from the first movie line as well as the Iron Monger, but this time around I passed. I think its mostly because I don’t collect too much in the 3.75″ scale. I was VERY tempted to pick up a Whiplash (the once that I actually saw him) but I ended up placing him back on the shelf.

    Thats whats keeping me from picking up any Tron stuff, I’m afraid that I’ll just end up regret it in a year or so from now. I had a TRU coupon which I let expire without using it.

    I got a rewards coupon for $2 also, which I thought wasn’t much of a reward. I’ve dropped at the very least $150-$200 at TRU last year what with MP Grimlock the DC/MOTU. Classics 2-packs, random DCUC figures, Transformers and other whatnots.

    I have yet to see much of the new Generations figures out yet. Most of my local shelves are still littered with Bumblebees and Primes… blech.

  • Splitty

    Yeah, sometimes the movie will DETER me from buying figures I would normally want! Like with the Van Hellsing movie. The 12″ Dracula bat figure is one I would normally die for, but when I saw the movie the conclusion was IT SUCKS and I wanted nothing to do with it. Now that the movie is mostly forgotten, I want the figure again, but it’s too expensive to find. Oops. [:D

  • Hah! Splitty that’s so funny, but true. If you’ve ever caught our podcast we hammered that film in one of the first couple of episodes.

    Thanks for the comments everyone.

  • Well..im a girl so that been said…my mom will literally make me play with my toys but i need to put them back to the original box and take care of them.. then i got tired of doing that so i stopped opening the box… im a toy collector but not from movies or comics only.. pretty much im a collector of everything i have like…i have from vintage toys from the Wizard of Oz, vintage figures from Disney, star wars, lord of the rings, indiana jones action figures, i also have 1 Michael Jackson in the box limited edition, i have comics and my house pretty much seems like a teenager house. My mom just to say that i was such a tomboy, when i left my parents house when i was 18 (im 25 now), the only things that i was allow to take were my toys and my collection of stuff..i still cant display it all in my house coz is a 1 bedroom house..but my girlfriend collects toys too..so we have come to have this great collection. I get excited everytime i finally get the toy or comic or piece that was missing..i just finally got a 18 inch Freddie Mercury figure that i’ve been hunting for years..also i finally got a Charlie Chaplin circa 1972..so add to the toy collecting thing..i also collect dvds, i just got all the thundercats series new for 60 bucks! :D.i really do it for the same thing you all said.. makes me feel happy, makes me feel im not wasting my money in stupid wrong up stuff and Ebay/Amazon are my favorite stores ever… im happy that this is my addiction and not actual drugs.

  • Thanks for sharing! It’s always nice to hear from a lady collector!

  • Chris Piers

    Wow, this site used to have a lot more fans.

  • This article is an anomaly to judge how popular the site “used to be”. It was a HUGE hit on Digg at the time, getting tons and tons of traffic. That traffic generally didn’t stick around, much as it does from hits like Reddit does today.

  • Julien Dordellie

    This is my story, a brief part of it.

    As a very young kid, I remember myself at a family party,, I guess it was a cousin’s birthday or something like that. A clown started to make some contests with attendant kids, like me. One of the contests was very embarrassing, it was a dance contest. The price was a Super Powers Superman figure, I danced like a bloody twat and didn’t get anything. No Super Powers figure for me. I develop an insane hunt for super hero figures. This reached some other areas besides superheroes, such as Star Wars, Playmobil figures, Jurassic Park, Etc.

    Luckily, my father was wealthy on those dates, so he bought me most of the figures I wanted. Then I grew up (really) and I started purchasing my own stuff… I have around 1000 different action figures from Star Wars to DC and Marvel superheroes, Robocop, Terminator, LOTR, The Simpsons, etc.