The year was 1991. I was riding home on a school bus when someone had a new comic they were reading. There on the back cover of the comic was a sight that made my eyes nearly bug out of my head. A WOLVERINE FIGURE!?!

Yup, an ad just like the one above (though I don’t think it was this one) showed off the original series of Toy Biz’s X-Men figures. I promptly got the kid to let me see the comic and literally convinced my parents to take me out to Toys R Us that day to find some X-Men figures. Who knows why, but they actually did. I scored almost every X-Men figure that very same day.

All because of a little comic ad like this. I really liked these figures, although they look pretty rough by today’s standard. The only one I never owned was Apocalypse. My cousin had him though and we played X-Men that same weekend. All in all I thought the figures were pretty cool.

It allowed for great crossovers that had never been possible before. Sure there were those Secret Wars figures, but these guys were something totally new and in a league of their own. I distinctly remember one plot I played with these guys as Wolverine battled with Batman and used his claws to cut off the wings of the Batwing (ironically also the Toy Biz version) and it stuck with me nearly 20 years later. Good times.

Each of these figures had a goofy action feature. Wolverine’s was the best as his claws could pop in and out, but they could also STAY in. Something no other Wolvering figure has had work quite as well. He also had a removable mask. Storm’s lightning bolt could glow with a flick of a switch. Colossus had the lame lifting lever action. Juggernaut had the same action only his fists went in reverse like he was punching. Archangel could shoot missiles from his wings. Cyclops had the very cool light up laser beam eye. Nightcrawler had a suction cup and a bendy tail. Apocalypse had two sockets in his arms and legs that would allow him to stretch out about an inch and Magneto had real magnets in him and a removable helmet.

4 Responses to Classic Toy Biz X-Men Figure Ad

  • Mecha-Shiva says:

    God,I love these figures since I missed out on the Secret wars Marvel figures.

  • Lt. Clutch says:

    Being a bit older, I remember feeling the same rush when I spotted the classic ad for Super Powers figures and the Secret Wars one which Mike Zeck drew. But I was jazzed for these first-ever X-Men toys after seeing them in a Westfield catalog. I loved Cyclops' light-up laser beam, Magneto's removable helmet, and Wolvie's pop-out claws the best. Despite the hundreds of Wolverine figures released since then, no other one has managed to recreate this awesome feature. You'd have to sacrifice articulation below his shoulders, but I would love to see an updated Wolvie with the spring-activated claws. We might look back at these as being inferior in quality nowadays, but back in '91 they were the only game in town and they ruled.

  • I completely agree. It worked really well for it's time.

  • Mark says:

    These figures were great and still are.
    Back in the day when toys were actually toys to be played with…no one cared about scuplts or hyper articulation…they were just cool and fun.
    Also this line had a load of characters.
    I had Wolverine, Sabretooth, Archangel and Iceman.

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