As horror fans, we are completely spoiled with an endless array of toys, action figures, and collectibles that pay tribute to our favorite films. With companies like NECA, Mezco, and Funko continually stepping outside the box and bringing us toys we never even imagined displaying on our shelves, it’s a pretty damn good time to be a fan who happens to collect/hoard/whatever you want to call it. As I sit here typing this, I’m casually playing with an action figure inspired by the NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET Nintendo game, so again I reiterate, we’re totally spoiled.
Still though, it’s hard not to think about the toys we ALMOST had.
In the past here on Blumhouse, we’ve taken a look at a few horror toy lines that never came to be, including the infamous fourth series of SOTA’s Now Playing line, Mel Birnkrant’s MAXx FX line, and who could forget that wave of Transformers monster figures that got stuck in development Hell back in the 1980s? There’s something about being teased with something really awesome and then never actually getting it that is utterly heartbreaking, and though we hate to break your heart, we’re going to do it again today. Because we’re serving up another batch of cool toys that you’ll never be able to play with.
So grab some tissues. You just might need ’em.
Let’s waste no time getting real sad by kicking this list off with my personal favorite unreleased toy of them all. Companies like McFarlane, Mezco, and NECA have released countless different Leatherface figures over the years, leaving almost no stone unturned in regards to his many appearances throughout the TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE franchise, but only one of those companies even attempted to make fans of the highly underrated third installment happy. At the 2010 Toy Fair, Mezco showed off this incredibly awesome 7″ action figure of Leatherface from TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE 3, complete with the coolest iteration of his chainsaw in the entire series, but that was to be the first and last time the toy was ever seen. My heart. It just broke all over again.
Over the years, NECA added a few iconic DAWN OF THE DEAD zombies to their popular Cult Classics line of action figures, beginning with “Flyboy” in Series 3. Subsequently, “Plaid Shirt Zombie” made it into Series 4, while “Hare Krishna Zombie” was immortalized in plastic in Series 6. But it was perhaps the most memorable zombie from the film that got the shaft. Seen above in an image from HorrorHound Magazine, NECA had at one point planned on adding zombified Roger to the line, and the deluxe offering was to include the bed he infamously rose up from. How cool is that?! Sigh.
Just a few years after the American remake of THE RING, NECA announced that they’d be giving villain Samara the ultimate box set treatment, and they even showed off images of the prototype and concept art. In addition to, of course, a figure of Samara, the set was going to come complete with two display bases – a well and a television set – and the figure was to split apart at the waist so you could display the long-haired menace in whichever environment you preferred on any given day. She was even going to include two different heads, one with her face completely covered with hair and the other partially obscured. Thankfully for fans of the franchise, Japanese company Bandai recently released a similar figure, and a Sadako Living Dead Doll also came out in the years since NECA’s figure was shown off.
There was a time, back in the early 2000s, when NECA turned their attention big time to the HELLRAISER franchise, releasing three different series of action figures and all sorts of other collectibles. Oddly enough, though many different Cenobites made the cut, a figure of heroine Kirsty Cotton was never produced, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t planned. Before the line fell by the wayside, NECA had intended on releasing a boxed set including Kirsty and the horrifying Engineer from the original HELLRAISER, and the above prototype is the only proof we have that the set was ever in the works. Sadly, we never even got so much as a prototype image of the Kirsty figure – and no other company, to date, has brought her to the toy shelf. Does that make you sad? It makes me sad.
We round out the list with yet another unreleased offering from NECA. As part of their Cult Classics line, they released a figure of SHAUN OF THE DEAD’s Shaun in Series 4, and followed that up with a “Winchester Two-Pack” featuring battle-damaged Shaun and Ed, and the original plan was that the latter set would include extra parts so that you could turn Ed into Zombie Ed. Instead, they decided to release Zombie Ed as a standalone figure in a subsequent Cult Classics series, though those plans never came to fruition. What’s most interesting about this one is that a Chinese company somehow came into possession of NECA’s mold for the unreleased Zombie Ed figure, and you can find many cheap bootlegs over on eBay. They’re not official NECA product, and the quality is quite poor, but I suppose it’s better than nothing.
Can you think of any other unreleased toys that you still want? Let us know!