Thursday 28 May 2020

Rare Galoob TNG action figure prototypes up for auction

Two super rare Galoob TNG action figure prototypes, Wesley Crusher, and a Romulan, are currently up for auction on Ebay. These figures would have been part of a second wave of TNG figures from Galoob's first range of TNG toys; but alas the line was cancelled before they ever entered production. These prototypes are hand-painted resin figures, on a single-sided card-back. They would have been used for promotional and sales purposes before final figures went into production. Just a handful of each of these prototypes exist. Continue below for a rare chance to get a really good look at these lost toys:

Amusingly the Wesley figure does have something on the back, a note reminding someone to "Return to Bob" (sorry Bob, don't think you're getting him back!). Despite being very rare, another of these came up for auction from Hake's just in March. That prototype did have a printed back, giving a glimpse at what the final release could have looked like:

Incredibly this seems to be the only action figure version of a Wesley in his signature strippy jumper ever (not quite) made - Playmates and Diamond Select Toys both opted for his Starfleet uniform. You can get him in this outfit as a bobble head, Titan vinyl figurine, or Heroclix gaming piece though.

The Romulan, noted on the packaging as "Warring Enemy Aliens!" is specifically Tabok, from the first TNG appearance of the Romulans in The Neutral Zone. Like Wesley, another of these prototypes was recently sold by Hake's, and that featured a printed back, rather than the blank back from the currently available version. Another of these was also sold last year too, an even earlier prototype mounted on a Picard card (see my previous report to check that out).

Tebok is even rarer toy than Wesley, as his distinctive uniform, with a TOS-Romulan style sash, was only seen in that one episode; with a revised Romulan uniform used for later TNG appearances. Still Playmates did eventual make a version of this action figure a reality, albeit at a much larger scale, in their nine inch range - He still didn't get named, marked up just as a Romulan Commander.

If you're not familiar with the Galoob range, they produced ten TNG action figures, based on season one of the show. As a result some of the character choices seem a bit whacky in retrospect. With Antican and Selay (only featured prominently in the episode Lonely Among Us) action figures in a wave of alien characters, joining species that did manage to become more established, Q and the Ferengi.

Six of the main crew were also in the line; so Wesley wasn't the only one left out, with no love for Counselor Troi or Doctor Crusher either. The characters that did make the cut - Captain Picard, Riker, Data, Worf, La Forge, and Yar - all came with phasers molded permanently to their hands!

Released alongside the figures were two vehicles for them to move around in. The curvy type 7 shuttlecraft, and a "Ferengi Fighter", a shuttle-sized version of the Ferengi Marauder.

Galoob also released a couple of other non-action figure toys (a phaser, and a die cast Enterprise-D), and went on to release a huge collection of tiny Star Trek ships in their Micro Machines range. But they did have plans for even more TNG stuff besides these aborted figures, had their original TNG line continued: TrekCore have an excellent three part history of their TNG toys, which is well worth a read.

If you fancy picking up a rarity, the prototype Wesley Crusher and Romulan figures have just a few days left at auction on Ebay. While to keep track of new Star Trek toy releases, hit the "Models, Toys, and Games" button on my 2020 schedule page.

Many thanks to my reader Paul for pointing me towards the auction listings!

1 comment:

Unknown said...

You're welcome, glad to help!


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