Sunday, February 16, 2014

Toy Fair '14 Photos Give First Look at GotG Villains, Hint at Planet Hulk?

Toy Fair '14 is just getting under way today, but over the past couple of days we've seen plenty of images of what the exhibit has to offer and yesterday Hasbro sent out hi-res pics of their upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy line which gave us our first look at some of the films characters and cemented a connection in the cinematic universe that has long been rumored.

With the release of Guardians of the Galaxy still over 6 months away and the lack of an official trailer as of yet (though one is expected soon-ish) there was a lot of excitement yesterday over the reveal of some of the action figures from the upcoming Marvel film.

While we know the toy lines aren't always exact replicas of the characters' on-screen look, we are able to get a pretty good idea of what to expect. Having said that, here are the Marvel Legends versions of the Guardians themselves (and I think they look very good):

I really think they've nailed the look for Groot and I love the gun Rocket is toting. The rest of the crew looks good as well. After almost 2 years of hearing how this movie is going to fail because nobody knows the characters, I'm glad people are starting to change their tune and having exposure to these good looking toys is only going to increase interest.

The next two photos give us our first look at two of the film's villains: Ronan, the Accuser and Korath, the Pursuer, two members of the alien Kree who are on the hunt for the Guardians. 

While director James Gunn did come out and tweet us that the character designs aren't 100% movie accurate, the action figure for Korath looks a whole lot like Dijimon Hounsou, the actor portraying the Pursuer in the film. Both of these figures suggest a drastically different look for the characters than what fans of the comics are used to. For my part, I think they look great and as long as Ronan has the Universal Weapon and the same stoic personality, I don't care about his costume design. It's also clear now that we caught a brief glimpse of Korath in the Comic-Con footage (which also featured the Milano star ship shown in the intro to this story, which it seems will be the Guardians main mode of transportation).

A character that will probably not play a huge role in the film but helps to further expand the corners of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and makes a very solid connection to long-rumored Planet Hulk film is this Sakarian Warrior.

This is the same look as the guys who appeared in these set pics with Michael Rooker's Yondu a few months into filming:

These guys appearing in Guardians of the Galaxy and the concept art from Thor: The Dark World which included several other characters associated with the Planet Hulk story are starting to seem more than coincidental. On the surface, I can't think of any reason to introduce Sakarians into the MCU when there are several other alien races which could fill the roles of "Yondu's muscle" other than to leave footprints along the way to the eventual introduction to their home planet of Sakaar. 

Marvel is only just getting started with its Guardians of the Galaxy marketing campaign. Thanks to a Yahoo! snafu, a trailer is expected by Tuesday of this week and you can bet that there will be one attached to Marvel's next MCU installment, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, which opens in U.S. theaters in just about 6 weeks. Hype around the Cap sequel is intense and hype is starting to build for the Guardians. Marvel is hitting on all cylinders right now and it seems this year's offerings aren't going to disappoint.