Anyway, today I wanted to shed light on another toyline I came across last weekend: The Shadow by Kenner, from 1994. The line was based on the superhero film The Shadow, starring Alec Baldwin. The character was originally created in the 1930s, by pulp novelist Walter B. Gibson.
The Shadow is the alter ego of playboy Lamont Cranston, who gained otherwordly powers through a connection to a cult named the Tulku. In his former life, Cranston was also known as Yin-Ko (Chinese for Dark Eagle), a warlord and opium kingpin in the far away Orient. After the Tulku turned him to good, he returned to his old hometown New York, where he starts to terrorize the NY underworld. He is challenged by another student of the Tulku, Shiwan Khan, last descendant of Genghis Khan, who wants to fulfill his ancestor's goal of world dominion.
I really like this dark touch about the story, also that Cranston was one of the bad guys before he turned to the good side. I've always been a cheerer for the bad boys when it comes to toys. But a good guy that actually looks like a bad guy, like The Shadow, is just as good to me (yeah, that's also why I like Batman).
Now, let's take a closer look at The Shadow action figures from 1994.
4 Shadow / Cranston figures, and 4 bad guys came out - 3 Shiwan Khans, and 1 Dr Mocquino. The vehicles were a rad mixture of 1930s designs with a futuristic touch. I scored the Ambush Shadow, and the Ninja Shadow. Telling from the cardback, I definitely scored the 2 coolest figures of the line. Don't you think?
Ambush Shadow came with a translucent cast, "real" cape, gun, and gun holdster. Articulation was limited to shoulders and legs. Ninja Shadow came with a whole collection of ninja weapons, a cape, and a hat. His features were a "Rapid Strike Chopping Action" and "shine through" eyes, due to a red, translucent skullcap.
The Shadow doesn't seem very popular among collectors. The toys usually don't go for much money. Even though the vehicles don't seem that easy to get hold of. Back in the 90s, The Shadow was one of these infinite short living movie lines we had back then. And just like the movie, the toys weren't a big hit either. Anyhow, they had their moments! And they sure belong to the more collectable ones, when it comes to 90s movie toylines.