Groot from the Guardians of the Galaxy movies is getting the Mr. Potato Head treatment. Part of the fun for movie fans anytime a superhero movie like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 comes out is the toy merchandising campaign that goes with it. Whether it be action figures, vehicles or role-playing items, movie toys help fans preserve the memories of their favorite characters they’ve seen on the big screen.
Toymaker Hasbro has tried to get a little more creative in about the past 20 years with its movie merchandising, combining famous characters from their classic lines – including Mr. Potato Head – with their movie licenses. One of the first spudtacular mashups was Darth Tater, who made his debut when the Star Wars prequel trilogy came out; and the popularity of the release has yielded several movie-inspired Mr. Potato Head characters since. (Mr. Potato Head from the Toy Story movies doesn’t count, because he was, well, playing himself.)
The newest release in the movie-inspired Mr. Potato Head line is Groot (or should it be Root?), who just turned up on the Disney Store online. The character is part of the Mr. Potato Head Poptaters collection (which already includes Star-Lord), and like the standard Mr. Potato Head figure, the Collector’s Edition Groot is 6 inches tall. The figure features a faux potato that can be housed in tree-like head and frame, along with arms and the googly eyes that are often associated with the Mr. Potato Head character. And like other figures in the line, the Disney Store says the Groot Potato Head “lets you mix and match parts with other Poptaters figures to create a limitless garden of funny creatures.”
The Poptaters Groot, listed at $16.95, is the latest in a wide range of toy releases from Hasbro coinciding with the release of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. In stores already are new versions of Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Yondu (Michael Rooker) and Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista) in Hasbro’s 6-inch Marvel Legends line, with new versions of Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and Rocket (voice of Bradley Cooper) with Baby Groot on the way. Fans who can’t wait for the 6-inch scale version of Baby Groot can already get a 12-inch Dancing Baby Groot from Hasbro, which dances to internal music that’s programmed into the figure, and it reacts to external music, too.
Plus, in response to writer-director James Gunn’s insistence on more female action figures from the Guardians movies, a Marvel Legends version of Nebula is on the way. Better yet, each figure in the Nebula wave includes a part build a figure of Mantis (Pom Klementieff). And fans shouldn’t worry about Kurt Russell being left out of the action figure equation. Russell’s Ego character is part of a special two-figure exclusive (along with yet another Star-Lord figure) release from Entertainment Earth.
Along with a variety of other role-playing toys including masks and blasters for both Star Lord and Rocket, Hasbro appears to have all the bases covered for Vol. 2. There are certainly enough items for fans to use to start imagining what scenarios their favorite characters will find themselves in Avengers: Infinity War and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.