[Update: Check out Hi-res Photos of the Toys!]
The Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises are not just duking it out for the title of 'superhero movie king of summer 2012' - they are also battling for the title of 'most merchandised superhero movie of 2012.' There's no better evidence of this fact than the number of toys, collectibles and sculpted statuettes from both films that are starting to be revealed on the Interwebs.
A new statuette of Iron Man's Mark VII armor from The Avengers already has fans buzzing, and we're adding fuel to the fire with some new Avengers accersories that include the iconic team Quinjet, and the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier, which serves as the mobile command center for Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and his team of secret agents.
The Dark Knight Rises comes to Toyland with some collectible figurines and busts that depict the likenesses of the film's villain, Bane (Tom Hardy), our hero Batman (Christian Bale), and of course Catwoman (Anne Hathaway), whose loyalties no one can ever be sure of.
Take a look at the new Avengers and Dark Knight Rises toys below:
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The Avengers Catalog is pretty thing to make out, but if you have any interest in seeing the full thing (it has Thor and Hulk figures, as well as more vehicles and accessories), then head over to the Red Shadows forum.
As for the TDKR figures: we've pretty much seen what we need to see of Batman and Bane at this point, thanks to the official images from the movie. But these collectibles do offer a nice opportunity get acquainted with Selena Kyle, aka, Catwoman.
Chris Nolan is working at something of a deficit as far as casting female roles in his movies. Fans weren't too pleased with either Katie Holmes or Maggie Gyllenhall as Rachel Dawes in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, respectively; they were even less pleased with Ellen Page in Inception. Ever since it was announced that Hathaway was playing Catwoman, there has been yet another surge of complaint that Nolan has (once again) cast the wrong lady.
We'll have to wait and see how Hathaway performs in her role, but this is a different interpretation of Catwoman for sure. Some people aren't pleased with the hi-tech googles that Catwoman is sporting - though the Catwoman bust (mind out of the gutter) above does reinforce the fact that we will see a more traditional mask on her face. Personally, I'm digging the spiked heels - good for scaling buildings and combatting foes - though it is hard to imagine that any girl in Catwoman's particular line of work would be wearing high heels (as many viewers are likely to echo).
The Avengers arrives in theaters on May 4, 2012
The Dark Knight Rises in theaters on July 20, 2012