This section presents action figures, a favorite toy of boys since the 1950's when the original action figure, G.I. Joe, was released to the public. From the original 3-3/4" Star Wars figures to the relatively gigantic Shogun Warriors, this is a toy that has more than overcome the original misgivings that parents may have had about their boys playing with 'dolls.'
The most popular action figures, as can be expected, are based around superheroes and TV-movie action characters. Some (like Mattel's Big Jim) are entirely new creations, sold to boys through ads in comic books and on television.
Although initially a violence-oriented toy, not all action figures emphasize that aspect. The best example of this is the original action figure, G.I. Joe, which started out as a Cold War era soldier but, after Vietnam, became a search-and-rescue figure with the Adventure Team line. Of course, G.I. Joe would become popular again during the Reagan era as 3-3/4" figures in the A Real American Hero series.
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