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Captain Action: The Original Super-Hero Action Figure Hardcover – August 25, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: TwoMorrows Publishing; 2 Revised edition (August 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1605490172
  • ISBN-13: 978-1605490175
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.5 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,052,269 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

MICHAEL EURY has worn as many professional hats as Captain Action has masks, having worked as a comic book editor and author, public-relations spokesperson, singing-telegrams messenger, teacher, comedy actor, TV cameraman, band director, and jazz trombonist. Captain Action: The Original Super-Hero Action Figure is the first book he has written, although he's edited a few and read even more.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Fish on September 26, 2011
Verified Purchase
As a fan of the toy line that Ideal introduced in the mid 60s I was excited to read this book to get some insight into a line that was slightly before my time. While it's beautifully designed with hundreds of color photos, merchandising materials, behind the scenes order forms and the like-- it lacks any real depth of discussion about the line-- outside of the development of CAPTAIN ACTION himself. When it comes to the characters whose identity he can assume, the author chooses to give us an overall history of each character rather than discuss why such and such a character was ever chosen for the line or get into some of the bizarre choices that were made with each character--

For example-- why is Krypto the Superdog an accessory for Superman when that was a character than was tied to Superboy. Why give Batman a drill in his utility belt? Why no gloves on any of the main characters? Were there other characters considered for the line? Steve Canyon and Sgt Fury seem obscure characters-were they chosen because of their military ties so the line could compete better with GI JOE?

The author mentions that the Spider on The Spider-Man's chest is not his normal logo-- but doesn't question why he's wearing a belt, or why Aquaman needs swim fins?

One of the charms of the Captain Action line is it's slightly dopey choices-- putting Flash Gordon in an outfit that looks nothing like he's ever been in through all of his film and comic strip appearances might have been to cash in on the space craze, but I'd like to have heard his expert opinion.

Instead, you get a very light read if you're familiar with most of these characters as their bios are readily available in multiple sources.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tim Janson HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 31, 2010
Among the old photos I have is a black & white picture from the 1960s. It's Christmas morning and my older brother is proudly holding up the new Captain Action set he just received from Santa...err...mom and dad. Captain Action was one of the great toys of the 1960s and history of the toy line is related in this fantastic book, filled with outstanding photography, and written by comic book historian Michael Eury.

Ideal was one of the iconic toy companies of particularly the 1950s through the 1970s. In an effort to compete with Hasbro's GH.I. Joe, Ideal created Captain Action in 1966. Like G.I. Joe Captain Action was an articulated, 12" action figure but it had one thing that made it unique to G.I. Joe and that was Captain Action could become anyone of a number of different comic book characters. Through the issue of uniform sets, complete with alternate heads, Captain Action could become Superman, Batman, Aquaman, Captain America, The Lone Ranger, Sgt. Fury, Spider-Man, and more.

Eury traces the evolution of the development of the toy through vintage Idea; documents from the 1960s and interviews with various toy executives including creator Stan Weston, who also created the initial concept of G.I. Joe. Weston provides insight on went what right and what went wrong for the toy. The highlight of the book is Eury;s look at all of the different Captain Action uniform/alter identity sets which include a history of each character, the accessories that came included, uniform variations, and common defects with each set. Thus the book not only works as a detailed history of the figure, but also a tremendously useful guide to toy collectors who will value the information about the accessories and variations.

The book also has chapters on Captain Action's arch-enemy Dr. Evil, the various female action figures introduced, accessories and vehicles, and fan-created custom outfits. A ton of fun and a classic toy!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mike Suchcicki on October 7, 2012
Do you have any friends or relatives who see the intensity of your fandom and encourage you to "get a life"? Well, having this highly detailed documentary book on your shelf is going to provide them with more-than-adequate ammunition for their argument. But let's be honest: Who cares what they think? This is a wonderful book and a must-have for any fans of the original Captain Action action figure.

I am 56, and I can say, without hesitation, that Captain Action was my favorite toy from my childhood (although the 007 Attaché Case and Major Matt Mason ran a close second and third). Right now I even have a veritable Captain Action shrine in my office. I won't go into detail why Captain Action is my favorite or meant so much to me as a kid. Besides, Eury covers all that in this book. I can't imagine a CA fan reading the descriptions in the book and not saying to themselves, "Yeah, that's absolutely right."

There is a LOT of detail on the history and production of the Captain Action figure in this book, all heavily illustrated and annotated. Photos of box covers and internal packaging and reproductions of ads and catalog pages. In other words, it's a gold mine for CA fans and nostalgia buffs. (It might even bring a tear or two to your eye.) Thanks, Mr. Eury, for your loving preparation of this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A. Egawa on December 19, 2009
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I received my Captain Action book from Amazon and I sure do love this book. It's nice to be able to see all the variations that came out in the 60's and also to see the reproductions as well. I was only 3 when this doll came out so I do have the reproductions and I think they are very cool. I hope the new company and also castaway toys makes much more of these figures in the days to come! Get this book if you are a Captain Action fan it's worth every penny! Aaron Egawa
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