Action Figures – The Top Six Themes For Collectibles

Kids can play with action figures for countless hours, recreating the worlds and adventures of their heroes. Yet children are blissfully unaware that action figures hold enormous appeal for adults as well. Whether to recapture carefree childhood memories or to make a calculated investment on action figures' increasing value over time, adults are just as enthralled with these collectibles as kids.

If your action figures have been packed away for years, you might not be aware of what's currently popular. Here's a rundown of the top six.

Avatar: Avatar may not have won the Best Picture award, but it has captured the hearts and minds of moviegoers around the globe. Understandably, the highest grossing motion picture of all time has spawned a wide variety Avatar movie toys, as well as books, music, and video games.

Star Wars: Star Wars action figures have been beloved since the original movie was released in 1977. Today, a whole new generation is drawn into the world of Darth Vader, Han Solo, Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker, and the gang.

Harry Potter: Although J.K. Rowling has completed the Harry Potter series of books, two final movies are on the horizon. While the books engendered a love of reading in young people, Harry Potter memorabilia appeals to Muggles of all ages who adore Hogwarts, despise Voldemort, and root for the Weasleys.

Marvel Legends: Many would argue that Marvel Comics stands apart for its creativity and longevity in bringing us superheroes like Spiderman and Captain America. Characters from the comics have become collectible action figures and taken center stage in movies and video games.

Transformers: Transformers toys were launched in the 1980s, but are enjoying a second life thanks to the wildly successful movies of the same name. Among collectibles, Transformers toys have catapulted in value over a relatively short time frame. Still fun to play with, they're also a wonderful investment.

DC Universe: Like Marvel, DC Comics paved the way for superheroes, including those with staying power like Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. The entire DC universe is fascinating, and has taken children and adults alike on countless adventures where the good guy (or girl) triumphs over evil.

In addition to the six themes discussed here, there are several others that are popular as toys and collectibles. McFarlane figures are highly detailed and feature characters from video games, movies and comics. Sports legends' memorabilia also has staying power, as do figures of music legends.

Whether you're buying for a toy for the child in your life, your own inner child, or an investment, it pays to listen to the experts. There are online resources that not only hook you up with extraordinary deals on action figures and memorabilia, but that also provide information and books on the back stories of these beloved characters. They typically also have rare action figures, guides about the value of your collection, and even video games featuring your favorites. Best of all, they often have the best deals on single figures or sets, and sometimes even offer exclusives that you can't find anywhere else.