Most Requested Figures:
Iron Man 2’s Happy Hogan

This week’s suggestion comes to us from reader BiParmesan (great name, btw). BiParmesan is a man after my own heart. His e-mail lamented the lack of supporting characters in today’s toy lines. Specifically, how toy companies don’t take advantage of the blockbusters to give us figures they wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to do.

Mattel gave fans the shaft on Movie Masters in many ways, but I look at the lack of a Gordon, Alfred, Lucius Fox, or even a Bruce Wayne as one of that line’s biggest disappointments. Currently, that same phenomenon is at play in one of my new favorite lines – Iron Man 2. I’ve got quite the armory going and nary a business suit among them.

‘San’s e-mail gave me some directions I could take in regards to the Iron Man 2 line being fleshed out. Sure, I could have gone for a Tony Stark figure. Or perhaps Justin Hammer or Rhodey in his dress uniform. But I’m going to quietly hope that Hasbro isn’t so clueless as to leave those out. I could have gone for Pepper of course, but that’s another ball of wax entirely. I had no choice but to go with the every man of the two films, Happy Hogan.

Iron Man is one of the handful of heroes that might be achievable under the right conditions – at least the armor he built in the cave anyway. And we might dream of being that billionaire with a hi-tech suit of armor. But, let’s face it – that’s a lot of responsibility. Given the choice between being Iron Man or Happy Hogan – best friend, bodyguard, chauffer, wouldn’t we choose Happy? Let’s assume he’s got a good salary with great benefits. And we know he gets to travel to exotic locales, fly on private jets, and gets to drive cool cars without having to pay for them. He might have to wash them, but is washing an Audi R8 a bad way to spend a Saturday? Of course not. Happy’s got it made. He just isn’t likely to get an action figure.

Why would I want a Happy Hogan? Well, he’s in one of my favorite scenes of Iron Man 2. This may be a slight spoiler, but it’s so closely related to scenes from the trailers that I’m going to forge ahead. When Whiplash attacks Tony at Monaco, he doesn’t have the Mark V Briefcase Armor handy. It’s handcuffed to Happy a few miles away. When Pepper sees Tony in trouble on the news, she looks to Happy who’s holding up the suitcase and looking at here like “uh, we gotta go”. I loved that moment. And it’s one of many fun little scenes in both films that Happy had a part in.

Plus, it’s Jon Favreau! The world is due a Jon Favreau figure! No one’s ever going to go back and give him one for D-Bob (Rudy! Rudy!), Eric the Clown, or for his sad blown-into-outer-space death in Deep Impact. I suppose he has figures in the form of G-Force’s Hurley or Clone Wars’ Pre Vizsla, but the likenesses aren’t quite there, right? No, Happy Hogan is Favreau’s best chance for figuredom. And heck, you could buy a second one to put with Daredevil and have Foggy Nelson too! Or failing that, you can always have the figure simply be Jon Favreau directing the other figures in your Iron Man display. A Jon Favreau, Director figure would get plenty of mileage here at ItsAllTrue.

So what’s standing in the way of Happy Hogan (or Tony, Rhodey, Hammer, and Pepper for that matter)? Kids? Retailer? Toy companies? The guy has a minimate already, so I don’t know if it’s just an old superstition or the proper business model for brand managers to be afraid of guys in suits not selling. Indiana Jones could have proved something, but there were just so many of the wrong ones. I kinda feel that way with Iron Man 2 a little bit. Maybe there could be one less of the three or four armors that are really piling up to give us a supporting figure or two and see how they do? Its little risk for Hasbro and their giant library of bodies in that scale. The SDCC Destro is 90% ready to stand in for Justin Hammer. The unproduced Toht figure, with a new lower jacket portion could be used for Hogan’s body requiring Hasbro just to make that one universal piece and then a head capturing the likeness.

This could easily be done. Happy could even be included in one of the upcoming 3pks or 4pks if Hasbro was worried about how he’d sell. I won’t hold my breath on Pepper – Hasbro’s still burned from the 1967 12″ Nurse no doubt, though they should get over it. GI Joe could pretend he wasn’t a doll. The nurse couldn’t. And she didn’t have any accessory sets. And she wasn’t cross-marketed with any girl’s line. And… I digress. Suffice to say, women and guys in suits not selling might be something that’s been test marketed every year and still holds up to this day, but, if it’s just old wounds, old superstitions that keep our supporting cast members from getting plastic treatment – it’s well past time for that to be over. Iron Man 2 is a hit, closing in on $300 million domestic. If Jon Favreau made $300 million for me, I’d make sure he got an action figure.

Got a suggestion for this column? Shoot us an e-mail or post it in our Most Requested section.

17 thoughts on “Most Requested Figures:
Iron Man 2’s Happy Hogan

  1. I’d be down for the Iron Man line to go beyond the armors so to speak. Seems like a waste on Hasbro’s part.

  2. Not into Happy really, but there should be a Stark figure by this point. I’d love to get one if him in the black tank with the battery showing through.

  3. Probably get more flies with this if you were asking for a Tony Stark. I still can’t believe that neither Hasbro or Toy Biz has even produced any secret identity figures.

    1. So you don’t count the removable masks to be “Tony”?
      and the early 5″ line had snap on armor, so you could have Tony in his yellow “jogging suit” (??) and then snap on the Iron Man armor.

      I think my favorite scene in IM2 was Happy in the boxing ring.
      (which reminds me, we also need 6″ movie Widow, too!)

  4. shouldn’t they automatically toss out “conventional” toy logic the minute they market these as “adult collectibles?” cuz the mistakes of the past were all committed w/ “kid’s toys.”

  5. Hasbro needs to get on the ball with this line. Holding Widow, Fury, and even the Tony and Rhodes heads until the DVD? Insane.

  6. Ummm, isn’t Happy Hogan dead? Yeah, I’m pretty sure he is and Tony killed him. Comic Happy Hogan could come in a pine box, and make for a decent zombie. Then movie Happy Hogan would be Favreu in a suit? Yay!!! πŸ™‚

  7. Mr. Favreau really seemed to like his Minimate representation. Iron Man 2 Minimates have already given us every character (Black Widow twice!) that you mentioned PLUS an army of drones to fight. We’re collecting the wrong line with Hasbro if we want anything other than a hall of armors.

    1. good point!! is there so much asa rumor that the six inch or 1/18th line are getting hammer drones?

  8. If you got a Happy figure he could also play Agent Clay from the first Hellboy. πŸ™‚

  9. looking at the pic of him running outside with the shades, he looks like Greg Grunberg. lol

    maybe Matt Parkman can stand in for him in the 6″ line? ….except Heroes was 7″ scale. drat.

    (too big to mesh with ML/DCUC, too short to mesh with JAKKS’ WWE, which is FULL of suits!)

  10. They won’t do molds for these 2nd level characters because they believe they won’t sell enough to warrant the initial costs. Someone should tell the idiot decision makers at Matel and similiar Toy manufacturers that they could do this for some if not many non-primary characters by coming up with generic molds with varitions on body, legs & arms that are interchangable that they can then pair up with heads that are unique modls. This way they could have a selection of body parts to use and worry about just doing the head mold and I bet that would be a lot cheper and less risky.

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