'You've seen the movie, now get the...'

Super Hero movie merchandising is the name of the Blockbuster game.

It is nowhere near being a newsflash that the newly released Iron Man movie has brought with it an immense marketing campaign. I have even made references to it here on this site, mentioning the bevy of merchandise available to you if you want it.

Of course there are the toys, including a range of action figures, a 12" tall Iron Man figure that talks and makes battle sounds when you press a button. 7-11 will be promoting the film with a series of Iron Man movie slurpy cups, character straws with removable figures attached, and a red and gold plastic Iron Man helmet shaped slurpy cup! Burger King is set to promote the film to its younger market by offering Iron Man movie kids meal toys (and soon after they will switch over to the Hulk Movie and promote kids meal toys for that summer flick). If you want your cellphone to reflect your love of everything Iron Man, then that too will be possible with the release of the LG Iron Man movie themed cellphone. Oh joy! I think the one that really surprises me though is the cross marketing of the new Audi R8 sports car with the new Robert Downey Jr. film.

All of this movie marketing has made me start to think about just how much the current and upcoming Super Hero movies are being used to sell so much stuff.

Okay now, the following are just those things that I can recall off the top of my head; for each thing that I do mention, just multiply it by ten - I'm not kidding: there is so much movie- related merchandise out there being marketed by associating itself with any given movie franchise, that anything mentioned here is not even really the tip of the iceberg.

There is so much: Spiderman cereal anyone? Spiderman III pinball for kids? How about something I saw advertised in a comicbook the other day: A Spiderman fishing kit for kids complete with backpack. Oh yeah, that's right, fishing has always been a pivotal theme in the spiderman mythos. For Barbie, too, apparently, because she has her own fishing kit...

Don't get me wrong, I'm not opposed to marketing super hero movie-based merchandise - I know that the studios have to make their money back on their investments somehow and that merchandising is one of the more lucrative ways of doing that. I understand that. I have no problem with the Iron Man or Incredible Hulk sneakers, the Spiderman III tabletop pinball, Incredible Hulk Operation Game or even the Spiderman Lego sets. [ As an aside I would just like to make an observation that Lego has really been keeping busy on the licensing front: not only do they seem to have your friendly neighborhood wall crawler covered, but I seem to recall in the recent past that there have been Lego offerings of Indiana Jones and the Universla Studios movie experience. But of course the license that those makers of connecting blocks look like they have hit a real home run with has got to be that whole Star Wars thing: whenever I am in a Toys R Us or the toy department of any given store, I almost always see those Star Wars Lego Collectables on the shelves.

I have even allowed myself to be suckered into buying some of that stuff from time to time ( I just went out and bought some Iron Man movie toys the other day - just to help Marvel Entertainment recoup some of their costs, lol). I just wonder where it is all going to end?

Spiderman inflatable speakers? (Yes, they do exist and they are for sale for the discerning Spidey fan)

Where is it going to go? Are we soon going to see Iron Man movie tinfoil? Will the public demand for Hulk brand steroids finally be satiated? Will Hancock movie (Will Smith's upcoming comedy about a homeless super hero) pre-stained clothing become all the rage? Will we even get the chance to buy Batman movie brand Joker antidepressants?

Okay, maybe I went too far on that last one.

Anyway, one can only hope that the current chill over the North American economy will have the beneficial side effect of reducing the levels of the more questionable merchandising that is sure to follow the latest crop of Summer popcorn flicks. Now, if you will excuse me, I am off to try and get a ticket for the Iron Man movie and afterwards maybe go to Burger king for dinner and pick up an Iron Man trinket...

Enjoy the show.rel="nofollow"

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