Here’s a fun one that’ll get the old nostalgia pumping. DC has announced a series of eight variant covers based on the iconic Super Powers Collection of action figures from Kenner. The variant covers, featuring ‘card art’ by Alex Saviuk and figure designs by Jason Geyer, imagine what figures like Nightwing, Power Girl, Green Lantern John Stewart, shirtless Batman, and more would have looked like had they been produced by Kenner in the mid-’80s.

From DC:

In August, eight new “DC Super Powers” comic book variant covers will imagine what an unreleased wave of DC action figures would have looked like if the Kenner line of Super Powers toys from 1984-86 had continued!* Look for DC Super Powers variant covers on Batman #151, Gotham City Sirens #1, Green Lantern: War Journal #12, Nightwing #117, Power Girl #12, Superman #17, The Flash #12, and Titans #14! Reach out to your local comic book shop for preorder information and snag yourself one of these DC Super Powers variant covers!

Each variant cover is a wraparound, with the front cover featuring what the front of the carded figure would have looked like, and the back cover showing the imagined back of the carded figure, including file cards for the character and a look at the other figures – and a few vehicles and a playset – in the imagined series.

For a generation of DC Comics fans, the Super Powers Collection of action figures from Kenner is the definitive DC toy line. Based on a combination of style guide designs by José Luis García-López and new character designs by artists like George Pérez and Jack Kirby, each of the 34 figures in the original three-wave line sported a special “Power Action,” typically activated by squeezing of the figure’s legs or arms. The 23 figures in the first two waves of the series also included 16-page minicomics, many of which were drawn by Saviuk.

The variant covers’ other artist, Jason Geyer, is no stranger to the Super Powers Collection. The cofounder of Raving Toy Maniac and Action Figure Insider and an essay contributor to the recent Fourth World Omnibus Volume 2, Geyer’s Super Powers Archive is still one of the leading sources for info on the toyline on the internet, and is responsible for bringing to the public most of what is known about both the initial pitch and scrapped later waves of the series (and, full disclosure, some of my earliest writing on the internet was for the blog section of the SP Archive). As a toy designer Geyer has also helped bring Super Powers-style figures of indie comics characters like The Tick and Grendel into existence with the Longbox Heroes Collection, sculpted by Geyer and produced by Fresh Monkey Fiction. Geyer is also a prolific toy customizer, and you can see dozens of digital Super Powers sculpts on his Instagram feed.

These variant covers from DC aren’t the first time a comics publisher has imagined new entries in a beloved ’80s action figure toyline. Marvel produced a series of variant covers by artist John Tyler Christopher based on the Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars toyline from Mattel, and they have followed suit with Kenner Star Wars figure variant covers also by Christopher. 

Check out the rest of these amazing Super Powers Collection variant covers below, and look for them to arrive in stores in August.

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