July 30, 2013 1:14pm PT by Graeme McMillan
Hasbro Sued Over Comic-Con Exclusive Transformers Toy
It's the clash of titans that nerds from the 1980s dreamed of, only the reality of Robotech vs. The Transformers is far less exciting, and just a little bit sadder, than the fanboy crossover mentality might originally have hoped.
The real-life conflict stems from the exclusive GI Joe vs. Transformers toy package Hasbro sold at this year's San Diego Comic-Con, and specifically, the "Jetfire" Transformer it contained. The problem is that that Jetfire was a re-creation of Hasbro's original Jetfire release back in 1984, which itself was licensed from the Macross VF-1 Valkyrie toy manufactured by Japanese toy company Tatsunako -- and that Hasbro may no longer hold the license for that particular form.
The overall Macross license for the United States (as well as other markets outside of Japan) is owned by another company called Harmony Gold, which has launched legal action against Hasbro over the Comic-Con toy, claiming that it has caused -- and continues to cause -- damage to the company. In its lawsuit, Harmony Gold asks for an injunction against any further sale, as well as all remaining inventory, the recall of any Jetfire toys in the marketplace and any profits Hasbro made from the sale of the toy in addition to other, unspecified damages.
Hasbro has yet to respond to the lawsuit. We can but hope that its legal team issues a statement explaining that there is more than meets the eye to this situation.