Was this really a big thing in the US? I remember that it was THE thing in the UK and DC and Marvel's merchandising couldnt put a dent in the armour, they had even released a new range of merchandise each year and had their own business cycle going on which I suspected wouldnt ever end, until TMNT came out of nowhere and sort of replaced them overnight.
The strange thing is that I dont remember there being much in the way of availability merchandise wise for TMNT, probably because they were an American range, availability only picked up towards the end of the TMNT business cycle when simultaneously the main line of figures got weird (Pizza Delivery Raph, Brain Surgeon Leonardo, Spaceman Donatello, I jest but you get the idea) and the market got swamped with cheap rip of merchandise (wind up games and stuff). It was headline news because during the high of their popularity you couldnt get any of the toys especially around peak demand at Christmas.
Now despite having released a new range of figures at that time, more awesome than any others prior to that, very clever for the most part and with some wicked back stories the He-Man range disappeared. They simply wherent stocked.
Does anyone remember that? Also do you think there's some sort of business cycle which reflects innovations in merchandising with comic, TV and film tie ins? Is there any way of predicting that ebb and flow or trends and have they simply been eliminated by the changes in the marketplace, ie kids wanting mobile phones or tablets or consoles instead?