The Max Steel action figure has had some success since first being released back in 1999; it was the number one action figure for 2000. It is based around the animated TV series of the same name and the character has also been used for a number of movies. The TV series was made between 2000 and 2002 in the form of three seasons and a total of 35 different episodes. After the TV series there has been a number of made-for-TV movies that have continued up to the present. The show has found most success outside of the US.
Max Steel actually has two identities as he is also the extreme sports star Josh McGrath. During a fight against Cyborgs the nineteen your old was infected by microscopic nano-machines; luckily these nano-machines could be used to give him super-powers. Max Steel was born and so was the twelve inch action figure; although in the beginning there was little resemblance between the action figure and the character in the series.
Since first being released back in 1999 there has been two new waves of Max Steel action figures each year. Each of these packages comes with a newly themed Max, a couple of enemies, his vehicle and some accessories for his missions. There are also lots of other accessory packs available to buy. There is now always a crossover between the new movies and the next line of toys; if something new is in the movie chances are it will show up in the toy theme.
The 2000 line of Max Steel action figures was referred to as the Urban Siege line. The urban siege series introduced a new villain know as Vitirol; who was later recalled after September 11th because the packaging mentioned blasting urban buildings to pieces. This more or less signaled the end of the Urban Siege and it has never been released since. The next series of toys was the Endangered Species collection and this was released in 2004; this was based on the movie of the same name and signaled the addition of forms of transport and the removal of others.
Each new movie brings a new collection of accessories to buy so it is likely that so long as the films are made there will be more Max Steel action toys. In 2010 there is due to be a Max Steel motion picture released by Paramount. This is likely to cause a huge leap in interest in the toys once again and there is almost certain to be a new collection put on the market to feed this interest.
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The story of Max Steel begins when Josh McGrath is involved in an accident that which leads to his body being taken over by a swarm of nanomachines. Prior to this the nineteen year old Josh is an extreme sports star. Josh’s parents are dead and he lives with a family friend called Jefferson Smith. He has been led to believe that his guardian is a manufacturer of sports equipment; what Josh does no realize is that Jefferson Smith is actually a member of a secret agency dedicated to fighting the bad guys.
Josh McGrath would probably have never have realized his guardian’s secret if it wasn’t for his accident. This happened when he paid his uncle a visit at the factory where he worked; this manufacturing plant was actually a cover for Jefferson Smith’s secret organization. Josh picked the wrong day to visit the factory because this was also the day that a Cyborg called Psycho decided to attack it. Josh got caught up in the action he was injured and it was here that his body became invaded by little nanomachines. It looked like all was lost as Josh began to die.
Jefferson Smith was not satisfied to just let his adopted son die so with the help of his colleagues they used their technical expertise and an energy called t-juice to save the young man. Not only does this work to save Josh’s life but as an added benefit it leaves him with superpowers. Max Steel has been born and is now capable of going up against those people who tried to kill him. He has special bracelets on his body that now let him control the nanomachines that were once sent to kill him.
Josh McGrath only takes on the role of Max Steel when he needs to, but unlike other super-heroes he makes no real secret about his identity. Many people know that Josh McGrath is Max Steel; although he never really got around to telling his girlfriend. After the first series the Josh McGrath aspect of Max Steel was dropped altogether and he now spent all of his time as the Superhero – maybe the job went to his head. As time has gone on Max has found new enemies to face.
The Good Guys
The main hero in Max Steel is an orphan called Josh McGrath. This extreme sports star is only nineteen when he becomes involved in an accident that almost kills him. He was visiting his guardian at the time when the event occurred. He gets caught up in a fight and at one stage he is wounded and his body is invaded by nanomachines. The only thing to save him is a strange substance called T-juice. His life is saved and he has also developed superhuman powers because of the events he is now Max Steel.
Jefferson Smith is Josh’s guardian. He is a family friend who took Josh in after his parents were killed. Josh believes his guardian to be a manufacturer of sports equipment; he doesn’t realize that Jefferson Smith is actually a member of a secret organization called N-Tex that helps keep humanity safe. After the accident he is reluctant about allowing Josh to join the team – he worries about his safety.
Dr. Roberto Martinez is a genius who is responsible for all the technical issues of concern for the N – Tex group. He stays back at base but is able to give Max advice via computer.
Big Jim is Max Steel’s father. This is the hero character from the other famous series of action figures.
Rachel Leeds is from the UK and is a love interest of Max Steel. She also works at N-Tex. She tends to argue a lot with Max, but they like each other really. Rachel disappeared from later episodes of the series.
Laura Chen and Pete Costas are Josh Smith’s best friends. Once he became Max Steel he had less time to spend with them, and they are not mentioned in later episodes of the series.
The character Josh Smith is not mentioned in all the versions of Max Steel.
The Bad Guys
The bad guys in Max Steel are really nasty people who mostly belong to an organization called DREAD.
Psycho gets his name because of the fact that he is a psychopath who is always involved in some evil scheme or another. In the beginning of the series he almost killed Max Steel when he attacked the factory where Max was visiting. Psycho’s face is metallic, but the rest of his head looks human. He occasionally puts on a mask to make himself look a bit more presentable. He has his own army of psychodroids, but he also needs to report to his boss John Dread. Sometimes Max sarcastically refers to him as ‘Smiley’.
John Dread is the big boss of DREAD and the biggest nuisance in Max’s life. He prefers to sit in dark rooms and gets others to do his nasty-work.
Vitirol is a mindless goon who just does what he is told; he is usually under the care of Psycho. Vitirol can create green laser beams that can be deadly.
ToxZon was once a good guy and part of the N-Tex team. He hated following orders though, and this lead to him having an accident with an exploding toxic waste machine; the accident turned him into a mutant and he decided to join DREAD. ToxZon is highly dangerous because of his inside knowledge of N-Tex.
Elementor can be a slippery character. He looks like a reptile and can use special chemicals to transform himself into different natural elements like fire or water. Elementor is like the Vitirol character in that he doesn’t like to think too much; he is more of a hit first ask questions later type of guy.
Bio-Constrictor is a mix between a man and a snake. He was once injected with a special type of snake venom that turned him into this terrifying mutant. He can kill people with his highly toxic venom or can just squash them like a boa constrictor.