I think there is blame both ways on this one...I would think the stores would be absolutely SICK of getting burned by way over buying movie toys and then having to clearance them out continually. This goes way back to the first Hulk movie in recent times in which figures absolutely rotted on the pegs. There have been a few succesful movie lines outside of SW...the launch of LOTR, the first Transformers, Spider-Man and a little bit Batman. Indy, Star Trek, the Wolverine Movie, the recent Terminator etc etc etc etc etc. I think they have to start coming to the realization that a movie does not automatically translate to toy sales.
Why toy companies think they have a line that will sell as much product as they produced is also mind blowing. They have to have research saying they are either going to sell X amount or Y amount and you set your production a little above both so you can cover demand. The economy, cost of raw materials, the lead paint fiasco etc has all been atrocious as far as retail goes and that has been well documented and rehashed, it is the market research that is a head scratcher. This Joe thing though I think is a little more complex in that the Movie and Toy Company are one in the same and they maybe were looking at things through rose colored glasses...that is the only thing I can think of. I agree though that they ****** up majorly with the creative licenses they took (CC especially) which immediately soured long time fans and created this negative aura around the whole deal.