Thursday, December 13, 2018

Cars: Sarge with Cannon

pixar cars sarge with cannon

Hello Disney·Pixar Cars fans and collectors! Welcome to another Mattel 1:55 scale diecast review. It's been a while since I posted one of these, so it feels good to be documenting my Cars collection again. I have a lot to catch up on from this year (and even some from last year still, which is just crazy) so I hope to be putting these reviews up more regularly. Today I'm taking a look at a release from this past summer (which hit shelves around May/June in Case K), Sarge with Cannon!

Sarge here is a Deluxe sized vehicle from this year's "Radiator Springs" sub-series. What's interesting is that this one was actually suppose to be released clear back in 2010, but it was cancelled! Pretty neat we finally got it all these years later. What makes this diecast oversized/considered Deluxe is not Sarge himself (he's the standard size), but the addition of the cannon accessory.

As shown in the screen shot above, Sarge is seen with this "Guaranteed No Tailgaters" cannon (such a clever gag by the way) in the original Cars film during, what I call,  the"Route 66 montage" (when McQueen begins helping all the businesses out in Radiator Springs). McQueen is seen in Sarge's Surplus Hut wearing night vision goggles, a diecast which was also released years ago (full post HERE).

Cars mattel Sarge with Cannon

Sarge has an entirely new facial expression but, to be honest, this could have been done better. He looks a little confused or dumbfounded. I wish he had more of a stern expression (like the original Sarge diecast) or one that matches his face in the scene more accurately. Not a huge deal at all, just something I noticed.

Cars mattel Sarge with Cannon

The cannon gets attached to the hitch on the back of Sarge and can easily be popped on or off. It's a great accessory and looks exactly as it should. Awesome details.

Cars mattel Sarge with Cannon

You may or may not be able to still find Sarge with Cannon in your area, so definitely visit your local Walmart or Target to check if you're looking to add this one to your collection. You can also find it on Amazon using the direct link below or on eBay HERE.

Happy hunting! Let me know your thoughts down in the comments.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

A Bug's Life: Heimlich "Wobbler" (Kellogg's 2005)

disney kellogg's heimlich wobblers toys

Back in 2005-2006, Disney held an 18 month long celebration (dubbed "The Happiest Celebration on Earth") commemorating 50 YEARS of Disney Theme Parks and Resorts. During that time, everyone wanted to get in on the action. Even Kellogg's Cereal partnered up with Disney with a really fun promotion. Within each box of specially marked cereal was one Disney character inspired "Wobbler" toy! Many of you I'm sure will remember this campaign and probably have a bunch of these yourself.

There were 50 different classic Disney and Pixar characters to collect, each designed by artist Matthew Colrain (you can see them all on the ad below). As far as Pixar characters specifically though, there were 11: Buzz, Woody and an Alien from Toy Story, Heimlich (seen here) and Flik from A Bug's Life, Mike and Sulley from Monsters Inc. and Nemo, Dory, Bruce and Squirt from Finding Nemo. Each Wobbler is 3" tall, made of a hard plastic and is bottom heavy to allow them to, well, wobble. Check them out in THIS nostalgic TV commercial from 2005.

disney kellogg's heimlich wobblers toys

I don't remember ever getting any of these at the time, but I sure missed out! This one was given to me recently by one of my Disney Store managers before I left. It was a super fun and thoughtful little surprise to get! Plus I love Heimlich, he has to be one of my favorite Pixar characters.

disney kellogg's wobblers toys

I wish they would still make cereal prizes this fun! Do you remember these? Did you get any back in the day? If so, which ones? I'd love to hear your thoughts/memories down below! And if you're interested in finding any specific ones all these years later, don't worry. There's a bunch on eBay. Check out THIS DIRECT LINK to current listings! 

See you real soon for more reviews from my Pixar collection! 

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Coco: Hector & Miguel Singing Figures (Disney Store Exclusive)

One week ago today, we celebrated the one year anniversary of Pixar's Coco. I honestly can't believe it's been that long already! I meant to get this post up then, but of course with the Thanksgiving holiday last week as well, things got real busy. I'm honoring the film today with a couple of my favorite pieces of Coco merch released last year—the Hector and Miguel Singing Figures from the Disney Store! I've been meaning to do a review on these all year, so I'm really happy to finally get to it.

The Disney Store usually puts out some pretty good stuff each year, but these might be some of the best things I've seen released there in some time. There's something really special about them, like they just don't seem as mass produced as usual (even though they are). The detail on these figures, the fabric clothes, the sculpts/character likenesses, the paint, the super articulation, the overall quality...they're almost perfect! It's like these characters walked right out of the movie screen. 

Let's start with the sizes. Hector is right under 11" tall and is Miguel right under 8" tall. Both originally retailed for $29.95. Interestingly enough, once the film came out and people were clamoring for toys based on these characters, these sold out VERY fast. By January or February this year (2 months after the film was released), they were sold out online and [mostly] in stores. Around mid February, I looked them up online and realized they were already selling for over $150 together on eBay. I couldn't believe it! Luckily there was ONE Hector left at my Disney store (it's why his box here is not very mint) and ONE Miguel (which was the one they unboxed and used in the Disney Store display case; luckily they had the package and all the pieces still and let me buy it—you'll notice that Miguel is out of his box in the pictures below and that's why). Man was I lucky. I snatched those up so quickly once I realized.

disney store hector singing doll

It's strange, you never know which products will sell out quick and become super rare. Most of the time, there are seemingly endless quantities of a given item being shipped to the store. You know they'll sit around for a long time and eventually go on sale. And then sometimes (like in this case) it's one shipment and done. I assumed these would sit around for a long time, we would get a ton more and they would go to clearance after a few months (that's why it took so long for me to buy them). That obviously never happened. I'm so glad I acted when I did though. Rule of thumb: if you like it, buy it. It could be gone the next time you check and it's better to be safe then sorry. Sometimes sales never happen and then you miss out altogether.

Anyway, let's get to checking out these figures in detail! They are absolutely beautiful. 

disney store hector singing dolldisney store hector singing doll

Here's Hector out of his box. I got a three pack of Kaiser doll stands that work perfect with these (I'll link the exact ones I bought down below). While you can get him to stand up fine on his own, he's pretty precarious with all that articulation (plus how tall he is). If you're a collector getting this figure for display, I totally recommend getting a stand. Same goes for Miguel.

One thing I wanted to note before moving on is, though the packaging states these are "singing figures", the figures themselves don't actually sing. The music comes through their guitars by pressing a button. Hector's guitar play the lullaby version of "Remember Me", which is beautifully somber. His hat is removable and he can be posed in countless ways (he has more points of articulation than I can even count).

Check him out! 

disney store hector singing doll
disney store hector singing doll
disney store hector singing doll
disney store hector singing doll

Now onto Miguel, another incredibly sculpted figure. His guitar plays two songs: "The World Es Mi Familia" and "Un Poco Loco". He also comes with two interchangeable heads, his normal face and one with his land of the dead skeleton makeup.

One negative thing I have to note is that the packaging is very misleading. The box says that the guitar will play a different song depending on which head you put on Miguel's body, but the heads actually have nothing to do with it. According to the directions, it should play "The World Es Mi Familia" with his regular head on and "Un Poco Loco" with his skeleton head on. This feature does not work. The way to get the guitar to play "Un Poco Loco" ("The World Es Mi Familia" is the default song) is by placing it close to Miguel's chest on his upper left side (there must be some connection point or magnet in there somewhere). It took me a long time to figure this out.

The only other negative aspect of this figure is that his heads are REALLY hard to get on and off. Kids will definitely need help from an adult to make the swap. Other than that, it's a pretty perfect figure with every movie accurate detail you could want. The "real clothes" are pretty remarkable.

disney store miguel singing doll
disney store miguel singing doll
disney store miguel singing doll

Here he is loose! So awesome. I do wish he and Hector could hold their guitars like they're playing them, but they really can't unless you hold them in place.

disney store miguel singing doll
disney store miguel singing doll
disney store miguel singing doll
disney store miguel singing doll
disney store miguel singing doll
disney store miguel singing doll

If you're a Coco fan, I cannot recommend getting these enough if you have the chance to purchase them. They're outstanding! I'll put the Amazon links down below if you're interested, but be warned, prices for them are kind of out of control at this point. Who knew??

Let me know your thoughts in the comment section! Did you pick these up? Which one is your fave? I'd love to hear your review as well.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Finding Dory: "Fish Frame" Men's Tee (Fifth Sun)

finding dory men tee shirt

Tonight I'm taking a look at this Finding Dory inspired "Fish Frame" navy blue men's tee from Fifth Sun, featuring cute minimal style graphics of all your fave characters from the film: Destiny, Bailey, Hank, Nemo, Marlin and Dory herself are here front and center found within a Dory shaped "frame." This is a shirt I actually got last year as a gift and have been meaning to post on it since (oops!). Luckily it's still available on the Fifth Sun website HERE, so if you want to add this to your Disney/Pixar shirt collection, act soon (especially since right now it's 20% off)! Regular retail is $19.95, but you can get it right now for $15.95.

This is a cute tee that fits well and feels nice and soft (100% cotton). If you're any kind of Finding Dory/Nemo fan, I can totally recommend it! Shout out your thoughts down below.

finding dory men tee shirt

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Toy Story 4: Custom DIY "Forky"

toy story 4 custom forky

This past Monday (Nov 12), Disney·Pixar took us all by surprise by dropping the long awaited teaser trailer for Toy Story 4 without notice! While the teaser is not much more than a showcase of all our favorite classic Toy Story characters (Woody, Buzz, Jessie, Mr. & Mrs. Potato Head, Rex, Ham, an Alien and Slinky), it does introduce us to ONE brand new never before seen character...a spork turned craft project/toy named Forky! I'm not usually one to make customs (mainly because I'm just not very good at them), but as soon as I saw this character, I knew it was a DIY project I could handle.

Film Synopsis: When Bonnie introduces Forky, a handmade toy made from a spork, who has an existential crisis wanting to be spork and not a toy, Woody and the gang set off on a road trip adventure to help him understand how to be a toy. Along the way, they discover how big the world can really be for toys.

The next day I went out to Walmart (and a couple other stores) to find the perfect supplies to make Forky here. I picked up a variety pack of traditional googly eyes (which includes different sizes), some red pipe cleaner for his arms, some "wooden crafts sticks" (essentially just popsicle sticks) for his legs and a package of white Crayola Model Magic (which is basically just a lightweight, spongy, non-sticky clay–but you can honestly use real clay, Play-Doh or anything else along those lines) for his little base.

toy story 4 custom forky

As far as finding a spork, I couldn't find any after driving to several fast food restaurants (KFC, Taco Bell and Popeyes all only had black ones), Walmart and Target. Luckily I had heard many elementary schools have them in their cafeterias and my niece Kami confirmed this! She brought one home from school for me the very next day, which was so awesome of her. The prongs of the spork that I got are a little longer than what Forky has, but hey, beggars can't be choosers. Close enough. Note: I also cut some of the bottom of the spork off with scissors, since the utensil seemed a bit too long for Forky. Now he seems just the right height. 

The night I went to pick up the spork that Kami got for me, we started crafting the character right there together at my sister's house. We all had a lot of fun. My nephew Noah is already obsessed with the character and wanted to make one too! Kami, of course, also happened to have a little rainbow sticker that she found for me in her room (leave it to a nine year old girly girl, right?). Perfect for the little sticker seen on his wooden stick foot!

toy story forky

Next was the facial features (mainly the eyebrow and mouth). I wasn't sure what material the filmmakers were going for here, but I used WikiStix (wax covered, bendable sticks of yarn that adhere to surfaces on their own)— which was actually recommend to me by a follower of mine on Twitter. After I saw this older commercial for the product, featuring kids making spoon characters using WikiStix, I was sold. It ended up working out just great I think, but you could probably get a similar effect, again, by using Play-Doh or clay. I still wonder what was exactly in mind when the artist designed him.

The very last detail was adding his blushing/rosy cheeks. My wife Brita helped with that by just using some of her makeup and a Q-Tip! This worked flawlessly and she did a great job applying it.

Anyway, that's about it! I'm pretty happy with how Forky turned out. Not perfect overall (it's really hard turning an animated character into something exact in the real world), but close enough. Even since I took the photo of him above I've improved him. I made his dough base much smaller to be a bit more accurate, got wider wooden craft sticks and a better rainbow sticker. As they say, "art is never completed, only abandoned." Below is my updated Forky!

toy story 4 custom forky

Have you made a custom Forky? I'd love to see it. Share it down below if you have, as well as any additional thoughts!

Friday, November 16, 2018

Pixar Tin Wind-Up Collection (By Schylling)

pixar tin wind-ups

If you've followed along here for some time, you might know that I'm very fond of both traditional tin toys AND classic wind-up naturally, you have an instant "must have" for me as soon as you combine those elements and add Pixar to the mix. Check out this amazing collection of Pixar Tin Win-Ups created by Schylling Toys!

I actually got this full assortment last Christmas (wow–almost an entire year ago), so I don't know why it's taken me this long to do this post. Time just moves too fast! Regardless, I've been so excited to share these with you and happy that I'm finally getting around to posting my review of them. I've mentioned this before here, but ever since I was little, my parents would get me an old fashioned tin toy or two every Christmas. It became a tradition that still lives on today! Last year I picked out these to fulfill that tradition. This marked the first time I ever got any tin toys that also combined my love for Pixar. It was the perfect choice!

As of right now, there are eight detailed Pixar characters in this collection (all measuring 4" tall): Sulley (yes, they spelled his name wrong on the package), Zurg, Lotso, Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Hank/Dory, Mr. Incredible and Dash. These are all part of Schylling's "BeBots" series of high quality wind-ups (which also includes Star Wars characters and more).

The best part of these is their overall designs. The artist (whoever that is, wish I could give props here) did an outstanding job on each and every one of these. They're all stylized in such a visually appealing way. Striking, vibrant and adorable. So unique! I love 'em.

pixar tin wind-ups

Usually for my reviews, I would unbox the items and take detailed loose pictures as well. In this case though, I love the packaging (and how they're displayed in the boxes) so much, that I wanted to keep them mint for now. I'm usually one to display my items loose, but these are just too good as they are. They look fantastic atop my Pixar bookshelf! The character art on the back of the boxes (as well as the backdrop art within the boxes) is just too cool. Huge fan.

We picked these up on ShopDisney last year (not there anymore), but they're also all available on Amazon for around $12. If you're interested in adding these to your collection, you can order any or all of them below by using the affiliate links provided. I also wanted to note that there is a Limited Edition D23 Expo 2017 Exclusive 2-Pack (featuring this same Buzz and Woody) out there as well (seen HERE).

Did you purchase these (or plan to)? Which one is your favorite? I think they're all great, but I do have to say that the Hank/Dory one is probably the most cleverly designed. Let me know your thoughts down in the comments!

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Pixar Holiday Gift Wrap 2018 (From Five Below)

pixar christmas wrapping paper

If you have the dollar store called "Five Below" close by to you (a couple of them just opened near us here in CT) you might want to head there ASAP. Check out this FANTASTIC Pixar holiday gift wrap I just picked up there tonight for only $3! I love this minimalistic stylized art. In fact, these designs seem to stem from the same artist that did the graphics featured on my fave Pixar beach towel I picked up from Kolh's a couple years ago (seen HERE). Some of the characters are even exactly the same, with some great new additions thrown in as well. I wish I knew who it was! This art always seems to show up on obscure products from random stores, but heck, it's cool enough that I'd actually like a print of this hanging up on my wall honestly.

Love the colors, the Christmasy "brown paper" look and all little subtle winter/holiday touches (like the stars and snowflakes). Characters representing Pixar's first 10 films (Toy Story through Up) are all here—well except Cars. For some reason that one got excluded. I especially love the Remy and Heimlich designs, since those movies are often left out, but they ALL look amazing,

pixar christmas wrapping paper

I can't go without bringing up all the other little details that fill out the rest of the paper as well, like Wall·E's tread marks, a school of fish/coral (from Finding Nemo), a sock/door station/company icon  (from Monsters Inc.) a balloon (from Up), cheese (from Ratatouille), the bottom of Woody's boot (from Toy Story), a super hero mask (from The Incredibles) and so on. It's all just too good to be torn apart when opening gifts! ;)

If you're looking for the perfect Pixar Christmas wrapping paper, look no further than your local Five Below. Let me know your thoughts down in the comments and if you'll be picking this up this season! I might just have to go back and get another roll for next year...

Monday, November 12, 2018

Monsters University: Disney Parks "PNK" Baseball Cap

disney parks monsters university pnk hat

Inspired by the PNK (Python Nu Kappa) sorority as seen in Pixar's Monsters University, here we have this official Disney Parks exclusive baseball hat for women! This was released this past January at the parks and, along with the OK (Oozma Kappa) cap which I reviewed back in March (seen HERE). It was fun to be able to grab the Oozma one for myself and this one for my wife, so that we could wear something corresponding (which doesn't happen too often) during our trip to Disney World last month. Plan achieved!

Here are some of the magical details you can expect:
  • "PNK" plush applique (the three letters on the front are soft and fuzzy)
  • Structured front panel 
  • Mesh back panels with embroidered athletic stripes 
  • Curved  brim
  • Adjustable strap back
disney parks monsters university pnk hat

The front and bill are 100% cotton and the mesh sides and back are polyester. Since it's adjustable, it will fit most adults. My wife really liked how it felt and fit! I think it looks great as well and really captures the spirit of MU.

You don't have to be a sorority girl to get this hat, just one at heart. If you're fun, spunky and vicious (just like the Python Nu Kappa sisters), then this is the hat for you! Whether you're hitting the gym, studying on campus, competing in the scare games or vacationing at Disney, this is the perfect way to cap off a subtle Monsters University ensemble. Pick it up during your next Disney Parks trip or online HERE before it's gone! Retail is $21.99

Be sure to let me know your thoughts and any questions you might have in the comments below.

Friday, November 9, 2018

Toy Story: Funko "POP!" Rides Pizza Planet Truck Review

toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review

"Come on man, hurry up! Um like, the pizzas are gettin' cold here!"
-Pizza Planet deliver guy, Toy Story

Released just last month (October 5th) exclusively at New York Comic Con AND BoxLunch Gifts, here we have the amazing Toy Story Funko "POP!" Rides Pizza Planet Truck! As a collector and fan of Funko and just about everything and anything Pizza Planet related, this was one of those dream releases for me. Such a fun surprise that came seemingly out of nowhere! Until the official announcement was made at the end of September, I had heard no whisperings that this was even being produced. As soon as I saw the reveal though, I knew right away that I would need this for my collection.

Late in the evening on October 4th, I sat anxiously at my computer waiting for the truck to go live on the BoxLunch website (since it was to drop at midnight, making it officially released on the 5th). As it got closer to 12 AM, I began refreshing my browser until the link finally popped up (which actually happened a few minutes early around 11:55 PM). From there things were totally nuts—you know how crazy us POP! collectors are, all trying to get new releases like this at the same time. I tried clicking on the link and the homepage would freeze. I refreshed again and again. As soon as I finally got to the order page, the site would crash and I'd have to start over. For a good 10 minutes, while holding my breath (and getting quite frustrated honestly), I clicked and refreshed like a spaz until I finally completed the order (which went through around 12:11 AM, roughly 17 minutes after all this started). 

PHEW! I was so happy to receive an order confirmation a few moments later. It was sold out right about then as well, so I sure did cut it close. I knew this thing would go in a matter of minutes, so it's a good thing I didn't waste any seconds trying to snag it.

toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review

Alright now with that little story out of the way, let's check this thing out in more detail! Simply put, I love it. The box is clean and vibrant (pretty standard Funko Rides style box, but real sweet looking nonetheless) with a nice large window showing off the vinyl vehicle itself. A sticker on the front of the package denotes that this is a "Funko 2018 Fall Convention Exclusive Limited Edition" (also number 52 in the Funko Rides line).

toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review
toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review

The original retail price was $40.00 (plus $4.99 shipping). In my opinion, that was WAY too steep (it should have been a $19.99 price point at most), but I was willing to pay whatever I needed to for this beauty. I knew if I didn't pay that, I would only have to pay scalpers even more on eBay.

toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review

Here it is unboxed and in all its glory! So iconic. Everything here looks fantastic. It's lightweight yet feels solid, has a perfect paint app (great little mud splat touches and weathering) and has all the details you'd expect from the Pizza Planet Truck (including the signature rocket on top, the YO on the back and the film accurate RES1536 license plate). The creators at Funko certainly get points for their attention to detail and their flawless stylization.

toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review

The best detail though, no doubt, is the TINY Funko "POP!" Buzz Lightyear (about inch tall) in the truck attached to the steering wheel (inspired by when the toys drive the truck to the airport in Toy Story 2)! So adorable. I can't even.

It should be noted that there are no opening doors/windows (so no, tiny Buzz cannot be removed) and no rolling wheels. This is mainly a display piece for older collectors.

toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review

Take a look at some of the other angles below! Measurements are about 7.5" long x 4.5" wide x 5" tall. 

toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review
toy story funko rides pizza planet truck review
toy story funko rides pizza planet truck reviewtoy story funko rides pizza planet truck review

Luckily prices on eBay have not completely sky rocketed (currently selling around $50-$60), so be sure to snag one on there if you missed it from NYCC or BoxLunch. You can check out THIS DIRECT LINK to current listings if you're interested. I can't recommend this enough for all you Toy Story fans/collectors out there!

Did you pick this up for your collection? Were you able to snag one the night of release before they sold out? Or perhaps you bought it in store at BoxLunch or at NYCC? Let me know your thoughts and success story down in the comments below!