Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Toy Story: Mattel "Minis" Blind Packs (NEW Series 6!!)

mattel toy story minis series 6 blind bags

SERIES 6 of the adorable Toy Story "Minis" collection is here! This new wave of blind bags started hitting stores across the US back in May, but only just began showing up at Walmarts in my area. It's about time! I was thrilled when I finally stumbled upon them yesterday. If you've been following along here with me for any amount of time, you probably know I've been an avid collector of these mini figures since they debuted in 2016 and I absolutely love the way their stylized. To catch up on any of my previous posts related to this line, you can check them out using the links below:
All caught up? OK perfect...Let's move on to checking out who's in this latest series!

mattel toy story minis series 6 blind bags

This series, as usual, includes 12 characters total (though most of them have been previously released; see them all on the back of the bag above). The only three that are NEW to this series are Chunk, Pizza Planet Alien (NEW closed eye version) and, the "Special Edition" this time around, Hawaiian Vacation Woody (based on the Toy Story Toon short film!). They're the ones I'll be taking a look at today.

Take a detailed look below, each with their blind bag code (which is printed on the back bottom right corner of each bag) to hopefully help you find them more easily.

mattel toy story minis series 6 blind bags chunk

mattel toy story minis series 6 blind bags alien

 toy story minis series 6 blind bags hawaiian vacation woody
 toy story minis series 6 blind bags hawaiian vacation woody

Once again as a reminder, these are MINI figures; like seriously mini. They stand just over an inch tall, are made of hard plastic and have very limited articulation (as in most of their heads and turn, but that's about it). Retail price for each blind pack is $2.88.

I sure wish there were more than three new characters in this series, but hey, I love who we got so I can't complain too much! The Chunk looks awesome, the alien variation is adorable and it's totally amazing to have a version of Woody based on his appearance in Hawaiian Vacation. I love his look and especially his cute removable straw hat! There's never any merch based on that short released these days, so how cool is it that Mattel included that one here!? Very similar to how they included Partysaurus Rex in the last series—keep the Toy Story Toon characters coming! I love it.

toy story minis series 6
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Well there we have it folks! If you're interested in tracking these down for yourself, be sure to check you local Walmart (again, that's where I found mine and where reports across the US are coming from). Let me know your thoughts below (I love to hear which ones are your favorites) and shout out who you'd like to see made next in this line! I'm holding out hope for Series 7 to hit soon with even MORE new characters (and, side note, I really hope Mattel did not cancel the "Minis" Pizza Planet Playset that was revealed last year).

See ya'll back here real soon!

Monday, July 30, 2018

Pixar Pier Lamplight Lounge Exclusive Coasters

Pixar Pier Lamplight Lounge Coasters

The Lamplight Lounge restaurant, which opened to the public on June 23rd at Disney California Adventure's brand new Pixar Pier, is a Pixar lover's dream location to wine and dine. I personally haven't been lucky enough to visit there quite yet, but I have heard so many rave reviews regarding the food and overall atmosphere; and from the photos and videos I've seen, I can tell the place is classy, sophisticated and oozes that signature Pixar charm. I cannot wait to go! From the subtle details for the hardcore fans, to the not so subtle, the lounge is literally covered with Pixar memorabilia, art, photos, custom furniture, filmmaker mementos, rare displayed merchandise, etc. (even a secret room).

An example of one of the lounge's most charming details can be found right on the coasters that are included for free with your beverages. And what do you know, I just happen to have a complete set of six right here for you to check out! I guess if I can't get to the Lamplight Lounge, the Lamplight Lounge comes to me, right? A huge thanks to my new buddy DisneyLand Nurse (follow him on Instagram HERE) for reaching out to me and offering to send these on over! It was extremely generous and I feel very lucky to have friends through social media who are willing to help me out so often.

Each coaster features a sketch of an iconic Pixar character alongside the artist's autograph. There is the dumpling from Bao (sketched by the film's director, Domee Shi), an otter from Finding Dory (sketched by Pixar concept artist Rona Liu), Mama Imelda from Coco (sketched by Pixar artist Daniela Strijleva), Mr. Incredible (sketched by Pixar artist/animator Tony Fucile), Carl/Russell/Dug/Kevin from Up (sketched by director Pete Docter) and a Pizza Planet alien from Toy Story (sketched by artist/voice actor Jeff Pigeon, who also voiced the squeeze toy aliens in all three Toy Story films). You can even get blank coasters to sketch in your own characters.

Pixar Pier Lamplight Lounge Coasters

On the reverse side of all the coasters, you'll notice the perfection that is the Luxo Jr. lamp and ball as well as the Lamplight Lounge logo. Minimal and classic Pixar!

This is a great little set of coasters— and the fact that they'll hand over all six to you if you ask for the full set there is amazing! Any free Disneyland/world memento is a fun treat and makes for a magical moment, but these are actually super cool, practical and display worthy (like I would have payed money for them). A must have for any Pixar mega fan/collector!

Check out THIS video (by DisneyLand Nurse's YouTube channel, "The Disney Dads") for an exclusive look inside the Lamplight Lounge and some of its yummy food! Have you picked any of these up? Be sure to let me know all your thoughts and/or any questions you might have in the comments below.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Incredibles 2: Pixar Studio Store Exclusive Baseball Cap

pixar studio store incredibles 2 logo baseball hat

This incredibly awesome Incredibles 2 inspired Pixar logo baseball cap is a Pixar Studio Store exclusive and was sent to me by my good friend and supporter, Disney freelance artist Jerrod Maruyama! As an artist who often works closely with Pixar, Jerrod is invited to the studio every now and then for research and is always kind enough to hook me up with some exclusive merch. A big thanks to him for sending this over to me as a surprise in a recent Pixar care package.
I just think it's totally brilliant how the Incredibles 2 "i" icon stands in for the "i" in Pixar. Such a clever design. I'm so lucky and grateful to have this rare item and to be able to document it on here for all you to check out! I'm a big time sucker for any minimal Pixar logo type stuff, especially when it's a Pixar Studio Store item (which, just as a reminder, is not open to the public).

This hat looks and fits great (this is coming from someone who's super picky about the hats I wear). I love it! If you have the chance the shop there at the store anytime soon, this is something I can absolutely recommend picking up. Let me know your thoughts down below! 

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

MORE Hallmark Pixar Decoupage Ornaments—Happy Christmas in July!

disney pixar hallmark target decoupage ornaments

Can you believe how fast this year is going? Today marks just FIVE MONTHS until Christmas! To celebrate "Christmas in July", I'm taking a detailed look at my updated collection of Pixar Hallmark decoupage ornaments. Though this particular style of ornament started hitting stores clear back in the fall of 2013, I only started picking them up with the release of the Finding Dory ones (which released fall 2016, see my full post on them HERE). So I've had to play a bit of catch up with a few of them!

First, a little background: these "shatterproof" stylized Christmas tree ornaments are geared specifically towards young kids and are available primarily at Target and Walmart stores during the holiday season (RIP Toys R Us...they used to be available there too). Many characters from many different properties have been made in this particular style over the years (DC, Marvel, Star Wars, Disney, Pixar, Wizard of Oz, Peanuts, Scooby-Doo, Hello Kitty, etc...) and what's nice is that they're extremely lightweight. I really love the designs and figure they'll be perfect for a separate, smaller Christmas tree in our kids' bedroom someday! Each one is about 3.5"-4" in size and retails for $7.

OK, now with this bunch, let's first let's take a closer look at the Monsters University inspired Mike and Sulley (released in 2013)— which I was lucky enough to snag on eBay last year. They're adorable! And very hard to find these days.

monsters university sulley hallmark decoupage ornamentsmonsters university mike hallmark decoupage ornaments

Next up is Buzz and Woody. These originally became available in 2015 (I believe) and have made a comeback every year since. I was so happy to see them back last year at Target and didn't hesitate to grab them up this time! I can almost guarantee they'll be back again for 2018.

toy story woody hallmark decoupage ornamentstoy story buzz hallmark decoupage ornaments

Last but not least, here we have the Cars 3 Lightning McQueen and Cruz Ramirez! These were both brand new releases last year and I was able to find them easily at Target.

cars mcqueen hallmark decoupage ornaments
cars cruz ramirez hallmark decoupage ornaments

The only ones I'm missing now are Mater from Cars, Sulley (regular Monsters Inc. version) and Joy, Sadness, Disgust & Anger from Inside Out. I still hope to track them down somehow! And who's gonna show up this year? Maybe a few re-releases? How about some Incredibles 2 characters? Can't wait to find out.

If you're looking to add any of these to your collection, be sure to check eBay and Amazon as I saw many of them on there recently. And as usual, make sure to leave any comments or questions you might have down in the comments!

Side Note- As a massive Star Wars fan, I've also been collecting all of those characters from this line. Check them out HERE and HERE as featured on my Star Wars Instagram page.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Incredibles 2: Babysitting Mode Book Review

incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review

If you've seen Incredibles 2 (I guess I should put up a SPOILER warning if you haven't yet), I'm sure you've wondered: What all went down the night that Edna babysat Jack-Jack? Well, wonder no more as you can read all about it in this Incredibles 2 inspired children's storybook—Babysitting Mode! Written by Sarah Hernandez, released on May 1st.

This is a 23 page story with loads of cute illustrations (no credit to the illustrator; just the typical "Disney Storybook Art Team") and with several fun bonus pages featuring over 30 stickers AND several card stock punch-outs (Edna Mode glasses on the first page and two Incredibles masks on the final page). This book is paperback and was not released as a hardcover.

incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review

And remember that art by Eric Tan that has been used heavily in the marketing and products for Incredibles 2? Yah, how could you forget since it shows up on just about everything. Here it is once again, this time as stickers! These designs have sure gotten good use over the last few months.

incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review

Let's take a peek inside at some of the fun pages you'll discover! This should give you an idea of the book's flavor and help you decided if you want to pick this one up for your collection.

incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review
incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review
incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review
incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review
incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review
incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review

The last two pages are additional stickers and the aforementioned punch-out super masks with instructions. 

incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review
incredibles 2 edna babysitting mode book review

This is a cute Incredibles 2 companion story with some fun Jack-Jack antics. With that said though, there isn't too much to it (nothing we really didn't see already in the movie) and is definitely geared towards younger kids (ages 3-7 perhaps). Kids in that age range will love this I'm sure and will ask to read it over and over. I think this would have been more hilarious as a short film, which I'm still hoping they end up doing for the film's Blu-Ray release (in the same vein as Jack-Jack Attack). Maybe not though since, as I said, we've already seen Jack-Jack use his powers so many times at this point that I don't think it'd be quite as fresh. That's probably why they decided to tell the story in book form. What do you think?

For young Incredibles fans, I can totally recommend this book. They'll enjoy the the simple, silly story and all the stickers and press-out extras! There's a lot here for just $4.79. Pick it up on Amazon using the link below or wherever Incredibles 2 books are sold (i.e. Barnes & Noble online HERE or in stores). Also available digitally; Nook and Kindle.

Let me know your thoughts down in the comments!

Monday, July 23, 2018

Pixar Collection: Pixar Playtime Backpack (Tokyo DisneySea 2018 Exclusive)

 Pixar Playtime Backpack Tokyo DisneySea

Ready for one of the most unique, colorful and eye-popping Pixar backpacks currently out there? This amazing limited release backpack was available exclusively at the Tokyo DisneySea park during their "Pixar Playtime" event earlier this year (which ran January 11th-March 19th; think of it as Disneyland Tokyo's version of the US Pixar Fest happening right now at Disneyland and California Adventure). These "round face" style graphics of your favorite Pixar characters were utilized all around the park during the event and all over most of the exclusive merchandise sold there.

Let's see if I can list every character featured....I spy:

Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Jessie, Pizza Planet Alien, Lightning McQueen, Mater, Cruz Ramirez, Hank, Squirt, an Otter, Nemo, Dory, Seagulls (MINE!), Mike Wazowski, Sulley, Randall, Boo, Wall·E, Eve, Joy, Sadness, Bing Bong, Miguel, Hector, Mr. Incredible, Elastigirl, Jack-Jack, Carl, Russell, Dug, Merida, Bear Triplet, Remy and, last but not least, the famed Pixar ball. Phew! 34 characters, each represented several times in the pattern. Oh, and I also have to mention the good 'ol Luxo jr. lamp right there in the Pixar Playtime logo as well! So great.

 Pixar Playtime Backpack Tokyo DisneySea

One of my favorite aspects of this pack are the Pixar/Luxo ball covered straps. A Pixar fans dream design! My other favorite detail is what the artist did with Wall·E...look at his little hand popping out holding a leaf! Subtle and cute.

 Pixar Playtime Backpack Tokyo DisneySea
 Pixar Playtime Backpack Tokyo DisneySea
 Pixar Playtime Backpack Tokyo DisneySea

The backpack's size is about 15.5" tall x 13.5" wide. There is one small zippered compartment on the front outside of the bag and then of course the main storage area (which is divided into two pockets as seen below).

 Pixar Playtime Backpack Tokyo DisneySea  Pixar Playtime Backpack Tokyo DisneySea

The original price for this there at Tokyo DisneySea was ¥4,300 ($39 US) and I paid around $75 for it on eBay (a high price I wouldn't have usually committed to, but I had Christmas money from my wife's grandmother—so that helped me justify it ;). I sure wish I was going to Pixar Fest at Disneyland soon so I could sport this there! Man am I missing out.

I totally love this backpack and hope that our US Disney parks get more unique items like this as well! Even with Toy Story Land and Pixar Pier opened (and Pixar Fest going on right now), I still haven't seen very much merch that has really stood out as "special". I'm not really a fan of generic merchandise that is essentially just cups, mugs, shirts, notebooks, etc. with just the event logo slapped on it. Now this backpack on the other hand is WAY COOL.

What do you think? If you're interested in adding this to your collection, be sure to check out current eBay listings HERE. Let me know any questions or comments you might have down in the comments! Lastly, to see the full range of exclusive Pixar Playtime merch that was available, check out this YouTube video HERE by TDR Explorer.

See ya real soon! 

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Toy Story Land Logo Pin (BoxLunch Exclusive)

toy story land boxlunch logo pin

Sorry for the delay in getting this post up! This was suppose to be up days ago but I was dealing with a flu that kept getting worse. I'm totally recovered now though, so thanks for your patience. Let's get right to it...

Just last month, a very special collaboration took place as Disney Theme Parks Merchandising and BoxLunch Gifts combined forces to release a series of official pin trading Toy Story Land grand opening commemorative pins– a "limited release" collection sold exclusively at BoxLunch! The pins hit stores first at the Altamonte, FL mall on June 23rd (hit stores nationwide shortly thereafter) and became available online just a couple weeks back on July 4th.

There are seven pins total in this series: Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Slinky, Rex, Pizza Planet Aliens, Jessie and, of course, this logo one here. See the whole collection in THIS PHOTO. Retail for each is $10.90. Two traditional Disney Parks Mickey pin backings are included.

toy story land boxlunch logo pin

Needless to say I'm sure, but these things sold out FAST. You might still have luck in stores at your local BoxLunch (I know there were a couple of the characters left at the one I went to in MD last week), but chances are slim so definitely call ahead. Check out THIS DIRECT LINK to current eBay listings if you missed them.

I wasn't planning on getting any of these pins, but I just found this logo one too cool to pass up and couldn't resist! A big thanks to my good friend, and fellow Disney/Star Wars/ Pixar fan, Jen Marie, for snagging this for me and sending it over. If you're any kind of Star Wars fan, be sure to give her a follow (blog HERE, Instagram HERE, Twitter HERE) for quality, uplifting Star Wars content (news, fashion, collectibles and more). She has an awesome community with lots of positivity towards the franchise and its future.

Lastly, and this is totally unrelated to these BoxLunch pins, but related to Toy Story Land, I wanted to spread the word about this Disney Store exclusive Toy Story Land postcard! Today (Saturday, July 21) and next Saturday (July 28th) you can get this for free by participating in the 3:00pm Toy Story Land event. It's pretty cool—and who doesn't love free Disney Store handouts? Be sure to call your local store to make sure they're participating in the event and still have these in stock.

FREE Toy Story Land Disney Store Postcard
disney store toy story land event postcard
disney store toy story land event postcard

Looking forward reading your thoughts down below! Message me with any questions or comments you might have and be sure to stay tuned for more from my Pixar collection.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Wall·E: 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set Review

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

Ready to put on your Sunday clothes? I'm so excited to share with you my detailed look at this amazing Wall·E Tsum Tsum 4-Pack, released just last month in celebration of the film's 10th anniversary! And here's the best part: Not only do we get four brand new Tsums here (Wall·E, Eve, M-O and the Cockroach friend), but they come in a soft "BnL" lunch cooler carry case WHICH PLAYS MUSIC. I can't even.

Feel for the button on the upper right hand side of the cooler and give it a squeeze to hear a cute little 20 second instrumental version of Put on Your Sunday Clothes (which of course was plucked right out of the classic musical Hello, Dolly!). It's super cute! The fabric of the carry case is also a fun shiny material, features velcro fasteners in the front and measures about 6" tall x 5 1/2" wide.

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

A very small detail I appreciate is the little Wall·E 10th Anniversary icon there on the tag. It's not a big deal, I just find it cool to see the anniversary acknowledged there. It makes this an actual commemorative item, which us collectors like.

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

Here they are peeking out! Let's take a closer look...

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

Such a cute selection! I will admit that including the cockroach here with this set was a bit random (most people will have no clue who that is from just looking at him, even in the context of Wall·E), but I'm use to it at this point. I do have to wonder though, why him over another one of the robots (BURN-E?), or John or the captain? Oh well, totally no biggie. I love the inclusion of M-O...he's one of my faves! How could you not love that hilarious little cleaner robot?

As far as Wall·E and Eve, they are different than the ones released last year in the "Best of Pixar" Tsum Tsum series. Here they both have squinty smiling expressions and Wall·E has the garbage can lid that he puts on in the film when dancing with Eve inside his bunker.

Also, a reminder that these are all part of the standard size (3 1/2'' L) Tsum Tsum "mini" collection, not micro. 

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set
Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

Disney Pixar Wall·E 10th Anniversary Mini ''Tsum Tsum'' Set

If the batteries inside the case ever run out on you, just know that it requires three AG13 button cell batteries (included). I believe they're, or at least they should be, replaceable. Retail for this set is $24.95.

This WAS available on the ShopDisney site HERE and at select locations at the Disney Parks, but it sold out real quick. Even on the ShopDisneyParks app, it's saying sold out. Sorry I wasn't able to post this in time while it was still in stock! The good news is there are plenty being sold on eBay right now and the prices aren't bad at all (right around $35). Visit THIS DIRECT LINK TO CURRENT LISTINGS if you're interested in adding this great set to your Pixar collection.

Last but certainly not least, check out my brief video below to hear this thing in action! I guarantee the ditty will get stuck in your head if it hasn't already. ;) Let me know all your thoughts in the comments below!