Monday, December 27, 2021

Monsters, Inc. Hallmark Mike & Sulley Decoupage Ornaments 2021

Well hey there everyone! Long time, no see. I'm thrilled to be back here on the blog for a quick, festive post and to say I hope you all had a magical and wonderful Christmas. Today I'm taking a look at the two new 2021 Pixar Hallmark decoupage Christmas tree ornaments released last month—Mike and Sulley from Monsters, Inc. in celebration of the film's 20th anniversary this year! 

If you're not familiar, this line of adorably stylized "shatterproof" decoupage ornaments for kids began around 2013 (possibly even before that) and has expanded with loads of fun new characters every year since. I seriously always look forward to seeing who gets made! Many films/shows/franchises are represented in the line—from Disney to Pixar to Marvel to Star Wars and SO many more—and I've been collecting my favorite Pixar and Star Wars characters since 2016 (with the release of the Finding Dory ones). If you've ever been to Target during the holidays over the last eight years or so, then I'm sure you've seen ornaments from this line and already know exactly what I'm talking about here. I've also spotted some at Walmart, Five Below and probably some other stores over the years as well, but they're certainly the most prevalent and consistent at Target every holiday season.

I was thrilled to see classic Mike and Sulley get made this year since, before now, only Mike and Sulley in their Monsters University clothes were made (see post HERE). Now that I think about it, I do believe a traditional looking Sulley was made at some point, but I couldn't find any pics or info on it. If one was made years ago, it was before I started collecting these so I'm not sure if this 2021 Sulley here is brand new or a re-release of that one. If you have any information on it, be sure to let me know!

All in all, these look so great. I'm so happy to have this classic duo as part of this collection! I would have also loved to see a character or two from Luca made in this style this year as well (like Luca and Alberto as sea monsters), but oh well. Maybe we'll see them get made at some point down the road. I'd also love to see Wall·E and Eve! 

Anyway, I've been collecting these ornaments all these years for the sole purpose of giving them to my son one day to put on his own Christmas tree and this year it finally happened. Aidan is now two years old, so I thought it would be the perfect time for them to make their official debut—and I was right! We gave them to Aidan on a tree for his second birthday earlier this month and it was so incredibly gratifying to see them get used for real after all this time and to see how much Aidan absolutely loves them. He thinks it's so magical having his own tree in his room with all his favorite characters!

To see the rest of the Pixar characters I've collected in this line since 2016, be sure check them all out HERE. Who's your favorite so far and who would you like to see get made in the future?

Saturday, October 23, 2021

Pixar Ball Tsum Tsum (Japan Exclusive—Reversable Characters)

Hey everyone! I'm really happy to have the chance to do a little blog post here for the first time in a while. I sure miss it, but as you may know I have shifted focus to video reviews on my YouTube channel for the time being; so head there for the newest content from me. My Pixar toy reviews are still happening weekly! 

So though the Disney Tsum Tsums line may have ended here in the US, there are still plenty of releases still hitting internationally at Japan Disney Stores (where Tsum Tsums began in the first place). Last October (yah I'm a little late here—I've been meaning to get to this review for a while), a new Pixar series was released and, although it was mostly made up of characters we've already gotten in Tsum form, there was a new twist—they're reversable! And what do they change into you may ask? Well that's the best part: a Pixar ball. 

So since I basically have all these characters (I'm still on the hunt for Merida from Brave though since she's only ever been released in this set), I only needed one so I can display it with my Tsum Tsum collection as a Pixar ball. I ended up buying Mike, but again, it ultimately didn't really matter to me who I picked up since it would be displayed as the Pixar/Luxo ball. 

Below are the official Disney Store photos so you can see who's all included in the full assortment and how the reversible feature works.

I'm so happy to have this one—it's a Tsum Tsum I never knew I needed! Nothing really screams Pixar to me more than the Pixar ball. I ended up finding the perfect spot for it within my Tsum Tsum display and it could not be a more perfect final touch.

What are your thoughts? I feel this is certainly a lesser known piece, so I'm happy to be able to spread the word here. If you're interested in grabbing one for your collection, I'd check out current eBay listings HERE.

Saturday, October 2, 2021

Monsters, Inc. Bamboo Fibre Kids Halloween Themed Mealtime Set

Happy October everyone! Can you believe it's that time of year again? To celebrate, I just wanted to quickly share this festive Halloween themed Disney·Pixar Monsters, Inc. inspired Bamboo Fibre Kids Mealtime set I picked up at Marshall's like five or so years ago! I got it for my (then future) little one to enjoy one day and now that time has already come. My son Aidan is almost two years old now, so he's the perfect age for this as he now eats off plates/bowls and can use utensils! Plus he loves Monsters, Inc. AND Halloween, so this is a huge win. 

My wife Brita and I included this in Aidan's "October 1st package" yesterday (a tradition we started where he gets some Halloween presents on the first to enjoy throughout the month), as you can see in the photo down below. So yah, again, this was a long time coming and it's so fun for me that I finally got to share it! I originally purchased this set for $9.99 at Marshall's and I'm so glad I did since I've never seen it return.

Here it is out the packaging so you can see it in better detail! Really cute designs I'd say.

Just as a heads up, someone on Instagram did comment that they had a mealtime set like and the cup broke really easily after it was dropped. I personally haven't had that experience (*gulps*...yet), but I just wanted to let you all know that this could be considered kind of fragile since it's made from bamboo fibre. It IS dishwasher safe but NOT microwave safe.

As mentioned, here's Aidan coming into the room seeing all this Halloween magic for the first time! His reaction was everything we hoped and he was so excited about it all.

Well that's all I have for you today! I just wanted to make sure to document this one here as part of our collection and share it with anyone who might be interested in tracking it down these days. I'd check to see if any are being sold on Amazon and/or eBay.

Let me know your thoughts down below and any questions you might have. Enjoy your spooky season!

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

2021 Mattel Pixar Alien Remix Woody & Buzz In Claw Machine Playset REVIEW

Hey everyone! Sorry things have been so quiet here on the blog. I've been putting all my focus and time into my YouTube channel so that I might be able to grow my audience there a bit, so that has meant putting my blog post reviews on the back burner for a while. If only there were more hours in the day! You can still find all the latest and greatest Pixar merch reviews there on my channel in the meantime while I catch up on some of my written reviews here. One of the newer items I've wanted to document here to get my blog posts rolling again is this brand new (yet to be released) 2021 Woody & Buzz in Claw Machine playset from Mattel as part of their ever expanding Pixar Alien Remix collection! A huge thanks to Mattel for sending this my way to review ahead of it's release. I am eternally grateful!

This set (the second Alien Remix playset following the Up/Dug Days inspired Carl & Dug's new home) includes unique NEW variants of Buzz and Woody and, as such, they’re given new numbers (number 42 and 43). And though it’s not specified, and it technically doesn’t matter too much, I’m guessing Woody is number 42 and Buzz is 43. And then obviously the main attraction here is the playset/display piece which is inspired by the iconic crane game design from the original Toy Story as seen in Pizza Planet and even has a rotating claw feature! And shout-out to the packaging team there at Mattel once again since the box and whole presentation here is awesome and really eye catching. Mattel has really been knocking their packaging designs out of the park (see it in more detail in my You Tube review).

So yah, at first glance, these two figures look almost identical to the original Mattel Buzz and Woody REMIX figures from last year, however their facial expressions are slightly different. Other than that though, they do utilize the same basic sculpts as last year’s figures so there aren’t many other differences at all. I do show a comparison in my video review if you're interested in seeing the differences for yourself. 

And now to touch on the most exciting piece in this set, the Pizza Planet Claw Machine itself. Now again, I’ve been calling these "playsets", but really when it comes down to it it’s just a really cool display base/ backdrop. There is that one tiny little feature I mentioned with the claw where you can kind of move it all around and spin it manually (no button to make it spin on its own or anything), but yah I think something like this and the Up house set are geared more toward older kids and collectors who will be more into displaying their remix figures rather than playing with them. Since I am in the collector/displayer category, I just really dig the look of this overall. It’s nothing fancy or too detailed or anything like that, but the iconic design is nicely captured here and I love how it looks on display with all the other Remix figures. These sets do really add a fun new element to the line.
All in all, I'd say even if you’re a Toy Story fan who hasn’t necessarily gotten into collecting all of the Pixar Alien Remix figures, I think any Toy Story collector could just get this set here and appreciate it in their collection given that it captures the classic scene in a fun, fresh and unique way. I still haven’t spotted this at the stores yet, but I do know it will be arriving at Walmart very soon and will retail for the same price as the Up set (which would be around $19.99).

Like usual I’m really excited to hear your thoughts, so go ahead and sound them off in the chat below. You know I love when we can get a conversation going! Have you enjoyed collecting Mattel's Pixar Alien Remix line? What other Pixar inspired "playsets" like this one here would you like to see get made? Be sure to let me know and any other comments/questions you might have.

Follow me on Instagram @danthepixarfan

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

BREAKING Mattel Pixar Toy News— "Pixar Featured Favorites" Action Figures & More!

Breaking news! Check out this brand new series, as part of Mattel’s Pixar 7” scale action figure collection, called PIXAR FEATURED FAVORITES—coming soon! These are everything I’ve been hoping for from Mattel: Ratatouille, Up, and Finding Nemo figures plus more (Inside Out, Monsters, Inc., A Bug's Life, etc.)... and then they went ahead and took things to the next level by making them part of a more premium assortment and added all sorts of cool accessories and features! These are seriously a dream come true. It seems as though this series, quality-wise, falls somewhere in between the standard 7" figures and Mattel's Spotlight Series as each set will retail for $19.99. I also included some new/upcoming Mattel Pixar plush down below as well, so enjoy! 
Be sure to check out both of my YouTube videos below for my full thoughts on these and the other Mattel reveals I shared earlier in the week. Who else would you like to get featured as a favorite?! 

Pixar Featured Favorites

Pixar Plush


Saturday, August 14, 2021

Toy Story 3 Stretch—Mattel 7" Scale Pixar Action Figure Collection

Hey everyone—hope you all are having a fantastic weekend! Today I’m finally getting around to reviewing the brand new 2021 Toy Story inspired Stretch figure here on the blog—once again as part of Mattel’s continuously expanding Pixar/Toy Story 7” scale action figure collection. Stretch of course is from Toy Story 3 and is the octopus toy at Sunnyside Daycare who ends up being one of Lotso’s main Henchmen.

Mattel did release a similar figure of her back in 2010 when the film hit theaters, but this one here is an entirely new sculpt with a happier facial expression and is overall [slightly] larger in scale. Of course this Stretch figure is still not a movie accurate size (it’s still way too small), but it was created to be in scale with the rest of Mattel’s 7” action figures and was never intended to be a full scale replica. Stretch is one of those characters though that we still haven’t gotten in full scale after all these years for whatever reason, so this was kind of a tease for us collectors. It is technically the biggest Stretch officially released though, so if you’re a full scale collector, this might be your best option to fill the gap in your collection while we still wait patiently crossing our fingers (you can see my comparison of this Stretch with the full scale Thinkway Toys Sunnyside characters in my video review below). 

So all in all here, let me tell you, this figure looks OUSTANDING if you couldn't already tell. Mattel completely crushed it here, no question. I love that she's a translucent plastic just like in the film (which is like a softer more rubbery material) and has all that sparkly movie accurate glitter embedded. 

As far as articulation, she doesn’t really have any (I know the head does look like it can be rotated, but it actually doesn’t turn at all). There IS however a bit of posablity in the tentacles though since four out of the eight tentacles actually have wires in them so that you can bend them in different positions. This is a fun feature for play, display or even toy photography/stop motion video if you’re into that. The other four tentacles, so every other one, can’t be posed at all—they have no wiring—so they just flop downward when you bend them.

When standing normally, Stretch is about 6.5” tall, but when you position her tentacles to be completely upright she’s closer to around 7.5” tall. If you compare her to the rest of Mattel’s 7” action figure collection though, she’s in perfect scale. Speaking of, Mattel is also releasing a 7” scale Chunk action figure later this year, so look for that in the coming months in addition to another really exciting 7” scale release, Mr. Pricklepants.

Well everyone that’s all I have for you today, this toy gets a 10/10 from me. You can find Stretch right now at Target here in the US for $9.99 even though she is a bit harder to find currently. You can pick this figure up on eBay as well if you're not having any luck. Be sure to let me know all your thoughts down in the comments and I will catch you again right here soon in my next blog post! 

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Disney·Pixar Luca— Now on Blu-Ray, 4K & DVD!

Hey everyone! Sorry things have been a bit quiet here on the blog. I've been putting all my efforts into growing my YouTube channel and other social media platforms, so that means I've had to cut back here a little bit. Don't worry, all the items in my latest video reviews will also get a traditional blog post right here as well (I have many drafts saved), it's just that there aren't enough hours in the day! Stay tuned though, I have not stopped blogging and things will hopefully be back to more regular posts here again soon. In the meantime, be sure to check out my Instagram and YouTube channel for all the latest items in my collection. 

Tonight I just wanted to post a quick reminder (if you missed it) that Luca is now on Blu-Ray/DVD/4K and Digital as of last Tuesday (August 3rd)! I won't be doing a full review this time due to time restraints, but I definitely wanted to let you know it's available to purchase and document it here as part of my Pixar collection. I know it's a little anticlimactic (since it's been available on Disney+ for months now), but I always get Pixar film hard copies—I'm traditional like that! Plus I can't pass up all the bonus content that comes with the discs that isn't included on Disney+. Who else is the same way?

Let me know your comments down below and I'll see you right here again real soon!

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Disney·Pixar 2021 Luca McDonald's Happy Meal Toys—Complete Set of 8! REVIEW

Hey all! Welcome back to the blog. A few weeks ago I uploaded my video review of last month's Disney·Pixar Luca McDonald's Happy Meal toys and have been meaning to get blog post up here as well. Tonight I'm finally getting to it! This is a pretty awesome and (surprisingly quality) set of toys for being Happy Meal toys and there's a lot of play value here. I've seen it first hand since my 19 month old son (who loves Luca) absolutely loves these and plays with them in the bath, pool and around the house every single day! They're hard plastic, so they're sturdy and resilient when played with and are a nice, decently big size perfect for toddler hands. Some pretty impressive sculpts to boot (again, for McDonald's toys).

The characters available in this collection are: #1 Luca (Sea Monster), #2 Monalisa, #3 Alberto (Human/Sea Monster Color Change), #4 Giulia Marcovaldo, #5 Alberto (Sea Monster), #6 Machiavelli. #7 Luca (Human/Sea Monster Color Change) and #8 Massimo Marcovaldo. I love the variety of characters here, especially the inclusion of Monalisa. The best part is they're all some kind of water toy, each with a fun little gimmick (which I demonstrate in my video below).

A huge thanks to "ScottsTikiRoom" on Instagram for reaching out to me and hooking me up with this full set! That was extremely kind and generous and we appreciate it so much.

And here's my video showing off all the action! Each toy falls under the category of either wind-up swimmer, water squirter or color changer. 

Even though the Luca toys are no longer available at McDonald's, you can still track them down on eBay (direct link HERE) as there are plenty of current listings. If your little one loves Luca (or even if you're an older collector), I can highly recommend these. I'm not usually one to collect many Pixar Happy Meal toys, but since there really aren't many Luca toys out there in general (and these are so different compared to any others considering the water play aspect), these were a welcome addition to my collection.

Let me know your thoughts below! Did you pick any of these up?

Friday, July 23, 2021

Disney·Pixar Toy Story 2021 Hallmark Keepsake Army Men Recon Plan Charlie Ornament—with SOUNDS!

Ho ho ho! Merry Christmas in July, everyone. Tonight I’m taking a closer look at the brand new 2021 Magic Sound "Recon Plan Charlie" ornament inspired by the classic army man birthday party reconnaissance scene in the original Toy Story. This was released just a couple weeks back—on July 10th to be exact—as part of Hallmark’s Keepsake collection.

Like a lot of you I'm sure, I look forward to Hallmark’s yearly Keepsake ornaments release every July (and then again in the fall) mainly to see what new Disney/Pixar ones get made. Even though my wife and I don’t really put many (if any) Pixar ornaments on our actual Christmas tree (as I've mentioned here before), there are some like this one here that are SO cool that I can’t resist getting them even if it’s just used as a display piece on one of my Pixar shelves. And what’s really fun for me is that Hallmark’s keepsake release always seems to happen when we visit my in-laws in Maryland every July and, since they have a hallmark right down the street from them, I’ve made it a tradition to pop over there to document all the new Disney Pixar ornaments in person and snag a fave or two. And that's exactly where I picked this one up! Good memories.

The ornament is all plastic and, while the green army men are pretty much perfect and look just as they do in Toy Story, you probably already noticed that the baby monitor itself is only INSPIRED by the one seen in the film and isn’t completely accurate (due to rights issues with Playskool, I’m sure). It’s like the Hallmark team was tasked to come up with a generic design that captures the overall vibe of the monitor seen in Toy Story without totally replicating it and I think they did a really good job. I honestly didn’t even notice right away and then I was like...wait a second. The main differences are this monitor doesn’t have the gray speaker area, the little red right is on the opposite side, there’s no blue tip on the antenna, the blue power on-dial has been replaced by grey button and obviously it doesn’t have the Playskool logo.

Now for the best part—press the grey button on the side to hear the sounds! There are five phrases from Sarge, who's audio is taken directly from Toy Story (hear it all in my YouTube video below). The ornament requires two LR44 button cell batteries, which are included but not installed.

As far as size, the baby monitor itself measures 5” tall (that’s including the antenna), the crouching army man is about 2” tall and the standing one is close to 3” tall. So yah, even though the army men are basically movie scale (or even bigger), don’t expect the monitor to be movie scale cause it’s definitely not even close. This is a relatively small ornament. Overall the sculpt is awesome for what it is as it really captures the moment, the sounds are fantastic and I highly recommend picking this up for your Christmas tree or as a display piece for your Toy Story shelf. 

Retail price is $19.99. You can pick this up at your nearest Hallmark store or online HERE while it's still available! I highly recommend it. What are your thoughts? Did you pick this up for your collection?

Monday, July 19, 2021

Luca Deluxe Figurine Set REVIEW (Disney Store/ShopDisney)

Hey everyone, happy Monday and welcome back to the blog! Today I'm sharing some quick thoughts on this absolutely stunning Disney·Pixar Luca Deluxe Figurine Set from the Disney Store (ShopDisney). If you've followed my content for a while now, you know I'm pretty big into collecting Disney Store's figurine sets (at least the Pixar themed ones)—even if, at least in the past, some of the figures haven't been the most quality when it comes to their sculpts or paint (they have been getting better though so I'll give them that). Honestly most of the figurine sets these days have been pretty impressive and I appreciate that the Disney Store has been improving them over the last few years, at least with the Deluxe sets, but this is the best one in ages—no question! 

This is probably my second favorite Pixar Deluxe Figurine set ever following the original Up one from 2009. Each character's likeness is spot on, the sculpts are extremely well made/well designed overall and the paint application (at least on mine) is very consistent and on point. My favorite aspect though is how all the sea monster characters' bases are translucent swirling ocean water. It's super creative and magical! My hat goes off to the designer of this set.

There are nine figurines included with this set and it's a fantastic selection of characters: Luca (sea monster), Alberto (sea monster), Luca (human), Alberto (human), Giulia, Massimo (with Machiavelli), Ercole (on his vespa), Daniela (Luca's mom) and Lorenzo (Luca's dad). Really my only slight complaint (which isn't even really a complaint, more of just wishful thinking on my part) is that I wish that Uncle Ugo was included. He would have looked great in this style (he totally would have been a mostly translucent PVC) and there isn't a single figure of him out there. His absence is certainly not a deal breaker though. Ciccio and Guido would have been amazing to see as well, but I know only so many figures can fit in one of these sets.

Take a close-up, detailed, 360 degree look at each figure in my video review below! Figures stand [up to] 4 1/4'' H and, while they don't have any articulation, they're still perfect for play or display.

This set retailed for $26.99 at the Disney Store and, but it has unfortunately already sold out. I'm shocked it went that fast! I'm not sure if it will get restocked, but keep your eyes peeled. All in all, this gets a 10/10 from me. What do you think?! Let me know all your thoughts in the comments below and stay tuned for more from my Pixar collection every week.

Saturday, July 17, 2021

Pixar Luxo Ball Silk Tie— Disney Parks / ShopDisney

From ShopDisney (also available at the Disney Parks), check out this awesome yellow Pixar inspired Luxo Ball Silk Tie! This was a Father's Day gift from my wife and 18 month old son last month and I couldn't be happier with it. It's fun, yet subtle and minimal—just how I like it! If you're interested in adding this to your Pixar/tie collection, it's currently available on HERE for $44.99.

Here are all the official "magic in the details" from Disney Store's site: 

Animate your outfit with our Pixar Ball silk tie featuring a single color rendering of the famous sphere woven into a solid background. You're sure to have a bounce in your step knowing you've completed your look with this stylish necktie.

Created especially for Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort

  • Silk necktie
  • Allover Pixar Ball design
  • Tuck loop

  • 100% silk
  • 3'' W x 58'' L
  • Imported

Monday, July 12, 2021

Toy Story "THE CLAW" Inflatable Pizza Planet Space Crane Ball Pit (Disney Store/ShopDisney)

The claw is his master, the claw decides who will go and who will stay. Check out this crazy cool inflatable Toy Story inspired Pizza Planet "The Claw" Space Crane Ball Pit from the Disney Store (! This was given to us as a gift earlier this year from one of my old Disney Store cast member friends/coworkers and we finally took the time to inflate it recently for my son Aidan to enjoy in his new playroom. He loves the Toy Story aliens and "the claw" scene in the original film, so he was incredibly excited to see this all blown up. 

This thing is pretty huge, measuring at 60" tall x 36" deep x 42" wide. It comes with 100 bright green balls (very lightweight), which may sound like a lot, but really isn't once you put them in the ball pit area. The 100 balls don't even cover the bottom of the rocket, but I expected that. If you want to fill it up to be more of a true ball pit, I'd suggest picking a bunch more up on Amazon. We left it as is right now, since my 18 month old doesn't know any different. He thinks it's awesome! Maybe we'll add more when he's a little older, but for now the amount it comes with works just fine. The original retail price was $49.99, but it ended up getting some pretty deep markdowns in the end.

I used a basic electric pump to blow this up (any one you'd get to pump up a pool float) and it was quick and simple! In the end it look less than 15 minutes. Other than the main rocket (which has several inflation valves), there are five other pieces to inflate and assemble (so six pieces total in the box total): the four fins (that velcro on) and "the claw" hoop to toss the balls through (which also uses velcro to attach). 

Check it out in more detail below! The Toy Story Alien costume sleeper/hat set my son is wearing was also from ShopDisney thanks to another Disney coworker friend of mine, but has since sold out.

Aidan loves the wall of Aliens!

This really is a super neat item and it's been fun seeing Aidan enjoy it so much. I know it didn't originally get the best reviews, but really no complaints from me! It works just as intended, I just feel it could have included maybe 100 more balls just to at least cover the bottom of the bit area. I don't think I would have picked this up on my own (just cause it's so big and we don't have very much space), but it's so great to have as a gift! I'm sure it will be a hit for years to come. 

Unfortunately this isn't available at the Disney Store or ShopDisney anymore, but keep your eyes open online as it may pop on Amazon or eBay every now and then. Let me know your thoughts down below! Did you pick this up for your little one?