About Me

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No Fixed Abode, Home Counties, United Kingdom
I’m a 51-year-old Aspergic CAD-Monkey. Sardonic, cynical and with the political leanings of a social reformer, I’m also a toy and model figure collector, particularly interested in the history of plastics and plastic toys. Other interests are history, current affairs, modern art, and architecture, gardening and natural history. I love plain chocolate, fireworks and trees but I don’t hug them, I do hug kittens. I hate ignorance, when it can be avoided, so I hate the 'educational' establishment and pity the millions they’ve failed with teaching-to-test and rote 'learning' and I hate the short-sighted stupidity of the entire ruling/industrial elite, with their planet destroying fascism and added “buy-one-get-one-free”. I also have no time for fools and little time for the false crap we're all supposed to pretend we haven't noticed, or the games we're supposed to play. I will 'bite the hand that feeds' to remind it why it feeds.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

T is for Toy Fair '18 Reports - Schleich - Wildlife

Other than animals and civilian ('Farm & Zoo') there was nothing on the Schleich stand to interest the hobby really, there is a Fantasy range we'll look at in another post (along with some more licensed stuff), but there are no knights (Eldrador now cleared through [and from] TKMaxx), pirates, Samurai or Ninjas, no Gladiators, Egyptians, no historicals, the siege-engines and medieval camp gone . . . nothing, nada, zilch!

Anyway, today we shall look at the Schleich stalwart - animals, and starting at the beginning; Dinosaurs! Funnily enough I picked-up a K&M stegosaurus the other day and was quite surprised by its quality, but these Schleich are pretty much at the top of the game, and like the Papo range, don't have the weird join-lines found on the larger 'CHINA' models - including the K&M example.

I particularly like the treatment of the Dimetrodon 'sails' they have the radiating spars of the extended vertebra nicely sculpted, but the blood-vessels have been given a more amorphic paint-treatment, over and between the spars, ignoring their symmetry, which gives sense to several of the theories concerning the functionality of the sails; either to cool in the heat of the day, or to warm the blood in the rays of the morning sun, or indeed - both!

The wild animal range is also pretty much as it's been for a while now, a few new tools of old but popular sellers (when everyone's bought your whatever, give them a new whatever to buy!), some totally new animals, and the core range carried-over from the previous year.

Obviously with things like the cetaceans 'constant' scale has gone out of the window, but they would otherwise be several feet long, I think for such beasts it's understandable.

Most of the arctic and marine animals (back left and bottom row) are new for 2018, along with a lovely koala, whole lion family, a delightful chimpanzee, a pair of zebras a hippo and a rhinoceros. There's also a new pig family in the more toy-like Farm World range.

But with the domestic range there is both a scale creep (upwards) and that move to a more toy like or juvenile look if you know what I mean. This girl - for instance - is a part action-figure with four-to-six points of articulation; I didn't study them closely? And - like the Revell stuff the other day - seems to be aiming to take market-share from people who were not previously seen as obvious rivals, such as poor old Playmobile . . . again!

For the animal fans though the core range remains much as it's been for years and I was quite taken by the long-horn cattle in dark brown to the far right and - as you saw earlier today - I keep an eye out for new cat models!

A flavour of the catalogue gives more of these play set type things, and while the longhorns are in the display rack the rest don't seem to be and also seem to have a more playful, less realistic countenance - but that may just be me seeing things which aren't there!

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