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.

Friday, March 9, 2018

T is for Toy Fair '18 Reports - Schleich - Bayala &etc.

I think I mentioned the pinky-purple section yesterday, so let's get that swiftly out of the way and save the relative safety of the animals 'till tomorrow. Bayala is the name of this game and it's very pinky-purple . . . and mauve . . . and sky-blue . . . and mint-green . . . and rainbowy!

Mermaids; in scallop-shells - except they don't look like scallops, they look like cheap rack-toy purses from the 1970's, or Polly-pocket compacts from the '80's? But Mermaids are mermaids and out of the shell they are nice sculpts if that's you thing.

Unicorns; I've said it before and I'll say it again: They're everywhere! Quite apart from the bandwagon of the unicorn-fest, it's a clear attack on whoever's got My Little Pony franchises, and there are quite a few of them.

Unicorns with fairies! Again; nothing wrong with them as sculpts, they are a bit big for figure collectors or modellers to do much with, but it's where the money is . . .

. . . the biggest section of the Schleich catalogue (after the Wild Animal section) is the Horse Club section, clearly going after girls' pocket-money or girls' parents money, and attacking Breyer - all these big companies are ruthless businesses, and if Breyer are doing well, they will be attacked.

As well as the DC & Marvel comic stuff (increasingly: 'movie' stuff!) I posted yesterday, Schleich have two other licensed product-lines in the early-year catalogue (everything we're looking at in these posts is good 'till June 2018), one being Peanuts, no surprises here, various companies have done PVC Peanuts over the years; with or without permission! We looked at the latest (Phidal) the other day.

Of slightly more interest (from a purely intellectual point of view - I'm not rushing out to buy them or anything like that!) is the Maya stuff. Without Google to hand I think it's an old European TV thing (Heimo or Bully did some figures ages [decades?]  ago - I'm sure), clearly with a Movie out (or forthcoming), which is nice.

Not because I like franchises, I don't; I despair at the state of the whole licensed-character 'thing', even though it goes back the best part of a century, with Betty Boop, Robinson's Gollies, Jonny Walker, various cats (Felix, Figaro, Fritz . . . ) and Disney - of course, but it's got to the point were there's not much else? At least the Bayala above seems to be a totally 'in-house' construct.

But in a world where Disney, Lucas, DC, Marvel and Nintendo seem to own half of everything cultural or toy-like, it's nice to see European (or Bwreaksit British!) things like Dr. Who or Pepper Pig getting picked-up and passed across the pond, or further afield like Japan. The irony in this case being that the Maya figurines aren't even available in the UK . . . Doh!

Still - I get to put Maya in the tag-list! More Schleich tomorrow.

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