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Rants & Raves

Weekend Discussion: Are Collectors Just Stupid?

This is not supposed be a rant where someone yells at clouds, but I have been wondering more and more lately if the toy collecting hobby has completely gone off the rails. These days people buy toys that cost $350, $400 or even much more, $500 and even $900. And they do it quite happily so. Why should a toy ever be $350 or even more? Why do companies even still pretend these things are toys, when they are in fact just memberberries for adults and no one else? Will the HasLab Rancor come in a box that says “Ages 4+”? Why do people part with so much money voluntarily and quite merrily even and never bother to ask if that is what toy collecting should really be? Click through to continue the discussion!

The new Hasbro CEO?

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Hasbro, we will give you proper congratulations for choosing the RAREST The Vintage Collection figure to re-release for us. But is there any way you could think outside of the box and go a step further? How much more would it have belabored you to include an alternate helmet of the 332nd Company (Ahsoka Tano’s Clone Trooper), so we can pair them with the glorious Ahsoka Tano (Mandalore) (VC202) figure you just released. Let us get this straight. We have The Black Series [Phase IV] version of this character and a 5-inch Galaxy Of Adventures version, but you can’t include a second helmet and give it to us in a 3.75-inch scale. You hurt us! We know “newness” to a figures counts as a new figure, but it would have been WORTH IT here. Oh, and please continue to pick candidates from JTA’s Top 25 Better Choices For The Repack Case Assortments poll.

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I get that the recently revealed Genndy Tartakovsky Clone Wars action figures for The Vintage Collection are getting a mixed reception from collectors. Still, for me, this is some of the most exciting news in recent memory as a Star Wars collector, and that’s with me accepting they’re imperfect. (more….)

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OK, Hasbro. You need a reality check. The current exclusive program is an unmitigated disaster. And you should be held accountable for its ineffectiveness. Unless you’re dead under a rock somewhere, you must know how pre-orders for online exclusives are COMPLETE calamities, right? This nonsense has to stop. (more….)

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The announcement of the upcoming “in the pipeline” The Vintage Collection Lobot figure is a tremendous victory for TVC collectors. Click through to learn why this is so.

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It’s becoming increasingly more frustrating to find anything Star Wars-related merchandise at retail. And while we are constantly bombarded by the pompous defenders that retailer exclusives are a necessary evil for the Star Wars toy line, one has to wonder what the point of all this is when literally nothing is found. (more….)

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Hasbro did collectors of The Vintage Collection no favors with the announcement of the Death Star Droid. It STILL doesn’t reflect the modern counterpart of the on-screen character, because, well, it’s a modern counterpart to the Kenner figure only. (more….)

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Sigh. I shouldn’t have walked away from Hasbro Pulse’s Fan Fest online event saying “Why does Hasbro hate The Vintage Collection collecting community so much? Why are they completely disengaged from its needs?” But I did. And between the sorry repacks confirmed, to the desperately needed repacks they’re dangling over our heads, I understand why people are fleeing from this scale left and right. The straw that broke the camel’s back for me was the announcement of the re-released Han Solo (Endor) figure. Does Hasbro store any record-keeping of their releases? Do they go to discount outlets? Do they have any indication of what fans want? (more….)

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There’s got to be a way that The Vintage Collection collecting community can get into Hasbro’s good graces that it inspires them to produce the best action figure line possible. As you all know well, it’s been a torturous uphill battle, and it often feels like they bother with us because they “have” to, not because they “want” to. I recently came across a clip of the season 1 finale of 2000’s Malcolm in the Middle television show (some of the greatest TV ever produced by the way), and I thought it was the perfect metaphor of the relationship between The Vintage Collection, The Vintage Collection collecting community, and Hasbro. And what metaphor would be complete without injecting Bea Arthur, ABBA, and buttons? Click through if you dare.

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Thank you for getting Paploo into The Vintage Collection, Hasbro. As one of the main Ewoks in Return Of The Jedi with tons of screen time, it’s awesome to get an update as well as another Kenner 96 release checked off in our collections. But as usual, you have some work to do. Click through for more.

    

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Should We Concede Defeat With Walmart Pre-orders?

Something’s gotta give. This is a mere sampling of the many items from my many orders with Walmart that have been canceled without warning. The Black Series 6″ figures, The Vintage Collection figures, and Walmart exclusives have all gotten canceled. I must have over 30 cancellation emails from Walmart now. The question is whose fault is this? It’s a question we’ve never received an honest answer to from anyone.

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2020 has come and gone, and that’s good for many reasons, of course. But it’s bad for others. One reason in particular that it’s not good is because of how Hasbro treated The Vintage Collection for The Empire Strikes Back’s 40th Anniversary. (more….)

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Are you tired of proving your worth to Hasbro, 3.75″ collectors? How is it that we literally “kill” it for The Khetanna and then only get two all-new action figures to populate it? And then we all step up to the plate HUGELY once again for the Razor Crest, only to see Hasbro asleep at the wheel. Why aren’t they banging out 3.75″ action figures for us after that major campaign success? They owe it to us to make us new characters from The Mandalorian for The Vintage Collection. And after two years, how is it that we don’t have some core and behind the scenes characters from The Mandalorian yet? (Would you announce Kuiil already?) While Hasbro is obsessively reusing parts from their older 6″ figures, they’re doing next to nothing to utilize older 3.75″ super-articulated figures that could be revitalized to bring us new characters from The Mandalorian. Oh, and yes, we deserve some all-new tooling as well. (more….)

      

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Look, this isn’t another dig at “sixers.” So don’t take it that way. But will Hasbro ever throw a bone to TVC collectors? It’s pure frustration. The Vintage Collection cannot catch a break. Retail doesn’t care. Collectors are getting numb again. And it’s obvious that Hasbro certainly doesn’t care. (more….)

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You have to wonder what happens at Hasbro’s Product Development meeting. Do they pitch ideas based on what’s popular and sells? Or are they so far behind with playing catch-up for being ill-prepared with The Mandalorian, that everything is getting pushed to the backburner? Think about it.

Hasbro designs a multipack including a trio of Cantina aliens or Jabba’s aliens. Check. Classic vintage Kenner packaging. Check. The first run sells out in no time. Check. Hasbro solicits it once again due to its success. Check. Hasbro never produces another set like it again. Check. “We seem to be made to suffer. It’s our lot in life.” Check. (more….)

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Yesterday, after expressing personal joy and elation for the announced all-new Return Of The Jedi Boba Fett, I posted an article suggesting Hasbro relook at the packaging to make it more authentic to the original Kenner card back. A few readers took the article, which focused on encouraging Hasbro to make the artwork better, out of context, and interpreted it as complaining. So, in return, they complained about “perceived” complaining. If they read the article, they’d see the relevance of it. Thankfully, someone did. JTA reader and friend Binary_Son, famous for creating our “Back The Barge” campaign posters, whipped up how he sees the Return Of The Jedi Boba Fett card art in minutes. And it’s already worlds better than Hasbro’s version shown yesterday. You can see how important it is NOT to zoom in on Boba Fett and correct the “pill” and “Backer” colors. And let’s not forget about the unobstructed sawed-off blaster rifle or the darker blue sky. All of these elements are crucial. In his rough example, the lower body would still need some work, but hopefully, you’ll catch the drift of what Hasbro should be giving us. Thanks, Binary_Son!

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OK, Hasbro. Firstly, thank you for doing right by collectors of The Vintage Collection. Today’s announcement was LONG OVERDUE, but at least it’s here now. Secondly, since you’ve confirmed this figure’s release, it’s now time to talk about that card back. You should have time to remedy the multiple issues that plague it and get it to your art department to fix it. Click through for more.

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Is Hasbro simply denying that Fives is getting repacked in the mainline? Their “ultimate checklist” is not as ultimate as they think. It lists the other figures from the wave (Hondo, Chirrut, Jedi Luke), but Fives is still conspicuously missing! We just reviewed this figure, and it’s one of Hasbro’s best. I have 4 of them in hand from Amazon, and another arriving today! Hasbro, where’s Fives?!

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If you’re a The Black Series 6″ collector, Jar Jar Binks and the Return Of The Jedi Boba Fett should outrage you (more….)

  

A wider box doesn’t mean the figure inside is a deluxe figure.

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Hasbro made TWO HUGE mistakes deciding on what figures to release in The Vintage Collection basic figure line. It might be two of their worst decisions in the ENTIRE run of The Vintage Collection basic figure line. (more….)

    

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As you know, Ollie’s stores got multiple case assortments of The Vintage Collection in enough quantity to make a big deal about it and posted the news in their ad the week they went for sale. If you’re a collector of The Vintage Collection, you know that MANY of the figures that arrived at Ollie’s never made their way to brick and mortar stores like TARGET and WALMART. A lot of collectors saw the Rogue One Stormtrooper for the first time at Ollie’s, and on clearance to boot. One of the case boxes from the same Hasbro distribution center went to Ollie’s. And then we have another picture of a Walmart case from Walmart with the local label pulled back for comparison. What we discovered is not unexpected, but still disconcerting. It provides proof of how frustrating the current state of distribution is. Click through for more.

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TVC Is Falling Seriously Behind When It Comes To Emperor Palpatine

The Vintage Collection is in desperate need of Emperor Palpatine figures. We have an idea of how to kill three birds with one stone. (more….)

      

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It’s easy to forget what magnitude of things are wrong with The Vintage Collection when uber-cool items like the BMF are shipping, but don’t lose focus. I typically cannot be bothered with anything on social media, but this post caught my eye. JTA was tagged by blueharvestcollector with a post that asks, “Where’s the TVC scale version?” (of Baby Yoda). The question seems simple, but it’s profound because it speaks volumes. If the absence of a 3.75″ The Child action figure in the line doesn’t scream at you how disengaged Hasbro is to The Vintage Collection; nothing will. For goodness sake, Chia Pet collectors have Baby Yoda before TVC collectors. Doesn’t that embarrass anyone at Hasbro? And before someone says, “maybe the character is to small,” I would draw your attention to 2009’s TLC Captain Typho (BD 47) figure’s communicator accessory. I believe it’s still the tiniest 3.75″ accessory to date. For that matter, the 6″ The Child’s accessories are tiny as well.

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Hasbro, thank you for the all-new and beautiful Tantive IV playset. It was a nice surprise. But we have to talk about that pack in figure stat! (more….)

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As long as I’ve been collecting and reporting on the Hasbro toy line, there has been an endless circle of blame between retail and Hasbro. Hasbro says they send the stuff to retail. Retail says that Hasbro never sends the product. Wherever the truth lies, collectors know that the bottom line is that The Vintage Collection has primarily become an online/mail-order collection of action figures. (more….)

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