Star Wars holiday items are generally stupid. Anachronistic and stupid. Why the hell would Yoda or Darth Maul or Jango Fett wear a Santa costume? Why would Boba Fett be armed with a candy cane? The R2-D2 bobble head with a Santa hat and Christmas gifts around him? It’s a cash grab that leaves the recipients of these crapola gifts with only one response:
As I’ve mentioned, one of my favorite holiday traditions of recent years has been perusing the exclusive holiday toys at Target. The last ones I picked up weren’t actually Target exclusives – the Christmas S.L.U.G. Zombies (review) – and neither is the subject of this review; however, I did find him in the Target holiday exclusives aisle. Given that he was part of a set of blind-bagged Lego minifigures (as part of the eighth series of these figures), I can only assume Santa’s presence accounts for what it was doing in that area.
There are few things I love more than Santa Claus toys (especially ones that aren’t based on any specific property). So I’m pretty excited about this Minimates Santa Claus Pirate Ship from Diamond Select Toys. Due in November, it’s available for pre-order at BBTS for a mere $12.99. Here’s what DST has to say about it:
Christmas is coming, but it’s not coming in a sleigh pulled by eight reindeer. No, this year Santa Claus is on a boat! DST’s 2-inch Minimates mini-figure of ol’ Saint Nick comes with his festively painted pirate ship, which is packed with opening hatches, extending planks and removable sails (not shown). It’s the perfect stocking stuffer for the Minimates fan in your life, or for anyone who likes boats and Christmas.
As you may recall, last year I posted that I was on the lookout for a Kurt Adler Santa Claus decorations from the 1990s. The reason I wanted it was that it was basically an action figure (you can read a review of it here).
Since that day last December, I had a saved search on eBay for it. For months and months, nothing came up as a result for “talking santa adler” except an auction for an 8×10″ hand-color tinted photograph of J. Robert Oppenheimer (I’m 100% serious).
Finally, this past September, I got not one but two results. On the same day! One was missing his sack, but the other was complete and soon, finally, Santa Claus was mine.
There’s not a whole lot to say about the figure–he’s articulated at the shoulders and waist and says three phrases. The voice actually comes out pretty loud and clear, and whoever they got to do the voice does a pretty good Santa. Kind of sounds like the Santa from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
In the spirit of the season, I’ve decided to gift you with MP3 files of his phrases, because why not?
The holidays are getting closer, which means I’m receiving the Time and Space Toys newsletter more frequently. T&ST has become the go-to place on the Web for holiday toys based on TV specials like It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and even The Little Drummer Boy.
Anyway, you may recall that the first Rudolph figures came from a company called Playing Mantis. These days, the company producing them is called Forever Fun, and there were a few other lines in-between. T&ST’s most recent newsletter breaks it all down, and I thought it made for some mildly interesting reading.
It’s our favorite toy manufacturer! They are makers of the Rudolph and Charlie Brown Action Figures lines. But what do we call them? We get many questions about the confusing name changes. So to clear it all up, we offer this brief history.
Playing Mantis creates the Rudolph PVC and Action Figures Line under their company name, Playing Mantis in 2001.
Playing Mantis continues the lines for a few years, and creates the Brand Name “Memory Lane” for these classic nostalgic lines. The Memory Lane brand is used on and off during these years.
Playing Mantis is bought by RC2 Corp, where the line is almost killed by RC2. A few pieces were released by RC2 in 2005 under the “Memory Lane” brand.
The original Playing Mantis team creates a new company in 2006 and name it “Round 2”, buying back the Rudolph and Peanuts licenses from RC2. However the brand name “Memory Lane” was lost at RC2.
Round 2 introduces a new brand name, “Forever Fun” to categorize their holiday character lines.
Now all is back the way it started, with the same toy team at the helm, just with a new name. This year Forever Fun adds “The Little Drummer Boy” to their brand umbrella.
Here at Time and Space, you can get past releases (under various incarnations of the brand names) and all the current Forever Fun items, in fact we are the only store on the web that offers all of these all in one place! It really is forever fun!
Poe’s note: Dr. Mrs. Ghostal and I have slowly been assembling this guy as a BAF from our Futurama figures, but HamSalad here sprung for the $50 SDCC exclusive featuring the complete Robot Santa and a holiday-colored Bender. But not to fear–as soon as Amy Wong and Clobberella arrive, we’ll have our own Robot Santa to terrorize Xmas next year.
I just wanted to point out this review by yo go re over at OAFE of a 5″ Santa Claus ornament. It’s the closest I’ve ever seen to a “real” Santa action figure (i.e., not Homer Simpson or the version from Rudolph). Suffice to say, I’m already working on tracking one down. He talks, too!
This video was sent to me by Ed Lee, a PGPoA reader. It’s an extremely well-produced tribute to both Rankin-Bass Christmas specials and the Chairman of the Board himself.
Lee writes, “We work in the Boston area and did this at a local studio. It’s a video tribute to some of the old Rankin-Bass characters. We used a lot of the figures from the Playing Mantis line [and] created the band and singer from scratch and the song is an original recording.”