Thursday, July 31, 2014

Throwback Thursday - Typhoon Lagoon Gator

Series: Park #9
Artist: Casey Jones
Released: July 2012

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Backside of Vinyls - July

I've already reviewed this whole figure in this post, but today I wanted to talk about it again, focusing only on the back of the July Vinylmation. This figure comes from the 2013 Poster Art series, where each design is created based on a corresponding Walt Disney World or Disneyland Resort poster. Here's the poster upon which this July vinyl is based:

On the back of the head ears are the stars from the top of the poster, with the design on the Sorcerer's Hat continuing on the back, to match Sorcerer Mickey in the poster. Down on the back of the body are more stars, plus the black and white diagonal lines that spiral from the poster's center. In the left corner of the back of the body is Cinderella's Castle, from the bottom left corner of the poster.

Plenty of Poster Art detail has been included on the back of this vinyl, to give the whole figure a well-rounded representation of July's poster. You would never know that so much had gone in to the figure, if you never turned it around to the back.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Sleeping Beauty Series Release

The Sleeping Beauty Vinylmation series has been released today at Disney Stores and The Disney Store Online. The set has 6 common 3" figures, 3 Jr. figures (sold together) plus a mystery chaser, all of which were designed by artist Gerald Mendez. Each blind box retails for $12.95. Sleeping Beauty will be released at D-Street locations Friday, August 1.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Snapshot Sunday - Dole Whip

One of my blog's signature vinyls, I will never eat enough Dole Whips! If like me you are a big Dole Whip fan, you might want to check these 13 Signs You're Obsessed with Dole Whip from Oh My Disney to see if you're as obsessed as I am. (1, 2, 3, 7 and 12 are big checks for me!)

Saturday, July 26, 2014

The Collector's Space - My Park #14 Picks

Finally we have received information on Park #14! I have been waiting for what seems like an eternity! The Park line is what brought me into the hobby, and although some collectors have voiced their opinion that the quality of the more recent Park series has declined, it's still my favorite. I still get excited about their releases and count down the days! Park #14 will be no different.

If you haven't seen the latest pictures and release information from Disney, let me fill you in on what we got last week. This will be another 8 figure blind box series - 7 commons plus 1 chaser. Retail is still $12.95 and the release date at Walt Disney World, Disneyland and the Disney Store Online will be August 15.

Here are the figures:

Grizzly Gulch

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster

Ollie the Owl from America Sings


Gargoyle from Be Our Guest Restaurant

Iguanadon from Dinosaur

Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover (TTA)

I love half this series right now and I am pretty impatient to find out what the chaser will be! My top picks are: Soarin', The Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, the Tomorrowland Transit Authority and Aladar the Iguanadon. I will go into more detail about this series in a later post, when I write a Vinylmation Review. But the four I just mentioned are already on my must-have list.

We also know now that the release date for the Park #14 Cranium Command combo set will be August 22 and the Limited Edition size will be 1,000:



I am so so excited for this set! I have wanted a Buzzy Vinylmation (first picture) for years! I wonder if there will be any other combo sets in this series? Will there be a combo topper? Tell me more! I just can't wait!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Duffy The Disney Bear #1 Release

Duffy The Disney Bear Series #1 has been released today at D-Street locations and The Disney Store Online. This is an 8 figure blind box set featuring 7 known commons and 1 chaser, designed by artists Monty Maldovan, Caley Hicks and Thomas Scott. Each blind box retails for $12.95

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Throwback Thursday - S'mores

Series: Cutesters Too
Artist: Maria Clapsis
Released: February 2011

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Backside of Vinyls - Tower of Terror Elevator

Welcome to another installment of The Backside of Vinyls! Today is the 20th birthday of the Tower of Terror and so I've chosen the Tower of Terror Elevator Vinylmation from Park #4 for today's post.

This figure is another fantastic example of Vinylmation that have just as much incredible detail on the back as they do on the front. On the back of the head is "The Hollywood Tower Hotel" written in he same font as on the building itself:

Lightning strikes across the hotel name, representing the eerie striking of lightning during the pre-show in the library. Moving down to the back of the body is the hotel's logo, but with the number "13" instead of "HTH" as featured on the front of the vinyl. 13 represents the floor it appears you visit, as the hand on the elevator passes floor 12. (As well as being an unlucky number of course). The number 13 can also be found on room keys sold in the Tower Gifts shop.

The Hollywood Tower Hotel logo on bells

I am certainly impressed with the level of detail Dan Howard included in this Vinylmation. Despite depicting an elevator, Dan has found plenty of other accurate and appropriate details to include that take this figure over the edge of amazing. There are tons of vinyls that I really like, some that I love, and even fewer that completely blow me away. This is one of them.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Vinylmation Stories - Nemo

Series: Pixar #1
Artist: Ron Cohee

Nemo has got to be one of my favorite vinyls! I love the bright colors on the body, the use of the clear vinyl and how perfectly Nemo's body fits on the head and arms of the figure. Although Nemo comes from Pixar #1, I think he can easily be mistaken for a Park series vinyl.

When I first saw this figure, what instantly came to my mind was The Seas with Nemo & Friends pavilion at EPCOT.

The bright colors reminded me of the artwork leading in to the attraction (pictured above) and the clamobile ride inside the pavilion. Nemo himself can be found outside the pavilion (pictured below) as well during the ride. Finding Nemo is one of my all-time favorite Disney movies and I just love The Seas pavilion!

The fantastic artwork from Ron Cohee and the memories this vinyl holds of EPCOT, made this a must-have figure for me, and so Nemo joined my collection.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Collector of Habit - The Muppets

Welcome to a new series of posts - Collector of Habit! These posts aim to give collectors ideas on what figures to collect, by choosing a theme to follow. Each post will suggest a new theme to base your collection on.

Let's start with The Muppets! If you're a Muppets fan, there are currently 3 series of Muppets vinyls to get you started on forming your own Muppets Vinylmation! Here are some of my favorites from across these series:

Bean Bunny, The Swedish Chef and Sweetums

Penguin, Waldo and Scooter

Animal, Sam Eagle and Gonzo

You could even extend your Muppets collection to include two figures from the Park series:

Kermit from Park #1 and MuppetVision 3D from Park #7

And, there are also 9" figures in the Muppet series:

MuppetVision Kermit, Animal and Gonzo

Those are my suggestions for a Muppets themed Vinylmation collection. I'll be back with a new theme next time

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Throwback Thursday - Watermelon

Series: Urban #3
Artist: Dan Howard
Released: January 2010

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Backside of Vinyls - Spitting Camel

Join me today as I take a look at the back side of the Spitting Camel from Park #12. I have to admit that the back of this figure sold me on owning it! I really, really liked it, but since I have to be choosy, I probably would have skipped this one if the back wasn't so impressive.

The Spitting Camel can be found in the Magic Kingdom, at The Magic Carpets of Aladdin in Adventureland. This majestic camel can catch you off guard turning its head from side to side, but beware, he does spit!

Draped over the camel's back is an ornate, golden rug, with jewels and tassels. This intricate design has been beautifully replicated on the back of the camel's Vinylmation figure, sparing no detail. Also, if you look down toward the feet of the vinyl, even the camel's tail has been included.

Another fantastic back side of a Vinylmation figure! Great job Thomas Scott!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Vinylmation Review - Topiaries

Released: March 28, 2014
Revealed/Concealed Blind Box

Topiaries was the first Vinylmation series to use the new "revealed/concealed" concept, where each blind box has a "revealed" figure on top, plus a "concealed" figure inside the blind box. My thoughts on that are for another post, this post will be a pure review of the 5 figures in the series.

This series was released as part of the 2014 Flower and Garden Festival celebrations at EPCOT. During this time, topiaries can be found of different Disney characters around Walt Disney World, particularly at EPCOT. The figures in this series are to reflect some of those characters in their flower form. I think this was a fantastic idea for a series! Something new that we haven't seen before, something memorable from the parks thats appeal to those who have never experienced the Flower and Garden Flower, whilst commemorating the occasion for those who have.

Reasons to love this series:
  • It's something a little different - 5 characters and no chaser (unless you consider all 4 "concealed" figures as chasers) making it much easier to collect the whole series. (Let's not open the can of worms on how much that would cost you and how many Sorcerer Mickeys you'd have left over)
  • The use of 3 molds - here there are technically three different molds: Sorcerer Mickey, Minnie and the regular Mickey mold. Mixes things up a little and is very appropriate for the figures included
  • The use of ears - I love the bumblebee and Donald's hat in his ears, plus the butterflies in Daisy's ears, so cute!
  • The accuracy - the characters look just like they do in their flower form, especially Donald, who is my favorite in this series. In my opinion they look realistically like topiaries, although I haven't seen any in person
  • The character choices - there are plenty of characters to chose from that have been used for topiaries. Sticking to some of the Fab 5 I think was a good choice. They're loved by a wide audience and can instantly be connected to the Flower and Garden festival

Things that aren't so great:
I don't really have anything to say here. The only issue I have with this series is not related to the series itself, it's a criticism of the method in which the boxes are sold, the nature of the revealed/concealed concept, but I won't talk about that here because it's a marketing strategy. It doesn't reduce the quality or appeal of the figures, it's just a potential deterrent to blind box them. (You can read about my feelings toward the Revealed/Concealed concept here).

Friday, July 11, 2014

Jr. #11 Finding Nemo Release

The 11th Jr. Vinylmation series - Finding Nemo, has been released today at D-Street stores and the Disney Store online. This is a smaller Jr. series with 12 figures: 11 commons (pictured above) and a mystery chaser. Each blind box retails for $9.95

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Throwback Thursday - Grizzly River Run

Series: California Adventure
Artist: Maria Clapsis
Released: June 2012

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

The Backside of Vinyls - BoardWalk Clown Slide

Thanks for joining me for this week's Backside of Vinyls post on the BoardWalk Resort Clown Slide from Park #9. What I like about the backside of this vinyl is the simplicity. Less is definitely more here. The vinyl is based on the water slide at the resort pool, which isn't overloaded with detail. I think Eric Caszatt was right not to try and add too much detail from other areas on top of the detail from the water slide.

On the back of the vinyl's ears, arms and body, we can see the red curly hair of the clown slide, which not only reflects the poolside attraction accurately, but looks ornate also. Moving down to the feet, we can see the white of the side of the pool, with water splashing against it. And then my favorite part - the detail on the back of the head.

While not found at the resort pool, the back of the head represents the vintage postcard inspired BoardWalk resort sign, which many resort guests are familiar with.

I think that's a nice addition to the figure. It's something iconic to the BoardWalk resort, fits nicely with the rest of the vinyl, stops the back of the head from being plain white, and just adds that little something extra to the appeal of the figure. I actually prefer the back of this vinyl to the front, but then, I am afraid of clowns.

Sunday, July 06, 2014

Vinylmation Stories - Tree Frog

Tree Frog
Series: Urban #8
Artist: Robert Vann

The Urban #8 Tree Frog was the second non-Park Vinylmation that I purchased. I had a strong collection of Park Series vinyls by that time, but this Urban figure drew my attention because it looked so much like Cha Cha the red-eyed tree frog from the Rainforest Cafe.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who saw that similarity. The Rainforest Cafe has always been a favorite of mine, especially when I was younger. During every Walt Disney World trip as a child, we would take the boat from Disney's Old Key West Resort, down the lake to Downtown Disney, where we would disembark right outside the Rainforest Cafe.

The waterfall, the parrots, the pool with a snapping crocodile inside, and the giant mushrooms with big, pretty butterflies were amazing to me as a child - and that was the outside. We wouldn't wait long before our safari began and then we were seated next to an array of animals. Most often with gorillas, but the elephants were my favorite. We would enjoy our food and wait for the tropical rainstorm.

During our meal, my younger brother and I would color pages with the Rainforest Cafe characters, my favorite of which was Cha Cha the tree frog. We would drink from souvenir cups decorated with the characters and we would get to take them home. As soon as I saw the Urban Tree Frog vinyl, I could clearly remember all of the many happy times I spent at the Rainforest Cafe at Downtown Disney. He doesn't have quite the same happy expression as Cha Cha, but the resemblance is enough for me to think of him every time I look at this figure.

And so, despite not being a Park figure, this tree frog had plenty of Disney World memories for me. I just had to have this brightly colored creature join my collection.