Monday, May 1, 2017

I'll Tell You a Toy Story

But it won't involve toy Miss M. Not yet at least! I am getting very close to starting those toy stories up again. However I wanted to share another juicy toy story from my youth. So click the link and read on fellow toy fans!



Most of you know about my various stories about toy collecting. There was the saga of finding my Glimmer She-Ra figure. My various phone calls to the Toy Biz hotline asking when certain X-Men characters would be made into figure form. Or even finding my old Fear Street books at a used book store that I had parted with when I was a precocious pre-teen. I have a great deal of memories involving the art of collecting. Sometimes though the art of collecting likes to play tricks and games with my heart.

So let's travel back to 1998. That was an interesting year. I was young. Around 16. Sweet 16. Only I wasn't very sweet. I was grody skinny with platinum blonde hair and a wardrobe that mirrored Gwen Stefani way too much. I was also boy crazy but the only thing that could douse that flame was my toy crazy.

That year some really fun movies came out. I could rattle off a list or you could just Google great movies from 1998 and relive a pretty fun list. Either way The Avengers came out that year. No, I do not mean the Avengers from Marvel, but the Avengers from across the pond.

The tale of two British agents John Steed and Emma Peel. Based off a television series from the 60's, this new flashy movie had a dreamy Ralph Fiennes in it and a lovely Uma Thurman in catsuit with red hair.

I was obsessed. I wanted my own cat suit. I ditched the platinum hair and dyed it red and began parting it like Emma Peel. I also had a thing for obnoxious belts.

I was completely entranced by the build up to this movie. With that kind of interest and curiosity for a movie it was only a matter of time before my thoughts began to turn to toys and merchandise. At that time I just knew that The Avengers would be a smash hit and that some toy company would be releasing figures of John Steed and Emma Peel.

Since this was the days before clicking on the internet to find the latest toy news my only options for finding out news about any Avengers toy line was through either Toyfare magazine or simply cold calling toy stores inquiring if they knew of any merchandise coming in.

That is just what I did. The closer it got to the premiere date of The Avengers in theaters, I would call Toysrus and ask if they had received any toys from the new Avengers movie. The replies I would hear would be to the effect of, "There is an Avengers movie?" Or, "We don't know what we get on the trucks, just check back every week." I was losing hope.

Finally a week after the movie was out I was beginning to really lose my mind. Surely there would be toys released for this movie, right? I gave one last call to Toysrus and asked if they had any Avengers toys. The employee on the phone said, "Yes, we just got some new Avengers toys in stock."

I was filled with so many questions. What did they look like? Were they figures? Or more doll like? Did they capture Uma's likeness as Emma Peel? She would hopefully turn out better than that sad Poison Ivy doll from Batman and Robin. (To be very honest I loved the doll and figures from that ill fated Batman romp.)

As fast as I could I high tailed it to Toysrus ready to find my Avengers toys. Thoughts of a dreamy Ralph Fiennes figure floated in my head making me feel giddy. What truly tipped my nerves to a near orgasmic point was the curiosity of what the toy packaging would look like. Upon entering the Toysrus I rushed towards the action figure aisle in a frenzy. I had to! I was not going to be fighting other like minded nerds for Avengers toys. I just knew toy nirvana was at my finger tips. Life was but a piece of cherry vanilla cake.

It was not that easy. Toy collecting never is. I looked high and low hoping to come across the movie toy line. I found nothing. My head swam in a sea of confusion. I grabbed the nearest Toysrus employee and asked, "I called earlier about the new Avengers toys you got in. Could you please tell me where they are at? The movie just came out a week ago."

The employee looked at me as if I was crazy, "I did not know they made a movie. But here, I will show you the Avengers toys." I followed the employee trying to wrap my head around how I missed these items.

When I was taken to the Avengers toys something did not make sense. "Here miss, the Avengers toys. They are mixed in with the other super hero figures so it is easy to miss them." I was staring at boxes of Toybiz's Famous Covers line featuring Marvel super heroes. I was lost. Where was Emma Peel? Or John Steed? Or even Sean Connery. I would have settled for Sean.

During my phone call the employee had thought I was referring to Marvel's the Avengers and not the spy movie The Avengers. It was a simple mistake but one that cost me a great deal. My hopes and dreams were dashed, taken from me. There were no action figures to the 1998 Avengers movie. I think I was the only person on Earth that even wanted a toy line. I left with nothing feeling the weight of the world crash upon my feelings. My collective heart was crushed. I didn't even end up seeing the movie in theaters. I just didn't care. What was the point?

The moral of this sad story is that back in the olden days we did not have the information to know what was out there. It was truly a blind experience walking into a toy store. Of course toy magazines would become handy as would the internet but for a sweet 16 year old mess like myself I had no idea what to do. I wish there had been a toy line made to The Avengers. I wish I had had other dorky toy collecting friends back then. They would have helped me in my grief. At least I had my hair styled for awhile like Uma's Emma. There is a silver lining in all things. Are there any movie toy lines that you wish had been made? Let me know!

Now that we are approaching the summer time, I will be having some time off from work. I won't be as busy which can only mean one thing! (Well... a few things maybe.) Toy stories will be returning! Find out soon what toy Miss M has been up to all these months. It has been a lot! I hope you are all doing well! Be back in a flash.

16 comments:

  1. I remember when I first heard there was an Avengers movie coming out, I got really excited. Then I realized they weren't talking about the Marvel comic.

    Of course, now I'm kinda ready for the Avengers flicks to be finished. What a difference 20 years makes.

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    1. Right? A lot can happen in 20 years. I was shocked to recall how long ago it was that the Marvel movies came out with Iron Man. This has been a long saga for sure. Hope you have been well!

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  2. I used to flip through TV Guide as a little kid and see The Avengers listed on A&E. When I'd tune in to watch the exploits of Captain America and Hawkeye and the Scarlett Witch, there would always be these stuffy British folks having mildly entertaining adventures. It took me forever to understand that there was another band of "heroes" with the same name. Reverse disappointment is still disappointment.

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    1. Haha reverse disappointment is indeed still disappointment. Oh how things have been twisted and confused with the Avengers. lol

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  3. Good to know you are still writing toy stories!

    I remember seeing this Avengers movie in the early 2000s around the time I was catching up on comic book movies of previous decades to match they then new output of X-Men and Spider-Man adaptations.

    Much like the Toys R Us employee I too mistook this for the Marvel team. But hey when Uma looks so much like Scarlett Johanssen as Black Widow today I'm sure you can understand the mix up.

    Had this movie been a bigger hit I'm sure we'd have had more toys. Though I wouldn't be surprised if Sean Connery has some prototype figure of his character in that teddy bear costume hidden deep in a vault somewhere.

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    1. Sean Connery in a teddy bear costume figure for the win! I would love to see that figure made. Oh it would just be splendid. Uma does really give off a Black Widow vibe huh?

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  4. I'm sorry that you couldn't find any then. :(
    If it's any consolation, I could probably make you a set now, using (ironically) Black Widow and The Joker (or Alfred) as bases for the bodies.

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    1. It is perfectly fine! I have more than made up for it. I know you could totally make a set now because you have talents. Hope you are doing well!

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  5. I still want toys of Krys and On-X from "Rainbow Brite and the Star Stealer" as that robot horse was pure awesome. I also wish there had been some toy love for "The Neverending Story" (there were some sad foreign toys but nothing that really does Falkor justice).

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    1. I totally agree with you on both accounts! Toy lines are totally in need from both films. I loved that robot horse. So cool looking!

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  6. nice story miss m. for can say given how both the marvel team and the old british original avengers can confuse even toy sellers. when one asks for avengers toys. plus sadly avengers toys like that would one never have been made any way due to the cost of the likeness rights and sean conrey and think the lady who played emma peel making it known they would never okay a toy likeness. plus i also did the calling stores to find out when certain characters figures would be out mostly toybizs rogue and famous couples cloak and dagger two pack.so your not alone miss m in your methods of toy maddness

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    1. I am so glad we shared similar methods to our toy madness. The worst thing Toybiz could have ever done was to leave that toll free number on the back of the packaging. I called them monthly begging them to tell me what was up. I really get annoyed when actors refuse to have their likeness portrayed in figure form. That would be the highest honor in my opinion. I hope you have been doing well!

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  7. WHAT!!?? What the HELL kind of a toy story was that M!? Here, I thought you were gonna say that you had found Avengers toys, or that they had eventually came out with them!! What a COCK TEASE you are!! I was given a VHS collection of the Emma Peel show when I was a kid and I LOVE that Avengers! Though I also don't blame Stan Lee for the same name, cuz the comic and show came out so close to each other. Still,even though you cock teased me with Peel and Steed Avengers figures, I look forward to the new Dorkette stories!

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    1. Well you know, I am a huge tease for toys. haha. You are the only person I know who would claim that I cock teased them over Avengers toys. I don't even know what to say except to take it up with the Brits. lol I hope you have been doing well! Toy stories will be coming back. I promise!

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    2. I'll take the issue up with Billy Idol himself!! Oh, and if you should happen to wanna come to North East Ohio to see the Wonder Woman movie, I will pay like, TWENTY FIVE DOLLARS of your plane fare, PLUS part of your movie ticket!! You just gotta get here by June 5th!! Pretty good deal right!? And if you can't come, could you at least video your face as you react to the Wonder Woman movie and then post the reactions up on this blog? I NEED to see how you feel about this film!! Knowing DC movies, it may very well suck worse than the worst Marvel movie, but it is STILL the first Wondy movie, so we MUST care about it!!

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  8. Well there ain't much movie toys back then unless it is a big action franchise. Even when the terminator 2 is out, there isn't much toys during the 90s. More of that came out in the 2000 for that movie. Not too sure in future Avengers actually made into any toys....heck even the Kingsman don't have any toys yet.

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