wdw in review: my disney loot

Ellen, the kids and I returned home from a week of fun and sun in Walt Disney World yesterday. Even with grandparents and an aunt in tow, WDW with a one year old and and an (almost) four year old is pretty challenging… but we had a fun time! I thought I’d take today and tomorrow to talk a little about my vacation, fully recognizing that this has little to nothing to do with teaching or comics. Thanks for indulging me.

First let me show you the loot I brought back from the Mouse House. I picked up a couple of fun “exclusive” toys for my knickknack shelf; exclusive is, of course, a relative term since hundreds of thousands of tourists flock to Disney World every year. Still, I wanted pick up some things that I couldn’t easily scoop up in the toy section of a Target on any given day of the week. By and large, I think I succeeded.

Disney Vinylmation- Toy Story 3: Bullseye – Boy oh boy, Disney has a racket goin’ with these Vinylmation figurines! Blind boxed vinyl figures in the shape of Mickey Mouse, I saw no less than 10 different series of these collector toys across the various parks. My sister and I decided to try our luck with a couple of the TS3 brand; I ended up with Bullseye, Woody’s horse. They’re fun, although I have to say the price point on these would discourage me from doing anything more than one cursory purchase.

Walt Disney World Thrill Rides These Matchbox/Hot Wheels style toys called out to me the second I saw ’em. I wasn’t a great fan of Hot Wheels in my youth, but I liked how all the toys were in the shape of the various rides at the theme parks. I especially liked the designs for the Astro Orbiter and the randomness of having a Splash Mountain/hollowed out tree car.

Most of these have already ended up in Elliot and Henry’s possession, but I’ll probably keep two or three of ’em on the shelf.  A couple of caveats: I do wish they had included a Doom Buggy instead of some of the lamer new attractions… and the cars that they have made are a little chintzy in their use of plastic v. die cast metal. Still, they’re very cool.

Star Tours Travel Agency playset – I feel I should so some qualifying of this purchase. Not much qualifying, but a little.

The younger among you might not believe this, but when I was thirteen years old, Star Wars merchandise was almost non-existent. That seems like crazy talk now, when a person can walk down any given aisle at Toys R Us and find 40-odd action figures, vehicles, LEGO sets, and so on… but it’s true. After Return of the Jedi, the series went into hibernation for over a decade and didn’t really come back in a big way until 1995. As a huge fan of the movies, this was a problem for me and my friends.

The ONLY place I knew of where newish merchandise was being created for the Star Wars movies was at Disney/MGM Studios for the Star Tours ride. On my first visit to Disney in ’93, I went ABSOLUTELY CRAZY buying Star Wars stuff. Nowadays, SW merch isn’t so special, but when I saw this five pack of action figures, I knew I was going to buy it. It’s exactly the kind of thing I would have flipped out over when I was 13.

All five figures feature in the new (totally awesome) Star Tours simulator ride. I’m not as up on my Star Wars toy knowledge as I have been in years’ past, but I’m guessing these are likely repaints of already existing figures. The C-3PO figure has, somewhat strangely, more articulation than most of the toys I remember playing with when I was a kid. I also really like the droid with the one wheel leg who goes by the moniker “Aly-San-San”, a sly reference to the droid being voiced on the pre-show by Emmy award winning actress Alison Janney.

Fez – Yeah, I bought a fez at EPCOT in the World Showcase. I suspect it will end up being a part of my already-planned Halloween costume. Keen minded readers among you may already be able to figure out my Halloween costume based on previous posts.

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