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Messages - Nicklab

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The Force Awakens / Re: TFA 3.75" Scale Millennium Falcon
« on: November 18, 2015, 07:12 PM »
They ran a little late, but the segment ran at about 6:55 ET.  Mark Boudreaux was on GMA40 via Skype from "The Bucket" and talked about the vintage Falcon as well as the new TFA version.  Joining him during the segment was the Toy Hunter himself, Jordan Hembrough.  It's great to see Mark getting some recognition for his work at both Kenner and Hasbro over the years.  But no mention of the BMF Falcon, which I really think is Mark's masterpiece.

Star Wars Rebels / Re: Star Wars Rebels Toy Rumors!
« on: November 18, 2015, 03:31 PM »
Seriously?  I totally missed that this new version of Ezra came with a lightsaber.

I would have to think that the new Rebels figures are probably going to come out After the big TFA push.  Which probably means that they may not be out until some time in January or February.

The Force Awakens / Re: TFA 3.75" Scale Millennium Falcon
« on: November 18, 2015, 11:19 AM »
Kudos to you, Jayson, for posting the Bloomberg article about Mark Boudreaux, senior designer for Hasbro.  I probably met Mark for the first time about 10 years ago at either Toy Fair or a convention, and he's an incredibly gracious guy who is very generous with his time.  He worked on the design of the original Millennium Falcon toy for Kenner, the BMF Falcon and the new version for THE FORCE AWAKENS.  He really is one of the unsung heroes of the hobby and those of us who started collecting as kids in the 70's owe so much of our enjoyment of this line to Mark and his work.  And it was great to read that even at 60, he's working enthusiastically on the toy line for ROGUE ONE and wants to see his way through to EPISODE 8 and 9!

From Hasbro's Twitter feed:  Hasbro designer Mark Boudreaux talks #StarWars tonight on #GMA40 at 6:30pm ET!

TV-9D9 / Re: Star Wars Rebels - Season 2 (Spoilers)
« on: November 18, 2015, 08:11 AM »
I appreciate the previously established EU backstory on Ackbar and the development of the B-Wing.  When that source material came out it was an interesting way to flesh out a character who was a great part of ROTJ.

But then there's Ackbar's appearance in CLONE WARS.  He wasn't mentioned by name in the Tartakovsky cartoons, but the Mon Cal's did play a part there.  And when the Filoni incarnation of CLONE WARS went to Dac, we got to meet Captain Ackbar.

Now, if REBELS had tried to shoehorn Ackbar into this story arc?  I think in that case it might have had the effect of turning Ackbar into the SW galaxy's version of Forest Gump.  And the audience could be left wondering where will Ackbar turn up next, like it's some sort of joke.  And considering how the story developed between Hera and Quarrie?  I couldn't see that sort of dialogue working with Ackbar's character.

Plenty of the prototype Boba Fett figures turned up at Walgreens stores.  And with Walgreens taking over Rite Aid?  That means there are going to be that many more Walgreens stores VERY SOON.  I think this Emporer's Wrath Vader will probably be reasonably easy to get.

According to this article, Hasbro is already struggling to keep up with the demand for Star Wars toys

Written by
Ashley Rodriguez
November 16, 2015

Four weeks away from the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens—and nine weeks after the film’s merchandise hit shelves—Hasbro is running low on inventory.

Star Wars sales met the toymaker’s highest expectations when new merchandise debuted on Sept. 4, and while the rush has eased since, demand is still ahead of expectations, CEO Brian Goldner said during an investor presentation today (Nov. 16). “As a result,” Goldner said, “inventory has been light in recent weeks and we are working to catch up.”

The toymaker, which licenses Star Wars from Disney, got a much-needed jolt from the hugely-popular brand last quarter when it helped drive revenue in the “boys” category up 24%. Overall, Star Wars sales helped Hasbro gain an edge over larger rival Mattel, which had an 11% drop in net sales last quarter, while Hasbro’s revenue ticked up 1%.

The company hopes to benefit from the brand far beyond Episode VII’s theatrical run, which begins Dec. 18.

“It’s really about that fact that, over the next five years, there will be more Star Wars entertainment than there’s been over the last 30,” said Goldner. “You’re really reigniting a fan base that has been looking forward to this era of Star Wars. And certainly we expect the brand to have success not only in the US but around the world.”

Over the past five years, partner brands like Star Wars and Marvel averaged 20% of Hasbro’s total annual revenue. That contribution is on target to reach 25% this year, bolstered by the success of Star Wars and other brands, Goldner said. Moving forward, partner brands should make up about 20% to 25% of the company’s total revenue, as Hasbro continues to grow that portion of the business.

The Black Series 6" Figures / Re: Walmart 6" Imperial Shock Trooper
« on: November 15, 2015, 03:30 PM »
Gotta hate Walmart... pretty much all the time.  This is the chain where you're most likely to encounter an employee who simply doesn't want to help you, and will say things like "I don't think we're carrying Star Wars anymore".  So naturally, the chain that's got the most Hasbro Star Wars exclusives is Walmart.   Ugh.

The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Walmart Black Series 3.75" Wave 2
« on: November 15, 2015, 03:23 PM »
JTA posted a store find of this wave from Western New York State.  So this wave is beginning to show up domestically.

The Black Series 6" Figures / Re: 6" Black Series Rumors
« on: November 13, 2015, 08:33 PM »
An ANH Leia got announced at NYCC, correct?  So we've got all of the characters from the Trash Compactor scene accounted for.  So the figures are probably going to feature some alternate deco from the individual release, and there will probably be an alternate head sculpt for Luke.  What would really put this set over the top is if they include a Dianoga, too.  Otherwise it's going to seem like a total cash grab.

The Black Series 6" Figures / Re: Walmart 6" Imperial Shock Trooper
« on: November 13, 2015, 08:14 PM »
I made a trip to one local WM store today.  No sign of the exclusive Resistance X-Wing at the store I visited.  One thing to watch?  The big Millennium Falcon promotional display that's hanging in the electronics department.  Which gets me thinking, if the 6" Imperial Shocktrooper is a promotional tie-in with the release of Battlefront, then you might want to check near the video games in WalMart stores.

The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Walmart Black Series 3.75" Wave 2
« on: November 13, 2015, 08:48 AM »
Yakface posted images of wave 2 figures on the pegs at a Canadian WalMart store.  Given the timing, I'm wondering if this wave is being released in conjunction with the Battlefront promotion that's going on at WalMart this weekend?

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: The Force Awakens Trailers
« on: November 13, 2015, 08:44 AM »
It ran on ABC, which is owned by Disney.  Why would Disney even entertain the thought of giving that potential audience to NBC?

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: The Force Awakens Trailers
« on: November 12, 2015, 11:51 PM »
Check out the the TV spot that aired on ABC tonight.  Once again, there are a few seconds of new footage to check out!

TV-9D9 / Re: Star Wars Rebels - Season 2 (Spoilers)
« on: November 12, 2015, 10:07 PM »
The nods to concept material seem to be quite abundant in this new Disney era of Star Wars.  J.J. Abrams seems to be leaning heavily on some McQuarrie designs for THE FORCE AWAKENS.  The AT-AT's that were in "The Lost Commanders" drew upon some of the concept artwork for the AT-AT's.  Hell, the name of the Mon Cal starship builder was QUARRIE!!!

As for the B-Wing?  I was glad to see some of it's origins explored here.  Quarrie referred to it as the "Blade Wing", which is where that B comes from.  And the concept behind the B-Wing in ROTJ was that a flight of B-Wing fighters could take on a Star Destroyer and disable it with their heavy blasters, ion cannons and proton torpedoes.  There's an illustration that I've always really liked that I believe dates back to around ROTJ, and it shows B-Wings taking out an Imperial Star Destroyer.

As for the super-laser concept?  It's cool to see something like that incorporated, but noting that there are complications with how it will disable the ship's hyperdrive.  From a story standpoint it shows that the ship is a work in progress as it makes its way from prototype to production.  As for the gunner's pod?  That's something that actually dates back to Joe Johnston's conceptual design of the B-Wing, but it looks like for the purposes of this episode the concept for the gunners pod got added onto what looks very much like the ship from ROTJ.  The Action Fleet Series Alpha line actually offered up what that concept B-Wing would look like:

As for the status of B-Wings in the Rebel fleet?  I think that's something that the Star Wars story group is taking on.  I think they're trying to respect some of the previously established EU, but they're reworking things a bit for the purposes of the show.  In the new Rebels Recon Dave Filoni said that he wanted to showcase the A-Wing and B-Wing more since he felt they didn't get showcased so much in the OT.  And he as well as Pablo Hidalgo put forth that perhaps the X-Wings and Y-Wings were utilized by other Rebel units.  Given what we see of the Rebel fleet in ANH, and then in TESB, and finally in ROTJ you get the sense that there are Rebel units from all over the galaxy.  That methodology seems to play out somewhat logically.

Picked up the Guavian Enforcer at a Walgreens of all places.  Glad to see they're still selling the TFA 6" figures for $19.99 each. 

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