Author Topic: Star Wars Customs (Choppers)  (Read 5248 times)

Offline DoctorPadawan

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #30 on: July 21, 2005, 05:17 PM »
Just a little observation on how WM does tend to order things to appeal to their "southern base" and generalize it to their other stores all across America.

(Let me preface this by saying that I am in no way disparaging Southerners, who are frequently some of the most well-mannered people you could meet; I'm just drawing a distinction between two things and WM's selective moral standards)

Back around 2000 or so, Playmates' "World of Springfield" action figure line for "The Simpsons" had just gotten underway.  WM, Target, TRU, and KayBee were all supporting the line.  That is, until Wal-Mart turned down the second assortment altogether due to character inclusion.

Why did Wal-Mart do this?  Well, this assortment included action figures of Smithers and Barney.  WM's main problem was with Smithers (because an action figure will turn you gay, apparently), but to a lesser extent, they weren't happy with an action figure based on the town drunk either.  WM declined to carry the assortment, and Target, TRU, and Kay Bee picked up the slack.  Also around this time, WM (along with the other retailers) were responsible for holding off the release of the "Moe's Bar" interactive playset, for the reasons that they did not want to promote alcohol use to children.  Remember that because we'll be bringing that up later.

Strangely enough, even though Smithers, Barney, and Moe's Bar were not acceptable to WM, Moe himself was, and so when another wave shipped several months later, Moe was available on Wal-Mart toy shelves, complete with a mug of beer.  I thought this was silly at the time (they won't carry the addict, but they will carry the provider), but it would get even sillier four years or so later.

A month or two ago I walked through the WM toy section and my eyes bugged out.  Like them or not, the Blue Collar Comedy Tour people have dolls, and Wal-Mart is carrying them.  What got me was that there is a doll of Ron White, whose entire persona has to do with him being a raging alcoholic (and it seems like it's a bit more than a character unless that's apple juice he's drinking on stage), and here we have not only a doll, but a TALKING Ron White doll done in the teddy bear style, being sold right alongside Playskool toys in the little kids' aisle. 

I immediately flashed back to the Moe's Bar and Barney fiasco with the WOS line a few years earlier, and it just proved to me that promoting alcoholism to children is bad when the people portrayed as the alcoholics are cartoon characters, but it's all well and good when it's a real person glorifying it on television.  So, yeah, WM picks and chooses based on the sensibilities of its southern-based consumers, and the rest of the country's Wal-Marts have to deal with it.




Offline dafoo

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #31 on: July 21, 2005, 07:06 PM »
Let's buy Hasbro and did it RIGHT! =p

TV is going downhill, has been for a long time.  It is speeding up though.  Like a snowball downhill.

I noticed the speed up with AMC started showing movies from the 1990's. What the heck is that? That's now classic!  How many times must you Play "Independence day?"  That, and they added commercials.

Alas.  History channel is still good.  And SciFi Friday!
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Offline proudfather2

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #32 on: July 24, 2005, 11:37 AM »
Choppers and other crazy lines are not my thing or even most of yours I'd wager. Here's the thing, I don't think there supposed to be, entirely anyway. Let's face it, they have to find a way to keep interest going in the Star Wars toys and broadeneing their horizons is one sure-fire way to do just that. So, in short, if they have to make ten goofy Star Wars lines to keep my action figure line alive a little longer, I m all for it.

Offline MetalJedi

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #33 on: July 24, 2005, 12:58 PM »
Words cannot express how bad this is. I think they need collectors working for Hasbro not the yes men they have now.
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Offline ruiner

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #34 on: July 25, 2005, 05:28 PM »
DP - I never heard that story before about Playmates and WM - do you know this first-hand or is it folklore?


Offline Pete_Fett

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #35 on: July 25, 2005, 05:41 PM »
That story about WalMart not supporting the WoS line due to certain "objectionable characters, not in line with the standards of the WalMart corporation" is indeed true.

This is one of many stories where WalMart has gotten the reputation of being able to control a toy line completely simply due to their market-share across the country.

It's a shame really.
Peter

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Offline dafoo

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #36 on: July 25, 2005, 05:54 PM »
Isn't Wal-Mart's M.O. to build up a company such that they are like totally dependant on WM for their product sales, and then yank the rug out from under them?  Demanding cost reductions or they'll drop their products on the next go around.

I've heard much rumor and gnashing of teeth on that one
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Offline DoctorPadawan

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #37 on: July 25, 2005, 06:54 PM »
Quote
DP - I never heard that story before about Playmates and WM - do you know this first-hand or is it folklore?

Well, it's kind of a little of both.  I never was a big WOS collector (I have a few figures of characters I really like), but I have some friends who were about that line the way we generally are about Star Wars.  I'm actually surprised that more people don't know about it, as it was one of those instances where Wal-Mart flexed its giant retail muscle and did some damage to a line in its infancy.  There was a big stink about it at the time it happened, at least in the Simpsons collecting circuit, and that was part of what fueled the Ebay idiots to claim that Smithers had been (you guessed it) "RECALLED OMG VHTF" due to Wal-Mart not getting him. 

I actually really wanted a Smithers figure (I already had Burns and to me, it's like having a really old Threepio without a gay R2-D2), and if it hadn't been for a friend with a Target nearby, I never would have gotten one.  I'm not too sure if WM refused other case assortments in the future, but I do know that Target, KB, and TRU supported the line (more space, more figures, more frequent ordering) WAY more than WM did.  In fact, I never got my Troy McClure figure at all because WM just quit ordering them altogether at that point.

As for Wal-Mart, I could write a book on their shady business practices and how they've driven certain companies into filing for bankruptcy and watered down the quality of other products (Levi's Jeans) to suit their own low price-points.  If you want to do some quick reading on the subject, go to Wal-Mart Watch and you'll find a lot of stories and reports on the Cult of Sam that will make you shake your head and realize just why the WM employees all look like they're being forced to work there at gunpoint.  Oh, and then come back here and I'll tell you all about the "Squiggley Dance."  :)

Offline Gatillo

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #38 on: July 26, 2005, 11:01 AM »
So these must be the Anchorhead County Choopers series. :P

I don't even know what the hell to say about this chopper nonsense.  I tell you what though, it is clear that Hasbro wants to take their huge quarterly profits from the SW line and flush them down the toilet on ideas that won't even generate enough sales to save the rest of the crap made outside the SW line that is stamped Hasbro.

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Offline Morgbug

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #39 on: July 26, 2005, 09:50 PM »
blah, blah, blah.

That's not directed at anyone here, but I don't feel like wasting my energy and annoying anyone with another lengthy post about my general (overwhelming?) displeasure with what Hasbro is currently doing to this line.  Ergo the blahs, you all know what I'd say more or less.

BTW, has anyone ascertained whether these will be bump'n'go cycles ::) >:(
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Offline Pete_Fett

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #40 on: July 26, 2005, 11:13 PM »
OMG - I've been laughing for the past five minutes at the prospect of a "Bump-n-Go Darth Vader on Evil Sith Chopper"

*sigh*
Peter

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Offline Reid

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #41 on: September 17, 2005, 12:38 PM »
This sounds like the rumored Star Wars version of "Easy Rider"  ;D

Offline Jeff

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #42 on: October 18, 2005, 09:25 AM »
Because no one demanded them!  Star Wars Choppers!

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Offline Mikey D

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #43 on: October 18, 2005, 09:31 AM »
The idea was horrible to begin with and now that I see them, they're even more horrible. 
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Offline Jayson

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Re: Star Wars "Choppers"?
« Reply #44 on: October 18, 2005, 09:36 AM »
MY EYES!!!!! I'M BLIND!!!  8)

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