Anna from FROZEN Disney Infinity Figure

The Disney Infinity gaming system is no more but merchandise from the line is still lingering on store shelves. Drastic price reductions makes filling out your 1.0/2.0/3.0 play pieces easier on the pocket book, restricted only by the remaining stock. I just picked up the last Anna 1.0 figure (from FROZEN) at my local Toys-R-Us.

Anna Figure Front

Ready for Action!

I am on record for really hating the Disney movie, FROZEN. It failed on so many levels, but the one shining light that broke through the disappointment was the character of Anna! Rather than making a fuss over The Snow Queen, Elsa, I believe Anna to be the one true hero of the movie and the one that should be looked to as a role model.

Anna Figure Package FrontAnna Figure Package Back

Packaging

Elsa may have the cool powers, but it’s Anna who has the responsible, loving, go-getting attitude that should be admired.

Anna Figure Side left

Rope at the Ready

Actually, Anna does have a ‘power’ in the Disney Infinity universe. Her climbing hook conquers heights and helps her swing past danger.

Anna Figure Back

Practical Hair Braid

I love the detail of Anna’s costume. The little flowers around her skirt are beautiful!

Anna Figure Side right

What’s in the Bag?

Nice detailing on the boots, too! Each Disney Infinity play piece is mounted on a base, usually specific to the character. Here, Anna is standing on a snow flake.

Each figure comes with a card with a code to unlock on-line extras:

Anna Figure Card

Code on Back

I haven’t checked, but one may assume that such codes are useless now that Disney has abandoned the franchise.

So are/were you a Disney Infinity fan? How do you feel about Disney’s decision to discontinue the gaming system after only three years?

For more gaming figures, see Yoda and Han Solo, Darth Vader and Baloo, and my picks for Disney’s Top 5 Worst Decisions, which includes ending the Disney Infinity gaming system.

Viewing Eggs featuring Finding Dory and Cars 3

I was walking through Sears the other day and happened upon a cashier corridor, a switch-back lane you have to travel down to reach the cash register. This is something stores use to entice you with impulse buys as the corridor is filled with low priced items you didn’t know you needed but now must have. At the entrance to this fast lane to poordom, I found two series of Viewing Eggs.

One set featured Marvel comic characters, and the other featured Disney films. They were on sale for only $1.00 each, so I just had to splurge and buy them… impulsively.

But wait, you say! What in the world are Viewing Eggs? Behold:

Viewing Eggs Front

Finding Dory & Cars 3

There was also one Viewing Egg left that featured the Disney movie, Frozen. I didn’t pick it up for two good reasons: 1) I hate the movie. 2) It was missing the outer wrapper.

Viewing Eggs Back

Viewing Eggs Cars 3 FrontViewing Eggs Cars 3 Back

These Viewing Eggs work much like any other toy viewer. You look through a hole in one side, hold the egg towards a strong light source, and push the top button to toggle around the images. In this case, there are twelve to see.

Viewing Eggs Clicker

Peek-a-Boo!

But there is still more to enjoy here! These viewers also give you candy and a sticker.

Viewing Eggs Finding Dory Naked

The Surprise is Underneath

A small package of jelly beans and one themed sticker:

Fish Food

Viewing Eggs Cars 3 Open

Ka-chow-down!

It was all but impossible to get clear shots of the scenes inside the eggs, but I did my best with the Cars 3 version:

Viewing Eggs Cars 3 View 1Viewing Eggs Cars 3 View 4Viewing Eggs Cars 3 View 3Viewing Eggs Cars 3 View 2

Trust me, the scenes look better when using the naked eye! But I hope you get the general idea. The Cars 3 had a more graphic look to the images while the Finding Dory images where more like screen-captures from the movie.

Like me, do you like finding strange and wonderful things in unexpected places?

For more egg-shaped fun with the Finding Dory characters, check out this post featuring Kinder Surprise!

Beta Baymax 6″ Action Figure by Bandai

We first met our Personal Healthcare Provider in his big, white, marshmallow form. Later, during the action sequences of the film, Big Hero 6, we saw him in his red Battle Suit. But in-between these variations was the Beta Baymax, or blue suit, Baymax:

Beta Baymax Front

Out of Shape, but Ready!

This suit, along with his new Karate skills, proved to be insufficient to overcome the villain. So a new and improved version was needed. It is that version that saved the day!

But I really like the Beta Baymax version:

Beta Baymax Package FrontBeta Baymax Package Back

Packaging

This great action figure was brought to us by the Bandai America toy company. They have created an entire line of Big Hero 6 toys that you can check out here.

Bandai was founded in 1950. In the 1960s Bandai expanded to include export sales. Since the 1980s, Bandai has become the leading toy company of Japan, and to this day, has the main toy licenses in Japan to popular properties including The Power Rangers.

Beta Baymax Back

Big Hero 6 is the fifty-fourth film in the Disney Animated Canon and the sixth film in the so-called Disney Revival era. It was the first Disney animated feature film to star characters from Marvel Entertainment, which Disney acquired in 2009.

The film was released on November 7th, 2014 in the US and Canada.

Beta Baymax Profile

Beta Baymax is 6″ tall and has limited posability. His head swivels, his arms raise and bend:

Beta Baymax Posable 1Beta Baymax Posable 2

Feel the Power!

COOL FACTS:

  • This is only the seventh non-musical animated film in the Disney animated canon, following The Black Cauldron, The Rescuers Down Under, Dinosaur, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Treasure Planet, and Wreck-It Ralph.
  • Big Hero 6 is the first Walt Disney Animation feature film to be inspired by a comic book series (of the same name) as opposed to a traditional fairy-tale, fictional book or an entirely original concept.
  • According to Big Hero 6‘s character design supervisor, Jin Kim, one of the main goals of this movie was to introduce multiracial characters to allow everyone to feel some familiarities about their own culture and introduce the world’s racial diversity.
    • Hiro Hamada and Tadashi Hamada are Japanese-American.
    • Go Go Tomago is Korean.
    • Honey Lemon is Latina.
    • Wasabi is African-American.
    • Fred is Caucasian.

I feel much safer now that Beta Baymax is guarding my home!

Magical Blogorail: Best Live Entertainment – Epcot

Disney has always plussed the guest experience with a wonderful variety of live entertainment around the parks. Epcot is perhaps unique in that it offers colorful selections from around the real world around the World Showcase!

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Orange Loop. Today we are sharing some of the best live entertainment at the Disney Parks.


I’d like to share some of the live entertainment acts that I have seen around Epcot over the years. Just like the other attractions in the parks, these acts have come and gone in an ever-changing line-up of talent.

Live Entertainment Morocco

MO’ROCKIN

This was a 6-person Moroccan musical act that played in the Morocco Pavilion. The group was often accompanied by a belly dancer. Unfortunately, Disney decided to discontinue this act and it played for the last time on September 27th, 2014.

Live Entertainment Extra

Sometimes this version of Mo’Rockin would be playing in the Morocco Pavilion.

Live Entertainment Off Kilter

Off Kilter

Off Kilter is a high-energy Celtic rock band founded by Jamie Holton, bagpiper, in 1996. The band is a unique blend of traditional Celtic tunes and songs with a rock twist, popular covers arranged with a Celtic rock feel, and original songs. Instruments consist of bagpipes, Irish whistles, electric guitar, bass, fiddle, drums and vocals. The band played for 18 years as one of the most popular bands at Walt Disney World in Florida (Canadian Pavilion, Epcot), and currently tours the country performing at many different venues.

Live Entertainment Quartet

Quartet

I wish I could remember which country these four entertainers represented! They were quite good.

So, I’ve shared acts that aren’t in Epcot anymore. I include them to show the variety of acts that have been offered over the years.

The official lineup now is as follows:

  • British Revolution (English groups cover band)
  • JAMMitors (Percussion group)
  • Jeweled Dragon Acrobats (Chinese acrobatics)

Live Entertainment Acrobats

  • Mariachi Cobre (Mexican band)
  • Matsuriza (Japanese drumming)
  • Rose & Crown Pub Musician (Piano)
  • Voices of Liberty (American vocal group)
  • Wies N Buam (German Oomph band)

This is by no means an exhaustive list. You can check out this official Disney site for show times and other entertainment offered.

I hope this whets your appetite for live entertainment at Epcot!

For more must see live entertainment at Disney,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Orange  | Best Live Entertainment at Disney Loop:

‘Walt Disney’s Disneyland’ Book Review

Walt Disney was a master of promotion. His Disneyland television show was basically a weekly commercial advertising his upcoming theme park. And in that theme park, he continued this self-promotion with the release, each year, of souvenir booklets, pamphlets, and hardcover books, all designed to keep guests dreaming about Disneyland long after the visit was over!

This post is a review of one such publication:

Walt Disney Book Cover

This 70-page book has no ISBN number and no publisher but does reference Walt Disney Productions. It was printed in the U.S.A. possibly in February of 1971. However, the copyright date is 1969.

Walt Disney Book Introduction

This book was first published in 1964 and was re-released every year afterwards. For how long, I don’t know. Slight changes to this publication likely would have been made as new attractions were added to the park and others removed.

Walt Disney Book Jungle Cruise

The book is filled with beautiful two-page spreads of popular attractions. The Jungle Cruise, above,  is a personal favorite!

Walt Disney Book Skyway

One of the best reasons for purchasing such an old book is because of the history it contains. Attractions like The Skyway, now gone (but rumored to be returning to Walt Disney World), are fun to see again!

Walt Disney Book Collage

Young and Old Enjoy Disneyland

Walt Disney Book Panorama

A panoramic shot like this one shows both the Columbia and the Mark Twain. Would you like to be sitting on one of those benches right now?

Walt Disney Book Riverboat

Beautiful!

Walt Disney Book Small World

The book covers many of the classic attractions with colorful pictures and informative text.

The book actually starts with a brief history of the construction of Disneyland. It then covers each of the cardinal lands in turn: Fantasyland; Adventureland; Frontierland; Tomorrowland; and of course, Main Street U.S.A.

Next it covers the first and second decades of the park in their own sections. New Orleans Square and the updated Tomorrowland are also featured. The book ends with a ‘what is to come’ page featuring the soon-to-be opened Walt Disney World.

COOL FACTOR: 4.5/5

For the casual Disney fan, this book would be a fun read. For the diehard fan, it is an essential read of the history of Disneyland!

I would have given it a higher rating if not for the fact that it is merely a reprint of earlier, essentially the same, publications. But even so, I highly recommend it!

I picked it up at a thrift store for just $5.00 CAN.

If Florida is more your destination, why not check out my review of the book Disney’s Adventure Guide to Florida. It’s got pictures, too!

Lady and the Tramp II – Scamp Lithographs from The Disney Store

Here we have another direct-to-video sequel of a Disney classic. Scamp’s Adventure centers on Lady and the Tramp’s only son, Scamp, who longs for freedom from house rules and desires to become a “wild dog”.

Adventure ensues, as the title suggests, with a happy ending for all. In case you’re wondering, Lady and the Tramp had four puppies, named Annette, Collette, Danielle and Scamp.

Let’s have a look at the lithographs released by The Disney Store to commemorate the release of this movie:

Scamp Folder Cover

Both Sides of the Tracks

I vaguely remember this movie but do remember that I wasn’t particularly impressed. Most direct-to-video releases seemed to be rushed and merely produced to generate revenue, not memorable stories.

What is worth remembering is this beautiful folder:

Scamp Folder Unfolded

Which Side Are You From?

This is a basic grass-is-always-greener story with dogs. I guess we could say that Scamp has a strong urge to piddle in someone else’s lawn!

Of course, there is a love element to the story, as seen in the recreation of the iconic spaghetti scene from the original classic:

Scamp Print SpagettiScamp Moonlight BarkScamp Escape from PoundScamp Togetherness

The Plot in 4 Lithographs

My recommendation would be to skip this effort. But if you could pick up a set of these lithographs, that would be worthwhile!

Scamp Folder Back

Back of Presentation Folder

I also have a great set of Disney Store lithographs featuring the original cast of Lady and the Tramp. Definitely worth a sniff!

Cars 3 Diecast Characters from Pixar

Pixar has been pretty regular with the milking schedule for the Cash Cow that is the CARS franchise. The first movie was a sensation, the second movie had to grow on you, and who knows how Cars 3 will be received?

But already the merchandise is filling toy shelves! What I noticed right away is that all of the old characters are simply being enclosed in Cars 3 packaging and sold as if they were new. They aren’t. No new poses or paint jobs for the most part.

So I kept looking and found a few new characters that were interesting enough to add to my Radiator Springs diecast collection. The first being:

Cars 3 Jackson Storm Face

Jackson Storm

Here is the story synopsis for the movie: Blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician with her own plan to win, and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage!

Mr. Storm appears to be the main competitor that McQueen will have to face.

Cars 3 Jackson Package FrontCars 3 Jackson Package Back

Rather Generic Packaging

Cars 3 Jackson Storm ProfileCars 3 Jackson Storm Bumper

Tough Styling

So just who is this guy? Jackson Storm is fast, sleek and ready to race. A frontrunner in the next generation of racers, Storm’s quiet confidence and cocky demeanor are off-putting—but his unmatched speed threatens to redefine the sport. Trained on high-tech simulators that are programmed to perfect technique and maximize velocity, Jackson Storm is literally built to be unbeatable—and he knows it.

Well, okay then!

The next racer to challenge McQueen for Piston Cup supremacy is Tim Treadless:

Cars 3 Tim Treadless Face

A Face Only a Mother Could Love

Cars 3 Tim Package FrontCars 3 Tim Package Back

Same Uninspired Packaging

Cars 3 Tim Treadless ProfileCars 3 Tim Treadless Bumper

Very Nice Paint Job

Not much is known about this character as yet. He isn’t even mentioned on Disney Wiki in the list of characters for the movie. He’s probably the right-hand car or at least a good friend of Jackson Storm.

Next we have another character, who although mentioned on Disney Wiki, isn’t given a bio:

Cars 3 Smokey Face

Smokey

Cars 3 Smokey Package FrontCars 3 Smokey Package Back

Seriously. Just a Cars 3 Logo?

Cars 3 Smokey ProfileCars 3 Smokey Bumper

Just on first blush, I’d have to say that this guy looks like a counterpart for Mater.

Cars 3 Smokey Side

I Just Love Old Trucks!

Cars 3 Smokey Top

Will He be Friend or Foe?

Cars 3 hits theaters on June 16th, 2017. I’ll be in the audience hoping that this third trip to the motor pool will be a successful one. I’m sure the toys will be! These diecast models were made by Mattel.

For more racing fun, check out an issue of Collecting Toys magazine that features slot racers.

P. T. Flea Diecast Character from Pixar’s Cars

It’s a given that none of us usually likes a flea. But that changes when they’re performing in a circus. Then. They. Are. Amazing! To go one better, what if the flea is the Ringmaster? Well, get ready to cheer for the one and only P. T. Flea:

P. T. Flea FrontP. T. Flea Right SideP. T. Flea BackP. T. Flea Left Side

Ya-da-dada-dada-da-da-dah-dah!

In the 1998 Pixar movie A Bug’s Life we meet our diminutive promoter as he tries to wrangle a less-than-successful group of circus performers.

We next meet him in a brief cameo, in the guise of a car no less, in the 2006 Pixar movie Cars. In both movies, he is voiced by Pixar’s lucky charm, John Ratzenberger.

P. T. Flea Package FrontP. T. Flea Package Back

Contained for your pet’s protection!

Okay, I had to let him out for this post, didn’t I? As far as I know, no one was bitten while this post was being prepared. I’m not sure about the animals.

P. T. Flea Undercarriage

Made by Mattel

P.T. Flea is a Nimbly Company No-See-Um LX that is painted brown. I don’t know what that is, nor do I know what the ‘Z S D’ on his license plate is supposed to represent.

I guess a few mysteries in life are fun!

For more diecast fun from the world of Cars, check out Rusty and Dusty Rust-eze from an earlier post.

Lilo & Stitch Lithographs from The Disney Store

Disney’s Lilo & Stitch was a surprise hit when it debuted in 2002. The little blue ‘dog’ found its way into everyone’s heart, but most of all into the heart of a girl named Lilo.

With a story that features the value of family, this movie became an instant classic! The Disney Store released a wonderful set of lithographs to commemorate the release of the film on video:

Stitch Folder

Like some of these releases, this one featured an inventive cover folder. When opened, it yields a nice Hawaiian panorama.

Let’s lift the first flap:

Stitch Folder Open

Lifting the first flap reveals a beautiful pastel sky and a surprised Stitch being kissed by Lilo. Now there are two flaps that open sideways. Below is how the folder looks from the back when fully opened:

Stitch Folder Back

And next we see how the folder looks from the front when fully opened:

Stitch Folder Front

Surf’s Up!

The prints tuck in behind the sand in the middle. And now for a look at the prints themselves:

Stitch Print OneStitch Print TwoStitch Print Three

Did you enjoy Lilo & Stitch when you first viewed it? Has it become one of your Disney favorites?

For more fun with Lilo and Stitch, check out a WDCC figurine featuring Stitch, and a Disney Animator’s Collection doll featuring Lilo.

Mini Eggs Globe Candy Bank by Nestle

Being as we will be taking a tour around the world shortly, we should stock up on some energy food. I suggest a package of Nestle Mini Eggs:

Mini Eggs Packaging

Smart Choice!

Now just where might we find a package of this tasty treat? How about inside a vintage 1990’s tin Globe:

Mini Eggs Container Open

Empty!

A package of candy, like the one pictured above, would have been stuffed inside the tin. It’s probably just as well that it’s missing, being as candy from 1990 might be a tad stale by now!

Mini Eggs Container Base

But fortunately this little globe has other uses, both educational, and practical. Apart from displaying an edited version of our earth, it also doubles as a piggy bank:

Mini Eggs Globe Bank Slot

Larger coins only, please!

This could be a fun way for children to learn about geography while saving up for a trip.

Mickey appears around the world in different ethnic garb. Let’s have a look:

Mini Eggs Globe AsiaMini Eggs Globe Pacific OceanMini Eggs Globe Atlantic OceanMini Eggs Globe Europe

The Globe rotates on the base

Mini Eggs Globe Stand

I hope you learned something today. I learned that the planet is smaller than I thought!

Check out this other globe featured in an earlier post. It is covered with even more Disney characters.