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.

Pixar Lithographs from The Disney Store

I wish I had a complete set of lithographs representing the entire Pixar catalogue of films, but at least I have these three. The Disney Store did a great job with the selection of prints.

Let’s have a look. First, we have the original Toy Story from 1995:

Pixar Envelope Pixar Print Pixar Frame

This lithograph would have been released for the 1996 video release. The above pictures show the protective envelope, the lithograph itself, and the back side of the lithograph frame.

Next, we have a wonderful image from A Bug’s Life (1996):

Pixar Envelope Pixar Print Pixar Frame

Again, this lithograph would have been released in 1999 to commemorate the release of the film on video.

Last, but not least, is Toy Story 2 (1999):

Pixar EnvelopePixar PrintPixar Frame

This was released in 2000.

And that concludes my incomplete collection of Pixar lithographs from The Disney Store.

If you have a bit more time and would like to see more of my Pixar merchandise, check out these keychains and minis figurines.

The Grasshopper and the Ants Record-Reader

From WDP comes a Capitol Records release of a truly entertaining Silly Symphony: The Grasshopper and the Ants. Released in 1934, this was one of Aesop’s fables, reimagined by the animators of Walt Disney.

Silly Symphonies Record 001

A Capitol Record-Reader was a cherished item for any child of the pre-TV era. They came with two double-sided 78″ (unbreakable) records which enabled the child to hear the story being read by announcer Don Wilson while reading along by turning pages when the sound of a bell was heard.

Grasshopper and the Ants 003

Pinto Colvig was the voice of the grasshopper, whom you might better remember as the first voice actor behind Goofy. His distinctive voice is clearly heard here, along with Goofy’s signature song ‘The World Owes Me a Living‘. But the Grasshopper sung it first! Goofy wouldn’t warble the tune until 1935 in the Disney Short entitled On Ice.

The record-reader is filled with many illustrated full-color pages, such as these:

Grasshopper and the Ants 004 Grasshopper and the Ants 005

Grasshopper and the Ants 006 Grasshopper and the Ants 007

Just as an aside, the ants sound a lot like Chip and Dale. And if you think about it, maybe this silly symphony was on the minds of the animators at Pixar when they thought up A Bug’s Life. There we have the similar theme of industrious ants storing up food for the winter, and lazy grasshoppers who just want to have fun, leaving the hard work of preparing for the winter to others. Of course, the outcome is different, but the bones are there!

Grasshopper and the Ants 002

Walt Disney Treasures released a complete DVD collection of the Silly Symphonies on December 4th, 2001.

Grasshopper and the Ants 009

You can find The Grasshopper and the Ants on disc one under the heading of Fables and Fairy Tales. Or… watch it below:

I found this record-reader at a local antique shop and was able to purchase it for just $30.00 CAN. It is in near-mint condition with only natural yellowing of the paper. It was released in 1949, so a little yellowing is to be expected, and I doubt a better copy exists! There are some scratches on the records, but none that cause the records to skip.

Here is an image of the original poster for the theatrical release in 1934:

Theatrical Poster

If you’d like to further research this particular Silly Symphony, you can read a condensed version in the 360-page coffee table book Walt Disney’s Mickey and the Gang: Classic Stories In Verse (2005, Gemstone, ISBN: 1888472065). On pages 14 and 15, you can read the history of the film, and of its place as the first installment of the Good Housekeeping series of full-page illustrated versions of the classic Disney films (1934-1944).

GH Grasshopper Page 001

Each version of this fable is different, although all rendered by Disney animators and artists. The most detail is found in the film version, of course, but one detail is added in the record-reader: The Queen offers the Grasshopper a chance to join the ant colony and work along with them, living with them through the long winter. She does not do this in the theatrical version. He refuses, is reminded of his poor choice later, where he admits his mistake. The Good Housekeeping version strips the tale of almost all details, leaving only the basic moral in tact.

Disney-Pixar Comics Treasury

I was going to be away from home for a while and wanted something to take with me to read. So I went to my local Chapters and found this book in the discount section:

Comics Treasury 001     Comics Treasury 017

HarperCollins Publishers Inc. 2014

It contains 14 adaptions of the Pixar films with 1 extra bonus story involving Wall-E. I’ve read about half so far and have found a pattern developing, even though different writers are responsible for some of the titles.

Comics Treasury 002     Comics Treasury 003     Comics Treasury 004

Being as I know the stories inside-out, I can follow the edited versions presented in the book reasonably well. But for first-time readers, many panels would not make sense, as crucial details are left out. It is obvious that these adaptions were not penned by seasoned comic book writers, individuals with a consummate knowledge of conveying a bigger story into the sometimes limiting space of comic book boxes.

Comics Treasury 005     Comics Treasury 006     Comics Treasury 007

Now is as good a time as any to mention the bonus story entitled Wall-E: Recharge. As you would expect, there is no dialogue to help you understand what is happening, and because of the aforementioned inexperience of the writers with this medium the story is all-but incomprehensible!

Comics Treasury 010

Comics Treasury 008     Comics Treasury 009     Comics Treasury 011

The best part of this treasury is the artwork! Every artist brought a great sense of the original story to each title with some truly breath-taking visuals. As a comic book fan from way back, this was a treat to read based only on the pictures (yup, I’m a picture guy).

Comics Treasury 012     Comics Treasury 013     Comics Treasury 014

Not to be too tough on this treasury, it’s still a fun read with good work done by all of the creative talent involved. I would definitely recommend it to any Disney parent who would like a nice book of bedtime stories to share with their little Disney fans-to-be!

Comics Treasury 015     Comics Treasury 016

Theming: Heimlich’s Chew Chew Train

All aboard for a slow-moving fun-filled romp with eating noises and puns galore! Yup, it’s time to visit a little corner of Disney’s California Adventure for a ride on Heimlich’s Chew Chew Train:

CA 62

CA 60     CA 91

Watermelon left out in the California sun. Yum!

CA 95     CA 98

Cupcakes and Candy Corn? Not very nutritious, Heimlich!

CA 94

Animal Crackers? You can still do better, Heimlich!

CA 93

There we go! Nutrition in a gooey sauce.

So have you taken this tasty trip around the track with Heimlich to see and smell half-eaten food? If not, you may never see your favorite foods the same way again!

Enjoy or Avoid: Flik’s Flyers

We didn’t get to ride this little attraction while visiting Disney’s California Adventure last year, but I thought the theming was deserving of notice:

CA 74

CA 67  CA 68

The concept behind A Bug’s Life is that everything bugs use to create their habitat is taken from the garbage of humans or the plants around them. So Flik’s Flyers is a cobbled-together contraption. I liked the food boxes used for the ‘baskets’:

 CA 69  CA 72

CA 70  CA 71

Casey Jr. Cookies is a nice nod to a certain Fantasyland attraction

CA 73

Do your children enjoy or avoid this attraction?

Pixar Vinymation Topper: Heimlich

Guest Contributor: Nick Maglio

I bought this Pixar Vinylmation Series 1 Heimlich  topper for my wife, who has a nice little collection of the ravenous little caterpillar from “A Bug’s Life”.

I bought him from the disneystore.com
By Disney artist Maria Clapsis.
As soon as we set him down, he headed for one of my wife’s plants.
His extra arms add a little to his height, so he is 3 3/4 inches instead of the usual 3 inch Vinyl size.
While he’s checking out the plant, let’s open up the boxed figure.
A clown. Why did it have to be a clown?  As I’ve written previously, I am not particularly fond of clowns. Chuckles here is from “Toy Story 3”.
I saw “Toy Story 3” in the theater when it was released in 2010, and, honestly, don’t remember Chuckles. I think I must have blocked him out subconsciously.
By artist Thomas Scott
Back to Heimlich. Oh, dear, better get him out of there before he devours the whole plant!

Heimlich Happy Meal Toys

These Heimlich figures are courtesy of McDonald’s in the form of Happy Meal Toys. I say ‘courtesy’, but I had to buy the Happy Meal to get the toys!


It came in a VHS video case, and as the faux leaf he’s sitting on looks like a puzzle piece, I take it that he is part of a series that fits together when complete.

MFG. For McD Corp, Copyright Disney/Pixar

This next one has Heimlich on the move:

.

Wind him up, and off he goes!


From his accent, I believe Heimlich is of Germanic descent. So, to end this post we will simply say: Auf Wiedersehen!

Two Heimlich Plush


Would ‘Stuffed Heimlich’ be a redundant statement? (See, Heimlich eats a lot, until he’s, you know, stuffed!) Tap-tap, is this thing on?

Today, I share a couple of stuffed, or plush, Heimlichs from the Pixar film, “A Bug’s Life’. The first one is a fairly large stuffed figure:

Obviously it’s from the Disney Store, but I have no other information, as the tags have been cut off.

This next stuffed Heimlich is much smaller, and has a plastic face:

     

Like the bigger figure, the tags have been removed, and there is no indication as to where it came from.


For more Heimlich, please visit this previous post featuring a very squishy Heimlich.

Squishy Heimlich from A Bug’s Life

What, you may ask, is a squishy Heimlich? I say this is a squishy Heimlich:

Heimlich is from Pixar’s “A Bug’s Life” released in 1998.


What draws many to Heimlich the caterpillar is his adorable accent. His love of food for also endears him to all of us! In fact here he is going in for the kill now!

He is rubber, and filled with some sort of, well, squishy material. Sadly, 14 years on, the squishy material has hardened into a ball inside of Heimlich’s belly, and he is not nearly as much fun to squeeze anymore.

Made by 4 Kidz Inc. for Disney/Pixar


Here is another squishy Heimlich. This is a keychain. I think. A REALLY big keychain. I have no idea who would need such a large key chain, but, as I don’t know what else the hook would be used for, I’m calling it a keychain:

Alas, he suffers from the same fate as the larger figure, as he has lost his squishiness.

Also made by 4 Kidz

To see two great Heimlich plushes, check out the post entitled, appropriately, Two Heimlich Plush.