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Discussion in 'Muppet Merchandise' started by ElecMayhem, Oct 24, 2011.
I second a request for more gonzo merch
Animal was in the main 3 since the 90's. It was Kermit, Animal, Piggy, and then maybe Fozzie and or Gonzo. Since then, Beaker and the Chef managed to become very big hits. I have a Beaker shirt from not too long ago, I also had an Electric Mayhem one (wore it out, thought... shoulda got a second one). They are making strides to an extent, but they just go 3 steps forward and 2 steps back. Animal does sell to a more general causal fan public... but I'm sure Chef and Beaker shirts would do wonders.
I did see a Gonzo back at J C Penny like a year ago, but they only had Mediums so I couldn't get one.
Up until this new movie, general consumer interest for Muppet merchandised characters has been as follows:
Beaker (3rd because whenever he's available, he sells out)
(of course, this is when they are all placed side-by-side. Piggy is an industry unto herself, but sells less when pegged next to others. Muppet merchandise sales are sluggish without a Kermit option too.)
Unfortunately Scooter and Rowlf will have to take some extra time to catch on in order for products to be made of them these days. It'll happen. It's all about selling units and as their roles increase their product needs will too. Remember how long it took for Pepe merchandise and he was everywhere!
I know, and that's what i'm saying. It just seems odd to me, but it makes perfect sense. I just wouldn't consider him to be that "main", but maybe it's just because I prefer Floyd. Animal appeals to a wide audience, so they put him everywhere.
It also seems a bit strange that Pepe get picked over Muppets that have been around for a while longer, but nobody's complaining.
Animal is clearly the most mainstream favorite. Piggy seems to be used mostly as a girl's character. But Beaker clearly does quite well and the Chef has some of that same kind of popularity.
Rowlf could work, Scooter's kinda a gamble (but we're seeing more of him on stuff lately... he was at least on a pair of pajama pants). Pepe seemed to really hit in the 2000 era, but he wasn't on all that much... sure, he was added to posters and a couple things like that. But mainly there was 2 Palisades figures, a lookalike Push Puppet, a Jack in the Box promo figure and nothing much else until Disney's Pepe Plush.
I think Europe "gets" the Muppets way more than Americans do...at least in some aspects of appreciation and definitely merchandise. So much of the Swedish Chef merchandise(many different plushes, wearable items, figurines, etc) have come from Europe. Heck I have about 7 different Swedish Chef plushes from Europe(Dutch company, Mcdonalds UK, Mcdonalds Germany, Igel, etc)
Yeah Animal definitely is the Elmo of Muppet merchandise. Remember in the late 90's and early 2000's when they *gasp* had Rizzo stuff? I have a lunchbox with Rizzo on it, and I know I saw a backpack with him on it, as well as crane/midway plushes.
People love Rowlf, a shame he's been on the backburner but they need to make merch of him.
Let's not kid ourselves...the Muppet "merchandise" selection this holiday season was terrible. We got more and better quality Muppet merch when the Muppets were languishing without much visibility.
And WHY THE HECK does Disney parks get wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy better merchandise than the Disney mall stores? Is the house of mouse that seriously idiotic?
Those star wars figures, t shirts, etc from the parks stores blow away anything currently in store shelves Muppet wise(not that there's anything muppet wise in buyable form to speak of)
Too much of any franchise now rides on how well a movie does. But even with big blockbusters, I see nothing but unsellable, unwanted, over ordered stuff get cleared out in a year period... lesser movies, much sooner.
I'd consider the movie a moderate success... it made more than any of the other kid's films that were released same time, and the Disney store merchandise is reportedly flying off shelves. We'll clearly see some more stuff, even if it's smaller sizes of the plush, once the DVD hits.
This entire project was a relaunch/first step into saturating the market with more Muppet stuff in the future. But I still think there should have been at LEAST a Disney Store figure set and general retail Kermits and Animals. I don't see why the Pez comes out in January... and there are a few kids books planned for the next year.
Even when Disney bought up Marvel, they kept a distance from their appearances in stores for some time... sure, they had little cubby holes of Iron Man 2 stuff that you can find anywhere. But now they seems to have slowly integrated Marvel products into their stores... even though its stuff you can get virtually anywhere else. The only Disney Store Muppet items were seasonal things that got cleared out a couple months after hitting store shelves.
Still, the presence outside the stores is just as much the faulty of the retailers and manufactures who didn't give a crap about the license, but got all excited to do throw away movies that you'll never see again. Movies are the most important thing apparently... just not this one. But on the plus side, we're not seeing unwanted Kermit dolls thrown into a pile at Target to be cleared out a couple months later. I think Disney wants to get these guys to be marketed in the long haul... but it's going to be hard cracking markets where kids ONLY want super Hero figures of movies they just watched and girls only want stupid crap that's ugly (Zoobles? Really?!)
On a similar note with the lack of Mass Market merch, I just realized that TRON Legacy had a full toy line, along with a few Disney Store exclusives. This boggles the mind even further because, well, I'm a huge fan of TRON it's much more obscure than The Muppets. Just goes to show Disney is all over the place with merchandising.
I have a feeling TRON Legacy underperforming may have had something to do with the lack of Muppet merchandise. Whether or not the movie was a hit, Disney probably didn't want a repeat of TRON just in case.
That is a very good point. Because while the movie did surprisingly well, at least better than they expected - the toy line did not. Massively mis-mananged, over-ordered, and under sold. It's just a little over a year since the movie primered and the toys are just starting to hit Big Lots, and spent a lot of the intermediate time between Clearance isles and Ross.
I can see Disney being weary of another situation like that, but it's a little different with a franchise that's been around as long, and as recognizable as the Muppets are. Still, i'd be willing to bet that that's a big part of it becuase Disney isn't really one to think about it that way.
Like the James Cameron Avatar and Terminator Salvation figures, I expect these once $10 figures of Tron Legacy to begin flooding the dollar stores soon.
So I got a Gonzo shirt for Xmas that's definitely in a female size. NO clue where my brother got it, but it's some sort of Christmas miracle. I can't believe he found one!
Oh, I could only wish. I'd love for that to happen (Despite the fact that it means bad things for the franchise) but since they're popping up in Big Lots, I doubt it.
Puckrox, COOL getting the shirt. I got the Plush Gonzo for christmas. He looks great other than nitpicks and his arms being way too short.
Furthermore: Wo do I have to kill for a descent plush of Rowlf???
But I have to admit, that the new Rizzo looks like the original - really awesome: Received him to Christmas
Those figures were very poor quality. The Avatar ones, the Terminator ones... they're all just horrid below Happy Meal quality stuff. Tron was a modest meh success if anything, Avatar was huge, Terminator was a complete flop. I'll throw in the Star Trek figures... all over produced, over ordered, overpriced, undersold. All in clearance markets.
But those were all movie specific. There's no reason why Muppet anytime stuff shouldn't be considered because the Tron crap didn't sell. That's 2 distinct different properties. One based on a cult bomb movie, one based on a 50 something year old franchise that includes 7 movies, 3 TV shows, a mess of specials and other great things. Muppet merchandise shouldn't be tied down to one movie... Maybe the Walter dolls (so far).
Still, nice to see that these things became almost impossible to find when Happy Feet and Arthur Christmas stuff at TRU goes untouched.
Exactly my point. Disney (at least in their actions) doesn't seem to realize that The Muppets has a bigger Merchandising market than TRON, and We the fans wouldn't even compare the two, on the other side they are both theatrical films. But then again this is the same corporation that cancelled The Beatles' Yellow Submarine re-release becuase "Mars Needs Moms" flopped.
And honestly, it's a lot better getting a really nice set of Plush then tons and tons of stuff in the mass market that's pretty low quality. The TRON stuff for the most part does fall into this, that's what I was getting to with "Mis-managed", it's a lot to do with Disney asked for a series of Action Figures from a company that really doesn't do "figures" because they wanted Air-Hogs to do Lightcycles. That, and they wanted really small figures to light up, and stores like Target ordered way too much of the first set.
Anyway, it's a lot better for them to do a LITTLE bit of Muppets, completly drop the ball and on top of it struggle to meet demand, then to prepare tons of merch and have it rot in the corner and go from retailer to clearance to discount store and so forth. "Leave them wanting more" as they say.
Sorry for the double post (if they don't merge that is), but this is such a brillaint point. Happy Feet and Arthur stuff has already started to be on clearance and I hardly ever see anyone even LOOKING at them, and EVERY time i've been in the Disney Store at least 2 of the characters are completly out, and several people in the store are looking at the Muppet merch, or talking about the movie. Very good sign.
Well, I'm not sure there was to be a rerelease, but it definitely stopped Zermeckis from making his remake of the Yellow Submarine. Not so much due to Disney, but because Imagemovers, or whatever they called themselves, completely folded . I thought the Beatles' music and copyright holder was in charge of the movie. THEY should rerelease the film, at the very least on DVD.
I have a problem with the huge focus on movie merchandise of movies based on toy lines based on comic books (you know the rant by now)... but the thing is, Jazzware's Adventure Time line sold so well, I couldn't get the Jake action figure I wanted for Christmas... no one could find it. And that's a TV show. Everywhere else I go, I see DC and Marvel characters sitting there, not half as bad as movie specific Transformers. But then again, the action figure culture has change since last decade. Not every random thing is made into an action figure by some third party company. People would rather by Apps or digital things now... blind box vynals are on their way out.
But yeah... I agree that the under-ordering causing more of a demand is better than over-ordering and never seeing so much as a T-Shirt again. I just hope to see smaller Bean Bag sized plush by the time the movie drops on DVD. Not just so much the price, I don't have room for large Beakers and Gonzos. As it stands, the Pepe I got yesterday, I need to undo my place just to fit him in.
Trust me, I hear you on the size issue, ha. And yes, I was referring to the Zemekis remake. Last i'd heard it was supposed to be a remake/re-animation, and I didn't hear about the company itself folding.
Thanks to the UK site, we know that the current plushes are considered "Medium" (as well as the Swedish Chef plush) and i've seen a few rare 21" Gonzos, and 25" Kermits which I could only assume would be considered "Large". Definently a possibility for smaller ones. I think we can expect some good stuff come March.
I am nothing but glad we're not getting a re-imagined Yellow Submarine. Even if they got the 2 surviving Beatles to do voice work. There is no way they can improve on that film. It's one of the greatest animated movies of all time. Why soil it with stiff motion capture that's not half as good or fluid as TinTin was. Why soil it by having to do it again, anyway? Passing on it was a work of genius. That would have only ticked people off. We'd get a shirt and a rereleased DVD of it, sure... but at what cost?
Well, the company didn't exactly fold... it's still out there and making a deal with Universal, but Disney dropped them like a hot potato after that one. Unfortunately the prior film, A Christmas Carol did well for some reason. But I blame the release of that in November for Princess and the Frog's lousy December opposite The Chipmunks slot.
Yes. There's a large Kermit and a large Animal too. I just hope for bean bags. I wish I could still collect them. I don't even have Dug from up yet. Did get Dr. Doof though. Shame they put him on clearance so fast and that Agent P disappeared quickly.
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