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Is there a reason why Disney dislikes releasing Muppet DVD's?

Discussion in 'Muppet Merchandise' started by beaker, Dec 27, 2014.

  1. minor muppetz

    minor muppetz Well-Known Member

    Actually, the people at Tough Pigs revealed that there is going to be some Muppet merchandise this year. It was kept behind curtains, and photos weren't allowed (people could only see them on request), but there are going to be some new Muppet toys, a series of "Mini Mates" and a collection of bigger action figures (two at a time). There's a thread about it in the Action Figures folder. I think there might be more stuff not reported about online, but the Tough Pigs people won't be doing an article about Muppet stuff at Toy Fair until next week.

    Or 1992-1997.
    Duke Remington likes this.
  2. jvcarroll

    jvcarroll Well-Known Member

    They'll be releasing two varieties of Muppet action figures this fall. I think it's fair to say that Disney doesn't hate Muppet merchandise.
    Duke Remington and dwayne1115 like this.
  3. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    If I could list all the Disney related things not at the Disney store or cleared out of the Disney Store, Muppets would only be one of them. Heck, they're clearing out the Guardians of the Galaxy merchandise and that was the biggest movie hit of the year! And NONE of it was Disney Store original. Think of it this way, sure we didn't see bean bags of Scooter or Sam the Eagle. We didn't get one of Groot either. And he's, like, the internet's favorite hero now. Even their Big Hero stuff was lackluster. Turns out, Big Hero 6 was one of their most successful films.
    dwayne1115 likes this.
  4. Stulz

    Stulz Well-Known Member

    Yeah it's all there in the Muppet Stuff post ...
    MuppetSpot likes this.
  5. Whatnot1988

    Whatnot1988 Well-Known Member

    To give you an idea of the age we live in, if anything we should be asking for Disney to release TMS (in its entirety, let alone S4 and S5) on iTunes--in this day and age physical-media releases are becoming too expensive for many companies. An iTunes release doesn't have to be necessarily devoid of bonus features, either, as they can be "bundled" with an entire season (provided you bought the season bundle and not the individual episodes).
    dwayne1115 likes this.
  6. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    If it was up Disney, virtually everything at the Disney store would be Frozen
  7. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    Also that's a good point, regarding demanding TMS and other shows on itunes or other digital formats.

    By the time Season 4 or 5 come out, IF they ever come out, will physical media even be sold? Forget dvds, will there still be blu rays?

    Also I wouldn't consider Diamond Direct lifting from the 2002 Palisades line for a couple characters all too exciting. And those mini-mates are attrocious.

    However, if you are a Toy Story fan...there now seems an insane, insane plethora of 2", 4" and 6" Toy Story figures and playsets like I've never seen before. I said this in 2011 out of anger, but it bears repeating: I don't hold out much hope for much Muppet merch from this moment forward; let alone in figural form. Also thank goodness for the Funk Sesame line coming out; most if not all of the Sesame merch in the modern era has been rather lame(and that's compared to other pre school toy merchandise even)

    Also, I mostly just saw Elmo stuff in that Toy Fair recap. How is Elmo still so popular? Especially after that whole, you know, scandal
  8. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    It's not Disnys fault the economy thrashed. Leaving people poor.
    jvcarroll and Duke Remington like this.
  9. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Beats everything being either Dalmatians or Pooh. Seriously. They didn't even have Mickey Mouse during that period. Just Pooh and Dalmatians. Don't make me play the "nobody actually likes Planes, but they market the crap out of them anyway" card. At least Frozen made money. Planes is just there in the off chance a Grandmother accidentally buys one for their 4 year old grandson. Seriously. I see Planes stuff sitting on shelves at deep discount. Just sitting there gathering dust.

    But yeah. Disney has too many brands. Princesses, Frozen, every single preschool series, Marvel, Pixar, Cars/Planes, Movie dujour, Star Wars.

    No one buys toys anymore. They're not Apps. We need our crappy, easy to toss together and steal from something else Apps. Though the new TMNT line seems to always be flying off of shelves.

    Especially with the adult action figure market. Nothing, virtually nothing is under 20 bucks now. Sometimes you have to go into the 30's for something exactly the quality of the Muppet Line we used to be able to buy for 10 bucks and under. That means less retro based toylines, and more based on movies and video games. And they don't really seem to move at those prices. While I'm glad there's another go at action figures with the Muppets, I couldn't be less excited for another Kermit and Fozzie for 2.5 times what I paid for it. Rarer characters like Link, Crazy Harry I'd strongly think about. But I just see this line up consisting barely of the main 5 (Kermit, Fozzie, Piggy, Animal, Gonzo).
    dwayne1115 likes this.
  10. jvcarroll

    jvcarroll Well-Known Member

    I can't understand this horribly negative outlook.

    There have been no photos of the Diamond SELECT figures yet and the only report was that the size was smaller and had not been determined yet. Palisades has a very specific look. I doubt they're "lifting" from them.

    Your personal distaste for MiniMates doesn't negate the fact that they're a very popular mainstream product that a lot of fans will like. Their inclusion is a great thing for the Muppets brand!!

    And the Elmo scandal from two and a half years ago? Are you really going to rehash that? Really? I don't see that having any place in this discussion.

    Except for the note about TMS seasons 4 and 5, I just can't get behind anything you've said here. I'm bewildered by the pessimism.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2015
    Duke Remington and dwayne1115 like this.
  11. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    At the risk of bashing Henson again, look at it this way. The Fraggle line up they brought to Toy Fair is pathetic! The same lousy, overpriced dolls with all the unique characters pulled out of the line. I'm very happy about the Dark Crystal Reaction figures, as they're going to finally put that what if Kenner line behind us. But other than that, at least the Muppets have something.

    And why does everyone forget that Cookie Monster is gaining popularity all of the sudden. Elmo's still going to be made into Elmo stuff because it sells. But so doesn't Cookie and the rest of the gang. I'm disappointed there weren't any Hasbro releases mentioned. I had such high hopes for their Sesame Street line, and then they just seemed to Peter out.

    Other than that. I'd say I'm disappointed by the Muppet presence at Retail, but frankly it's more than I'd expect. All toy lines are movie tie ins again, with the occasional comic book as a not movie or comic book as a cartoon adaption. Even ones based purely on cartoons seem to have vanished. I blame Jazzwares for the lackluster Adventure Time assortment, leading all the good characters to be comic book store exclusives while Jake Suit couldn't move off the shelves any slower. Sadly, the Muppets don't fit into that comic book movie tie in line. No one really bothers with quirky action figures anymore unless they're video game or movie tie ins for collectors.
  12. mr3urious

    mr3urious Well-Known Member

    And treated as more disposable than an actual toy, too. More expensive, as well, once you factor in all the crazy microtransactions to pay for an allegedly free game.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2015
  13. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Hasbro's doing it right, though. Unlocking in App things via purchasing physical toys.

    Best part is, you don't have to own the apps to enjoy them. But darned if those Transformers Angry Birds toys aren't impossible to find.
  14. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    If you look at the Wreck It Ralph dvd and other Disney dvd releases of the past few years many of them bare a sticker that warns "for a better deal, and special features buy the blu ray version". And then you notice Wreck It Ralph dvd is $20 with zero extras while the blu ray version is much cheaper with a bunch of extras.

    More proof Disney is full of poop when it comes to home releases.
  15. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    1. Everybody is still spending like crazy. Gamestop is always packed at most the locations near me(and physical media by now is kind of a scam anyways for newer games) The massive port shut down not withstanding, toy shelves at all the major retailers have to continually be restocked for toys/games/game toys like amiibos. There might be some sectors of the economy where people are scaling back, but people still want the latest gadgets.

    2. We're finally transitioning out of the tiny dinky 3 3/4 cheap figures for $11 mode that's been in place since the late 2000's. For instance Jakks has been putting out the most amazing Nintendo/video game figures in the history of like ever, for $7.99 a pop which is unheard of these days for the level of quality. Other companies will have to follow suit. And you look at once super niche market stuff like Funko now being sold everywhere. Like a whole line of Fifth Element and Dark Crystal figures will be coming to stores like TRU, Barnes and Noble, etc this year as far as collector's market goes.
    Tho its weird how kids meals toys are pretty much non existent these days.
    Also Ive been EXTREMELY happy with the new TMNT line as much as I dont like the new series. Picked up the new Bebop and Rocksteady for $8 each. So at least Jakks, Playmates and Funko have it going on. Heck I even liked the Big Hero 6 figures.
  16. beaker

    beaker Well-Known Member

    Hey, don't be negative! :)

    I wish Jazzwares had done more Sonic 4" line figures, but as much as they overbit with so many licenses(Nicktoons, tho sadly no Rocko toys were made)
    I think they delivered pretty well. I dug most the Regular Show and Adv Time figures. Wish they had gotten a Gravity Falls license but I think Jazzwares did pretty good. I miss the 90's figure era of Toy Biz and Resaurus, but I feel the last couple years have been pretty good figure wise.

    But of course Im pessimistic with Muppet relate merchandise and especially toys ever coming out. Is there any indication to the contrary we've seen?
  17. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    I think the problem was they bit off more than they could chew with all the licenses. I blame TRU for the lines not doing so well. I did indeed love those toys, but we never got many more of them, and they were cleared out too fast. They were planning Rocko and AAAAH Real Monsters, but the retailers never let them get that far. But I was disappointed in the distribution of the AT and RS figures. I like that they made Ice King and LSP, but they were only found in comic shops. And they only made small figures of Pops and Muscle Man. I liked the assortment, but wish that they had another year to have full sized Muscle Man and Skips toys to go with Mordecai and Rigby. I know the company is still out there. They make Teen Titans Go figures. And I know somewhere Gravity Falls toys might exist. I found a rainbow barfing gnome plus toy the other day.

    But overall, it seems that action figures are way past over unless they're movie or collectible video game tie ins (and those ones are expensive as crap. 30 bucks for Heavy!). I'm loving what Funko's doing with Pop Vynals, but I wish they'd get more cartoon licenses and less John Hughes movies this go around. I'm glad we're finally getting an adult collectors' Sesame Street line after the license for action figures was cursed. And I do wish there was more Muppet stuff out there. We had watermelon flavored yogurt tubes with Rowlf on them when the last movie came out. I really wish things would stop having to be movie tie ins.
  18. jvcarroll

    jvcarroll Well-Known Member

    Pop culture products are either nostalgic items or they are related to current projects. The problem isn't that Muppet items are merely movie tie-ins. It's that the Muppets have only been doing movies. When/if that changes the products will change with it. They really need something ongoing. ;)
  19. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    Muppets, yes, but it seems everything has to be tied into a movie. You can't even have nostalgic products unattached to some movie. Not anymore, anyway. And it's a double edged sword. If the movie's a success, you get more movie leaning stuff. If it's a failure, you never hear about them again. Even Japan's got in on the trend, but it backfired because animated reboot tie ins to the live action movies are more successful than the films themselves. And that does quite apply to toymaking as well. Remember before the big action figure crash of 06 when they could take any old property and make it a toy line? Even if you try that, as Jazzwares did, you don't get the same audience as movie tie in merchandising. Even with CURRENT cartoons! Seriously! Go to a Target or TRU. Spongebob movie specific merchandise is selling out while the general Spongebob stuff is just sitting there. That's a weird disconnect.

    As for the Muppets, darn skippy they need a non-movie project. Tying the success of the characters directly to the films makes sense initially, but to keep the franchise rolling, and maybe get people into theaters this time, try some small screen projects. TV specials that aren't thrown together 2 weeks before they go to air would work if a TV series is out of question. Tie in some of that merch to those specials if you have to. They certainly did that with Toy Story. Release what parts of the show aren't in renegotiations for music on Netflix. Make a project for them. There's plenty of room to stretch where movies won't.
  20. jvcarroll

    jvcarroll Well-Known Member

    That's not entirely correct. You can have nostalgic products. There are many, but they have always been niche.

    Products, particularly Muppet products, have usually been tied to current projects be it a movie or a television show. Unless or until the Muppets have something in the pipeline, they're not likely to get more than they have. There's a symbiotic relationship between both things. One promotes the other. The Muppets were hocking loads of products this time last year. This is not a new phenomenon. It's the way it goes. The thing we should be shouting for is a new Muppet Show or special. If that ever happens and hits big enough with audiences, we'll see some products.

    That said, I am still disappointed in the lack of products they put forth for the 2011 film. That was really a lost opportunity. If I were to design some sort of product list of easy selling items for that film it would have included:
    • A line of small PVC figures (more expansive than what we got)
    • Figural keychains (including a sprinkling of alternative characters like Dr. Teeth etc)
    • Linens
    • Toiletries
    • and of course puppets.
    They did have some of that, but no strong effort was made. I can't blame them for playing it safe - and we forget how much manufacturer and retail is needed to even get these things made. But if anyone could do it, Disney could. They should have been more confident. I think a stronger product line for TM could have boosted the numbers for MMW.
    Duke Remington likes this.

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