Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Toys R Us

So my friend Jesse and I spent a few hours critiquing the selection at our only local Toys "R" Us (the typical grown-up Friday Night) and I found a couple things just barely interesting enough to share on the blog, which I use primarily for just barely, but not entirely interesting things.

Toy stores have changed a lot since I was a kid, but one thing that never lets me down is the science aisle. Here, we have a ridiculously amazing Star Wars themed Triops hatching kit. Raise crazy alien-looking crustaceans in a darling little replica of an alien ocean! Sure, it's prequel stuff, but it's some of the cool prequel stuff. That's an Opee sea-killer in the background, and a Colo claw-fish molded into the base! You knew that, right? Everybody knows that?

Even more amazing are these "unreal upchuck" kits. For those who aren't into biology, predatory birds cough up the indigestible bones and fur of rodent prey in little hairballs or "owl pellets," which can be collected and dissected to research what the animals have been eating. It's a wonderful way to spend an afternoon with the kids, but not everybody has raptors throwing up sticky balls of squirrel in their own backyard, so "Do & Discovery" has provided a synthetic alternative. I am blown away that this exists. It's completely and utterly ridiculous on one hand, sincerely cool on the other. I saw the owl kit first, and actively thought that a mole would make a cooler skeleton to piece together. Lo and behold, there's one in the eagle kit! I don't have money to blow on stuff like this, but boy was I ever tempted.

Finally, something a little less scientific:

I have a weird thing about Velma Dinkley (it's COMPLICATED), so this naturally stuck out to me like a sore thumb. Or more accurately like a giant, naked plastic nerd-chick crotch. It's not just the camera angle or anything; her flesh-colored crotch piece very noticeably protrudes past her skirt, and even if it didn't it would be pretty suspect. Female action figures have actually been recalled in the past for having too much flesh-tone in unfortunate areas, so I won't be surprised if this figure set undergoes a revision.

Yeah, if it didn't have to come with all those other superfluous characters (especially that dog, whatever his name is), I'd have probably bought one.