Friday, February 28, 2014

Most Wanted QVC items

In preparation for The Muppets QVC appearance on March 16th, the shop by phone retailer announced a selection of items that can be pre-ordered now. 

Miss Piggy's Haute Tote

 Muppets Most Wanted Soundtrack

and check out the first look at the back cover!

 philosophy Limited Edition love swept trio

The Muppets 6" Collectible Musical Waterglobe

Most Wanted Starburst Issue #398

Starburt, the world's longest running sci-fi, horror and fantasy magazine has given Constantine his very first magazine cover! Sure it's just a graffiti street art representation, but it's the cover nonetheless!

In this issue…
It's time to play the music, it's time to light the lights, it's time to meet the Muppets… in the most sensational, inspirational, celebrational, Muppetational issue of STARBURST yet! That’s right, in honour of the iconic characters’ continued cinematic comeback with this month’s MUPPETS MOST WANTED, we turn the spotlight on Kermit and co. to explore their 40+ year career on screen. We also speak to key talent that contribute to the magic, including director JAMES BOBIN and The Jim Henson Company chairman, BRIAN HENSON.

You can pick up a copy at select Barnes and Noble stores or order one here from their official shop.  

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Muppets Most Wanted: Without Muppets!

What if they made a Muppet movie without any Muppets? 

Find out here.

"We're Doing a Sequel" MUSIC VIDEO!

Our friends at ToughPigs discovered a new music video for the opening song to Muppets Most Wanted, appropriately tiled "We're Doing a Sequel."

The amazing MUSIC VIDEO! answers many questions fans have been yearning to learn, Will Andy and Randy appear? YES. 

Are those the Zucchinis Brothers getting shot out of cannons? YES. 

Esther Williams tribute? Check. 

And most importantly why the original title of the film was "The Muppets... Agian." (cuz it's in the song!)

 So much to love here. This movie is going to be awesome. I can't wait to "Do it All Again!"

"Do It All Again!"

Throwback Thursday: Grossbusters -The Harold Ramis Tribute

This week saw the passing of comedy legend Harold Ramis.

Not only did he direct comedy classics like Caddyshack

National Lampoon's VacationGroundhog Day, Analyze This and Analyze That, he was the writer behind National Lampoon's Animal HouseMeatballsCaddyshack, 
Stripes, Back to SchoolArmed and DangerousGroundhog Day, Analyze ThisAnalyze That, and both Ghostbusters films in which he also starred as Dr. Egon Spengler. 

The Spring 1985 issue of Muppet Magazine featured a parody called "Grossbusters." 

You can learn the words to the "Grossbusters" theme song below.

And kids always remember, NEVER cross the streams!
We'll miss you Harold Ramis. R.I.P. 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Be More Tea!

The Muppets may not be nominated at this years Oscars, but that doesn't mean they won't have a presence. In addition to doing promotion for Toyota Highlanders, The Muppets will kick off Lipton's "Be More Tea" campaign during the night.

Lipton created the hastag #BeMoreTeam for you to follow along and share how you are being more tea.

“We live in a busy world. It's easy to slip into a routine with our heads down, moving from one place or obligation to the next. Lipton wants to inspire consumers to 'look up', take in all that life has to offer and enjoy what you may have otherwise missed. This is what 'Be More Tea' means to Lipton and the philosophy we will bring to life in our new national ad campaign starring the Muppets,” - Alfie Vivian, vice president of refreshments for Lipton’s parent company Unilever.
But even better is the amazing commercial that will debut during this Sunday's Oscar telecast. Sit back, get yourself a nice glass, cup, mug, bowl or whatever of tea, and check out this incredible commercial that even features a cameo by a Muppet not seen since 1984!

Amazing, right? The commercial was produced by Lodnon-based  ad firm adam&eveBBD and I can't wait to see what they come up with next!

Most Wanted Subway bags

Thanks to Zach Haumesser, we have our first look at the new Subway Kids meal  Muppets Most Wanted bags!

It looks like there will be 6 bags in all, five featuring an individual character: Kermt, Miss Piggy, Animal, Fozzie, and Beaker, and one group shot with all the above plus Sam, Walter, Foo Foo, Gonzo, and Constantine.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Rowlf and Rizzo get Ice Cream!

Check out this great video of Rowlf and Rizzo getting ice cream in their Toyota Highlander. Man, yogurt  yesterday and now ice cream today! The Muppets must love dessert!

Most Wanted Banner ads!

I saw Kermit this morning!
On a billboard, and it was the  flathead" version, but it still counts. It definitely made my commute, not that your average run of the mill drive, listing to great tunes, isn't fun enough; but when it's interrupted by a surprise Muppet appearance it just make it that much better!

There are three others styles so keep your eyes open as The Muppets make YOUR daily commute just that much better!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Most Wanted: GoGurt

The Muppets have teamed up with yoplait's GoGurt line to help promote Muppets Most Wanted.

You can check out the great ad here, then find these in on specialty marked boxes at your local supermarket. 

We have photos of what to look for in your local yogurt section.

Animal "Twisted Screamin' Green Apple" box. So unless the Swedish Chef and Bunsen are included inside other packages be on the lookout for at least two more Muppet Go-Gurt varieties!

Disney Store: Tumbler

Hope everyone had a great weekend, tumbled into work this morning, and is now sipping on your beverage of choice to start your day. 

hmm tumble and sip, remind me of something. Oh yeah, the new tumbler sipping cup now available at the Disney Store. This double waled BPA free cup features a great assortment of characters including Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, Animal, Dr. Bunsen Honeydew, and Beaker.

You can get yours at Disney Stores and online here.

Friday, February 21, 2014

No Roon For Boring Magazine ad

Check out this great Muppet highlander ad that was in the Feb 21st issue of Entertainment Weekly!

Toy Fair 2014!

Thanks to my friends at Tough Pigs I was able to attend this years Toy Fair in New York. 
So, in my best Joe Hennes disguise, I scoured the convention floor in search for Muppet Stuff!

First off let me assure that there was much more to be found then last year, unfortunately most of it was exactly the same as last year.  

The night before the convention I hit up Toys R Us in Times Square to see if anything new might have already been released. Sadly no. Other then this Sesame Street section and the customary Sesame toys....
...the only Muppet item to be found were these Kermit slippers. 
I then headed up the street to the Disney Store hoping to find some sort of store exclusive. Sadly, that was not to be, but they did have nearly all their new Most Wanted merchandise available in this great display.
The Muppet section is more prominent that the one for the last movie and, in between Frozen clips, they showing Muppet related videos upstairs as well. It's good to know  the Muppets are being well represented in one of the busiest retail locations in the wold!
The next day I made my way to the Javits Center for the main attraction: Toy Fair.
After dropping off my coat in the press area, I headed towards the show floor when, before even entering, my Sixth Sense kicked in. At the press entrance were the "Toy of the Year" winners as voted by members of the Toy Association (the folks that put on Toy Fair) and "Big Hugs Elmo" won the Infant/ Toddler toy of the year. 
I guess the lovable character choking your child award went to someone else this year. I'm looking at you Snoopy. 
My first stop inside the main hall was Funko, where they displayed the only two NEW Muppet items they're releasing this year: Swedish Chef and Sam Eagle POP! vinyls. 
Kermit, Miss Piggy, and Animal will be re-released as well in new Muppets Most Wanted packaging and I was told that Miss Piggy may be getting a touch up in this release too!
On a non-Muppet related note. Funko is branching out into stylized yet non POP! plush, highly detailed figures in a "Legacy Collection", and a line of retro 70's/80's "ReAction" figures that resemble the original Kenner Star Wars line. Currently,  there are no plans to use the Muppets in any of  these lines, but I'm hoping they do. The detail in the Legacy Collection rivals Palisades' attention to detail, and the "ReAction" line in particular is going to be a massive hit with toy collectors.

The company that released these key holders, key rings, lanyard and pin set were hoping to re-release them, though they didn't have any new items planned.
Poster Revolution is re-releasing this sticker set...
...but will add posters (which they didn't have displayed) and this Animal sticker to their Muppet repertoire. 

Ty was pushing their "Beanie Buddy" Kermit plush, though no other characters are planned. I even asked about photos that surfaced of Animal and Gonzo plush and they not only had no knowledge of them, took offence to me asking and  basically denied they were from Ty at all. So looks like Kermit only for the foreseeable future. Sheesh!
Speaking of companies only making Kermit, Pillow Pets is back with the Kermit Pillow Pet, but not in any larger size, hat or other extension of their brand.
They are adding a Kermit Pillow Purse, so at least there's something new!

UCC Distribution said that their large Kermit and small Fozzie would returning to store shelves with lower prices and more availability (No reason was given for excluding Animal, Gonzo and Miss Piggy). Apparently Toys R Us, though will be carrying these as well as Just Play's line.

They also had the Animal plush/blanket combo and a Kermit centric backpack they they
once again hoping to get into more stores. 

Evolve had a great new line of Muppet headband, hats, and Muppet eyes!
While Rubies moved the Muppets into their Imagine line and redid their Muppet outfit designs. They look MUCH better and apparently Disney made them change Animal from pink (as seen in the headband) to the more accurate red. Proof that Disney is finally listening to fans and cares about getting accurate representations out!

The real highlight though, was the Madame Alexander line of Muppet plush and puppets. 
They all look really good and they won't be outrageous expensive. The puppets will cost around $25 and the plush $20.

The Animal puppet could use some work,  
but the Fozzie and Piggy puppets are some of the best representations of these characters we've seen in a long time!

I made the suggestion to add a little more hair to the Animal plush and give him another drumstick. We'll see if they use my suggestions when they're released this fall to coincide with the Muppets Most Wanted Blu-ray/DVD.

Ever wonder what happened to the Kermit USB drive we found at last year's Toy Fair but no one ever found in stores? Well maker Vivitar told us exactly why that was. No stores ever bought them. That's right, shockingly Toys R Us nor or any other retailer wanted it. 
Well with the new movie coming out Vivitar is tripling their efforts by adding an Animal and Fozzie to the mix. We asked if anyone had bought them this year, and  at the time tthey still didn't have any sales. This one of those times we fans may have to take action to get a product on the shelf. If you want these Animal, Kermit, and Fozzie USB drives sitting next Sponge Bob, etc. at your local Toys R Us, then call them, hound them, and demand that they carry them. Literally "drive" them crazy. See what I did there. 
Music publisher Hal Leaonard had a few of their Muppet titles on display and I was shocked to learn that they are all still in print. Your local music store may not have them, but they can surely be ordered for you! I asked about a newbook of sheet music book for Muppets Most Wanted and they said "we have the license, so I would think sometime shortly after the movie is released." So there ya, you'll be able to learn all the new -soon to be classic - Muppet tunes very shortly!
There were a few non-Muppet, but Henson related items to found this year as well. Though many were items already released, such as Manhattan Toys' Fraggle Rock line. 

They seemed happy to have the license, and sadly even happier doing nothing new with it. In fact they seem to be doing less. While they still will be selling a large version of Red,
they didn't bother to bring it or any Doozers.
Briarpatch is continuing with their Pajaminals line...
...and said they would love to expand it if sales warrant. Same as last year.

TOMY has two Henson licences: Dinosaur Train and the aforementioned Pajaminals and were nice enough to give us a copy of their press materials.
Though it looks like this time it's Dinosaur Train that drew the short straw as they 're still be releasing those cool figures that interact with each other, but no new characters or versions are planned.  

If you look closely the sign says "New in 2014" though it's really touting Dinosaur Train items not made by TOMY. 

They are, however expanding on their Pajaminals line.

In addition to all the plush and various child bedtime aides already available, the new additions include:

 "Pajanimals Under the Lights Projectorhelps establish a daily bedtime routine to help children get to sleep. It’s the perfect bedtime activity: fun, calming and engaging all in one. When it’s time to go to bed, push the button to turn the projector on, then sing along to the soft lullaby. Or, when the music is turned off toddlers can fall asleep under the starry lights. When the colors have cycled through or the music has ended, it’s time to go to sleep…turn the lights out and say good night. Ages: newborn and up." 

"Pajanimals Bedtime Routine Board:
makes bedtime fun and helps little ones transition from play time to bedtime. The board highlights pre-bedtime activities such as taking a bath, brushing teeth, putting pajamas on and getting into bed. Fun sounds ping as your child slides each character to perform and complete each task. Complete all tasks to hear the “La-La-Lullaby” theme song.
Ages: 12 months to 6 years."

"Pajanimals Nighttime Plush
These large, soft and cuddly plush characters have a glowing tummy that softly changes colors.  Press their hand to start the nightlight and play the lullaby theme from Pajanimals.
Includes an auto shut off feature so children can fall asleep hugging these cuddly plush. Ages: newborn and up.

  • NighttimePlush CowbellaCowbella is a wonderful nighttime friend. She is a pink, purple and white cow who loves all things pink and princessy. Cowbella is very neat, organized, and well-mannered. She also has a vivid imagination and loves to
    play dress-up.

  • Nighttime Plush SquackySquacky is also a wonderful nighttime friend. He is a high energy, blue and yellow duck whose mind jumps around with its own mysterious logic. Squacky is never without his Blankie, tied around his neck like a cape. A self-appointed super hero, he only truly finds his courage with a little help from his friends."

"Pajanimals Pals
Toddlers won’t be able to put this blankie down. Premium cuddly fleece on one side, and super soft satin trim on the other, makes these soft Pajanimals Pals the perfect bedtime companion for little ones. Available in each of the characters from the show with their matching pajama prints. Ages: birth and up."

Pacific Play Tents showed off their line of Dinosaur Train tent for ll you that want to occupy Pteranodon Terrace. 
Room Mates was back with their Dinosaur Train, Sesame Street and Muppet wall decorations, though they didn't have of the Muppet ones at the fair, they were very happy that the Animal wall cling featured augment reality that would allow Animal to play his drums via a free app. 

Bumblebee photo-bomb
The biggest Sesame display by far was at Gund. The plush company had an array of Sesame plush, so much in fact that I really couldn't tell what was new. 
While I was there, the team at Gund was a little over whelmed with the international meme celebrity Grumpy Cat  to ask a whole lot of questions. 
The famous feline was obviously excited to show off his new line of Gund plush and there was a line of folks waiting to get their photo taken with her.

Don't let this list fool you, as there were any other brands and manufacturers I spoke to that expressed interest in acquiring the Muppet licence. While others, like puzzle maker Ravenburger, were interested in expanding their Muppet licence that currently only includes European territories into the US market as well. 

That wasn't enough youts for so after my whirlwind trip around the Javits Center I made the pilgramidge to teh NYC Toy mecca: FAO Schwarz!
Not only were they cranking out  personalized Muppet Whatnots in the workshop, the have another full Muppet are around the corner. Filled with multiple items including brand new plush from Just play. 

New you say,? They look the same as the ones that've been out for awhile now, well your'e half right. They are basically the same only with 2014 copyrights on the tags. However, there are some minor changes as well. 

The packing on the bendable Kermit no longer says "bendable" on the box but Kermit himself lets' you know via a word balloon, and the small Fozzie plush look MUCH better. 

Speaking of our favorite funny man, look what else I happened to notice...

Yup, that's a brand new Fozzie Pez! It's a new sculpt that looks greatly improves on his previous PEZ incarnation, and the brown stem fits better then the yellow.
Upstairs there was more Muppety goodness to found as ...
all the Fraggle plush, are currently 30% off! So if you've been on the fence about getting these head to FAO soon!

Due to the recent spat of crazy weather the northeast has been experiencing FAO did not get their shipment of  new Muppet puppets in yet, so we'll save them for another day. 

Phew, and I think that about does it for this years NYC Toy Fair trip. I can finally take off my Joe Hennes costume and resume my regular stint as Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon!