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286/365 – Blind Boxes
© 2012 Timmy Tamisiea. All rights reserved. Fatcap makes me fat happy.

286/365 – Blind Boxes

If you’re a fan of this blog and you read it often, then you’re weird.  Seriously.  Go to The Onion or Cracked.com.  I’m just this guy, you know.

Yes, Alfred, you should worry. Cracked.com is taking all our readers . . . well, yours. Mine left at post 32.

Still here?  Okay, now that all the posers are gone (thanks for sticking around Mom) I have a confession.  I’m not just a comic book and video game nerd . . . I also collect art toys.  Not a lot of people know this.  Seriously.  It’s not a common fact.  It’s the one hobby I have that I don’t advertise.  Maybe because until now, I never though of myself as a collector.  My dad collects swords and books.  My brother Chris collects vinyl.  My brother Tamer the Hammer collects muscles.  I collect things that in a perfect world, would never have allowed me to get laid.

Domo Nerd Art Toy has a better chance being single than I ever did.

Well, tonight, Megan and I went out for her birthday.  We saw Prometheus and had some grub and did some shopping —

Okay, SIDE NOTE.  I have to get this off my chest . . . Prometheus sucks.  Just not good.  Visually — neato.  But plot, character, casting . . . this is why Prometheus sucks, in 11 words.  Bad casting.  Bad casting,  Bad casting.  Bad casting.  Also bad writing.  Also, I’m sick of comedians calling a certain science fiction device featured in the film an “abortion machine.”  No abortions happened.  IF anything,  it should be called a C-Section machine.  Back to the game . . .

If anything, this was the only abortion machine in the theatre . . . because everyone dies a little when it was done.

Enough about the right to life debate . . . ugh.  Let’s get serious.  Let’s get on to TOYS.  Before the film, Megan and I did some waling around action.  You know, walking Sunset Blvd.  Making the rounds.  Doing blow.  You know, being HOLLYWOOD, y’all!  We walked into an Urban Outfitters so Megan could pick out a birthday present . . . because I’m lazy and can’t pick out presents myself.  “Close your eyes, sweetie . . . Now open them.  Surprise!  Urban Outfitters.  Her’s a 20 spot.  Now scamper off.  Your dead beat husband has to go drink and buy art toys.

It’s just like Disney Land . . . minus the magic and the friendly staff and the rides and smiles . . . just like Disney Land.

Urban Outfitter just happens to sell some of my most favorite art toys made by Kidrobot.  They make tiny Southpark, Futurama, Family Guy, Simpsons and Street Fighter figures among their highly valued art toys designed by famous street artists.   Many of them are smoking cigarettes — like a

Don’t you just want to eat them up . . . just chew the living plastic out of them?

Move over Breakfast of Champions. These guys have it all covered.

Well, this is the thing about Kidrobot.  Most of their toys come in blind boxes.

What?  Tin foil?  That’s a toy for girls and cooks!

See, when you pick up the box, there is no indication what toy you will get.  You know the series and the different variations in that series are printed (with odds on which one you will get) but absolutely no indication of which toy lies inside.  As a precaution against in store tampering, when you open the tiny cardboard box, you’ll find a a foil rapper that contains your toy — meaning, you can’t even cheat your way to getting a rare find.

There’s a science behind this kind of packaging.  Gregory Steirer’s blog, Cultural Producing wrote a good post about this technique of selling toys:

“For retailers, the primary benefit of blind boxes is that they prevent unpopular products within a particular toy series from remaining unsold and taking up display space (what is sometimes called peg warming).”

And . . .

“But toy makers benefit from blind boxes as well by driving up the number of purchases consumers must make in order to obtain a specific toy or collect the entire series. For toy makers, blind boxes are thus a clever way to force consumers into purchasing figures they either already have or never wanted in the first place.”

This all sounds quite unfair to the consumer — or collector as these products are usually marketed too.  But, this type of collecting can be fun, like opening a Christmas gift.  “Oooohh, which one will I get?”  Well, you know the odds of what you’ll get because their on the side of the box.  Opening that foil container is like a mystery prize.  It’s quite exhilarating.

What we didn’t see was that there was a foil wrapper inside containing a Nintendo 62.  Sorry, kid.

It’s when you start to complete your collection that your joy turns to anger.  This is like finding out that Santa gave you 5 copies of the XBox game Superman Returns.  You just keep getting duplicates and there’s nothing you can do about it . . . That’s when you have to beat the system by turning to Ebay.  Which can get expensive or, just plain annoying, as other jack holes keep outbidding you.

So, tonight, when Megan and I entered the Hollywood Urban Outfitters, what did I find?  Oh, a collection of Kidrobot Fatcap and Dunny blind boxes for sale — 80% off.

Fatcap makes me fat happy.

What did I do?  I left them there . . . idiots!  No, I bought the whole lot.  Man, 10 dollar blind boxes for 2 bucks?  This is perfect.  Usually these these cost between 10-15 bucks.  What this odes is takes away ALL the guilt of buying blind box toys.  If I get a duplicate (and trust me, I did) it’s no sweat because it was so cheap.

So, I just got 210 bucks worth of art toys for 41 bucks.  Enough money to give ol’ Megan another 20 bucks to spend on . . . I don’t know . . . What do girls buy at Urban Outfitters on their birthday?  An new husband?  Funny . . .

This is Brent, Megan’s purchase from Urban Outfitters. I hope he likes a apartment full of toys and comics. I’ll break this mother f’er down eventually.


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