A few times a year, I tend to check out some of the latest in audio-based gadgets, several of which I report on here at THE ROCK FATHER. A couple of the coolest this year came from SOL Republic. Their RELAYS In-Ear Headphones have become my go-to set for use at the gym (trumping some other brands I'd been using), and their PUNK Wireless Bluetooth Speaker is a fine choice for being ultra-portable in that it fits in the palm of your hand and can be mounted onto a bike or backpack. I'm not only featuring both of these great items in my 2014 Holiday Wish Guide, but giving all of you a shot at winning the PUNK Wireless Bluetooth Speaker!
Giveaway: Can You Defeat the Elf on the Shelf? Win an [adult swim] ROBOT CHICKEN Stocking! #EffTheElfWritten by James Zahn
'Tis the season... to be mischievous! Or so says that annual visitor from the North Pole, the jovial chap in the red stocking cap, but not the man named 'Claus." I'm speaking, of course, about The Elf on the Shelf. While a family tradition for many, these "scout elves" are known to move around one's home acting as a sentry for Santa Claus himself, reporting on who's been naughty and nice in the weeks ahead of the big day, Christmas. These good elves are noble in their duties, but as sites like Buzzfeed and Huffington Post (who practically has an entire section of Elf-related snark) have shown us over and over again... there's some bad elves in the bunch. With that, THE ROCK FATHER has teamed-up with ROBOT CHICKEN and [adult swim] to give YOU a chance to say #EffTheElf! This is your chance to have some fun taking pictures of your own dolls and action figures out-elfing those effing elves, and in the process gain a chance to win an ultra-rare [adult swim] stocking packed with ROBOT CHICKEN goodies, including the new ROBOT CHICKEN CHRISTMAS SPECIALS DVD from Warner Home Video! Get out your camera and your toys... it's time to play and do a little toyography!
JINGLE ALL THE WAY 2: An Exclusive Look Behind-the-Scenes of the Follow-Up to The Greatest Holiday Film of All-Time (Part 1)Written by James Zahn
For some it's A CHRISTMAS STORY. For others, IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE or WHITE CHRISTMAS. For me, the undisputed greatest Holiday film of all-time is the 1996 Christmas classic, JINGLE ALL THE WAY - a film that I've mentioned in nearly 30 articles on this site alone. The reasons behind my affection for the film are many (a "perfect storm" of elements), so when the news arrived that Twentieth Century Fox and WWE Studios were going into production on a belated sequel, I covered the announcement with cautious optimism. For me, the thought of a JINGLE ALL THE WAY 2 was akin to messing with the legacy of what I'd argue to be the CITIZEN KANE of Christmas films, so when the out-of-nowhere opportunity to visit the Vancouver set came along, I couldn't pass it up. In March, I found myself standing alongside Larry the Cable Guy, WWE Superstar Santino Marella and director Alex Zamm (THE LITTLE RASCALS SAVE THE DAY) on the set of JINGLE ALL THE WAY 2. Thousands of miles from Rock Father HQ, I was back inside a world of movie magic that I'd been missing - a member of the FHE Insiders crew.
When I was little, Mickey Mouse was a great friend - something I've written about in the past. In fact, before I got into things like STAR WARS and G.I. JOE, Mickey and his friends were tops, and that makes it even sweeter when I see my girls enjoying the "Magical World of Disney," from DOC McSTUFFINS and SOFIA THE FIRST to MICKEY MOUSE CLUBHOUSE and MINNIE'S BOW-TIQUE. Of my two daughters, it's Little Finley that has a particular affection for Mickey and Minnie, and that helps plant the Minnie's Bow-Tique Hold My Hands Singing Minnie Mouse by Just Play on my 2014 Holiday Wish Guide. Recommended for Ages 3+, Minnie is a great toy that Finn has been enjoying hands-on, so much that I believe your little ones will love it, too.
You almost can't go wrong with MY LITTLE PONY, and that's something that my girls (and a massive following of kids and grownups alike) will be happy to back me up on. While viewers eagerly await the fifth season of MY LITTLE PONY FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC (coming to Discovery Family next year), the toy aisles have been serving up some new ways to have some adventures in Equestria. From Cartwheel Kids under license from Hasbro comes the Pinkie Pie Sweet Style Pony, a new twist on the classic styling heads that kids have been playing with for ages.
When it comes to the art of foam warfare, more "firepower" is always a good thing, and for the growing legion of kids and grownups alike that take to the battlefield, more power often comes at an increasingly high price. A new player in the foam aisle is Prime Time International, and at the top of their arsenal sits the Dart Zone: Covert Ops Scorpion Gatling Blaster. Available this season as a Walmart exclusive, this thing packs 20 foam darts into a flywheel magazine that's capable of shooting up to 70 feet - and at the bargain price of just $19.97 MSRP, it lands firmly in my 2014 Holiday Wish Guide.
Though it just turned one last week, Walt Disney Animation Studios' FROZEN is here to stay, and now - for the first time in forever - audiences can enjoy the FROZEN Sing-along Edition on DVD, just in-time for the Holidays! To celebrate, Disney and THE ROCK FATHER have teamed-up for a Holiday Wish Guide Giveaway where readers can enter for a chance to score this new version of FROZEN to enjoy in their own home. Do you want to build a snowman... or let it go, again?
Over the years, my wife and I had amassed a pretty impressive library - one that had at some point grown too impressive, and the lack of space after becoming parents (despite a move to a larger home) forced a major downsizing. Now, as our girls get older, the library is increasing in size once more, and there is not a room in this house that is devoid of books (yes, that includes the bathrooms). Between purchases and review copies, we've had some interesting reads this year, and tonight I'm sharing a few that would make fine gift ideas this holiday season - titles you're unlikely to find front-and-center, but should.
It's a BIG week for PBS KIDS, as the Holiday season officially launches on November 26th with the perennial favorite, CURIOUS GEORGE: A Very Monkey Christmas on PBS stations nationwide. It also marks the long-awaited debut of ODD SQUAD, the all-new live-action math series for kids, along with gearing-up for holiday-themed episodes from favorites like PEG + CAT, THOMAS & FRIENDS, DANIEL TIGER'S NEIGHBORHOOD and more in the weeks ahead. Check out the full programming rundown and previews below, right here on THE ROCK FATHER...
I've written about the Hess Toy Truck several times here on THE ROCK FATHER, but since it's been an East Coast tradition, we never owned one until earlier this year when we were out in Pennsylvania and managed to score a Hess Miniature Truck at a Hess Express location. The Hess Toy Trucks have always been fascinating to me since they're a true American classic - launched in 1964 as an affordable, high-quality toy - and one that's become a phenomenon loved by families and collectors alike. This year, they've taken the trucks online, and in honor of the Hess Toy Truck’s 50th anniversary, Hess Corporation has released the first-ever Collector’s Edition Hess Toy Truck, an individually numbered tanker truck with a replica of the original 1964 tanker trailer inside. Thanks to the folks at Hess, we now have one - and I'm including this as a must-have in my 2014 Holiday Wish Guide. Just look at how beautiful this is... packed with play features and more than 100 working LED lights...
As the Holiday Season officially kicks-off this week, it's only right to start spreading some holiday cheer tied into my most-anticipated holiday film of the year - WWE Studios and Twentieth Century Fox's JINGLE ALL THE WAY 2 (I was on-set in Vancouver for the filming of it earlier this year). Larry the Cable Guy stars alongside WWE's Santino Marella in the sequel to the 1996 Holiday classic (my favorite Christmas movie of all-time), and we're gonna give all of you a chance to win a copy on Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD Combo Pack!