Having seen all the various incarnations of the TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES over the years, it's been fascinating to see the waves of popularity levels rise and fall over time. I was front-and-center the first time the TMNT crew jumped from animated to live-action, and I tend to think that they're actually more popular now. TMNT has been firmly-established as a multi-generational interest at this point, one enjoyed by parents and kids, girls and boys alike. When a character becomes so loved that they wind up being sold on little girls' underwear (and yes, The Rock Daughters' do have Ninja Turtles undies), that's a big deal. From the beginning, Playmates Toys has held the master license, and I think that their toys just keep getting better. This year, they've launched a new sub-line that places the Turtles and their enemies in a new aisle at the toy store - the diecast section. Enter the T-MACHINES.
Mattel has been doing some really fun things with Hot Wheels lately, one of which are multiple series' of vehicles with themes rooted in pop culture history. Many of these are retailer exclusives that are offered as sort of a "one-and-done" thing - a big shipment arrives in one shot, and when they're gone, they're gone. For families and casual collectors, sometimes completing a full set is a challenge, as there tends to be one or two hard-to-find cars in the set. Recently, Hot Wheels issued a six-car, Tom & Jerry 75th Anniversary Series that was created to commemorate the MGM Cartoons that won Academy Awards from 1940-1957. I've recently acquired a set, and I'm giving all of you a chance to win it, right here on THE ROCK FATHER Magazine!
On my recent trip to the Ohio headquarters of The Step2 Company, I turned a corner to find something mysterious... large... and previously only rumored to exist. The legend turned out to be true... and there it was - headlights shining at me - glaring in front of an iconic blue and orange color scheme that can only be claimed by one of America's biggest and best-selling automakers. Granted, they're usually 1:64 in scale and made largely of diecast metal, but I don't know if any car brand has moved more units than Hot Wheels since the first "Redlines" rolled-out in 1968. The odd thing here is that I found myself staring at what may be one of the biggest Hot Wheels items ever to be produced... and it wasn't in the famed Southern California Design Studio that Mattel has established for Hot Wheels, but in the Ohio testing facility of fellow toymaker Step2. Take a peek at this, and look very closely...
One of the fastest-growing and most exciting toy collections here at Rock Father HQ in recent months is the Hot Wheels STAR WARS Character Car Collection by Mattel. It's a unique thing - spawned from the first time that Mattel has held a STAR WARS license in the nearly 40-year history of the franchise, and something we've been covering since the first vehicles began hitting retail last year. With designs inspired-by characters from nearly all facets of a galaxy far, far away, two of the most recent additions are Chopper - the Astromech Droid from Disney XD's STAR WARS REBELS - and bounty hunter Boba Fett. Take a look at our new hands-on video below, right here on THE ROCK FATHER!
Originally Published April 17, 2015 | Updated: September 14, 2020
STAR WARS fans of all ages got excited in 2014 when it was first revealed that Mattel would get to dabble with the STAR WARS license for the very first time under their flagship HOT WHEELS brand. Jumping in heavy, the announcement came with the debut of a life-sized, functional Darth Vader character car, along with the slow roll-out of a variety of STAR WARS-inspired rides across several different assortments, pack sizes and retailer exclusives, keeping up has quickly become a difficult pursuit. That's why created a checklist, complete with all the details I can wrangle for this exciting collection. This list will continue to be updated regularly with the latest releases not only for the Hot Wheels Star Wars Character Cars but also other Star Wars-themed Hot Wheels including special assortments and Pop Culture Series releases!
Each year, Mattel produces a limited-edition set of Hot Wheels vehicles that are sold exclusively through Walmart for Easter. Much like the Holiday Hot Rods series that they do, these bargain-priced diecast rides are generally a one-and-done type of deal. Each store gets a sidekick display or two, and once they're gone, they're gone... and a ton of them end up on third-party resale sites like eBay for significantly higher prices. For 2015, the "Happy Easter" Series contains six cars, each priced at just $0.84 cents each in-store... but the trick is to actually find a whole set... which is where I come in. For the past two years, my girls have received a set, and I already have confirmation that the Easter Bunny will be delivering a set for my little ones this year as well. But there is another full set of six - one that I have here in my possession at Rock Father HQ, and I'm going to give it to one of you. These would make some really cool basket stuffers! Ready for a chance to win?
Star Wars: TM & © Lucasfilm Ltd. All Rights Reserved. This special content section is brought to you by THE ROCK FATHER Magazine, and is not affiliated with or sponsored by The Walt Disney Company or any Star Wars licensee except on individual posts where noted. May the Force Be With You... Always!