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James Zahn

James Zahn

James Zahn is not a journalist, nor a blogger, though he may be credited as such by others, or even accept the title... depending on the circumstance.  Instead, he considers himself largely to be an "entertainment and lifestyle writer," bringing 25+ years of experience in the entertainment and publishing industries into the family realm as THE ROCK FATHER™.

As a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur, James now finds himself raising a pair young girls - The Rock Daughters™ - along with his wife from their Illinois home.

He is a member of The Toy Insider Parent Advisory Board, has contributed to The Toy Book and writes a regular Star Wars column - Transmissions from a Galaxy Far, Far Away for The Pop Insider. He also regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global.

James and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, WGN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, BusinessWire, Babble, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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"Halls of Justice Painted Green/Money Talking..." 

As Metallica's legendary album "...And Justice For All" celebrates its 30th anniversary, you're gonna want to set aside a little bit of that green (around $11 or so) for the new LADY JUSTICE Pop! Vinyl figure from Funko! Just-announced, this iconic statue is brought to life once more as a 3 3/4" vinyl figure in a way that only the folks at Funko can. My friends at Entertainment Earth just put pre-orders online, with an expected ship date of November... just in time for the November 2 release of the expanded edition versions of the album. Sadly, word on the street is that Jason Newsted's mighty basslines may still be missing (or at least barely audible).

On December 19, a beloved character will return to cinemas as Disney's Mary Poppins Returns hits theaters - just in time for Christmas. Today comes the first full trailer for the film, and if there was ever any doubt to just how much this connects to the 1964 film, this fresh look at what's yet to come should put that to rest. Anyone interested in flying a kite?

It's time to let you in on a little secret... about seven months ago, I had a chance to see the next evolution of Spin Master's Hatchimals: HatchiBabies! Available on Hatchimals Day, October 5, the new arrivals to the Hatchery Nursery are available for pre-order now through October 4 (while supplies last) at retailers across the country including Target, Walmart and Amazon. One of the biggest and most fun parts of the Hatchimals experience is the mystery and excitement of the hatching itself, so we're not going to tell you the species just yet - you'll have to wait until the due date to see what this year’s newest species looks like. What I can tell you is that there's a new surprise element at play: inside each speckled egg is either a boy or girl! Once hatched, kids will discover there are secret compartments, each adding even more play opportunities for playtime with the HatchiBaby once he or she is out of the egg.

Last month I previewed for you the L.O.L. Surprise! House, the long-awaited residence for MGA Entertainment's smash hit L.O.L. Surprise Dolls. Based on my own internal tracking (article views + reader search + the number sold thus far through affiliate links), as of September we have an early leader for 2018's hottest holiday toy. The activity is unusually high, and in that I mean that it's so far out in front right now, it's an absolute monster! While we don't have one here in The Toy Testing Facility at Rock Father™ HQ, the girls on MGA's L.O.L. Surprise! YouTube Channel have posted an official unboxing. This comes alongside the release of an official 30-second television spot, which I just added to The Rock Father Channel. This is an early reveal from my 2018 Holiday Wish Guide™, so if you want one of these - and at list price - you have to get it now! Pre-order via Amazon or Walmart, both priced at $189 as of this writing. See the new videos below...

Last month we met Team Fireball, and now it's time to meet the elite crew of ace pilots hired to serve and protect the Colossus platform in the upcoming animated series, Star Wars Resistance. In a new behind-the-scenes featurette, more members of the cast are revealed as the voices behind Team Aces. The one-hour series premiere of Star Wars Resistance will make its debut on October 7th on Disney Channel (10 p.m. ET/PT) and DisneyNOW. Two additional new episodes will be available via the DisneyNOW app and Disney Channel VOD, giving kids and families access to the series wherever and whenever they want to watch. Check this out...

It's a big day for Transformers as new toys from Paramount Pictures' Bumblebee Movie just hit pre-order (see them all here) and a whole bunch of new items from Cartoon Network's Transformers: Cyberverse just hit the streets. But that's not all - as some other items got into the mix including new plush keychains and an anticipated addition to the preschool-geared Rescue Bots line. My friends at Entertainment Earth just put them up for pre-order, so lets take a look...

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