It's been discussed for awhile now, but today it's official: Hasbro is getting into the "event" space with HASCON, their first-ever "fan and family convention," set to be held in Providence at the Rhode Island Convention Center and Dunkin Donuts Center from September 8-10, 2017. The Hasbro crew promises that HASCON "will treat attendees to three unforgettable days featuring a celebration of Hasbro’s powerful characters and stories, including live interactive experiences, exclusive products, talent appearances, panels and much more." Check out some additional details from this morning's announcement...
Last year, Paramount Pictures and Hasbro revealed their plans to build a "cross-property interconnected onscreen universe featuring the brands G.I. Joe, Micronauts, Visionaries, M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armored Strike Kommand) and ROM." When you hear about such an "interconnected universe," it's not hard to see a line drawn back to the success of what Disney has done with MARVEL, and how other studios (including the folks at Warner Bros. with their "DC Extended Universe") are trying to capture some of that magic. In particular, the Hasbro universe is of great interest to me... a kid (albeit a big one now) that has grown-up with these properties over the past 30+ years and hopes to see them fully-realized in all their potential on the big screen -- especially G.I. Joe and M.A.S.K. Yesterday morning, the players in the "top talent writers room" responsible for bringing these stories to the screen were revealed, and there's some heavy hitters in the mix.
I really need an Xbox One. With all the great games coming out and the shift finally moving into "current-gen-only," it's pretty much definitive at this point - though I will say that Darth Vader Edition PS4 looks pretty sweet. But Xbox is familiar territory for me, and games like this one - TOY SOLDIERS: WAR CHEST HALL OF FAME EDITION make me want the upgrade. Ubisoft managed to take their TOY SOLDIERS game, drop in the Brotherhood of Assassins from ASSASSIN'S CREED, and somehow bring HE-MAN & THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE and G.I. JOE into the mix. That's right - Mattel vs. Hasbro - just like real life!
Among the toys that I had when I was a kid, few rivaled the adventures I had with my G.I. JOE: A REAL AMERICAN HERO action figures. Along with STAR WARS, MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE and TRANSFORMERS, they were one of the big guns, and I still remember receiving my first 'Joe as a birthday present in 1982. It was the LASER RIFLE TROOPER, CODENAME: FLASH, and I received him along with the JET PROPULSION MOBILE UNIT (JUMP). While most of my toys were sold-off somewhere around 1988, I still have a case of loose 'Joe figures in storage somewhere, and I'm pretty sure that FLASH is one of the guys who survived. The reason for the nostalgia tonight is that Hasbro has announced a partnership with Toys "R" Us for the 50th Anniversary of G.I. JOE, and with it, a new line of toys. It's very exciting, and I've got all the details, right here on THE ROCK FATHER... and believe me, I'm saving the best for last.
HASBRO's G.I. JOE and TRANSFORMERS lines are legendary. For a kid like me (I'm 36), the combined punch of the original animated series' and the seemingly never-ending stream of new toys made a major impact. Throw in a third factor - the monthly comic books published by MARVEL - and the adventure was truly a transmedia experience before "transmedia" was even a word. With no VOD, DVD, BD or even VHS (for us), the troops of COBRA and 'JOE would find their battles fought regularly via imagination, with our backyard swingset (the old "T" shaped variety) standing in for G.I. JOE headquarters and Cobra's TERROR DROME. Occasionally, there would be crossovers... with representatives of the Autobots and Decepticons joining the skirmish (with an occasional STAR WARS figure, too).
The ten-year-old version of me is very disappointed. A new G.I. JOE movie came out this year, and I haven't seen it. Sure, I wasn't a big fan of the first live-action 'Joe flick (I had better adventures playing with my old Hasbro action figures in the backyard 30 years ago), but the previews I'd seen for the new one looked pretty good. If you missed it on the big screen as did I, this July you can catch up when G.I. JOE: RETALIATION comes home. The film will hit Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD and On Demand July 30, 2013 from Paramount Home Media Distribution, with a digital release two weeks early on July 16 th. Full specs on each release hit Rock Father HQ this evening, and all can be found below.