Mickey Mouse as A VENDOR – Moving Toys

Take a seat, kids, this is going to be a longer one! But don’t worry, if you supply the drinks, I’ll supply the snacks! Well, not me exactly, but Mickey Mouse will serve up some popped corn, burgers, fries, and a soda. Oh, and he’ll even throw in a flower for your best girl!

I have three different vending-themed toys to show you today, complete with a video showing them in action. So without further ado, and because I’m a wee bit peckish, let’s flag them down and do some business:

Ready for Business

Mickey has always been industrious. With his pals Donald and Goofy, he’s been everything from a window washer to a clock cleaner, and just about everything else too! But first, let’s see him work his route as a Corn Popper vendor:

This moving toy was made by the illco company. It has ‘bump and go’ action (which means when he hits something, he can turn and keep going), is musical (see video below and make your own evaluation of that feature), and has balls that pop up and down as Mickey moves back and forth. This is a battery operated toy with an on/off switch that controls the action.

A view of the bottom of this toy shows the circular disc with wheels that controls the unique turning feature. Mickey can swerve as he moves forwards and backwards (again, see video below). These three toys have different movement paths. The one above is erratic in its movements.

Next, Mickey stays with the vending industry but changes his wares to… flowers:

Flower Vendor

Note the ‘Hidden Mickey’ motif on the vehicle. This is a wind-up toy. Mickey now moves only in a small circle.

This toy has no manufacturing details stamped on it but it does say it was sold by the Disney Store.

That’s one happy flower!

Now it’s time for that snack I promised earlier. Mickey is now a food vendor serving up a standard fare of American favorites:

You can tell that this toy has some similarities to the last one shown above. But this one has a friction mechanism for propulsion. You have to pull Mickey backwards and then let him go. And boy does he go! But now, only in a straight line. Again, be sure to watch the short video below to see for yourself.

Not surprisingly, this toy is also a Disney Store exclusive. And note this toy also has a ‘Hidden Mickey’ motif.

What, no hotdogs? Oh well, at least the burger has cheese!

Now if you’re ready, it’s time to see all three of these little guys in action! But be warned: Mickey’s Corn Popper has music that makes the ‘It’s a Small World’ song seem like a pleasing Sonnet. You are warned:

So how did you like that? I bet it’ll take a while to get that Mickey’s Corn Popper tune out of your head!

FUN FACTS: In North America, Mickey would be referred to as a Vendor for selling his wares in such a manner. In Europe, the term for a street entertainer is ‘Busker’. I thought that this term also fit these toys as Mickey isn’t just selling from these ‘carts’, but also entertaining as he careens around and plays his music. What do you think? Is Mickey a ‘Vendor’ or a ‘Busker’?

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Disney Character Fashions Donald Duck Baseball Cap

Wearing a goofy hat at a Disney Park is almost a rite of passage for any Disney fan. The weirder the better! I have an actual Goofy hat, buck teeth with ears and all, that I wear without shame or embarrassment. In the Parks. But I don’t think many of us come home and then wear these unique head toppers to the local grocery store!

Can you imagine walking into your local Costco wearing this:

The Ugly Duckling’s Cousin?!?

Okay, although Donald may not be a real looker, he isn’t ugly. Sorry Mr. Duck! It’s lucky for me that he appears to have a smile on his bill. He must be in a good mood.

If you wear this hat, you should be aware that you are wearing a hat that is wearing a hat. Yup. That’s weird. Of course, you could make it weirder by wearing a hat and then putting this hat that is wearing a hat over that hat so that you’d be wearing three hats. Yes. You could. But I wouldn’t.

Donald looks a little freakier when you look inside the cap and see his eyes, or the back of his eyes, looking back at you! Spooky! This Dapper Drake’s chapeau was released as part of the Disney Character Fashions line. It could be from the 1980’s according to a bit of research done on the all-knowing Internet.

The manufacturer is labeled as Animated Products Inc. of Raleigh, NC. I can’t find them on the Web now but did find a similar supplier who is currently handling Disney along with other IP’s. They are called Animated Apparel Co. and are obviously a newer enterprise. But you may enjoy what they have to offer!

Okay, he does have a striking profile!

Would you wear this Fowl Fedora in public?

FUN FACTS: A duck brain is divided into two halves. In Donald’s case, that would be ‘calm’ and ‘angry’. But for every other duck, this means that one half of the brain can rest while the other half stays alert. The only time a duck rests both sides of its brain at the same time is when it feels safe within a flock. And now you are a Professor of Quackology.

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View-Master Disney Theme Park Stereo Picture Reels

One of the most inexpensive ways to remember your trip to Disneyland or Walt Disney World was the purchase of View-Master stereo picture reels. Especially if you didn’t own a camera!

The View-Master system was introduced in 1939, four years after the advent of Kodachrome color film made the use of small high-quality photographic color images practical. Tourist attraction and travel views predominated in View-Master’s early lists of reels, most of which were meant to be interesting to users of all ages.

Disney wasted no time licensing its Theme Parks and characters for our 3D pleasure! Which is good for those of us who need a fix between visits!

Front of Package

Neither of the two sets I’m sharing today came with a booklet. Some did have a 16-page insert detailing the contents, but this was usually if the subject matter was more of a story, like the Sleeping Beauty set I also have.

These reels contain views of various rides and attractions that one would have found around the Park. It makes a nice time capsule to look back on as old attractions become extinct.

And now we switch coasts and Parks:

Front of Package

We are now looking in on a pool of dangerous hippos and elephants. So please, sit still and don’t rock the blog! These huge creatures are quite curious and could easily upset our website. So please, don’t do anything that might attract them! Like clicking the lever on your View-Master Viewer:

Phew! That was close! Thank you for cooperating. We can now continue…

It’s fun to look at the list of attractions and see which ones you’ve ridden and which ones are now gone. Fun, and a little sad!

Some day I hope to perfect a way to successfully film the images on these reels.

Posted in Attractions, Collectibles, Disneyland, History, Merchandise, Theme Parks, Travel, Walt Disney World | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pathéscope 9.5 mm Mickey Mouse Film Box

9.5 mm film is an amateur film format introduced by Pathé in 1922. It was conceived initially as an inexpensive format to provide copies of commercially made films to home users.

The format uses a single, central perforation (sprocket hole) between each pair of frames, or images, as opposed to the more common configuration which has perforations on each side of the image. The single hole allowed more of the film to be used for the actual image. The perforation in the film is invisible to viewers.

The example I have only has one piece of film strip left within the cartridge and it is blank. So the film won’t be viewed by me anytime soon!

However, I bought this item for its display value, and not so that I could screen the film itself. I don’t have the special projector needed anyway. So… I just liked the box!

The sides of the box have a variety of information. The middle image above shows some numbers and text that seems to read ‘Band Master’. With some research on the Internet, I found that the number 30126 is a reference to the content of the film contained in the box, namely Barnyard Concert (1930), conducted of course by Bandmaster Mickey. It was an animated Black and White presentation with no sound.

The cartridge has the name of a different film than the one that should be in this box: At Home with Lions (no year found). This was a non-Disney ‘interest’ film and was a Black and White silent presentation. It also states that this copy was printed in England and was number 537 in the catalogue. So I have a mismatched set of box and reel.

From the early 1930’s, once Pathéscope had set up their own laboratories at Cricklewood, North London, they began preparing most film releases themselves. This began the UK numbering with the main series starting at 30000. So this helps us to date our artifact (the box, anyway) from the mid-30’s. A 90000 series began around 1957/58 when the Pathéscope company had been reorganized into Pathéscope (Great Britain) Ltd. So our artifact is no newer than the mid-50’s.

This little gem has been sitting on my display shelf for years and I never knew half of this information until I did the research for this post. I now know that I have a mismatched item and that my film is missing!

I’m not sure how I feel about this.

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Disney-themed MASKS from the Disney Store

Are we still hoping to see an end to the pandemic? But then what would we do with all our cool and stylish Disney masks? Mark my words: All those who said they hated to wear them will be the first to petition Disney to let them continue to wear them at the Parks when the lockdowns have ended! Okay. Maybe not. But still… the masks are so cool!

I – Hidden Mickey – Walt Disney World

What does that even mean? Oh, I see: I HEART/LOVE Walt Disney World. Now that makes more sense!

I have been trying to get a certain pattern for ages but they are always sold out. Even the eBay scalpers don’t have the one I want! But I did find two that will fill the void until the day I find my favorite. The first you can see opened above. The second opened one is a little lower down:

The Pizza Planet mask fits into my collection perfectly as I also have a Pizza Planet t-shirt and a Pizza Planet baseball cap. So now I can really get people to look at me sideways when I’m in public as I wear the entire ensemble!

The problem with Disney masks in the beginning was the sizing. Even the large ones were way too small for adults. But now they have changed that and this XL version is the perfect fit for me.

Now be sure to read the full disclaimer on each mask: Not for surgical or industrial use. So if you have to perform surgery, please do not use your Disney mask with the ‘Goofy mouth’ image. It may erode the patient’s confidence in you.

And speaking of Goofy:

Man Modeling… or Muzzled

I’ll let you decide which would be preferred.

And now for a quick medical evaluation: There is no way to put a filter in these masks. There are two layers and so the mask should provide a basic level of protection. However, here is something to consider:

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends wearing fabric face masks in public spaces where social distancing isn’t possible. Three layers are ideal for a fabric face mask. You can adjust your existing face mask to fit the new criteria.

It does say ‘ideal’ and not ‘mandatory’. So each person must make their own evaluation of the mask used for their personal protection and that of their family. This text is given here for information purposes only and is not intended to impose a decision on our readers.

Posted in Clothing, Disney Store, Fashion, Health, Merchandise, Pixar, Theme Parks, Walt Disney World | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

FUNKO MINIS Mickey at the Matterhorn Bobsleds Attraction

Vinyl figures are a huge business at the moment. Funko is definitely one of the leaders in merchandise featuring the Disney brand and its host of characters. Variations seem to be the name of the money-making game as oversized and undersized (or Funko Minis) versions beckon the consumer to shell out again for the same characters.

Which I do. And did. Disneyland had it’s lonely 65th Anniversary (in 2020) during the as-yet ongoing worldwide pandemic but that didn’t stop the merchandise! I found a nice vinyl figure that combines both a beloved character with an iconic Disneyland attraction:

Box Front

True Story: I’ve only been to Disneyland once. I knew I had to ride the Matterhorn! But like a rookie, I went in blind, and almost lost my spine to the mistake. Ouch! The Matterhorn Bobsleds are perhaps the most uncomfortable ride vehicles ever. While recovering from what felt like an assault on my person, I learned that I rode this attraction after a refurbishment to make the ride smoother! My goodness, how bad was it before???

Box Top & Box Bottom

Mickey Mouse riding the Matterhorn Bobsleds (with a smile on his face?!?) is the third release in a set of seven.

Box Back

So we have two for Mad Tea Party, two for Peter Pan’s Flight, and two for Dumbo the Flying Elephant, but Mickey had to ride alone, as the Matterhorn Bobsleds only get one figure. I think that makes my point of how bad this ride is: No one else would risk it!

I also like the graphics on the back of the box. The simplistic renderings of other attractions are charming. And speaking of charming, let’s join Mickey:

I think I just figured out why Mickey is smiling: He hasn’t entered the ride yet! He is giddy with anticipation… that won’t last long. If you’ve had a less than splendiferous ride on the Matterhorn, let me know in the comments, please! It may help you to get some closure on the experience.

To see a set of normal size Funko Pop! figures themed after Splash Mountain, just click the link. Or to see an example of the oversized figures, check out this one themed after the Jungle Cruise. Both are in keeping with our Theme Park Attraction motif.

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America on Parade Metal Tray

The United States of America celebrated it’s 200th Birthday, or Bicentennial, on July 4th, 1976. Disneyland and Walt Disney World started celebrating early starting on June 6th, 1975 and continued to do so through September 6th, 1976. The anchor for the festivities was a spectacular parade that served as a daytime and nighttime extravaganza.

There were plenty of souvenirs created to commemorate the event, such as this metal tray:

If you click on over to our previous post entitled America on Parade Lunch Box you’ll see this very image repeated.

Not much to see back here

Other than some residual glue left behind by the original price tag, there isn’t much to see on the back of the tray.

Disney liked to use strange characters during the 1970’s. EPCOT had walk-around characters with oversized heads that freaked people out, but America on Parade said: ‘Hold my beer!’ Each of the parade performers sported costumes appropriate to the float around which they danced, as well as enormous heads fixed on a custom-built apparatus for support, with the performer looking through the neck. Have a look:

Is it the beginning of the Zombie Apocalypse?

The floats were amazing and technical marvels, but these guys? Wow, take a moment to blink, fellas! No wonder some found them a bit unnerving.

FUN FACTS: This parade was a temporary replacement for Disneyland’s and the Magic Kingdom’s The Main Street Electrical Parade. Also, the Sherman Brothers (who had left the Disney Studios by the time of the Bicentennial) were asked to write a specialty song. They provided a tune called “The Glorious Fourth” which was performed during the parade.

Posted in Anniversaries, Attractions, Collectibles, Disneyland, Merchandise, Parades, Theme Parks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Emperor’s New Groove Coffee Mug with Swivel Feature

In the year 2000, Disney released The Emperor’s New Groove, a little movie nobody knew how to take. I loved it! The general idea is that Emperor Kuzco is turned into a llama by his ex-administrator Yzma, and must now regain his throne with the help of Pacha, the gentle llama herder. Hijinks ensue.

“Yay! I’m a Llama again! Wait…” That is perhaps my most favorite quote from this movie. Although there are so many more!

While visiting a local Disney Store recently, we had to make our purchase up to $50.00 in order to obtain a coupon for $25.00 off our next purchase of $50.00 or more. We were less than $2.00 short! We’d been all over the store and looked at everything… or so we thought.

Over in a corner, on a discount rack, pushed almost out of sight, was this:

Let’s start with the Bad Guys

So it became my gift to me. I’m so happy! As you can see, it has some cool concept artwork rendered in full colour, not in the linework of most mugs sporting that motif.

But what really sold it for me was the unique swivel feature: The bottle of poison. The poison for Kuzco. The poison chosen specifically to kill Kuzco. Kuzco’s poison. You can spin the bottle and see a Llama on one side and a skull on the other:

But not to be left out or outdone, Yzma just had to put her two cents in and leave her mark on the mug:

Nothing like a Great Quote

And speaking of great quotes: “Squeak Squeakity Squeak Squeaken.” No, I don’t know what it means either.

This mug was released in 2020 to commemorate the 20th Anniversary of the original release of the film.

If you’re wondering, the mug cost me a little over $10.00 after a discount. So I ended up being almost $8.00 over what I needed for the coupon. So they got me to spend more to save later! Wait…

For more fun with the Emperor, just pull the lever… err, click the link, to see some cool Lithographs, also from the Disney Store.

Posted in Animation, Anniversaries, Ceramics, Characters, Collectibles, Disney Store, Food, Kitchen | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

BOOK REVIEW: Walt Disney – His Life in Pictures

Publisher: Disney Press

Year: 2009

Pages: 66

Type: Hardcover

ISBN: 978-1-4231-2105-3

We wanted to keep him to ourselves.” – Diane Disney Miller

Wouldn’t you? Thankfully for the world at large Walt Disney’s children didn’t get their wish! The man, husband, and father was shared and we all enjoyed a great genius that made our lives a little bit better.

The overleaf tells us: “Through pictures, this intriguing book traces Walt’s life from his boyhood in Missouri through his beginnings in Hollywood, the building of his film studio empire, and the creation of his world-famous theme parks. Much of Walt’s story is told in his own words through excerpts from interviews and films made during his lifetime.”

Walt’s iconic signature in embossed on the hardcover of the book itself but is hidden under the dustjacket. I always look under the dustjacket of a book to see what lies underneath!

The book is divided into decades. This makes it easier to follow Walt through his most pivotal moments. I also appreciate this approach as I feel it gives each reader the chance to focus on the decade when they became familiar with Walt. It is the 1960’s era, with the Wonderful World of Color, that strikes a cord of nostalgia for me.

I won’t show too many pages, although I’m tempted, but instead just feature two spreads that will serve to show the format of the book:

The 1940’s
The 1950’s

The Walt Disney Archives provided the bulk of the images used in the book. Many might be familiar to you, but remember, now you can see them in context as they are laid out chronologically.

The 1960’s

I remember first being aware of Walt Disney only years after his passing. I loved to watch The Wonderful World of Color to see his grandfatherly-like introduction to each show. The portrait above is how I knew Walt and I was unaware that the man I was seeing was no longer with us. It wouldn’t be until the late 1970’s that I clued in and I admit it was a blow to my young mind and heart!

If you had a similar experience, this book will fill in the missing years of Walt’s life and career in an easy to read way that is enjoyable and informative. You can currently buy this book on Amazon for just over $16.00 CAN.

If magazines are more your style, please read my review of LIFE – Special Magazine on Walt Disney.

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Pixar’s UP Pencil Holder with 6 Pencils

A quick trip to the Disney Store added several new items to my collection. My wife and I really enjoyed the Pixar movie UP but have found that it doesn’t always get as well represented in the merchandise department as other Pixar properties. So seeing a large UP display was an unexpected treat!

I love items that are unusual and this Pencil Holder fits the bill perfectly:

Front Side

There are six pencils in the set with each having a cluster of three balloons atop them. Blue, purple, yellow, orange, green, and pink varieties are used.

Front and Back of Packaging

The box is pretty much uninspired so it rests in a landfill now. This piece needs to be out of its packaging and on display!

Right Side and Back Side

Left Side and Top

The main building is 7″ tall with the overall height raising to just over 10″ tall with the pencils inserted. You’ll notice that the house itself (above, right) has three balloons permanently attached to the chimney.

Bottom

Dug Pencil / UP House Pencil / Grape Soda Pencil

Although there are six pencils there are only three stem designs. And in case you were wondering, the balloons are indeed erasers.

For only $16.99 US or $23.99 CAN retail, you just can’t go wrong with this collectible!

Please check out my other cool UP house merchandise! It’s a Cookie Jar. But if it’s writing utensils you’re into, I do have a Winnie the Pooh pen holder, but that will have to wait for another time.

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