Monday, December 29, 2014

End of 2014: Last Update of the Year & Knuckles Musing

The last update of 2014 goes out on a decent note:
There was finally an ok amount of mail to produce an update without reaching into the old stuff / the update taking forever. Hopefully it's a good sign for the upcoming year that products will flow out decently without droughts.

If you are looking for Sonic tees, be sure to visit stores like JC Penny & Sears NOW because 'after xmas clearance' is going on. There can be markdowns like 40% off, which makes their already reasonably priced shirts even lower. But, it's hit or miss if you go because other people like bargains too and deals like that can sell out. Don't wait until the new year, shop now if you're going to.

Stuff that's on the way out:
All stars Racing: Toys & clothes are generally on clearance. The game is 'old news', and so is its merch. If you want anything from it, pick it up. The All Stars Tees like the green one on this update are down around 3 bucks...shows you how much they want those designs gone.

Clothing vs. Clothing:
Boom vs. Everything Else - Unlike in action figures, Boom has not replaced all clothing styles. I'm kind of thinking it won't, too. There's enough mens wear to keep out "a kiddie show" from taking over. Variety is better than less variety. If someone doesn't know/like Boom, they still ought to be able to have something with Sonic on it.

Item of the week:
Desk set. Been a long time since Sonic school supplies appeared, which is sad because it's something anyone can use and is usually reasonably priced. Hopefully this set appears easily in a national store anyone can get to.

The "Best Knuckles"
As you'll have seen this update contains Tomy's own photo for their Boom plush Knuckles. The submitter described it as "Best", and by 'best' probably means goofiest looking ever. The poor thing looks so annoyed too, it just adds the cherry of satire sort of on top. What's the problem? It's not that Tomy is bad at dolls, it's that the Boom design doesn't translate well into plush. None of the characters are really suited for plush, they threw details at the models for whatever reason, and the more detail something has, the harder/more expensive it is to do as a plush. Stockings, bandages, bracelets, complicated socks, accessories all's not that those are inherently BAD it's just they make plush difficult.

Boom Knuckles does not fit in - Not quite Sally
Remember how Sally used to look in the Archie Sonic comics? She had this big head, but then she had this perfectly human little barbie body with human arms, legs, and feet. Little proportionate hands without gloves, sculpted thighs, clear knees, round/obvious butt/hips, tiny proportionate feet, etc was like they added a character from a completely different show/style. (Why did they do that? They had nothing to go on, when the comic started there were literally 3 cannon characters, one of which was a circle shape man. So it's not like that is anyone's fault.)

Boom Knuckles is a little bit the same way.
The only one comparable is Big the Cat...remember Blaze is also a cat. They're both THE SAME ANIMAL yet look how different Big looks. Sure he was created to be "uncool" on purpose (I still don't think anyone knows why they'd deliberately make a character like that) Boom Knuckles just looks like someone stretched him out. They weren't paying attention to the character designs when they made him. The issue has come up in discussions because....

Were they just out to "Flanderize Knuckles"?
Flanderize: "The act of taking a single (often minor) action or trait of a character within a work and exaggerating it more and more over time until it completely consumes the character. Most always, the trait/action becomes completely outlandish and it becomes their defining characteristic. Sitcoms and Sitcom characters are particularly susceptible to this, as are peripheral characters." TV TROPES

*Flanderizing is very easy to do. It provides content creators with an easy out to 'make up chars' quickly and have them do things without putting in any effort. It's a lazy, cheap shot.

Ex. Knuckles was tricked by Eggman once when he debuted in Sonic 3, thus he must be very stupid, and also illiterate*. Who is always stupid? Strong guys. Thug type big guys are always dumb. No one ever gets tired of seeing stereotypes, the same character over and over in every show! Thus, he must be both strong AND stupid. That will be very funny, and we'll Flanderize that because it's so easy!

*Yes is IS illiterate, he says so in the show itself. If that's not Flanderizing "he is stupid" I don't know what is. Should this upset Knuckles fans? Yes.

Next week:
New year! Will it bring new stuff? Yes, Japan has let out a few things that should appear. The 2015 calendar, of course, will be included. Hopefully the new year brings more fun, more action figures and even more great Sonic things!