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Meltdown Comics Closing April 1st

More sad news from the land of toys and comics and comedy. Meltdown Comics will be closing down beginning on April 1st 2018. The Los Angeles nerd-Mecca landmark has been ground zero for so much in the art world. While I unfortunately lost touch with Gaston in recent years, you can see how much Plastic and Plush was influenced by him and Meltdown. Just look back through our archives at everything Meltdown-related. They were one of the first galleries that we regularly covered, 10-plus years ago. In addition to comic books, art, and toys, the Comics in Meltdown's name could also be a reference to the number of comedians that made the back room their home away from home.

So, after 25 years, we say goodbye to Meltdown Comics - one of the originators.

The State of the Toy World

If you’ve been living under a rock for the past week, you might not have seen that Toys “R” Us is going out of business (at least in the United States). One of the same players behind the downfall of Kay-Bee Toys, Bain Capital (yes, the one founded by Mitt Romney) has plunged their second leading toy store into insolvency. There is some talk about Amazon purchasing some of the stores, as well as rumors of KB Toys coming back from the dead. But I can’t imagine either of those options coming to fruition.

Growing up in the 1980’s, specialized big-box type toy stores will always have a fond place in my heart. But online giants like Amazon (and even Wal-Mart and Target) have robbed that immersive experience from this latest generation of kids.

I feel this is indicative of the entire toy industry as a whole. No one wants to take chances. Toy companies over-saturate the aisles were certain big name licenses. They’ve (I’m looking at you Hasbro) even gone towards crowd-funding projects. I understand why the artist trying to release his/her small run piece would decide to use this route, but it just seems lazy from a company like Hasbro (do some research, guys).

Previous to the Great Recession, online designer toy boutiques were thriving. Small, upstart toy companies were producing amazing pieces from artists most folks had never heard of. Heck, this site even used to have a plethora of advertisers. The recession ended all of that for a lot of people. 

Maybe it’s just that every 10 or so years, something has to shake up the toy industry. It’s cyclical. Gone are the days of the 80’s, where toy companies generated a large portion of television entertainment for children...to use to sell them their toys the cartoons were based on. Welcome to the land of licensed toys from the latest box office hit/flop. And goodbye creativity.

Trashbot & Friends Playset

Designer Philip Lee, the man behind the Classicbot/Macinbot, has announced the new Trashbot & Friends Playset. The pre-order window just opened up. Trashbot & Friends, a playset inspired by classic desktop icons, introduces two fresh figures – Trashbot and Errorbot. These retro icons include accessories such as the Disk icon, the Mail icon and the Folder. You can pre-order the entire playset for $29.00.

Be My Baby Pink Jizo-Anarchio Release

Devil's Head Productions is celebrating February 14th (Valentine's Day) with the release of the Be My Baby Pink Jizo-Anarchio vinyl. The perfect Valentine's Day gift for that special someone who is a toy enthusiast, these Jizos have been cast in soft clear Japanese vinyl and painted from the inside out with a soft baby pink. As a bonus, they will be sold in a blind bag format so that one lucky person will end up with a one off piece red lamé paint. You'll be able to pick one up on Valentine''s Day for $30.00.

Fidget Cube Collectibles Series – Marvel

Antsy Labs, the folks who brought the Fidget Cube to the world, has released the Fidget Cube Collectibles Series. The Collectibles series currently features Marvel comics characters...including Iron Man, Rocket Raccoon, Baby Groot, Star-Lord, Spider-Man, Drax, Hulk, and Thor. Each one of these licensed Fidget Cubes sells for $12.99.

If you're not familiar with the Fidget Cube...it has six sides. Each side features something to fidget with: Click. Glide. Flip. Breathe. Roll. Spin.