Monday, March 31, 2014

Doll-A-Day 90: Kermit the Frog by Palisades

  As I said yesterday, the girls and I went to see The Muppets Most Wanted on Saturday night.While I didn't think it was quite as funny, or quite as accurate to the old Muppets as the last movie, it was still good. I would recommend it for all ages. The Muppets have always been for everybody, and that's still true.The humour works on different levels for different ages.
  The voices, now done mostly by performers new to the characters, were better than ever this time.(During the last Muppet movie Fozzie seemed to frequently forget which voice to use.) I also liked that the movie relied less on human lead actors, allowing The Muppets to be the stars of their own movie again. (The tendency to believe comic characters can't carry a movie on their own brings to mind the unnecessary romantic leads in Marx Brothers movies, or the later,non-Hal Roach Laurel and Hardy movies. They're not needed, and not really what you came to see.)The human lead characters in the last movie actually worked well, but then, they weren't exactly like regular people anyway. (He really was a "Muppet of a man"!)
  One of only two 'complaints', (If you can call them that.), that I had with Muppets Most Wanted was that during Miss Piggy's big solo number, she was repeatedly  'bested' by Celine Dion. Miss Piggy would never have stood for that! (Hey Celine! Can you say "HIIII YAH!") Also, I was expecting Miss Piggy to whack herself in the chest Celine Dion style, and it never happened. My other 'complaint' was that new character Walter took over some of the lines and action that would normally have gone to Gonzo or Scooter. Walter is ok, and I don't dislike him. But he's just there. He's not funny. I know kids who were introduced to the Muppets with the last movie will think of Walter as a lead character, but really, I don't think he has it in him.(What he has 'in him' is an arm, but you know what I mean.)
  There were still plenty of references to past Muppet adventures and habits, so lots of inside jokes for us old Muppet fans. Younger kids may not be familiar with the older Muppets shows and movies, but if yours aren't, GET BUSY! Get those kids watching some Muppet stuff! You might find you enjoy it as much (or more!) than they do!   
  It may seem old fashioned to use actual Muppets instead of CGI these days, but I think it's still better to have 'real' Muppets. Star Wars started using a CGI Yoda instead of an actual puppet, and you can tell. It's just not the same. Sure, he can do a lot more stuff, and move better, but he looks like an animation.Real Muppets look like real Muppets.There's still something to be said for living, walking, talking TOYS. It's still cool!
  Today's doll is a 'real' Muppet. It's the 25 Years of The Muppet Show Kermit action figure by Palisades.

Technically, this Kermit is an action figure.Kermit is about 4 and 1/2" tall. He came with his 'Kermit' coffee mug, a Muppet Show TV camera, and a Muppet Show base.

He has limited poseability. His head turns,his left arm can move more than his right (you may not know this, but if you watch you'll see that all Muppets are left handed. This has something to do with how it looks to the muppeteer in performance.), and his right leg moves.He can stand on his own though, even if somewhat precariously.
I HAD to include this picture. If you read this blog at all, you'll know that I always have trouble with what I have come to call "the one hair". That one hair that's always out of place.I should have been safe with Kermit, right? He has no hair! But after I took this I noticed that at the base of the camera: the one hair! It's mine!

The accuracy to each character in the Palisades toys was great. (They even textured the figures to look like the felt or fur of the particular Muppet, rather than just making them of smooth plastic.) To someone who isn't a Muppet fan, it may seem that it wouldn't be difficult to make the toys look like the real Muppets. It's harder than you think though.There's real personality in those felt and furry faces.
Kermit's collar is a soft rubber.

They also had loads of really cool little accessories. Kermit has the TV Camera, Beauregard came with a great mop bucket,(The kind where you pull the handle to squeeze the mop.), Scooter with a popcorn cart,etc.

I started collecting Muppets when I was a kid. I bought the Bert and Oscar Sesame Street puppets, (They must have been out of Ernie.) with my birthday money one year, when I was far too old for Sesame Street.(Is anybody ever completely too old for Sesame Street though? I enjoyed watching it with my kids!You have to love the old Grover and Bert and Ernie sketches!)I also amassed quite a collection of little rubber Sesame Street finger puppets when I was even older. I still have all of them. Emma played with the finger puppets quite a lot when she was tiny, and started a collection of her own.I always say I had to have all three of my kids so I had somebody to enjoy all of my interests with me. Fuzzy was my partner for Johnny Quest, dinosaurs,pirates, and knights. Ivy was my Shirley Temple kid. Emma was always my Muppets kid, and she still is. (She spent most of the winter wearing her Kermit hat, until she  got her Regular Show hat.)
  I also have one somewhat embarrassing but funny Muppet story which I'll relate someday...
   And yes, I eat my cereal out of my Kermit bowl every morning!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Doll-A-Day 89: Russian Doll

Ken's at work, Fuzzy is asleep, since he works nights, and Ivy isn't feeling well. So I have spent the day by myself.(Apart from visits to Ivy's room to remove her..uhh...'leftovers'.) I guess that's ok. Last night Emma, Ivy and I went to see The Muppets Most Wanted,(which I'll talk about soon.), and Emma stayed for dinner and tv. That was nice.We don't get much relaxed time with Emma these days. She is so busy with work and her radio show.It was nice to be able to just laze around with her.
  The snow is melting and it's not too bad outside. Fuzz brought me a tomato plant thingy today, which I'm going to start inside now and hope it gets to go outside SOMEDAY!
  Today's dolls is this cute little doll from Russia, or Ukraine, that I know absolutely nothing about.
As you can see, my garlic is greening up quite nicely! It doesn't mind the cold,(as long as it's not the abnormally cold weather we had this winter.)

I think it's a 'she'. She's about 10" tall.
Her eyelashes aren't 'hair'. They're plastic.

She chose to pose in what was left of our quickly melting snow. She said it made her feel at home.

One side of her hair needs redone, but she has all of her original clothes, and her boots.
You can see where the snow ends in an even line. That's where our neighbors, the Selfish Giants, fence casts shade. It stays snowy there where the sun doesn't shine.

I have a couple of other Russian dolls, and they seem to be very poorly made , of cheap plastic that breaks very easily.

They are cute though.

The plastic they are made of has a translucent quality and gives them a glowy complexion.

Kind of makes you want to whistle the Peter and the Wolf music, doesn't it?
 Just a reminder, my one year anniversary of this blog is coming up in May. If my number of followers picks up significantly by then, I am considering doing a giveaway.Just saying...
  See you tomorrow with another doll.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Doll-A-Day 88: Skipper Saturday: Pose N Play Skipper

And so it's SNOWING again. We've gotten probably a couple of inches since this morning. It's very windy and freezing cold. It SHOULD be Spring weather by now. Well, for quite a while now.
  Today's Skipper is one I haven't done at all yet. She's a Pose 'n Play Skipper from 1973.
Skipper wakes up feeling decidedly chilly. Maybe she made the wrong decision to sleep by the patio window in her sleeping bag last night.
"What in the world?!"
"You have got to be kidding me!"

"It's snowing? AGAIN?!"
Pose 'n' Play Skipper has the same body as Living Skipper, with the rubber covered, jointed elbows and knees, and jointed wrists.


She gets up to look out at the wintery, white world.

"Is it ever going to be Spring?"
Huge, fluffy flakes are swirling around.

She has a totally different head though. Pose 'n' Play Skippers don't have rooted eyelashes, and they have shorter, softer hair in double pony tails, with wispy bangs. Their face paint is soft and they have a glow-y complexion.
"Well, there goes that bike ride."

They're very pretty dolls, and I think they're very underrated by collectors.
The ground is covered with snow, and more keeps falling.

She's wearing The Get Ups and Go fashion Super Dreamy for Pajama Parties, from 1973-74.

The cozy footy pajama set includes top, footy bottoms, a green night cap,(which I don't have.), and matching sleeping bag. (I am also missing the white furry cat and pink hair curlers.)

"Well, no reason to get up early I guess!"

"I can't believe this."

"I know one thing."
"I'm going back to bed!"
"I really wanted to go on that bike ride..."
"It's freezing next to this window."
"I'm taking this sleeping bag back to my room.And I'm not coming out until Spring!"

And yes, this was the view out of our window today! And also yes, I decided to turn the tile she was sitting on mid way through. I started out thinking it looked like tile with the brown side up, but then I changed it.  I was in a hurry to play games with Ken and Ivy, so I didn't redo it. So sue me.
See you tomorrow for another doll.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Doll-A-Day 87:Another Doll of My Own Making: Papa George Resque Doll

Today's doll is another I made.

His name is George Resque Doll, but you can call him Papa.
 I made him for a customer who bought three others and wanted a father to go with the rest of the family.
This is Mama doll. I can't remember her real name.

I think he may be just about my favourite doll I've made. I was so sorry to see him go!
His thumbs looked fine when his arms were down, but when he does this pose they are on the bottom! They should be at the top of his hands when he does this, but there is no way to let him do both poses and have his thumbs in the right place both ways.

I don't have a picture of him next to a ruler, and I don't remember how tall he is. I know he isn't over 2 and a half inches though. 
I made him to match Mama Doll, s since she was looking to the left I made him look to the right, so they could look at each other. (Unless of course,you put them on the wrong sides,in which case they will refuse to look at each other.)They look to be having a slight altercation right now.
The rest of the family is two daughters with red hair. I'll show them eventually.

I put a lot of time into Papa. I made a doll I would love to have.(Which is one of the reasons I hated to let him go. I nearly made her another!) He has a three piece suit, with a watch pocket, and even a watch 'chain'.
I love how his eyes came out.

He's even wearing cloth spats on his shiny black shoes.
He's another of my tiny dolls with a felt covered wire armature and wooden head. His clothes are all cloth. His pants even have cuffs!
Tomorrow is Skipper Saturday.Be there or go Skipperless.