Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and that means Black Friday is upon us. As stores gear up for their biggest sale day of the year, it’s time for us to take a trip down the lanes of toy merchandise and see where things are at. Let’s take a peek into the land of holiday shopping as it’s time for… TALES FROM THE TOY AISLE PRE-BLACK FRIDAY EDITION!
In the run up to Black Friday, I headed out today and visited two Toys R Us locations, a K-Mart and a Walmart. Each store was gearing up for their big sale day. There were already some deals to be had, but what was the #1 trend I noticed?
Ninja Turtles is the hottest toy line on the planet! Yes, it’s true… The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are back and sales are totally gangbusters. One Toys R Us location was completely wiped out. This TRU was previously stocked with every single peg full of Turtles’ toys.
But now? Nothing was left but a few roleplay toys and a backpack. Remember those $120 Sewer Lair playsets that nobody said would sell? Yeah, they were all gone too. But perhaps this is just a freak occurrence at one particular Toys R Us?
Each and every store I went to, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were kings of the aisle.
Another Toys R Us tried to pretend that the Ninja Tutles didn’t even exist. Their whole section had been wiped out, just as the other TRU, but instead of leaving the shelves as a barren wasteland, they “flexed” Power Rangers into that spot. I have to admit, I take a bit of pride in seeing that the Power Rangers are warming shelves while the TMNT are selling like hotcakes, because it was the Rangers who more or less ended the Turtles’ toy aisle dominance in the 90’s.
It’s not just Geoffrey the Giraffe who can’t keep Ninja Turtles in stock. K-Mart was sold out too. And they had quite a bit of peg space. More than K-Mart usually allows. I suspect K-Mart’s nice $7.99 pricetag is part of the reason, but even their roleplay weapons and lame Power Sound FX figures were sold out. Turtle Power!
Walmart had a smaller TMNT section (though I don’t know why) but the Fearsome Foursome were selling pretty good there too. All of the basic figures were gone, with only the FX figures left. Even those were down to one or two per peg. It’s a good time for Turtles toys. Thankfully I’m not still hunting these guys down, because I’d be SOL.
Elsewhere at K-Mart, I noticed some newer Avengers figures. I think I’ve seen Hawkeye once before, but this was the first time I saw the new Nick Fury figure. He’s MUCH darker black in skin tone than the one that came out in the previous Iron Man pack. Not sure what that’s about, but they’ve made him Ron Killings black. To be fair, I haven’t followed these figures much so this may not be news to most of you.
K-Mart also had stacks of Randy Orton figures…
Because Mattel didn’t seem to get the memo… NOBODY LIKES RANDY ORTON!
The same could pretty much be said for John Cena too. Freaking K-Mart got a whole wave of Elite Cena figures. Yes, an entire wave of nothing but Cena. Add that with the regular Elite case assortments that have 4-8 Cenas already in them and you have a store that’s chocked full of John Cena and Randy Orton. With a few other figures peppered throughout.
I’m not necessarily saying Mattel should ship a bunch of Jinder Mahal figures… Wait, who the hell is Jinder Mahal? Hey look, it’s more Randy Ortons!
This makes me want a Hersey’s bar.
Yes, one as big as your freaking head! Because that’s what you want to give a kid for Christmas… Type II Diabetes! Seriously, that chocolate bar weighs as much as a small child. I realize it’s not a toy, but K-Mart has all their X-Mas (WAR ON CHRISTMAS! AHHH!) candy in the toy aisles. I’m just reporting what’s there. I mean, if your kid eats this, his fingers are going to be so fat he won’t be able to play with real toys anyway. Instead of a stocking, you’ll have to get him those blood circulation socks that old people wear.
On the plus side, K-Mart had some neat “Just Kidz” off brand toys. These are a good value. Assuming of course you’re getting them for kids who don’t care about name brand stuff.
“Dad I want a Wii-U and some Ninja Turtles for Christmas!”
“Shut up and play with this construction set and eat your 50 pound Hersey bar!”
This remote control crane is pretty awesome. Although the kid demonstrating it kind of seems like a dork.
Also at K-Mart? Vaguely Power Ranger looking robots. These were a staple of Christmas in the 80’s, although they looked less like Rangers then. Nice to see them still around… I guess.
K-Mart also has some of the newer TNA figures and UFC guys. Also some Terry Taylors… Because NOBODY LIKES RED ROOSTER! But a bunch of old school fans convinced Jakks that they did, heh.
I know it seems like I’m focusing on K-Mart a lot, but they had a ton of stock for Black Friday.
Including this Polar Express train set for $119.99!?! That’s crazy. I guess it must be a nice set. It is a Lionel. Didn’t appear to be selling, though. Should have included some Ninja Turtles.
Walmart didn’t really have anything else of interest. But Toys R Us did have some groovy new Adventure Time stuff. Including this Finn hat that I hadn’t seen before. Well, I’ve seen Finn hats before, but not at Toys R Us. They also had the Adventure Time Sword and some Regular Show stuff.
I also really like this Adventure Time Christmas repaint set. $15 seems a bit steep though. Jazwares also has these strange Jake & Finn “Battle Packs” which include 8 mini figures of the guys. It’s a great idea, except several of the mini-figures are duplicates. I don’t understand that at all. Why would you want 3-4 figures with the same sculpt?!
It’s like they didn’t have enough Jake or Finn sculpts to make an 8 pack, but instead of including some Jakes with the Finns and vice versa, they included duplicate Jakes and Finns. It boggles the mind. Then again, Jazwares.
Last but not least… I’m hardly a Star Wars guy, but these retro looking Millennium Falcons are pretty awesome. The packaging is one of the best parts here. This brings back fond memories. Although I wasn’t too much into Star Wars, the Falcon was a premium ride that saw thousands of adventures when I was young. Usually piloted by Sgt. Slaughter or King Lionheart from the TMNT! Yeah, we just came full circle baby! CIRCLE OF LIFE!
And on a sad note…
Not a SINGLE stinkin’ toy in the Toys For Tots box. NOT ONE! Not even a cheap one. Time for us to rectify that peoples. Take part in our Infinite Toys For Tots Drive and send in a photo of you donating a toy and I’ll match you with a donation of my own. Let’s help give some less fortunate kids a good Christmas this year.