Thinkway Toy Story Collection - MR. POTATO HEAD
This spud's for you...
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Mr. Potato Head was already a superstar prior to Disney/Pixar's film release of Toy Story in 1995, but even after a career spanning nearly sixty years, this guy seems more popular now than ever. Thinkway Toys, the geniuses behind the Buzz Lightyear toys, are at it again to help complete Andy's room of toys with their TOY STORY COLLECTION. The timing couldn't be more appropriate as the first two Toy Story movies have just been released on Blu-ray and the third film arrives in theaters this June.
Though Mr. Potato Head is a product of Hasbro/Playskool, it was licensed to Thinkway to develop a more film-accurate toy that talks and interacts with you. I'm an enormous fan of the Toy Story Collection so there was no hesitation when I found this at my local Toys"R"Us. Price-wise... this was pretty steep at $50, which happens to be the same price as the Buzz Lightyear figure. We'll take a close look at Mr. Potato Head and see if the high price can be justified.
If you're new to this collection, Mr. Potato Head is the 7th toy released. Already in stores now are Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Space Aliens, Bucket of Soldiers, RC and Rex.
PACKAGING: The "Toy Story Collection" label on the box is a good indicator that this isn't your usual Mr. Potato Head. And though Playskool is clearly labeled throughout, this is certainly a Thinkway Toy. The box also clearly tells you on all sides what contents are inside and what features the toy has.
Mr. Potato Head is presented in a large box with all of his contents clearly visible and it all looks great. A try me button is available for a demonstration so you can get your kicks without removing him.
While this toy looks great in the package, it IS a toy afterall and made to be played with. Now, getting Mr. Potato Head out of the box was one of the most troublesome experiences I've come across, but especially so for one geared for ages 3 and up. Not only is the spud tied down with plenty of twist ties, the other ends are concealed under cardboard and tape. And remember that "try me" button? It's actually connected to a long wire that is plugged into the back of Mr. Potato Head. To free the wire, you'll have to cut up the inner packaging pretty good since it's weaved in and out of the cardboard pretty good. There really isn't an easy way to remove him.
After he's freed, you still have the demo wire connected to Mr. Potato Head. You'd think that you could save a lot of trouble and unplug it first thing but that isn't the case. To remove it, you'll need a screwdriver. That’s right... a screwdriver. This isn't a simple case of open the box and you're ready to play. You'll have to unscrew is back hatch to unplug the demo wire. Not exactly a great start.
SCULPT & PARTS: If there is one thing that has been great about Thinkway's Toy Story Collection, it's their accurate design. Every toy looks like it stepped right out of the movie. Unfortunately with Mr. Potato Head there are already obvious inaccuracies that we will get to in a bit. But first, since this is a Mr. Potato Head with body parts as accessories, let's look at what they are. Mr. Potato Head includes:
-Regular Eyes and Mouth
-Angry Eyes and Mouth
No, the booties are permanently fixed onto Potato Head which is really disappointing. Another disappointing fact is that not all parts fit in all areas. Want to create the perfect Picasso face? Sorry, but you won’t be able to do so. Nor are the mouths able to be attached upside down to create more varied expressions. You get two mouths and you get two looks.
A major bummer about the toy is that the film version of Potato Head has two separate eye parts. The toy has both eyes connected as one piece. What's really odd is that there are two separate eye sockets, as if they were originally set out to separate the eyes. The Toy Story Mr. Potato Head is recommended for "Ages 3 and Up," however, so the eye piece may be designed as a safety issue, being large enough so it won't be swallowed.
I mentioned above that Mr. Potato Head's boots are permanently attached but that he also has legs. The original toy never had legs; the potato body always sat on massive pairs of feet. Here, he is given legs but they don't serve any purpose at all.
The hands attach to the sides easy enough but another opportunity is missed as these hands are not flexible. They are permanently held out for whatever reason.
The batteries are located on his rear end where you'd normally store his extra accessories. There's no extra space on this toy and it's also too bad that the flap is screwed in and doesn’t work as it should either.
ARTICULATION & ACTION FEATURES: Sadly, Mr. Potato Head has no articulation. You can remove his arms and place them in any direction you like, but there's no twisting and turning as you would expect. And even with the blessing of legs, he really can't move them around.
Mr. Potato Head has a couple of action gimmicks for improved play value. First is the talking feature voiced by comic genius, Don Rickles. He provides new voice recordings for this toy and the audio sounds great. Just tap his hat to hear him speak.
While he speaks, every body part is moving and shaking around. With his legs permanently attached, Mr. Potato Head wiggles around every time he says anything. I still don't see the need for legs as this could have been achieved easily without them.
One of the more fun gimmicks is the "poppable parts" action feature. Loud noises (or a push of a button on the back of Potato Head) will "scare" Mr. Potato Head and all of his parts, with the exception of the mouth, will fall right off.
VALUE: For a Potato Head that doesn't have 100% interchangeable parts, permanent boots, no articulation, inaccurate eyes, $50 is a lot of money, especially if you can get a fully articulated Buzz Lightyear for the same price range. If you can find it for less, that'd be the way to go.
OVERALL: Price aside, I'm pretty disappointed in Mr. Potato Head. After seeing what they could do with Buzz Lightyear, I was hoping for the ultimate Toy Story Mr. Potato Head. These should be toys first and foremost, not dialogue spouting electronic doodads that sit on the shelf.
This toy is made for ages 3 and up, it says so on the box, but with all its mechanical inner workings and lack of interchangeable parts, this really isn't going to be fun for them. I think kids and adults alike would appreciate a version of Mr. Potato Head like one in the film that has more practical features than electronic ones. I know I would.
Despite all my ramblings, this IS a fine toy. The audio is superb, the pop-off parts feature is great, and though his eyes are stuck together and his arms don't have any flexibility, I do like this toy. It's a Mr. Potato Head after all so it's hard not to love. If I paid closer to $30, I think that would be the right price.
Be sure to check out the image gallery below for more images of Mr. Potato Head!
Review and Photos by David Yeh
Re: Thinkway Toy Story Collection - MR. POTATO HEAD
this is great ! and I see these
İs this toy real ?
I look at disneystore,ebay,amazon,thinkwaytoys.com but ı don't see it.
Re: Thinkway Toy Story Collection - MR. POTATO HEAD
Hi, my daughter has Mr Potato Head and she loves him. But we have a problem because she can't find one of the ears. If anybody knows where could I buy it I really appreciate it.
It's a beautiful toy and I would like to keep it as a memory of my kids when they were toddlers.