REVIEW: Mattel Hot Wheels SDCC 2012 Exclusive CARS 2 Mater the Tow Truck
The Ideal Exclusive: Not Essential, But Fun Nevertheless...
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This is a definite first, toy fans. You’ve seen Hot Wheels with car wash playsets before but have you ever gotten a car in the loo? That’s exactly what Mattel decided to do for its Disney-Pixar CARS 2 San Diego Comic-Con Exclusive featuring everyone’s favorite Mater the Tow Truck. In a scene pulled directly from CARS 2, Mater is accused of having an oil leak and rushes to the restroom to clean up. Only this isn’t a typical restroom. It’s in “Towkyo”, Japan and you know how fun the gadgets and gizmos can be in Japan. Without understanding the language, Mater receives some bidet action like he’s never experienced and a full outer body wash.
This fun movie moment is captured in a collectible Comic-Con outer box blasting with colors and Anime-style CARS characters. Unfortunately the box doesn’t state the exact contents inside so I’m debating whether to keep it or not. It looks great, but on the other hand, you can’t see the toy. Pulling out the Mater exclusive you’ll find it in a plastic case, viewable from three sides (front, top, side). The other sides are restroom stall walls. You’ll need to remove a peg from the bottom to get everything working properly but as soon as you do you can watch Mater get sprayed to your heart’s content.
I don’t think Mattel had the plan to remove Mater from this base so it’s not exactly something you can pop in and remove. It’s definitely doable but not convenient as the outer plastic case is screwed in.
To activate the sights and sounds, press the button on the side and you’ll see the car wash scrub Mater’s sides, and a light up water fountain pushes Mater up. Once this happens you’ll hear Mater cry out in terror as the Japanese style music and dialogue plays. The control panel buttons flikr on and off. Pushing the button on the base for a 2nd time allows you to hear Mater’s gargling sounds. Push it a third time and Mater screams and then says “Hey, that tickles!” as the catchy tune comes to an end. Check it out in the video below.
The Mater car itself is a new mold with a good amount of bubbles surrounding him. It would be a fun variant to have in your loose collection but I didn’t want to deal with taking it apart. You’re more than welcome to try though!
I mentioned that the buttons on the console light up but there’s a main screen with the fun anime-style character. There’s two different modes to see it and it’s done in the old fashioned lenticular method.
Overall, this is exactly what an exclusive should be: not essential to your main collection if you’re a character completest, but fun nonetheless. For $30 I would maybe expect a little more out of it but it sold out during the convention so I suppose that was the right price after all.
Review and Photography by David Yeh
Mater Exclusive Courtesy of Mattel