Merch Hunter #10: Mickey Sparrow, Darth Vader Sneakers, and a Nightmare of a Romper Suit

Another week, another introduction mentioning Christmas: after all, this week has seen the official unveiling of Christmas 2011 with the addition of Christmas decorations to the Disney Store’s online catalogue (that’s the actual scientifically proved start of the Christmas period, you see), and I’ll be damned if I let that one fly without a mention.

Anyway, back to the serious business of movie merchandise, and three fairly light-hearted, but no less essential picks, with yet another beyond-awesome creation by Japan’s inimitable Medicom Toy company, some shoes bearing the face of the greatest movie villain of all time (no, sadly not Ballbricker from Porky’s), and baby clothes. Don’t judge me, I’m broody.

For no reason at all, here’s a column dedicated disproportionately to Disney.

1. Jack Sparrow Mickey Mouse Version 2.0

Anyone who’s been around for many of these columns will know that Sideshow Toys rank high in my estimation of the greatest merchandise retailers currently peddling their wares to collectors like myself, and it is for damn good reason. The company, who fall under the “reassuringly expensive” banner, consistently offer mind-bogglingly well-made collectibles (with a particular strong line in busts and figures) from the pick of manufacturers. One of those top-enders is Medicom Toy, who introduced the Kubrick and who sell out more than Bruce Willis, and whose latest super-exclusive figurine brings together two iconic Disney characters of old and new with typically perfected design and a phenomenal commitment to detail. The execution, and faithfulness that has gone into the figure means that there is far more charisma in these five and a half inches of vinyl than Rob Marshall was able to squeeze out of the entire fourth film.

I was absolutely tickled by this mash-up design, and as soon as the Eurozone stops threatening to explode horribly and send us all back to the dark days of the early 1980s, I fully plan to invest the necessary $74.99 required to secure one when the first quarter of 2012 staggers around the bend.

You can pre-order your own “Mickey Sparrow” here, but be warned, it isn’t likely to be available by the time the release date comes around early next year, so be quick about it.

2. Star Wars Stan Smith 80s Mid Shoes

You can’t move for Star Wars merch round my house, but that’s not particularly surprising considering the frequency with which new products come on to the market, and with the Blu-rays still driving renewed interest in George Lucas’ incest-y space opera, I thought I’d jump back on the bandwagon and re-introduce these incredible sneakers from Adidas. It’s at this point I should mention I also collect sneakers (or trainers are we Brits equally strangely call them), so anything that crosses over like Nike’s brilliant Back to the Future high-tops, or these Star Wars sneaks is a must for me.

This design, which feature Old Plastic Head’s image on the side may not be the most subtle of the sports/fashion retailer’s line of Star Wars licensed shoes – which also features a design based on the AT-AT, as well as some less obvious homages – but they are undoubtedly the most bold, and if you’re going to have Star Wars shoes, I figure why not go the whole hog?!

You can pick up a set here for a tidy $130.

3. Jack Skellington Bodysuit

Come on, how can you just not absolutely melt? Just imagine the reactions…okay, so maybe I’ve got caught up in the moment a bit – after all my biological clock is ticking, and it’s getting to that fateful stage of this collector’s life when he has to start thinking about cooking himself up a sprog to dress in tiny superhero costumes all year round (not really an option for grown men in acceptable society unfortunately). But all of that aside, baby clothes are BIG business for companies like Disney, thanks to the Mouse House’s ability to balance appeal for both kids and their parents.

Both designs are great, particularly the “Mommy’s Little Nightmare” white variant, and no matter what I say here, they will no doubt already be being bought up in the thousands by a particular type of young(ish) couple for whom Tim Burton’s finest film work represented as important a cinematic moment as it did to me. And rightly so.

Go on, dress your babies in a manner that reflects your addictions, they’ll thank you for it later. You can pick up a pair here.

T-Shirt of the Week

As I’ve said before, British company LastExitToNowhere make superior film-inspired tees, that ignore the usual blatancy of some competitors in favor of an artful, knowing subtlety that suggests far more about their clients’ dedication to film than a thousand tacky slogans could, and their latest design is cooler than a Groundhog in a snow storm.

Don’t wait til tomorrow to buy one (for £18). There might not be one.

Crack open your piggy bank and blow all that change on everything we’ve ever featured on Merch Hunter. Ever.

Born to the mean streets of Newcastle, England the same year that BMX Bandits was cruelly over-looked for the Best Film Oscar, Simon Gallagher's obsessive love of all things cinema blossomed during that one summer in which he watched Clueless every day for six weeks. This is not a joke. Eventually able to wean himself off that particular dirty habit, and encouraged by the revelation that was One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, he then spent many years reviewing films on the underground scene, throwing away thousands of pounds on a Masters Degree in English in the process, before landing feet-first at the doors of British movie site ObsessedWithFilm.com, where you can catch his blend of rapier wit and morbid sardony on a daily basis. Simon is also a hopeless collector of film paraphenalia, and counts his complete Star Wars Mr. Potato Heads collection among his friends.

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