Welcome back to Toy Aisle, io9's regular post celebrating the end of the week by looking at all the silly toys that will make us willingly empty our wallets. This week, Lego’s sitcom prowess grows with a trip to Seinfeld, Hasbro reveals its Star Wars PulseCon exclusives, and Pokébutts. Yes, you heard us. Check it out!
Did anyone have “turning popular ‘90s-era sitcoms into toy building sets” on their 2021 bingo cards? Following a lavish recreation of the apartments from Friends, Lego has revealed another miniaturized standing set from NBC’s “Must See TV” Thursday night lineup and the network’s biggest hit, Seinfeld. The 1,326-piece set recreates the title character’s New York apartment (it also includes a tiny stage for Jerry to perform standup) and is packed with Easter eggs and inside jokes from the series, including a Festivus pole and a picture of Larry David on the fridge. Available August 1 for $80, the set also includes five minifigures: Jerry, Elaine, Kramer, George, and Newman, but you’ll have to build a laugh track machine yourself.
SDCC might be round the corner, but Hasbro’s playing the long game with a trio of Star Wars announcements for its own upcoming convention this fall, PulseCon. The toymaker’s already teased Marvel and Transformers exclusives for its online event, but now it’s turned to Star Wars for the latest batch of reveals, spread across the original trilogy (give or take a few post-Endor years) and its range of Star Wars lines. On its lonesome in the 3.75" scaled Vintage Collection, a new Emperor Palpatine release gives the Sith Lord an in-scale throne from Return of the Jedi to skulk about in, and even a replica of the viewport his throne room had aboard the Death Star II as a background. It’ll cost $32.
The Black Series line of 6" figures, meanwhile, gets two releases, one retro, and one ripped right out of modern Star Wars. The first standalone release for $30 is a figure of Clone Wars, Rebels, and Mandalorian co-executive producer Dave Filoni, in character as New Republic X-Wing pilot Trapper Wolf from his cameo appearances in the Disney+ show, complete with a removable pilot helmet and blaster rifle (sadly, no cowboy hat). Meanwhile for retro fans—in this context, “retro” meaning if you grew up with the ‘90s Power of the Force line—a new, $105 “Cantina Showdown” set brings together 6" figures of Ben Kenobi with, for the first time in the scale, infamous Mos Eisley duo Ponda Baba and Doctor Evazan. Based on an old POTF set of the same name, each figure comes with a few accessories, like Ben’s lightsaber and even swappable alien hands for Baba (no word if his arm can come off, intentionally at least, to recreate Baba’s close shave with Ben’s laser sword), but it even comes with a modular section of the Mos Eisley cantina’s bar, which Hasbro teases is compatible with future, similar sets. All three exclusives will be available during PulseCon, at a currently unannounced time this fall.
No matter what they think of the film, you’ll be hard-pressed to find anyone who has something bad to say about Jeff “The Dude” Lebowski, arguably actor Jeff Bridges’ most famous and beloved role. We’ve seen plenty of figures based on the Dude (and other characters from the film) but none have captured the character’s spirit quite like Sideshow Collectibles’ new sixth-scale homage. The tiny patterned sweater alone might make this figure worth the $250 investment when it’s finally available sometime next year (you can pre-order it now), but it also includes nine different swappable hands, a miniature White Russian, a bowling ball with bag, and a rug-themed stand to really tie everything together.
Lego revealed this new model in a very under-the-radar fashion, which is a shame because the 1,677-piece 1950s-era vintage Pickup Truck set is an absolute charmer with some of the loveliest curves we’ve ever seen on a Lego vehicle. Officially available October 1 but available for pre-order now for $130, the truck features doors, a hood, and tailgate that all open, working steering, removable wooden side rails on the bed, and farm-related accessories like produce, a wheelbarrow, and a milk jug. It also comes with a festive wreath that can be attached to the front so you can park this beauty on the fireplace mantle when Christmas rolls around.
The humble green plastic “Army Men” figure is one of the most iconic toys of all time, and hasn’t had much of an update since being first introduced in the 1930s. But what happens when your imaginary war shifts from Earth to space: the final frontier? Then it’s time to say goodbye to the green and upgrade to these Nanoforce two-inch figures based on popular Star Trek figures. Two sets will be available for $25 each come November: one featuring Captain Kirk, the OG Enterprise, and 11 other figures based on the original Star Trek series, and the other featuring Picard and 11 characters from Star Trek: The Next Generation.
The only thing possibly more satisfying than sneaking a nap in at work is burying your face in a Pokémon’s cushioned butt in the process. It sounds like a fantasy, but head on over to the Pokémon Center website and for $40 you can score this Yamper-themed pillow (well, at least half of Yamper) that boasts a “chewy texture and elasticity like marshmallows” which we’re going to assume isn’t an entirely accurate Google translation, but we’re happy to go with it. Focusing primarily on Yamper’s posterior, the pillow also includes a pair of pockets for burying your hands and keeping them warm while you doze.
Few of us would be keen to count up the hours we’ve spent staring at a Nintendo Switch or a TV screen playing Animal Crossing New Horizons over the past year, which might make playing this board game alternative more appealing, or at least less guilt-inducing. It’s the latest Monopoly redux, and when available next month for $25 players won’t be rushing to buy up properties and bankrupt their competitors, but will instead collect bugs, fish, fossil, and fruit; buy decorations; and try to amass the most Nook Miles before the game is over.
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