Podzilla 1985

Monday, July 22, 2013

Comic Con Goes Gold!

About a year ago I discovered the Infinity Toys line of collector Jem and the Hologram dolls. Their first release was Hollywood Jem at San Diego International Comic Con and she was a huge success! The first series included the Classic Jem, her everyday persona Jerrica Benton, her boy friend and music tech Rio Pacheco, and the super computer Synergy.

These dolls sold out very quickly, though you can some times still find a few through various online doll stores. Other wise you are looking at serioiusly inflated prices on eBay and Amazon from private sellers.

This year Hasbro took the wheel and exclusively sold the Comic Con release for 2013. Jem was originally created by Hasbro so this only makes sense, though the dolls are still produced by Infinity Toys. The Glitter N' Gold dolls have been reborn, and I have to say look fabulous. Too bad I'll never get my hands on them. Back in the 80's it was kind of a big deal to get a gold record, so it was only natural that our favorite animated rock start would hit that mile stone.

I have the original Glitter N' Gold Jem still. She was my replacement Jem doll when my first one got broke at the baby sitter's house. It was worth the upgrade. What little girl wouldn't want their Jem doll to be decked out in gold metallic fabrics and have gold tinsel high lights? Even the cassette tape she came with had a gold foil label. I still have that too, though nothing to play ti on any more sadly. I never got the matching Glitter N' Gold Rio though to go with her. I wasn't that spoiled of a child. No those days of full collections as a kid were reserved for Rainbow Brite, but that's another story.

The new Infinity take on the Glitter N' Gold dolls are amazing. They've kept with the gorgeous new look they've given to the Jem line and have still kept all the classic nostalgia we crave. The costumes are dead on right down to the second outfit in white for Jerrica, minus the reversible aspect the 80's toy had. Even the stitching on the top is the same pattern as the classic. I also love that the Rio doll comes with the Glitter N' Gold album, complete with accurate cover art from the show. On a side note I remember the gold album episode also bringing to light bar code technology which was still new at the time. Crazy how far things have come right?  It those little details that I completely eat up and die for. Oh if only I had the extra money to spend on these treasures.

Aside from the new Comic Con releases, there were two other series releases in the past year. The first series came out in early September of 2012. Series two had a launch of late November that same year and brought us the Holograms. 

Kimber Benton: Jerrica's younger sister who plays keyboard and writes most of the band's music. She's the youngest in the group but easily also the most passionate. She's also the most fickled when it comes to love. The other girls stick pretty much to one guy through the whole series, but Kimber shops around a bit more. I never cared for her 80's doll, but I love the new version. her hair is just awesome!

Aja Leith: The original foster girl of Starlight House, she grew up with Jerrica and Kimber as if they were sisters. She also plays guitar for the group and if usually the one fixing the car and other technically problems that pop up around the foster home. She's not afraid to get a little dirty while getting the job done. Aja was always my favorite hologram. I think I just liked the idea of having blue hair. Must have been all the early anime influence in my life. Though she's of Chinese descent not Japanese.

Shana Elmsford: Starlight House's second foster girl she also grew up with her band members, though she was a shy girl music helped bring her out of her shell. Shana usually plays the drums in the group but she can play bass guitar as well. She's also a fashion designer and often creates the groups costumes for their shows. Shana's new doll got her hair a lot closer to her look in the show, but I still don't  entirely love it. I guess there's only so much you can do doll wise with what's basically an Afro. I do love that they color pretty much spot on this time around.

Another little fun fact: the last names of the band members come from scientists who were involved in holographic research.

Series three came to us this past May and brought fans the long awaited MISFITS. These are the dolls I actually really regret not getting a chance at. I hated them as  kid, but looking back now they had such a fun punkish style. The jaded side of me also loves their selfish tone of music. They're out for themselves and don't care of the world knows it.

First up with have the "bad girl" group's leader Pizzazz. Or Phyills Gabor, as her birth certificate reads. Pizzazz is a rich spoiled daddy's girl who get's whatever she wants, mainly because her father is always busy and makes up for his lack of time with money. Her goal is to become number one in the music charts and to be the world's biggest start. The world is there to adore her and if you want to do what she says you're more than welcome to tag along, until she get's sick of you.

Roxanne "Roxy" Pelligrini: is the "tough-as-nails" bass guitarist and also back up vocalist. She's a high school drop out from Philadelphia who's out for a free ride from Pizzazz. She was illiterate until one of the Starlight girls convinced her to learn how to read. Roxy is the most head strong of the Misfits, and though she'll back down from Pizzazz she doesn't like not getting her way.

Mary "Stormer" Phillips: is the verbal punching bag of the group. She is walked on by the other girls and rarely speaks up for herself for fear of rejection. Stormer plays keyboard, as well as writes all of the music for the group. Even though she's pretty much the creative force behind the group she get's next to no credit. She's generally a good girl, but has to act bad to fit in with her "friends", though she does seem to truly enjoy the harmless mischief they do. It's the more dangerous stuff she will object to, but still get dragged along. if things had worked out differently Stormer would have fit in fine with the Holograms.

Also released this summer was Broadway Magic Jem. She was an exclusive for W Club members and has already sold out. She came with a stage back drop cut out as well for display. Have I mentioned that I love seeing all these costumes from the show coming to life?

Finally this fall Jem and the Hologram fans and collectors will finally be able to add members of the third band to their collections. The Stingers are up for pre-order with an estimated shipping date some time this September. The Stingers appeared in the final season of Jem but their toys never made it to the sales floor. Pictures of prototypes exist, but were never made. Though I've seen my fair share of good customs out there, these will be the first official Stingers dolls.  would love to get them but there's so many other things that need to be paid for instead.

While the Holograms sing about good will and the Misfits are about selfishness, I guess the Stinger's theme would be greed or excess. They come from a ruff start, playing on the streets of Europe and nearly starving to death until they got a fan following and a big break.
"Riot", Rory Llewelyn is the charismatic leader of the Stingers. He's very aloof and can be highly arrogant but he's a talented musician and the back bone of his group. He was forced to join the army by his overly strict father, but his love of music made him decide to go AWOL and join a band while stationed in Germany.

"Minx", Ingrid Kruger was the synthesizer player in the band that Riot first joined. When he had creative differences with their leader she saw the potential he had and left the group with him to start their own group. Minx, like Riot is also arrogant and self-centered, but she will take advice from Riot and even looks up to him a bit. She's a highly manipulative woman and takes pride in the fact that she can have any man she wants, though she get's board easily and tossing them side like yesterday's trash. Surprisingly Minx is very tech savvy  and often builds her own equipment.

"Rapture" Phoebe Ashe was the final member to join the group. She plays guitar and along with Minx sings back up. Rapture is a top notch con-artist and pretty much an expert on the occult which helps on her ticks more often than not. She's highly intelligent an quick to react to almost any situation which makes her a great performer on and off stage. 

These three not only cause trouble for the Holograms, but they through the Misfits into chaos as well, seeing that Pizzazz falls head over heals for Roit, while the Stinger's lead has eyes only for Jem. As evil and terrible as this group is I love them. I figured I would want the Minx doll but after seeing them I really love the Rapture doll. They toned down her Flock of Seagulls hair style and yet she still looks dead on. Their black and yellow costumes make them look like the most complete group, and helps to show off their musical edge.

 All and all the Infinity Jem line is going strong. If their releases follow suite a fifth set should be due out in Nov. again. We've yet to see the final Hologram, Raya and the forth Misfit, Jetta. They're sure to be in this set. I look forward to also seeing rival cousins Vivian "Video" Montgomery and Constance "Clash" Montgomery. I would also love to see Dance and Astra get dolls as well as the evil Eric Raymond and the ever androgynous Rat. If video DJ Lindsey Pierce "Lin-Z" get's a doll I may finally have to find a way to get one of these. I look forward to what Infinity Toys brings us next with this line.
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