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Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Introducing the brand new Matchbox Shark Week Series...


This appears to be becoming the norm...

The last few years, Hot Wheels has had a lot of success with monthly special assortments.  Pick a theme, create 6 to 8 cars for the assortment, and release it usually at one retailer.  Walmart seems to be the main retailer, but we have seen others at Target, Kmart, Kroger, and other smaller chains.

Sometimes the theme is a particular carmaker like BMW or Porsche, other times a particular car like Mustang or Corvette.  In between those VERY collector-friendly assortments come entertainment themes like Captain America, Star Wars, and Tom & Jerry, or general deco themes like camouflage or red, white, and blue.

Hot Wheels appears to be having a lot of success with these, and I don't think they are going anywhere.  They cost the same as a basic model, and are usually mixed in with basic assortments.

Well it looks like Matchbox is joining the fray.  Right now the Walmart-exclusive Jeep Series is in store, and the Land Rover Assortment is coming soon.  And there are more to come.

Matchbox has allowed Lamley to showcase another upcoming assortment.  It isn't a carmaker like Jeep or Land Rover, but instead a tie-in with the ever popular Shark Week on the Discovery Channel. There are more assortments like this planned, where there will be a mix of licensed and unlicensed castings, all with deco centered around a similar theme.  And yes, these will be in addition to the basic models.

So let's talk Shark Week.  Matchbox will release 8 models, and it is a mix of licensed and unlicensed. Some are ocean-oriented castings, others just cool cars sporting a Shark Week livery.

So let's start with the unlicensed.

Two boats, a submarine, and a beach buggy.  All ocean-ish.











Can't say which one I am most keen on, so why not move on to the licensed models.  A nice assortment, with the Chevy Van, Corvette ZR1, Checker Can, and VW Thing:










Of these, the cab is the most interesting to me, followed by the van.  At least the models are licensed, which makes this assortment that much more interesting.

Will I collect these?  Maybe a couple, only because I am a completist of the casting.  But I don't mind a set like this being released.

My guess is these models will frustrate a few of you.  You might think it is a return to the goofy colors and liveries of the last few years, after such a promising move to realism by the brand the last few months.  I think the opposite.

Having special assortments like these let's Matchbox focus even more on realism in the basic range.  These assortments are an additional release next to basic and possible premium ranges like Best of World.  These allow Matchbox to create very kid-oriented models, while still pushing the true essence of Matchbox in basics.  I think it means we can be more confident that there will be more cool models to collect on the standard pegs.  I guess we will see as 2017 is announced next month.

Plus, we will hopefully get more collector-oriented assortments like Jeep and Land Rover, which is always welcome.  Porsche?  Police?  Wagons?  Mercedes?  Who knows?

This could be a very interesting expansion for Matchbox...







13 comments:

  1. What a fantastic series. I'm all in on Matchbox doing this. Shark Week is such a recognizable program that will get kids and collector's running to the store to collect them all!! Interesting that 2 of the same castings being released at the same time. The newest boat on the clear stand would have been a good alternative, but I'm thinking this model is new and not ready for release as of yet.... Good job Matchbox at obtaining the Discovery Channel license!!! Thanks for previewing John.

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  2. Of the licensed models, only the Corvette seems out of place. The Van isn't over done, Checker looks like an advertisement you may actually see on real taxis, and the Thing just looks right.

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  3. Im all for this! Sharks are awesome, Tampos look great and interesting, licensed castings.

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  4. Only sold in the states........ it piss's me of.

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  5. Only sold in the states........ it piss's me of.

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  7. Similar to the Jurassic World series last year where current castings were repainted in new designs. This has been going on for years with the 5-packs, and even the old Premier-type series related to TV shows like the Osbournes. If it makes money for Matchbox, great.

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  8. These kinds of assortments are usually yet another launch close to simple and also achievable quality amounts just like Finest regarding Planet. These kinds of enable Matchbox to generate extremely kid-oriented designs, although nonetheless driving the actual heart and soul regarding Matchbox inside essentials. I do believe it indicates we could be self-confident in which you will have a lot more great designs to get around the common pegs.
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  9. This would be better suited for HW, with all their weird shark cars, and the Beatles series should've been done by Matchbox. Matchbox's wide selection of British cars would provide for a better assortment.

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  10. Don't mind the idea, but the casting selection is lackluster in my opinion. I get that they have to balance licensed vs unlicensed but I think the reception due to lack of good castings will be lackluster.

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  11. Are there 8 or 10 models? I found a Tacoma lifeguard and International scout in the first 5 units. Will there be 2 releases of 5 units?

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    1. That's my question, too. The Checker Cab, the Chevy Van, and the VW Thing are nowhere to be found. Sucks, since these were the models I was looking forward to. Are they still going to be coming out or are we not going to see those models?

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  12. I've only seen them so far at Toys R Us. When and what retailers are going to be carrying them?

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