Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Toy Topic: Is Mattel Out To Get Me?

In my "Things That Toy Buyers Do That I Hate" article, I briefly touched on "Getting Matteled" in my point about convention exclusives

I don't know why it is, but I don't like Mattel as a toy company. My gut reaction is one of negativity. I don't know, maybe it's all the bad things that I've heard about there online store and breakage of toys.

Granted, Hasbro has it's share of problems when it comes to paint applications and stiff joints. But I've also heard that Mattel has problems with it's distribution.

It's not that I've never purchased a product form them. I was collecting the DC Super Hero figures way back, and the last one I got was Clayface. I also picked up The Flash, Power Girl and Blue Devil a few months ago.

One of the reasons I did this was because of their low price. I know that when Marvel Legends returns next year we'll be seeing the figures go for about the same price as the DC Universe figures do (unless you get them from Hasbro Toy Shop), but I find it ludicrous that 6 inch figures cost nearly 20 dollars or more (I'm looking at you Ghostbusters!)

So price is one issue I have with them. I guess the other would be execution?

The DC Infinite Heroes come to mind. I can readily pick up some of these figures for cheap. But here price is not the issue. It's the way the toys were built.

I'm a fan of articulation. I think the most articulated figure in my collection is the 15 inch Spider-man from Spider-Man 2 with 67 points of articulation. You don't need the articulation, but just having it is good enough.

These Infinite Heroes lacked articulation. Sometimes it was knees, sometimes it was elbows and sometimes it was hip joints. I guess the world agreed with me and these guys started showing up on clearance.

I don't get it! Mattel is the number one toy maker in the states. Their product comes out to be inferior to Hasbro's. You can accuse me of being a hasbro fanboy, but I only have an allegiance to great product. And Mattel hasn't delivered.

Another issue is their online exclusives. Which it's not their fault that the company who runs their store sucks. If you have an employee who isn't doing their job right you let him go. For Mattel this is a non issue.

I'm upset at the fact that they have exclusives on their store and how difficult it is to buy them when their web site's on the fritz. Hasbro does this also, but the only problem you get is the item being out of stock.

Maybe it's just me. But Mattel has a bad rep in my eyes. I'm not saying boycott the companies products. I'm just saying that I'm iffy on investing any money into any of their products. Unless the reward is greater than the risk.

There have been Q and A's with the staff about problems and the like. I realize that they can't control the whole process. But I do know that they can make it right. There is a crack in the chain somewhere.

So let me know what you think. Am I right? What has been your experience with Mattel, their products and their website. Is Hasbro or Bandai better? Mcfarlane perhaps?
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