Review: Toy Fair 2013

In the Mid 1990's, I started to learn that there was a value to collecting Turtle Toys.  I remember that I was at Borders Books as my mom and dad had friends they would meet up with once a month and I would wander around looking for something to do with myself.  I decided to pick up a toy magazine was surprised to find a long list of toys and how much they are worth.  So I flicked through and found Ninja Turtles and realized just how much there is in the collection that I had even at that time.  My curiosity on this got me to start picking up toy magazines and doing so I learned about Toy Fair.  A huge event that is for Professionals only, where toys for the year are displayed.  I wanted to go, I wanted to be part of this.  But I never thought I would or even could be.  I am just a fan.  Though with Cowabunga Corner being a press outlet and how much reviews we do here, I tried to cover Toy Fair 2013 and was able to do just that.  So here is my review of the two days I had at New York City Toy Fair!

My day started off with the company that first got me to realize I could attend a part of Toy Fair, LEGO.  They invited me to their pre show where we were able to get in before Toy Fair started.  I walked around the booth getting to see all their new LEGOs from Star Wars, Super Heroes, and of course Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  While the Turtle sets were all ones I've seen before I still enjoyed getting to over hear other people's reactions and talking to fellow fans.  I went around to check out the details of other sets they had, with some really impressive Star Wars sets on hand.  The most impressive display was their robotic LEGOs.  These things have remotes but you can also program to an app on your cellphone!  They are amazing and the demonstration was super.

After LEGO was done I went out and waited for the floor to open up.  Walking in I stopped at Playmates booth first, a closed up booth where you needed a tour to go in and see the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles items inside.  I said hi, though I knew I would not be inside there till later that day.  So I walked around heading to booths that I planned out a few days ago.  Starting with Wonder Forge where they have two new TMNT board games coming out this year.  From there I hopped over to Sakar where they had a nice display of TMNT Products.

After seeing the awesome display I went down to level 1 and decided to walk the floor.  The first booth I stopped at was NECA.  I asked a lady there about the Shredder toy they were doing.  They NO LONGER have the License for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and can not release him as long as they do not have it.  So this is not something we'll see on the market.  I went from there over to MEZCA and they had the new Thundercats big figures up and their Living Dead Dolls.  I got to talk to the guy behind the Living Dead dolls for a little bit, then went on my way around the corner.  Having hit most of the booths that I wanted to see I did not know if there was much else here for me.  I was just going to float around and enjoy myself.  I had some surprises coming my way.

I walked down the hall and started noticing stuff.  Small things.  One booth went to stop me to talk, they handed me a flyer to try and sell me on Super Mario but when I flipped the flyer over I saw Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  I said "This has my attention more" and asked for their information.  At that point my goal became to find all of the odds and ins of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles that I could find at Toy Fair.  It did not take me long to find Brain Storm the company that does Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle kites.  And it just kept going from there as I found TMNT Tattoos, puzzles, stickers, novelty toys, and even flavored straws!  It was such an amazing trip that I was in shock on how much Turtle stuff I found.  Taking business cards, press releases, flyers and catalogs from all who would work with me.  I will cover each of these booths in their own posts which will connect to reviews of their products as we get the product reviews done.

Of course Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was the main attraction for me.  Though other things caught my eye as I walked around.  I stopped and watched other demos, talked to more people and even found myself looking for booths that did not have anything to do with TMNT.  One of the main booths that found myself searching was the item I saw most around Toy Fair, these balloon animals on leashes.  First I saw a cow, then I saw a dog, then I saw a cat and it kept coming.  People walking around Toy Fair with these balloons following them low to the ground with legs that gave the look as if they were walking.  At first I thought they were cool, but was not thinking of hunting them down till I saw someone walk by with a dog that looked just like my dog Sassy.  when I saw that I knew I had to get it.

These balloons were the hit of the Toy Fair.  The more I went around the more I saw them.  Once I found the booth I was able to get the balloon I wanted, so I named it Sassy and went on my way.  I finished walking the floor.  Tired and feeling like I accomplished much that day I went to the press room to charge my phone and rest.  This is when I learned the press room is just as important to visit as the floor is.  Sitting around in the press room I got to talk with people from many different websites who were covering Toy Fair.  Here are a few shout outs to some of the awesome folks who took the time to talk with me over the past two days.  Please feel free to check out their websites for coverage of Toy Fair as well.

SHOUT OUTS: Toys & Game  Jim Hill Media  Dad Does

After hanging out in the press room I went to Playmates Toys.  Once I got in I waited till I was happy with all the video and photos I took of the Turtle toys.  The booth was cool.  The crew was informative.  The toys were awesome.  The excitement for the toy line of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2013 is growing in me.  I will share a full review of this trip into the booth.  Plus my first thoughts on each of the new TMNT lines coming for 2013.

That was the end of day one.  I checked into my hotel and ran over to "Roy's Pizza" from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II for dinner.  Sadly I learned that the owner passed away in September 2012.  It was a surprise to his family.  His sons are keeping the business going.  I just met Mario for my first time in March 2012 and he was a great guy.  Very friendly and really and honor to have talked with him.  My heart goes out to everyone who knew him.  I still highly recommend The Famous Roios on 6th Ave and 11th St. The following morning I made my way back to Toy Fair and started to make my way through the booths.  Starting with a goal, Bruder Toys.  We shared information about Bruder in Cowabunga Corner #63  as it is ran by Mark Caso, the actor who wore the Leonardo costume for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II and III.  I got there and saw Mark, he took a few minutes out to say hello and catch up with me.  After talking for a little bit, I went on my way.  Mark did want me to tell all the viewers of Cowabunga Corner that he says "Hi".

Today I was on a mission to find a product I was told about in the press room the night before.  Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles squirt toys.  I searched where I was told it was, but there was no sign of it.  So once again I spent my time going from booth to booth.  Here I found some cool stuff including new My Little Pony Plushies.  Though the booth I think was really neat was a static electric booth with different gimmicks.  The first toy they showed me I didn't have much to say about, but the second toy was more of a tool than a toy.  I will give this booth a nice shout out as well share some video of the demo that holds my attention in it's own write up.

I did find a few more TMNT items including new color forms and more stickers and tattoos.  I was kind of surprised to see two companies got the rights for stickers and tattoos.  Though after walking most of the floor I saw a booth with huge TMNT images on it from three allies away.  I cut over to it and saw very cool products for the Spring of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  While talking to them I learned that this is the booth I was looking for.  I got my photos and even some products to review!  I can not wait to share more about "Little Kids" with everyone.  This booth awesome and the products that they got are just a blast for kids of all ages.

There was one last booth I wanted to go too.  Problem was this booth was hard to find.  I searched each show room floor for them with no luck.  Finally I went to information, they told me it was downstairs... but it was not.  I went down there and the information sent me back up to the main booth.  One of the ladies in formation was so fed up with the fact that no one could find this booth that she joined me in the great hunt to find where the booth was.  It was down stairs, it was on the 4th floor you had to take an elevator to go up too.  I got up there and sadly even though their products have been seen in stores this booth did not want any photos taken of their set up.  It was nice to finally find them, but a little disappointing that the meet up with them was shorter than any of the other booth meetings I had.  The information lady was surprised I was done so fast and we went down stairs.

At this point I found all the booths that I wanted to go too.  Talked to more people than I even planned.  And got a ton of product and information for reviews.  My time here at Toy Fair was coming to an end.  I said goodbye to Mark over at Bruder Toys, then went down to the Press room and stayed there till it was time to leave.  Talking with all the awesome people who were hanging out down there.  The press room was one of my favorite rooms, because everyone was so down to earth and friendly there.

Toy Fair was a blast and I promise a lot of photos and videos are soon to come from this awesome 2013 show!  I only hope to return to Toy Fair in 2014!

Did you go to Toy Fair?  If so what did you cover there?  Have a Favorite booth?  Please share your reviews, questions and comments below.

Entertainment Earth



Michelle, when will you talk about the new TMNT figures from toy fair? When I saw this post (and the picture of TMNT at the top) I got so excited to read about all of the new TMNT toys XD. I'm not saying I didn't enjoy this review, it was great, really, it's just I really can't wait to read about your thoughts on the new TMNT toys. I'm glad you had fun at toy fair! I wish I could go some day, but I don't believe that they allow just normal fans in. Oh well. Also, will there be pictures of the new TMNT toys? I want to see them so bad!

Michele Ivey's picture

As I mentioned in this review I will be doing posts about the booths and the products. I'm sorry that I have not had the chance yet, but when I do my reviews I like to be in the moment and really paying attention to the products so that I can do the best work on that review for our readers. This event review was written while I was riding on a bus half asleep. I do promise there will be photos, videos, and a ton of reviews that will be flowing through here over the next few months. Not just Playmates Toys but all these other booths that I visited who had TMNT stuff as well. Which will lead up to a short follow up story of what happened after I left Toy Fair.

Just stick with us, as I've been doing a lot of this work myself. And it is time consuming. I love getting things to everyone. Just want to make sure it's worth the read and view.

I hope I didn't sound rude in my comment, I understand that these reviews are time consuming, I was just trying to say that the picture on top of the review made me think it would be about the TMNT toys. There's no rush, but I can't wait to see them. I hope you had fun at Toy Fair!

Michele Ivey's picture

When I do product review I mention it in the topic usually. Though even in my opening statement that goes on the front page it said reviews of the two days. The booth reviews will be coming first, which is going to be more about the layout of the booth the people and how things went visiting the booth. Information behind the company. Those will not be product reviews yet. Just Introducing the makers as I feel they all deserve a nod of their own. Hopefully our first booth review will be tomorrow. It will not be Playmates because that review will include some video of the inside of the booth, so hopefully I will have it ready sometimes next week to be posted. I have a ton of stuff I want to put together from this Toy Fair.

I do promise that I will be doing product review where it will be cut into groups "review of the playsets" "reviews of the rides" and the type of review will be named in the topic. Though I do think each of these reviews are worth sharing.

Interesting start for the reviews, but I have one teeeny nitpick. It's Mezco, not Mezca that do the Living Dead Dolls, etc. ;-)

Michele Ivey's picture

Heh thanks, wrote this review tired on a bus so not surprised for wrong spellings ;)