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Going Bots: Diamond Select’s “Forbidden” Mini-Mates

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Diamond Select Toy’s Dual Pack of “Forbidden Planet” mini-mates features Robby The Robot and a C-57D Crew Member.

Diamond Select Toys gives Classic Science Fiction fans something small to celebrate about in a big way. Recently hitting store shelves and online retailers are the company’s first Forbidden Planet Minimates. The 2-pack features the iconic Robby The Robot and a crew member of the spaceship C-57D. Each is nicely detailed and articulated for your posing pleasure.

“Danger, Danger” Will Shakespeare…
Honored with entry into the United States Library of Congress Film Registry in 2013, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s Forbidden Planet (1956) famously transported the plot of William Shakespeare’s play The Tempest into the far flung future, and onto a further flung planet – Altair IV. The Bard’s principal characters Prospero and his daughter Miranda are mirrored as Dr. Edward Morbius (Walter Pidgeon) and Altaira (Anne Francis).

I will keep my fingers crossed that we see those two characters added to the DST Minimates series and – one can only hope – a set that includes Robby’s awesome all terrain vehicle and the menacing “monster of the ID.”

Collector’s will be happy to know that Diamond Select also has licensed figures of The Iron Giant and Lost In Space’s lovable B9, in Minimate as well as in the 4 inch vinyl Vinimates style.

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DST’s Robby the Robot 4 inch vinyl Vinimate.

All Guts, No Glory…
BTW, much like Kenny Baker would later inhabit Star Wars‘ R2D2, it’s diminutive Bowery Boy and perennial film teenager Frankie Darro hidden inside that 7 foot Robby suit.

Giving Props…
Many of Forbidden Planet’s props found a protracted after-life on the television screen. Props were extensively used in episodes of Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone. The crew’s suits and weapons and the spaceship itself turned up in the series. Even Robby got recycled as a main feature of The Invisible Boy (1957).

SkeletonPete Says…
One of my favorite appropriations of Forbidden Planet graphics is the use of a painted Altair IV landscape backdrop prominently featured on the cover of the rock band Journey’s first, self-titled, album (Columbia Records PC 33388). The front cover is a pastiche of band members jumping “weightlessly” above, or standing on, the painting while the backcover reveals the enormous size of the canvas as the group rolls it up.

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Pre-Steve Perry Journey cavort on the Forbidden Planet

Stranger still, an image of the C-57D descending onto Altair IV graces the cover of Westminster Records, Soundproof! The Sound of Tomorrow Today (WP-6014). This LP turns out to be anything but futuristic. It’s a Ferrante and Teicher album in disguise.

forbidden planet, ferrante and teicher

This Ferrante and Teicher album got disguised as a space age trip to the future.

Electrical Language…
Speaking of albums, Louis and Bebe Baron’s electronic score, from the pre-synthesizer 50’s, still holds up as a pretty “far-out” experience. It is worth a listen for any devotee of experimental electronic music or musique concrete, and me-thinks Whovians will especially appreciate it.

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Louis and Bebe Baron’s original soundtrack

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