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Winter is Here! And So Are the Holidays: Great Gifts for the “Game of Thrones” Fan

Gorgeous Game of Thrones Busts of Tyrion Lannister, Jon Snow, and Daenerys Targaryen from Dark Horse – due out in 2018.

“When the snows fall and the white wind blows, the lone wolf dies but the pack survives.” – Sansa Stark (George R.R. Martin’s “Game of Thrones”)

Take Our Money, Please!
We’ve followed our heroes Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage), Jon Snow (Kit Harrington), and Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) on a long and arduous journey from underdogs in Season 1, to leaders, and now, allies in Season 7. They’ve certainly come a long way. And as they reach the end of the road, we’re curious (and terrified) more than ever to see how their journeys will end. Though Season 8 is still far away (not due to drop until Spring of 2019), GoT fans are chomping at the bit for any and all manner of Game of Thrones news and/or merchandise. Geeks, you gotta love us. We’re soooo easy to please. It’s true. It shouldn’t be hard at all to find the perfect holiday gift for your Game of Thrones-obsessed loved ones. But if you’re stuck, we may have a few suggestions.

Dark Horse has been steadily adding to their Game of Thrones line over the years. These beautifully crafted collectible statues will melt the heart of even the steeliest and coldest Game of Thrones devotee. Whether they’re House Stark, Lannister, or Targaryen, here’s a look at some goodies that are sure to please any die-hard GoT fan.

Prince Oberyn, also known as the Red Viper of Dorne – Available Now From Dark Horse.

I Prefer to Live in Denial…
As I gaze upon these figures, I like to imagine an alternate reality where Oberyn Martell (Pedro Pascal – Narcos, Kingsman: The Golden Circle) still lives. I am still traumatized by his death scene. (Look away, Andy! Look away! Not his beautiful face! I hate you, Mountain!!! Can’t wait for the Clegane Bowl when your brother smashes you to a bloody pulp, you monster! Whew… I needed to get that out of my system, but I digress.) Well, now you can gaze at Oberyn’s beautiful face in its perfection for all eternity. Sigh.

The Three-Eyed Raven Sees All – Available Now From Dark Horse.

He Knows it All… And Says So Little… But We Love Him Anyway…
I thought it’d be hard to beat Dany (Emilia Clarke) riding to her nephew’s rescue (no longer a spoiler, people, except for Jon, who still knows nothing by the end of episode 7, but I can imagine he doesn’t care — cue 70s porn music — you know what I’m sayin’…). Well, Jon, we’ve got news for you! Can’t wait to see his face drop when he reaches Winterfell to receive the news from Sam (John Bradley West) and Bran (Isaac Hempstead Wright) — the Westerosi answer to the internet. Points to them for dropping some major knowledge — though our favorite little exposition potato and resident Three-Eyed Raven does like to wait until the 11th hour, doesn’t he? I’m pretty sure it’ll be worth rewinding a few times when Jon and Dany learn the truth about their familial blood ties. This beautiful Three-Eyed Raven Snow Globe will be a welcome sight on any mantle or display shelf, even if Bran’s predictions do come a little late in the day.

Fan-favorite Tormund – from Dark Horse – due out in 2018.

He Did it All for the Glory of Love…
Who doesn’t love Tormund (portrayed by Kristofer Hivju)? Loyal, brave Tormund. He’s truly grown on me.  Seasons 6 and 7 we saw the softer side of Tormund. He wears his heart on his furry sleeve. The Wildling leader has consistently supported and followed Jon Snow into battle against the White Walkers and the Night King and has managed to earn a place in our hearts. Let’s hope that Tormund survives long enough to win the heart of our favorite Lady Knight and “make babies” with Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie – Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi). Forget Jaime Lannister, Brienne. Tormund is a man who will fight for your honor. He’ll be the hero that you’ve been dreaming of… (Too much Peter Cetera maybe?) You know what I mean! Give the Ginger a break, girl!

The Night King – Available Now From Dark Horse.

Jeepers! Creepers! Keep Those Icy Blue Peepers Away From Me!
Speaking of the Night King, I’ve seen a lot of villains in my time, and this dude has got to be one of the scariest. He genuinely terrifies me and I’m made of pretty stern stuff. He almost makes Darth Vader look cuddly. Who the hell IS this guy really? Lots of theories, some hitting uncomfortably close to home. Some say he may be a Stark himself (shudders). That would just be a classic George R.R. Martin stab-you-in-the-heart reveal. Let’s pray our heroes come up with something to defeat this fearsome dragon-killer and his army of undead next season, or… as Tyrion likes to say, “we’re all screwed”. If you don’t mind his gaze (I swear his eyes are following me), this detailed Night King figure is a must-have piece for your Game of Thrones collection.

For more of these gorgeous collectibles from Dark Horse, check out our gallery below.

“If we don’t put aside our enmities and band together, we will die. And then it doesn’t matter whose skeleton sits on the Iron Throne.” – Ser Davos Seaworth (Game of Thrones)

 

Relive the Excitement… Every Heart-Stopping Minute of It!

Now, if you want to relive every butt-clenching moment of Season 7 (I was pretty much clenched for the entire week between episodes 6 and 7), why not pick up the just-released Game of Thrones Blu-Ray Box set? This 3-disc set comes with bonus features including featurettes on set and art direction, audio commentaries and interviews with the cast and crew, and behind the scenes videos. The interior box is graced by the faces of Tyrion, Jon, Cersei, and Dany, cast in a frozen blue with icy blue irises (because that’s not creepy at all).

The set also contains the Blu-Ray Conquest & Rebellion — featuring 7 new animated pieces delving into the history and mythology of important season 7 locations and storylines including The Dragonpit, Highgarden, Prophecies of the Known World, the Rains of Castamere and more, all narrated by cast members including Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister), Aidan Gillen (Littlefinger/Lord Petyr Baelish), Iain Glen (Ser Jorah Mormont) and more.

Andy Says…
While we may be an obsessed and passionate lot, Game of Thrones fans are easy to spot, and therefore, easy to buy gifts for (not that I’m trolling for myself, mind you, just sharing…). If you find yourself stuck, come back and take another look. We’ll be here, bringing you the latest on GoT memorabilia and collectibles, because, quite frankly, we enjoy it too.

Just in case you need any reminders of how epic it was, here are two trailers for Season 7 of Game of Thrones.

 

As we impatiently and feverishly await the return of our favorite heroes and villains in Season 8here’s a look at some GoT related content from the blu-ray release to tide you over until the series returns. This prequel video, Conquest & Rebellion: An Animated History of the Seven Kingdoms – Chapter One / Valyria’s Last Scion: House Targaryen, is narrated beautifully by none other than Harry Lloyd (Viserys Targaryen).

 

Rare Earth: Safari Ltd. Collectibles 2013

The 3 Headed Hound of Hell Cerebus guards Sarfari Ltd's Mythical Realms

The 3 Headed Hound of Hell Cerebus guards Sarfari Ltd’s Mythical Realms

Birds, Bees, Flowers and the Trees…
Earth Day seemed the perfect time to plant a feature about the wonderful wares of Safari Ltd. since their replicas represent the breadth of Mother Nature’s handiwork from petrified prehistory to current woodland and oceanic fauna. The pruning (umm…editing) of this article took a bit longer than expected, so I’m a couple of days late but still in the spirit.

Miniaturized to Actual-Sized…
It’s always a thrill to enter Safari Ltd’s booth at the annual New York Toy Fair. This year what drew attention to the company’s presentation was a life-sized replica an allosaurus skull, an outsized change up from the dino dioramas that usually greet you. Fear not also on display were the new Dino Babies series. These little guys will surely elicit a smile in return to their own happy go lucky demeanor.

A Few of Safari Ltd's Dino Babies

A Few of Safari Ltd’s Dino Babies

Going Toobular, Your Way…
The recent addition of a fill your own Toob option is a great way to get all the figures you really want. The low to the ground kiosk makes for a fun hands-on experience for youngsters and creaky jointed but adventurous adults like myself. I would seek out stores that offer this option to get your collection started.

Hand Pick the Contents of Your Own Designer Toob.

Hand Pick the Contents of Your Own Designer Toob.

Fact and Fiction…
Safari Ltd isn’t all hard science. They’ve also set their sites on the fantastical world of myth and fairy tale over the last few years. New Mythical Realms figures include a winged ebony stallion called Areion, the three headed gate keeper of hell Cerebus, as well as Hercules in hunting gear.

If you’re feeling your inner Deanerys and want a few weird wyrms to mother, the super popular Dragons line continues to expand with the Golden Dragon and shiny black, red-eyed, Twilight Dragon. There’s also the Thunder Dragon with intrepid rider “Drake” perched upon his neck. The Snow Dragon gets a glow-in-the-dark treatment.

Toob’ed Mini Dragons will be available in a few days and include the Forest Dragon, Ice Dragon, Midnight Moon Dragon, Mountain Dragon, Cloud Dragon. Here’s my shot of the Mini Chinese Dragon. It reminds me of a favorite comic book creature, artist Jack Kirby’s Fin Fang Foom, first seen in Strange Tales #89 in 1961.SafariMacro_01

SkeletonPete Says…
I can’t resist putting these figures to work as models for some fun macro photographic experiments. Their sharp detail lends itself to close-up work. If you missed it, my 1933 King Kong homage, using a couple of Safari’s mini’s, is posted here.

Safari Ltd's Logo Gator Stalks My Home Brewed Bayou

Safari Ltd’s Logo Gator Stalks My Home Brewed Bayou

The complete selection of Sarfari Ltd’s newest collectibles, with release dates and ordering info, can be found here.

Click Any Image to Launch The Gallery

Activision “Skylanders”: Collectible Toys with Gaming Powers

Another really awesome experience at Toy Fair 2011 was getting a sneak peak at Activision’s new “Skylanders, Spyro’s Adventure” video game. Their booth was totally dedicated to debuting the game and featured giant replicas of the game pieces, including the familiar Spyro the flying purple dragon. Developed by Toys for Bob, the game is an imaginative and immersive adventure with puzzle, treasure hunt and battle components. What sets it apart from other games are it’s collectible figures each representing a character from the virtual world. These beautifully rendered miniatures can be “put into play” by placing them on the circular “portal of power”. Each has a unique set of abilities which can unlock different worlds or accomplish different tasks. Most importantly every toy figure has embedded tech which “remembers” its achievements inside the game and those level-ups and experiences travel with the toy.

Players can place a maximum of two characters at a time on the portal and play cooperatively or in battle mode. Characters exit and enter the game simply by placing or removing them from the portal base giving the player an opportunity to call in creatures as needed for their special masteries. It this manner game play varies endlessly based on which characters are in play, what tasks attempted and the level of each game pieces’ achievements. For instance, a friend who owns a character you do not, may be invited over to help unlock a new level or complete a task.

There will be over 30 characters to collect and use in gameplay, including Terrafin, Chop Chop, Gill Grunt, Trigger Happy and Stealth Elf. The game is set for release in fall of this year and will ship with Spyro, 3 other characters and the portal base, which resembles a castle turret. The game is scored by movie composer Hans Zimmer but Activision opted for AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck” as the soundtrack to the promo video. While aimed at a younger audience is not hard to believe older siblings and even parents will be charmed by the chance to pop a figure on the portal and take a trip to Skyland.

See PiercingMetal’s Toy Fair 2011 Features here.

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Late Late Show Faves – Folkmanis Puppets @ Toy Fair 2011

Continuing our hunt for fantastical creatures at the February 2011 Toy Fair in New York City, PiercingMetal.com’s Ken Pierce and I found ourselves surrounded by a menagerie of dragons, monsters, and even a pirate peering at us through the canopy of a magical forest. As it turned out they were all the exquisitely crafted puppets created by Folkmanis.

You may already know some of the company’s characters from The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. “CraigyFerg” often opens his show with hilariously unorthodox monologues delivered by several of Folkmanis’ creatures. My particular favorite is the cuddly white bunny (“Sid”) who drives the CBS censors wild with his foul language. Back in December 2009 the puppets took over the show entirely in celebration of the 1000th episode. Here’s a look at some of them in their own habitat.

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Safari LTD. Collectible Fantasy Figures

It was a pleasure to meet the nice folks from Safari LTD at Toy Fair 2011. They kindly gave us free reign to photograph the gorgeous dioramas highlighting their products.

Anyone who has visited a museum gift shop is already familiar with Safari LTD’s expansive line of collectible wildlife and dinosaur figures. They are noted for their detailed sculpture and beautiful hand painted finishes. In addition to the array of scientifically accurate animals Safari LTD. has begun to add a wonderful group of fanciful and mythological characters to their product line.

Under the groupings Mythical Realms, Fairy Fantasies, Once Upon A Time, Days of Old the company offers collectors (young and young at heart) an amazing array of choices. I’m particularly fond of the selection of Dragons, love the mini’s found in the company’s Toobs canisters, and I quickly became a fan of the Cyclops, Medusa and Minotaur on display at the fair.

Check out Piercing Metal’s Toy Fair 2011 Coverage here.

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