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Mattel Research


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#1 syntaxkid

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 05:52 PM

http://www.scribd.co...ttel-case-study

I'm sure someone here has come across this article written by a business professor from Dartmouth on Mattel. It seems the company was a real mess in the 1980's, financially and organizationally. Also, it's apparent they had some major legal issues pretty high in their ladder, which revolved around their factories in Asia. Correct me if I'm wrong, and its not my intention to put a kink in our research efforts...Could it be that our hypotheses about M.U.S.C.L.E., super rares, etc. are in reality just non-sense in that we may be trying to inject logic into an operation that was carried out illogically and willy nilly by the manufacturers and distributors of these toys? Also, is it possible that these super rare figures were produced for the Japanese Kinnikuman Line, and in fact they tried out our plastic for kicks, testing purposes, or by mistake on a small number of runs?
Also, I had a thought while talking with my fiance last night who is actually from S.E. Asia and actually worked in toy factories as an adolescent in the Philippines. According to her, the "main factories" outsource their work to factories that will make them for cheaper labor, and what goes on there is for the contracted "main factory" to handle, not Bandai or Mattel. These are not bootlegs per se because they make their way back to the other factories for shipment to the official market. Things can happen there that the toy company misses, and certainly things that a researcher in another hemisphere 20 years later would have a very difficult time figuring out.
Also, companies know more about underground markets and collector items than they let on. In fact, they lie. Here is some curious information that may or may not apply to toys. If anyone remembers the Hostess Chocodile, you'll feel my pain!
http://www.hostesscakes.com/
http://www.freshchocodiles.com/

Note: Hostess denies that this line exists!
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#2 8BitIcyman

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Posted 02 August 2009 - 07:02 PM

I personally don't think that Bandai would be testing out with new plastics, because the Japanese plastic remained constant before, and after, the Mattel release.
It's also provable that Satan Cross was, in fact, produced widely at one point.

Edited by 8BitIcyman, 02 August 2009 - 07:08 PM.

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#3 General Veers

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Posted 03 August 2009 - 04:25 AM

While I had not read that article (and it seems a bit too focused on modern Mattel), the financial problems of Mattel during the mid-80's are no mystery. It was so bad they reference on the website as "maximizing their core brands."

And there is no way the SR's were chase figures. Every Mattel employee has said the same thing. Officially designated "collectible" figures had not been invented. Mattel was just starting to learn about it, which is why we have the poster.
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#4 syntaxkid

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 03:50 PM

I'm appaulled that no one commented on the chocodile! Just kidding. I guess my point was is that the theories can always turn out to be wrong, and that hypotheses in general only turn out to be meaningful when there is some actual effect or pattern beneath the data. If there isn't, then any hypothesis is a no-go. There may be thousands of these super rares, or there may in fact be zero and someone out there knows exactly which plastic to use. I concede the point about satan cross, and I have one in a package that I can confirm does not appear to be a re-seal or anything shady. That said, he has cropped up hundreds of times, in proportional fashion to the few we have in packages. But when only one pops up here and there, one just doesn't have sufficient data to say this is a legit piece manufactured by mattel or not. This is not to start trouble, you guys know infinitely more about muscle than I, as Ive only been collecting a year and a half.
Another area I can think of, one in which I do have expertise, and several years of collecting under my belt is Nike SB Dunk sneakers. They have a limited runs, some which are only produced in lots of 20 pairs, even 1 pair. And I'm here to tell you that there are fakes which CANNOT be discerned. One of my best friends has an account with Nike at his Massachusetts skate shop and gets these sneakers officially, and so he knows them even better. We have both come across pairs that match down to a scannable bar code! The only reason we know they are fake is because of the low price, and the fact that they are coming from malaysia and hong kong in every case. The smell, the fabrics, the rubber, the bar codes all are legit. In fact nike only owns the swoosh label, and they have factories that subcontract to factories who then employ people who have access to all the material types and color codes, etc.
Just food for thought I guess.
Colin
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#5 General Veers

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 04:29 AM

The fact that they aren't real MUSCLE's is considered a theory.

And I think everyone would agree they are only theories until we have substantial data.

You are adamantly agreeing with us. :)
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#6 syntaxkid

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 05:14 PM

Yeah, I think I am...it's just interesting to toss ideas back and forth. Anyway, my mother is coming to visit me this weekend with my old muscles and there is a lightbulb man in there...so we're either going to have a new super rare, or a major dilemma on our hands. I never bought japanese toys, or bootlegs and all my figures came from 10 and 28 packs. So, Ill keep you guys updated for sure.

And.....still.....no love for the Chocodile?!?!?
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#7 Ericnilla

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 07:06 PM

i love chocodiles, i buy them every now and again. They have shrunken tho, they once were larger than twinkies, now they share the same size. :-)
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#8 dankingery

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 07:32 PM

i only had chocodiles a few times. i did like them though. in fact, the first time i ever had one i was prolly four years old. my grandma gave it to me after a trip to the zoo. i remember how much i loved getting to eat chocolate crocodiles, at least that's what i imagined while i was eating them. i think they inspired a dream i had. i was in a world made entirely out of chocolate. there was a wide canyon with steep jagged cliffs of chocolate. a chocolate suspension bridge was high above a river of chocolate milk that was filled with chocolate crocodiles. my dad and i were negotiating the bridge and trying not to fall. i almost never remember any of the dreams i have, but i seem to distinctly remember ones that involve food. :)
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#9 Universal Ruler Supreme

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Posted 06 August 2009 - 12:05 AM

Thanks Dan, now I have to go chug a gallon of milk to sate my cravings. :) Hopefully I can avoid the Chocolate syrup bottle.....Aw crap too late. :p
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