Disney Stuff - Monsters University Merchandiseby Chris Barry, staff writer
Welcome back to another Disney Stuff.
Nobody does a marketing campaign like the Walt Disney Company. Even if you're not a Disney fan, you probably know that Disney–Pixar's Monsters University is in theaters right now. The onslaught of marketing has been hard to escape. Mike and Sulley have certainly been everywhere lately. And it's no wonder. They are, after all, kicking off the summer blockbuster season with a high profile prequel to one of their most famous films and featuring two of their most beloved characters. I was there on opening day last week with my 10-year-old sons. Monsters, Inc. is one of our all-time favorites and we couldn't get to the theater fast enough.
All in all, we were pretty satisfied with Monsters University. While I do think that the whole college underdog movie has definitely been done before, the movie kept us entertained. I think they respected the characters and the world created in the classic first film and I, for one, was pretty content to revisit the monster world again.
Of course, part of the marketing campaign is the inevitable slew of Monsters University merchandise that's out there. My sons were interested in getting some of the new characters, either in plush or action figure form. I was hoping for something a little more unique. For about a month leading up to a film's release you can usually find some cool merchandise in your local Disney Store promoting the film. In that short timeframe you might actually be able to find a bona fide collectible despite the fact that the Disney Store has pretty much abandoned us older Disney fans in favor of the kids. If the film is a success, after a few weeks or so, the plush toys and the action figures will probably still be there. The collectibles will disappear, so you have to act quickly.
The Monsters University display at our local Disney Store, which we—of course—hit right after the afternoon showing that day, had some interesting things. The boys were able to each get a pair of plush monsters. If you haven't seen it yet I'm not giving anything away by telling you that the different fraternities and sororities of MU play a major role in the film. One of my guys went with the JOX fraternity. Here's new character Percy:
He also came home with a returning character from the original Monsters, Inc. film and one of my favorites, George Sanderson:
My other son went with the Roar Omega Roar (ROR) monsters. Both are new characters. Here's Chet:
So what was I able to find on the Disney Store shelves? Actually, I didn't do all that bad. I was able to find a very cool Monsters University mug. I love the fact that there are no other markings, no movie logos, no Disney logos, just the famous logo from the now famous university which looks awfully similar to the logo for that famous supplier of scream, Monsters Incorporated.
Disney always likes to get you to spend more money once you've already spend some—and let's face it, I'm always happy to oblige. I've written about the whole "purchase with a purchase" thing before in regards to shopping in the Disney Parks. You spend a certain amount of money and you get a deal on some other merchandise. This time around at the Disney Store, "the purchase with a purchase" items were Monsters University pins. There are pins from each fraternity and sorority depicted in the film. You can buy them online or at the Disney Store for $10.95, but if you buy any Monsters University merchandise you can get as many as five pins per customer for $5.00 each. So, of course, I had to buy some pins. I was spending the money on the mug and plush monsters anyway, so Disney pins for a bargain? I'm in.
Here's the aforementioned Roar Omega Roar fraternity pin:
Slugma Slugma Kappa, or EEK, is one of three Monsters University sorority pins available:
One of the others, Eta Hiss Hiss or HSS, is sort of the Goth, punk sorority:
Here are the jocks from Jaws Theta Chi or JOX:
And, of course, there's Mike and Sulley's fraternity OK, otherwise known as Oozma Kappa:
We're only missing one pin from one sorority the Python Nu Kappas; or PNK. Maybe I'll splurge for the $10.95 online just to have the whole set.
These pins are the real deal. They're solid, well designed cloisonné pins just like you'd find for sale in the Disney Parks. The Disney Store just about never has any pins for sale anymore. If a special, limited promotion like this one comes around and you're a pin collector, better hop on it before they're gone.
So, the kids got some cool toys to play with and Dad got some pins for the pin board and a nice Monsters, Inc. mug for his collectible shelf. All in all, the Disney Store treated us well when it comes to this film. They didn't have it in the store, but there's a very cool, authentic-looking Monsters University window cling for the family car on its way to me from DisneyStore.com.
More importantly, we had some good quality family time together with the latest Disney–Pixar film—and that's always the best part about being a family of Disney fans, isn't it? Building some fun memories with our favorite storytellers.
Have you seen Monsters University yet? What do you think of some of this merchandise from the film? Click on the link below; let me hear your thoughts, and I'll see you next time with more of that great Disney Stuff.