The Greatest Trip To Target Ever

Today's Friday and I was feeling a little adventurous. And it's payday. That's never a good way to start the weekend. And since I've been put on a new diet, I've been trying to find new things to do to get my mind off eating. Quite frankly staying active is the key more than anything. And living in a small apartment, it can be rather easy to be lazy and inactive. I mean, who wants to walk around and get fit when I could sit and watch Miami Connection?

So today I ventured out to Target for a few items for around the house. I expected an average trip. Nothing more than looking at the mens ware, toys, seasonal items and the dvds. I expected no more, nothing less. I have my shopping regimen and I like to stick with it. But today was no average trip. And quite frankly, out of all the "big box" department stores, Target's usually the one to get the most enjoyment out of your trip. Target usually has cool new stuff and their clearance racks are always amazing. Where else can I get a Batman soap dispenser for 3.50 and a Toy Story Christmas Ornament for 35 cents? Now, i grew up a K-Mart guy, but I've always had my love of Target. Not as much as my girlfriend Laurie, who worships Target, but I've always loved Target. Their high quality merchandise and clean stores usually made K-Mart look even filthier. And we won't even compare it to WalMart...

I kinda had an idea of what to expect. I've been waiting for the summer Justice League kitchenware to go on clearance. I've also been addicted to the new Chocolate-Peanut Butter PopTarts (I'll get to those in a later entry). But in no way was I expecting what I found when I turned the corner of the kitchenware. It was like a treasure trove of pop culture, all wrapped up in plastic and at a reasonable price. And luckily, my iPhone came in more handy than I thought...

Thar she blows. Kitchenware of your favorite heroes and cartoons. I know what you're thnking. "What's the big deal? I've seen stuff like this before". And I'm sure you have seen bottles and cups featuring Ninja Turtles and Marvel heroes, but not the level of jaw-dropping quality and eye popping detail. Clicking the picture above will show in better detail the selection of awesome items available. But, I'll gladly show my favorite items from each shelf.

First, from the top, are water/sports bottles. More stylish than the sports bottles that I'd take to school on field day. You remember them? The big cylinders with straws? Usually in awesome late 80s/early 90s neon? If you didn't have a Ninja Turtles sports bottle, you were cast away to play in the outfield. Well, good news, now you make up for that folly as a child with a new stylish, Ninja Turtles sports bottle. In tasteful green, the classic Turtles pose stands literally screams TURTLE POWER!!!! Yeah!!!! I agree!!!! Something very turtley and powerful at the same time about this. Now, my spellcheck informs me that the word "turtley" doesn't register as a real word, but it's my blog, and if I want to invent a word, I'll go for it. Be aware, there are two types of these sports bottles: one with a flip up straw and one with a screw off top. Both bottle types have awesome designs, but only one can be purchased.The X-Men and Ninja Turtles bottles you see above are the ones with a flip up straw available. Working at a summer camp, these could come in very handy. As much as I love the homage to the classic X-Men by displaying Giant Sized X-Men #1, the Ninja Turtles clearly win this matchup. Despite the X-Men bottle going the extra mile by giving Professor X the spotlight on the back, the green bottle alone is rather eye catching and it looks like you're drinking Shredder's Ooze. And who wouldn't want that?

The next items that come up are the adult sippy cups. These cups have become extremely popular as of late and are very handy are the house. Made to resemble fountain drink cups, these cups are usually made of plastic and "double walled" which is just fancy for "won't sweat and leave stupid rings on your table". These are pretty cool actually. Laurie and I have several. And from the looks of it, we're gonna have several more. Laurie's a Wonder Woman fan, so I'm sure she'll be buying that one. Personally, I think it looks a little silly. Yes, we all know Wonder Woman's famous black hair, tiara and piercing blue eyes. But, the rubber wraparound cup hugger just seems silly as a design and as an addition to the cup. But that's just me. It's an eye catching red cup and it's Wonder Woman, so you can't really go wrong with it. And speaking of not going wrong, once again the Ninja Turtles come into play. I like this cup and out of everything, this is the one I'd buy. it's a classic pose that I had seen plenty of times as a child on t-shirts, buttons, and even a trashcan. And for that reason alone, it warrants a swift purchase. Also, not on the back, the sewer pipes and the respective colors of the masterful warrior reptiles themselves. It's a nice cup, and quite frankly the coolest looking image.

Next up, are old style plastic soda/beer mugs. We all had these growing up. It was a given. You'd walk into a kitchen and grab one and fill it up with orange soda and plop down on the couch and watch TGIF and much on some Cheetos Paws. But, sadly after about 10 years, my plastic A&W mug decided to crack.It was about as heartbreaking as when I found out Dame Edna was really a man. Time heals all wounds, sure, but how could I ever buy a new mug? Well, finally, after about 15 years, I've found my replacement. Above you see Ninja Turtles and the classic MTV logo. And as you can surmise, the Turtles seem to be getting the last two victories, but the surprise of the neon pink mug and retro logo punched me in the face like a giant fist. Despite the pompous catchphrase of "Cool But Crude", no doubt describing Raph's penchant for sarcasm and repeating lines from Garfield, this one just doesn't stack up like the others did before him. The joyous look on Raphael's face can't last long knowing he lost one for the team. Knowing you lost to a corporate logo has to be about as depressing as watching a Bill Murray movie from the past ten years. I'm sure Michelangelo will never let him live it down. At the same time, that's a mighty attractive mug. In fact, if it didn't say "2013" in the copyright on the back, you'd swear it was an old item from the 80s or 90s. MTV wins this one for sure. And when was the last time you heard anyone say that about MTV?

On the very bottom shelf are little party cups. And without a doubt, my favorite surprise. I'm not a fan of Star Trek or Marvel, so the Turtles win the kitchenware challenge. Not that the others didn't try, but when I'm offered 4 cups with Mikey on it and it says "Party Dude", it's a surefire sale. And that's all because Michelangelo was everyone's favorite. No one liked Donatello. If this was a Donatello cup, they'd be sitting on clearance till next Easter.

I had to get away from this section. People were staring at a giant 6'3 bald man taking 10 pictures of each cup and it was quite frankly a little annoying. So, I headed over to the toy section to take a look at the newest figures but not before I pass...

A Batman shower curtain. Hot dog, we're on a real roll here. Ignore the glare from the flash. It's not hiding anything you've never seen before. Just Batman swinging in and acting important. Quite frankly all you need to know is it's a giant black shower curtain with the Batman logo with a yellow and grey border above and below. Quite frankly, it's perfect. Just imagine getting out of the shower and looking at it. My gosh, it's as perfect as you'll get. Now, trying to convince my girlfriend that it would be a good idea to swap our current shower curtain for this, though...that will be the challenge. I know for a fact this won't go with our bathroom decor, but it's worth a shot. Besides, no one can say no to Batman.

Ironic how that last sentence ended, no? Just as I walked over to the toy section I encountered this beauty. A new figure in the Batman Unlimited toy line. So called "Planet X Batman". taken from some comic in the 50s, this Batman came from another planet. Supposedly a planet that allows grown men running around in red pajamas with purple shorts in public. By that statement, you'd think West Virginia loosened up, but don't be fooled. Planet X is just an alternate reality. As impressive as that figure is, look next to him. What do you see?

BATMITE. OH YEAH. Forget what I said about the Ninja Turtle cup. This two pack is easily the greatest money grabber in the store. Although a little blurry, you can still tell it's him. Essentially a goofy character created to make jokes and hit on Batgirl. What proved as a joke, turned out to be a mascot of sorts and a character that developed a cult following. And why not? It's a mini-Batman. I'd be hardpressed to find someone who didn't like him. In fact, I'm sure if you don't like him, you're probably a Communist. How do you feel now, Commy?

Another awesome aspect of the recent onslaught of superhero merchandising is the collaboration between Marvel and DC and Lego. I find it interesting that these companies cam together. I remember clear as day in Toyfare magazine back in 2000 or so, Toyfare presented ideas for new lines and one of them was Marvel and DC. The Lego exec responded "won't happen. the licenses are too expensive.". Well, what the price tag must've lowered, Look at these. DC heroes and a Batcave. Sure, it's just a tiny sample, but a great sample of the fantastic stuff Lego is pounding out. Along with a billion other movie and cartoon properties, Lego is counting money hand over fist. And looking at these figurines and playsets, you can't blame them. I've officially entered the age of saying "where were these when I was a kid". That's coming from someone who grew up in the 80s and 90s, so I'm either being selfish or dramatic. Or both.

So, moving on, I really had to check out the dvd section. You never really know with department stores what the dvd selection will be. And since I'm a lover of bargain dvds and multi packs, I'm always on the hunt. And boy did I stumble into some gold today...

 Lifelong bad-boy Johnny Depp got his big break in popular teen drama and Fox smash hit, 21 Jump Street. It was a fantastic show, one that I can watch to this day. Now, years ago I actually had the entire series on dvd. Every season, every episode, everything. Including that last awful season. Those dvd's became out of print and the pain of selling them sucked. Thankfully, dvd distributor Mill Creek, a company that prides itself on selling movies and tv series at bargain-bin prices, re-released them and gave those who missed out on the wacky antics of Doug Penhall another chance. And it seems Target has really been bundling tv series together. First and second series can now be owned for a low price. Now, the price of 25.95 is a decent price for these two seasons. But when I turned the dvd's around to take a quick gander at the specs...

$6.56?!?!?!?! Really?!?!?! That's way below what you should legally be expected to pay for a glimpse of Detective Hoffs dressed like a punk. And for two seasons, no less! Amazing. I don't know why these are labeled "AS IS", but at this price, I'm willing to find out. One way or the other, this will gladly make my dvd shelf.

I had to get out of here. Just looking around was making my wallet bleed. And quite frankly I had forgotten about what I originally came for. I needed to hightail it out of here in a bad way. But, one more item called me. An item so massively awesome, it can hardly be described with words. But I'll try my best.

A cheeseburger bank. For 12.99 too. This is no piggy bank, that's for sure. This is totally in your face and nonstop attitude. Look at it. Why put your loose change in a pig or even a cup when you can put it in a cheeseburger?!? There's no doubt that this was made for the college kids or younger, but if this doesn't catch your eye, I don't want to know you. Amazing isn't it? An item that would perhaps one day belong in a museum. Saving your money has never been so tasty and sexy.

Finally hitting an all time high and realizing nothing else in the store could even come close to the cheeseburger bank, I left. My pride intact, knowing I didn't fill my cart with this stuff. I do have rent to pay. But tomorrow is another day and a second chance to pick some of these items up. After this trip to Target, it's gonna be hard going to any other store. But I look forward to the next adventure. Good or bad... K-Mart sense is tingling...


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