I still remember the craze that surrounded the Furbie, the Beanie Baby, and the Teletubby doll. Marketing overlords have a terrifying sorcery in their employ that allows them to turn ordinary humans into ravening beasts, lustful for scraps of molded plastic and stitched cloth full of wool. Skylanders, it seems, is the latest diminutive idol to weave its stick voodoo.
A lovely man from Activision who probably shouldn't be seen talking to me sent along a helpful link to an eBay page recently, one full of Skylanders for sale at exorbitant prices. Despite having been launched only late last year, the series of figures is already full of rarities and special edition figures. It's highly manufactured hype, but it seems to be working.
The rare "purple metallic" Cynder toy seems to rake in sums in the area of $200. It was exclusive to the New York Toy Fair, although judging from the eBay list, everybody in America has one. One fellow in the UK flogged a collection of six gold and silver figures for $1,260.46. Meanwhile, another seller shifted five three-packs of metallic blue variants for $650 apiece, for a grand total of $3250!
What's weird about the Skylanders craze is that Christmas is long gone by now. These toy fads usually happen in the run up to the holidays, as parents desperately scrabble to buy their kids' respect with material goods. Apparently, Skylanders is evergreen, and it's making mad cheddar for enterprising collectors.
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3:00 PM on 12.15.2014