Last week I received the following urgent e-mail:
DISNEY STORE CELEBRATES GRAND OPENING OF NEWLY-DESIGNED STORE AT SAINT LOUIS GALLERIA
My initial response was — I could not possibly care less. I’ve been to the Disney Store. Lots of Beauty and the Beast figurines and toy Cars cars and Toy Story pajamas and Disney Princess everythings. Not my scene.
But then it hit me. Disney now owns Marvel.
Surely the new, improved Disney store would have Marvel merchandise. That is why they bought Marvel, right? To turn their characters into toys and pajamas and backpacks, right? They didn’t buy Marvel because they thought The Punisher was the perfect match for Jasmine. They surely didn’t buy Marvel because of all the dough rolling in from the comic book division. They’re not stupid at Disney.
Now I’m thinking I should check out the new Disney Store. After all, my favorite store at the Galleria used to be the late, lamented Warner Bros. Studio Store. If the new Disney Store carries as much Marvel crap as the WBSS carried DC crap, I will be in heaven.
But before I drive all the way to the Galleria, I do my due diligence (which in this case means I typed DISNEY STORE MARVEL into the Yahoo search engine).
How have I missed this? Why didn’t you tell me? I am the worst Hawkeye fan ever. And the figure was released in August! That was weeks ago! What are the odds I’m going to find a Disney Store Exclusive Marvel Select Hawkeye in a store now? I’m going to have to go on eBay and probably pay $200 for one. And when The Wife asks me why I spent $200 on a doll, I’m going to have to invoke “King Lear” and I like to save those.
I mean, I have to have it. Just look at it. That is one fine-looking action figure. That is the finest Hawkeye action figure yet. And I’ve seen them all so I know what I’m talking about. Look at that base — he’s standing over the defeated, arrow-riddled body of Ultron. Ultron! One of The Avengers’ main villains! How the Hell did Hawkeye beat Ultron? He’s a killer robot made of Adamantium! This is so awesome.
And you can’t see it from the picture, but one of the arrows has The Wasp sitting on it. How cool is that? Granted, it doesn’t make much sense since The Wasp has wings and doesn’t really need to ride one of Clint’s arrows to get airborne. Still cool.
So I made my way through the driving rain to the Galleria. I hadn’t been there in some time — the Warner Bros. Studio Store closed years ago — but it was all familiar. The Disney Store was right at the entrance I came in. I walked to the door and a nice lady said “May I help you?” and I said “I can help myself, thank you.” and she said “You’ll have to wait in line to get in” and I said — no, I thought to myself, “Are you kidding me?”
There were three or four people waiting to go in and three or four people keeping them from going in. I walked around some large barrier to the maze which I walked through to join the three or four people who were waiting. By the time I walked through the maze they were letting in the three or four people and let me in as well. I tried not to roll my eyes as I walked past the nice lady who stopped me from going in 30 seconds earlier.
The shop was smaller than I was expecting. The press release made it sound like it was some massive thing but it was your standard mall store size. That meant it was jam-packed with clutter, I mean merchandise. Also people. Why are all these people and their kids at the mall on a Wednesday morning?
Once inside my eye was drawn directly to the small Marvel display, just behind The Lion King display. There was a lot of Captain America stuff and some Spider-Man stuff and several Marvel Select action figures — including the Disney Store Exclusive Marvel Select Hawkeye. My trip has not been in vain. There was other Marvel stuff that featured Hawkeye and other Marvel Heroes– but I don’t need another mug or water bottle or metal brief case or hardcover notebook.
They did have Marvel stuff in other parts of the store so I walked the whole place. There was other stuff, too, but I was too happy about my new Hawkeye to pay any attention. Here, here’s what you can look forward to — straight from the press release:
Disney Store’s new design aims to deliver “the best 30 minutes of a child’s day” through immersive experiences, including a Disney Princess Castle with Magic Mirror, Translucent Magical Trees, Disney CARS neighborhood, and the Disney Store Theatre, featuring the latest in Disney entertainment.
Wow. That sounds pretty cool. I guess I should’ve been paying more attention. I do recall the big screen in the back corner.
They had quite the stock of standard Disney stuff. Lots of princess outfits and Cars and Toy Story stuff. Needs more Marvel, like some nice Christmas ornaments or figurines. But it’s just the first day. And they launched their Disney Store Marvel Select line with Hawkeye, so clearly Disney knows what it’s doing.