Tuesday, February 10, 2009

My Top 10 Playmobil Toys

If you haven't been introduced to Playmobil, you're probably not alone. So, please let me be the first to show off our top 10 Playmobil picks and welcome you to the fold. If you have been lucky enough to experience these tiny treats, I hope you enjoy the list.

At our house we have a morbid sense of humor that apparently genetically manifested in our daughter. For her birthday she picked out this lovely set. Now, while I am all for diversity and reality in children's play things I'm still not sure about this.

Yes, this would be a nurse/doctor lady with a baby in an incubator. This gets heavy rotation in my kids play so I've included it in my top 10 because they just love it so much. Granted, my first daughter wants to be a baby doctor so maybe this is her way to fantasize about being grown up.

This next piece is a darling. Though we don't own it because I can't find it in any of the stores here.

What gets me the most about this set isn't the adorable tiny bottles or the fact that there's even a teeny money slot. No. What tickles me the most is the mandatory recycling bin. After your little people quench their thirst they can rest easy knowing they're recycling those bottles instead of just chucking them in the bin. Now all we need is a guy to stand around to take the bottles and restock them in the machine. It's not magic you know, it's recycling.

Now, this wouldn't be my top 10 list if I didn't include this set. This is one of my favorites because of the sheer sillyness of the pieces. The bunny line is in it's own category and is far off reality but let us take a closer look at the pieces included...

This set is called Bunny school. I love the fact the teacher is wearing a suit and has a tiny briefcase and a pointing stick taller than he is. It speaks to true professionalism even amongst humans. Please notice the apparatus on the picnic table. What exactly are the bunnies learning about? Could they be learning about chemical compounds to create homemade bombs to come and overthrow the human Playmobil-ites? Or are they simply teaching the younger of their species how to dye the easter eggs laying on the ground behind them? I just love the tiny beakers in the attic of the mushroom house, the basket of carrots for their lunch and the extremely detail oriented picture on the blackboard. This reeks steriotypical bunny-dom and I love every stinkin' piece of it.

What park/zoo/hardware store would be complete without the hot dog vendor. While the above made my list for the silliness, this set makes it for the oddness.
The oddness isn't in the bicycle powered hotdog stand, it's in the creepy vendor. The scruffy hair, mustache, wierdly shaped hat and sloppy looking apron would make me leery to buy dogs from this guy. If I was hungry enough, I could possibly look past those things but I'd have to stop at the blue shoes.

Who doesn't love camping? Let me rephrase, who wouldn't love camping in THIS?

This is possibly one of the coolest Playmobil toys that is actually affordable (the trains and planes are cool but over $100 is pushing it for me) at about $40. What the photo doesn't show is that the top lifts off and there is actually a sleeping space for everyone. That kind of attention to deatil is what has drawn me to these toys. Check out the lovely depiction of picturesque vacation-ism on the side of the camper. This is one of those details that you actually do see on RVs, yet, how many of us would think of taking a camper to the beach? Someone, somewhere did a survey of old people that can afford to buy campers and figured out they usually go to Florida when Rv-ing. I mean, what else do we have here in Florida besides sunsets and palm trees that would subliminally coax a snow covered retiree into a lease? While we can't afford one, we can live vicariously though Playmobil and go camping in style anyway.

Ah, farm life. While others may think farming is a quiet, peaceful oasis Playmobil knows better.
In a quick glance at this set you may be lulled into the cuteness of it but taking a closer look you'll see that this is a more realistic depiction of farm life than it may seem. Check out the plantable and harvestable carrots, the baby animals being raised for food, the fully functional watering can filled up from the manual well, the children working and not playing video games or whining about having to feed the cow or take carrots to the science bunnies. The Heidi-esque landscape is a winner for me; this family takes lemons and makes lemonade. And we can't forget the sickle in the corner which could always be borrowed by the ghost.

Here's another favorite because of the realness of it. One of the reasons we love Playmobil as grownups is because we can relate to the honesty of the characters. Barbie is just too perfectly fashion and romance driven to move us. No. Give us a crappy wedding reception under a pop up tent, folding tables and an open bar and we're much more in our zone.
I love that the main feature of this isn't the cake with tiny wedding topper, three (yes, three) presents or caterer (when at a wedding like this though, he's called the barbeque technician) it's the drunken wedding guests and the prefilled blue margaritas. This is probably the only place a guy with a brown belt, black shoes and a windbreaker with a tie could score. He's obviously jobless, can't afford to get his pants tailored or a haircut for a wedding for christsakes. Then again, the lady with the horrible spotted giraffe dress with white shoes isn't doing much for me either. I really hope it isn't after labor day.

These sets can help grownups teach the finer points in life. Such as, that one lousy, drunken lay can result in this.
Being a single mom isn't the end of the world, it's actually an improvement in some cases but throw in the fact that neither parent has any kind of dressing skills and you end up with a kid that's a genetic color coordinating disaster. They all seem happy enough but that's because they don't know any better.

Now for another acessory. This is a definate must have for the following people
1. anyone with viking playmobil
2. anyone with a loose understanding of pirates
3. anyone with boys
4. grownups that have a cubical (you can rain paperclips down on people and they'll never know it's you)

They call this a sling shot but really people, it's a trebuchet. This is a wonderful addition to teaching simple mechanics to your kids. Plus it's just really, really cool. I especially like the burning vats of oil. Those will cause some serious damage.

Here's the last set on this list (I'm sure I'll have another playmobil list at some point). I really enjoy the piping on the moms pants and the color coordination of the mother and androgynous child.

Playmobil a mobile play.
Mother: come on child, lets get this wagon to the picnic site before the cut up watermellon leaks all over
child: just a minute mom. I want to finish my bag of yellowy round things
(drops bag of round things)
oh no! My round things in my bag!
mother: I'm not giving you any more
(hears leaves rustling and small squeeky, chittery noises)
What is that?
Child: It's a herd of wild domesticated squirrles!!! They're after my round things!

Mother: Don't be afraid, they react to fear. Just put your arms up and smile and slowly back away. We don't want them to attack, move too fast and your loud, mismatched clothes might attract them.
That's it for the list. I hope you've enjoyed it and discover some of the joys of these teeny toys.

No comments: