Friday, September 3, 2010

Stuffed Vulcans

This will be one of the strangest posts I'll ever write here but there is a history of Star Trek plush Vulcans that needs uncovering!

The first Star Trek plush toys were released by Knickerbocker in 1979 in conjunction with Star Trek: The Motion Picture.  Knickerbocker was a New York company founded in the 1850s.  It became famous in the mid 1920s when it started producing licensed plush toys based on Disney characters.  The Star Trek line consisted of two toys: Kirk and Spock.  I think they're extremely strange and don't have one in my collection, however, the sculpt of Spock's head is a fairly strong likeness.
Chronologically, we now have to jump forward to the 1990s where Applause (a company that has created many Star Trek collectables over the years) released a Vulcan teddy bear in celebration of Star Trek's 30th anniversary. These bears are about 16 inches tall.
In 1998, my favourite plush Vulcan was released by a New York company called The Idea Factory.  They released a collection of six Star Trek Alien Beans to capitalize on the Beanie Baby craze.  Included in the collection was an Andorian, a Ferengi, a Klingon Targ, a Gorn, a Mugatu and a Vulcan.  

I actually really like all of these but the Vulcan is especially great.  The expression on his face is perfect and his costume is even inscribed with fairly accurate representations of rata, tafar and tapan.
The 2009 Star Trek film created an opportunity for a great deal of licensed products.  Foam hands giving the Vulcan salute were available at the San Diego Comic Con to promote the film.
A company called Toy Box, which is known for creating the products for those toy vending machines with the claws, created four plush Star Trek toys: Kirk, Spock, Scotty and a Vulcan Salute Glove.  These are each about 9-10 inches in height and are still available from ThinkGeek (and in a vending machine near you!).
Notice that the glove even features Spock's rank braid around the wrist.
Finally, in 2009, the Vermont Teddy Bear Company released an incredible pair of 15 inch bears resembling Kirk and Spock.  The Spock bear is now sold out on the official website but the Kirk bear is still available.  Collectors love these!  They feature highly detailed uniforms and even treads on the boots.

I don't yet have one of these in my collection but I do really like the Spock bear so I'll probably hunt eBay for it.

There you have it, a brief history of Stuffed Vulcans.  After all, even Spock had a "teddy bear" in the form of his sehlat, I-Chaya.  Maybe the next Vermont Bear will have six-inch fangs.

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