So, the whole family went to Asheville’s FANATICON, back in May and, being the well-read geeks that we are, thought we would participate in the Kipper’s Trivia Night™ trivia contest (held, surprisingly, during the day) as part of the daylong comic con experience. The four of us managed to exude enough geek culture knowledge to achieve a Fourth Place finish. However, due to an oversight during the award presentations to the winners, our spot was completely skipped and as I was trying to explain from the back of the room while prizes were being given out to Fifth place, Third Place, Second and First Place finishers, “umm… hello… excuse me.. but.. we wuz robbed!!!” Unfortunately, my non-traffic yelling must not emit a blast radius forceful enough to do anything but annoy the people sitting in the row in front of us. So, by the time I walked up to inform triviamaster, Kipper Schauer, of this oversight, the prizes had all been exuberantly handed out. Bummer. The host, bless his soul, felt horrible upon realization of this travesty of justice and scrambled to find something, anything to placate the impending disappointment my expression must have communicated. He managed to hand over a pair of extremely unmint-on-card, dusty, shelfworn New Kids on The Block action figures!
First of all, I never even realized they made action figures of this particular 80s boy band, but these were of Danny and Joe and I am more of a Jordan and Donnie man! Okay, maybe I’m more of a “Color Me Badd” dude, but I’m pretty sure they didn’t have figures made. Seriously though, I am a certifiable action figure geek, but mainly of the movie/animation/comic book variety, and the only interest I would have in figures of said performers would be of the ironic, kitschy variety. I was thankful for the host’s effort to make right the omission and cheerfully accepted the booty as prize fodder. Later, however, I was informed by his dad that Kipper is a vehement NKOTB fan and that parting with these particular treasures (that I must now assume he had just purchased during the con for his own collection/shrine) was a heart-rending Sophie’s Choice for him and that he wanted to make sure that I truly would love and appreciate them. I assured him that I was indeed an action figure connoisseur, but before I could finish the sentence and add “… but I am not exactly a NKOTB fan and would be glad to give them up…” he nodded approvingly and moved on out the room with the rest of the crowd leaving the now ended trivia event.
We finished up the con and I took back my buttons, programs, framed poster, etc. I still am not sure what to do with old Danny and Joe. I’ve tried to see where they can fit in with my existing displays of opened and carded figures in both my office and the DVD closet we watch TV in. I had envisioned using them in a few action figure comics, interacting with more somber figures in which they are the butt of many jokes at their faded glory expense. The articulation isn’t very good on them though, so the possible poses for them are somewhere short of endless. I would say more like one, maybe two if you count lying down as a pose. I also still feel this nagging need to return them to Kipper, whom I imagine to be pining away at the nostalgic bounty he lucked upon only to have snatched away from him before he could even properly enjoy their NewKidsOnTheBlockedness. Therefore, I have been loathe to remove them from their unminty, but nevertheless, mostly intact original packaging.
I am going STEP BY STEP to figure out if these or other environs are a fitting home for these action figures or whether I should package them up and mail them back to Kipper. If he is indeed overwrought over their loss, I hope that he keeps HANGIN’ TOUGH until I can resolve the issue!
Here is how they currently fit in:
I brought those figures to pass out to some lucky team.
Once I received the prize box, I was thrilled to find that I had enough prizes for everyone.
Thinking I had passed out each and every DVD to all of the teams, and that all appetites for glory had been sated, I was very pleased. Realizing the massive over site of your 4th place team, I was very much embarrassed, it was then that I realized that I had brought the figures.
They have massive sentimental value to me, yes, but at this point I am trying to pare down in my figurine possessions. They were actually owned by my neighbor originally, a gentleman by the name of Will Files (who now works for Skywalker Ranch of all places). His brother and I moved in together recently, and these were found upon his last trip back to visit his parents.
Knowing my delight in NKOTB memorabilia, he brought them back to our place and I was delighted. My actual memorabilia collection is nearly non existent at this time. I still have an 89 tour jean jacket (with satin embroidery) and I believe that’s all I really need.
I’m tickled to see all of these pictures, with the kids trying to find a new home. It is my full belief that the fates intervened and blessed you with those two figures, I don’t usually miss a team, and I brought them on a whim.
I’m afraid if you sent them back to me they would only end up as a prize again. Of course the oohs and ahhs they would generate as they were passed out would be lovely, but seeing that you’re an avid collector of all types of figures, I think they truly belong to you now.
Sticking out like a sore thumb, or a jigsaw puzzle piece from a completely different puzzle, their presence in your collection is lovely to see.
I hope they make you chuckle whenever you see them.
Kipper, thanks so much for letting me know the full details of the figures and their fated journey to me. I can’t tell you how much better it makes me feel to know that I am NOT actually Kidsnapping cherished pop culture ornaments that were never meant to be given up! With your permission, I can now add them, somewhere, with an eased conscience. I guarantee elicited chuckles, regardless of their eventual placement of honor. Thanks again!