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Posted on Jul 3, 2013

Toy Tattle’s Alternative Christmas In July Awards

Toy Tattle’s Alternative Christmas In July Awards

It’s Christmas promotions season, and your Twitter feed will be full to bursting with journalists and bloggers making their predictions of what will be the sell out hits this Christmas.

But since we’ve barely glimpsed the Summer yet, I can’t bring myself to talk about the festive season.

Instead here’s my alternative awards from yesterday’s Christmas In July event, which I attended as a UKMumsTV panel member.

The Simply Genius Award – Hexbug Nano V2

The humble Nano has had a makeover for 2013.

He can now perform the extraordinary feat of climbing vertically up a tube, taking the clip together habitats and tracks to a new dimension.

Hexbug Nano V2

And what have Innovation First done to achieve this?

Did they spend stacks of money, and hundreds of hours on research and development to create this new generation.


You know the little rubbery legs on a Nano? The Nano V2 has three of these mounted on his back.

Sure there was some technical stuff to do with the motor.

But from the outside, the only noticeable genius is the back-mounted legs.

And it really does work.

Simply genius.

The What The ….. Award – Pink Cooper

Meet Pinkie Cooper.

When the lovely lady on the Flair stand showed her to me, I was only able to stand there, mouth silently moving up and down like a marooned trout.

Sensing my apprehension, and keen to impress, Flair Lady told me ‘she’s designed by the man who made Bratz dolls – he loves Cavalier King Charles Spaniels’. I desperately chewed my bottom lip, in a bid to regain my composure, but I failed. I don’t have girls, so maybe I am missing the point. Any Pinkie fans out there, please get in touch and explain the appeal.

The Pretending To Be For Kids, But Actually For Grown-ups Award – Bladez Toys

Bladez Spongebob

I’m giving this to the entire Bladez Toys stand, where a group of young men brandished remote controls and pretended to be working, while having a great time (F.A.O. Bladez Toys Big Bosses – they were very helpful and knowledgeable, please don’t sack them, just saying they were obviously having a great time too).

A remote control helicopter sprayed the room with bubbles, while a 2ft remote control minion (Despicable Me 2) darted around the room. Lightning McQueen, R2D2, and Spongebob inflatable RC toys were also on site.

The Most Versatile Toy Award – Chill Factor

Chill Factor
Sure Character Options make toys, and Chill Factor is a slushy maker for kids, but I’ve got other plans for it.

It’s a soft-sided cup, which you put in the freezer overnight, then pour in a drink, squeeze the cup a few times, and make your own slush.

Having been denied a Mr Frosty for my entire childhood (I’m not bitter, much), this had immediate appeal for me, especially once I’d tried it out myself and sampled the sorbet-like fruit juice slush it made.

This instant attraction was maginified ten times when I realized that this is not just for making kid-friendly slush drinks. Take one cup of lemonade, squish until slushy, pour into glass, now trickle over a couple of shots of Pimms. Heaven.

Most Cringey Moment Of The Day Award – Moany Woman In The Lobby

This goes to the blogger I overheard complaining about her goodie bag at the front desk, ‘is this all we get’ {shudder}.

The Toy I Really Hope My Kids Won’t Ask For This Christmas……But I Know They Will Award – VTech Jagger T-Rex

Jagger T Rex
Are you familiar with VTech’s Switch N Go Dinosaurs? Great little transformable vehicle / dino figures.

This is Jagger The T-Rex.

He is voice-controlled, weapon equipped, and very big.

It will be priced at £59.99, but like last years Brok model, you can expect to see it discounted in the run up to Christmas.

It is absolutely enormous.

And it comes fully assembled and ready to go, which means the box it comes in his enormous, and so this will be the biggest present under the Christmas tree.

It’s huge!!!!

And I have two boys – heaven help me if a particularly generous family member decides to get Sons #1 and #2 a matching pair – I’ll have to build an extension to house them.

Other Toys Worthy Of Mention

I really liked The Zelfs, probably because I collected Trolls when I was little, and could picture half a dozen of these little critters lined up on my desk.

I also fell hopelessly in love with Dobble, but they maybe because I was having so much fun playing Danielle at it, on the Esdevium Games stand.

For more toy news, top toy lists, and amusing toy-related ramblings, scroll back up the page and hit one of the pretty social media icons on the right.

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Cheers, ta, and thank you very muchly.