Sunday, January 31, 2010

Evan K. Shaw White Rabbit

Next in the Shaw series is the White Rabbit. He's a cute little guy, with his red heart on both the front and back of his herald's uniform.

Interestingly, the red heart is cold painted over-glaze, as is most true red paint on ceramic figures. There's something about red that doesn't agree with the firing process on these older figures, so that color had to be painted after firing over-glaze. As such, you see lots of these White Rabbits with flaking or missing hearts. If any of you out there besides me collect Santa figures from the 1950s you'll know what I'm talking about.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Evan K. Shaw Alice

Known variously over the years as American Pottery, Evan K. Shaw Co. and Metlox, this pottery company produced Disney figures from about 1943 through 1955 or 1956 (Lady and the Tramp was the last film they did figures for). This is Alice.

It has been said that this Alice figure is the most beautiful of all the Shaw figures ever produced, and who am I to argue. She and her cohorts were produced probably only in 1951-52, so relatively speaking they are pretty scarce as far as Shaw figures go. As far as relative scarcity is concerned, Alice is somewhere in the middle.

Alice, as with all the Shaw figures, is identified only by this red foil sticker, which is almost never present. I have mixed feelings about the stickers. On the one hand it is cool to have what amounts to original packaging, but on the other hand sometimes these stickers are placed weirdly and distract from the beauty of the figure itself. Fortunately for me, the Alice has her sticker on the side that you don't look at.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Happy Birthday Lewis Carroll! The Disney Company's Worst Mistake Ever!!

Today is Lewis Carroll's birthday (or rather the Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson's birthday) and what better way to celebrate than to highlight the Disney Company's most monumental lapse in proofreading ever!

That's right ladies and gentlemen, Disney misspelled the author's name on the title card of the film. Now I realize the good reverend had been dead for several decades by this time, but come on, how bad is this? Notice also that they also got the title of the good reverend's book wrong: it should be Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Toffee Tin - Edward Sharp & Sons, Ltd.

This is one of those items you look at and just say "Wow, that is pretty damn cool!"

This is a vintage toffee tin from England, by Edward Sharp & Sons, Ltd. of Maidstone, Kent to be precise. There is no date, but I'm guessing it is from the original release or thereabouts due to the presence of the infamous red-striped stockings.

This particular tin was filled with Plain Super-Kreem Toffee according to the label, which the previous owner graciously removed yet kept in side the tin

along with the Sharp & Sons guarantee.

Edward Sharp & Sons made lots and lots of specialty toffee tins, including this Alice and for sure a Snow White as well. Edward Sharp himself was the first Baronet of Warden Court, a relatively recent Baronetage created in 1922.

Sharps toffee can still be purchased today, although I believe the brand has been purchased by Taveners .

Monday, January 18, 2010

Alice in Wonderland Viewmarx by Marx

What a cool toy this is, and how surprising that they made an Alice! This is called a Viewmarx, it is basically a slide viewer toy, sorta like a viewmaster, but not in 3-D. This is the only one I've ever seen in its original box.

The toy itself is made to look like the White Rabbit's house, which is pretty cool by itself.

The toy is simple to operate, even more simple if you look on the back of the box...

and the bottom...

I managed to get my camera to focus on a couple of the slides through the viewport (not an easy task I might add).

There are a total of 8 slides, and they have all gone very VERY red. This is the best I could do to adjust the color.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Le Patriote Illustré - October 28, 1951

From Belgium comes this oversize newspaper-like magazine from 1951, featuring a single page of Alice.

It is an interesting side-by-side comparison of Alice in Wonderland (or at least 5 scenes) as seen through the eyes of two artists: John Tenniel and Walt Disney.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Punch Magazine - August 8, 1951

I want to thank August Imholtz of the Lewis Carroll Society for alerting me to the existence of this magazine. This issue of Punch contains a very rare thing - a positive review of Disney's Alice in Wonderland from England!

The reviewer makes many of the same points that I've believed for a very long time. That you cannot view the Disney Alice in terms of a strict interpretation of the books, and that while it is certainly not high cinema, it has many very enjoyable and successful moments. The Alice books, while wonderful and enchanting, cannot be filmed as written, it simply is not possible. Any film that has attempted that is unwatchable.

I have a great deal of respect for this reviewer, he took a very unpopular position on the film, and made many good points. Three cheers for Richard Mallett.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Ponda Alice Alphabet Jig-Saw Puzzle

From England comes this small plywood puzzle from a company called Ponda Puzzle Products Ltd., of St. Leonards-on-Sea, Sussex (boy English addresses are a mouthful).

Presumably this is one of a set of 26 puzzles, each with a different Disney character. I've only seen Alice from Alice in Wonderland, but there could be others.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Mickey Mouse Candy and Toy Box - Alice and Mad Hatter

I wish I knew more about this. It appears to be a box that held some sort of chocolate candy and a toy, kinda like Cracker Jack I imagine. I've seen several different boxes and Dan over at a sampler of things has a bunch pictured on his Tick Tock Toys site. This one is the Alice box with art of Alice on one side

and the Mad Hatter on the other side. I don't know what the toy was, whether or not it was themed to the character on the box (I doubt it), but it was probably just some sort of generic toy. Maybe Patrick or Dan know more about what these contained.

UPDATE:  I have recently been made aware of the numbering system of this Candy and Toy series.  If you look at the image of the Alice side of the box, you'll see on the bottom side flap the number 13.  That is the number of the Alice box.  Hake's recently sold a lot of 11 of these boxes from the TOMART archive, and the numbering was described in the auction description.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year! Newly Discovered Coro Plastic Pin of March Hare

A very Happy New Year to all my readers. Today's post is of a newly discovered piece of Coro plastic jewelry, the March Hare pin. I did a series of posts back in October on the Coro jewelry and noted there were a few missing numbers in the Character Merchandise catalog, this could very well be one of those missing numbers!

As with the other plastic pieces, there are no identifying marks, but the material, construction and clasp match those of the known pins, so I'm fairly certain this is indeed a Coro piece.