March 28th, 2007


(no subject)

So I sent off for a red Wax Lion, like the one from Wonderfalls. He arrived yesterday. I can see why the producers were so enamored of him*. He has a sweet, intelligent face, and looks like he could talk if he really wanted to. He reminds me of the understudy Lion in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe that had a boycrush crush on Aslan: "Did you hear that? He said 'us lions!'"

This Lion starts talking to me, he's going into a double-boiler, STAT.

The wax isn't quite wax and isn't quite plastic, with a slightly soapy texture. The TV version is more opaque, no surprise since he's CGI a lot of the time. This one is thin and takes on a glow if there's any backlighting nearby.

There is also a rare, insanely expensive Wonderfalls promo lion, with smooshed face, that was sent out to TV critics when the series started. He's cast in resin, and may or may not be solid.

*Background: Wonderfalls Lion comes from something called a Mold-A-Rama machine. They were common in the 1960s. You put in your quarter (or however much it was), and the machine would produce a brand-fresh, injection-molded waxy/plasticy figure while you waited. The pieces are thin and somewhat fragile, but they have a Marx plastic molded toys aesthetic that you don't see often nowadays, except in those tiny bags of fluorescent dinosaurs and green army men. There are still working machines around, reportedly the LA Zoo, the Brookfield Zoo, et al. Animals and dinosaurs seem to be the most common subjects, but you'll also find train engines, astronauts, etc.

Should you not have access to a machine, Mold-A-Rama figures turn up on eBay a lot, prices ranging from pretty much nothing to OH DEAR JESUS. Colors are in the smallest Crayola box range.

I find myself fascinated by the whole business in the same way I was when I first encountered a pressed penny machine. "Such wonders exist? Why was I not informed?"