Playmobil Tie-In Toy Review

Del’s Food Truck and Marla with the Flying Horse

Playmobil Movie Tie-In Toy Review

Reviewing toys is something a new experience to me. As a kid I had lots and lots of toys that I would play with all the time, and I’m sure I would have loved the opportunity to review them, but as an adult I don’t tend to really “make-believe” all that often… at least, not with toys, anyway.

So, when BRWC asked me to review some of the Playmobil tie-in toys, released ready for the upcoming Playmobil movie, I was somewhat reluctant to take on the job. However, I had an ace in the hole. My children, aged eight and four, would love to get their hands on some Playmobil sets… and I figured maybe they might like to review them instead.

So, that’s sort of what I did. After a couple of days playing with the sets, I sat down with them to have a chat about how they felt about them. Turns out, they were big successes. As I’m writing this my son is still sat on the floor playing with them both. Count that as a win, Playmobil… his attention span is practically non-existent.

Where to begin? Well, I’ll start with the unpacking and go from there. The two sets that arrived were Del’s Food Truck and Marla with the Flying Horse. My daughter took the Flying Horse, took it out of the box and had it assembled and ready to go before I’d even finished reading the instructions for the other. I asked her how she found putting it together and she said it was “easy”. She seemed to take great pleasure in the fact that she’d done it herself, which is always great to see, and was away and playing before I could get much more out of her.

Del’s Food Truck, on the other hand, was more difficult to assemble. Admittedly, it likely would have been easier if my son had ripped open all the individual plastic bags that contained the many smaller pieces and then strewn them across the floor, but several of the bits were fiddly and involved squeezing my hand uncomfortably through gaps none the less. Del’s Food Truck would most definitely require an adult present to set it all up. It took me around half and hour to forty minutes to get it all together (bearing in mind all the bits had been taken out and thrown around the place, mind you) and then there are the stickers.

Despite the difficulty of getting all the pieces in place, once it was ready to go, I couldn’t help but be impressed by the level of detail in the set. There’s everything from a coffee cup to a milkshake to mini-Playmobil-sized burgers there for kids to play with. Some of these pieces are pretty small, so could get lost or swallowed by younger kids, but the age range is clearly labelled on the box so… I guess that would sort of tell you what to expect.

The kids took the sets and started to craft a little game together. Del’s Food Truck also comes with a little table and stand that sits just out the front of the actual truck itself, and this meant that squabbling between the two was kept to a minimum.

Rather cleverly, as well, as my son pointed out when I was speaking to him about it, the front and the top of Del’s Food Truck lifts off but is easy to re-attach. This meant that he was able to get in and out of the actual truck without much difficulty, and he had a lot of fun using the little draws and cupboards that are inside to make the burgers and serve them to his sister. At one point I even overheard him telling his sister off for not washing her hands after eating, and he made her character, Marla – who comes with the Flying Horse, use the sink inside the truck to do so (like I said, there’s a LOT of detail in it… it’s super impressive).

The characters themselves, Del and Marla, and a third, who is unnamed as far as I could tell but acts as a customer for the food truck, are all pretty much what you’d expect from a Playmobil set. My kids found it hilarious that Del apparently looks like me, but other than that there’s not an awful lot I can really add to them.

The one real negative I got back was from the food truck. My son became increasingly more and more irritated (and by irritated I mean he loudly groaned, pushed the set away and then carried on playing after a moment) by the fact that when you move the food truck around – its wheels actually work, so you can sort of drive it about – the baskets, pots and pans that he’d put neatly away inside would all fall out. Perhaps it would have benefited from a more secure storage area, but it didn’t seem to bother him enough to stop him from playing, and in the end he pulled a strop when he had to put it away and it was time for bed.

The impressive detail in Del’s Food Truck, along with the many extra bits included inside (such as the burgers, table, pots, pans, baskets and cups) did mean that my daughter felt somewhat short changed by Marla and the Flying Horse, which doesn’t really include all that much. But then that is quite clearly determinable from the boxes, and so if you were purchasing them in a shop, I guess you’d probably purchase something more evenly.

Overall both sets were a success. I won’t bother summing them up myself, and instead I’ll give you the ratings my kids gave me.

MARLA AND THE FLYING HORSE – “It’s really cool. I love the wings and the fact that you can sit the person on the horse. I wish the horses legs moved, but that doesn’t bother me much. I love it!”

DEL’S FOOD TRUCK – “Leave me alone, Daddy! I’m playing with the food truck!”

Consider that a win, Playmobil. Well done.

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Alex Secker is a writer/director/editor. His debut feature film, the micro-budget thriller Follow the Crows, won Best Independent Film at the Global Film Festival Awards, while his stage-play, The Door, won the People’s Choice Award at the 2017 Swinge Festival.


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