Monday, August 10, 2009

Traditional Foal Shortage?

Still having some time management issues here. I didn’t realize how far behind last week’s crazy work schedule put me. And that rambly post I had been working on all weekend was, frankly, an unpublishable mess. Something I wasn’t in any mood to rewrite last night, especially since I had to be up early this morning for the BreyerFest Reservation Roulette.

So I’ll just spread out what I was attempting to cover in that one post over the course of the week. They’ll be a little shorter than average, but they’ll have the added benefit of actually making sense. And today’s topic shall be… Traditional Foals!

I was originally going to present some research to show you all that there was a dire shortage of Traditional Foal Molds, and that Reeves should do something about it. This was partly in response to a comment about the need for another Draft Horse Foal (something I agree with, wholeheartedly) and also an observation made in light of the recent Fun Foal releases.

The funny thing is that I did the research, crunched the numbers, and guess what? There isn’t a shortage, or at least, there isn’t a significant percentage difference when compared to the Classics or Stablemates line. Foals comprise about 11 to 13% of all three lines, depending on how you calculate it.

For the record, there are approximately 17 different Traditional Foal molds - 16 if you discount the Proud Arabian Foal, who is currently unavailable, or 18 if you want to include the Quarter Horse Yearling:

Action Stock Horse Foal
Clydesdale Foal
Family Arabian Foal
Grazing Foal
Le Fire
Lying Down Foal
Phantom Wings
Proud Arabian Foal
Quarter Horse Yearling
Running Foal
Saddlebred Weanling
Scratching Foal
Sea Star
Standing Stock Horse Foal
Suckling Foal

I haven’t included the Connoisseur Foal Gilen yet, since he’s still technically unreleased, and his status as a production plastic mold is still uncertain. (I did not include any exclusively non-plastic molds in my original calculations of the Traditional line anyway, precisely for that reason.)

There were several factors that skewed my perception of the Foal situation. First and foremost was that we’ve had number of new Classics and Stablemates Foal molds that have come out recently. Since 1997, we’ve had six new Stablemates Foals, four Classics, but only three Traditionals (Amber, Ashley and Le Fire.)

Second, there may be more Classics and Stablemates molds historically, but some of those molds were created to replace the Hagen-Renaker molds that are now unavailable for production: the Classic Arabian, Quarter Horse and Mustang Foals, and the G1 Thoroughbred Standing and Lying Down Foals. If you just count the molds that are available, the percentages fall back in line with the Traditionals.

Third, most of the Traditional Foal molds are quite old. Prior to Amber and Ashley, the next youngest Foal mold is the Action Stock Horse Foal, who was released in 1984 - 13 years earlier! While they still retain a lot of sentimental charm, they’re from another time period altogether, both historically and artistically. There have been only three new Foal molds in the modern, post-Chicago era.

Actually, the age issue may be argument enough for more Foal molds. While the Clydesdale Foal is still as cute as he ever was, I’m not so sure he really "belongs" with Wixom, any more than the Family Arabian Foal would go with the new Arabian Cross Mare. These foals were designed for a different time, and a different line.

So, here’s hoping that Gilen is a harbinger of things to come.


Berni Mentesana said...

What about the Rough Coat SHF? Did I miss that one on your list?

DrSteggy said...

Its on the list as Phantom Wings