Thursday, May 15, 2014

Hey, It's Smoky!

Feeling a little bit under the weather today; I haven’t had a day off in a while, and I think it’s starting to catch up with me. I did take an extended nap this afternoon, after a quick snack of rice crackers and Vernor’s Ginger Ale, so I’m feeling a bit better now.

Fortunately nothing major - like a last minute Buried Treasure or limited Web Release - happened while I sleeping off whatever came over me this morning. That already happened earlier in the week with the latest batch of Warehouse Finds/Reissues: I came home from work in a less-than-pleasant mood, stayed offline for a while, and when I did log back on - bam! - more Reissues, some of them sold out already.

I did pick up the Missouri Fox Trotter in Palomino, and threw in the Clydesdale Mare I had been mulling over for a while, to make the postage charge more palatable. The original release of the Fox Trotter - Southern Sunrise - was a model I had been interested in acquiring before, but almost all the ones I had seen previous had bland and undistinguished paint jobs with odd pink undertones.

The Reissue looks like it might be more to my liking. The Hagens I found earlier this week were fun and welcome, but nothing beats the New Horse Smell of a freshly unboxed Breyer!

The only Reissue that I missed that bothers me (just a bit) is the Smoky. That was a surprise - both his reissuing, and his popularity. I had not gotten the impression before that he was that much of a "fan favorite" among hobbyists. He’s in an awkward, not-shelf-friendly position, and there haven’t been a huge number of releases of the mold lately.

The most recent was a small group of Florentines raffled off at the Passage to the Pacific Event in California in 2012.

While some of the enthusiasm over his latest release may be more a matter of its scarcity, he does have his fans. I have a couple of friends who are diehard Smoky collectors, and I have a number of them myself: both variations of the original, an unnumbered Ageless Bronze Durango, and the Buckskin Shenandoah without his bald face.

I had at least one Flocked Unicorn at one point, and possibly more, because Bentley Sales had so many of them they were practically giving them away. I’ve long since sold them (cheaply, and with no regrets) because I have issues with Flockies. Those glassy-eyed stares make me shudder.

There is one rare Smoky that I do truly covet: the mold was used to test the original, funky Blue Roan Appaloosa paint job for the Buckshot mold. I don’t know how many were made - not more than a handful, if the case was typical - and the one piece whose location I do know of is very, very beloved by his owner.

From the reference photo floating around, the Smoky Reissue has more shading than the Regular Run, and more neatly airbrushed socks. The first version of the Smoky that the Reissue duplicates, the one with four stockings and dark gray points, tends to have a lot of overspray issues.

If he’s as nice as the photos make him out to be - and so far, that really has been the case with the Reissues - I’ll hold out hope that a few more turn up at BreyerFest.

If not, life goes on.

1 comment:

LostInAn80'sFog said...

So Breyer's come out with attractive reissues on the bear family, the Pacer, and now Smoky. Can Halla be far behind?

If my fading memory is correct, there were 4 -5 of the Buckshot-colored Smoky models - as well as some slightly odd actual Buckshots - found in the Bentley's barrels at that model horse show. Of course, there may have been others that left the factory via other means. Each of the Smokeys' colors and patters was slightly different, looking very much like experiments to determine the perfect mix. All were darker than the Buckshot I acquire right after the model was released, though not necessarily as dark as some of the Buckshots I've seen subsequently. Mine was the freakiest looking of the Buckshot Smokeys as a result of an apparent attempt to incorporate electric blue(!!), which I consider a Sign he was meant to be mine :)