This year John Lammert is doing a far better job of being the Amby. His blog is going from strength to strength focusing on HW more than anything else, but it is still a sensitive role being the MB Amby – and one which does not like being challenged or criticised.
I wrote in a forum post on the MCF that the next Amby report will be all glossy and shiny as per usual as the Amby will not challenge Mattel on any aspect of the Matchbox line even if is crap; and why is there still no social media outlet for the brand (see other recent posts on the matter),
John replied, and I have returned the volley cross court: Thread detail below. What do you think of the conversation? My replies in highlighted blue.
Ah, greetings John. Don’t feel privileged – I like to challenge, so it is not just you.
Er, this is my opinion John – am I not allowed to express as I feel necessary? Am I bovvered? No – could not give a flying toss. Next question please.
Thank you very much
And what gives you that impression? Yes, I have said that I am done with MB before, but 2011 rekindled the flame – so I got back into the swing again. I haven’t said lately that I didn’t want the product…….or have I ? Refresh my memory.
Wunderbar – alles in Ordnung.
Indeed they do. It is not difficult – Corgi can do it.
See, I disagree with this point. In 2011, I embraced the change and design and it got the MB Brand back to how it should be – this was truly a joy to witness and brought back fond memories of my first purchases of Matchbox. It was very smart and classy. The best thing El Segundo had done for many a year and whoever created that brand – bloody well done.
Bloody oath it didn’t work –
Fuck right off with that comment – I feel physically sick that I would share a bed with a fat ginger redneck . You know, he reminds of Big Boss Man from the WWF.
I think you also misjudge this John TBH – you seem to be under the impression that a lot of folk who bitch and complain on the MCF seem to be sole MB collectors. Yet I collect all sorts of diecast. If I see it and I like it I get it. I mix and match as well. I have no clue about how HW work – nor do I actually give a monkey’s toss either. I have no clue about the different segments and such. Nor do I get anything about the Treasure Hunt cars. What I do know is that I like a casting, I get it. I pay very little attention to the packaging, only to see if it is a 2012 edition and that is about it. I do a tilley and just throw the packaging away – meaningless to me.
In the mix goes Bburago, Tomica, Minichamps, AutoArt, Biante, LLedo Vanguards, the list goes on.
(BTW, should anyone want HW blisters, do let me know – I am happy to send these on to you. )
So really John, I do fit in the mould for the collectors who buy what they want and are not exclusive to one brand like MB – methinks the majority here on the MCF do the same.
Indeed – in general, the MB Amby is just Mattel’s Patsy – a block from people challenging Mattel as the gloss and happiness comes through the Chosen One for the year. Please take this to imply the MB Amby role NOT yourself John.
Why the fuck can’t they just man up and answer themselves? Corgi manage to do it…..
No John, again you miss the point. Whilst interacting with Mattel, the MB Amby should also bat for the collector on the same wicket. It is all well and good asking for questions to present to Mattel, but when they come up with piss poor one word answers to important questions, surely that is your que to say “er, guys, wait a min – that answer is a bit shit – what is the deal, and can you give some more info”. And if not, why not? Or would the Amby be afraid of pissing them off?
I think the problem stems from the perceived elite status that the TOF once had. It is a no where near as good as it was – and a lot of good knowledge has left the site. Add to the fact that Adminstor has a very restrictive policy on entry (BTW, his free email policy is flawed completely – you can get on that site with a free email) then of course the MB brand is being kept amongst a few.
The MCF (correct me if I am wrong Brad) does not purport to be a major force in collecting forums, so I have no idea why you are suggesting as such – it is still in its infancy……..there are other more established forums such as Swifty’s and such that are more bedded in and have as bigger rep as TOF.
A metal base possibly, less plastic and normal colour schemes – or is that asking for far too much? The problem also stems at the £1 price point. What can matchbox produce to sell at approx. £1 as this would be considered a pocket money toy. Well, the answer is in the current range. Plastic keeps the cost down. But what if the RRP was £1.25 or £1.50 – would parents still buy these then? More importantly, were the parents of today brought up on diecast? I doubt it very much – I know from first hand experience that the parent does not give a rats arse about the brand – if it looks nice they buy it – they really couldn’t give a toss who made it. And the child does not care either. As long as it rolls, that it is all that matters.
As collectors I am sure we would pay £1.50 for a metal based model – and if parents see that they are getting better VFM as well, I am sure they would buy them. But we are in a global recession and therefore the purse dictates what can be bought.
In a way the collecting community are the architects of their own downfall – want the world but want to pay £1 for it. I disagree that the positive suggestions are lost – they are here for all to see. And reverse the negatives, and you know what the fixes are (ie. less plastic!) But then this raises the question are Mattel going to up the price bracket and get MB hitting into Siku territory….?
Siku is bloody expensive – the product is top notch. In Europe, they shift (well, not ion France as the French are French and he pegs are dominated by Norev and Majorette). People are willing to pay a premo for them. Look at where HW and MB end up – a rotund display with them piled high. Peg space is halved.
Maybe it is time that MB raised the stakes and just became a semi premo product at £1.50/AUD$2.50 – Corgi Toys’ new range is hitting in at £2 and is proving popular. As a parent myself, I would want a half decent product. I have seen the Chinese tut and it is a load of bollocks. I would rather spend an extra quid and get a bit of quality in the mixer.
If Mattel kept a winning formula such as the line in 2011 then there would be nothing to complain about. Problem is John they have fucked up the re-brand. They really did not need to do so. 2011 was really going in the right direction, so why the need to change?
Could not give a toss about the 60th Anniversary models – the core range is all I am interested in. Why not just do what they did in 2002 and stick a logo on the core range? Just Mattel trying to squeeze out every last penny from those willing to pay a premium. And why not? They are a business after all out to make money. So it is fortunate that this line is of no interest as it saves me a few quid.
Bottom line is that Mattel won’t – they are too busy investing in HW. To kill of MB would be one of their most controversial decisions ever and may affect their share price.
Yes, but John, how are you doing this is the one outlet is your blog – how are new collectors directed to it? If you type in Matchbox into Google, the first place that comes up is the matchbox.com website – and we know that there is fuck all in terms of links to the Lamley blog and such there –
Also, via your blog and Farcebook there are about 1100 followers, which is great stuff and quite an achievement for yourself. So congratulations on that. HW has 1.1m followers on FB – Matchbox has a very long – if not unfeasible – way to go to be on an equal footing. Which it should be. But Mattel refuse it airtime.
The Amby role should be there to champion the brand (ok, then….) but also the collector. The Amby should not be a patsy – be a force and make the difference. By questioning some of the answers, it shows that the Amby is working deeper to understand the reasoning behind Mattel’s decisions and therefore give the collector – new and old – some manner of comprehension behind the rationale.
We can – however chances are very slim, unless you come over to Europe – flying to the US&A at the moment is just not an option.