Funtastic brought out a swag of coloring and activity books back in 2002 for the first movie - the usual mix of jumbo coloring pads, sticker books and such like, but also including a tattoo book and a paint-with-water book. Sadly, the rather disappointing art they decided to use last time really overshadowed any high points that the format may have provided.
For "Spider-Man 2", Funtastic is back with new art and even more nifty formats. As your devoted reviewer, I headed down to my local Warehouse (the NZ equivalent of Wal-Mart) and picked up one of each of the different books I can find. And here they are. Note that Funtastic appears to be an Australian company. I'm not sure if these books will make it to the US If they don't, then please accept my condolences. If you get something else instead, please drop me a line and let me know...
A hefty NZ$16.99 (US$10.20) will score you this stamp set, featuring a dual- color ink pad (red/blue, naturally). There's a box of four 3" non-toxic (but don't eat 'em anyway) pencils, featuring red, pale blue, green and purple. The pale blue is a bit weird, definitely not Spidey blue! There's a 3.5" x 11" stamper activity book, which is tall and skinny. There are 24 pages with a few activity bits, and some spaces to stamp. The paper in the activity book is clean white, not newsprint, and the printing is monochrome red.
Naturally, there are also 15 stamps... all of Spidey, or Spidey logos. Except for one small stamp, which is a tiny picture of Doc Ock, with a "Doc Ock" logo. Now, I mentioned before that Doc Ock in all these books is drawn with major league heavy inking, compared to Spidey's clean outlines. This is no exception... and when shrunk down and made into a stamp, what you get is a blob with the words "Doc Ock" stuck off to one side. Very, very lame. You can stamp Spidey all over the place, color him in with pale blue... but there's nobody else you can stamp in the scene. Plus, the scene is apparantly 3" wide and 11" tall, which is a crazy shape.
This box has not been thought out at all. It looks pretty, and is all set in a nice plastic inner, but in practice, it could have been so much better with a little bit of thought. I can just imagine the manufacturers looking at the Doc Ock stamp when the first one came out of the run... I can just see them looking at it, realising it's crap, but deciding they had no time to "take it back to formula". Hence, this messed up thing hits the shelves.
Nice concept, but poor execution. For that kind of money, I expect a lot better. This is a disappointment. One and a half webs.