Author Topic: 4239 puppet theater  (Read 6829 times)

Offline playmo1989

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2010, 15:37:53 »
I did not say it's not on the market. Read what I said. I said:

I think from that it's pretty clear that as I was unable to get it locally at 15% discount I decided to get it direct from Playmobil instead.

oh ok i understand it now ;)
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Offline Elric

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2010, 21:59:25 »
Still can't find my d&%m charger.  I bet it's in the sea of toys for the kids.  Had an idea for the theater.  Rock band diorama.  Guitars, drums, and amps.

Offline Martin Milner

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2010, 17:49:04 »
I thought I'd help Elric out with some pictures:

The audience hush, the lights go down, and the curtains are ready to open.

Scene 1: Outdoors (the woods, the highway, the fields etc.)

Scene 2: Indoors (Grandma's cottage?)

From behind, with cardboard "curtains" holding the props and characters safely during transit.

Scenery reversed for a stage rehearsal.

Curtains removed, left side with the robber, boy and Kasper.

Right side, Policeman, girl and Grandma.

On stage, Policeman, robber and Kasper.

On stage, girl, boy and Grandma.

The actors line up to take a bow.

The sound box (I hid it under the stage) plays two different tunes, a laughter track (though it sounded more like general crowd noise to me), and a clapping/applause track.

The take-along theatre is beautifully produced, with two possible scenes (outdoors and indoors), six characters (seven including the crocodile), several props and a couple of stage-dressing items.

I was suprised to find no booklet included to explain who the characters are and what play they act out, but on further reading on Wikipedia I discovered that the characters are well known in Germany, so presumably no explanation was thought necessary. They are not well known in the the USA or UK (or other European countries?), and I feel that some explanation might help sales outside Europe.

The characters are (and German Playmofriends please correct me if this is wrong):

Kasper the Clown, narrator (?), hero, and the central character. He is a trickster, using his wits and repartee to thwart his opponents and make fun of (and with) his friends.

Seppel (or Hansel or Joey?) the boy, Kasper's good friend, with whom boys in the audience can identify. He is easygoing, strong, and occasionally clever.

Gretel the girl, Kasper's other good friend, with whom girls in the audience can identify. She is helpful, clever and practical. She helps balance Kasper and Seppel's wilder schemes.

These three get up to various adventures together.

Grandma, who provides calm advice, words of wisdom, and a haven of security. She also teaches good manners.

The Policeman, who represents authority, enforces the laws of the land, and catches the robber.

The Crocodile, a mindless eating machine and source of danger.

The Robber, strong but stupid, greedy and lazy, who is always caught to show that wrongdoing never goes unpunished

There are other characters possible who have not been included here, but could easily be added from one's own collection:

The King, the ultimate authority, and dispenser of good things

The Witch, evil, crafty, stubbron, easily annoyed, and able to cast spells.

The Wizard, who casts spells for good, but is pompous. Kasper often makes fun of him.

The Devil, the ultimate evil who motivates the witch and the robber, and gives them missions.

The reason there is no storybook included appears to be that Kasper plays vary from time to time, region to region, and country to country, so there is no single story to tell. The puppeteer makes up the story as s/he goes along, dependign on audience reaction and interaction. 

In England the character of Kasper has transformed into Punch, aka Punchinello or Pulchinelle in other counties. Punch is slightly meaner than Kasper, using his slapstick to hit the other characters, and sometimes the villain of the piece. Punch and Judy shows were popular from the time they were first reported by Samuel Peyps right up until WW2 (an Italian Punch and Judy man appears in one Just William story around then time of WW2).  They are less common now, but may still be found at seaside resorts.

I think this theatre has a lot of potential and is a beautifully designed set. For those families that enjoy spending family time together, the parents and children acting out various plays for and with each other, it could be marvellous. Whether they form a large enough market for this set to sell in good numbers is my worry, with all the distractions of TV, video games and the internet.

I would love to see follow up sets (maybe as DS add-ons) providing other characters and scenery for other plays such as Pantomimes, but these are not strictly necessary, as the basic theatre provides a great backdrop for any play that imaginative children want to act out.

Offline AndrewL

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2010, 18:31:12 »
Hi Martin,

Fantastic photos and a great addition to Elric's original post!

I agree, this could be a great set for families interested in acting out plays and so forth.

And most of the figures and their accessories (pikelhaub!) have some great potential for customising.

Many thanks, Martin!



Offline skypurr

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2010, 22:35:27 »
Great photos   :wow: and thanks for the explanation of who is who Martin.  :clap:
I saw one of these the other day in a local toyshop and tried to persuade my eldest boy that he'd like it for his birthday, but perhaps I can persuade him that it would be good for my birthday (that comes before his!)

Elaine  :)
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Offline Wolf Knight

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #15 on: August 22, 2010, 11:14:13 »
Great photos and explaning Martin! Now I am certain I will not buy tis set but I would like to get hold of the clown and the robber! Thank goodness for ebay!!

Offline flatcat

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #16 on: August 22, 2010, 11:14:32 »
Great pics, Martin!

This sure looks a great set with those Klickies, and I like the way they slot into the sides when not in play so they don't rattle about.

Damo :)

Offline bonniebeth

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #17 on: August 22, 2010, 16:08:08 »
Yes, thank you very much for sharing the history behind this set. It's all news to me. I'll have to do some research on it myself. Now it all makes a little more sense why they have these seemingly random characters all together.
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Offline Elric

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #18 on: August 23, 2010, 00:39:56 »
Thanks for taking up my slack on this Martin.  I found my charger but your pics and descriptions are alot better than mine.   :)

Offline Mina

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Re: 4239 puppet theater
« Reply #19 on: August 24, 2010, 12:54:20 »
Thanks for these nice pics :) I've got it for last Christmas, and I really love this set... above all, I was really impressed by the quality of the background, the cardboard isn't cheap at all... and it makes nice background for lil' pics of characters...

Anyway, the whole set is really nice, it's one of my top 20 sets ever :)
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