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Discussion Starter #1
JL seems different...whats going on in johnny world??? By now I figured they would be on the 10th issue of Wacky Winners and I would finally be able to pick up a Vandal and Muscle Bug to put in the case...Oh well times change. I'm sure they've done some awesome cars lately I just don't know about them right?



But plastic bases? really?


And where the heck is midtown????:wave:
 

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Silent but Deadly
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While you were gone...

Yeah, things have changed. It started to get goofy when RC2 bought up the Playing Mantis line, and that's when I began to lose that drive for little diecasts (except for the Trek stuff, of course) Now, I don't even look at the cars unless I'm cutting through on my way to get coffee... Tomy is the label I see on the cards now.

Haven't seen Midtown, Goosechicken, Mangodance, RobDog, etc, in a very long time. I peek in occasionally...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Its almost like coming home from a long trip and all that's left in your town is a few tumble weeds...and somebody whistling in the background...and maybe an old guy with one string on his banjo sittin on a dusty wood box....and a half buried topper bugbomb in the dirt road....
 

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Perhaps this recent thread will re-orient you: http://www.hobbytalk.com/bbs1/showthread.php?t=363142 and give you some hope. Sadly, the changes in ownership of the Johnny Lightning brand have not been very positive events for collectors. The JL brand had such a loyal following - a captive market. So many HT board members have expressed their disappointment and have walked away from the brand. Logical thought would be that given the advent of the GreenLight and M2 Machines lines coming to market, efforts to ramp up the JL line would take place in order to stay ahead, or at least compete in the diecast market. But it seems that the business objectives of RC2/Learning Curve and then Tomy were to acquire other brand names: Thomas the Train, etc. The JL brand has become just a small (miniscule) cog in the corporate machine. :cry:
 

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JL has had its share of nice cars thrown into the mix. But inconsistency has become a byword in the JL circles...and that's putting it kindly.

Members have come and gone here, even owners of the line have come and gone. Some will put all this under the heading of progress, or business, or even toss out a cliche or three on how nothing good lasts forever. And this would all be true, but one must understand that the truth here has more facets than the tumble weed you aptly mentioned. And the topper half buried in the dirt is precisely where JL has been, half afloat, half buried, half alive.

We've seen bursts of what some have mistakenly called enthusiasm. Even I got my hopes up early on when LC/RC2 looked like they were getting their act together. More interesting designs, more cars finding themselves into retail again...although only in certain areas. Then nothing. Large gaps between releases, bland color schemes with maybe a couple of nicer cars in a release of 12, or maybe one winner out of a 4 car set, back when they were still doing sets. Then no reorders because there are suddenly too many peg warmers left hanging at the local WM, then no retail again. The line is dropped from WM, or is supposedly sitting in a WM warehouse awaiting a reorder that never comes.

These ups and downs have been a numbers game. Some say it has been the only way to keep the failing line alive in the current economy, other times it seems like JL has been used strictly as a tax write off, with it's half hearted bursts of better cars being because they cannot keep writing it off without looking like there have been prosperous bursts relevant enough to keep the line on life support and the loss used again the following year.

So this is the new world of JL, a rotating tool used in a business to offset profit and loss in order to retain more of their revenue.

Now we have Tomy buying the line. And whether this means changes for the better, or just more of the same...well, let me put it this way...Tom Z. From RC2/LC has been retained to oversee the line, and his story is the same as it has been for years. There is no bright change in his demeanor, no, "Hey, now I have a larger budget for the line." Budgetary constraints being something he has publically stated was keeping the line from prospering during the RC2 years. Instead, we are simply told it is business as usual, and that if line becomes too much of a detriment, it will be dropped entirely.

But the question remains, since the line has done so poorly over the years, why RC2 would allow Tom to keep running with it and not have pulled the plug half a dozen times already. Is it because they have so much faith in Tom? Because they owe him some huge favors? Because he has some controling factor in the company? None of this is true for any corporation, or their chief designers of any line that is failing.

Mysterious? Business as usual? And recently Tom has stated that, being the US designer in charge of bringing Tomicas back to the states, that he cannot wait to do for Tomica what he he has done for JL.

Confusing?

This is business as usual, pal, so deal with it or get out of the lifeboat.
 

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Wow! Badman! Man, believe it or not, I was thinking about you a few months ago, wondering how you've been! Now here you are. I can't add anything to what other's have posted here. They have summed it up quite nicely. You know, I still come here regularly, even though I haven't bought a JL in at least two years. With the decline of the brand, my interest in collecting has waned. Collecting used to be fun. It used to be exciting. Now there isn't anything about the Johnny Lightning brand that causes me to get excited. Everything is just so-so.
 

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Do for Tomy what he did for JL...I don't wish that on any company...seriously, i own close to 750 jl's, plastic and metal, i will support jl until the last car, finding a white still gives me that thrill, bit no 2.0 until october, really, bye bye 2.0..and forever used to be every month like clockwork, nop, whenever now, and QC is in the toilet, i bought a sealed case of forever64 a few sets back and got 12 of the same car...nice job...TomiZa..
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Wow! Badman! Man, believe it or not, I was thinking about you a few months ago, wondering how you've been! Now here you are. I can't add anything to what other's have posted here. They have summed it up quite nicely. You know, I still come here regularly, even though I haven't bought a JL in at least two years. With the decline of the brand, my interest in collecting has waned. Collecting used to be fun. It used to be exciting. Now there isn't anything about the Johnny Lightning brand that causes me to get excited. Everything is just so-so.
Hey Zeb! Yeah, I got out of collecting for a while when it seemed like everyone was making the same muscle cars over and over...and I love muscle cars but how many chevelles did I really need??? I really miss the uniqueness that JL used to have. Oh well. I have been collecting old redline era stuff and that has brought back the fun again:). :wave:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Are you talking about me???? :freak:

How you been... still racing those crazy little off road things?
Ha ha...nothing wrong with one string:). I haven't really been doing any offroad racing in about 3 years. My buggy has been sitting in the trailer broken from my last race way back then... I'm thinking about coming out of retirement though:).
 

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nobody carries JL anymore hardly. If they do it the same release over and over again(walmart). This latest release with citations and station wagons,,?? really what were they thinking,of course they`ll be peg warmers. Give us GN`s,trans ams,mustangs,vipers,corvettes,camaros,turbo daytona`s,and turbo omni`s and chargers and the products will sell.
 

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nobody carries JL anymore hardly. If they do it the same release over and over again(walmart). This latest release with citations and station wagons,,?? really what were they thinking,of course they`ll be peg warmers. Give us GN`s,trans ams,mustangs,vipers,corvettes,camaros,turbo daytona`s,and turbo omni`s and chargers and the products will sell.
In my area the Citations and station wagons are selling while the JL Vipers and Corvettes are peg warmers. What may be true for your area isn't necessarily how JL's are selling someplace else.
 
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