Category Archives: Toys

Mobile Mode

One of the things that has become essential for any website is being compatible with mobile devices. More and more people are using their smart phones as the primary way they view websites and connect to the Internet. When Boulder-Hill.net was first launched this was not necessary. As such, the site has had to play catch up in that aspect.

The site was heavily updated for M.A.S.K. day in 2014, and part of that included a basic mobile mode. Unfortunately, it only included the home page of Boulder-Hill.net, things like the Toys and Figures were not easily accessible. This has always been a bit of a letdown and something I wanted to address.

Recently, I finally had a chance to handle it. With the help of our mysterious technical wizard the site is ready for any mobile visitor. All of the subsections are now accessible, and most have been formatted to run smoothly on a mobile device (the Audio and Video pages still have some work to be done). On top of all that, the site can now be saved in a stand alone app mode on Android and iPhones.

But that’s not all folks! We also have some new goodies. First up is some great photos of the box for the M.A.S.K. RV, Slingshot. That also means that the only toy from Series 2 left without box photos is Volcano, we’re getting closer! While in retrospect a recreational van might not be the coolest toy for a kid, Slingshot was a great vehicle because it had excellent mechanized action and a second vehicle inside.

The other item coming up on the site today is actually kind of rare and interesting. We all know the bright red boxes with beautiful artwork that the toys came packed in. But how did those boxes make it to the toy stores? Kenner had their own shipping boxes, and those boxes were specifically designed for each toy. I recently acquired the shipping box for the Adventure Pack line, and it is now up on the Merchandise section of the site.

With that, this update will wrap up. There is still a stack of toys and merchandise to photograph, so more updates will certainly come.

Christmas Time – The M.A.S.K. Way

Thirty years ago, if you wanted M.A.S.K. toys you couldn’t go on eBay and type in a few key words and have them magically appear in front of you. The options were a lot more limited. Kids could either drag their parents into a toy or department store, or, they could look through one of the big Christmas catalogs that were put out each year. Unfortunately, we can’t still order from them. But as a Christmas treat, I am happy to present the Montgomery Ward Christmas Gifts ’85 catalog M.A.S.K. pages!

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Seeing these catalog pages really makes you wish for a time machine. Who wouldn’t want to sleep in their M.A.S.K. sleeping bag, or eat a bowl of cereal wearing M.A.S.K. pajamas. At least we can enjoy these pictures. With that said, merry Christmas and a happy new year, see you in 2016!

Quick! To The Post Office!

Unfortunately, October was a busy month for my non-M.A.S.K. world. While new stuff came in, nothing new went up. So let’s cover a few things that have been on the to-do list.

First and foremost, to the winners of the giveaway contest, I must apologize. Your prizes are very late! But they are on their way.

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They are now all packed up and ready to go to the post office. Addresses have been blurred to protect everyones secret identity! We wouldn’t want Miles Mayhem or VENOM to find out where people live.

Next up, for some fun stuff, Jason from Agents of M.A.S.K. has created a new video that stars everyones favorite robotic sidekick – T-Bob. The video is a montage of scenes showcasing the moments where T-Bob actually was useful (yes, it happened). The video is up on their YouTube channel. Give it a watch and subscribe to the channel to get notified of future videos.

vlcsnap-2015-11-11-13h32m29s948Finally, we have a bit of a milestone on Boulder-Hill.net today. Thanks to Bill of Matt-Trakker.com I now am able to present photos of the box for everyones favorite mobile command center, Rhino. Rhino was the only Series 1 toy for which Boulder-Hill.net did not have box images. So with these additions I can turn my eye towards acquiring the boxes for the missing Series 2 toys, Slingshot and Volcano.

Sadly, that’s all we have time for today. There’s always more stuff to talk about than time. I promise the end of 2015 will bring more updates and content!

30 Years of M.A.S.K.!

Thirty years ago today, M.A.S.K. made its television today. Flash forward to present day and it seems unlikely that the creators imagined people would still be collecting the toys and watching the show. It seems just as unlikely that this site is six years old. If you visited Boulder-Hill.net last year you probably remember that the M.A.S.K. Day update was a big one, hopefully this year does not disappoint.

MASK Anniversary Backed

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“Prepare to feel the anger of Bulldog!”

The last addition to the Boulder-Hill.net toy archive was Outlaw, way back in September of 2013! Not quite so long ago Bulldog was promised to our visitors, and today we deliver!

If you cannot wait, you can go straight to the images in the Toy area. But if you can hold off let’s give Bulldog an inspection…

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Similar to Rhino, Bulldog is a truck. Bulldog transforms into a tank when in defense mode. Bulldog, and it’s driver – Boris ‘The Czar’ Bushkin – were part of the third wave of M.A.S.K. toys, commonly known as the Racing Series. As such, Boris and Bulldog did not appear in the cartoon until the ten episode second season. One fun thing to note – Bulldog was renamed Bulldoze for the European market.

Now that the history lesson is finished, let’s take a look at the toy itself.

In a world full of orange and purple, Bulldog stands out for being a pale blue. The vehicle has a fair number of moving parts and features, and as such, is prone to getting stuck or broken. The transforming mechanism can be temperamental, the missile is easily lost, and the saw blade can be broken if not careful. All that being said, Bulldog is a very cool addition to the M.A.S.K. universe.

While it is not as big as Rhino, Bulldog is definitely a robust toy. It offers a lot of changes to really alter its appearance when it converts. And, like most toys of the ’80s, the missile fires really far. Bulldog also has a ton of stickers, lending a lot of extra detail to it. All in all, it is a great vehicle and a shame that it showcased so late in the M.A.S.K. timeline.

Next time Bulldog’s driver, Boris Bushkin will be making his debut on Boulder-Hill.net!

Rust in the gears…

The first post of 2015, and in January, barely. There has been a lot of chatter in the M.A.S.K. world lately. Most of you have have probably heard some of it, but for anyone who has not we will do a little run down.

AOM LOGOFirst off, Jason and Wyatt over at Agents of M.A.S.K. have been in the studio and turning out new episodes like they are possessed! The shows are better than ever. This includes an interview with Doug Stone, the man behind the voice of Matt Trakker, Bruce Sato and a bunch of other characters from M.A.S.K. characters. They have also revamped the intro for the show to give 2015 a fresh start, make sure to check out their new codenames and vehicles! As always, if you are a M.A.S.K. fan MASKast is a must-listen-to.

The other big news in the M.A.S.K. community is the speculation of a return or revival of M.A.S.K. in 2015. As many people know, 2015 marks the 30th anniversary of M.A.S.K. – this had already started the thought in many peoples heads that M.A.S.K. might return. With the revivals of lots of other ’80s properties; such as G.I. Joe, Transformers, My Little Pony, Jem and even Rainbow Brite, M.A.S.K. making a return does not seem so far fetched. Add to that that Hasbro (Kenner was purchased by Tonka who was in turn purchased by Hasbro) had applied for a new trademark on M.A.S.K. and it appeared that it was not only fans who were showing an interest in the franchise.

NTF2015And then, a few days ago, word came from a representative at the Nuremberg Toy Fair 2015 that indeed, M.A.S.K. was coming back in the near future! The mention of M.A.S.K. was as brief as it could be – check the link (thanks to Brian for sending it out). Just enough to set the imagination of fans on fire and set us all speculating. Will it be a reissue of the original line? If new designs, will they use the same characters? The same scale? It could be anything! The general reaction from the fan community has been positive. After so long with almost zero new M.A.S.K. property (excepting the 2008 release of Agent Trakker from G.I. Joe) fans seem eager for anything.

In other news, Bill over on Matt-Trakker.com has decided to archive his forums. But do not fear, he is not closing down. Bill stated that he thought there was a better way to facilitate communication among the M.A.S.K. fans of the world. And to that end he has launched an open Facebook group. The old forums will remain for browsing and informational purposes, so do not worry about losing anything on that end.

And last, but certainly not least, what has been happening at Boulder-Hill.net. Obviously, there have not been a lot of updates recently. It happens, unfortunately, but it always gets back up and running. A little while back, a new piece came into the collection, or more accurately, pieces. Two Bulldogs have made their way to Boulder-Hill.net. Neither was in perfect condition, but with a little bit of elbow grease and a good set of screw drivers two sad Bulldogs have combined to form one fantastic Bulldog (for our friends in Europe, Bulldog is better known to them as Bulldoze).

Below are some images of the stages to go from trash to treasue.

That is going to wrap things up for this update. Next time the completed photos of Bulldog will be ready for your viewing pleasure!

As promised, new stuff!

Trying to keep up with everything coming in right now is definitely proving to be a challenge. So instead of saving it all and trying to get it done at once it is going to be spread out across a few updates.

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The most notable addition today is photos of the box for Firecracker, the Series 1 orange pickup truck. Firecracker originally came with Hondo MacLean in his Blaster outfit. The truck and figure have been on the site for some time now, but the box can now be seen on the Toys, Series 1 page.

The other part of this post is to let readers know that a photo for the box for Raven from the European release has been added to the site. The European box was a slightly different shape than the US one, being longer. The box art is also slightly changed – note the missiles being fired in the US version but absent in the European one. It is fun to speculate as to why the change – perhaps regulations about violence in Europe? As some readers might know, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was called Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles in the UK, this may have been a similar type of change.

That is all the time we have to day, but the packages keep arriving, the camera keeps clicking, and the site keeps chugging!

Time for an upgrade

vlcsnap-2014-06-30-23h57m11s148Ever since boulder-hill.net launched the layout for the image galleries has never been wholly satisfactory. The images felt cluttered and the space was very messy. This update is to announce that an upgrade has been implemented that will finally allow the site to remedy that issue. Thanks to our software ninja, we now have the ability to add mini galleries to each section. These mini galleries allow a much cleaner and more fluid experience all across the site.

The new mini galleries take time to set up the change will be done in stages. The first area to undergo changes is the toys section. Rather than go in to a lengthy explanation about the new galleries, please just point your screen to the toy page and check it out yourself. The rest of the site will continue to be retrofitted in the days to come.

Two, for the price of one

One of the stranger toys to come out of the M.A.S.K. production line was definitely the Laser Command set. The set included two ‘vehicles’ that interacted using infrared rays. The M.A.S.K. vehicle was Hornet, but to label it a vehicle is a bit generous. Before transforming, Hornet starts as a crate – not exactly ‘Mobile’. Hornet did convert into a mini-jet, piloted by none other than the leader of the M.A.S.K. team, Matt Trakker.

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VENOMs contribution to this set is Ratfang, a blue station wagon that transforms into… a blue station wagon with “flash cannons”. After looking at Ratfang for a few moments it will probably begin to give people a sense of déjà vu. This is because most of Ratfang is actually just Firecracker. To be precise, the entire front half is exactly the same, just blue. The back half is also fairly similar. The pickup truck bed has been replaced with a full back – this provides a place for wiring, electronics and the very important 9V battery. To face off against Matt Trakker – Ratfang was controlled by Miles Mayhem himself.

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Happy Birthday M.A.S.K.!

Happy Birthday

On September 16th, 1985, children were treated to the very first airing of Mobile Armored Strike Kommand, M.A.S.K. The show has been described as a fusion of G.I. Joe and Transformers – but with its own unique appeal. Today is September 16th, 2013, which means M.A.S.K. is now twenty-eight years old. In that time, fans have been privileged to 75 animated episodes, a myriad of toys, an extensive comic book publication and a variety of other merchandise. To celebrate the birth of M.A.S.K., boulder-hill.net has put together an extensive look at different aspects of M.A.S.K., both past and present. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the show!

 

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