The holiday season has arrived with all of its mix of chilly weather and warm memories. This year, The Pokémon Center invited me to take a trip down memory lane with an exclusive look at some items from their Winter Wonders 2021 Holiday collection. This collection includes iconic Pokémon including some Kanto favorites with quality that shows the company is still intent on celebrating its 25th Anniversary with a full year of incredible releases. In this two-part piece, I'll give Bleeding Cool's Pokémon fanatics a glimpse at some of the best products from this year's collection to determine which would bring joy to your home for the holidays. In this first part, we'll take a look at items from the Delibird Express, the enamel pin collection, and Winter Wonders clothing.
First up, I was impressed by the packaging of the Delibird Express line. This line of products includes figures that are not so much toys as they are display items. The box itself could also function as a decoration, which was a nice touch considering it was just the boxing. Here's what you get when you open the box.
This is similar in size, quality, and concept to the Haunted Pokémon Village: Creeping Vines Teashop that I reviewed earlier this year. It has the quality of a premium toy but it clearly also functions as a decoration that can be displayed on a shelf or ledge. (Just be careful with placing it if you have cats like I do. This is quite a heavy piece!)
This time around, the concept is hilarious. Harkening back to the original Pokémon Red & Blue games where a sleeping Snorlax blocked the player's way, a Snorlax has now fallen asleep on the tracks of the Delibird Express. Machamp acts as a crossing guard with his top set of arms, using his lower arms in an attempt to move Snorlax's bulky form off the tracks.
The best and funniest touch is the Yamper who, with the best of intentions, offers Snorlax a futile push in the other direction.
All of the items I've been sent by The Pokémon Center have been of the highest quality, but I think it's easy to see that this is the product that would have the most overall use as a holiday item. It's a display item that tells a story featuring iconic Pokémon both new and classic, and it makes for a funny holiday display piece that even those unfamiliar with Pokémon can understand and appreciate.
For many of us, it is either cold or getting cold. The Pokémon Center has a ton of clothing items, but this one is interesting in its subtlety. It uses the Ice-type and Fire-type symbols for a knit headband that would be recognizable to a fellow Pokémon lover while looking like a normal headband to anyone else. The fabric is soft but sturdy, and as someone who lives in a house of various head sizes (my wife being the smallest, with my cranium being quite voluminous), it truly
If you like enamel pins, these are premium. I was surprised by multiple elements of these, with the first being the size. These are very large enamel pins — quite a bit larger than average, which allows for great detail on the artwork. A cute touch is the rubber clasps, which are Pikachu-shaped. That kind of extra touch speaks to the quality that has made me a Pokémon fan since I was a kid and now, decades later, into my adulthood. Even as the biggest pop culture franchise, Pokémon has never coasted on that fame. Instead, it genuinely seems as if they try to outdo themselves with every release.
You can see more of The Pokémon Center's Winter Wonders 2021 Holiday Collection here.