Hastings Thread v2.0

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  • #2806
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    Stopped at the Waxahachie, TX location of Hastings today and picked up the K-9 bobblehead figure. The base is really sturdy feeling, and the head and tail feel like they’d snap off if even the smallest amount of pressure were put on them.

    I believe this is the first bobblehead that I’ve ever bought. I’ve never had the desire to own one before, mainly because they’re stupid as hell. And I thought the big bobblehead ‘boom’ happened in the late ’90s, who knew something so idiotic and fad-ish would still be on the store shelves today. The K-9 is by Bif Bang Pow, who have made a bunch of Venture Brothers bobbleheads. I would hope they’d have something else to fall back on when people realize how goofy their product really is.

    Anyhoodle, enough about badmouthing bobbleheads (I could go on for several paragraphs). The main reason I went to Hastings was because I really wanted one of those TARDIS light strings. And of course, they didn’t have any.

    #2807
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    It’s not at Hastings, but at a Books-A-Million they had salt and pepper shakers that were – brace yourself – a black Dalek and a TARDIS. I was considering getting it for my sister, but I don’t quite like the arrangement. I’d personally like a black Dalek paired with a white Dalek (from Rememberance of the Daleks). Maybe throw in a gray Special Weapons Dalek in case you want some other seasoning on the table with it. Just in case you want some seasoned salt in its own shaker, or in my case, some Tony’s Creole Seasoning.

    #2808
    ubikuberalles
    ubikuberalles
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    So what spice would you use in a TARDIS shaker?

    Thyme?

    /rim shot

    #2809
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    Oooh, looks like I owe you one smack on the noggin for that one. With a Time Magazine, to keep with the theme.

    Hit the Hastings over in Longview, TX today after going to Shreveport to pick up my sister and two of her kids. They didn’t have much that I wanted. They did have two different kinds of Doctor Who lamps, though. I guess they were different, I didn’t look too closely at them since I think themed lamps like these kinds pretty much belong in children’s rooms, I’m too old for that kind of thing.

    Also checked out a Books-A-Million in the Port of Shreve, and was tempted to get the Doctor Who TARDIS cookie jar, even though I now have a nice sealed container for such comestibles. It’s just that I first started seeing it online for something like $70, then in Hastings locations for around $40, and now they’re something like $25.99. But I don’t eat cookies very often, which is why I still can’t pull the trigger. The clear sealed container I have is still a third full of cookies from probably February or so. I have to be in the right frame of mind for cookies. With cake however, any time is cake time.

    A few other things I haven’t seen at a Hastings yet but have now spotted at a Books-A-Million… a TARDIS bath robe, TARDIS themed knit caps. and a 50th Anniversary branded version of Yahtzee, but with Weeping Angels and Cybermen and such on the dice.

    #2810
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    After going out of town on a flea market jaunt that was thoroughly unproductive, I went to the Greenville, TX Hastings to check them out. All the Doctor Who merch they had was a single Doctor figure with the melty Flesh face, and some kind of Lego compatible thing which I didn’t bother looking at too closely. Can’t say I was too impressed with their selection. I’m actually wondering if that location will even be there in a couple years time. The Denton store is gone, and a hell of a long time ago I drove past a store in Gatesville, TX (which I was in too much of a hurry to stop at) and upon revisiting the location a few weeks back found only a Big Lots there. Stores like theirs that focus on physical media like books and DVDs don’t stand much of a chance of surviving in the future, the only thing that separates them from other stores are things like action figures and such. And in a few years, you’ll be able to buy a 3D printer and download figures and make them just as easily as you can download books and movies now.

    #2811

    @Steve W wrote:

    you’ll be able to buy a 3D printer and download figures and make them just as easily as you can download books and movies now.

    Curses! You’ve seen through my cunning plan. 😈 That being said, paint jobs are where the rubber will meet the road in that product category, 3D printing or no.

    #2812
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    You can already pick up a basic 3D printer for home use for about $1200 right now. I’d love to fool around with something like that but I can’t stand the smell of burning plastic, I’d have to keep the thing outside.

    #2813
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    Last Saturday I went flea market shopping in northeast Texas, and I went to the Paris, TX location of Hastings while I was there. And they had gone out of business. I visited the store for the first time around six months ago, now they’re gone. That sucked. My first instinct was to pull over and check Google Maps and see if they moved, but the logical part of my brain told me there was no point. Oh well. On my way back home I did go through Greenville and stop at their Hastings, and I’m wondering how long that one’s going to be there. It doesn’t look like anybody’s straightened up the store since the last time I went. The last time I stopped there I saw the Pacific Rim Jaeger figures for sale, but the movie hadn’t come out yet. Now that I’ve seen it twice I’d love to get a Gypsy Danger figure, but all theirs were sold out except for the three-armed Chinese Jaeger. They still had the same old Doctor Who stuff there, a melty-faced Doctor and a Tennant Sonic Screwdriver, but there were a couple things I didn’t see there before, like the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Monopoly game (is it Monopoly or am I thinking of something else?) and a little light up Matt Smith era sonic screwdriver keychain, which I ended up getting but now can’t use because it’s too big and clunky hanging off my keys.

    I wish there were Hastings stores closer to me, but Sound Warehouse chased them out of Dallas decades ago and they never moved back in once that chain was bought out by Blockbuster and driven into the ground. I have the sinking feeling the whole Hastings chain will be gone in just a few years, since most of their core business revolves around selling things that can now be purchased far easier electronically. I bought a Hastings T-shirt and a couple reusable grocery bags (marked down to 37¢ each) to remember the place by.

    #2814

    Judging by what I saw when I was in northwest Arkansas for Glitchcon, Hastings needs to find a tar pit stat if any hint is going to be left of its existence. From their most recent earnings press release [LINK], a list of closings:

    Store closed in Paris, TX, in June
    Store closed in Jacksonville, AR in June
    Store closed in Fayetteville, AR in June
    Store closed in Duncan, OK in July
    Store closed in Springdale, AR in August

    So I decided to check for similar “execution notices” in other quarterly earnings reports:

    Q1 2013
    Store closed in Huntsville, Texas during April 2013

    Q4 2012
    Store closed in Flagstaff, Arizona on March 15, 2013
    Store closing in McMinnville, Tennessee on March 31, 2013

    Q3 2012
    No closings

    Q2 2012
    Store closed in Denton, TX on August 9, 2012

    Q1 2012
    Store closed in Joplin, Missouri on March 21, 2012

    Q4 2011
    Store closed in Cordova, Tennessee on December 9, 2011.
    Store closed in Topeka, Kansas on January 21, 2012.
    Store closed in Albuquerque, New Mexico on January 23, 2012.
    Store closed in Greeley, Colorado on February 18, 2012

    Q3 2011
    Store closed in Plainview, Texas on August 20, 2011.
    Store closed in Sweetwater, Texas on August 20, 2011

    Q2 2011
    Store closed in Newnan, Georgia on June 14, 2011

    Q1 2011
    Store opened in Nampa, Idaho on April 18, 2011

    Q4 2010
    Store closed in Liberal, Kansas on March 15, 2011

    Q3 2010
    Store closed in Round Rock, Texas on October 15, 2010

    …anyway, you get the idea. Hastings’ physical storefront presence has been shrinking steadily over time, though the most recent quarter of closings seems a bit like a massacre against the steady trickle of one or two closings at a time.

    #2815
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    That Huntsville, TX location is actually their second spot. The old storefront used to be right off the highway, it was a Chinese buffet last time I went by. I remember stopping there a few times passing through on route to my grandmother’s house. I think I picked up my first Red Dwarf Smegazine there, along with other British imports like VIZ (think Mad Magazine but crammed full of toilet humor). Maybe I’d pick up a cassette or two for the trip. Ah, that brings back memories. But those memories are also why I have such loyalty to the place, and now I pretty much feel the need to stop by if I’m going through a town that has one.

    #2816
    ubikuberalles
    ubikuberalles
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    That store in ABQ that closed was only open for about two years so it was an easy decision, I think, to close it. No big whoop since I know of at least two other Hastings within 5 miles of my house. There are probably 7 or 8 in the ABQ metro area.

    The store that was closed for about 20 months now has only been used for the holidays. In the fall it’s a “Halloween” store that sells nothing but Halloween costumes, decorations and other Halloween stuff. They may have it open in the winter for Christmas stuff, I don’t remember. Other then that, it’s empty. Maybe someday it will become a Ace hardware store or a CVS (though CVS tends to open stores across the street from Walgreens).

    I went to Hastings last week for the first time in months and I noticed they rearranged the store a bit. The books and movies sections got smaller and the “junk” sections got bigger. By “junk” I mean they are selling more electronic stuff like iPhone accessories, MP3 players, Portal guns, etc. I also noticed they are selling more musical instruments.

    So they are definitely changing what they are selling and reducing sales of books, music and DVDs for more items that are likely to sell. The question is, are they doing it quickly enough to avoid being shutdown.

    I think they will outlast Barnes & Noble but, perhaps, not by much.

    #2817
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    I went to the Hastings in Tyler, TX, and was surprised to find a good amount of Doctor Who stuff. Not too much as far as figures go, but they had a Van Gogh exploding TARDIS design on a plush throw blanket, a Tom Baker scarf (for $54.99! Ouch! if it were under $30 I might have bought it), assorted knee high Doctor Who socks which are obviously for women and not dudes, DW suspenders, a fez and bowtie combo, a nice looking watch (which has the “Pull to open” type of sign off the front of the TARDIS on the watch face), and other knick-knacks. Only a few figures altogether, though.

    #2818

    Hastings really seems to be trying to get out from under the action figures, I’ve noticed.

    #2819
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    I wish they’d get in more Pacific Rim figures. The one up in Greenville, TX had a bunch of them before the movie’s release, and they were wiped out right after. I did find a Kaiju figure in Tyler, Knifehead, but I don’t care about those, I’d just like to get a Gipsy Danger figure. I can always order them online, but there’s no fun in that. It’s the thrill of finding what you’re hoping for in the wild that’s kept me thrift store shopping for old games and stuff all these years, even though I never come home with anything nowadays.

    #2820
    Steve W
    Steve W
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    It’s not from Hastings, but I went to a Books-A-Million in Lake Charles, LA a couple of days ago and they had a surprisingly large amount of stuff. Not figures exactly, but all sorts of shirts, magnets, and assorted stuff. They had the Tom Baker scarf there for $29.99, almost half the price of Hastings. They also had giant remote controlled Daleks, which was pretty cool, but they were emblazoned with the Union Jack flag design, which sucked. They had a Tennant Doctor suit design T-shirt, but only in a Small. And they had a Matt Smith sonic screwdriver universal remote, which was pretty damn cool (it’s got gesture recognition rather than a load of buttons on the casing) but was $99.99.

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