Howe's Transcendental Toybox - Update No. 2
The Complete Guide to 2004-2005 Merchandise

Authors: David J Howe and Arnold T Blumberg
Telos Publishing
RRP: 7.99
ISBN-13: 978 1 8458 3012 0
ISBN-10: 1 84583 012 1
Available 08 January 2007

This second update to the definitive collector's guide to
Doctor Who merchandise covers all the items released in 2004-2005, and also contains updates to the main book, as well as features and interviews with some of the companies who produce the merchandise, and those who buy it...

The second update volume to Howe's Transcendental Toybox includes product descriptions and black and white photographs of the majority of items of Doctor Who merchandise from around the world.

As the new series of Doctor Who has found a new generation of young fans, there are a lot of new items included in this update. However, as I noted in my review of the first update, is there really much call for a book that simply lists all the new Doctor Who merchandise with their RRP which, on the whole, hasn't altered since they were released?

The main book is of interest as old fans can flick through and find the toys they played with when they were younger and see whether their collection is worth anything. This update simply tells you what items you may have missed, or will give you a handy reminder of what you paid when you bought them - if your memory is that bad. Neither of which are of much interest, in my opinion. However, come back in 10 years and price these items up and I'm sure it will make a great book.

With a book like this, where a lot of data is reproduced, proof reading is of the utmost importance. So it was a little worrying to see that there were a few too many errors. These include several missing prices. Surely, as these items were only released recently the standard RRP will be the book price. And then there's the back cover, which states: "and those who who buy it." With mistakes like this I wonder whether there are any more important errors that have slipped through the net.

Then there's the huge advert for Character Options (23 pages) masquerading as a feature. Yes I know that they have produced some great quality toys based on the new TV series, but is this really the right place to champion their efforts? When there are other companies producing merchandise, surely a general feature on Who merchandise would have been more appropriate. This just makes it look like Character Options helped fund the cost of producing this book.

Does anyone really want a book that just lists all the latest toys at their RRPs? Yes, maybe the more anoraky fan base will, but the rest of us "fans" may see this as a bit of a waste of money. At the end of the day it may be cheaper to go to Forbidden Planet's website and type "Doctor Who" in the search engine.

Pete Boomer

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