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  1. #1

    • Waiting for my E-Ticket
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    Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I was at the mall earlier (had an appointment with the Genius Bar at the Apple Store). Stopped in the Disney Store after and practically all the Duffy stuff is gone. All they had were some of the little 8" ones and two 24" ones (which were marked on clearance for $16.99 - almost got one but I really have no room for him so put him back). Haven't checked the Disney Store by me (this was at the one in Tampa) yet but I got a feeling it's probably the same story.

  2. #2

    • Tower of Tower Nut
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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I noticed the same thing at my local Disney store, when I asked the cast member about Duffy she told me the same thing. No more Disney Store Duffy :0(

  3. #3

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I noticed that also




  4. #4

    • Felice Natale!
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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    Can someone get me a big one for $16.99?

  5. #5

    • I love that tiny bear!
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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    No 24" Duffies at my nearest Disney Store; I might try another on Thursday.

    They did have the smaller Sailor Mickey + Sailor Duffy combo plush on discount for $14.99 and I was sorely tempted...but Duffy's nose had some issues and his sailor outfit is still SO CHEAP. It doesn't even have the Mickey symbols on the back, and as we know, it was silkscreened/printed, so I don't see why they couldn't've added those!

    They had the larger Mickey/Duffy plush, but no price tag. Vinylmations were marked down to $7.99. 17" Duffies and 8" Duffies were the same price as always. I bought a few of the latter because they fit the Build-a-Bear Smallfrys clothes and I'm not sure if any of my friends might want one someday if they become unavailable.

  6. #6

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    Is it possible they are trying to keep it exclusive to Disney parks as a marketing ploy, or is he being discontinued?
    "Our greatest natural resource is the minds of our children." - Walter Elias Disney

  7. #7

    • I love that tiny bear!
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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    There are new Duffy Vinylmations supposedly coming out, and he just got a couple new outfits recently. So I don't THINK he is being phased out entirely. At least, I certainly hope not. I don't see why they would discontinue him, versus just reducing the product line. Then again, I don't understand most the things Disney US mechandising does, so who knows?

    Duffy had a run of about 7 months at the Disney Store and I assume he didn't do what Disney wanted, unless they wanted 7 months of slightly-higher exposure. At least the clerk who checked me out today knew who Duffy was.

  8. #8

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I just saw this at my local disney store! I was in checking out the frozen merch when I noticed the duffy wall was completely gone. The cast member told me that duffy just didnt bring in the money they were hoping, and that no one knew him, so they decided he was best for parks only. There were no bears left but I did see some of his outfits- snagged the aviator one for 7.99 and the sailor one for 5.99
    Its bitter-sweet... great deals but then no more duffy :/ I enjoyed seeing his little face around

  9. #9

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I can't see this as anything except WONDERFUL news. The move to Disney Stores was always cheapening and brand damaging, before even bothering to lovingly craft and firmly build an established global Duffy brand. It's a smart move.

    It preserves Duffy's exclusive nature, an essential element of the brand. It also ensures that the bond with Duffy, the Duffy experience is intrinsically tied with and inseparable from the magic of the park experience. It enlivens Duffy with "specialness" and unique, happy memories as a matter of course. It elevates him, as it should all park merchandise, from all the other ubiquitous Disney swag everywhere else in our lives. Good, good.

    On a more practical level, though, it solves very important problems. It allows a higher price point as a premium park-exclusive object. This gives the potential for more creative, cohesive, and carefully crafted products that more accurately reflect the Duffy brand. At its very best (Pirate, Mickey, Hatter?, SULLEY if it had the "feet" from the prototype), the global Disney release has still been more like UniBearsity and not very Duffy. At its worst (China, Mexico, Mother's and Father's Day), it's been considerably lower quality than Build-A-Bear in terms of design, materials, execution and marketing across the board. Pulling out of the Disney Stores, where Duffy never belonged to begin with, is an opportunity to regroup and refocus on establishing Duffy's brand and his unique relationship with the guest/park experience.

    A new creative team can be given better resources and more flexibility to experiment and push boundaries when they're only thinking of park sales. There is no pressure to please everyone; the market is limited to folks who would plan Disney vacations and spend time at Disney parks people who already want to love it as long as you give them something worth caring about. The Stores must operate on economies of scale and broad demographics that are irrelevant to the Duffy brand. The creators who work on Duffy now will be freed from this unrealistic tug of war, and they hopefully will be given a freer budget, timeframe, and creative control by the company.

    My only fear is that it's already too late. They've handled this concept terribly clumsily, twice now. There is something established about Duffy, especially in the US. It is not unthinkable that now he looks to most American Disney fans like a double failure, and they may not find Duffy worth purchasing now even if the creative execution improves. The storybook has already been butchered and gutted of the heartful magic of the Japanese original. There is no more curiosity about Duffy or benefit of the new, of the doubt. They would have to come up with something monumentally amazing. I hope that happens, but I'm not holding my breath.

  10. #10

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I'm with DuffyD here. I've never been crazy about Duffy in the Disney store. He seems much better fitted to the parks. Of course, I live within half an hour of DLR and go there once a week so I'm spoiled. I can see how it gave some exposure to Duffy to those folks who don't have the parks access. It doesn't sound like it was the right kind of exposure or enough of it though.

  11. #11

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    My biggest frustration so far has been the lack of consistency with the entire US Duffy re-launch. There have been glimmers of hope, but overall, it's been a rollercoaster. I'm not sad that he's going away from the Disney stores either, because they didn't bother to invest in the story or the reason for him being there. I went to my local store where they have actually had success with Duffy (especially with international visitors), but even there he's shoved into one display, and not very attractively. They only have the plush bears anymore, and no more costumes or anything else. Also, about the Disney Store in general, I was shocked to discover that they no longer even sell their own movies. I couldn't find a single DVD/blu-ray, or music CD in the entire store. There were toys, and kid's clothes, but little else. It depressed me.

  12. #12

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I understand wanting to keep duffys magic at the parks( and he was handled badly here), but I personally liked having him in reach. Ive never been able to go the park and its definitely not because I dont want to, my family just isnt well off. Also, I live several states away from BOTH parks so its about a 19 hour drive either direction. My family was planning our first trip but because of a new job opportunity with limited hours we had to cancel. So if Duffy is limited to parks only then people like me who love duffy and love disney will never get to see him? It just seems kind of elitist to me that everyone is saying only people who can afford expensive disney vacations deserve to have duffy in thier lives :/

  13. #13

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I totally sympathize, AA1990! I believe Duffy will continue to be available at the Disney Store online, which isn't as fun as picking one out on your own, but at least he's there. While I appreciate some people's opinion that such a thing makes him less exclusive, I figure that people will buy them from the parks and resell them on eBay at a markup anyway, so I'd just as soon Disney gets some money directly from fans who want to buy Duffy at home, instead of there being a middleman to raise prices for those fans.

    I'm about 7 hours away from a Disney park, so I liked having Duffy available too. But in practice, I don't want or need a 17" Duffy (and if I got one, I don't like the waffle fur, so I don't think I'd get one from there anyway). The only unique item I had interest in was the 8" Duffy, and it was fun to be able to pick one up in person on the way home from work one day. (Even if he were available in the parks--and he isn't--I only get to visit a Disney park 1-2 times a year.)

    I do think it's a loss if those smaller bears are discontinued overall (you can buy outfits for them at Build a Bear!) but that's the only thing I'll personally miss. And if Duffy had been at the Disney Store indefinitely, I wouldn't have bought another 8" Duffy until I remembered I need to do another shoebox gift for Operation Christmas Child. So they couldn't even sell to some of the fans who would love to buy something Duffy if they had something that appealed to me.

    Of course, I rarely visit the mall anyway. (Before this Duffy trip, the last time I was there was in June actually....to see Monsters University and buy a Smallfrys outfit for my Duffy from Build a Bear. )

    I am loving the multi-lingual Duffy story for sending in a gift to a random child overseas, though!

    It's too bad that all Disney did was put a display up with a few items (almost all of which could be purchased in the parks and/or online) and expected him to magically sell, I guess? If they would have made any effort to make him special there, things may have been different.

  14. #14

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    The Disney Store near my parents' had I think ALL the Disney Store outfits (engineer, Buzz, Woody, sailor, aviator) marked down substantially. I picked up the aviator jacket/hat for my mom's 12" Duffy (it was marked at $9.99 but rang up at $7.99, which was what most the other outfits were marked as). It's obviously not intended for the 12" bear but I think he manages to pull it off. It's certainly better than the 2011 hoodie he had been in, and my mom loves aviator jackets (and Soarin'!) so it's a win. (Apologies for the poor image quality)



    Oddly, as far as I could tell the Duffy display was still intact at the back of the store. It certainly didn't look any worse than the other displays I'd seen before he was discontinued from the Disney Stores. There was a placard on one of the shelves that said "Sale." The actual "Clearance" section was at the other end of the store.

    I don't THINK he'll be at our Disney Store outlet (the original release wasn't, even though the outlet contains quite a bit of regular Disney Store merchandise). But I'll probably check it out in a couple days just to make sure.

  15. #15

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    Re: Duffy being phased out of Disney Stores?

    I believe Duffy finally leaving the Disney store is the best move for him. He held no real importance in the store and really had no place there. I just fear that the move may have been too late..guess we will find out I guess.

    Eeee-va, love the picture and thanks for letting us know. =)

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