IOW: COP flexes Monday Might

Upstanding citizens of Champaign-Urbana! Here is a super-late but super-fun “Image of the Week” that will bring you Labor Day cheer and video-making inspiration! We should begin, speaking of “super late,” by wishing well that portion of our C-U Blogfidential population who forced themselves to stay awake through overnight Thursday so they could participate in “Force Friday,” a shopping event orchestrated by Lucasfilm, Disney, licensors, and retailers to make an instant mint off the nationwide debut of STAR WARS collectibles. Coincidentally, we slumbered peacefully through those very same wee hours at the Secret MICRO-FILM Headquarters with visions of classic Eighties action figure commercials dancing in our heads. They somewhat resembled the mash-up madness of Kontraband’s kick-ass toy line, “Robot Cop,” as seen in the spot embedded below. What, you don’t remember “Robot Cop,” fellow middle agers? We can thank Champaign illustrator Matt Wiley, a staff media artist at Taylor Studios in Rantoul and contributing poster and title designer for Pens to Lens, who invented this retro sales nugget on a whim. “Starring” the T-800 from THE TERMINATOR and bounty hunter Bossk from THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK who battle over real-world precious cargo – in this case, their young humans’ SunnyD(elight) orange drink – ROBOT COP features hand acting by Taylor colleagues Jason Thorn and Jordan Bidner, voice work by P2L cohorts Matt Shivers, Justin Klett, and Breelyn Mehrtens, and Wiley performing his best “lazy a capellaBasil Poledouris. Just as entertaining is the ROBOT COP how-to video if that saved-to-VHS, Reagan-era aesthetic is your bag, and it also appears here for perusal and study. Pretty rad!

~ Jason Pankoke

p.s. We sincerely beg Wiley to make one more toy faux-mercial for the Eighties sci-fi epic that never was until about four months ago, KUNG FURY, if for no other reason than to be gloriously more meta than meta. Besides, he may not be a robot but he is most definitely a cop and he’s damn good at his job. That’s worth a little merchandising homage, yes?

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