Inside the Numbers: Hasbro’s Q4 and 2017 Earnings

No matter what you thought of the My Little Pony movie, Hasbro has been satisfied with the revenues coming from MLP. Revenues went up for the fourth quarter and for the year as a whole.

Franchise brands were up 11% in the quarter thanks to growth from Transformers, My Little Pony, Magic: The Gathering, and Monopoly. For the year, Franchise brands were up 10% with Transformers, MLP, Nerf, and Monopoly up for the year. It was Parter Brands that declined 21% in the quarter and 10% for the year in large part due to disappointing Star Wars sales which offset the growth in other brands such as Sesame Street, Marvel, and Disney Descendants.

Both Gaming and Emerging Brands were down for the quarter (-4% and -5%, respectively) and up for the year (10% and 2%, respectively).

Revenue for the company as a whole was off slightly for the quarter and a $296.5M charge as a result of the tax overhaul led to a net loss of $5.3M for the quarter. However, for the first time since 1993, Hasbro had higher sales for the year than Mattel.

Another note of significance was that business slowed in November and December of 2017 thanks in large part to the bankruptcy of Toys R Us.

Little was mentioned about MLP during the conference call apart from this nugget from Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner as it relates to the future of the franchise.

“We obviously have great plans in store over the next number of years to continue My Little Pony’s march in growth and to engage consumers across all elements in the [brand] blueprint,” said Goldner.

This is usually the prelude before Toy Fair NYC where much more about MLP’s future will be described in detail. Hasbro’s Toy Fair Presentation will be on February 16th and while there was no mention of the leaks in the call on Wednesday morning, we’ll see if there is anything more regarding Season Eight, Equestria Girls, and maybe even a second movie.


IDW Solicitations for April 2018

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Solicitations for April are now available. Check out the details for what’s coming after the break.

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Editor’s Note: The first part of this was submitted to us like two months ago, when that group of episodes was leaked via the phone app.  DHN be the animated ghost ship of the damned now.

SU Review: From “Dewey Wins” to “Kevin Party”

We’re going to have to go rapid fire with these six episodes given that they arc around Steven and Connie and involve many a shakeup to the status quo.

In “Dewey Wins”, Steven tries to walk Connie home, but Connie is upset that Steven gave himself up to Homeworld after promising he and Connie would fight together. Steven wants to brush off his experience in Homeworld as no big deal, but that is not going to materialize. Connie and Lion leave and the former will not return texts for the time being. Sadie is upset that Lars is gone (so are her parents). Meanwhile, the residents of Beach City do what every educated populace does apart from Ponyville, and that’s blame the mayor for the gem invasions. They even nominated Nanefua as a challenger to Mayor Dewey. Steven tries to help Mayor Dewey, but it’s all to no avail as Dewey withdraws and Steven realizes that Connie feels the same way that he does now about Dewey.

Sensing that Steven is depressed and not knowing exactly why, Greg and the Gems go on a “Gemcation” to a “cool ranch house” (since Greg is still rich) with unusable amenities and a three-foot snake. However, all Steven want to do is await a reply from Connie to his texts. He finally confides in that to Greg and the Gems and realizes he gets no bars by the house. They go up on a cliff to regain reception, and still no word from Connie.

Back home, Steven gets a video call from Peridot. She and Lapis wondered how Steven was doing. Steven tells them and Lapis goes into panic mode and wants to flee. Peridot doesn’t want to (and neither does Pumpkin), but she can’t muster up the courage to do so because she mught update Lapis who has been through a lot. Peridot finally does confess to Lapis that she doesn’t want to leave Earth and wants to fight, but Lapis does not want to get caught up in another war and leaves—“Raising the Barn” with her.

So Peridot and Steven are depressed because both have seemingly lost a friend. Amethyst tries to cheer both up when they go “Back to the Kindergarten”. They try to grow sunflowers in the hopes that something good can grow from the desolate place, but it doesn’t happen. What does happen is that what Peridot thought was a flower was actually a corrupted gem and Smokey Quartz returns to poof it. Steven and Amethyst try to console Peridot that while they could not bring some life into the Kindergarten, they can always try someplace else.

Back to Sadie, she’s stuck at the Donut Shop, but Steven want to invite her to a practice Steven is having with Buck, Jenny, and Sour Cream who just formed a new band. Buck booked a gig for the group who does not have a sound, song, or a band name yet. They go to Sadie’s for inspiration, and Sadie provides that and more after watching horror flicks. Sadie sings a song about being in a dead end job and earns the nickname “Sadie Killer”. She initially declines to join since she has work, but changes her mind—after quitting her job.

Not forgetting that Lion is also missing, Steven spreads fliers when Kevin shows up and invites Steven to a “Kevin Party”. Kevin really want Stevonnie to show up so he can look cool to the rest of his guests. Steven goes once he realizes that Kevin also invited Connie. After seeing Connie (with a new hairdo) and Lion, Steven tries to talk to her (after doing some stuff with Kevin because he doesn’t know better). However, it ends up all awkward until Steven bares out his feelings and say he was sorry for letting her down by surrendering. The two make up and leave with Lion after ignoring Kevin’s request to fuse into Stevonnie.

Well, there is a lot to absorb here as we have several shakeups to the status quo. Lapis has jumped ship after hearing about Steven’s interactions with the Diamonds. Peridot is back with Steven after Lapis took the barn. And Sadie has quit her job and we’ll see where that goes.

It seems like the purpose of these six episodes was to shake things up and shake Steven a bit. While he thinks he can go back to normal, he cannot. Now, the Donut Shop is minus two employees, there’s a new mayor, and Lapis is on the lamb. Steven might have Connie back, but he has to come to terms that his actions had effects on a lot of people and gems—not just Connie. Plus, is there something that Pearl wanted to tell Steven back at the ranch house, but can’t at the moment? There will be more problems for all to face as Season Five moves along at the pace Cartoon Network deems fit. There are lot of issue to deal with.

“Dewey Wins”: C
“Gemcation”: C+
“Raising the Barn”: A-
“Back to the Kindergarten”: A
“Sadie Killer”: A-
“Kevin Party”: B



SU Review: “Lars of the Stars” and “Jungle Moon”

A lot of history and new stuff here. Steven and Connie go through the Lion Warp Zone to visit Lars who has commandeered Emerald’s ship with the Off-Colors. Lars is more self-confident than ever and the off-colors are also serving a purpose as they try to head for Earth. Lars’s joy is briefly short-lived as he finds out Sadie is having fun with the Cool Kids and their new band. Steven and Connie talk him out of his funk as they tell him that Sadie is not doing this to hurt him.

As Emerald approaches, Steven and Connie fuse to form Stevonnie and are prepared to fight. They take the fighter jet inside the Sun Incinerator and try to disable Emerald’s blasters, but they are shot down into a “Jungle Moon.”

Stevonnie spends most of the episode fending for themselves absent a way to contact Lars (for the moment), but end up having a diamond dream and we get our very first appearance of Pink Diamond in the dream. That was the wham in this episode and we’ll soon find out more once Cartoon Network decides to announce new episodes. Oh, and Lars does find Stevonnie and will get them home.

It’s best to review these episodes together, but there is some history here. This is the first time we don’t see Steven by himself and the first time Stevonnie has fused for more than a day (and can grow facial hair). Of course, we get our first glimpse of Pink Diamond and she seems kind of bratty at first, especially towards Yellow. Recall, Earth was supposed to be Pink’s colony and she wanted to capture the humans to put in her zoo. She, of course, was ambused and shattered by Rose Quartz.

We’re sure to get some more secrets of Pink Diamond, again, when Cartoon Network decides to air new episodes. *rolleyes*

Anyway, it is good to see Lars with some purpose for once and rallying the off-colors in a quest to return to Earth. It’s something different and also provided some more pieces to the puzzle that is the Diamonds. Both episodes worked brilliantly.

GRADE (both episodes):  A


Steven Universe 512 – Jungle Moon Episode Guide


512 – “Jungle Moon”

Written by: Miki Brewster, Jeff Liu
After getting shot down, Stevonnie crash lands on a strange vegetative plant. With no contact to Lars and the Off Colors or any access to gem related technology, Stevonnie must fend for themself in the meantime.

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511 – “Lars of the Stars”

Written by: Lamar Abrams, Lauren Zuke
Steven and Connie travel through Lion’s mane so that they can rescue Lars. When they reach the other side, they discover that Lars and the Off Color gems have stolen a spaceship from Emerald (voiced by Jinkx Monsoon) and are now on the run from their pursuers.

Direct Video

IDW Solicitations for March 2018

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Solicitations for the month of March are now available. Check out what IDW is bringing after the break.

Read more →

Steven Universe 506 – Gemcation Episode Guide


506 – “Gemcation”

Written by: Madeline Queripel, Lauren Zuke
Greg and the Gems take Steven on vacation to help him relax.

Direct Video