With Captain Marvel tracking for a $120-$140 million opening and the highest Fandango advance ticket sales since Avengers: Infinity War, merchandise is already hitting shelves everywhere, with costumes and shirts designed to make the wearer look like heroine Carol Danvers, Hasbro action figures and dolls, and plush renditions of her adorable and deadly feline sidekick Goose the cat. But riddle me this, true believers (and yes, I know I'm mixing my comic company metaphors): when is an official piece of movie merchandise not an official piece of movie merchandise?
Answer: when a crucial prop in the movie is actually a licensed item from a completely different property and company. And in the case of Captain Marvel, which goes back to the '90s and shows us that characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe are collectors of licensed products just like us, there's a particular hunk o' tin that plays a key role at a crucial moment, and don't you dare call it jumping the shark. Behold your first official look:
That's right. It's a Fonzie lunchbox.
So why is a '70s show referenced in a '90s-set movie? Think about what 29-ish Carol Danvers might have enjoyed as a child, back when she was first taking lunch to school. You can already tell she has an affinity for motorcycles and leather jackets, so where might that have originated? It all comes back to Happy Days, and we do have to add that some of the escape pods in Captain Marvel aren't far off from the favored transports of Mork from Ork.
The Fonzie tin tote lunchbox is a Bif Bang Pow! product that's an Entertainment Earth exclusive, and official Happy Days product licensed from CBS Consumer Products, described thusly:
"Now totally cool again and completely licensed, this sensational Happy Days Tin Tote measures 8-inches wide x 6 1/2-inches tall x 4-inches deep. It has a red plastic handle and features stylized artwork of "The Fonz" posing with his motorcycle on the front. Along with images of Fonzie, Richie, and Potsie on one side, there's other iconic Arnold's imagery, including a diner scene on the back. As if that isn't cool enough, this classic tin tote is featured in the film Captain Marvel!"
You'll have to provide your own Thermos, or the...other thing, which we won't spoil, that this lunchbox is used to transport onscreen. And generations in your household can bond, as the oldsters who ask "What's Captain Marvel?" can hear "What's Happy Days?" in response, and everybody can bond over Samuel L. Jackson's "Three little Fonzies" line in Pulp Fiction.
"We’ve had success, recreated and sold thousands of units of three other classic lunchboxes since 2013 - KISS, Battlestar Galactica, and The Six Million Dollar Man," says Jason Labowitz, Managing Partner, Bif Bang Pow!. "Since licensors usually don’t have visual archives that date back to the 1970s, our method is that we order a few rusty lunchboxes from eBay, then have our artists scan and meticulously clean-up and restore the artwork until it’s ready for reproduction." The fact that Disney happened to like this too is just happy cosmic synergy -- though it appears in their movie, this is not in any way a Disney product.
This one recommended for ages 14 and up, probably because of all the times when I was eight that I, and kids like me, threatened to beat somebody in the head with one. Don't do that.
Luke Y. Thompson - Contributor
Original Article: Forbes