Food For Thought on the Target Qui-Gon Situation

I would like to share a post by my friend Danni, an admin of an outstanding Facebook Pop collecting group called Funko Experts. Odds are you’ve seen the hysteria surrounding a certain holographic Pop that was supposed to be on a certain major retailer’s website, along with the misdirected outrage that followed. Now, I put a post on a certain social media site that got a few people riled up (hey, can’t please everyone, right?), but Danni’s approach is not nearly as harsh as mine was. I hope you’ll all read this – and if you’ve ever been the type to completely snap over one of these toys/collectibles/whatever you feel right calling them; been prone to berate, threaten, swear at, or otherwise mistreat employees of these stores; or just let a sour experience completely skew what is supposed to be a fun hobby – I hope you’ll think about this post and give it a second thought. Thanks again to Danni at Funko Experts.

“Here’s a little story that some of you newer collectors might not know about.

A few years ago, Fugitive Toys did a monthly mystery box called the F-Box. Every month it came out, nobody knew the day or time, it was completely random. They sold out in minutes. The boxes were cheap & awesome. And a special few would receive their special F-Box which was always extremely impressive.

Because of their popularity, they sold out quickly & many wouldn’t get them. Then one particular month, collectors lost their damn minds & took to bitching, moaning & even physically threatening Fugitive & their employees. You know how Fugitive responded to this? They stopped doing their F-Box, made a very public notice about how they won’t be treated this way. And the majority of the collectors, who were decent human beings lost this fun little thing because of a select few whiny little assholes.

Moral of the story. Don’t be a whiny little asshole. It’s a holiday. We are talking about a $15 piece of vinyl. Don’t start petitions, don’t threaten people, don’t try to get employees fired from their jobs. There are real problems in the world. Go take a fight & stand up against something that really matters.

That is all.”


The founder of PPG, I am a long-time action figure collector who started collecting Pops in 2012. I am fan of Star Wars, DC Comics, Alien, music, Royals baseball, KU basketball, and geek culture in general.

40 thoughts on “Food For Thought on the Target Qui-Gon Situation

  • April 17, 2017 at 10:27 pm

    But isn’t this the point of all the anger?

    If Funko killed retailer exclusives, people could simply get whatever figures they want without having to deal with retailer specific hassles. Or at the very least if Funko pulled exclusives from Target, people wouldn’t have to deal with Target. ToysrUs, BoxLunch, Walmart, Walgreens and Hot Topic all had exclusives too and they all didn’t have this issue. Why did Target?

    Don’t get me wrong, I think any anger toward retailer employees is completely unwarranted. Well maybe some of the manager-types, I’ve seen them make very poor decisions on occasion. And yes there are a bajillion other issues that people could be spending their time on fighting rather than stressing over a vinyl toy but isn’t that the point?

    Like you said, collecting is supposed to be fun, and retailers like Target are taking all the fun out of it with some very poor handling of their distribution. People have fun to take their mind off other everyday problems. By telling people to go off and find fun somewhere because a retailer is causing them stress is… unwarranted no? And when that fun is stopped in it’s tracks because a retailer doesn’t give two-figs about it’s customers, well, isn’t anger warranted to get a message across?

    I mean, maybe there are doctors who participate in Doctors without Borders who come home and find out Target messed up their distribution for Qui-Gon. Are you going to tell them their anger toward the retailer who dropped the ball and ruined their fun isn’t justified? And how is that different from an office worker who came home from a tough day to enjoy some Pop hunting? Are you telling me they aren’t justified in getting upset that their hobby is being hurt by a retailer’s bungling? Or a the guy who cleans your office everyday at 2am in the morning, wanting to add Qui-Gon to their collection? He doesn’t deserve to complain a little that a retailer can’t get it’s act together to allow him to enjoy his hobby?

    At the end of the day, I do agree misguided anger is bad. But in this case, Target really doesn’t deserve to get Funko exclusives anymore because of their continued bungling. THAT’S what should be the moral of the story because people trying to have fun with their hobby just can’t have fun when Target is a retailer for their hobby.

    • April 18, 2017 at 9:20 am

      In my experience Target has handled exclusive better than any other big box chain. Sure there was a little hiccup with this one specific pop, seemingly due to mis communication. But thats happens and its life, odds are 90% of the people complaining about this issue still would never have got qui gon jin because it would have sold out before they got to the store or when it went online. If I recall correctly the online listing saying in store only didnt go like until 3AM EST which basically puts a whole time zone out of the running to get it online.

      That said at my local targets (two of them specifically) I have seen every single exclusive they are supposed to carry, available on shelves within a week or two of it being release. Compare that to stores like Walmart, FYE, Walgreens where some of the exlcusives NEVER made it to the store in the first place for what ever reason (golden freddy, Dr.Harleen, Green Goblin, FYE convention exclusives as a whole, and others that just don’t jump out to me right away) And in some of those instances many online orders were cancelled and refunded because of miscommunications between distribution and actual stores. Which ultimately is the same situation, but target just avoided the hassle of cancelling orders and refunding payments by making it “in stores only” until they sort their distribution out to see what available stock they have to post online.

      Sorry for the long winded poorly typed post, i’m still mid coffee and exhausted and don’t mean to attack or come at you personally, I’ve just been seeing a lot of hatred towards Target lately when they have been doing the best they can to get Toys to everyone they can (sadly that includes employees who buy them right away which is a whole separate issue that seems unique to Gamestop and target since employees seem to know the value versus Walmart walgreens etc..)

      • April 25, 2017 at 2:54 pm

        I was standing in front of the store on day it was to come out before target opened. Went to the back was very polite just asking questions. I find out that they arent suppose to selll the pop till sunday the 16th, i show up monday morning calling out of work to get this pop. Just to find out that they sold all the pop late Friday/Saturday. That what has me mad at target and its there managament not normal employees that mess with everything

    • April 18, 2017 at 10:06 pm

      Good point that the other retailers had their figures available, but their character is not as sought after as the Target exclusive nor do they have the amount of locations to supply as Target does. Isn’t part of the “exlusive”ness of an item it’s limited if not rare availability? If it’s still available six months after the release as a lot of the HotTopic figures are then don’t they just become commons and in turn become less desirable? If you need a Target example of this just look at the WWE Roddy Piper, FNAF Foxy or countless StarWars Rey figures that are still around and available and also currently worthless. I also feel that a lot of the complaints were not from people who come home from work and are looking for stress free entertainment. They seemed to fit into the “living in my parents basement” category and need to get some real problems and stop complaining to an employee who is only doing what they have been told to do.

      • April 19, 2017 at 5:44 pm

        amen .

  • April 17, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    Well said. If you don’t get a particular Pop, move on and look for something else (or unfortunately you’ll need to look at secondary markets – the scumbag flippers that is haha). It’s funny how many people say “I HAVE to have this Pop!”. Nobody HAS to have any particular Pop. Anyways, nice post 😀

  • April 17, 2017 at 10:48 pm

    I just want to put something out there: Funko pops and any other Funko product does not come through the Target warehouse system they are shipped from Funko, to the stores. The only warehouse they go to is the online warehouse, which is one specific place, for online sales. I know because I am an employee at one of the two main import warehouses, I have looked, and have never found them in the warehouse.

  • April 17, 2017 at 11:03 pm

    Well, for all the people whining about it not going online, the details specifically said “In-store only”.

    • April 18, 2017 at 7:18 am

      The anger is from the fact that before they page went up, they said the best place to get out will be online

  • April 17, 2017 at 11:15 pm

    My two cents on the matter. It sucks not to get one you really want, I only really wanted the Hooded Luke but missed out. So I went to G.S they didn’t have it, I said thanks and left without spending any money in that store. It’s just that simple. I’m not laying into anyone or trying to get people fired. I live to Funko hunt another day. I went looking for the Qui Gon didn’t find him, but an employee figured out what I was looking for and let me know they’re all gone. But she was so pleasant that we struck up a conversation while she was working and she unpacked 2 life size Groots I asked if she minded if I took one, and she was cool with it less for her to stock. Then while I was looking at movies she came and found me asked if I wanted any of these others she just unpacked and I found a Chase Star Lord, explained to her how it’s going to be a Birthday gift for my nephew and She almost as tickled as me. I’m just saying good karma goes a long way. In the end it’s just a hobby, a fun one, but not life altering. Ok rant over, thanks if you bothered reading all this and happy hunting

  • April 18, 2017 at 12:31 am

    I personally get a kick from watching how ppl overreact to not getting a particular pop. Some ppl need to realize that just because Funko released a certain pop doesn’t mean its their God given right to own one.

    And to the person talking about Pops bringing joy to someone, if not getting one brings that much misery along with it then perhaps its time to find a less stressful hobby.

  • April 18, 2017 at 2:03 am

    I wanted the Qui Gon, but im happy I got at least Luke. So I’m good. I was a lil upset I didnt get him. It’s just a hobbie and its not that serious. Most people got upset cause they couldn’t get it and flip it.

  • April 18, 2017 at 5:35 am

    Their about 10.000 of this guy that makes him a common, so I don’t understand how people don’t have him. Less people have Princess Leia Hoth.

  • April 18, 2017 at 6:42 am

    I can see the lash on both ends of this. I don’t see why everyone who posted something negative is just a “whiner”. I posted my opinion on it and got trolled on instagram for it. It’s not like i signed or started the petition lol. Saw my opinion posted on others feeds berating me for simply stating they need to pull it together since this isn’t the first or second time this has happened. I don’t own a single star wars pop and was treated as a flipper and had to report multiple people for harassing. I think when people re-arrange their lives, regardless if its a 15 dollar vinyl pop, concert tickets, or waiting in line for a Switch, the retailer and manufacturer have a responsibility to inform their consumers and follow through on their own policies, and also be informed about them themselves. It’s really not fair for target to release them on a store to store basis before a nationally published release date. Can’t target be fined for this? Who knows. Sell a DVD before it’s release and its piracy and fineable. All i know is there’s always going to be backlash and for this one I’d say its just. After checking brickseek there were around 15 to purchase in Las Vegas by Monday. Is that a whine worthy or opinion ready? Seems unfair to me. The funny thing is that the people bashing the bashers most likely acquired one lol. Am i a whiner? Sure… we all are or have. Do i need someone running a webpage to tell me that? Or someone who doesn’t even know me throw my post up so i can get harassed for it? Not really. Just like ny qui, robot freddy, zur and now a holograhic, this is another PR nightmare for both companies. Stating that, i also think this is totally intentional. They love baiting us, Increase in chase figures. Funko Shop ‘leaks’, Increase in cost for exclusives and rides. But any type of press is good right. Im done whining now ;-D

  • April 18, 2017 at 6:56 am

    but whereas the F Box cancellation upset people……MANY ppl would probably be happy if Target non longer offered Funko POP exclusives

    ……some ppl go over the top sure……but any adult realizes it’s not just about a $15 toy – it’s about mass disruption and mishandling of a nationwide situation by a major retailer, over a holiday weekend

  • April 18, 2017 at 7:12 am

    I heard plenty of stories of how people “sweet-talked” managers to releasing them Qui Gon a few days early and that’s not cool..especially if it’s against store policy. If it’s not against store policy to do so then it is what it is. I don’t think it’s right to direct anger towards regular employees that are just doing their jobs. I talked to an employee about the madness after missing out on getting one and asked him if anything else cool came off the truck. He told me a Classic NES console came in and I’ve been searching for one since they came out so good things come from being nice….especially now that they’ve discontinued production of the classic unit.

  • April 18, 2017 at 7:41 am

    I was lucky to find Qui Gon but the one I really wanted was Luke, and missed out but still I didn’t cry about it. It’s not the first pop that I’ve missed and it won’t be the last. Yeah it’s frustrating when you go to a retail store or website, and find out that the stock was limited (to only 2) and sold out, but come on ppl it’s only a pop figure; no need to lose your sanity. Even rookie collectors know that some pops are going to be more difficult to obtain.
    I recall when Nintendo first came out with Amiibos, at ToysRus I witnessed a grown man (in tears) yelling, threatening to press charges, and refusing to leave the store because they didn’t have (3) specific amiibos in stock. It was utterly disturbing and embarrassing.
    If anything people should be more upset with flippers, who are the real problem

  • April 18, 2017 at 8:30 am

    I lucked out my wife happened to see a post on instagram ran straight to Target got last one. Only ones I missed was Rey, and clone trooper. I was lucky this time, but have missed out on many in the past. To me you win some you lose some its the thrill of the hunt. Never have threatened to petition or try to get anyone fired. Live with it.

    • April 18, 2017 at 5:14 pm

      Went back to target today they just put out GOTG and I scored a Star Lord chase. Everyone mad at Target I love them right now.

  • April 18, 2017 at 8:53 am

    Perfect. Nothing more needs to be said. This says it all. I didn’t manage to get one, but that’s the fun of collecting in my opinion, the hunt (whether fruitful or not so much). Bravo.

  • April 18, 2017 at 9:07 am

    I was lucky enough to acquire all the celebration pops this time around. This was because I put in EFFORT to make it happen. I was at my local GameStop when they opened at 10am. I was at my local Hot Topic at 10:30am. I corresponded with other local pop hunters and we looked out for each other. I picked up an extra Hooded Luke at GameStop and sold it at cost to a friend who texted me the Walgreens link when it went live. I bought two Spy pops and traded the extra to a local pop collector who was fortunate enough to grab multiple Qui Gon pops at multiple local Targets. Every multiple Qui Gon he picked up he either traded fairly or sold at cost locally. I bought Thrawn off of TRU website midday Thursday. The remaining pops that I couldn’t find in stores I bought off of eBay for a markup because I wanted them that much and was ok paying the difference to make it happen. This is the problem with a lot of these “collectors”: they want everything given to them and claim that they really want something but feel entitled to only have it at msrp because paying above that is “unfair”. Yes the Qui Gon is a good example of vulture flippers preying off a hot item but most the time instead of crying flipper realize the time and effort it takes to acquire these pops. For those of you that don’t live near a target or are international I feel for you there is really nothing you can do but pay a markup. I know we all wish everyone was as organized and reliable with their pops as GameStop and Hot Topic (I’m looking at you FYE). Instead of blaming employees or crying about paying an extra $30 for something you supposedly have to have, communicate with your local pop friends and collectors and make it happen. Stop only worrying about yourself and look after one another.

  • April 18, 2017 at 9:14 am

    This is exactly why I didn’t bother collecting the star wars pops, I knew there would far to many and a lot of “exclusives”, I collect the ones I like and if I can’t get one, then I move on, I put a cap on how much I’d spend on a pop, and thats only if I really really want it, like you say there a piece of plastic at the end of the day.

  • April 18, 2017 at 9:59 am

    By the way BoxLunch has Leia up again. $10.90

  • April 18, 2017 at 10:17 am

    I like the picture that went along with the story. IN other news, I don’t believe Luke with a hood and a lightsaber was ever in a movie either.

    • April 18, 2017 at 10:39 am

      100% correct. He only had the hood up until the Rancor pit. Not sure what Funko was thinking with Luke or Qui-Gon, to be honest. The Spirit of Qui-Gon would have made sense, because from what I understand he was supposed to appear in spirit form during Obi-Wan’s and Yoda’s final conversation on the cruiser.

  • April 18, 2017 at 11:14 am

    He wasn’t in a movie but he was in the Clone Wars show and was the first Jedi to learn to become a force ghost. Some more food for thought.

    • April 18, 2017 at 1:01 pm

      He was a holograph in The Clone Wars? Or a spirit? I haven’t watched all of The Clone Wars so I’m not as knowledgeable of that.

      • April 19, 2017 at 4:18 pm

        Oh man you have to finish it! the last season ties in the movies, like order 66 and how Yoda and Obi learned how to project themselves as force ghosts. and the island that Luke is on in the force awakens. So good

  • April 18, 2017 at 11:55 am

    Everyone who says that Funko should not allow Target to be a retailer to sell con exclusives. If that happens then people will say that no retailer should do it. Then guess what will happen? Funko will only sell the con exclusives at, you guessed it, the CON that it is exclusive to. We should be grateful that they even do shared exclusives. This collecting is something that is supposed to be fun not stressful. Does it suck when someone comes in and buys all the exclusives or chases just to put them on ebay or offerup to make a quick buck? Yes, yes it does. But that is just one of the pitfalls of collecting. And they do it because people will pay whatever price to have the “collectible” that they want. We are the reason why there is a secondary market, aka flippers. If you don’t like it then don’t buy from them. If you don’t like that Funko shares their Con exclusives with retailers, then bitch and moan all you want. Funko could stop doing that at anytime, then you would have a real reason to bitch and moan. Like I always tell my son “stop crying or I’ll give you a real reason to cry”. If we don’t stop Funko will be our parents and we will be the kids and they will give us a real reason to cry

  • April 18, 2017 at 12:52 pm

    Toy Collecting aren’t for whiners period. The joy in toy collecting is the hunt. If you didn’t get the figure you want then move on. Stop whining. Not everything is handed on a silver platter.

  • April 18, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    I believe the real problem has already been pointed out. Its the people who live in their parents basements and wait for certain exclusives to drop because of a computer program they just so happen to have. Then proceeds to that particular location when they open and purchases them all. Comes back to the basement and sells them for a profit online or trades them among that persons little pop clique. I think all stores should limit one per customer and have a little better advertising for ALL customers to have a fair shake at obtaining one. This I believe, would relieve some, if not all of the stress of collecting funko.

  • April 18, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    What I didn’t like is that my target assured me they weren’t releasing him early and then I called them Saturday morning when they opened and they still said they weren’t releasing him till Monday but when I went to target later that day Saturday I decided to ask someone to make sure and they said they already sold them all…. Its so unfair when they kept telling me they wouldn’t release him early then did after all… Another place I can’t stand is Walmart. Apparently the owner of the Walmart in my town doesn’t care about the toy section so we get no dorbz or new pops at my Walmart … Its so unfair that this happens and I can’t even order online because flippers buy them all…

  • April 18, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    I must say that yes the qui gon thing was a mess, but I got one pretty easily. The real problem of these exclusives was gamestop! I mean last they got like 12 of each and this year they got 2! I couldn’t get it anywhere near me, if anyone has an extra please let me know. I can pay extra, but not flipper prices.

  • April 18, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    What happened at Target with the Qui Gon release reminds me of the issues Funko had at their SDCC booth in 2015. Communication issues and changing policies made for a confusing and frustrating 4 days as booth tickets were handed out at the booth, and then not at the booth, and then around the Con, and then at the booth again. Crazy! (2016 SDCC was worse, but now that Funko has embraced the booth ticket lottery system, starting at NYCC 2016, it seems they have “gotten a handle” on the crazy booth issues.)

    Target’s Qui Gon release issues came mostly from miscommunication: 1) between Funko & Target…if that even happened, because big-box stores have a contract to sell something, but there probably isn’t a meeting with the manufacturer on how the release should be done. 2) between Target & their stores around the country…if that even happened, because it turns out that Target sells a lot of other items besides Funko Pop!s and a release like this probably didn’t even warrant a special announcement from corporate. 3) between individual Target stores & their customers, because the upchain had so many issues most stores didn’t even really know what was going on.

    In Phoenix, where I live, there were stores that did release on Friday and stores that didn’t, insisting that they were going to wait until Monday. That just added to the confusion. Talking w/Target employees & having them check their magic red machines hanging from their belts produced unreliable results, because those update every 24 hours.

    I’m hoping that, like the welcome changes that Funko made to their booth line system after all the comments & suggestions, they will take a more active role in instructing store chains on how exclusives should be released to customers. (i.e. release date, quantity limits, etc.)

    Happy Hunting!

  • April 18, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    I personally didn’t get any of the star wars pops. The only one I was looking at was the clone trooper, which fye sold online at some odd release hours so I couldn’t get one. I am getting tired of all the star wars pops.
    The whining people are doing over this Qui gon pop is because they didn’t get one to flip. As it was announced I’m sure people went nuts just because the original Qui gon is going for over $300. So they figured this would do the same being special and could make a lot off their $15 buy. I don’t care about Qui gon. I personally still don’t see why he is $300+. He was out of 2,000. So what. I have many out of 2,000 and 1,000 and 500. None of then are worth near what that is. So I don’t know what craze has driven it up and keeps it there.

    • April 25, 2017 at 11:00 pm

      Amen! The unmasked boushh leia from the year before at sdcc has about half as many as the qui gon and it’s valued pretty close.

  • April 19, 2017 at 6:41 am

    I wrote to my target because… Well, I’ll post what I put. You’ll understand:

    “I’m a longtime target customer and I was a bit disappointed in my experience today. I arrived before opening for the Funko Pop! Holographic Qui Gon Jinn. One employee who came out to ask what we were in-line for. I inquired if they had the product in stock (DPCI-087-062-181) and he confirmed they had 4 units on hand. However, once the store opened, the product could not be found anywhere on the floor. I and a few others went to speak to the cashier in the electronics department for assistance in locating the product. He checked his computer and also confirmed that 4 units were in stock but no product had been released on to the floor and that 2 units were sold on Friday. He then called the stock room to have the product brought out but the stock room verbally said that there was no product available.

    My question is, how is it possible that 2 units were sold on Friday, 2 days before the release date/public sale of the product? Additionally, how could there be no inventory available on the day of the release at the opening of the store even though 2 separate employees confirmed the product was on hand?”

    I wasn’t mad cause there wasn’t so many of it. I was mad cause before the store even opened, they were all gone. Even though 2 employees said they were in stock.

  • April 19, 2017 at 7:13 am

    This is what I wrote to Target.

    “I’m a longtime target customer and I was a bit disappointed in my experience today. I arrived before opening for the Funko Pop! Holographic Qui Gon Jinn. One employee came out to ask what we were in-line for. I inquired if they had the product in stock (DPCI-087-062-181) and he confirmed they had 4 units on hand. However, once the store opened, the product could not be found anywhere on the floor. I and a few others went to speak to the cashier in the electronics department for assistance in locating the product. He checked his computer and also confirmed that 4 units were in stock but no product had been released on to the floor and that 2 units were sold on Friday. He then called the stock room to have the product brought out but the stock room verbally said that there was no product available.

    My question is, how is it possible that 2 units were sold on Friday, 2 days before the release date/public sale of the product? Additionally, how could there be no inventory available on the day of the release at the opening of the store even though 2 separate employees confirmed the product was on hand?”

  • April 21, 2017 at 10:22 am

    She forgot to put this page with fugitive toys. We use to be able to sell and trade pops on this website openly, until idiots started to threaten people and put ridiculous threats. I miss the Fbox so much, I was only able to order one Fbox because they would sell out so fast.

  • April 26, 2017 at 12:05 pm

    its not target fault, but it is? they have employees that knows they can resell and try to keep for themselves and friends and families. SMFH. system has a stock full but no pops on the shelves. its understandable but yet annoying.

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