I remember getting a call one Saturday afternoon from this guy who wanted to tell me about his new TV show that was in production, and he wanted to get my opinion on the rough cut of the pilot episode. Sure, why not. At this point, I had no idea who Jordan Hembrough was, but after watching the show, I knew that he was a kindred spirit, who revelled in the thrill of the hunt, and that he had created a show that was made just for me. I called Jordan back the next day and told him not to change a thing.
Sadly, it appears that the end might be in sight for the best (only?) vintage toy collecting show on television. After three seasons, it looks like the Travel Channel’s Toy Hunter may have run its course. Jordan Hembrough recently posted this note on the Rebelscum message boards:
Thanks for the positive feedback and constructive comments, I appreciate them.
The show was not cancelled, my contract was up after four years, and I wanted to work on something else. I got a “once in a lifetime” chance to work with not only a movie studio, but a theme park as well.. and still continue commentary for both Marvel and DC. It was simply “the next level” for me.
Toy Hunter was one of the highest rated shows on Travel, and continues to shatter ratings overseas. I just got an E-mail today that we are on in Tasmania, and they are running marathons.
Something is being developed for the International Market… that is really all I can say right now. Yes, I will be attached to the project.
And, I just wanted to comment on the “staging” aspect of the show. To be honest, probably 90% of all shows have some “staging”. You need it. Simply because… REAL LIFE is boring. There need to be stakes, there has to be a “reason” I go somewhere.. and some sort of outcome for me not succeeding in my mission. The financial aspect of Toy Hunter ( just like Pawn Stars, and American Pickers) was necessary. People wanted to know how much the stuff was worth.
Look… I put myself out there. I opened myself up to the market, and collectors.. and fans. Some people still hate me for it and to this day.. and choose to make comments about from the anonymity of a computer keyboard. I see vile and hurtful posts about me and my business on social media sites.. from people I dont even know, not have ever met. Guess what… it hurts.
For the most part, however, people enjoyed it. It brought back memories and really put the collectors in a positive light.
And.. like an idiot that I am… I will be back for more. Updates as soon as I can talk about it.
Best always, Jordan
So, what does this mean? It looks like Jordan won’t be returning for another season, but does that mean the show is done or will they proceed with a new host? It certainly sounds like the show was doing well in the ratings, but who really knows what has been going on behind the scenes.
I know that I will miss Toy Hunter. I’ve been a fan from the pilot episode and think that it did wonders to bring the toy collecting hobby into the mainstream — for better or worse. Sure, Jordan had his quirks, but hosting a reality show is an impossible task, and I’m just glad it was him and not me! Lord knows, I found myself throwing my vintage plush ALF doll at the screen on more than one occasion as the show riled me up, but I tried to keep an eye on the bigger picture — this was our public soapbox that confirmed what we already know to the outside world, collecting toys is awesome.
Over the years, it has been difficult to see the trolls tear Jordan down in typical troll fashion — hey internet, this is why we can’t have nice things. I have to give the guy credit in keeping his composure and not striking back at the very vocal critics — I can imagine, that was no easy task.
Visiting Jordan’s shop, Hollywood Heroes, in New Jersey is on my bucket list for whenever I head north, and Jordan, I hope you are there on that day so that I can shake your hand and thank you for what you did for the toy collecting community. (Now, I will duck as the trolls are sure to come flying my way!)
While not a fan of the show myself his letter really made me respect him so much more. Admitting that there were staged aspects and being honest was refreshing. Best of luck to him in his new endeavor.
Remember the show Collection Intervention? Now that one is easy to hate.
Oh, I remember. 😉
Aw, I kinda liked Collection Intervention.
Also, I had just finally warmed up to Toy Hunter.
Hmm, it will be interesting to see what happens. I’ve never been a big fan of Jordan’s but, I did enjoy the show. And I also enjoyed watching Collection Intervention but, I definitely could see the limited lifespan of that show.
Maybe Rob Bruce’s new show will be taking it’s place 🙂 He’s pretty damn interesting.
And on that note, I’m super stoked for the new season of Comic Book Men!
The last I heard abut Rob Bruce’s show was this interview: http://13thdimension.com/rob-bruces-amc-tv-show-is-go/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rob-bruces-amc-tv-show-is-go
Has there been a title or launch date announced? I’ve been out of the loop.
Stunt Zombie says
I don’t have anything against Jordan, but frankly, I couldn’t stand his show.But, I can’t stand any reality tv shows, so it’s not just Toy Hunter. Yeah, it brought attention to the hobby, but I almost feel like it brought the wrong kind of attention. Much like Antiques Roadshow gave people the idea that all their old junk was valuable, I think people get the impression that all their broken and worn out toys are worth a small fortune.
I honestly think he could have done away with the buying and selling aspect of his show, and still had a great program. He could have had a show that consisted of visiting collectors and showcasing their collections, or, tracking down rare toys and prototypes and covering their backstory and history. Once you start bringing money and value into the conversation, it lessens the impact of the show.
Just my opinion of course.
If you haven’t checked it out, I would HIGHLY recommend watching “Extreme Collectors” if you can find it: http://www.slice.ca/extreme-collectors/
This is a Canadian show but I’ve seen several episodes sporadically on the History or Discovery Channel on weekend afternoons. It’s not a toy-centric show, but it is the perfect formula — the host goes in and oohs and awes over the collection and then gives the collector an appraised value of his entire collection. There’s no buying or selling, just pure eye candy. I love it.
The Toy Box says
I will honestly not miss The Toy Scalp…Er…The Toy Hunter. Saw two episodes of seaon one and never looked back. Didn’t enjoy the host, the concept or the focus. Now if the show would have been about the collectors and developers of the toys, and a history of the lines themselves as well as a spotlight on major collectors, that would have been a show I tuned in for weekly. But, to sit there and watch some man tell people, “Do you know how much this is worth? About 20K! I’ll give you fifty bucks for it.” That just made me sick.
The show really did get better with age. A lot of the lowball offers went the other direction, presumably due to the outcry from the fans.
Rich - Nerd Nook says
Bummed to hear this. Was an enjoyable show for us nostalgic toy lover types. Was my hump day show to look forward to 🙁
john gaither says
I used to enjoy the show until the format changed up to include more famous people and i sort of just lost interest…first season was the best season no doubt. As far as staging…heck yeah there staging! All shows like this have that.
Yeah, the celebrities were a real sticking point for me as well.
Mike Gutierrez says
Well, that stinks. I loved Toy Hunter. Oh, well. At least I still have Comic Book Men.
Dex1138 (@Dex1138) says
I didn’t always care for the way the show was setup but I liked Jordan and of course, the toys!
And I’m with John, the celebrity clients did nothing for me but help me remember I was watching a reality show that probably has way too much staging to it.
Paul Stadinger says
I have never been a fan of Toy Hunter being a long time toy dealer. The staging never bother me because I knew it was done on all the shows.. (If you watch Baggage Battles never believe that they are going to find a great item in a closed trunk. No auctioneer worth his salt is going to not open everything he gets.) What annoyed me on the show was some of the things Jordan did such as when he pull the Kiss viewmaster from a collector’s hand at the Wayne Toy show. Staged or not it is some you never pull an item from someone unless they are mishandling etc. I was at the Wayne show when it was filmed, but did not see that scene being filmed or I would have balled him out
I was not happy how Jordan looked down on Steve Savino’s expertise on certain items. I have met Steve several times and have high respect for his knowledge and expertise as other dealers do too. My condolences went to Steve not Jordan.
As to Comic Men I find that to be a horrible show. How it stays on is a amazing to me.
Well poop. Isn’t this always what happens? You just get into something and then it’s gone. It’s like Oreo Cereal all over again. lol
It may be a sad news that Toy Hunter will be gone but then, I know Jordan will have a wonderful journey in his new venture. Will stick to Marvel and Comic Book.
Robb wages says
Show was ok, toys were great, Gene Simmons..
mah bog says
ah found mah thr-ill
onnnnnnnnnn blueberry hill
Scott Hintze says
I really miss Toy Hunter. However, I have recorded all three seasons on my dvr and now I am burning it to
some dvds. This show helped me a lot. Now, I am on the hunt of my own toy collections, mostly Star Wars, and
other items. I check in the papers, online and at estate/garage sales. If I find any, I’ll buy it and see how much their worth, and take it to be appraised,
I enjoyed the show and made me think twice at yard sales and other places. As to scalping. It’s called paying retail or cost. You get it in a store or when you price food costs you include overhead and etc…. So I thought celebrities was cool, he got more familiar, household name so they found him to help them staging, idk all on that but who knows how things edited and filmed. My opinion , whatever….if show works then fine
We have more reality shows than real shows anymore , which is sad that family quality gone …. I’d love to go on a toy hunt with Jordan :-). Best to you Jordan if sees this. Keep on digging