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THE ROCK FATHER: THE POP CULTURE MAGAZINE FOR FAMILIES THAT ROCK.

Toyography: Here's Rocket Raccoon's Hot Wheels GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Character Car...

Every so often, beyond the normal realm of traditional vehicles, Mattel releases a fresh batch of Hot Wheels "Character Cars" - concept vehicles inspired by a pop culture franchise. In the past, the Character Cars series has seen MIGHTY MORPHIN POWER RANGERS, TOY STORY 3, THE MUPPETS, and even SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS get the Hot Wheels treatment - but right now the two big lines are based on STAR WARS (two of which I showcased here) and MARVEL Comics. From the MARVEL assortment comes the GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Rocket Raccoon car, featured in a #Toyography post on my social networks last week, and one that I've decided to share here on the site with a little more detail. First, the original photo...

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Don't Believe Me Just Watch: James Brown vs Mark Ronson & Bruno Mars - AMERICAN UPTOWN FUNK (Mashup)

When it comes to mashups, Austria's DJ SCHMOLLI is one of the best in the game, and as such I've written about his work on a few sites over the years (here's one of my favorites). This week, Schmolli places JAMES BROWN vs. MARK RONSON and BRUNO MARS for "American Uptown Funk," a mashup of the recent hit "Uptown Funk" and the 1985 classic, "Living in America" (ROCKY IV!). While the video was quickly up-and-down over at YouTube, Vimeo has a fresh version that you need to watch...

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LEGO SCOOBY-DOO is Bringing "those meddling kids" to Brick Form!

Confirmed: I need a LEGO Mystery Machine to go along with my LEGO Ghostbusters Ecto-1. This August, that just may happen as  Scooby, Shaggy, Fred, Daphne, Velma and the Mystery Machine, as well as all the ghosts, goblins and other villains that make SCOOBY-DOO adventures complete come to LEGO form for the very first time in a series of five new building sets. Announced today by The LEGO Group and Warner Bros. Consumer Products, the sets will be accompanied by a 22-minute LEGO SCOOBY-DOO special, and made-for-video movie titles by Warner Bros. Animation that will feature the Mystery Inc. gang animated in LEGO form, much like BATMAN and STAR WARS before them. 

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Test Drive: Rockin' the Road - 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander GT Review

It's a rare thing to have a vehicle from a press fleet for more than a week, but that's exactly what happened when a 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander GT arrived here at Rock Father HQ for review over the holidays. The extra time was beneficial both to the vehicle and our family for some real-world testing hauling people and stuff from Northern Illinois to Michigan and back. Marketed as a great value and exceptionally safe Crossover SUV for families looking for a lot of people capacity for a lower price, Mitsubishi has wisely focused on the Outlander's strong points, drawing attention away from some curiously-unexciting features on the design front. While my thoughts are split on this one, I can tell you this before we move any further: my kids love it.

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JAKE AND THE NEVER LAND PIRATES - BATTLE FOR THE BOOK (An Adventure-Packed Review)

Growing up, I don't remember there being much love for pirates. In fact, as an 80s kid, the only real "pirate" memory that sticks in my head is One Eyed Willy and his fantastic ship in THE GOONIES (which turns 30 this year), and one of the major reasons why is that most pirates were sorta a-holes, and Captain James Hook was the poster boy. Weird thing is, back then the "talk" of Hook was bigger than the character, as we'd only seen PETER PAN during a theatrical re-release in 1982. Fast-forward a few decades and pirates are everywhere, and as new generations have had instant access to older films, there's a really cool vibe that surrounds JAKE AND THE NEVER LAND PIRATES as an educational, yet fun series that manages to seamlessly bridge the classic and the modern. While Captain Hook might be a little toned-down from his earlier, more sinister days, he's still an a-hole, and that's the driving force behind the recent BATTLE FOR THE BOOK, which premiered last Fall on Disney Junior and is now out on DVD.

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Is ROCK BAND 4 Coming in 2015? Do YOU Want it? Here's Your Chance to Be Heard...

Could Harmonix really be releasing the "next-gen" version of ROCK BAND this year? Rumors have been swirling since last fall that ROCK BAND 4 (though that may not be the title) is in-the-works, and last week it appeared that the waters were being tested when the ROCK BAND Music Store on Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 "sprung to life" after nearly two years of dormancy following the final DLC release back in April of 2013 (which I wrote about here). New tracks from AVENGED SEVENFOLD and ARCTIC MONKEYS arrived for ROCK BAND alongside FOO FIGHTERS' "Something From Nothing" (aka the "Chicago" song from SONIC HIGHWAYS), presented in the classic vocals/guitar/bass/drums format of earlier releases. So the question is... do YOU want a new ROCK BAND game? And if so, would you make your voice heard? 

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Win Tickets to MONSTER JAM! Returning to the Allstate Arena with #MoreMonsterJam!

I just had to disappoint my girls. Feld Motorsports is bringing MONSTER JAM back to the Chicago area, and we can't go this time. Since I took Addie to her first MONSTER JAM last year, those Monster Trucks have become a huge deal here at Rock Father HQ, with both of my girls amassing a pretty solid collection of the 1:64-scale replicas that Mattel produces as part of the Hot Wheels line. In fact, the Hot Wheels Team even used one of my personal photos on their Facebook page to usher in the fall season last year - the Halloween Grave Digger! While we can't make it to this run of shows, Feld Motorsports and THE ROCK FATHER are teaming up to give one (1) lucky family a chance at attending with a Family Pack of four (4) tickets to see #MoreMonsterJam on either February 5 or 6, 2015. And if you'd like to buy tickets at a discount? We've got your hook-up on that as well. This year, #MoreMonsterJam brings more of what fans have been asking for, read on for details!

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Preview: ART OF ANARCHY - The New Band featuring SCOTT WEILAND w/Members of GUNS N' ROSES, DISTURBED...

Update: Weiland says he just did vocals for the album as a side project, and will not tour with this band.

Well this one came out of nowhere - SCOTT WEILAND, the former voice of both STONE TEMPLE PILOTS and VELVET REVOLVER is fronting a new band - this news coming on the heels of a solo tour and album as SCOTT WEILAND & THE WILDABOUTS. Below the jump you can check out a preview of ART OF ANARCHY, the new band featuring Weiland along with DISTURBED bassist Jon Moyer, GUNS N' ROSES guitarist Rob 'Bumblefoot' Thal, and brothers Jon and Vince Votta (guitar and drums)...

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PBS KIDS Announces All-New Series, NATURE CAT...

PBS KIDS VIP (Very Involved Parent)This Fall, there's a new cat on the prowl over at PBS KIDS. NATURE CAT is the all-new original animated series from co-creators and brothers David Rudman (Cookie Monster on SESAME STREET, The Muppets) and Adam Rudman (Tom & Jerry, SESAME STREET, CYBERCHASE) that aims to inspire kids ages 3-8 to "get outdoors and develop connections with the natural world."

The series was announced yesterday at the TCA Press Tour, with a multi-platform rollout planned. Full details below...

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National Hugging Day 2015: Baymax of BIG HERO 6 Named "Most Huggable Character"

Today is National Hugging Day (held every year on January 21), and for 2015 (after much deliberation and even more hugging), Baymax, the lovable personal companion robot and star of Walt Disney Animation Studios' Academy Award-Nominated film BIG HERO 6 was today named "Most Huggable Character of 2015"! To celebrate, a new montage of Baymax's "most huggable moments" has been released and can be seen below. According to the Ambassador of Hugs, Kevin Zaborney (founder and creator of National Hugging Day), Baymax humbly accepted the award from his residence in San Fransokyo where he attributed the honor to his “non-threatening, huggable design” and said he looks forward to spending the upcoming year giving and receiving hugs from all.

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Listen: THE BLOODLINE releases first single, "With Fire (Comes Absolution)"

THE BLOODLINE - With Fire (Single)We all need a little rock in our day, and this being "New Music Tuesday," I've got something completely fresh for you - the debut single from THE BLOODLINE. Now, you may recall that this is the new band featuring my friend Shaun Glass, who was featured along with his little one (our kids have been known to play together) in a Father's Day Showcase here on THE ROCK FATHER last year. "With Fire (Comes Absolution)" is the first single from the album WE ARE ONE, set for release on March 24 via Another Century, the new "rock" arm of Century Media. The lyric video premiered earlier today at Revolver Magazine, and now I'm sharing it below. Dig the song? Get it now via iTunes or Amazon...

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ReAction Figures: BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA Collection on the Way...

One of my favorite toy lines of the past year is one that falls into that "for the adult collector" category - ReAction Figures by Funko. First launched with a series based on a scrapped Kenner ALIENS line from the 80s, these figures take pop culture licenses from years past, and give them the action figures that they would have had should they had toys back in the days when the original, 5POA (five points of articulation) Vintage STAR WARS figures reigned supreme. Following figures from BACK TO THE FUTURE, THE GOONIES, PREDATOR and TERMINATOR, the folks at Funko are rolling out a series of six characters based on John Carpenter's 1986 classic, BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA. This wave includes Jack Burton (Kurt Russell), Gracie Law (Kim Cattrall), and David Lo Pan (James Hong) alongside Thunder, Rain and Lightning. Check 'em out below...

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MONSTER HIGH: HAUNTED slithers home this spring...

The students of MONSTER HIGH have a spooktacular new adventure on the way. Arriving on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD on March 24 via Universal Studios Home Entertainment, MONSTER HIGH: HAUNTED finds the ghouls of Mattel's popular series paying a visit to the all-spirit Haunted High. Check out a teaser and film details below, right here on THE ROCK FATHER...

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