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Hollie received a set of Wonder Pets soft toys a couple of Christmases ago, she has been a fan of the programme since she was too young to be watching television (!) and was ridiculously excited when she opened this gift. Despite her love of the programme my heart sunk when I saw them as in these days of flashing lights and twinkly music, basic soft toys too often become quickly relegated to the bottom of the toy box. I've had to eat my words with Linny, Tuck and Ming Ming though as Hollie loves them just as much now as she did on Christmas Day 2009.
The toy we have is the small 6" beanie, it has lovely soft fur (way softer than a real guinea pig, which is of course what Linny is) and is filled with softer than average stuffing. Linny's bottom is filled with beans which adds a bit of weight to the toy and also helps a child to be able to sit Linny up to use in a role play game or tea party.
The toy looks quite accurate compared to the Linny Hollie watches on tele, although how hard can it be to make a cuddly brown guinea pig look like another cuddly brown guinea pig?! This Linny is wearing a cape and hat, which completes the look and makes the toy easily recognisable as a Wonder Pet. It's a 'surface wash only' toy but after Hollie managed to upend a glass of milk all over it I decided to chance it in the washing machine, it took a while to dry fully but no damage was caused to the toy on a cool quick wash.
At one time Hollie used to sleep with her three beanie Wonder Pets toys but they're too small really and she kept losing them under her quilt, the larger 10" toys would be more suitable but at £15 for a non-talking toy these are not such good value for money as the £5 beanies. Due to the fact that they can all be coaxed into a sitting position it was easy to arrange them on her bedroom shelf so that she could still see them while in bed, and this also freed up space for her to tuck one of her bigger toys up with her for the night.
As far as soft toys go, this one gets more playtime than you'd expect. Hollie uses it alongside the other two Wonder Pets toys and re-enacts episodes from the various DVDs she has, she uses other animal soft toys as characters for the Wonder Pets to rescue or play with. She'll use Linny the most as she's the leader of the Wonder Pets gang but the toy is still in perfect condition, no seams have gone and the toy's stuffing is as soft and full as it was on the day Hollie received it.
I've been surprised at how much this toy has been played with; beanies are great but they're hardly known for their playability as small soft toys just don't fit into many games. The Wonder Pets fit a niche I think, the television programme is so 'different' (caped school pets rescuing baby animals all over the world) that straight away you have a game for the toys. I love watching Hollie play as Linny brings out her imagination and she becomes more and more adventurous with the plights the baby animals find themselves in, today's game involved Linny swooping in to save a Me to You bear from certain death after being squashed by the Robosapien.
This Linny toy is one of those - if you buy one you've got to buy the set, a single Wonder Pet is a lonely Wonder Pet. Tuck and Ming Ming are equally sweet though and at £15 for the three I don't really think you can go wrong if you have a little Wonder Pets fan to buy for.
My sister had the 3 Wonder Pet small plush toys for Xmas, at the time I brought them they were £2.99 in Sainsburys but I think the price has gone back up to £5.99 now.
Personally I think this one is worth the price I paid but I wouldn't have wanted to pay full price for it because of the size, and the fact that even though it looks like a guinea pig/hamster toy there's nothing that screams that this is Linny apart from the cape the toy is wearing.
Linny is the leader of the Wonder Pets and this character is my sisters fave out of all of them. The problem is that this toy doesn't look much like the Linny we're used to seeing on tv, if the cape ever got lost I reckon my sister would lose interest in the toy big time because even now we have to remind her to play with it.
It's a shame because there's not many Wonder Pets toys about and when I brought the set I thought my sister would love them, the other 2 are actually very life like so maybe it's just harder to get a more realistic guinea pig??? I don't know but I do know this is a proper disappointing toy for my sister and doesn't hold any interest for her.
The toy is well made, the seams are all sewn tight and the nose and eyes are on tight so they can't come off when your child pulls at them. The label said Linny is suitable for babies of over 18 months and that's about the same as all these little toys.
This Linny stands about 6 inchs tall but you can also get bigger plush Wonder Pets toys including one I think that will say some of the catchprases from the tv show.
I don't recommend this small one at all though because even though it's cute I only brought it so that my sister would have the set of them, and now she's got the set she only wants to play with the other 2 because I think she forgets that this is supposed to be Linny!