Friday, March 25, 2016

What's in the Box?!?: Gentleman's Box and Star Wars: Smuggler's Bounty

Time for some of this month’s subscription boxes!

Arriving first this week: the March Gentleman’s Box! (I know, I just blogged about the February one the other week. Blame my weekly publishing schedule, but I just am not in a place to post more frequently than that at this time.)

As usual, the classy wood-grained exterior opens to reveal the explanation booklet. This month’s box is inspired by “Our Favorite Captain,” by which they mean Johnny Depp. 

Beneath the booklet are this month’s neatly-wrapped contents.

When discussing the February box, I talked about how we had decided to suspend my Sock Fancy subscription, particularly if I was going to be getting socks in the Gentleman’s Box. Sure enough, this month’s box included another pair of socks, from Unsimply Stitched. These ones don’t have a name (unlike last month’s socks) but they feel nice and soft. And, according to the booklet, this design is a special production only available to Gentleman’s Box members. Sock collectors take note!

A year or two ago, I had received some Billy Jealousy aftershave balm in a Birchbox box (to which we no longer subscribe). I liked it, but because I was getting so many different aftershave samples, I never needed to buy more. I was pleased to see that this month’s box included a sample tube of Billy Jealousy’s Shaved Ice aftershave. I’m no good at describing scents, but it’s a scent that evokes cool freshness without seeming minty, and definitely not floral. I’m looking forward to incorporating it into my aftershave rotation.

I don’t often wear suits, and I don’t think I’ve ever bothered with a pocket square, so I don’t know how often I’ll be wearing the shipyard pocket square from Knots Apparel. Apparently, they routinely dedicate a portion of their sales to specific charities, so that alone is worth applauding. The sales from Gentleman’s Box go to support The Joseph Fund. This particular design is—like the socks—exclusive to this month’s Gentleman’s Box, so, again, collectible! It’s a nautical theme, in keeping with “Our Favorite Captain,” so perhaps I will wear it if I am ever invited to the Yacht Club.

While I may not always wear a suit, I always wear collar stays with my nice shirts. I had been using some magnetic collar stays from Wurkin Stiffs, but those are designed to keep your collar down in place around a neck tie. I was just using them to keep my collar tips pointy, so I was underutilizing them. So I’m glad to get a set of wooden collar stays from Woodchuck USA. These will definitely be easier to use for my purposes, and they come in a variety of sizes, which will be handy.

Finally, this box included a pair of nice aviator sunglasses. They look really nice, and are the kind of sunglasses I’ve always wanted. Unfortunately, I wear prescription glasses, so I can’t really wear just these when I am out and about. Still, I will have them on hand if I ever get contacts, or just don’t need to see stuff too clearly.

The box also included a coupon for $20 off an order from a company called Parsonii, “the watch that changes with you.” I haven’t really looked into this yet, so I don’t know if it’s good value for money. Regardless, it’s just a coupon.

Overall, Gentleman’s Box says there’s $87 in value in this month’s box, and I’m going to use most of it. So it’s a good haul.

I also received this month’s Star Wars Smuggler’s Bounty. This month’s theme is Cantina, as evidenced by the image of Greedo on the box.

Inside, we get the usual patch and pin. This month’s pin is Greedo or some other Rodian, and the pin is one of the cantina musicians.

Inside, the boxed isn’t packed as fancy as Gentleman’s Box, but everything is pretty secure.

This month’s T-shirt is a cool Wanted: Han Solo design. I’ll definitely be wearing this when I am out and about. I appreciate that it’s a picture of Harrison Ford/Han Solo, not the Funko Pop version of him.

The other non-Pop item this month is a pen topped with a mini version of the Chewbacca Pop. It’s cute, but I haven’t tested the quality of the line and ink yet. (AS IF ANYONE GIVES A POOP.)

Finally, this month’s exclusive Pops: Obi-Wan Kenobi and… Red Snaggletooth? Nerd that I am, I do recognize this alien from the cantina scene in the original Star Wars movie. Seeing a Pop of him reminds me of my youth, when I would buy action figures of almost any background alien that Kenner would produce. As an adult, I do kind of wonder whether Red Snaggletooth is his real name, because that would be kind of cool. And I do kind of wonder what acclaimed Shakespearean actor Sir Alec Guinness would think about this plastic bobblehead version of himself. For what it’s worth, I think it’s pretty nifty. Plus, he’s standing there posed with his lightsaber, ready to go to town on some cantina drunks, so he looks pretty bad-ass.

Bonus box: I received this nifty gold Captain America statue as my charter member anniversary gift from the Marvel Collectors Corps. I think it looks awesome, except that the part of the arm holding the shield needs to be glued back on (of course). 

These are the boxes I had received by press time. I’m pretty happy with all of the stuff; even the things from Gentleman’s Box I might not regularly use are pretty cool, and I might make a point of using them, just to look dapper and cool. Please let me know in the comments what boxes you get, and your favorite items.

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