FUNKO REACTION UNIVERSAL MONSTERS – RONDO AWARDS 2015 BEST TOY NOMINEE

Collecting the Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy Category – Part 10

Funko ReAction Universal Monsters Collection

This is the final installment in my review of the 2014 nominees for the Best Toy, Model, Collectible category of the Rondo Hatton Horror Awards and we finish with the most classic of all monsters –the Funko ReAction Universal Monsters.Funko ReAction Universal Monsters

In 2013,  Funko and  Super 7 partnered to bring Kenner’s unreleased 1979 Alien prototypes to market.  It wasn’t long afterwards that Funko announced a full “ReAction” line of retro 3 ¾” action figures based on characters from 1980’s cult, sci-fi and horror cinema: Escape From New YorkBack to the FutureTerminator, a Rocketeer figure, iconic horror villains as well as the Universal Monsters.  These news collections were designed as an homage to classic Kenner Star Wars action figures of the 1970s and early 80s.

Controversy

The retro style has been a bit controversial as these figures have been panned by some for the lack of detailed likeness to the actors/character.  Funko even extended that feeling of “vintage-ness” through the packaging, which is the same size as the original Kenner packaging from the late ’70s /early ’80s. This has also met with some push-back by collectors who find the side-panel style packaging a challenge to display.

Reis O’Brien, Funko’s head designer of the ReAction line, explained the design inspiration for these figures in this quote from the FunkoFanatic Reaction Forum:

We did originally look towards the first run of Kenner Star Wars figures for inspiration, especially when we first got started, so that’s why you’ll see that our Terminator and Snake Plissken sort or mimic that “softness”, but as we went on, things got a little more detailed, a little closer to ROTJ figures, which you’ll see in the Universal Monsters and Horror lines. Basically, we think there’s a sweet spot somewhere in there that we keep trying to hit. But Kenner remains our main inspiration as opposed to, say, Remco or Mego. But they have their charm, too.

I buy that logic fully and think that they nailed the retro styling of the characters.  I particularly like the packaging, though finding them in pristine condition on store pegs has also been a frustration for collectors.

Funko ReAction-Universal Monsters Packaging Back of Card

There are a lot of great reviews on these figures already published and, frankly, from folks with greater expertise then me.  For your reading please, here’s a great review from one of my go-to resources for collectible toys,  Brian Heller at Plaid Stallions.

Here’s the Funko ReAction Universal Monsters collection, in order of theatrical appearance:

Funko ReAction Phantom of the Opera

Funky ReAction Phantom of the Opera

from The Phantom of the Opera (1925)

Funko ReAction Dracula

Funko ReAction Dracula

from Dracula (1931)

Funko ReAction Frankenstein's MonsterFunko ReAction Frankenstein’s Monster

from Frankenstein (1931)

Funko ReAction The Mummy

Funko ReAction The Mummy

from The Mummy (1932)

Funko ReAction The Invisible Man

Funko ReAction Invisible Man

from The Invisible Man (1933)

Funko ReAction Bride of Frankenstein

Funko ReAction Bride of Frankenstein

from The Bride of Frankenstein (1932)

Funko ReAction Wolf Man Funko ReAction Wolf Man

from The Wolf Man (1941)

Funko ReAction Creature from the Black Lagoon

Funko ReAction Creature from the Black Lagoon

from The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954)

Product Details

  • 3 ¾” action figures
  • Five points of articulation
  • bubble photo card
  • MSRP: $9.99 each

Chase Variants

Like all variants, forced scarcity is either the bane or the blessing of the completist collector.  The glow variants  were limited to one figure per every six cases and the clear Invisible Man was an Entertainment Earth exclusive.

Funko ReAction Glow VariantFunky ReAction Mummy Glow in the Dark

Funko-ReAction-Invisible-Man-Clear-Variant

Entertainment Earth exclusive                                    Invisible Man Transparent Variant

Funko ReAction Creature from the Black Lagoon

Creature from the Black Lagoon Glow Variant


Where to Buy Funko ReAction Universal Monsters Collection

These figures are available near and far, so the real goal is finding them at the best price.  They have been in the market long enough that they are widely available on secondary resale sites like eBay, but prices have increase because they are still available at retail prices in most stores.  This makes it a buyers market for these figures.

EntertainmentEarth

Amazon offers a full set of figures:

  •  8 figure set includes Dracula, Frankenstein, the Mummy, the Wolfman, Creature from the Black Lagoon, the Phantom of the Opera, Bride of Frankenstein, and the Invisible Man
  • Numerous sellers competing on price, with lowest being $75.48 shipping included ($9.44 per figure)

EBay

Good availability of the Mummy Glow-in-the-Dark Variant starting at $14.99

Best Price I’ve found on the Clear Invisible Man Variant — listed at $9.99 with 7 in stock

Lots of Glow Creature variant figures as well, starting at $19.99


Summary

While I appreciate that modern toy collectors have gotten used to incredible like-like sculpts, the fact that this line is inspired by 1970’s and 80’s toys is central to the design style.  My Han Solo figure from Kenner didn’t really look like Harrison Ford in 1978 and I didn’t care; I loved it completely and totally.

I think the ReACTION line would have missed the mark if the figures were too realistic.  They certainly wouldn’t have been as retro, so I’m fine with the less-then-realistic sculpts.  In short, I think Funko nailed these figures.

My favorites are pretty much in line with my favorite monsters; The Creature and The Wolf Man were the two “must-own” figures for me.  I was surprised by how much I liked the Invisible Man too.  So far, those are the only three I’ve purchased, but this review has me re-considering the variants, at lease for the Gillman and Invisible Man.

These are priced really well.  So well, in fact, that I got my kids a couple of the figures to open and —gasp– actually play with!

As a child of the 1970’s, who owned the original Kenner Star Wars figures, these bring back waves and waves of nostalgia.  As an adult  vintage monster toy collector, I love how these figures fit right into my collection.  I don’t tend to buy many modern monster toys or collectibles, simply because I focus my limited collecting budget on high-grade vintage pieces.

So thumbs up on the figures from me all the way around–design, price, packaging — Funko nailed it.  And with the recent announcement of the Jaws and Gremlins series, looks like we’ve got lots to look forward to from Funko ReAction.

Let me know your thoughts– do you like the retro style of the Funko ReAction Universal Monsters line or do you prefer the more sophisticated style of modern collectibles?

Happy Frankenstein Friday!

TGIFrankenstein, Folks!

And this week, we’re going hormonal with the Teenage Monster in a really cool reason bust from Executive Replicas — this thing is 3/4 scale and stands 18 inches tall!!
Teenage Frankestein Bust

Product Details

  • Height: 18-inches
  • 200 piece Limited edition
  • Resin
  • 3/4 Scale
  • Pre-painted
  • MSRP: $249.99

Expand your classic horror film collection! From  I Was a Teenage Frankestein (1957) and How to Make a Monster (1958), it’s the one-and-only Teenage Frankenstein.

This resin I Was a Teenage Frankenstein from Executive Replicas offers the misunderstood monster in incredible life-like detail and scale.  

Order I Was a Teenage Frankenstein Bust from Entertainment Earth!

Update May 2017:  This bust is sold out at retail and is only available on the secondary market (at least as far as I could find).  Here are links to a few of these that I found for sale or auction:

 

 

 

CLASSIC MOVIE POSTERS GALLERY – THE ROBOT MONSTER

Classic Movie Posters Gallery

Robot Monster One-Sheet Movie PosterThe Robot Monster (Astor Pictures, 1953) Style A One Sheet (27″ X 41″)

 

In my last post, I reviewed a toy inspired by this movie.  As I was writing that review, I did quite a bit of research on this film and thought it worthy of being this week’s installment in our Classic Movie Poster Gallery.

This 1953 science fiction romp is frequently cited as one of the worst, or at least silliest, movies ever made. Twenty-five-year-old writer/director Phil Tucker made Robot Monster in four days for an estimated $16,000. Most footage was filmed outdoors in Bronson Canyon, the site of innumerable motion pictures and TV settings, including It Conquered the World (1956), Earth vs the Spider (1958) and in more recent times, Army of Darkness (1992) and The Lost Skeleton of Cadavera (2001).

Robot Monster‍ ’​s budget was so low , Tucker couldn’t afford a robot costume as intended, so he hired his friend George Barrows, who had made his own gorilla suit, to play Ro-Man; Tucker then added the space helmet.

Robot Monster‍ ’​s special effects include stock footage used from 1940’s One Million , 1951’s Lost Continent, and Flight to Mars. Also spliced into the film is view screen footage with a brief appearance of the Rocketship X-M (1950) spaceship boarding; a matte painting of the ruins of New York City was also included from Captive Women (1952).

Robot Monster 1953

In spite of the minuscule budget and garage sale monster costume, the 3-D in the film is considered well-crafted, according to Jeff Joseph, organizer of the World 3d Film Expo in Hollywood. “Robot Monster is actually well-shot,’ he says, “and the 3-D is spectacularly good.”

Poster Value

This film flopped at the box-office, grossing $1,000,000 and received extremely limited distribution.  As a result, the posters are quite rare.  Further impacting scarcity and value, most theaters didn’t show the movie in the intended 3-D and the majority of posters have been restored where “3-D” was marked out or taped over with paper.

While not astronomically valued, the rarity of this poster would lead me to believe that it will continue to increase in worth over time and could be a good investment.

A couple of these posters are listed on eBay, starting at $2,000.  I couldn’t find any recent auctions for this poster to benchmark values against, though Heritage Auctions has sold other poster styles from this film in recent years, including:

Half-Sheet (22″ x 28″) VF Sold for $1,553 in 2009

Robot Monster Half-Sheet movie poster

Banner (24″ x 82″) FN+ Sold for $1,793 in 2012

Robot Monster Movie Banner 1953

 

Summary

This is another example of a really great poster for a really bad movie.   I love how much they’ve crammed into this poster — including love scenes, space ships, battling “dinosaurs” and even added a skull-face to Ro-Man to ramp up the fright.  Never mind that he doesn’t have a skull face in the movie, or that the iguana / “dinosaurs” appear for less than a minute.   Truly a poster from a different era and a great example of over-the-top, B-movie pop art at its finest.

Sputnik Supplies Ro-Boy – Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy Category Nominee

Collecting the Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy Category – Part 9

Sputnik Supplies Ro-Boy Vinyl Figure

It seems I’ve been exploring the intersection of iconic monsters and horrible movies in recent posts. In last week’s Classic Movie Poster post, I profiled 1958’s Attack of the 50 Foot Woman  – a bad movie with an iconic and timeless poster.

As we continue to review 2014 Rondo Awards nominees for Best Toy/Model/Collectible, today’s featured collectible certainly fits the bill for iconic monster/bad movie as we take a look at Sputnik Supplies original creation Ro-Boy.  Ro-Boy by Sputnik Supplies

Ro-Boy is a unique blend of the classic Big Boy restaurant mascot

Bobs Big Boy

with the infamous Ro-Man Extension XJ-2 from the campy, not-so-classic 1953 B-movie Robot Monster:Robot Monster

Sputnik Supplies is the brainchild of artist Paul Schiola who explains the inspiration behind his creations as:

“My love for vinyl toys and sculpting led me in a direction where I could meld the two and produce a truly collectible toy…make small runs of cool, unique and truly collectible vinyl-like toys; each one is an individual work of art and is always handmade by me here in the U.S.A.”

Ro-Man Extension XJ-2 is the titular monster and/or alien from The Robot Monster, a film with such a low budget that they used a gorilla suit because they didn’t have the budget for a full robot suit. 

It’s worth noting that the lack of budget and resulting gorilla/robot mash-up is the singular reason this film remains in the popular culture–it certainly isn’t the movie itself!

Product Details

  • Height: 7″
  • Handmade in USA
  • Sculptor: Paul Schiola
  • Hand-painted
  • MSRP: $85

 

Where to Buy Sputnik Supplies Ro-Boy

The only place that I could find this collectible figure was direct from the artist:

Sputnik Supplies Website

Paul offers these limited edition figures @ $85 which includes shipping.

Sputnik Supplies Ro-Boy Rondo Awards nominated Best Collectible 2014
© Sputnik Supplies

Summary

I love this figure.  Of all the nominees in the Rondo Awards category for Best Toy/Model/Collectible, it the only original creation.

While I love licensed merchandise, and am awed by the incredible life-like detail of many models, maquettes and even action figures of today, there is something magical about the discovery of a toy that isn’t from a movie, comic or TV show.

As a kid, it always felt like discovering something uniquely mine.  Obviously, a mass-produced plastic toy wasn’t uniquely mine, but the feeling was pure and joyful just the same.  I think it is one of the original draws I felt to monsters and genre movies in general– the fantastic and original creations of the artists and filmmakers were magical to me and, I suspect, most other monster kids.

I really appreciate that, while inspired by a rather infamous movie monster/alien, Ro-Boy is a creation of the artist’s imagination–and a hand-painted, handmade one at that.

The price point is steep, as it is for most of the nominees in this category.  But, given that this is really a work of pop culture art and is clearly NOT a toy, I’m okay with $85.  I imagine that price will only go up once Sputnik Supply sells the original inventory and it winds up on the secondary market.

The Robot Monster

Speaking of the movie that inspired Ro-Boy,  I watched it last night on Amazon Prime as I was drafting this article.   Honestly, I can’t say for sure if I had ever seen this film in its entirety.

My thoughts?  This movie is so bad it’s good!  It’s not going on my list of favorite films anytime soon, and I love 1950s B-movie SciFi camp.  If you haven’t seen it, it really is  good fun and worth a little over an hour of your time.

You can stream it for free with an Amazon Prime membership:
(click image to watch movie)

or you can watch it for free onYouTube:

 

So what do you think of Ro-Boy?  Any Sputnik Supplies aficionados out there?  And The Robot Monster?  Share your opinions about this movie and the collectible toy it inspired below!

Raising Modern Monster Kids

Can Today’s Kids Still Be Monster Kids?

The term ‘Monster Kid’ is widely applied to generations who grew up during the great monster craze that swept popular culture in America during the 1950s and 1960s.  I came of age in the 1970s and there are plenty of my generation who relate, and adopt, the moniker of Monster Kid as well.

Many of us Monster Kids are far from childhood in our age but have had the privilege of raising kids of our own.  Is it possible to raise modern Monster kids in the digital age?  This Monster Kid Dad is giving it the old college try, with some mixed results.

Through my series, Raising Modern Monster Kids. I’ll keep readers updated on this journey and share my successes – and failures – for all to enjoy.

This is what my 8 year old son wrote in school on Friday:

Raising Modern Monster Kids - 8 year old tells Godzilla's orignRaising Modern Monster Kids 8 year old draws Godzilla

 

As you can tell, my son loves Godzilla.  We saw Godzilla 2014 in the theater last summer and he loved it.  But that wasn’t the first Godzilla movie he saw.  No, Terror of Mechagodilla, King Kong vs Godzilla, Godzilla vs Mothra, Destroy All Monsters, Godzilla: Final Wars and Son of Godzilla all preceded the Legendary reboot in my son’s Godzilla movie viewing.  He’s 8 and he calls out the monsters as guys in suits, but once the giant monster brawls begin, he doesn’t care.

I really liked Legendary’s Godzilla  and I’m okay if this new version becomes my son’s preferred Godzilla.  He’ll have to make his own choices. All I can do is make sure he is exposed to the classic movies that inspired the reboot and hope that he falls for them like I did.

I’m optimistic that I can raise modern monster kids who love the new but treasure the classic.

This one is clearly in the ‘Win’ column!  Enjoy and Happy Memorial Day to all you Monster Kids — young and old!

Howl Through Wednesday with the Wolf Man Collectibles

 Wolf Man Collectibles to Help You Have a Howling Hump Day

The Wolf Man CollectionI’m a Wolf Man fan and have been all my life, so I thought I’d share a few pieces from my Wolf Man collection

Starting from the left, we have my custom clay Wolf Man face sculpture  (sans one fang) that I made in 4th grade art class — still love it in spite of it’s obvious amateur flaws

In the center, my 1963 Wolf Man Soaky from Colgate-Palmolive

On the right, my 2009 Funko Force Wolf Man (despite the fact that the package says “The Werewolf”)

We’re half-way through the week and that is enough to get me howling at the moon — have a great day!

What are your favorite Wolf Man collectibles?  Share them and stay away from the wolfsbane!

 

Classic Movie Posters Gallery – Attack of the 50 Foot Woman

Classic Movie Posters Gallery

Attack of the 50 Foot Woman Three Sheet Poster

(click image to enlarge)

Attack of the 50 Foot Woman (Allied Artists, 1958) Three Sheet (41″ X 81″)

This 1958 camp science fiction movie has the unique distinction of being considered one of the worst science fiction movies ever made and one of the most valuable movie posters of all time.

Released on May 19, 1958, Attack of the 50 Foot Woman has become a cult classic and has remained in the public eye largely due to this poster.  The poster is like a comic book cover with its over-the-top action combined with a powerful composition that draws the viewer in.  The poster is serious, while the sci fi romp it promotes is anything but.

artwork is by Reynold Brown.

A master of 1950s matinee movie art, Brown designed so many classic genre movie posters for science fiction and horror classics including Tarantula, House on Haunted Hill and Creature from the Black Lagoon.

I highly recommend the book Reynold Brown: A Life in Pictures to all fans and collectors of vintage movie poster art: 

No six-sheet was produced for this film, making this three-sheet the largest poster format available for this movie.

This poster goes for big bucks, ranking in the top 100 most valuable movie posters.  Heritage Auction sold a VF+ on Linen poster  at auction for $33,460.00 in 2014.

I enjoyed this film, but it isn’t one that I care to watch again anytime soon — too many other movies that I haven’t seen or love to watch again and again to spend time on this one.  That said, I appreciate the timeless appeal of this poster and love that it remains a pop culture icon, being parodied and replicated on every imaginable product.

Check out the the wide range of custom products on Etsy featuring this artwork.

And, of course, if you’ve never seen this movie, it’s worth watching once:

Related Articles:

Jakks 40-Inch Godzilla 2014 Action Figure – Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy Category

Collecting the Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy Category – Part 8

Jakks Pacific 4o” Godzilla Toy

It’s Monday and that means it’s time for another entry in my continuing series profiling all the nominees in the 2015 Rondo Awards.  With the one-year anniversary of Legends Godzilla, or Godzilla 2014 as it’s become known, hitting the theaters, we’re taking a look at the Jakks Pacific company’s 40″ Godzilla toy figure.

This blog is about collecting classic monsters and Godzilla is as classic as they come.  We can – and should– have lots of discussion about whether or not Godzilla 2014 is a classic movie.  I know Godzilla fans on both sides of that line.  While a new film like Legendary’s 2014 Godzilla will have supporters and detractors, there is no arguing that the monster itself is a classic — even if we disagree on whether the film is.  I, for one, liked the movie and am excited about the sequel.

Jakks 40-inch Godzilla 2014Jakks 40 inch Godzilla ToyJakks Pacific 40-inch Godzilla

What makes a monster classic?

One point I want to make very clear to my readers, classic is not the same as vintage. So I will frequently cover new and modern collectibles in this blog as is clearly the case with this entire series about Rondo nominees since they were all released in 2014.  I do, however, draw a line in terms of what is considered classic.  For purposes of scope, I consider Alien a classic.  And Jaws.  I believe new classic monsters are being created all the time, although time is exactly what determines a classic.

Monsters that stand the test of time — and survive reimagining and reboots, both good and bad, are a major determinate of a character’s legacy.  For Monster Kids, there is probably less disagreement about whether Dracula Untold was a good reboot than if Godzilla 2014 was. Although Toho’s announcement that they are getting back into the Godzilla movie business further fuels this debate.

Finally, there are plenty of classic monsters from not-so-classic films.  Many of the 1950s horror and sci fi films will never show up on the best movies ever made list, but for genre fans like myself, the monsters make the movies.   We appreciate a bit of camp and understand the impact of low-budgets– none of which make a film a classic for our purposes.

NOT classic monsters:

I don’t consider serial killers/slashers classic monsters –even with supernatural overtones like Freddy and Jason, and I won’t cover those characters here.  Clearly they’ve stood the test of time and are being rebooted by the movie making machine.  Plenty will disagree with me but my blog, my rules.  Now that that’s clear….back to our regularly scheduled broadcast!

Jakks 40″ Godzilla

Two points to make on this one:

1. This is a toy.

The category is called “Best Toy, Model, Collectible” and the nominees represented all three of those sub-categories quite well.  Frankly, it’s hard to compare a $200 limited edition maquette to a $10 toy on similar merits and I’d like to see the Rondo Awards merchandise categories expanded so that we can vote for like products in similar categories rather than make contrived comparisons.  This Godzilla figure may be collectible, but it is first and foremost a toy.  My 8 year old son loves to play with this guy.  He’s not getting anywhere near my limited edition collectibles but this one is built for roughhousing.  I’m sure he looks great on a collector’s shelf as well, but I like seeing him stomping lego sets and other action figures in my son’s room.  He’s also fairly priced at $50.

2. This is a HUGE toy.

We all no that Godzilla has gotten bigger with passing decades in the movies and this is one big toy.  At 3.5 feet long and 2 feet high, he dominates the play room.  As the King of the Monsters should!

Product Details: Jakks Pacific 40" Godzilla Toy in Box

  • 3.5 feet in length
  • 2 feet in height
  • MSRP $50
  • 12 points of articulation

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s a comprehensive video review go this toy by The Review Spot – you can visit their Youtube channel here.

 

Where to Buy Jakks Pacific 40″ Godzilla

While originally a Toys-R-Us exclusive, this toy is easy to find at local big box stores as wells on-line:

Amazon.com

Prices start at $39.99 + shipping and both the $0″ and 24″ figures are available: Jakks Pacific Godzilla Toys

eBay.com

Lots of auctions starting at reasonable prices like $19.99, so I definitely recommend checking eBay: Jakks Godzilla 40 inch

Entertainment Earth

Listed for $49.99
Godzilla 2014 Movie 24-Inch Action Figure
Order Godzilla 2014 Movie 24-Inch Action Figure from Entertainment Earth!


 

Summary

Godzilla is one of the most-merchandised of all the classic monsters. There are collectors who focus not just on Big-G, but on specific lines like X-Plus.  Godzilla is one of my favorite monsters and I love the Toho films.  My favorites are from the Showa era simply because those were the movies I saw growing up.  Sure, they were aimed at kids and more than a little campy, but that’s part of their appeal.  I enjoy watching these with my kids who also love them.

I am glad that we have a new updated Godzilla series that, in my opinion, has remained true in spirit to the original Toho films.  It’s not a guy in a suit stomping on model cities, but it honors the original story, captures some of the Godzilla as “terrible defender”  story lines from my favorite era, and introduced the King of the Monsters to a new generation of movie goers.

Time will tell if Godzilla 2014 is a classic, but there is no debate that this classic monster continues to be loved by collectors and kids alike.

So, in honor of the one-year anniversary of Godzilla, tonight we’ll sit back and watch this new-classic monster movie as a family and have fun — because, to me, that is what classic monster movies are all about.

Click the image below to watch it on Amazon Instant Video:

Frankenstein Friday!

The Monster gets his due with Frankenstein Friday

Frankenstein Friday

It’s Alive!  Alive!

Welcome to Frankenstein Friday, folks where the weekend comes to life and we put down our means of commerce to focus on friends, family and — for us Monster Kids — Frankenstein and friends!

Each week, I’ll feature ol’ Frankie in one of his multitude of forms and let you know where you can go to add him to your collection!  These will often be ads from our sponsors that you can click and buy — helps us pay the bills.  But looking is free so enjoy as you choose!

Today’s character collectible is alliteration at it’s finest with a Funko Frankenstein Figure:

Hanna-Barbera Frankenstein Jr. Pop!       Vinyl Figure

Hanna-Barbera Frankenstein Jr. Pop! Vinyl Figure Funko

From Hanna-Barbera‘s Frankenstein, Jr. and the Impossibles comes this Frankenstein Jr. Pop! Vinyl Figure! Frankenstein Jr. aka, “Frankie” stands 3 3/4-inches tall and looks just as you remembered him with his green superhero outfit with his “F” logo on his chest and is packaged in a window box.

Order Hanna-Barbera Frankenstein Jr. Pop! Vinyl Figure on Amazon

Have a good weekend everybody and celebrate well!

Distinctive Dummies Karloff Fu Manchu Figure– Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy Category

Collecting the Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy Category – Part 7

Distinctive Dummies Boris Karloff as Fu Manchu Mego-style Figure

This week’s entry in my continuing series profiling all the nominees in the 2015 Rondo Awards takes us out of the classic horror genre and into classic adventure with Boris Karloff as the notorious Dr. Fu Manchu.

Karloff Fu Manchu Distinctive Dummies Rondo Awards 2015 Best Toy nominee

 The first thing to note of this figure is it’s terrific resemblance to Boris in his role as Fu Manchu.  Compare the figure above to this image of Karloff as Dr. Fu Manchu that I found for sale on Amazon:

While I would like to have this figure with the infamous doctor’s smile on his face, I can’t find any real flaws in the sculpt.

Product Details:

  • Limited Edition:  100
  • 8″ Mego-style Figure
  • Individually had painted
  • Type S Bandless Body
  • Sculptor: Steve Thompson
  • Box art: Robert Aragon

The Boris Karloff Collection from Distinctive Dummies

This Fu Manchu figure is the third figure in the Boris Karloff series, which also includes:Distinctive Dummies Boris Karloff Series Fu Manchu, The Black Cat & The Raven

Here’s the company’s promo video with some fun clips from all these great Karloff films:

As of this writing, both the Black Cat and The Raven figures are still available at DistinctiveDummies.net 

About Distinctive Dummies

Distinctive Dummies creates numbered Limited Edition, retro styled 8″ inch action figures in the retro Mego-style.  The Mego Corporation was a toy company that dominated the action figure toy market during most of the 1970s. Responsible for such great 8″ Action Figures as The Mad Monsters, World Greatest Superheroes, Wizard of Oz and Planet of the Apes to name a few.  Distinctive Dummies also has a line of 12 inch figures.

 

Distinctive Dummies Facebook Page

About Mego

Distinctive Dummies makes Mego-style figures and, just in case anyone reading this is unfamiliar with Mego or the Mego style figure, it’s time to do your homework.  The first and last stop for all-things-Mego on the web is the site Megomuseum.com  — here’s a link to their post on the Boris Karloff as Fu Manchu figure.

The Mego Museum Facebook page is a great place to keep up on ‘real’ Mego figures as well as companies releasing new retro-style figures in the Mego tradition.

Where to Buy Distinctive Dummies Karloff Fu Manchu Figure

DistinctiveDummies.net

currently has all three figures available on their site for $80.

eBay

Current auctions for this toy on eBay


Summary

I’ve never really considered Fu Manchu movies to be in the horror genre, so I’m glad this one didn’t win the Best Toy/Model/Collectible category in this year’s Rondo Awards.  All three of the other figures in this collection from Distinctive Dummies are from truly classic horror films, and I could see myself voting for the Morgan figure in next year’s awards given the high quality and terrific likeness to Karloff that the previous three figures have had.

I grew up with Mego and they remain some of my favorite toys ever.  I’m glad to see so much activity from current companies making retro style figures in the Mego-style.  While these are clearly collectibles and not toys (I’m not giving my 8 year old son an $80 action figure anyway), the deep genre focus of these limited edition items are great for collectors of classic monsters.

Keep up the great work Distinctive Dummies and we’ll keep buying!