Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Teacher Creature - Beetlejuice

Teacher Creature is a transforming (sort of) action figure from the Beetlejuice toy line. She's meant to look like a creepy old lady. She has a very squat stature and is dressed in pink and purple. She has an ugly face with a gaping mouth and pointy glasses. She has large boney hands and wears a cape that is pink on one side and black and white on the inside.



 When you press down on her head she becomes a little more squat and "ears" come out of the top of her head. Her arms get released converting them from human looking arms into bat-like arms. Her cloak becomes batwings.


If you squeeze her bat-ears, her feet squeeze together and allows her to hold her apple core accessory.


When you release the ears her feet spread out again and she drops her apple bomb. This must be a huge insult in the afterlife.



Here are the instructions from Teacher Creature's card back that show how to transform her,


Teacher Creature is not based on any character from the Tim Burton film. I don't recall this character being in the Beetlejuice cartoon, although it's possible, This figure reminds me a lot of the Real Ghostbusters figure, Granny Gross. I don't think this figure is executed quite as well. Teacher Creature has no real articulation other than her transformation sequence. No elbow, knee, or neck articulation. She looks kind of cool displayed in bat mode.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

California Raisins - The Horn Section

More California Raisins from my childhood collection. Today I'm focusing on the Horn Section of the band. First up is a Raisin blowng on a trumpet. After him comes two Saxophone players.The first sax Raisin is wearing a beret and has blue eyelids. He's also from the larger scale Raisins. The second sax player is of the smaller size and less distinguishing features. You may notice the trumpet player is wearing blue sneakers while the other two Raisins have black and white dress shoes.



The final California Raisin in the this post may or may not be a knock-off. I bought him at a fair as a kid, and may be the only Raisin in my collection that wasn't second hand. He is also the only one that is not a a solid PVC figure. He has a hollow body which makes me think he was blow molded. His hands are hard plastic and attached to flexible wires covered in a braided cloth. His feet are also articulated. They can swivel at the ankle. He had a Saxophone glued in his gripping hand when I bought him. Over time I wiggled it loose. This gave me even more play possibilities, but unfortunately I eventually lost the horn.


Harry the Haunted Hunter - Beetlejuice

Yesterday I picked up a Harry the Haunted Hunter from the first wave of Beetlejuice figures. This figure is very similar to all the other figures in the line. They all pretty much have 5 points of articulation, removable heads, an action feature, and a little Beetlejuice creature. Harry is dressed in a tan (khaki) outfit and is wearing a hat with an arrow though it. Harry comes with a little spider version of Beetlejuice and a goofy rifle. The rifle looks like an elephant gun with a trumpet mute jammed in the end.


 When you remove Harry's head we get to see him as he appears in the Tim Burton film. Through amazing special effects, Harry with his shrunken head is one of the most memorable unimportant characters in the film. Harry also has a lever on his back that makes his head slid down inside his torso. I'm not exactly sure what the point of this feature is.


The little Beetlejuice spider actually  fits onto the end of the rifle. His normal head can also attach to the gun. I feel like if I had this figure years ago when my buddies and I were making our animated series, Animation Creation, I would have done an animation with this figure to the Beatles song Bungalow Bill.


In the package the lever on Harry's back was taped in the up position. I removed the tape and his shrunken head instantly falls inside his torso. I put the tape back on so that I could take these photographs.


Here's the top corner of Harry's card back. It shows how all his features work,


Monday, April 21, 2014

Flea Market Finds #21

On Easter morning I went out to flea market with my usually crew. It's pretty fun to see the three of us getting breakfast at McDonald's and then rummaging around at the flea market. Ray is in his 70's, Dave is in his 50's and I'm in my 30's  We really are from three different generations. Ray and Dave are hunting for tools. I look for tools as well as toys. Traffic at the flea market was pretty steady, but not packed like an average Sunday. I ran into a few of my toy collector friends that I usually run into, no mater what flea market we go to. A few of my friends cover a lot of ground each weekend.

I found two carded action figures from the Beetlejuice line. Neither one of the cards was perfect, in fact the one bubble was starting to detach. The lady was selling a lot of "cutesy" horror stuff like Nightmare Before Christmas and Beetlejuice. I was worried she was going to think they were valuable collectibles. I asked the price and she said $5 for the pair. Okay, I can do that.


I picked up Harry the Head Hunter, who is a minor character from the film and part of the first wave of action figures. I also go Teacher Creature, who was not in the film. After the first wave, which were true movie toys the line expanded into very strange ways and unfortunately many characters from the film were never made.


The card backs here show how many more products they had on the cross sell.  Harry's package only has six figures and a few additional items. Teacher Creature shows off twelve figures and lots of additional items including vehicles.



I also saw two Bucky O'Hare figures I wanted to pick up, both loose with no accessories, but the dealer wanted ten bucks for the pair. I'm cheap when it comes to loose figures like that. No thanks.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

More Califonia Raisins

I got up early this morning to hit the flea market. I bought two toys which I planned to post about today. I ended up photographing them and a bunch of other toys I've been sitting on for a while. I have to clean up my toy room because I have a couple people coming out to give me quotes on carpet. I was planning on posting a Flea Market Finds post, but I'm tired. I'm going to bed... so a quickly post.

Here are four more of my PVC California Raisins figures. As I've stated before I used to hunt these guys down at yard sales as a kid. I started just collecting the dancers and band members. Eventually I expanded to all the Raisins. As their popularity grew the range of poses and props expanded for these little plastic dudes.
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First up, we have a big surfer wearing orange sunglasses and sneakers holding a blue and yellow surfboard. Accompanying him is a female Raisin in a hula skirt. I really don't remember there being very many female figures.


Next up is a Raisin wearing matching yellow sunglasses and sneakers. He's holding a blue boom box up to the side of his head. This figure cracks me up. Now every kid walks around listening to ear buds, but we thought it was cool to carry boom boxes on our shoulders back in the day.


Okay, the final Raisin in today's post is a smaller surfer figure. I'm not sure why they made Raisins in two different scales, but there are big ones and small ones. He's wearing red and his board is solid yellow. This Raisin has an unusual stance and he is a little off balance.

Well... I'm off to bed.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Spider Bytez - Nick TMNT

Spider Bytez is one of the mutants created for the modern Ninja Turtles cartoon on Nickelodeon. He's one of the goofier looking characters in this series. He has a large round body with short stumpy arms and legs. Spider Bytes also has four long spider legs coming out of the top of his head. Each of these little arms has a hing joint in the center and a ball joint at the base. Other than that, Spider Bytez really doesn't have much articulation.


He is molded in black plastic and is decorated with a few other colors. He has some small red paint apps on his face and arms. He has large white teeth and green tips on each of his spider arms. He's a really fun toy, but really small compared to the Turtles.


Friday, April 18, 2014

Cyclops - MU First Class

This Cyclops figure is based on the X-Men First Class comic book series, which were modern comics set during the early years of the X-Men team. I really loved that comic series. Cyclops came in a two pack with Jean Grey and an issue of the First Class comic. Check out this snow picture post to see the Jean Grey figure.

Cyclops is dressed in a blue and gold uniform. He has an X-logo on his waist, but his uniform has very few other details. Like just about every Marvel Universe Cyclops figure, one of his hands is posed to make it look like he is activating his visor.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Scribblenauts Unmasked Series 2 - DC Mini-Figs

I previously posted about the video game inspired Scribblenauts Unmasked DC comic figures. I bought several figures from Series 1 trying to get Vampire Batman. Unfortunatly I wasn't able to buy the right blind box. Tonight I was at my local comic shop and I saw Series 2 was now out and Bane was one of the figures in this wave. Of course, I got to get Bane!


These little goofy cartoon versions of DC Comic characters come in blind boxes and include little figure stands that look like spiral notebooks.. I bought four packs and scored four different characters.


I was super happy to pick up Bane. He looks great, and is a little bulkier than many of the other characters. The purple monster with headphones is one of mystery figures who is blacked out on the packaging. In the first wave it was a little dude in a Green Lantern suit wearing headphones. Let me know if this guy is based on an actual DC Character.


 I also got the late 90's red lightning Superman. I really don't know what the storyline was when Superman became a blue or red energy elemental.I also picked up the modern Blue Beetle. I'm really happy with Bane, but I don't really care about any of the other three figures.



Wednesday, April 16, 2014

California Raisins

I am a huge fan of stop motion animation and a child of the 80's. So naturally, as a kid I loved the California Raisins. I watched the cartoon and had a ton of PVC mini-figs. Below you will see a small piece of my California Raisin collection. I used to by PVC Raisins and Tasmanian Devil figures at flea markets when ever I'd find them as a kid.


I have two similar but slightly different lead singer figures. I'm not sure if they are truly different, or if the microphone arm on the one is wrapped. Below you can see my collection of "dancing" Raisins. I have three identical "peek-a-boo" figures. One larger one dancer, and my favorite figure in this post is the Raisin with sunglasses.



Monday, April 14, 2014

Mulan - Disney

It's funny how when you are a kid you've seen every kids movie, then you sort of loose touch until you have your own kids. In the late 90's, Disney movies were kind of hit or miss for me. I've never seen Hercules or the Emperor's New Groove. I did however see Mulan. My buddy's Dad bought the movie on Laser Disc. It was a decent film, but having only scene it once, I don't have all the songs memorized or anything. I was a freshman in high school when it came out. When I'm working at the Haunted Hayride each fall, the kids that work there are mostly 10 years younger or more than mysel. They occasionally break into song from the film. It kind of cracks me up.


Anyway, I bought this Mulan figure at a yard sale one time. She was a Happy Meal toy back in '89.  Mulan is a pretty basic figure, but comes with two interesting accessories that allow her to be both a princess and a warrior. Mulan came with a cloth skirt and a set of plastic armor. Both accessories are easy enough to slip on and off to make the transformation. I bought her thinking I might be able to use her as a civilian girl in an animation sometime. Back when my friends and I were making our animated series, Animation Creation we often needed generic people for animations.