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Action Figures Series 7
Rollins (March 16, 2004) - After a long wait, the first
new Palisades Muppet action figure series of 2004 is finally here. Series
7 consists of: Kermit
as Captain Smollet, Frog Scout Robin, Beauregard and three versions of
Johnny comes in his signature pinstripe suit, a silver suit and a burgundy
out when the next Palisades Muppet figures will debut on the Palisades
as Captain Smollet
Accessories: Polly Lobster, Hat, Sword, and Sword Sheath
Great likeness/sculpt, fun accessories, impressive articulation
for the Frog.
Polly is unarticulated, but still has a great sculpt.
just unleashed its seventh wave of Muppet action figures, and it’s
headed up by a two-pack of Kermit as Captain Smollet and Polly Lobster.
They’re both from “Muppet Treasure Island,” and
both are a welcome addition to my collection. They were preceded
almost a year ago by Sam Eagle as Samuel Arrow, and he’s been
looking kind of silly in his 18th Century British Navy outfit with
all the other Muppets on my shelf…but now that Captain Smollet
has arrived, Sam fits in beautifully.
Kermit-as-Smollet figure is as detailed as the other Palisades Kermit
figures we’ve seen, and has a few extra features that put
him a step above others. His naval coat has a woven texture distinct
from his waistcoat and breeches, and the paint of the gold trim
is applied well, with none of the slop that some other series have
had. He’s got a magnetic captain’s hat. His gray ponytailed
wig covers the magnet nicely, leaving a seamless cabeza for Captain
Smollet figure, although he looks kinda stuffy, is ready to swashbuckle
with the best of them: he’s got shoulder, bicep, elbow, wrist,
neck, knee, and hip ball joints. He can be put in a number of positions,
and when you throw in his accompanying sword and scabbard, he’s
ready to take on the pirates.
a small pirate is packed in with Smollet, so he’s got someone
to skewer. This particular pirate is named Polly, and although with
a name like that, you’d expect Polly to be a parrot…he’s
a lobster. Polly’s a non-articulated figure, which would normally
bug me, but the sculpt on this pirate is so detailed, and the figure
is so small anyway, that I’m just happy to see him with the
frog. The lobster stands on his hind legs, and wears buckled shoes,
cut off shorts, and has various piercings…and even has a patch
riveted to his shell. One of his pincers was lost in a shady deal
of some kind (it probably involved a nice buttery sauce), and has
been replaced with a silver hook. He’s a great addition to
the action figure—giving you two small, piratey, strangely
dressed animals for the price of one. And who doesn’t want
Accessories: Microphone, Barstool, Picture Frame, Vinyl Record and
Stunning likeness, great accessories.
Promoting Italian American Stereotypes. But hey, who
When I first
heard Palisades Toys was making a Johnny Fiama action figure, I
thought “I’d really rather have another Kermit. Or Piggy.
Or Gonzo.” I’m officially eating my words.
given us three different outfits and sets of accessories for Johnny.
The first is the signature version, wearing a pinstripe suit; the
other two include a sharkskin suit and a more casual smoking jacket.
I plan on getting all three, but the one I bought first is the pinstripe
In the course
of making an action figure, there are many things that can go wrong—with
Johnny, everything seems to have gone right. The likeness on his
face—the arrogant expression with a raised eyebrow, the somehow
lipless Muppet lips, the chin, his slicked back salt and pepper
hair—all exquisite. His stance is perfect for his lounge singing,
down to his pinkies held out, better to see his pinky rings. His
pinstripe suit is painted perfectly—a problem I was expecting
to see after a few other Palisades paint mishaps. Everything from
the collar pin and tie tack to the tassles on his shoes—pure
articulation is better than you’d expect for a guy in a suit—ball
jointed shoulders and hips, jointed knees, elbows, wrists, and bicep.
My favorite joint may be his neck, giving him more emotion for those
really deep songs like “Monkeys in the Night.”
accessories complete his ensemble—he comes with a microphone,
bar stool, framed picture and record album. Like his suits, the
accessories come in three different styles. The pinstripe version
comes with a framed, autographed picture of Johnny himself. Other
versions come with framed photos of his Ma (Mama Fiama) and his
monkey, Sal. The record comes with a removable cardboard sleeve,
and there are three different records for the three different Johnnys.
The pinstripe album is “Johnny We Hardly Heard Ya: -- a Rowlf
Records release. Songs include “I Left My Wallet in San Diego,”
“The Very Thought of Me,” and “Steppin’
Out With My Monkey.” A great addition to the figure, making
him a little more real—and funny—than he’s ever
been to me.
The only thing
wrong with my Johnny Fiama action figure is that he doesn’t
have his monkey Sal with him. The two of them are inseparable—it’s
like having Statler without Waldorf, or Bunsen without Beaker. Hopefully
before too long Sal will be joining his boss with the rest of the
Muppets on my shelf. Until then, this sallow-skinned, martini-soaked
goombah will have to sing alone. Or maybe the Electric Mayhem and
Rowlf will let Johnny jam with them.
Opening Backpack, Campfire, Marshmallow Stick, Trail Mix, Travel
Trunk, Sticker Sheet and Frog Scout Manual
The first appearance of Kermit's nephew, some great accessories
No sitting action, non-removable hat
Now that Robin
has finally made an appearance in Palisades’ line of Muppet
action figures, I feel like a big (or little) gap in that collection
to make Robin in his Frog Scout uniform is one that I didn’t
like; I would have preferred a signature “naked” version
of Robin—the way we saw him most. After getting the toy and
playing with it, there are several things about the Frog Scout version
that made me see why Palisades may have gone this route.
Robin is tiny—one
of the smallest Muppets, and the figure is only about three inches
tall. Because he’s so small, some details seem exaggerated—most
prominently, his bulgy froggy eyes. They seem a bit too bulgy, almost
full spheres atop his green little head. Like a “Manga”
Robin. The rest of his sculpt seems to be right on, although his
legs seem a little long. It’s hard to gauge, since Robin is
usually shown with his legs folded up under him…not standing
up like the figure.
uniform has all of the obligatory Frog Scout details—a little
yellow and green kerchief, a “Pond 4” shoulder patch
on his left shoulder, and a round yellow patch on his right shoulder.
He’s topped off by a green cap—most of the Muppet figures
have had removable hats with magnets keeping them in place, Robin’s
is permanently affixed. I would have rather seen him with a magnetic
cap, but he may just be too small for the implant.
he’s small, Robin’s got nothing to be ashamed of in
the articulation department. His head, hips, and waist are all jointed,
plus he has ball-jointed shoulders and swivel joints where his arms
and legs meet their sleeves and pants. This means he can do many
things…the one thing he really can’t do is sit.
Like many short
characters, Robin makes up for his height with a huge package of
accessories. He comes with a large green steamer trunk (big enough
to put him in, if you’re so inclined), a campfire of logs
ringed by rocks, a rubbery bag of trail mix, a backpack, Frog Scout
Handbook, and marshmallow-toasting stick. Of these, the backpack
is really nifty, because it opens to hold the book, and has rubbery
straps flexible enough for Robin to really carry it. The marshmallow
stick has three marshmallows on it, with one side already toasted.
The Frog Scout Handbook opens and closes, but doesn’t have
any writing or diagrams in it—after Dr. Bunsen Honeydew’s
informative tic-tac-toe games, I was hoping for more. There are
also some stickers included with the figure, and these are fun—there’s
a Fly-Catching Merit Badge, Punk Merit Badge (in tribute to the
Debbie Harry episode of The Muppet Show), and best of all, a “Frogger”
inspired Dodging Traffic Merit Badge.
I look forward
to a naked little frog being a part of my collection someday, but
if they had put out the naked “signature” version of
Robin, he wouldn’t have come with these great accessories,
and more importantly, probably wouldn’t have had the articulation
joints that Frog Scout Robin is able to disguise in his clothes.
Rumor has it
that we’ll be seeing a Scoutmaster Kermit before too long—and
that would be a great companion piece for this figure. So would
a John Denver action figure—but I won’t hold my breath
Hat, Mop Bucket, Mop Wringer, Mop and Broom
Great sculpt, disturbingly accurate accessories, obscure
Not much articulation...but he's got enough for his job.
Now that all
of the A and B-list characters from The Muppet Show have been made,
Palisades is going a step further, and giving us (well, SELLING
us) figures of characters I never thought I’d see. One of
those is the genial, somewhat dim, strong as an ox stagehand, Beauregard.
I’m pretty sure Beauregard is a mole. Maybe. He’s brown
and furry with squinty eyes.
The action figure
itself is outstanding, but, as with many of the Muppet action figures,
it’s put over the top with highly detailed accessories. More
on those later. Bo is one of the larger, heftier Muppets. He’s
comparable in size to the Fozzie Bear and Sam Eagle figures and
I find having these larger characters mixed in with the smaller
ones makes for a dynamic display. Bo’s wearing light gray
pants and a work jacket. I appreciate the extra detail in the texturing
of his pants—there’s nothing quite like the texture
of double-knit polyester.
face seems it would be harder to get right than some of the other,
more elementary Muppets, and Palisades nailed it. He doesn’t
have a conventional “Muppet nose” and it’s more
subtle than other characters—but it looks perfect. He’s
got a sort of “beetle brow” that shades his eyes, and
his blue eyes have just the right focus to be sincere, hopeful…but
not quite getting it. His hair and the collar of his jacket are
made of a softer PVC plastic that leaves them flexible and much
more “Muppety” than earlier figures had, and his now-standard
magnetic cap tops Bo quite nicely. It hangs a bit far forward when
on straight, but if you make it a little crooked, it’s perfect.
doesn’t have the joint articulation that some of the other
Muppet figures have had, but I don’t anticipate him needing
it, either. The most important points of articulation for him are
in his arms, and he’s got those: shoulder, bicep, elbow, and
wrists. Palisades has ensured that he’ll be able to do what
he does best: sweep.
me to his accessories. The toy gets saddled with what should by
all rights be the lamest accessories of all time…but are somehow
the coolest. A broom, mop, and bucket. They don’t scream “Make
toys out of ME!” but buddy, they’re awesome. The broom
is a standard push broom, nearly as tall as Bo, and he’s able
to hold it perfectly against the floor with both hands. And the
broom is nice—the plastic is a little more pliable than other
accessories, so you can fit it into his paw-hands without snapping
it in two. The real highlight is the mop and bucket. Really. Sometimes
toy accessories are cartoony, but Palisades usually opts for more
realistic pieces. These look like they got put in a miniaturization
machine and shrunk down to a six inch scale. The mop has individually
sculpted strands, gray and frayed from months of use, all in a soft
plastic that flexes just enough. The bucket has working casters,
a metal handle, and wringer apparatus that perches on one end. All
of it has just enough schmutz that it looks dirty, but not neglected.
short, this is a great, obscure Muppet character who has a lot of
appeal. Collectors should snatch him up, and more casual fans (or
doll/dollhouse collectors) should give him a second look. If you
ever needed a big guy with very little brain, Beauregard could be
the guy for you. If you can handle a hairy back.