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What are the highest quality Fraggle plush?

Discussion in 'Fraggle Rock' started by lotusoftheleaf, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. lotusoftheleaf

    lotusoftheleaf Well-Known Member

    I'm going to buy some Fraggle plushes and I'd like to buy just one set. So far, I'm looking at the Manhattan Toys ones simply because it's the only set I've seen that includes poor, forgotten Mokey. :cry:

    These will be the first Fraggle plushes I buy, so I thought I'd ask some people who own them already what is the best quality line of the plushes? By that, I mean which plushes are best constructed and which resemble the actual Muppet Fraggles best.
    HubbaWhaFraggle likes this.
  2. Quazimoto

    Quazimoto Well-Known Member

    You'll probably get a few different opinions on this topic, but let me offer mine...

    Personally, I like the Hasbro Softies line of Fraggle Plushes from the mid 80s. Yes, they do have the gaping mouth thing, but they are also made from quality materials and IMO, truly capture the fun-filled spirit of the Fraggles.

    The Hasbro line includes the main Fraggle five, Uncle Traveling Matt, and two doozers. Some of the dolls are a bit difficult to come by and can get kind of expensive, but worth it. At least to me.

    You might also consider the TOMY Sprocket from the 80s. Again, kind of hard to come by and expensive when you do, but one like into his loveable eyes and you'll be bidding up a storm.

    As far as other versions of Fraggle Dolls. The Tomy plushes are relatively easy to come by, save for Mokey and Sprocket (and Uncle Matt to include his original hat, pack, and boots, which seem to be missing often). TOMY has the distinction of being closet to the real thing in terms of materials used to created the dolls. However, their heads seem quite small in relation to their bodies.

    The relatively recent Sabbaba plushes are pretty good as well, but there's not Mokey, Uncle Matt, or Sprocket available.

    The Manhattan Toys versions are pretty good overall, but each character has been a bit off in some ways. Not bad for the most part, but just lacking that extra magic that screams Fraggle Rock. That said, if I were to buy a second set myself (I do have the entire Hasbro Softies line + a TOMY Sprocket), which I do plan on doing one day, the Manhattan Toys versions are the ones I'd get.

    Hope that helps a bit.
    HubbaWhaFraggle likes this.
  3. Phillip

    Phillip Administrator Staff Member

  4. beakerfan76

    beakerfan76 Well-Known Member

    Since toys are an area I specialize in, I feel I should give my two cents.

    From my personal experience, I've only had a Sababa plush and Manhattan Toy one. They were both decent, each with their own quirks about them. That said, Sababa hit just a few more notes than MT. They got a few more details right than the others. Of course, I'm only talking about modern plushes.

    Some people prefer the older ones, more importantly, the Hasbro Softies line. Gaping mouths aside, I view them as an accurate model of the Fraggles. I'm sure there's a way to fix the mouth issue, but it isn't a real deal breaker. Besides, most of the likes are from nostalgia, people who might have had one of these when they were younger. I never had that luxury of being young in the 80's.

    Tomy deserves a mention as well, since they were the first company to make Fraggle toys. Honestly, it was a strong effort, but they were disproportionate and the material, though most accurate to the real puppets, could get ruined easily.

    Therefore, my preference to Sababa still stands, but if you can get another company's product for less, especially if it's older, go for it! MT's output is a bit overpriced by my standards anyway.
  5. Gonzo's Hobbit

    Gonzo's Hobbit Well-Known Member

    I have a question about the Manhattan Wembley doll. In the pictures I've seen his nose looks the same as all the other fraggles, not the knobby "different" nose that the character has. Is this just the picture angle and the plush really look right or does the plush look like the picture (if that sentence made sense to anyone?)
  6. lotusoftheleaf

    lotusoftheleaf Well-Known Member

    That was something I was wondering too, since every picture of the Manhattan Toy plushes I've seen is the exact same one. I did a Google image search and after looking through the same images many times (as well as some random images Google thought had something to do with Fraggle Rock, like a man in a donkey suit...) I found an image that shows the Wembley plush at an angle that lets us have a good look at the shape of his nose.


    I think he looks awesome and adorable, which is great because he was the first fraggle I intended to buy. Boober looks like his hair should be a little longer in front or something. I mean, I know the puppet doesn't have eyes, but his hair's supposed to kind of conceal that fact.
    HubbaWhaFraggle likes this.
  7. Gonzo's Hobbit

    Gonzo's Hobbit Well-Known Member

    Ah, much better. I guess Wembley looks okay. That picture certainly gives a better vantage point of his profile in my mind. Thanks for finding it.
  8. lotusoftheleaf

    lotusoftheleaf Well-Known Member

    You're welcome, Gonzo's Hobbit. :)

    Well, I just went ahead and order myself a Wembley. I decided to go with the Manhattan Toy plush because they're easy to find. The Sababa ones looked awfully nice too, but I absolutely must have all five of the main fraggles so no Mokey was a deal breaker. He was a little expensive but I have a $75 rebate card that's burning a hole in my pocket.

    Wembley should arrive at my house Monday at the latest. Maybe I'll take some pictures of him so anyone else interested can see him in more than just the same ol' pose. I'm sure I'll love him because, well, he's Wembley. How could I not? :coy:

    Oh, and thanks to everyone who provided me info!
    HubbaWhaFraggle likes this.
  9. beakerfan76

    beakerfan76 Well-Known Member

    It's always a pleasure. Just remember pics can be deceiving, like when I got Mokey. The real life counterpart is better than the stock image, though her hair could be a bit longer, much like Boober.

    Have fun with Wembley, anyway. I always liked him myself.
    HubbaWhaFraggle likes this.
  10. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    I've seen some of these at actual stores (not the easiest ones to find, since they're only available in educational stores in higher end neighborhoods), and they actually look pretty good in reality. Though, The Red is probably the best looking of the bunch. If some of the colors on the other characters weren't so off, things would be perfect... I'm really not a fan of the too dark red violet Gobo hair... I still haven't seen Mokey. And I agree they're a little pricey (though, Gund's larger Sesame Street plush cost just as much, actually...and they're a bit smaller) but tracking down older ones would possibly cost the same...

    I wish they'd consider smaller ones in scale with the first Sababa line so A) I can finish my set off with Mokey and Matt and B) they'd be a little cheaper and easier to access.
  11. Gonzo's Hobbit

    Gonzo's Hobbit Well-Known Member

    Yea, someone reviewed the Sababa Wembley doll and mentioned that they didn't like the hair color. I'm guessing that it's a lesser of two evils things with some of these dolls.

    Any idea why Mokey wasn't in the Sababa line? Did they just think that she wasn't that popular of a character of something?
  12. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    I'll answer both. Sababa's Wembley was made to give the illusion of the multicolored layered hair of the Puppet under studio lights...'

    sort of like this poser. It's sort of the same paradox as Gonzo's nose color... when the light hits it, it refracts and colors that weren't present can be seen. That's why one of the Palisades Gonzos (I forget which one) had various small color highlights of yellow and orange in it.

    Secondly, Mokey AND Matt were GOING to be made. Sababa had every intention of releasing one or two new smaller plush a year, and they even planned a larger Mokey, Boober, and (presumably) Matt with DVD's too. But the retailers weren't biting, and I don't think they could have made enough money to sell them exclusively online. So they WERE prototyped (at least Mokey)... one member actually claims to have seen it at a Toy Fair, but ... well, you are forbidden to take pictures in certain areas. Other than that, they Wanted to, the same way Palisades wanted to have Muppets series 10 and Sesame Street figures... we just didn't get them because of retail.
  13. beakerfan76

    beakerfan76 Well-Known Member

    I find it sad that retailers wouldn't think Mokey or Travelling Matt, let alone any other fraggle would sell. I mean look at all the other 80's franchises these stores had (Care Bears, Smurfs, My Little Pony, to name a few) and tell me they aren't marketable.

    Sorry, I just had to get that out of my system. As for Wembley, I don't have him yet, but I plan on getting him once I get a little cash. I'll let you guys know how he is when I get him.
  14. Gonzo's Hobbit

    Gonzo's Hobbit Well-Known Member

    I asked for Wembley for Christmas which is why I have been looking at them for a bit.

    As for the whole marketablility thing I hate to say this but if you were go out onto the street right now and mention the above brands to people, Fraggles would mostly likely draw the most blank looks (I say this because I actually did something similar to that once and got blank stares or people who just barely remembered what Fraggles were). Now if they had indeed been marketed in retail areas the it could have worked out that people would be more aware of them and I don't claim to be an expert at these things but that is my understanding of the situation at least.
    HubbaWhaFraggle likes this.
  15. lotusoftheleaf

    lotusoftheleaf Well-Known Member

    I came home tonight to find Wembley waiting for me! I took some pictures with him for you all to see how cute he is. I'm in them too because I took them with my laptop's built in camera and it was hard for me to stay out of the picture. I don't look the greatest because I just got home from work, but, oh well. Not like this is a submission for a beauty contest.

    From the front:
    From the side:
    And the back:
  16. Gonzo's Hobbit

    Gonzo's Hobbit Well-Known Member

  17. beakerfan76

    beakerfan76 Well-Known Member

    I guess it's safe to say I'm officially sold! :coy:

    Looks better than the stock pictures, and you're not bad yourself.
  18. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member

    To be fair, a LOT of 1980's comebacks didn't work so well at retail. He-Man didn't do so well, and they only made expensive collector's edition toys that were internet sales exclusives for a while. My Pet Monster went no where, Ultimate Muscle was a disappointment (and I would have gladly sold vital organs to buy them if they went beyond 12 figure sets... as it stood, I had to buy the last of the assortment from Canada)... Turtles managed to have a nice stay, but that's because 4Kids actually did a GOOD job marketing them (too bad Playmates continuously screwed up the line with useless variant figures)... but Turtles and Care Bears were the only massively successful ones.

    I don't count G.I. Joe (especially that it predated the 80's... that's just when they had the cartoon) and Transformers since those have solidly been around for years.

    But The Smurfs stuff really didn't sell as well as people tend to think, and the movie... gah.. that's not going to be successful. Plus, you realize that internationally, Smurfs came out in the 1960's, and is still beloved in Europe right there with TinTin. So Schliech has always produced figures.

    When the FR large plush hit Target, they had lots and LOTS of Reds on the shelves, but Wembley and Gobo managed to eventually sell. But if any problem was on Sababa's end, it's that they really should have released 3 medium plush a year instead of 2. That way we would have got Mokey and Matt... but let's not forget they ALSO made 3 Doozer plush (and figures) as well as a few other things. Too bad they didn't introduce Mokey in one of the other sets (the ones with DVD's... though they WERE planned).
  19. beakerfan76

    beakerfan76 Well-Known Member

    Forgive me for my ignorance, I was only about 10 or so when these toys were out. :o and even then, I only got back into FR last summer. :smirk:

    I knew Care Bears and TMNT were big sellers, but I also knew franchises like Ultimate Muscle were going nowhere (The cartoon was awful, to be fair).

    Like I said, the should have made the two, since they had prototypes and everything. Too bad there's no photos available, I'm curious as to how they looked.
  20. Drtooth

    Drtooth Well-Known Member


    The show was as good as it got since Toei edited the heck out of it and made it kid friendly. The comic book is far superior, as was the original Kinnikuman series.

    But with all the other garbage anime toy commercials we got in that era, it was a breath of fresh air. An actual series based on an actual comic that wasn't a toy first, and one where people wrestled each OTHER instead of hiding behind crap like monsters, tops, cards, stuff like that. You'll never find a greater enthusiast of the Kinnikuman legacy than myself, and it was one of the first animes I showed any major interest in before I got hooked on all the other stuff people aren't watching over here. And one could argue that was one of the few 4Kids dubs that was actually good. However, the cartoon was a moderate success, as it was a flop in Japan (again, the comic series was meant as an anniversary project for the older fans who grew up with the original in the 80's) 4Kids actually commissioned new episodes from Toei which tied up a very big loose end in the form of the Chojin Olympics arc that was never animated for the Japanese audience.

    That said, the link to M.U.S.C.L.E. was blurred because Bandai (the company that originally did the small plastic erasers of the characters, as well as other anime that Mattel used the molds of) decided to make the toys similar to the 1980's Kinnikuman line, and not like the more memorable in the US M.U.S.C.L.E. line.

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