September 30, 2014


I have to admit, one awesome thing I liked about 90's toys, and maybe late 80's too, was the tongue-in-cheek gross-out humor.  They used it all:  boogers, vomit, guts, slime, crap, farts, and probably a lot more.  Maybe I was younger and a lot less mature and just naturally found that stuff enjoyable and funny, but maybe I was a little weird too.  Now, I have even less of an excuse, but still some new toy lines are released to get into.

I came late to the party, but apparently the die-hard crowd of Garbage Pail Kids shouted at Topps over the years, and finally the collectible card company gave in.  GPK was back, with cards and Minikins, a cool blind-bag set of minifigures, inspired by their retro Cheap Toys line.

For those uninitiated, blind-bags are products that give you a certain amount of figures inside, but what figures they are in the set is random.  GPK was pretty smart in including just about every sort of variant.  Painted for those who like that, monochromatic versions for those like me, and ultra mega turbo rare black monochromes for those completionists out there.

Making it's way around the states now is a new toy line called Slimy Sludge.  Slimy Sludge is a blind-bag minifigure set with two separate collections.  There's the Rotten Zombies that come in a purple plastic and the sludge monsters that come in green.  Also, there is an interesting twist:  the bags are also filled with old-school slime, just like you'd get in gumball machines back in the day.

Even with the small paint detail, I can't wait to see them around, even if it's just more popular on second markets like Ebay.  Apparently, they are from a larger set from a European country that also has slimy fish, robots, and a few others that escape me now.

I'm not sure why I love the gross-out stuff, but it's tons of fun to me.  I guess they just scream of old school toy lines, and I hope it catches on.

September 28, 2014

The Perfect Keshi?

With the release of the Mutant Mania minifigures, by Moose Toys, I figured it was a good time to explain some common qualities some collectors favor over than others.  Keep in mind, no one collector feels the same, but these are certainly my guidelines and I think I may be in a majority.  I don't think it's anything about taste, but being able to keep a collection uniformed.

Size.  Most keshi are an inch and a half to two.  They certainly can get a little larger, and if they do, it's no a deal-breaker, but some collectors like me will only follow toy lines with smaller and more familiar scaled minifigures to classic lines.

Paint.  Believe it or not, it's not a matter of paint being well-done or poorly, but a matter of painted or unpainted.  Because classic lines came without paint or applied details, some collectors are turned off by paint application.

Articulation.  Much like paint opinions, classic lines had no articulation.  They were "slugs" or single mold castings, and how they are released from the mold is how they are.  They are figures that are in one solid chunk.

Of course there are exceptions, and every collector is different.  Moose Toys creates some cool lines.  For example, I collect their Trash Pack minifigures despite them being a little small and painted, but I think I am going to pass on Mutant Mania, which is unfortunate.  They are clearly inspired by old cool lines like Kinnikuman, but they are too different for me to dive in.  If they were single mold, I think I would have.  To be honest, the stretchy spine component was the deal-breaker for me, but I'll certainly look forward to see what they release next.

September 27, 2014

OMFG Series 4 on Kickstarter NOW!

Now I enjoyed my Monster in the Pocket toys when I was a child, but it wasn't until last January I found October Toys, by chance, surfing the net, I fell back into collecting minifigures.  October Toys is a small Southern California company that does their own minifigures, as well as blogs and events.  One of their lines is OMFG, Outlandish Mini Figure Guys, use designs and sculpts from submissions from other artists on the website.  A very cool scene, indeed.

OMFG is now funding their 4th series on Kickstarter.  Take a look!  It's very cool stuff!

As of this very second, there is still plenty of time to back it, if you wish. (20 days left)  Or spread the word to people you think may be interested.

Check out the Kickstarter here!

September 26, 2014

Introductions and WTF!

I'm SpiderEarth, keshi collector, and I feel I must be the last one to do be doing this, whether that's the last blog to be created on the net or last person to join the toy collecting scene.  In fact, this sort of feels late in my experience as a new collector of minifigures.  I've been doing this for the last nine month heavily, with pretty much the new year being an accidental new beginning of an old obsession.  Since then, I've amassed what I would believe is a serious collection, but keep in mind, I'm the last person in line.  I've only been doing this for nine months.  There are others that would eclipse my collection and their wide knowledge of obscure keshi information is astounding.  However, I've helped a person or two on a forum identifying a mysterious keshi, but let me explain what keshi is first.

Keshi are generally small, one inch to two tall, monochromatic, rubber minifigures.  They originated in Japan in the late 70's/ early 80's.  The name keshi is actually a Japanese word that described what they were generally made out of.  Keshi for short, keshigomu were "rubber gum" figures and also referred as "eraser gum"figures, however they were rarely soft to be used like that.  They were random gumball prize, or pachi overseas, and were made of a variety of colors and polymers.

Japan's most popular keshi franchise is Kinnikuman, or M.U.S.C.L.E. to the states.  They were small pink wrestling figures with the flair of strange, out of this world, fantasy and humor.  They, along with bootlegs, started to appear in gumball machines in the states in the mid to late 80's, however it wasn't completely successful.  Keep in mind, this was during giant toy booms like He-Man, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and the like.  Kinnikuman felt strange, maybe too strange, having swam across the sea with very little information.  Japan had anime shows, conventions, a full line of merch, and more to help understand the line, where the states barely had the figures alone.

It wasn't until the 90's where Monster In My Pocket started hitting toy shelves.  MIMP was an American product, sold by Mattel, and they looked to replicate Kinnikuman's boom in Japan here at home.  They made neon monsters and mythical beasts out of softer material than in other lines.  As far as keshi toys lines in America was concerned, Monster In My Pocket was a success, however only putting out a handful of sets.  Despite that, their figures are sometimes the most coveted among American collectors.

In the states at least, the fad died off for a very long time.  I'm uncertain about it's presence in Japan during the last twenty years or so, but it felt to me, all of sudden the fad was back.  All the kids that collected all these strange little rubber figures were adults, hitting ebay and looking to feed their nostalgia.  Some even became talented enough to create their own lines from their own creativity.  The southern California art toy scene is one of the most interesting ones in the states, followed by the artists in New York, but like I discovered last January, the hobby is back with a vengeance.

There are many different keshi toy lines out there, and more and more amazing artists are breaking through the scene, both American and Japanese.  I've only been here for a short time so far, but I may be looking at +500 minifigures in my collection so far, with no stop anytime soon.  The new minifigure scene is live and well, maybe better than it was in the 80's and 90's, and I look forward to record my thoughts along the way.