Sunday, 11 October 2015

Funko Mystery Minis: Cthulhu (Horror Classics Series 2)

Company: Funko
Series: Mystery Minis Horror Classics Series 2
Year: 2015

I stumbled across Funko’s initial series of Horror Classics Mystery Minis sometime last year in a hobby store in Sydney, but they didn’t grab me for a few reasons. Firstly, they were blind-boxed, which is fine (if not ideal) when something costs $2-5, but these were about $15 each. Secondly –and I may court some controversy here – as much as I liked the style, I don’t really know that the world needs another Freddy, Jason or Michael Myers collectible.

But when series 2 got announced earlier this year, I was intrigued. While it was covering a lot of the classics like Gillman and Frankenstein’s Monster (yes, I know we have plenty of collectibles for these two as well) it moved into less-merched territory too; An American Werewolf in London, Hellraiser, The Fly and the one and only ALFRED HITCHCOCK – YEAAAAAAH!

So when I was in Melbourne last weekend, I spotted these in Minotaur and though I’d take a plunge. The box felt heavy; I suspected it might be the Werewolf, titular star of An American Werewolf in London. That would have been pretty awesome, but I think it actually went one better – this box contained the literary horror icon Cthulhu!

I’ve talked elsewhere about Cthulhu’s backstory before, so I won’t repeat myself here. What we’re looking for here is a point of differentiation – if you have the POPs, do you need this guy? Well, he’s not a miniaturised version of the POP, for one thing – he’s been rendered in a totally different style, with the most obvious difference being the dragon-like tail. I’m not particularly familiar with Mystery Minis, but I do know that most of the lines Funko has released share a very similar cutesy aesthetic to one another. I quite like it myself – it’s gives them a maquette-like appearance, as though they were preliminary designs for a kid’s cartoon or something. This is a nice bit of consistency across collections, but of course your own opinion of this particular style will vary.     
Paint is not perfect, but it’s of a slightly better standard than his POP counterpart. Green is obviously the predominant colour, but he’s also been speckled with brown dots. It’s a simple touch, but one that prevents him from looking like a boring block of single colour. As before though, his mouth tentacles are the weak point; they’re a slightly lighter shade of green and I think they would have been better to stick with the same colour as the main body.

Cthulhu is packed in a 1/24 ratio – there’s only 12 boxes in a case, so theoretically you’d find him once in every two cases. There’s also a glow version, which is 1/36. This is a little annoying given the character’s popularity – after-market buyers are likely to pay through the nose for him. But spare a thought for Pinhead fans – he’s packed at a staggeringly low 1/72 ratio!

Overall, as with the POP versions, Cthulhu is ideal for anyone who needs to add some cosmic terror to their display shelf – even if H.P. Lovecraft would have hated the cutesiness of it himself. As for Funko Mystery Minis, I could see myself picking up another one or two. I have my eye on that Gillman and that Werewolf!

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