Butt Ugly Martians
A new cartoon called Butt Ugly Martians has
gotten its own line of figures - big surprise there. After seeing
early pictures of these last summer, I had high hopes.
There are three main Martians.
They were sent to this planet to destroy it - only problem is they
really like Earth and don't want to. The aliens are led by
Commander B-Bop-A-Luna. He is backed up by Cheif Tech Officer
2T-Fru-T, and Do-Wah-Diddy. The leader back on Mars is Emperor
Bog, who wants to take over the Earth. The Martians interact with
a number of humans, including Angela, Mike, and Cedric, three
kids. There is of course Dog, and the Martian hunter Stoat Muldoon.
And finally, there is Dr. Damage, who makes all kinds of nasty devices
for Emporer Bog.
They've made 5 carded figures, each
selling for about eight bucks. They cover the three main Martians,
and two of the humans, Stoat and Mike. They also have four
robot/figure two packs, covering the three main Martians again, and Dr.
Damage. These two packs retail for around $15.
I bought and opened the Dr. Damage/robot
set, and the Commander B-Bop/robot sets. The only difference
between the carded Martians, and the boxed ones with the robots are the
paint ops. The regular Martians are about 4 1/2" tall,
although Dr. Damage is closer to 5 1/2".
Packaging - ***
Both the carded figures and the box figures have decent packaging.
The art is okay, and the boxes are even collector friendly, if you don't
mind a lot of twisty ties.
The sculpting is very nice, although most cartoon characters are simpler
to do than actual people. They capture the look of all the
characters, and they style and design of the overall cartoon is pretty
The only real
negative is that there is very little difference in the look of the three
main Martians. Even Dr. Damage is only slightly different. But
from the limited exposure I've had to the cartoon, they do capture the
source material extremely well.
The paint ops seem a bit hit and miss. The work on all the heads and
faces that I saw looked good, but the paint work on some of the body
details was sloppy. Since the paint ops are different for the carded
figures from these, it was a little more obvious as well.
bodies themselves all appear to be cast in the appropriate color plastic,
and some figures like the good doctor, have less detail.
Overall, the articulation is good. Dr. Damage has far less
articulation than the others, and I'm not sure why. Perhaps his
design didn't lend itself to the same type of joints. He only has
neck, shoulder and waist.
Be-bop and the rest have ball jointed shoulders, ball jointed hips, neck,
knees and elbows. If the line had been more consistent, this score
would have been higher.
The carded figures are pathetically short on accessories. They all
come with a blaster, which is identical from one to the other. The
projectile is slightly different for each, but it's still a pretty poor
excuse for an accessory.
same blaster comes with the Be-Bop/robot two pack. I'll count the
robots as the accessories with these two packs, which helps the score
quite a bit.
robots are both articulated, although not too greatly. Dr. Damage's
bot has shoulders and hips, while Be-Bops has shoulders and wrists.
robot with Dr. Damage also has a spring action weapon which fires fairly
well, and when you push the face inward, the arms pop off.
robot is designed to hold the Commander inside (as are the other robots
for the main Martians). It's an idea that sounds better than it
works. The helmet comes off, and from the front it looks pretty good
when he's inside. But his legs and arms have to stick out the back
of the robot, since he's not really large enough to hold the figure.
is a big negative, since with just some simple redesigning they could have
easily gotten the figure to fit.
Why do toy companies think these average licensed lines are worth $8 or
more? The price for the single figures is at least 20% too high, and
the robot two packs aren't worth more than $10. With these kinds of
prices, the odds that people will pick up more than one or two figures is
The high price is a big detractor, but the poor accessories
didn't help. If the robot had been more articulated OR if the figure
would have fit inside better, I would have been much happier. But
they still have great sculpting, and the articulation is very good for
to Buy -
Wal-mart seems to be getting these first, but I bet Toys R Us is right
around the corner as well.
Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.