H.R. Pufnstuff

Old TV shows are hot, and it's not surprising that we are seeing these old licenses being mined by the many smaller toy companies fighting for market share right now.  One of the nicest sets so far is this one done by Living Toys (and Art Asylum) for the Sid and Marty Krofft show, H.R. Pufnstuff.  The big dragon in the cowboy boots was a favorite during the 70's, and this line has done an excellent job capturing their spirit.  Four figures are in the line - H.R. himself, Cling and Clang, Sigmund the Sea Monster, and Electra Woman (not pictured). 

 Articulation - **
Nothing special here, and it's actually lacking quite a bit.  It varies by figure - Cling and Clang only have the standard five points, while H.R. include's cut joints at the wrists to boost him to seven, and Sigmund has one on every tentecle - but overall, the amount of articulation could have been improved. 



Packaging - ***
For a smaller action figure line, this is some great packaging.  It is designed to resemble and old TV, rabbit ears and all.  As always, I'd prefer a design I can open and close, but if you're limited to a standard bubble packaging, you can't do much better than this.

Sculpting - ***1/2
I could argue that sculpting 'cartoon' characters is far simpler than sculpting 'real' people, and I think I'd be right.  But Art Asylum has done a terrific job capturing the look, scale and feel of these characters, and I can't fault them on style or talent.

Paint - ***1/2
All the figures I've seen have been extremely neat and clean.  No sloppy lines or poor application on any of the lot - good quality control and manufacturing!

Accessories - **
The detail on what's here is nice, but there isn't much.  Each figure comes with a stand, and something more specific to their character - H.R. has his cowboy hat, Sigmund a lobster, and Cling and Clang a STOP sign.  At an $8 - $10 price point (depending on where you buy) I'd like to see a little more.


Overall - ***
If you're a big fan of the 'Stuff, these will look terrific on your shelf.  Take them to work, put them out, and folks will be talking all day about the show they remember from their childhood.  I hear a second assortment is possible, and I'd welcome Dyna Girl and the others.  There is also an exclusive variation currently available - H.R. in 'running for President' outfit.  As I understand it, it's available at Tower Records, but I don't have one in the neighborhood so I haven't seen it first hand yet.

Figure from the collection of Michael Crawford.

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