I can still taste the stale gum. Whether it was hard and crackly or slightly rubbery, the gum that came in those old packages of Garbage Pail Kids — the same gum crammed in with the baseball heroes of the day — will never leave me.
Back when you could actually buy things for a quarter, I’d always look forward to the family vehicle getting low on gas. That usually meant we’d end up swinging by the local gas station, where I would usually be guaranteed a pack of Garbage Pail Kids for a shiny quarter. While this obsession didn’t last long, I was into those gross little cards pretty hard for a decent length of time. It’s easy to dismiss them as cheap novelties, but a lot of time and care went into the concept. They were often extremely clever, and the art was high quality. At the time Art Spiegelman’s name wouldn’t have meant anything to me, but since then I’ve read his seminal graphic novel Maus and can only nod in wonder that the man who wrote a story that has cemented a place in comic history also dealt with so much snot and pus. Just goes to show . . . something.
When I saw that Funko would be commemorating these gross little oddities with some of their POP Vinyl-styled figures, I knew I was in for a full set. I actually thought they would be a lot smaller than they are, but these are a decent size, between 3 to 5 inches. I have no idea where I’m going to put them, but getting the full set was completely worth it. Funko does a thing where they blind box certain lines, so in order to get the full set you either have to take your chances or just buy a case, which is what I did.
In addition to the minis, Funko also released a large scale 10-inch version of Adam Bomb, who has become the mascot of the Garbage Pail Kids brand, showing up on the front of the package and most media featuring the Kids. Adam also makes an appearance in the minis, so that mushroom cloud head shows up in two scales. I assume the oversized vinyl will be a one-time thing, but at least it’s an extremely interesting one to have done oversized. The paint job on the explosion is very nice and vibrant, and he has great shelf appeal, especially with his “little brother” standing alongside him.
There are 12 minis in all. They all follow a standard pattern of original sculpted head with all the disgusting details necessary for the figure, with painted details doing the rest of the work on a standard blank body. Some of them come with an appropriate accessory.
Adam Bomb comes with a tiny remote control that fits into his hand. Unfortunately, mine had a bit of a lopsided head, so I have to have the head slightly raised on the peg in order for his head to be straight up and down. Oh well.
Dead Ted is missing an eye and has a worm coming out of his cheek. Mine has two right arms, so quality control can clearly be a little spotty with these.
New Wave Dave comes with a can of spray paint. Dig that safety pin in his nose.
Leaky Lindsay is one of the more disgusting of this grouping. That is a lot of snot.
Teevee Stevie comes with a remote control, for changing . . . his face? I don’t know how that works. Dude is all messed up. No hi-def flat screen for this kid.
Hot Scott is a little devil that comes with an itty bitty trident.
Nasty Nick is our resident vampire.
Ghastly Ashley is the hotty of the group, with real raised zits. I think we’ve all known someone who looked like that at some point in their life.
Bony Tony is one of the cooler concepts, shown unzipping his skin. Very neat sculpt.
Mad Mike is the most accessorized of them all, coming with both a broken blade and a small axe.
Ali Gator comes with fish, one to hold and a pre-sculpted one in her mouth. Yum.
Clark Can’t is no Superman, and looks like he may be the only shot Ghastly Ashley has at a prom date.
They each move at the neck and shoulders. While all the heads seem to move freely, I have a ton of stuck shoulders that I’ll need to heat up before I attempt to move them, I just haven’t tried it yet. Again, quality control on these may be a bit spotty, but I guess that’s something to expect in a lot of lines. Beyond that, though, I’m very happy with this grouping, and I am hoping they expand the line to include another set of 12. Fingers crossed for Luke Puke!