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NECA: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Bebop and Rocksteady’s Gang

We’ve got a TMNT two-for-turtle-Thursday for you today with two two-packs packed with cartoon criminal craziness. Bebop and Rocksteady’s gang are fairly prominent in the first episode of the ’87 cartoon as humans, but they also get mutated off screen and appear in short cameos after that, so getting figures now reminds me of the feeling of getting figures of obscure Cantina aliens for the first time back in the old POTF2 Star Wars line days. Jersey Red is from a slightly different faction of the gang that didn’t appear in the first episode or get mutated, but appeared prominently in a couple of later season episodes. Let’s take a look!

The gangsters also known as Dopey and Dumbo get renamed here Tall Thug (Dopey) and Short Gangster (Dumbo), but I’ve gotten used to the names Dopey and Dumbo, so I’ll use them here. The packaging is in the same style as previous two-packs and what strikes me about this one in particular is that the character illustrations are so much clearer and cleanly drawn than I’ve ever really seen the characters on the show. They look less like they were drawn from show reference and more from a memory of how great you remember the cartoon being from your childhood memories.

Dopey and Dumbo come with their weapons from the show (a chain, hook, bat, and wooden mallet), pieces to make their transformation into their mutant forms (an alternate head and forearm for Dopey and alternate arms and head for Dumbo), and alternate human hands (fists and regular grip hands for both and a special hand for the hook for Dopey).

Grunt and Jersey Red come with alternate hands (fists for both, two regular sets of grip hands for Grunt, open and grip hands for Jersey Red), weapons (sword and blaster), a spray paint can, and an alternate mutated torso for Grunt.

I like that they included the weapons that the characters actually use in the episode and they all have good detail with appropriate detail line deco and fit well into each character’s included hands. I especially like Red’s pistol from the episode where the gang travels into the future as it has a unique design with an interesting open barrel.

Grunt’s two sets of grip hands confused me at first, but upon a closer look you can see one set has longer fingernails, so I think it was supposed to be green and swappable with the mutated torso. Mistakes happen and lizard-grunt won’t be sword wielding, but fortunately he also has razor sharp claw hands in that form so he’s not completely unarmed.

Jersey Red has some nice grappling hands that will work well for a fighter.

Her alternate hand is also designed to hold the spray can.

The highlight of the set for me is that you can transform the original gang members into their mutated forms. These forms really only get shown off a couple times in the cartoon, and they actually look imprisoned by Krang, but I can imagine these guys getting away from the Technodrome and causing havoc on the streets in these forms.

Outside of Muckman and Mutagen man it’s hard for me to think of a more unfortunate mutation than Dopey’s mutant Shrew. His weird trunk and swollen right hand are truly disturbing. The head and entire forearm are swappable parts.

Dopey turns into a dog and he gets new arms and head. You can kind of see the human neck under the giant dog head from certain angles, but it’s still an effective transformation. His tiny dog form hands are sharp and pointy, which initially made me think he was some kind of clawed creature, but I think he’s just meant to be a furry little guy.

Grunt is probably the most elaborate with a whole new articulated torso and arms and probably my favorite of the bunch. I love the way his mowhawk has become the frill on his lizard back and his Mad Max meets MOTU clothes are well suited to the lizard form.

Sculpting is really fantastic and I love all the different sizes and shapes represented across these figures. You don’t often see figures of overweight characters, especially women, so Red is pretty unique in that regard. It’s a nice variety and the sculptor does a good job of packing a lot of personality into each face.

The articulation is fairly standard for the line, however some changes are made due to the shapes of the characters. For example Dumbo and Red have swivel/hinge knees rather than double knees just due to the size and shapes of their shorter, squater limbs. Grunt has swivel/hinge elbows instead of double elbows. I think generally Dumbo and Red have less range of motion due to the thickness of limbs. Red can also sometimes be challenging to balance.

The figures have:

  • Ball and Socket head and mid-torso
  • Swivel hinge shoulders, elbows (except Dopey), wrists, hips, and ankles
  • Thigh swivel at the hip
  • Waist swivel (Grunt only) and boot swivel (except Dumbo)
  • Double hinged elbows (Dopey only) and knees (Dopey and Grunt only)

Paint is really solid and clean and there are no noticeable issues aside from the aforementioned grip hands.

The size variety here is really nice and they scale well with the turtles.

Overall these are a nice couple of sets and feature characters that I never really believed we would ever get in figure form. These are the kind of more obscure guys that I would chat with my fellow toy geek buddies about how cool it would be if they made this guy or that, so it’s super cool to actually get them and it’s a set of four that completes the team (if you were able to get Scrag from Lootcrate). Plus you get Jersey Red, which starts off another whole faction of punks. I personally wouldn’t mind getting Lugnut and High Five from that group. If the characters do nothing for you, they are also really interesting and colorful ’80s punk designs for your Turtles to fight.