I have to thank Blip Toys and Target for lately making it easier to feel like I'm a 7-year-old collecting toys in 1991 again. Of course, I've never stopped trying to feel like that, but most modern-day toys just don't provide the same kind of fun as breaking open a pack of Monster in My Pocket or similar toys did back then.
That's why I appreciate that Blip and Target are bringing the late-'80s/early-'90s-style goodness back with some new Little Weirdos-approved offerings. These items come to us via a recent addition to the toy sections in Target stores—a small area along the back wall that houses "$5 and under" toys that didn't make it to the main toy aisles. This section is filled with the same kind of stuff you might see in the Dollar Tree toy section, although maybe slightly higher quality. The first great discovery from this section was the Monsters vs. Military and Ninjas vs. Robots plastic mini figure tubes (I previously wrote about the former here). But perhaps even more fun is a line, also from Blip, called Slimy Sludge.
Just look at that packaging: it screams, "I am going to be something awesome." And it is. Basically Slimy Sludge toys are blind bagged monster mini figures packed with slime (or "goop," as I used to call it back in the days when it seemed to be in every single toy vending machine you'd pass by). So simple, yet so fun.
If you collect little rubber guys, these might bring to mind some toys from the past, such as Galoob's Trash Bag Bunch (which came blind bagged in little trash sacks you'd dissolve in water) or mini Slime Boglins (which came in little toilets with slime). When I saw the Slimy Sludge bags I instantly thought of Trash Bag Bunch, and I'm sure that nostalgic connection is part of the reason I find these so irresistible.
The Slimy Sludge line is split into two varieties: Sludge Monsters and Rot Zombies. The background art of the Sludge Monster packs is black, with the figures inside being green and the slime being yellow. Rot Zombies have purple packs, purple figures and green slime.
Both the Sludge Monster and Rot Zombie sets go for $3 a pop and include eight different figures to collect, so if you go after a complete set, you'll be trying for 16 different figures. The back of each package variety includes a list of all the figures you could find inside, with each character given a strange and amusing name (for example, "Crazy Slimersons" or "Boogy the Boydog").
The slime feels pretty much like the same kind that's been around for decades. If you've ever got slime from a toy vending machine capsule, you have an idea of the stuff. While it feels extremely gooey and messy to the touch, fortunately it doesn't seem to really stick to other things. You can remove the figures from the slime without much, if any, slime residue left stuck to them (and any that is comes off easily with a quick rinse).
The figures are around 1-to-1.5" tall and made out of a soft plastic that's firmer than Monster in My Pocket material, but slightly more flexible than a MUSCLE figure. Each figure includes only a small amount of painted detail—mainly eyes and tongues. I'm usually all about the totally monochromatic figures, but I actually really like the way the painted details were treated on these. The conservative paint apps give a bit more pop, while at the same allowing for a similar kind of appeal that a mono figure has.
The sculpts of the figures are really detailed and fun, while not veering too far into cutesy or goofy territory like a lot of modern-day monster toys do. Some of them are actually pretty bizarre and ugly-looking, which is great.
Let's take a closer look at them all:
BILLY TERRIFY: This guy's a leech-like monster. The figure's actually made up of multiple pieces glued together, I guess as a result of the shape and requirements in the molding/production process. That fact doesn't take much away from its coolness, though. You just can't go wrong with a leech monster.
SLOBBER: One of my favorites. He's either a blob or some kind of plant monster, with a giant mouth on his base and a single eye sprouting up hanging over him. Really fun sculpt.
SLIMEBOT: Another favorite. Even though he has "bot" in his name, his arms are pretty much the only robot-like thing about him. The rest is basically a big, one-eyed blob. This figure is probably the easiest one to detect sealed in its packaging, because it's so thick.
LARGE EYE LARRY: A one-eyed walking pile of ooze. This figure's design is really simple, but I think that's what makes it so appealing. I like how the sculpt all comes together, with Larry's big, bulbous head and wide-reaching arms contrasting his tiny legs and feet.
SLIMEYETI: This is another figure that was clearly produced in two pieces, as his right arm looks to be glued on to the rest of him. Again, that doesn't detract much from the figure, and the idea of a yeti made of slime is pretty genius.
|Muckoid & Crazy Slimersons: long lost relatives?|
SLIMY BLOB: This guy kind of looks like the village idiot among the Sludge Monsters. He's a little blob with vaguely frog-like features and a derp face goin' on. And for all of this, I kind of love him.
SLIMEPEDE: Rounding out the Sludge Monsters is this creature that's sort of like a carrion crawler of slime monsters. Only he's much happier-looking than a carrion crawler. Maybe a pet to the other Sludge Monsters?
TOXIC TOM: Mr. Toxic is a pretty creepy-looking guy, mainly because his left arm is massive while his right arm is tiny. There's also the fact that his eye is dangling out of its socket. Even though they call these Zombies, they went a lot more creative with the designs than your typical, run-of-the-mill zombie, and this figure is a perfect example of that.
2 KNUCKLEHEADS: I have a hunch that whoever sculpted these was familiar with Toxic Crusaders. Between this guy, who is sort of reminiscent of the two-headed Headbanger from TC, and the next figure, I really think there's a connection.
VERA FAST: If 2 Knuckleheads reminds me of Headbanger, this one reminds me of Toxic Crusaders' four-armed Dr. Killemoff. Except I think Vera is supposed to be female, considering the name and the fact that there's, uhh, visible breasts in the character artwork.
JOHNNY LOBSTER: A lobster-clawed cyclops zombie. The sculpt on this one is flatter and smoother than the rest, providing some nice variety to the set.
MITCH MACHETE: I hate this guy. Simply because I can't find him (notice he's the only one not shown in my photo of the Rot Zombies above). Does he even exist? I mean, he's shown in figure form on the front of the package, so I don't understand why I, or anyone else I've seen open packs of these, haven't pulled him. Anyway, he looks like a cool character, and my set will never be complete without him, so SOMEONE FIND ME A MITCH MACHETE! Or at least confirm that he exists. Please?
BOOGY THE BOYDOG: Oh man, this is definitely my favorite Rot Zombie. The sculpt on this beast-boy is fantastic—I love how demented he looks with his fanged mouth and long, curling, red tongue.
TOXIC SNOUT: This looks like a slug-pig hybird hauling around some kind of machine on his back that's about to shoot toxic fumes at his victims. Either that or a vacuum cleaner. Either way, I can get behind this dude.
ZOOKA: Along with Toxic Tom, this guy looks like the muscle behind the operation. I especially love the fact that one of his shoulders is a shark head.
And there you go—probably more than you ever wanted to know about these weirdo toys from Target. I got immediately hooked on them and would love to see a second series produced (after I track down that blasted Mitch Machete, of course).
What about you? What do you think of Slimy Sludge? Have you bought any yet, or do you plan to?