It Came from the Attic > Dick Tracy PVC Figures

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Despite being old enough to own my own house, I still have a ton of junk in my parents’ attic. I’m slowly moving all of that stuff to my home. Occasionally I come across something fun, weird or amusing from my past. It Came From the Attic is a series of posts about these odds and ends.

This week’s entry is another set of PVC figures. As I mentioned in the post on the PVC Cable, I generally got PVC figures when there were no action figures available. However, in the case of the 1990 Dick Tracy movie there was a toy line, by Playmates. It wasn’t the best line, but it existed.

So I have no idea why I own these three little PVC figures by Applause. Even odder is the Pruneface; I can see owning Tracy himself, and Flattop was actually my favorite character, but Pruneface? I have to wonder if this was some sort of three-pack.

Of course, there’s an obvious problem with this set: Dick Tracy towers over the other two. Seriously, if this were in scale he’d be something like seven feet tall. While I’m certain that Warren “You’re So Vain” Beatty would be pleased to tower over other mere mortals, I think we can all agree that the world is just fine the way it is.

As for the movie this set is based on…Disney was reportedly hoping to cash in on some of that sweet, sweet Batman cash (although Dick Tracy had been in development for a long time). I have to say I wouldn’t have immediately thought of a 1930s detective who wears a yellow jacket and hadn’t been relevant in nearly half a century as my best chance to draw in the Batman audience, but Disney certainly gave it a shot.

I was drawn in as much as any adolescent boy at the time, primarily because of the absolutely massive marketing effort Disney put into the film. I enjoyed the actual movie well enough. It was colorful and weird, with great set designs and an amazing cast. It was also pretty violent at times, like a lot of those blockbuster movies in the late ’80s and early ’90s. It did well at the box office, but when you took into account the film’s marketing budget, reportedly it was a bit of a disappointment for Disney, who had really been banking on Batman-like success.

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Comments now closed (5)

  • The size difference really is hilarious. It's like MAttel's 200X He-Man/DC Classics philosophy on character heights.

  • The size difference reminds me of Mattel's temporary policy of having nobody be taller than the heroes – you saw this a lot in 200X MOTU and the earlier DC figures.

  • I never saw a 3-pack, but I bought that Dick Tracy individually somewhere. Probably Suncoast or Walgreens. My sole reasoning was that the Playmates version didn’t have a trenchcoat.

  • It's kinda funny that you wrote this now.A few days ago,I was in my storage unit and ran across a Suncoast bag that had all the Dick Tracy Mezco figures in it.I had completely forgotten about them.I took them home and showed them to my 10 yr old son and he was fascinated by them.He has never heard of Dick Tracy and so now I'm thinking about getting the movie so we can watch it together.

  • Don't forger, Nerditis.com is going to have a special themed Halloween Week coming up! I've already prepped my post for the 31st!