Review > Spud Lightyear and Woody’s Tater Round Up

How does a grown-up come to collect Mr. Potato Head? I blame TV. It all started with an episode of The Pretender titled “Bomb Squad,” a.k.a. “Potato Head Blues.” Jarod, the protagonist becomes a member of a bomb squad to catch a serial bomber. One of his co-workers has a Mr. Potato Head on his desk and Jarod promises him a ton of extra parts if he helps him out. Needless to say, this little cameo helped reignite a passion that borderlines an obsession with an old childhood favorite.

In recent years, Hasbro has taken to producing Potato Head sets based on various properties. It started with Darth Tater. After that, it all sort of spiraled out of control, then came Transformers themed Optimash Prime and Bumble Spud, more Star Wars-themed releases including “R@-POTATOO” and “Spudtrooper” and various Disney exclusive releases, and even “Taters of the Lost Ark” and Iron Man 2 “Tony Starch.”

While each subsequent release became even more of a stretch, Toy Story crossovers seem to fit nicely with Mr. Potato Head, since he is one of the ensemble characters featured in the film.

Packaging: Both are packaged in the customary box with a window with a Toy Story 3 theme.

Design & Sculpt: Buzz comes wearing his iconic high-tech Space Ranger suit, featuring the front control panel and the large red button which activates his jet pack. Covering the top and back of his head is a purple “snoopy cap” and has a retractable helmet which covers most of his face. In addition his jet pack which attaches to the back of his suit is nicely sculpted. He features standard Mr. Potato Head eyes, ears, nose, mouth, and arms. His “space boots” are the standard MPH shoes, but painted in Buzz colors.

Sheriff Woody comes wearing his familiar cowboy getup. Cowboy hat, a vest with a Sheriff’s badge, holster belt, and cowboy boots with spurs.

Neither spud bears a close resemblance to either Buzz or Woody, at least not in that by looking at Darth Tater or Optimash Prime the character is instantly recognizable. I’d say it’s more like Mr. Potato Head dresses up as Buzz or Woody, rather than actually “being” the character.

Plastic & Paint: For the most part the paint on both toys decent, there’s an amount of slop there and there, but that is to be expected.

There are some nice details that they’ve included which they could have easily skipped over, such as the spurs on the back of Woody’s boots, the sheriff’s badge, and even the thread details on the hat and vest. Buzz’s control panel and jet pack feature sculpted details which presumably they could have just painted on.

One minor gripe is that they’ve given both Potato Heads the standard arms. While its not a huge problem, other past Potato Crossovers such as Darth Mash, Spud Trooper, and Spider Spud have all featured unique arms. That said, there is a fair amount of detail already which sort of makes up for the lack of new arms.

Articulation: Mr. Potato Head doesn’t feature any articulation so to speak. His parts of course are all interchangeable leaving limitless possibilities for various combinations for the user to dream up.

Accessories: Neither come with any accessories. This would have been a nice set to include a lasso for Woody or the Disney exclusive Buzz ray gun, however due to legal reasons they may not have the rights to reproduce that particular piece.

Overall: When I first heard of these releases, I wanted them sight unseen. Now that I actually have them, I’m still glad I own them, but they still don’t seem to have the same pop or presence as prior Potato Head crossovers. With all the various Toy Story 3 merchandise being pumped out, these certainly are two unique incarnations of the characters.

Buzz and Woody are also a great value, at about $10 each, they’re cheaper than regular licensed character crossovers, and about the same price as the standard MPH, only you’re getting more plastic for your money. Thus far the crossovers have worked both as collector’s items and fun toys for kids, but these border on being a little too infantile to be up on the shelf with Spuda Fett and Idaho Jones. Buzz and Woody are a lot of fun and continue the trend of creative crossovers with Hasbro’s Playskool and various properties.

111/200

Previous

Pic of the Day

Next

Pic of the Day

13 Comments

  1. Nice Review. What on earth are they going to think up next for Mr. Potatohead?

  2. I have to admit, this one strikes me as a little weird, more so than the usual. It would be like having an Avengers set of figures where Captain America came dressed as Thor…

  3. Mecha-Shiva

    Mr.Potatohead is the comeback king of toys thanks to Toy story.Wish they would make a ghostbuster Egon Spud-ler.

  4. The only Toy Story 3 toys that I've got are the Lego ones. I like the Lego Hammy and Rex. OK, now I guess I'll go use up my slot for today and open up a Lego Toy Story set…

  5. PrfktTear

    @NoisyDvL5: Yeah, they're joy incarnate! The names are great too, "Tony Starch" or "Darth Tater" some of 'em are a little hokey, like "OptiMASH Prime" but still fun.

    Unfortunately Snake Fries got the axe, they never really said why though. There was a small blurb about it last year though. I think it would have been another great addition.

    I would say that maybe TPTB felt he was a little too "war" related for a young children's toy, but what with all the other Joe related crap they released targeted towards the same age bracket, I don't see the difference. Not to mention the fact that we just got Tony Starch, but then again, I guess a difference could be drawn between "guy in a high tech suit" and "Ninja Commando guy who kills people".

  6. Nice review, PrfktTear! I haven't bought any of the license ones, but I'm fond of them. Particularly when the name is cute or clever.

    Speaking of, did Snake Fries ever make his way to stores?

  7. PrfktTear

    I've seen that electronic talking Mr. Potato Head… he looks really neat, but with an msrp of $49.99, he isn't that neat. I think I'll wait for either a really deep sale (like 40% -or- clearance).

  8. AJ

    Thinkway have made a "collection" version of Mr Potato Head which is fairly screen-accurate, but still isn't screen-accurate due to the "joined eyes" (perhaps for safety reasons?), "long legs" and a few far more minor details.

    It is also an "electronic" toy which means that instead of storing spare parts in Mr Potato Head's rump, that's where the batteries go. Due to the electronics, the figure is also a lot more expensive than Hasbro's figures.

    In addition to the figures they've released to date, Hasbro have also announced Toy Story 3 screen-accurate Mr and Mrs Potato Head figures to be released in Fall 2010 (whenever that is since I have little knowledge of the seasons in the US). Hasbro claims that the figures will be screen-accurate from their hats to their shoes, but no further details (including pictures) have been released yet.

  9. I don't think it's that hard to figure out who made what.

    The top quality stuff is from Thinkway.

    The stuff that's poorly painted with BS articulation is Mattel.

    Potato Head is Hasbro.

    Sorry, just a little bitter about how badly Mattel is doing the 5 inch line. Their tiny PVC stuff, looks alright.

  10. PrfktTear

    I think everyone's got their hands in the pot for this one. Hasbro obviously wouldn't give permission to Mattel to produce anything they own, and vice versa. If you note any of the little mini-PVC figures,'ol Spud Face is missing, but thats because Mattel (I think) is producing those. Hasbro produced their own "Toybox Heroes" a couple years ago in which they made most of the main charactersw in the scale of the rest of their "Heroes" lines which did feature Toy Story Mr. Potato Head. Thinkway seems to be doing a lot of the electronic oriented ToyStory figures. Its a little conusing, even just looking at the Toy Story shelves, there are some slight differences in the Toy Story packaging. Some products are just being marketed as "Toy Story" while others recieve the full "Toy Story 3" lable.

    Hasbro has also produced a Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head based on the film (each sold separately) which hasn't been seen on shelves for a while. They're the same pricepoint (around $10) as the Buzz and Woody Potato Heads.

  11. Fengschwing

    One for the kids methinks, they liked the Spider-Mash one, they'll love these, cheers Mr Tear.

  12. Poe

    @Dead Man Walking: Hasbro. The rights to Toy Story 3 are spread between Hasbro, Mattel, and Thinkway Toys…and some other companies, for all I know.

  13. Dead Man Walking

    So who is making the Mr. Potato head toys from Toy Story 3? Mattel, Hasbro, or some other company?

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén