Since I finally got around to opening and reviewing the Kidrobot vinyl TMNT figures and the Funko Turtle Van, I thought I would
let the TMNT vinyl parade continue. So next up is Funko's line of smaller Ninja Turtle vinyl figures, and part of their
mystery minis line. These figures are smaller than the usual Funko Pop! figures and have a distinctive style all their own.
So let's see how they stack up to their larger brothers.
Packaging - 6/10In case you couldn't guess by the name, the Mystery Minis are packaged in blind boxes so you don't know which figure you are getting. The boxes themselves are reasonably nice. The back has images of the twelve available figures in the series while there are drawings of seven of the twelve figures wrapping around the other three sides. While I don't particularly like the use of blind boxes, the boxes themselves are fairly nice looking. But then they went and wrapped each box in shrink wrap. I'm assuming that they did that to further prevent people from trying to figure out which figure is in each box. But that is redundant since the figures are already wrapped in a blck plastic bag inside.
Sculpting - Turtles 4/10, April & Krang 5/10, others 8/10The Mystery Minis have a very unique style, even moreso than the Funko Pops! There are a lot of exaggerated angles and shapes. They look more like characatures of the characters than actual representations of them. The style takes a bit to get used to, but it grew on me. The series does have one major shortcoming though, they are very inconsistent. Most of the non-Turtles look great and translate very well into this style. But for some odd reason, they decided to completely remove all of her facial features. I find that very disturbing since she is the only one for which they did that. I also don't like that Krang looks more like an image on a television monitor than a separate being in the android's abdomin. It's also worth noting that for some unknown reason, Shredder is based off of his design in the 2012 cartoon even though all of the others are based off of the original cartoon. That's not to say it isn't a cool looking figure, just a bit out of place. And then you come to the Turtles themselves. They are even more stylized than the other figures, too much so in my opinion. All four of them have such large feet, hands and heads compared to their bodies that they start to look more like Japanese super deformed style figures. That's not the worst idea, I wouldn't mind a set that were all done in that style. But it doesn't really match the other eight figures.
Paint - Krang 5/10, others 9/10The paint and decorations on these figures is really well done. That's particularly surprising considering how sloppy the paint work has been on the Pop! vinyl figures I've gotten. But out of all twelve figures, the Foot Soldier is the only one I have that had any sloppines, a stray bit of black paint on the underside of the hood just above his left arm. But it is in a spot where you aren't likely to see it often anyway. And it is not just that the quality control is better than I expected. There is also quite a bit of detail work put into these figures such as Beeop's chain belt and bracelet. The only complaint that I have is that the graphic for Krang on his android body's stomach is lacking in detail. It makes Krang look like a cartoon being shown on a television rather than a separate entity living in the android body.
Articulation - 0/10The Mystery Minis are unarticulated figurines.
Accessories - 0/10Each of the Mystery Minis except Krang and the Foot Soldier is sculpted holding a weapon or accessory. But none of them are removable.
Value - 7/10The Mystery Mini figures seem to sell for $6 to $8 depending upon the store. You can save a bit of money by buying a case. I bought a case for $70 which brought the price down to under $6 each. While there isn't a guarentee that a case of twelve figures will not have any duplicate figures, all of the figures are suppose to be evenly packed, so you should get a complete set or very close to it. Otherwise, if you are only interested in specific figures, you will probably be better off spending a few bucks more on the secondary market to avoid havign to buy mutiple figures that you do not want.
Happy Hunting:I ordered my case of figures from Big Bad Toy Store. I have also seen other Mystery Mini assortments at a few of the local comic book shops, Barnes and Noble and Target. Though I don't recall seeing the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle versions. But the easiest option, particularly if you want to get a full set, is probably to order them online.