The Home for Odd, Ugly and Neglected Toys

Classic Movie Monsters by Imperial Toy

Classic Movie Monsters by Imperial Toy

I'm sure you're all familiar with these classic Universal Monsters. They're the classic movie monsters that the world knows and loves.

Well, today I'd like to share with you Dracula, Wolfman, Frankenstein and the Mummy.

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Dracula figure by Imperial Toys Frankenstein figure by Imperial Toys

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Wolfman figure by Imperial Toys Mummy figure by Imperial Toys

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Classic Movie Monsters by Imperial Toys

These 8" figures were produced by Imperial Toy Corporation and Universal Pictures in 1986. You may not recognize them at first glance because they're so darned quirky and awkward-looking compared to most modern renditions of the classic monsters. That's actually what I love about 'em though. They're so "off-model" and uniquely charming.

And according to their packages, they come "with posable arms and head." Not a huge selling point, but what else were they gonna call out on the package? "With goofy, inaccurate likenesses and proportions?"

Let's just see how they measure up to their on-screen counterparts.

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Dracula figure by Imperial Toys

Here we have Dracula's Grandpa…

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Frankenstein figure by Imperial Toys

… Frankenstein's swollen, awkward, teen-aged son…

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Mummy figure by Imperial Toys

… Um... the Mummy's stunt double…

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Wolfman figure by Imperial Toys

… and what actually looks kinda like the Wolfman.

I guess they do bare a resemblance to the movie characters but not necessarily to the actors portraying them. (I know these things were released in the 80s, so I probably shouldn't be so judgmental. Everything nowadays is made from a feakin' computer scan of a face.)

You thought their faces were funny? Wait til you see the rest of 'em.

Let's start things out with the time-honored blood sucker, Dracula

Dracula
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Dracula figure by Imperial Toys

He's a friendly Dracula (either that, or he's waving down a cab).

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Dracula figure by Imperial Toys

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Dracula figure by Imperial Toys

I'm really surprised they didn't give this guy fangs. C'mon! That's his gimmick. Now he just looks like a very pale, formal, butler-superhero type.

The figure is almost completely black and white except for the few dabs of red. None of the red is blood though (unless you imagine those a blood-covered lips).  Oh, and his medal of honor and buttons are yellow.

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Dracula figure by Imperial Toys

Don't you just love those plump, cartoony hands they put on this guy? They look a lot like the classic cartoon gloved hand (you know, like Mickey Mouse or whoever would wear). I am glad they went the extra mile and added the rings though. I guess Dracula had a thing for bling.

Hey. He's got a dab of green on his ring too. So that means they actually used 5 colors on this figure. Wow.

Now, let's look at Frankenstein (or "Frankenstein's Monster" as I like to refer to him when I'm feeling anal about it).

Frankenstein
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Frankenstein figure by Imperial Toys

Jesus H! Look at those hands! What the hell's going on here? I know Frankenstein's cobbled together from various body parts, but I've never known him to have freakishly large hands at the end of super long arms. He can reach his knees without bending over. FREAKY!

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Frankenstein figure by Imperial Toys

And look at his tiny head. Adorable (or should I say "abhorable").

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Frankenstein figure by Imperial Toys

This Frankenstein's actually really great. I wish the other figures in this set were as distorted and goofy as this guy. I think he's my favorite of the bunch.

Next up is everybody's furry favorite, the Wolfman.

Wolfman
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Wolfman figure by Imperial Toys

I'm not quite sure what to say about this guy. He's actually a decent-looking Wolfman figure. His yellow and red color scheme threw me off at first, but that's about it. And I guess I find it hard to believe that he'd turn into a wolf, run through the woods terrorizing people and still manage to keep his shirt fully buttoned and tucked-in. That's one prim and proper Wolfman.

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Wolfman figure by Imperial Toys

His feet actually look like furry boots or slippers or something. Wonder why only his shoes tear off but the rest of his clothes stay completely intact.

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Wolfman figure by Imperial Toys

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Wolfman figure by Imperial Toys

One thing I'd like to point out is the subtle "gore" included with this figure. While Dracula, the guy known for drinking blood every day, doesn't have a drop on him, this guy, the Wolfman, has blood spatter and fine mist sprayed all over his hands. Looks like he's had a busy night. Maybe his shirt was actually white before sundown.

Oh yeah, and check out the chunks of flack on his fingers (or is that the freshly-torn flesh of another victim? Mwa-ha-ha!).

And lastly, we have the Mummy.

Mummy
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Mummy figure by Imperial Toys

This Mummy honestly resembles an injured stuntman more than a centuries-old, decayed zombie wrapped in bandages.

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Mummy figure by Imperial Toys

He's just standing there in a body cast.

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Mummy figure by Imperial Toys

He seriously looks like an over-the-hill daredevil who's suffering from scrapes, burns, broken bones and probably a bruised ego.

You should probably retire buddy.

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Mummy figure by Imperial Toys
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Even the spots of dirt (or whatever they're supposed to be) look like dried blood seeping through the wraps. Very, very goofy. This guy's my second favorite :D

Okay, that wraps up our look at screwed up Universal Monsters toys.

So what if the toys are ugly. Why else would you want to buy them? Are you telling me perfect likenesses of each of these movie characters would be more interesting than what I've just shown you? I think not.

I hope you enjoy these guys as much as I do. If you like them, you can buy them on eBay right now!


22 Responses

  1. Mittens says:

    we’ve got dracula who’s ready for a night on the town, a frankenstein’s monster who’s made of chimp parts, an accident prone fella and a wolf man that looks more like the victim from that mcfarlan werewolf playset. LOVE THEM.

  2. harris says:

    that dracula looks a lot like Lon Chaney Jr.

  3. The King of Bootlegs says:

    I have the McDonald’s versions of these. Awesome find Jason!

  4. Oldman says:

    Great sarcasm in your individual descriptions. If all else fails maybe you can land a job on The Glenn Beck show or John Stewart’s show. It’s good
    to know there are jobs out there for just about any toy maker. These guys
    really deserve to be honored on this Blog of yours.

  5. @ Mittens – Glad you like :D

    @ harris – I think you’re right.

    @ King of Bootlegs – I’d like to see the McD versions. Also, I’m Justin. my brother’s name is Jason. Common mistake though ;)

    @ Oldman – Thanks for the support. I don’t wanna be known as Mr. Sarcasm though. Maybe I should cut back on it.

  6. Jason says:

    These guys are just too goofy. I think i like injured stuntman the best because of his awkward/goofiness. The franky monster is SO funny though. His puffy WTF look is classic. Good find.

    Your fun view/writing of these guys really brings out the weirdo essence. Keep up the good work.

  7. Bubbashelby says:

    I picked up Frank and Drac last year. They’re fun to have around at Halloween.

    The mummy would look awesome along with some larger GI Joe figures, lying in a cot or something. He totally looks like an overwrapped hospital patient!

  8. The King of Bootlegs says:

    When i dig em out I’ll post em for all to see

  9. Blue Herring says:

    Great toys and great commentary, as always! I feel like a kindred spirit, I prefer to collect odd, obscure, and knockoff 80′s era robots, so I totally get where you’re coming from.

  10. John Rozum says:

    I think the Mummy is actually meant to look like the one that appears in “Abbot and Costello Meet the Mummy.” If you see a picture, you’ll see the resemblance and why this A&C movie rates so low. If you think this thing looks goofy as a toy, then imagine what it would be like to watch people in a live action movie supposedly being menaced by it.

    I never got around to buying these when they were released. Back then I thought they were really cool. After Sideshow tackled the Universal monsters about a decade ago, everything else ended up looking pathetic in comparison, but they do have their charm.

  11. Poe Ghostal says:

    I’ve got Drac and Frank, and I love them. I had them when I was a kid (though I had to re-buy them off eBay later). I passed on the Wolfman and the Mummy, though…they’re pretty awful.

    These days, my favorite UM figures are the Toy Island ones. I know, the Sideshow 8″ figures are better sculpted and painted, but the TI ones are more fun toys.

  12. Justin says:

    I’m like 80% positive I had one of these when I was a kid.

    But my favorite Universal monster toys… I don’t remember who made them, but they were about the size of a GI Joe (4″ or so). They were made of a vinyl-y soft plastic, and they all had glow-in-the-dark parts. Frankenstein, Dracula and the Wolfman only glowed where their flesh was visible i.e. hands and faces, but the Mummy and the Creature from the Black Lagoon (my favorite) glowed full body. So cool! I loved them because I could use GI Joes and play out the movies.

  13. John says:

    I have the Frankenstein. I also have the Imperial King Kong, plus the Imperial two headed Dragon. I used them against my 1983 Bandai Godzilla and Mecha-Godzilla.

    @ Justin, the Universal Monsters your talking about were 3 and 3/4 Remco figures. They were scaled down versions of the 9 inch releases from the very late 1970′s. I believe the little ones came out in 1981 or so. I have the Haunted Mansion and the whole collection.

  14. John says:

    In addition, I remember these being sold in the bubble packaging as seen here or just loose with a tag stating official Universal Studios Monsters.

  15. Jeff says:

    The mummy is definitely ‘Klaris, Prince of Evil’ from “Abbott & Costello meet the Mummy”, & Imperial probably chose it over the classic Kharis/Imhotep version because, let’s face it, that one looks like just some wrinkled old guy painted grey, & what little kid would want that?
    Okay, well, yeah, anyone who would write in to here obviously…but still, it is the only action figure out there based specifically on one of the monsters from the Abbott & Costello horror comedies, & I for one applaud the fact that it even exists at all.

  16. @ John Rozum & @ Jeff – Thanks for the Abbot & Costello info. It is great that this Mummy is from one of their movies. It makes him that much more “weirdo.”

    I found this image online of the Mummy in action.
    http://www.briansdriveintheater.com/comedy/abbottandcostello/aandc10.jpg

  17. Jeff says:

    What makes the Mummy figure even more “weirdo” is the fact that you called him “the mummy’s stunt double”.
    Well, guess what…the part of ‘Klaris’ in “Abbott & Costello meet the Mummy” was played by veteran stuntman Edwin “Eddie” Parker who actually was Lon Chaney Jr.’s stunt double in the Mummy movies!
    He also stood in for Bela Lugosi when things got rough in “Frankenstein meets the Wolfman” & “Bride of the Monster”.
    Heck, he even donned the pointy-eared cowl of Batman to battle the bad guys in the Caped Crusader’s very first serial appearance.
    Wasn’t even his first appearance as a monster menacing comedians Bud & Lou…he was the bestial bearded & bushy-browed Mr. Hyde (who would have made a GREAT action figure as part of the set!) to Boris Karloff’s sinister Dr. Jekyll in “Abbott & Costello meet Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde”.

  18. Wow! You really know your stuntmen ;)

    Thanks for all the info. I’m glad you stumbled across this site.

  19. atombat says:

    I have the Frankenstein’s “Monster” he has a great paint job on his face, the paints come of his giant hands though. I wouldn’t mind the Dracula.

  20. ShenaniTims says:

    Frankenstein’s Monster oversized body made me think of David Byrne and his oversized suits. Now I’m gonna imagine the Monster dancing around, bumping into and breaking stuff, when I listen to the Talking Heads…

  21. [...] When deciding what toy to feature for Halloween, we toy bloggers really become conflicted. There’s only so many times you can post pics of the Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy or any other variation of the Universal Monsters. [...]

  22. [...] When deciding what toy to feature for Halloween, we toy bloggers really become conflicted. There’s only so many times you can post pics of the Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy or any other variation of the Universal Monsters. [...]

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