Mikey's Muppet Memorabilia Museum

Mikey's Muppet Memorabilia Museum

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

McDonald's Muppet Babies PVC Figures

 

The first series of McDonalds PVC Figures from 1986.

In 1986 McDonald's restaurants sold Muppet Babies PVC figures that came with removable vehicles. The set included Baby Kermit, Baby Piggy, Baby Fozzie, and Baby Gonzo. These toys proved to be extremely popular in their day, so much so that within a year (in '86 or '87) McDonald's reissued them and added Baby Animal to the set. According to Muppet Wiki Baby Animal was only available in Canada. However the Muppet Wiki information is inaccurate as it states that there were only two sets of figures released in North America when there are in fact three. Muppet Wiki also states that Baby Animal was included with the first release of the figures however that is not the case. He was not released until the second go around when the toys were reissued.

The Muppet Wiki page also claims that the Canadian Baby Gonzo figure was barefoot and the American Baby Gonzo had shoes. This is also inaccurate as the figure with no shoes is from the first series and the figure with shoes is from the second series. Both figurers were sold in Canada therefore the figure with shoes is not exclusive to the United States. As I live in Ontario, Canada I don't know if the figure without shoes was sold in the US or not. Although this second "reissued" set appeared to be the same toys as the first series, they were in fact slightly different re-sculpts of the figures. I've shown comparisons of all the figures further below. In 1990 McDonald's offered a third set of Muppet Babies figures, however this time a completely new set of figures and vehicles was produced.

fourth set of Muppet Babies toys was issued in 1993 but it was only available at McDonalds restaurants in Europe. This set featured the same four characters. Fozzie Bear is attached to his vehicle which I suspect is a friction toy. I'm not certain if the other figures could be removed from their vehicles or not. The vehicles were reused from the Garfield and Hanna-Barbera series of toys that had previously been released in North America, but made in different colours.

The second series of McDonalds PVC Figures from 1986 or '87 with the addition of Baby Animal.

This is a large pin button that staff at McDonalds restaurants wore to promote the return of the Muppet Babies figures, which is why the button says "They're Back" at the top. Baby Animal is featured in the front of the other figures because he was a new addition to the set. The button is dated 1986 which suggests that the second series was available in '86 rather than '87.

Here are 3 of the 4 paper inserts that came in the baggies with the figures. They're dated 1986. The same inserts were used for the first and second series. On the far left is Baby Piggy from the second release in an unopened baggie. Below is the opposite side to show the toy still in the bag. 

Series 2 Baby Piggy in an unopened baggie. The insert card is dated 1986.

The third series of McDonalds PVC Figures from 1990.

Here are the inserts for the third series of Muppet Babies figures which are dated 1990.

Each of the vehicles from the third series was made with a pivot joint at the center that allows the vehicle to turn left or right. However, this feature doesn't work very well when the figure is sitting on the vehicle because it either knocks the figure off or cannot be turned with the figure in place, depending on which vehicle it is. All of the vehicles can be hooked together to form a train.

All three of the Baby Kermit figures, L to R: series 1, series 2 and series 3

The series 1 figure is slightly smaller than the series 2 figure. Series 1 has smaller irises than series 1, and series 2 has the irises painted more toward the top of the eye. The red inside the mouth is lighter for series 1 and the blue necktie detail is painted to be thinner. Series 3 Kermit is sitting rather than standing. Below is the side view.

You can see that Kermit's foot for series 1 is quite smaller than series 2, as is the whole figure.

All three of the Baby Piggy figures, L to R: series 1, series 2 and series 3
All three figures are in a sitting position which can make them confusing to identify.

The shape of Baby Piggy's face and the bow on her head is quite different between the series 1 and series 2 figures. The series 3 figure is much larger than the others and the feet are wider apart which prevents the figure from fitting into the pink car. Only series 1 and 2 figures can fit in the car. 

Side view

The bows on Baby Piggy's head are quite different on all three figures. 
Series 1 Piggy doesn't have a bow on her back.

All three of the Baby Fozzie figures, L to R: series 1, series 2 and series 3

Series 1 and series 2 figures appear to be identical in size and shape, however a closer look shows that the feet are shaped differently. The series 1 figure also has deeper lines on the cheeks to accent his smile. The series 1 figure has larger dots on the bowtie while the irises on the series 2 figure are larger and closer together. The series 3 figure is sitting rather than standing. 

Side view

All three of the Baby Gonzo figures, L to R: series 1, series 2 and series 3
All are in a sitting position which makes them more complicated to identify.

The series 1 figure is the easiest to identify because it's the only one without shoes and the strands of hair are bigger. Series 2 and series 3 figures are shaped quite differently and the third figure is much larger than the others.

Side view

Baby Animal and his wagon from series 2. Both are marked 1986.

Side view

In 1986 when series 1 was available, McDonalds produced two PVC figures for younger children who could not play with the regular toys due to the small pieces. The above figure of Baby Kermit on roller-skates is one of these figures, the other figure is Baby Piggy on roller-skates which I don't have. I assume these figures would have also been reissued with series 2.

In 1994 McDonalds released a series of toys under the title "All Time Favourites" which included a variety of licensed characters that had previously been featured in their own McDonalds toy series. Each character was presented as a toy that could be hooked together to form a 15 car train set. Baby Kermit and Baby Piggy were featured on toy number 11 from the set. Above is the toy in a sealed baggie next to one that is loose. When the toy is rolled forward Kermit and Piggy spin around. The base that they are on is designed to look like a record player.

The toy has five wheels on the bottom. The wheel in the center is the one that makes the figures spin around.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

I WANT MORE LEGO MUPPET MINIFIGURES!!!!!!!!!

 

Here is the entire set of 12 Muppets minifigures!!! Front row, L to R: Sweetish Chef, Rowlf the Dog, Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo with Camilla the Chicken. Back row, L to R: Bunsen, Beeker, Animal, Janice, Waldorf, and Statler.

In May 2022, Lego released a series of 12 Muppets "minifigures" that were hugely popular. They caused quite a stir among both Muppet and Lego fans who frantically collected the complete series, myself included. As such the figures did not last in stores for very long and sold out very quickly. By the end of the summer in 2022 they were no longer available. 

With such a successful and popular product you would think that Lego would have been quick to market a second series of Muppet figures but unfortunately this has yet to happen! I hope this changes because not only do I absolutely love these little guys, but the collection is still incomplete!!!!!! We need the rest of the Electric mayhem band, Scooter, Sam the Eagle, and so many others!

I'm very surprised that Lego didn't release a second series of these figures, and I'm also surprised they didn't release a Muppet Show Theater playset as it seemed like everyone who collected these figures wanted one. Clearly the Lego folks are missing out on a golden opportunity. I hope they at least make a playset set based on the Muppet Show arches so that we can display the figures in it, that would be so cool! There are several other Muppet Show themed playsets that I would want as well. Personally, I'd love to collect Lego mini figures of all the odd background Muppet monsters and supporting characters!

Therefore, below is my crazy, extremely long and detailed list of ideas for Muppet Lego figures and playsets which I spent way too much time on! ...but I would love to have every one of these! Hopefully someone at Lego reads this and gets inspired! :)

Mikey's wish list for Lego Muppets series 2!!!

1. Scooter with clipboard
2. Dr. Teeth with keyboard
3. Floyd with bass guitar
4. Zoot with saxophone
5. Lips with trumpet
6. Sam the Eagle
7. Sweetums with Robin the Frog (Robin is a one piece figure similar to Camilla)
8. Muppet Newsman
9. Captain Link Hogthrob in Pigs in Space outfit
10. Dr. Julius Strangepork, Pigs in Space outfit
11. Miss Piggy, Pigs in Space outfit
12. Reporter Kermit with microphone

Mikey's wish list for Lego Muppets series 3!!!

1. The Great Gonzo (red cape, silver shorts, white tank top) with partially eaten rubber tire
2. Miss Piggy in black jacket with spotted collar, with Foo Foo (one piece figure)
3. Kermit with director's chair, wearing beret and scarf, with acoustic megaphone
4. Walter wearing a Kermit shirt, with Pepe (Pepe is a one piece figure)
5. Uncle Deadly and Rizzo (Rizzo is a one piece figure)
6. Clifford wearing sunglasses with Bean Bunny (Bean is a one piece figure)
7. Marvin Suggs with his Muppaphone
8. Mahna Mahna
9. Snowth
10. Gorgon Heap (with horns and teeth, no ears)
11. Lew Zealand with fish and bucket
12. Beauregard

Plus more ideas:

  • Muppet Theatre Stage Proscenium with Statler and Waldorf's booth, and figures of  Kermit in his purple suit from season 1, Trombone Lady in purple suit (from opening theme), Droop, and Timmy Monster
  • Muppet Show Theatre Arches, set fits into theatre playset or stands by itself, comes with figures of Thog, and Crazy Harry
  • Muppet Theatre Backstage set with Pops, Gaffer the Cat (one piece figure), large and small Javas (one piece figures), Mildred Huxtetter, and George the Janitor 
  • Muppet Bus with Dr. Teeth (different outfit), Animal in chains (different outfit)
  • Pig in Space bridge set with two figures of crew pigs and Gonzo as Dearth Nadir
  • Veterinarian's Hospital with Rowlf as Dr. Bob, Nurse Piggy, Nurse Janice and Screaming Thing as their patient
  • Miss Piggy and the Biker Pigs
  • Miss Piggy and the Viking Pigs
  • Rowlf in a tuxedo with a grand piano
  • Sam the Eagle wearing Uncle Sam style outfit with podium and American flag themed backdrop
  • The Great Gonzo (yellow outfit from Muppets Take Manhattan) on waterskies with boat filled with chickens 
  • The Flying Zucchini Brothers three Muppet figures with their canon
  • Bobby Benson and his Baby Band
  • Memorable Muppet Skits set including an upright piano with several chickens, Zelda Rose with her Owl on it's perch, Behemoth with Shakey Sanchez, and some Clodhoppers
  • Bear on Patrol set with Fozzie and Link in police outfits, Banananose Moldenado, and Bullets Barker
  • Lubbock Lou and his Jughuggers jug band including Lubock Lou, Bubba, Zeke, Slim Wilson, Lou, and Gramps
  • Pack of various Muppet Monsters such as Doglion, Luncheon Counter Monster, Sunny Day Monster, Mean Mama, Lenny Lizard, Blue Frackle, Green Frackle, Jade Green Frackle
  • Pack of various Muppet Animals such as Sopwith Camel, Muppet Alligator, Guongo Ape, Muppet Tiger, etc.
  • Pack of various Muppet Birds such as Muppet Penguins, Fletcher, Betsy Bird, Rooster, etc.
  • Pack of various Spooky Muppets such as Mulch, Ghosts, and the Vile Bunch
  • Pack of various Muppet supporting characters such as Mutations monsters, Wayne and Wanda, JP Grosse (Scooter's Uncle), Muppet King, Muppet Queen, Muppet Royal Servant
  • Pack of Season 1 Muppets in purple suits such as Gonzo, Floyd, Zoot, Janice, Lips, and Nigel the Band leader
  • Muppets Take Manhattan figure set with Rizzo as a waiter, Tatooey, Chester, Masterson, and Yolanda (Muppet rats are each one piece figures), business frogs Gil, Bil and Jil, Miss Piggy with permed hair wearing blue suit jacket, red skirt and roller skates, Kermit dressed for fancy restaurant with moustache and wide brimmed hat
  • Jim Henson Hour studio with Jim Henson, White Lion, Digit, Leon, Flash with saxophone, Zondra, and the four Muppets known as the Extremes
  • Muppets Most Wanted Helicopter and Muppet ladder (various Muppets) and Constantine wearing black cloak
  • Assorted Muppets with Walter in his blue suit, Pepe in ballerina outfit, Kermit in disco outfit, Piggy in a summer dress with wide brimmed hat, Emily Bear (Fozzie's Mom), Koozebanian male and female aliens, Koozebanian Phoob, Great Gonzo in pink outfit, etc.


Sunday, March 24, 2024

My humble thoughts about the cancelation of the Muppets Mayhem TV series.

The Electric Mayhem Band: Animal, Dr. teeth, Janice, Floyd Pepper, and Zoot.

In my humble opinion as an obsessed Muppet fanatic, the Muppets Mayhem TV series was by far the best Muppet production to be made since the Muppet Show ended. No contest!!! I just loved, loved, loved this series! It captured the spirit of the Muppets perfectly!

It is far beyond incredibly stupid that Disney is refusing to produce a second season of this perfect, dream-come-true Muppet TV show. What a dumb-ass, lame-o, idiotic, stupefying, brain-numbing, nitwitted, boneheaded, imbecilic, muttonheaded, ignorant and moronic decision!!! Really, really, really dumb!!! So dumb one has to wonder if the folks calling the shots at Disney even give a s**t about the Muppets at all? 

How out of touch with your fan base to you have to be to cancel such an excellent TV series? This program is simply perfect!!! Everybody loves this show! I haven't heard any significant criticism about it. Not one peep! The show even won a 2023 Emmy Award for Outstanding Children's or Family Viewing Series. I don't know what standard the Disney folks are basing their concept of a successful TV show on, but they have clearly set the bar impossibly high to reach. This leaves me with only one conclusion... Disney executives are idiots!!! Total looooooooosers!!!! 

I find the cancelation of Muppets Mayhem concludes any speculation, we now know for certain that the Muppets are forever doomed in the hands of Disney. Sad but true Muppet fans! :(

-Mikey Artelle
Creator of Mikey's Muppet Memorabilia Museum and Muppet fan since 1973

...and there's also Lips who, if he were here, would probably add to the above something like... 
Muhhuh mubba a muff humma momo uh immle humm is mumble humma, eh humff!!!

Well said! You tell 'em Lips!



Monday, March 4, 2024

New Muppets Funko Pops!!!

It's been six years since the Funko toy company produced any Pop! figures based on the Muppets. The last one was the Superhero Kermit that was exclusively available at the Emerald City Comic Con in 2017, and limited to a production run of 3000. Today there are several of them listed on e-bay with an asking price of over $100 each. 

In late 2023 just in time for Christmas, Funko released a set of five characters from The Muppet Christmas Carol, including Kermit as Bob Cratchit with Robin as Tiny Tim, Miss Piggy as Mrs. Cratchit, Fozzie as Fozziwig, Gonzo as Charles Dickens with Rizzo, and a non-Muppet human character, Scrooge. There was also a two pack box set of Statler and Waldorf as the Marley Brothers. I'll add a photo of these shortly.


In early 2024 Funko released Baby Animal from the Muppets Mayhem TV series (above, top), and a Hot Topic excusive two pack set of Kermit and Constantine based on the movie Muppets Most Wanted. Curiously the movie title does not appear anywhere on the box. In any case, these are all very cool Muppet Funko Pop! figures which I could not pass up! 

A closer view of Baby Animal

Odd numbering for these new figures!

I'm very curious to know why Baby Animal was numbered 1492 as he's from a new series, Muppets Mayhem, so technically he should be number 1 from this series. However the better option would have been number 12, as Superhero Kermit was numbered 11 to continue the Muppets series. So it would have made sense for Baby Animal to be number 12 in the Muppets series. The Muppets Christmas Carol series should also have been numbered as part of the Muppets collection, but instead they were numbered as part of the Movies collection. That at least makes some sense unlike Baby Animal which seems to have been given a random number. Could it be a numbering error? 

Muppet Funko Pop! wish list!

It would be awesome if Funko released figures of the remaining Electric Mayhem band members as only Animal and Dr. Teeth were included in the original Muppets Funko Pops series. So if they made Floyd, Janice, Zoot and Lips we would have the whole band.

It would also be cool if they made Scooter, Rowlf, Bunsen, Beaker, a regular version of Statler and Waldorf, the Muppet Newsman, Sweetums, the Pigs in Space crew (Captain Link, Dr. Strangepork and Miss Piggy in their Pigs in Space outfits), Kermit in his reporter outfit, the Great Gonzo with Camilla the Chicken, Uncle Deadly with Pepe, and Pops with Gaffer the Cat (a Pop! of Pops!). That would be awesome, as it would bring the Muppets collection up to number 31 if we count Baby Animal as number 12!


Thursday, November 2, 2023

Update: Sesame Street tub toys mystery solved!

 

Sesame Street tub toys by Applause

This is the complete set of Sesame Street Tub toys made by Applause in 1997. It was a mystery to me if these were actually PVC figures, as stated on the Muppet Wiki website, or if they were instead larger sized hollow, squeezable tub toys. In September and October 2023 I managed to acquire all four figures in this set, so now I know for certain that they are not PVC figures and are in fact tub toys.

The above photo shows the tub toys next to standard sized Applause PVC figures for size comparison. As you can see the tub toys are quite huge compared to the figurines.

In my experience, these tub toy figures are harder to find, as they're not as common as most of the Sesame PVC figures are. I find that Applause Sesame toys that were made in the late 90's are often  harder to find as they seem to have been made in smaller quantities than the figures made in the 80's and early to mid 90's. 

See the Applause Sesame Street PVC Figures page of this blog for more info about these toys.

Sunday, September 17, 2023

Applause Cookie Monster squeeze toy!

Cookie Monster squeeze toy by Applause, 1997

In the late 1990's Applause made an odd series of figures depicting Sesame characters on tire tubes. I have seen individual photos of these figures online but I am not certain what size they are, or if they are PVC figures or squeeze toys like this Cookie Monster figure. The above figure is made out of soft rubber and is hollow. It may not actually be a part of this figure set as the other three that I know of might be smaller sized PVC figures, but I'm including it until I confirm otherwise. Below I've shown this squeeze toy next to a standard sized Applause Cookie Monster PVC figure for size comparison. As you can see the squeeze toy is about twice the size of a PVC figure. I had never seen this Cookie Monster figure before until I saw it on eBay in Sept 2023 so I had to have it for my Sesame collection. It's just adorable, I really like the design and sculpting of this figure! Applause made so many cool Sesame toys! Other figures in the set include:

Ernie sitting in the middle of a yellow Rubber Duckie themed tire tube
Big Bird sitting on a blue inflatable raft holding a paddle on his left side
Elmo lying with his hands behind his head on a dark green tire tube, floating character
Cookie Monster (shown above)

Size comparison of the squeeze toy with a standard sized Applause PVC figure



Friday, May 26, 2023

Mystery Count PVC Figure!!!

I'm hoping that there is a Muppet fan out there who knows something about this Count PVC figure!!! Please help me solve this mystery!


This is a a very odd yet nicely made PVC figure of the Count which looks to be about 3 inches tall. I've never seen the Count wear a blue short sleeve outfit with brown shoes before! LOL He's also missing his teeth and goatee!!! It's unknown if this is a bootleg figure or an officially licensed one, when it was made, or what company made it. It's also possible that this Count figure is from a series of Sesame PVC figures that I don't yet know about. If so it would be awesome to see pictures of the complete set. If you have any info about this figure please get in touch with me!!! mikey@pythorcomics.ca