11 Bootleg Toys That Are Completely Insane
Let's say you work at a sketchy toy company and your boss tells you, "Hey, let's make a fake Spider-Man action figure." You could simply take a real one, change a few details, and call it a day. No one would give a shit. Your boss just wants to make some quick cash, and the parents who will buy it just want to shut their kid up for a second.
So why, then, are so many of these cheap knockoffs so brain-shatteringly insane? Someone, somewhere, was trying to do the bare minimum to get around copyright law and accidentally came up with some hilariously bizarre concept, like ...
Ninja Hero Rider Frogs
You know how the song goes: Ninja Hero Rider Frogs, Ninja Hero Rider Frogs, Ninja Hero Rider Frogs ... Battery Operated, Galloping Horse. Despite the oddly familiar look, color scheme, weaponry, and choice of martial art, these toys (which you could order from this shady-looking wholesaler) are clearly a wholly original creation in no way meant to confuse your parents after you asked for a Slam Dunkin' Donatello for Christmas. And while we'd never doubt the wisdom of Master Splonter's teachings, we have to question the effectiveness of operating a katana from a moving horse, given that all the Rider Frogs appear to be missing one eye.
"Don't worry, I'm sure there won't be more riding accidents
now that I have no depth perception."
Then again, that eye patch/horse combination does give the Rider Frogs a considerably more rugged look than the competition -- they are the Conan The Barbarians of the anthropomorphic animal kingdom. In the box art, that is. In reality, their pretty pets make them look completely and unashamedly fabulous:
PLOT TWIST: The frogs are dwarves; this is a My Little Pony.
It's kind of fitting, then, that despite what the packaging promises, the battery-operated stallions don't so much "gallop" as "turn into a fancy four-way vibrator."
Mr. T's Mighty Car
Did Mr. T get turned into a van by a witch? Did someone murder him and use his body parts for an art installation, like a Hannibal villain? Or is he simply so vain that he decorates all his vehicles like that? Whatever the case, the only thing certain is that there's now a major "combining famous figures with cars regardless of logic" industry going on in Taiwan, where this inexplicable toy was made. And in case you think this monstrosity is just a goofy Photoshop hoax on the part of ToyNerd.com (where we found it), there are videos of this shit in action. Behold:
"I pity the fool who made me!"
There's a lot to process here. First, Mr. T has a glowing head that bobs up and down in unison with the police lights on his back, as a frantic siren sound plays on a loop. Is this ... is this the mighty Mr. T mating call? Second, you might have noticed that Mr. T is carrying a huge battle ax and a machine gun, presumably to fight other family vans.
Not gonna lie: We haven't been this afraid of Mr. T since Rocky III.
We have to imagine that somewhere a child is watching The A-Team for the first time and wondering why the guy with the Mohawk doesn't have a glowing head and car powers. "Come on, Mighty Car! Stop pitying those fools and chop them with your ax!"
Tricycle With B. Rider
Hey, it's Batman! And he's looking more badass than ever: The box art finds him staring solemnly into the distance, completely unfazed, as multiple volcanoes erupt behind him. That's a man with balls of steel right there. Surely this bat-tricycle will not disappo-
"Alfred, look, no training wheels! WHEEEE!"
The collector at BootlegActionFigures.com got hold of a whole box of these Chinese knockoffs, for some reason. Leaving aside the fact that it's incredibly difficult to drive a tricycle while wearing boxing gloves (trust us), what the hell is wrong with Batman's pecs? It almost looks like he's covered by a shell of some sort. Hey, wait a second ...
Yep, that's just Batman's head on a repainted Ninja Turtle body, like the sort of hybrid Dr. Moreau would create if he was a huge nerd. Then there's the tricycle itself. Due to Batalangelo's body proportions, the vehicle is useless at fighting crime, seeing as the only way to position him is with his face squished down into the handlebars, or else he'll fly off when you engage the tricycle's pull-back action and let it fly.
Lucius Fox's designs really went downhill after the Alzheimer's diagnosis.
We're noticing that the bootleggers' TMNT fever is almost as intense as their Batmania. Speaking of which ...
Little Pluckies Ninja Protects
Last time, we showed you a toy gun that was clearly made to murder Ninja Turtles. Apparently the TMNTs themselves read our article and decided to upgrade their gear for protection -- Little Pluckies Ninja Protection! Whatever the shit that means! Knockoff toy collector "benchilada" found this for sale in Greece, and, as you can see above, Shredder appears to be the first victim of these new, more bloodthirsty Turtles. Though it's unclear if they shot him or if he just fainted from the impression.
Note, however, that Raphael isn't only attacking his enemies: He also stole Leonardo's sword, Donatello's belt, and Vincent D'Onofrio's stare from Full Metal Jacket.
Unless that's actually Michelangelo after his bandana turned red
from the blood spatter.
Another thing to keep in mind before you get this for your nephew's Bar Mitzvah is that this is actually a functional friction gun -- as in, it produces real sparks and heats up slightly when you use it. Here's hoping the future Michael Bay sequels don't actually use these murderous flame guns, or the Little Pluckies might become the most horrifying thing to come of this franchise since they started a boy band.
Batman + Transformers = Batbot-Changer
As Batman said (growled) in The Dark Knight, he's whatever Gotham needs him to be -- in this case, a bitchin' missile-strapped car and a giant Japanese-style robot, both at the same time. Alternatively, the Taiwan-produced Batbot-Changer is what happens when Batman leaves his Batmobile unattended in some dark alley and a drunken Decepticon bumps dick-first into it. Speaking of dicks, the clunky, barely articulated Batbot has an impressive number of uses, as it also serves as a simulation of what John Holmes must look like wearing a towel:
Including the stomach tattoo and the missiles.
While merging Batman with a Transformer is admittedly the most awesome idea ever conceived in a fourth-grade algebra class, the bad news is that you need to be a Bruce Wayne-level detective genius to even play with this thing. Just look at these incredibly complicated assembly instructions:
"Logic Sold Separately."
Is Batman a hypocrite for swearing never to take a human life and then turning into a giant killbot with weapons of mass destruction literally coming out of its knees? Probably, but we're not gonna be the ones to tell him.
Motorcycle The Pooh
Motorcycle The Pooh (which you can totally order from this questionable Chinese retailer) promises "exciting experience, infinite joy," but all it delivers are hurtful lies and infinite deception. Not only is that not a motorcycle (it's an ATV) but the driver, instead of being Winnie The Pooh, is some potential child predator in a Barney-esque suit. After all, what better way to attract kids than to play the hit 2012 song "Gangnam Style" while spinning in circles and flashing hypnotic lights?
Aaaand, thanks for the seizure.
In all seriousness, we'd love to have been at the meeting where this thing was invented. How did they go from Winnie The Pooh to "Gangnam Style"? Was there seriously no one there who didn't suffer from motorized vehicle dyslexia? And why the ever-loving fuck is Pooh's foot thinking "SMART!!" on the box? We have a feeling that one whiff of the air in that room would cause you to fail every single drug test for the rest of your life.
Has Pooh always pooped lightsabers?
And while we're on the subject of drugs ...
The PCP Station (which at one point you could order from Amazon) is one of many game consoles intended to be shaped just enough like the console it's ripping off to maybe fool the odd grandparent here and there. Not to be confused with the PlayStation Portable (PSP), the PCP Station can play games like Street Overlord, Nonsuch Fly Racing, Chanticleer Hegemony, and Super Mary -- which, disappointingly, is a Mario ripoff and not a game about Jesus' mom kicking ass.
Hopefully this HD gameplay didn't blow out your computer's graphics card.
If those graphics look familiar, that's because you probably had a LED watch in the '90s that could do the same thing. You can also play a flying game called Thunderbolt Airplane and, if you're lucky, one we've dubbed Superbolt Maryplane: the same flying game, but with the Mario ripoff graphics accidentally superimposed, rendering it unplayable.
"No, no, it's the Mario skins DLC! That'll be $19.99."
And while we're on the subject ...
Neo Double Games
The same strategy as above can be seen deployed with the Neo Double Games (most commonly known as "Goddammit, Grandma"), which of course looks nearly identical to the Nintendo DS. And to be fair, it is pretty close in functionality to a Nintendo product -- more specifically, those crappy Game & Watch toys from the early '80s where you could beat the entire game in one toilet trip.
The first game in this version is Soccer, a genre that is boring even in 1080p. Let's see how it fares on a two-inch screen:
It's somehow actually worse than the inactive bottom screen.
That is to say, eye-poop. Still, the double screens are pretty neat, right? Double the fun and all? Not really, since the bottom screen doesn't work. See, you actually have to pop out the bottom screen/game and attach it to the top screen to play Street Fighter ... which turns out to be Soccer but with a different background.
Thus making this slightly more disappointing than getting a Wii U.
Flying With Motor Superheroes
Yes, like 40 percent of this article is Batmen, because there's just something about the caped crusader that has captured the imagination of the shitty toymakers of the world. Perhaps it's his iconic costume, or his tragic origins, or his ability to soar through the skies aided by nothing but the fan surgically attached to his feet. Watch how majestic Flying With Motor Batman looks in action:
Up, up, and go away.
OK, yeah, that's just a cheap toy plane reshaped into Batman form. Someone saw one of those things at a dollar store and said, "You know, this would make a lot more sense if it looked like the only superhero known for not flying."
This is another find from BootlegActionFigures.com, and at least the prestigious Flying With Motor line did manufacture other versions based on somewhat more appropriate superheroes -- like Superman, Spider-Man, and Superman again, but in the wrong color.
Oh, is this the Nicolas Cage version?
Wait, why do they look like they're desperately trying to break out of the packaging? Oh, shit, they're wrapped in the magical cellophane from Superman II, aren't they? Damn.
Super Electric Thomas
How is "Let's turn Thomas The Tank Engine into a giant death robot" a concept that more than one toy company has found financially viable? We told you before about a version of Thomas that likes Voltronning with other trains, but Super Electric Thomas -- found in less reputable shops in Japan -- needs or wants no help from anyone else. Just look at his face. Those are the dead eyes of someone who has stared into the abyss and caused it to run crying to its mommy.
"No. I said all your clothes."
Wherever Super Electric Thomas walks, loud, frantic train noises follow -- the "Omar comin'!" of the giant robot world.
The Dynamic Duo: Batman And ... Space Flyman?
The last toy on our list is also the last Batman toy anyone will ever need. Note that we're not including just bootleg toys there. The collector at WeirdoToys.com found these Hong Kong knockoffs at a toy show, with the seller claiming to have discovered them abandoned in a warehouse. Yes, it's the premise of the saddest Toy Story sequel ever.
Let's start with the fact that this Batman has perfected his logo so that it can't possibly be misunderstood: Now it literally says "BATMAN" across his chest, since the big bat alone left it too ambiguous. He's also finally secure enough in his masculinity to wear his favorite bright red shirt in public. His cape is currently in the wash, though, so he had to steal a tablecloth from the dining room table.
Wait, we take that back: That's clearly a crusty Kleenex.
Meanwhile, Robin has not only gained a bat-logo on his chest, but according to the packaging he has graduated to a new title: Space Flyman. To celebrate, Batman bought him some blonde hair dye, but we see that it's already wearing off.
"Robins are birds ... birds fly ... we technically live in space ... SPACE FLYMAN!"
Wait, uh, what's that on the back of Robin/Flyman's card? Computer, zoom in:
ZOOM OUT, ZOOM OUT.
Huh. It seems that Space Flyman isn't very picky, since he "beats off any opponent with his strong muscles." Anyway, this version of the dynamic duo is so popular that someone created animated-style fan art in their honor, though we very much doubt that the resulting cartoon would be PG-13.
Ian Ury is Pip Ury's twin brother and likes to write for Cracked and stuff. Drop him an email at IanMartinUry@gmail.com, or follow him on Facebook, Twitter, or his blog. Follow Vicki Veritas on Twitter, and be sure to check out her website. Looking for a new party card game? Chris Rio wants you to download Cheer Up! for free right here. Steve Athens creates TV Tropes pages obsessively to put decades of useless knowledge to use; email him at email@example.com.
We aren't done tossing bizarre toys your way. See everything from RobertCop to Spader-Man to Beat-Magnum True Hero in The 15 Most Unintentionally Hilarious Bootleg Toys and The 10 Most Unintentionally Hilarious Toys Exported by China.
Also follow us on Facebook because we make a slammin' grilled cheese sandwich that we won't share with you at all.