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The land of 12-inch horror figures was once ruled by Sideshow Collectibles. Back in the day, they put out some amazing Universal monster, Freddy, Jason, Leatherface and TWILIGHT ZONE figures. They’d still be king to this day if they hadn’t started concentrating more on non-horror licenses. Well, lucky for us, a 1/6-scale savior has risen in its place: Amok Time.
For the past year or so, this New York-based company has been releasing or announcing an impressive lineup of horror-related 12-inch and 6-inch figures (it even has a 22.5-inch Creature from the Black Lagoon!). Being a collector, I’m most impressed by its Monsters HD line. It’s not so much the quality and detail that tickles me so; it’s the odd choice of characters. Never in my life did I think I would be able to proudly display a 12-inch Blacula, Rondo Hatton, Teenage Frankenstein, Hideous Sun Demon (the list goes on, but you get the point), all on the same shelf. But the one we’re talking about today might possibly be the company’s kookiest, most obscure release to date: the monster from 1964’s THE HORROR OF PARTY BEACH!
Priced at $69.99, the creature comes with the standard accoutrements: poster art, a short movie bio and plastic stand. Although advertised as 12 inches tall, this beast lankily reaches an impressive 14! There’s an awkwardly shaped ball joint inside the elongated neck piece that makes it a little tough to move the head too far in any direction, and the rest of the articulation is pretty standard fare for a figure of this type. The paint job on the head, hands and feet is very impressive; however, the sculpting lacks detail compaired to the monster suits seen in the film (“The first horror monster musical,” by the way).
The seaweed body suit is made of a strange nylon material that is not as fragile as it looks (my cat can attest to that). I love the fact that when the figure is posed in certain positions, you can see the skin-tone paint on the wrists and ankles under the suit. There is also a very prominent zipper going down the creature’s backside. Usually these points would hinder my score, but in this case I like to think it was intentional, considering the source material.
While displaying this little monster, I found myself spending far too much time deciding on a clever pose. I soon realized that this is more than likely the zaniest nutjob in my collection, and a standard standing-with-arms-at-sides pose would suffice.
Now hurry on over to Amok Time’s official website (or if you’re ever in Long Island, check out its heavenly shop) and pick up one of your own! I recommend bringing it to the beach and staging your very own atomic-age monster mash. There were only 500 of these bad boys produced, so your time may be limited. I’m curious to see if this figure sells out or not: Part of me feels that the character’s obscurity would be an attractive plus to many of us fright fans—but on the other hand, are there really 499 other weirdos like me who a) are getting tired of having 20 different versions of the same character on their shelves, and b) actually enjoy THE HORROR OF PARTY BEACH (or maybe just find its creature a tad adorable)? Regardless, it’s releases like this that make collecting toys remain so much fun for me.
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