Freaky Geeks are a new line of 50c vending machine toys with a decidedly ''urban vinyl'' feel to them. Although I'd seen them online before (although I can't find where now...) I was surprised to see a machine vending the Freaky Geeks toys at my local Publix. Four quarters later and I had two Freaky Geeks in-hand, the first of which is Knuckles, the subject of today's Cool Capsules.
Before we go any further, there's something we need to address. Take a look at this shot of the vending machine insert, showing the figures in the line:
Now check-out this advertising image that shows the toys outside of the insert, where you can really see the paintwork and excellent detailing on the figures:
They look pretty awesome, right?
And how about this promo video?
These things look great! Look at how detailed they are and how well-produced the line looks!
Now look at my Knuckles!
Where's his hat and shoe detail? What about his black mouth and white teeth? Or the whites of his eyes? Or even the blue body paint?
Caveat emptor and don't believe the packaging.
OK, so that was a major disappointment for me. I expected much more (and not unreasonably, given that Gogo's Crazy Bones aren't much more expensive and are all painted) and it's kind of off-putting to see that the figures aren't really as good as they should be...
It's a shame, because the actual design is pretty cool. There's a massive hot rod culture influence on Knuckles (I want to say it's an Ed ''Big Daddy'' Roth-inspired piece but I seem to recognise him from somewhere else, too - maybe one of Rob Zombie's Ed Roth homages?) and there's some cool details in the sculpt, like the baseball cap including a logo, his boots having laces and - in what I think is a first for That Figures - he has nipples. The facial sculpt is also great, with some nicely detailed teeth and an insane expression on his face.
The production quality though lets this down. There are some pretty hard mold lines down his right-hand side and the paint - what little there is - is very sloppily applied. It's a real shame, because - as I say - the sculpt and design are both really cool.
It's a real shame the production quality doesn't match-up to the design, as these could be superb toys. As it is though, they fall into that ''just OK'' category and are nowhere near as cool as, say, the Bok Choi Boys or Gogo's Crazy Bones. If you can look past the disparity between the advertising and the toy, you might enjoy the Freaky Geek line. For me, though, they're really just an also-ran and unless I've got a severe case of Toy Buying Fever and a lot of spare Quarters, Knuckles and Cy-Fi will be the only two Freaky Geeks in my collection.