Tuesday, July 16, 2013

REVIEW: McDonald's Happy Meal Despicable Me 2 Giggling Tim Minion

Produced for McDonalds | Released July 2013

McDonald's Happy Meal Despicable Me 2 Toys
I really enjoyed the original Despicable Me and am looking forward to seeing the sequel (which is currently playing in theaters, movie-going fans!). You can imagine then how pleased I was to see McDonald's offering a series of Despicable Me 2 Minions with each Happy Meal, as - and I'm sure I'm not the only one - I've always had a soft spot for those little fellas.

Subject to your locale it appears there's a pretty good line-up of individual figures available at your local drive-thru, each sporting their own fun play feature including grabbing hands, movement and, as in the case of today's subject, sound effects.

Giggling Tim Minion
Having not seen the sequel I'm assuming that there are some ''Hero'' Minions in Despicable Me 2, given that the promotion focuses on a few named characters. In this case, we have Tim who features - as you've probably already gathered - a ''giggling'' function. We'll come back to that once we've taken a closer look at the figure itself.

As you can see, the sculpt captures the Minion look perfectly, with his work coveralls, goggles and little gloves all being present and correct. It's a really fun-looking little toy, as you can see from these images, although I have to admit I would have loved to see him standing, rather than sitting but that's a very minor criticism that's really more of a preference than anything else.
I particularly like the detail on the mouth, which has that kind of ''clean'' CGI look to it and the eyes are especially expressive.
One very minor criticism is that the two halves that are used to construct the figure have a very hard edge to them, meaning there's a seam running from the top of the head and down the side of the body. It's not hugely noticeable on these photos and in certain lights/poses it can be hidden but it's worth noting that it's there.
And as you can see on the figure's rear is a ''speaker hole'' (along with a couple of screws) which is used by the toy's ''giggling'' feature. It's a mechanical, non-battery operated system that is activated by shaking the toy up and down. I've no idea about the engineering behind it but there's a small weight/ball that shifts as you shake the toy, which I assume rubs against another piece within. It's similar to the sound a straw makes when it's rubbed against a beverage cover, so if you've ever experienced an annoying child doing that in a restaurant then you'll know the kind of sound I mean.

Whilst the effect is cool, of the two Giggling Tim Minions we received in our Happy Meals, only one worked properly. The other, when shaken, simply rattles. I'm hoping I was simply unlucky and this is a very limited defect, but I just wanted to point this out.

Final Thoughts
If - like me - you've always wanted a Minion to sit on your desk or toy shelf then there's no reason why you wouldn't dig this Giggling Tim - or indeed, I would assume, the other toys in the promotion. The sculpt work is really cool, the paint app is neat and although the giggling gimmick is just that - a gimmick - this is a fun little toy I can see fans of the movies really enjoying.

If you've ever had a Happy Meal toy then you'll know exactly what to expect with this figure. It's fairly robust, well made and a neat little ''freebie'' to enjoy along with your chicken nuggets and apple slices. Given the popularity of the original movie (and I would assume the sequel) I could see these being pretty popular so if you are a fan of the Despicable Me Minions then you'll find a lot of fun here. It's not a super-poseable, ultra-detailed collectible but it doesn't need to be and is pretty much exactly what you want from a Minion desk toy.


Final Score: B

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