Madballs, Weird Balls, Super Bouncing Weird Balls, Monster Balls, Blurp Balls, Krazy Balls, Freakballs, Squirt Devils and other nameless imitations.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Speak Of the Devils

"Horrible Series"

The new line of Madballs re-piqued my interest in monster-shaped balls, but it was actually these awful dudes that got me into the spiraling world of knock offs. Squirt Devil's are available (even still) at every Dollar Tree I've been to, and are surprisingly cool. I still don't know why they're called Squirt Devils though. They are hollow rubber that you can fill with water to "squirt" at friends, but none of them are devils, or even demons. I guess Squirt Monsters didn't sound as good?
If you can make your way past the broken frames and cheap dish soap to the toy aisle in your local Dollar Tree, you may still be deceived by the Squirt Devil packaging. Not a single solitary package is uncrushed. Which makes it look like you're buying a red piece of "fake vomit" with a rip off Madball logo. I still can't figure out why this is. Other items at dollar tree are fine, but ALL of these are squished in the same way. Perhaps the vacuum sealing at the factory worked too well? But fear not intrepid monster ball purchaser, they will resume their spherical form once released from their plastic prison! There is something else misleading about the packaging. The image in the upper right suggests you fill these idiots with water, then they explode when squeezed. Not so. They have one hole in their mouths or eyes that shoots water, not five.

One thing that isn't a lie is the "Horrible Series" moniker. There is another set that is more like the "Sick Series" of Madballs, where you squeeze them and brains or gross pops out of a spot in their heads. Lame. As I've stated before, I hate that kind of tacky dust-collecting rubber. The odd thing is that those are called "Crazy Ballz" and are also in the "Horrible Series". Maybe that is a lie? I don't get it. OK, let's get to the dudes.
First up is the Crack Head (Bash Brain) imitation I've dubbed Frankie. All these sculpts are pretty cool and very well detailed despite very limited paint jobs. Frankie has the protruding eye and exposed brain of Crack Head but also some stitches, sloughing skin, hair, and a sinister grin. The color is almost exactly the same as the revamp of Bash Brain from 07, but he still has his own charm. The designer that sculpted these definitely had his own style.
Sniffles is next on our list. He seems to be the least derivative of all the Devils ans looks more like a straight zombie than any Madball or imitation I've seen. Maybe it's the sunken cheeks and exposed teeth? He's also got a LOT of sloughing skin and general slime. This paint job is particularly bad though. I'm assuming that's an eyebrow and NOT a caterpillar above his left eye but that color makes it hard to tell. And is that a piece of skull or a pyramid coming out of his head (all these shots are face, one side and top of head at the end)?
Bounce-bounce is my favorite. He's also less plagiarized than some of the others and looks like a general monster. I really like the bizarre Klingon-esque ridge atop his head. The screw that goes all the way through is a ice touch as well as his slimey face. Come to think of it, his face reminds me a lot of a Boglin. I like that. I wish there were more Boglins in ball form. Last but not least is the least original of the crew, The Claw. If he doesn't look like Slobulus I don't know who the hell does. The green skin color, the hanging eye, the creepy oddly spaced teeth. The only differences between the two are his really cool soft looking exposed brain and again his lone eyebrow. Seperated at birth? Maybe death. The Claw is lacking the greasy hair that Slobulus has but the similarities are too much to be ignored. Like Slobulus found a pod with an alien that was trying to assimilate him but wasn't quite done. Had it had more time it would've looked and acted just like Slobulus.

In conclusion, though a big smaller than Madballs, and painted poorly, these dudes are a steal for a single dollar! The sculpts are amazing with a lot of really fine details and interesting stylizations. They hold up well because of the rubber they're made from and they do squirt water, if you're into that sort of thing. Buy them!

1 comment:

  1. I saw these in a Dollar Store in NJ and did manage to find one of each that were not crushed in the packaging, but yeah it was crazy how the rest of them were so squished.