Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Hey dudes! I've got a sweet mystery for you this week. Actually, it's not a mystery as much as an observation, because I solved the mystery part already. It's probably not that interesting of a story either, unless you're into fake Madballs...which, if you subscribe this blog, you are!
This duo of bouncy blasphemies were auctioned off separately by the same seller on eBay and advertised as unopened, mint condition Madball knock-offs called Odd Balls. I've seen Odd Balls before and they're usually the six original Sadballs repackaged. I had never seen either of these molds before so I attacked those auctions with nerdy force. And prevailed!
When they arrived, I got a sneaking suspicion that these weren't Odd Balls after all. I mean I've seen those Sadballs packaged as Horror Balls and Monster Balls but it's always the same six guys. So the new designs were my first clue but then also.... the packages had been opened then restapled.
I can't necessarily blame the seller for this because a company set on bootlegging Madballs probably doesn't have any scruples when it comes to repacking stuff. But I also notice that the Odd Balls card says "Odd Balls are re-inflatable". Well, these guys are not, they're straight up foam. The final nail in the coffin was vague sense of familiarity. The Horn Head specifically. In my many "rip off Madballs", "imitation Madballs", "fake Madballs" google image searches, I came across the above image, from an X-entertainment article about monster balls. I remember gazing at the vertical two eyed Horn Head (aka K-6) with longing. It's a cool design! To further prove my point, I'll ask the jury to look at exhibit K-1, who's unique head injury matches our "Odd Ball" exactly! We have Krazy Balls in the guise of Odd Balls in the guise of Madballs! Ohhhh the villainy!!
Anyway, check this crap out! This guy rules!! Known in monster circles as K-6, he's obviously gunning for Horn Head's position in the gross ball world. It's too bad he's so budget though. While, I love the two vertical eyes design, it's not executed with much precision. It kinda looks like a brain damaged 8 year old drew a Madball and had no capital for production. I do like the blobby brains coming out of the back of his head but that's not enough to make him good.
Oooofa! When you look at them side by side you can really see why AmCo garnered all that praise from kids looking for something gross. The detail and refinement is unparalleled (aside from Rude Ralph and Weird Balls). K-6 is painted without the subtle gradients that Horn Head displays. You can also see the teeth not only go back in space but have gums showing. K-6's are clumsy triangles and that's all.
I should say that despite all this bashing I am quite fond of these dummies. They have a vulgar charm all their own. And I have to applaud them for trying to elaborate on an idea rather than just stealing one. Next up, K-1. This dude is kind of a counterfeit Crack Head but in subject matter only. They're both victims of some sort of horrid beating or accident but they don't really look alike. K-1 has a garish vacant tooth smile and one long stitched wound bisecting his face. He's also got hair and...gulp...that disgusting gash on his head! That's really the perk that sells this jerk. The bunched up skull in the front and the straight smooth divot from front to back...ew. It almost looks like someone was looking at actual corpses while they designed this. Maybe Tom Savini drew it up or something.
Again, you can see the contrast in quality from one to the other. The paint variations and accuracy are so beautiful on Crack Head and K-1 looks like garbage! Totally unprepared for the photo shoot!
In conclusion....if you can get these guys as either Krazy Balls or Odd Balls you should. You shouldn't pay a ton, but they're a great addition to any knock off collection. Way better than Super Bouncing Weird Balls, Foul Balls and even some of the smaller knock offs Krazy Balls have a unpolished allure much like Sadballs. Happy hunting nerds!