When I heard NECA Toys had accquired the rights to release Playhouse inspired toys, I was excited. When I heard Paul Reubens had asked them to re-release the original '87 Matchbox line, I was more excited. Now having bought one, am I still as excited? We'll see.
A casual jaunt into Spencer's brought me face to face with the re-releases. Present were Pee-Wee, Miss Yvonne, and Cowboy Curtis, though Jambi & The Puppetland Band, and Pterri are also in the first wave of re-releases.
After some debate, I bought one figure. Why just one? We'll get to that. But I think it's pretty obvious who I purchased.
Yep, the man himself, Pee-Wee Herman.
First off, NECA went to great lengths to recreate the look and feel of the Matchbox line. The carding is pretty much dead-on, including the big "AS SEEN ON TV" that was present on the original packaging.
Now we'll move to the back of the packaging, and we'll see why I only bought one figure.
Hmmm..Collect 'em all, wave one, 12.99...HOLY SHIT, WHAT? Yeah, that's not an illusion folks. This little piece of nostalgia ran me 13 dollars. Granted, I'd pay more for the original online, and NECA has to pay for the licensing fees, but Jesus.
So once we get past that, let's take a look at the figure itself.
As you can see, Pee-Wee here retains every detail of the Matchbox version right down to the crazy red cheeks, and squishy head. He comes with no accessories, but then, neither did the original, so I can't gripe too much. In the end, it's going to be up to the individual whether or not they want to collect a line with such a steep price tag. Part of me suspects the prices will vary, because Spencer's has a nasty habit of jacking up prices simply because they can, but I would guess 10 bucks a pop is about as cheap as you'll find them. In my case, I kind of balked at the price, but since I never had the original figures, because my parents simply didn't care for the show (and this was pre-masturbatory Pee-Wee too), I'm not gonna lose sleep over it.
And note that the words "Series 1" are featured very prominently, so there's a chance we'll see others from the original line, like Reba, Globey and Randy, and my personal favorite, the King of Cartoons. So was it worth it the money? I can't say that it was, but I do know that a Pee-Wee figure, with an added touch of a wasted ball of tinfoil put a smile on my face.