Moe – The Three Stooges, Three Little Beers

9.7 Overall Score
Articulation: 10/10
Paint/Clothes: 10/10
Sculpt: 9/10

Clothes|Sculpt|Articulation|Lean and shiny body|First class collectors toy

Moe's head is a little too big|Socks left scuffs on feet|Maybe uses some thin plastic pins

Moe – The Three Stooges, Three Little Beers
Figures Toy Company
2015

Growing up in the 1970s I got to watch all the re-runs of a ton of awesome television that I wasn’t around for decades before. One of my favorite shows was The Three Stooges, in the 1930s these three fellows were hamming it up and getting paid for it.

Over time The Three Stooges is a show that has been syndicated over and over, because it’s just timeless. You just can’t get tired of watching Moe, Larry, Curly, and occasionally Shemp, Joe, Joe and Emil just going off the wall participating in things that we could only really find funny as long as it were them doing it, you know it’s just not the same when one of us, the fans tries to relive a funny prank that we watched The Three Stooges do.

I can remember when I was a kind trying to do some of the same pranks done in The Three Stooges, they just didn’t workout as I hoped, just like I saw them do it on television. I know, I was probably like ten years old, and thought I was funny or maybe I even thought I was one of the Stooges, nope! All I did was get myself in trouble, and annoy people around me.

With as much trouble as I would get myself into messing around after I watched a marathon of The Three Stooges after school, it was all so worth it.

And this brings us to my review of Moe from The Three Stooges as he appeared in the episode “Three Little Beers” by Figures Toy Company. As for myself I have been a fan of Figures Toy Company ever since I found out about the company. The thing is that I grew up playing with Mego dolls, okay action figures, but to me they will always be dolls. If you don’t know about Mego, Mego was the cool toy company for boys from 1954 to 1983, yes they did make some toys for girls, but a lot of the toys they produced were aimed at a boys market.

I was born in 1970, so my first decade of life I was bombarded by awesome toys and Mego were always my favorite, some of the toy lines that Mego offered were 1979s Pocket Heroes which were probably like almost the first actual toy that I would consider to be an action figure, Pocket Heroes contained both DC Comics and Marvel Comics heroes and villains which were made of molded colored plastic and had maybe six points of articulation, legs, arms waist, and neck, as dull as they were I had loads of fun with them and even though they didn’t look so good, they were rugged and have survived with me for probably 34 years of my life.

Other notable toy lines by the Mego Corporation are:

1971s Action Jackson which was an original toy line made to combat the popularity of Hasbro’s G.I.Joe twelve inch toy line.

1972s Worlds Greatest Super Heroes! (this was my favorite Mego toy line) since I have always been in to comic books these toys really were the coolest when it came to super hero toys, the line was limited but had some awesome characters in the line from both DC Comics and Marvel Comics.

1974s Secret Identity Figures. This was a spinoff of the Worlds Greatest Super Heroes! The toy line was made up of the alter egos of Batman, Robin, Superman, and Spider-man. The toy line was an interesting idea but the figures were always hard to find, well at least in the region that I lived in.

1973s Maddie Mod was directed at competing with Mattel Toys Barbie toy line. Mego eventually also gave us Dinah-Mite which was sort of like a combination of Action Jackson and Maddie Mod.

1974 to 1978 also gave us Mego television and movie, and music figures. This brought us awesome toy lines like Planet of the Apes, the Wizard of Oz, Starsky & Hutch, Wonder Woman, Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, KISS, Dukes of Hazzard, and Our Gang.

A few of these toy lines and more have been re-imagined by Figures Toy Company, and this is why I think this company is so awesome! You can see by the products that they produce that they are not only collectors and fans of the original product lines, but they also want us, the collector and fan to be more than satisfied with their reproductions and original releases.

As someone who grew up with Megos in hand I am more than honored that I am able to review some of the Figures Toy Company Three Stooges toy line.

With this said I finally present to you my first review of The Three Stooges toy line by Figures Toy Company. Moe from the Three Stooges episode “Three Little Beers”.

moe First I want to tell you about the nice, tight packaging that this figure comes in. It’s not your basic bubble card, it is made with the collector in mind. It’s basically a card with an image of the character packed in to a clam shell like bubble card which is hinged at the bottom and solely held together by a clip which reads “Figures Toy Company”, very nicely put together and I feel even classy for such a toy.

When you open the packaging, Moe is held down by four twist ties two on the arms and two on the legs, this is pretty much standard on most packaging of action figure type toys. The thing is that in this packaging the ties were simple to pull apart where other companies can make it a pain in the ass. Figures Toy Company really makes it easy for you to open, and pull the figure out of the package. This was really great, no fight ensued between myself and the packaging and Moe literally slipped right out of the twist ties. Moe is also packaged with a classic golfers cap.

Moe can be posed and made to look as he is in action as the figure comes with fourteen points of articulation which include the head, waist, shoulders, elbows, hands, knees, legs and feet. Figures Toy Company casts their figure bodies identical or as close to the original Mego style bodies, even the heads are made of molded, painted rubber and mounted on the same way as the companies predecessor.

This toy is classic just as the companies name boasts and you know this once the figure and packaging are in hand, and so far I have only told you about the packaging and body articulation, I have plenty more to go on this character. To show you how great these toys are I have to go beyond packaging, articulation and molding in comparing Moe to an original Mego figure, but first I have a little more packaging detail and layout of how this figure comes to you, the collector, the fan. Take a look at Moe below out of the package.

moe450x500 Out of the package you can see the lobby card like character sheet that would be the actual card backing on most other action figure toys where you would have to tear open the plastic bubble to let loose the figure. The card which you see is simply placed in the plastic clam shell like packaging with an additional plastic holder for the figure which it is tied to with twist ties, it looks good, and the simplicity of unpacking is just that, simple! Moe is 8 inches tall, articulated, comes as a Mego styled body with a molded rubber painted head and is wearing the clothes from the sixteen minute episode “The Three Little Beers” where Moe, Larry and Curly screw around on a golf course at a hoity-toity country club for the rich, where they are most definitely uninvited and trying to fit in.

Moe’s clothes look great! Pretty much miniature version straight out of the episode, the shirt, undershirt, pants and socks are actual woven and stitched materials, where the golf cap, and the shoes made of molded colored rubber. The golf cap is solely black rubber and the shoes are black and white.

Both shirts are held closed with an almost invisible line of Velcro, the back of the pants are held together the same way. The inner shirt has a stretch line which goes in between Moe’s legs (yes right where his pecker would be) and this holds the  shirt on tight and somehow brings the entire outfit together. At first I didn’t like the idea, it was sort of a pain in the neck to move the stretch line around because of how tight it is, but in the end after I had Moe naked and everything separated and then clothed him again, it just all made sense and worked out perfectly. Original Mego figures wore a one piece outfit or costume, well, not all of them but the ones I was really in to did, that was the Worlds Greatest Super Heroes! which I mentioned earlier. Other Mego toy lines like Planet of the Apes and Star Trek had some figures that were in two or three piece outfits, but none of them had the stretch line keeping everything tight and together, and I would know because I was one of those kids who was always taking the outfits off and putting them on other figures and then eventually losing all the costume parts like Star Trek phasers, or Batman’s utility belt, and even the entire outfit.

Something else that I should mention is that Mego was around like 35 years ago, and a lot of what they made even though it was super cool, was also super cheaply made. I remember Mego figures on the shelves at the local Lionel Play World and they would sell for around $2.50, now I was just a kid back then, and had absolutely no money, my parents fed my toy needs, and I remember them complaining about spending $2.50 on a Mego figure for me.

Times have really changed, and prices have blown up because of a collectors market and the demand for such toys. That was my first worry when I saw the prices on some of these figures, but as a collector and a fan I truly have to say that what I have taken over a couple of months to review is so beautifully worth it.

With Figures Toy Company you’re not just getting a Mego reproduction, you’re getting a work of art. Moe looks like Moe, the outfit is right out of the episode, when in hand it makes me feel like a kid again, and in my opinion that is what a product that you love, that you grew up with should do to you. Also since I haven’t added this in yet, Mego never made a Three Stooges toy line so this is all original, just the body is a Mego style. Take a look at Moe’s outfit below.

20150528_190742 Now you have to understand that with how much I like this figure, their are a few things I do noticeably dislike so I will lay this out right now. Moe’s head, even though it looks like Moe, or as close to Moe as possible, the head is just way too big, which in turn means that the golf cap is also too big, well because it is made to fit Moe’s head. This is something I noticed straight off. My other complaint is that decades ago Mego was having problems with the plastic knee and elbow pins. These were the first things to break in any Mego figure. These same pins are still being used in Moe, why not upgrade? Figure out how to make a new, stronger pin? Now it’s possible that these knee and elbow pins are stronger, but at looking at them they look like the same pins I have seen over and over again in the original Mego toy line. These are two sided pins, a male and a female side that fit together, but after some wear and tear on the original Mego figures they would snap and were always a pain in the ass to fix, my quick fix was a small nut and bolt. This fix was the same for any of the Mego 12 inch toy lines which were always snapping off legs mostly.

Now, like I said earlier, I don’t see these figures by Figures Toy Company being directed at a kids market, they are very nice and obviously by the work that is put in to them to make them look so great and price they are for sure aimed towards a collectors market, so it really may not matter if they are using the same plastic knee and elbow pins, because a collector most likely won’t be opening these or playing with them.

Another issue I have is that it looks like they are using the same body hooks. These are metal hooks that were attached to either rubber bands or nylon stretch bands and pulled all the limbs together to the body while creating sort of a star pattern inside of the main body cavity. The issue I have with these is that in the original Mego figures over time these hooks would rust and break off. Although the body hook which I looked at may have been made of a chrome alloy, at least it didn’t just look like cheap metal.

20150528_190855 My last issue would be that Moe’s socks left black scuffs on both of his feet. I’m not sure if the socks are dyed in a black tint or are just made of a black material but for whichever reason Moe had big black scuffs on each foot and it just looked shabby. I tried to clean off the black scuffs but they must have been there a while because they didn’t want to come off. Other than these small issues which I have with Moe, I think the figure is notable to any collector, it is really a must have, whether if you pick up the set or just Moe. In comparing the Figures Toy Company Moe body to one of my original(and very beat up)Mego Batman figures you can clearly see how much work Figures Toy Company puts in to there figures. I have to say that Moe clearly has a shine to his body, this is something that Mego never had as most of the bodies which they put out were dull and sometimes even had small leftover pieces from molding that was left behind unnoticed or were never cut off in the factory, this usually happened on the hands and feet or the molding seem behind the legs near the small pinholes. Moe’s body is indeed sleek and shiny, and even though it is basically the same body as any of the original Mego figures it just looks more professionally put together.

20150528_185309 So naked Moe says it all, despite the big head and the couple other things that I bitched about, the figure looks great! I can’t say it enough. It’s put together nicely, holds together tight, no flimsy limbs, and yes Moe actually looks like Moe. This is for sure the Moe that I would expect to see on television chasing Larry and Curly around with a frying pan or a golf club or being chased by some bad guys or forced to marry a woman he hates or playing dentist.

As much as I love The Three Stooges I have always been more of a fan of comic books, so the Worlds Greatest Super Heroes! were always the top of the line for me when it came to Mego. I know I have mention this several times now, but I just can’t ever forget about my childhood and some of the fun times which I had with Mego figures in hand.

I have taken some pictures of Moe along with one of my old Mego Batman figures to show you the similarities along with the betterment’s of the Mego style body by Figures Toy Company. Starting off with the hands to the waist and then to the feet you can see the similarities and any small differences between the Mego and the Figures Toy Company body casts. In my opinion, the Figures Toy Company body is much nicer and a classic buy for the collector in all of us.

Below are pictures of the Moe and Batman meetup, showing off hands, feet and more. It’s like a 1980s dance off, but with plastic toys. Okay maybe not that cool, but cool enough in itself. Please enjoy Moe and Batman as they show off their pecks and biceps for your approval. It’s goes down now! Unlike Moe who shows it all off below the waist, Batman comes with matching blue undies.

20150528_185448 I always thought it was interesting how some Mego figures came baring it all and others had a colored pelvic area which seemed to match their costume.

For instance Batman has blue undies, and if you ever got Spider-man naked he was wearing red undies. So why doesn’t Moe have undies? I don’t know, but I do intend to ask and find out and when I do I’ll update this review for you all.

In any case you can see that both Moe and Batman have the same bodies for the most part, although Moe’s is much brighter and Batman is sort of just dull, this wasn’t only Batman though, from what I remember all Mego bodies had the same dull flesh color. You can compare the heads and see that Moe’s head is just a hint taller than Batmans, even with the bat ears. Sorry about not using a flash on these images, my bad, lot’s of shadows.

20150528_190202 You can see that both backs are pretty much the same, and you can vaguely make out the Mego Corporation imprint on the back of Batman. Moe sure is shiny and looking good. Maybe Batman needs a shower? In any case you can clearly see the same waistline, arms, where the legs begin and how the rubber heads plug right in to the torso.  The next picture below is of both Moe’s and Batmans hands. You can see that the hands are the same on both figures. The next picture is of Moe’s and Batman’s feet. You can see that Batman’s feet have smaller plastic pins than Moe’s which gives me the idea that maybe Moe’s pins are a little more secure, maybe even tougher. All the rest of the plastic pins look like they may be the same size as the Mego style. You can also see what I was talking about when I mentioned that sometimes their is some extra molding left uncut or unrefined and left hanging as you can observe in the palm of Batman’s hand to the right.

20150528_185922 The next few pictures after Moe and Batman’s feet are Moe and Batman hanging out on one of my vintage radio control car projects, I figured Moe could use a cool looking golf cart and maybe Batman could use a Batcart?Does Batman even play golf? I have no idea, but I think it looks cool anyway.

One of my favorite things about the Mego Worlds Greatest Super Heroes! toy line was the vehicles and play sets which I would like to see a revival of to go along with the DC heroes which are put out by Figures Toy Company. Sorry I know that I am all over the place here but I really do love this stuff and would like to see it all. Whatever can be done would be great to have all over again, and if you take a look at the Figures Toy Company website you can see all the awesome toy lines that have, both originals and reproductions, and all awesome! Stay tuned for my next Three Stooges review coming up in July 2015. Above header image by Nenyao

 

 

 

 

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Scott
Author: Scott View all posts by
Scott grew up in Miami, Florida interviewing punk, metal and hardcore bands, reading comic books, playing with Star Wars action figures, Shogun Warriors, and MEGO dolls. Scott's work has appeared in Flipside Magazine, Scrape Magazine, Zaphod Fanzine, El 'Zine De Eugene, Rational Enquirer, Maximum Rock and Roll, Rated Rookie Magazine, POPSmear Magazine, Crying Clown Fanzine, Slug & Lettuce, ThoraZine, Fact Sheet 5, 'Zine Guide, O/Z Magazine, Asian Trash Cinema, Asian Cult Cinema, Euro-Trash Cinema and more. He has two culinary degrees and attended art school for a Visual Arts degree with a minor in Music Journalism. Scott was the owner of Action Games & Comics in Clermont Florida from January 1999 til it's demise in December 2011. Scott can sometimes be seen flying across Florida at supersonic speeds, you just need a good eye to catch him.. :-)

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