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Wednesday, February 24 2016 16:02

Here They Come... THE MONKEES Action Figures

Though the series arrived 10 years before I was born, I found myself enamored with THE MONKEES during re-runs on WFLD Channel 32 here in Chicago - the same place were I first experienced many cool things as a kid (1966 BATMAN, THE GREEN HORNET, GREAT SPACE COASTER, etc.). I'm not sure what the current status is of new listeners finding their music (I've played it for The Rock Daughters on vinyl), or new viewers experiencing the show, but the folks at Figures Toy Company are releasing several different series' of MONKEES action figures, all done in a 1970s Mego-style, much like they've done with THE DUKES OF HAZZARD, KISS and the DC Comics SUPER FRIENDS. Announced over a year ago, these were actually supposed to have been released last Fall, but they're coming to Entertainment Earth this Spring...

Growing up, I never had any of the classic Mego figures - the 8" dolls with real cloth clothing based on pop culture icons of the time. I did have the 3¾" DUKES OF HAZZARD figures that Mego produced, but that was toward the end of their run, when lines like STAR WARS and G.I. JOE were hitting a new generation of kids like me with what would become the most popular format of pocket-sized figures. But for that generation before me, those 8" dolls were a huge deal, and they've stayed popular for decades, resulting in their revival through companies like EMCE Toys, Diamond Select Toys, Mattel and Figures Toy Company. I recently came across a commercial for a 1970s collection of BATMAN vehicles and playsets that's pretty fantastic. Four decades before Ben Affleck would don the cape and cowl to chase down a Lamborghini-driving Jared Leto as THE JOKER, kids were rockin these pretty sweet toys that were largely based on the 1966 BATMAN series and later cartoons...

2014 marks the 35th Anniversary of the DUKES OF HAZZARD, a show very close to my heart, and one that falls right in there with KNIGHT RIDER as part of that "Retro Pop Culture" thing that I like to share with my kids. I have a couple of seasons on DVD, but since CMT just started running them remastered in HD for the first time, I figured I'd take a peek and see if anything new was in the pipeline on the toy front, and boy, was I surprised at what's coming...