I really couldn't tell you what was going through my grandma's head when she found these at a garage sale, but when she showed them to me the first time all I could think was, "Cool!" They were action figures and I love me some action figures, pure and simple, no matter how ridiculous they may be.
And ridiculous they were, seeing as how they were cows that also happened to be gunslingers from the old west. These come from Hasbro back in 1991, according to the little stamp on the backs of the figures, which is right about when the trend of introducing anthropomorphized hero teams was all the rage thanks to Ninja Turtles. As far as a trying to following in TMNT's success, I'd say they didn't quite make it. The cartoon only lasted a short time, but it still got the required action figure line and video game adaptation.
What we see here are four of the line, which consisted of maybe seven or eight figures. As I say when I get into it during the video, I can't for the life of me remember a single thing about the show, especially the names of the characters. Upon looking up some info about the series, that's not so crazy seeing as how these figures don't really look much like their cartoon counterparts. For instance, the main cow's action figure has a completely different shirt than the one he wears in the show. Suffice it to say, the names I guessed in the video were all entirely wrong, so it's up to you to recall them from memory.
I always found the little holsters to be amazing for some odd reason. I have no real reason to be so enamored with them, but it was fun to pull them out and then put them away so easily. More toys need to have accessories that are capable of slipping snugly into holsters and such.
The same goes for how the pistols are held. Look how well those fit into the moldings of the hand! Man, oh man, the bane of my childhood existence was the inability to get figures to hold onto their accessories properly, at times getting to the point that I had to get pliers in order to cram some little dealy into a character's grip. But not here!
Then there were some guns like this rifle here that didn't make any sense. No character could hold it at an angle that looked useable, so the best they could do was hold it up as if to say "This is my boomstick!" And I didn't even know what Army of Darkness was as a kid, so do you think I got much enjoyment from that? No.
This was the best I could do with the vulture guy, who strangely has a pistol on his head. Still no clue what the little clip was for. Perhaps a hat? No idea, that's for you to explain in the comments.
Having never seen enough of the cartoon to understand what was going on with the figures, I just naturally assumed this was a bad guy, despite having a sheriff's badge. Turns out, upon doing some simple searching, that I was correct. I mean just look at him. Doesn't he look like his skin is melting or something from being on fire? I always thought he was a flaming bull, so there's that at least.
Take note of those articulated horns. What possible reason would a kid have for twisting those horns around, other than to make his look all sad, like I've done here? No idea, but you gotta love the multiple knives sculpted onto the figure that aren't removable. Bummer.
Last was this figure, who looked like a buffalo to me and therefore was named Buffalo Bill whenever I played with these at my grandma's house. Sadly, because he wasn't the cool cowboy with the double pistols, the best this guy with the whip could ever be was the sidekick (a mainstay of most of my action figure plotlines), but at least he was much more capable that sidekicks from other series of mine.
For size reference, here is Beaky the Vulture (my name, not his official name) standing next to my Mutating Michelangelo figure. Come to think of it, Ninja Turtles never crossed over into Moo Mesa plotlines. This makes Moo Mesa one of the few self-contained plots within my childhood. Never realized that until now.
And one more reference shot for you to gauge how short these are compared to toys now. At the very least they're very sturdy toys, which is a plus. Right now these appear to be fairly rare online, but not overly difficult to find used. They seem to go for around US$15 used and out of the original boxes, but in-box will run you quite a bit more. I mean, who really has these?
Feel free to talk on in the comments if you do or do not remember these. And bonus points to anyone who can answer all the questions posed in the video. Enjoy!
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