The Tick

Originally posted at on Mar 19, 2010

This is another toy I borrowed from Shit Critic, along with the Venom The Madness and toys. Though it's not as flash as those toy figures, you have to admit that it's got a certain style to it.

One can't help but love The Tick. He was created by cartoonist Ben Edlund as an absurdist version of your friendly neighborhood superheroes way back in 1986. By 1994, fox had made him famous with an animated series that spawned a lot of media attention which eventually led to the 1995 toy line from Bandai. The line covered many of the show's characters, including The Tick's sidkick Arthur, Die Fledermaus, El Seed, and Man Eating Cow.

This particular Tick comes from the "Tick Talkers" sub-line of the same year. There were 4 toys (re-tools/re-colors) in the line and the gimmick was that they could talk. Each had a little button on the back that when pressed would activate the little speaker and he'd say lines from the show. From what Shit Critic told me, the phrases were things like "Oh, Maybe not..." and "SPOON". Since I only watched a few episodes, I can't really tell you what he meant by that.

Natural Tick. Image from
The one that I'm looking at is the "Natural" Tick. The other 3 have various clothing on top of the Tick costume. They are the "I Dig Dinosaur Neil" Tick, "I Love Wheat" Tick, and "Tourist" Tick who is dressed in sunglasses and board shorts. How often do you see superhero toys in board shorts?

Clockwise from upper left:
"I Dig Dinosaur Neil" Tick, Tourist Tick,  and "I  Love Wheat" Tick.
Images from

Naturally, this toy being about 15 years old, he's already out of the box and the talking feature no longer works. I could probably replace the batteries, but I'm a lazy bastard and I'm not sure if they even still sell LR44 batteries anymore. And this thing needs 3 of them.

Even without the gimmick, he's still a great little figure. The sculpt is fantastic, capturing the square jawed dumb lug perfectly. You could leave this on your desk and I'm sure you'd smile every time you saw it.

The paint obviously didn't stand the test of time very well. Actually, it's not really painted except for his face. He's mostly cast in blue, which makes sense since his entire super suit is blue. I don't know why, but the plastic of his torso has already been discolored. I figure it's cause my friend left him in the sunlight or something. Still doesn't really bother me, since he still holds up well.

He's also very sturdy. He's got to be, since toys back then were made for kids who tossed figures across the room and regularly devised repugnant tortures for their GI Joes and their sisters' Barbies.

His articulation is standard for the era; 5 points. Neck, shoulders and hips. He won't stand a chance against modern Marvel Legends joints, but you can't really argue that since during the time 5 points of articulation was about par. Thankfully, Bandai didn't try and do too much with him, so he can just stand and stare at you. Somehow I feel that's less boring than having a statue that's stuck in that one dynamic pose.

Honestly, there's not much to say other than this is an excellent toy, despite being a decade and a half old. If you can find the Shocker Toys version of The Tick that would also be good, but since we didn't get that series here, I'll see if Shit Critic will sell this to me.

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