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Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Hasbro, 1987
Day #436: July 5, 2012
Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action FigureHorny Toad
Japanese name "Drillfrog"

Battle Beasts Series 1
Item No.:
#07
Manufacturer: Hasbro
Includes: Silver "Log Driller" scythe, second randomly-selected figure (I think mine came with Sledgehammer Elephant)
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: approx. $3.99
Availability: ca. 1987
Other: This sample has a "Wood" rubsign

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Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action FigureThe Battle Beasts came out in that great period of my life after Star Wars was a dead thing and before it came back, plus when I got Horny Toad an action figure was still a legit toy. Things like "points of articulation" weren't even a consideration until older fans when I was roughly 12 or 13 pointed out that I was wrong in liking old Kenner figures for what they were, but eh, this isn't about them. It's about the fact that Hasbro released a figure with no name, and then shipped out posters telling people its proper name was "Horny Toad."

Its Japanese name made a little more sense-- I say "little" because the thing on his arm really didn't look like a drill-- but the design was really quite good. Compared to other action figures of its day, the fact that this guy had warts, panels, rivets, and all sorts of little sculpted elements was quite remarkable. Really, the only place this figure (and most Battle Beasts) fall short are in the hands, which are all pretty much the same looking for the first couple of series. Featureless, they do a bang-up job holding the weapons and filling their toy-driven role.... but it's the rest of the figure that really stands out. If you look at the close-up headshot of the top of the review, get in close and look at the paint and the sculpting. The green plastic lets the warts melt right into it, and there's a subtle ring under the eye. The painted armor is beautiful, the color really brings out the detail when the shadows dance off the lines. Of course, the orange spikes, the drill, and the "lights" on the chest also look great and make the figure really come to life.

By today's standards, this figure isn't very impressive with its 2 points of articulation. As a kid, though, I was pleased he could stand up and sit in vehicles, plus hold his weapons without toppling over. (Of course, at that age, the notion that a figure could be released which could not stand wasn't even an consideration.) While it was a step back from the standard 4-5 joints of his day, you got two figures for roughly the price of one, and what kid doesn't love that? Horny Toad also predated the Ninja Turtles toys by a bit, which of course had their own bipedal mutant frogs. I still like this one more, it's just so... geez, just look at it. You don't have any other toys like this.

While I expect it can never happen, I'd buy an upsized version of this figure if one were ever made. It's just too gorgeous. Gentle Giant did 12-inch versions of the old 4-inch Kenner Star Wars line, if someone decided to do a 6-12-inch version of the original sculpt of this figure out of essentially the same materials it would probably be a centerpiece in my home. And this isn't even my favorite figure in the line, it just looks amazing. (And yes, this is the one I got in 1987.) Battle Beasts is one of the rare toy lines where every time I pulled them out of a dark box, it made me really happy to see them again. And every time a new one or a new announcement got made, I still get excited. So yeah, I'd suggest you get one, but odds are these don't occupy quite the same place in your heart as they do for me. Complete specimens of this figure have been climbing as of late, so if you can get one for under $10 consider yourself lucky. $15-$20 is no longer out of the question.

--Adam Pawlus

Additional Images

Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action Figure Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action Figure
Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action Figure Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action Figure
Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action Figure Hasbro Battle Beasts Horny Toad Action Figure

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