When living in Los Angeles, I saw a lot of stores that seemed designed specifically to cater to people who can't read. Do you like Domino's Pizza? You're going to love Domingo's Pizza. Do you enjoy shopping for groceries at Von's? Give Jon's a try. The Ratmobile (White) is one of a few cars being sold in 2013 that have a name that looks a lot like "Batmobile" on the pegs, and "Bad Raditude" might be confusing as well - of course, it also looks like a Batmobile.
Since its debut in 1988, the Ratmobile has been available with different wheels and in a few different colors - a 2011 release could even change color. In 2013, two versions are shipping - early in the year it was dark grey, and later it started showing up in white yet again, this time with some pretty nice ear, mouth, eye, and whisker paint. The first samples I saw had rotten paint jobs, but this one was dang near perfect. I'm sure some day in the future Mattel will augment this mold to include a pink tail or a painted nose, but for now this is great - particularly for a buck.
Like many of the fantastical creature cars, the rat has a metal undercarriage and wheels which tend to spin longer than most of his contemporaries on the pegs today. If you fire him out of a launcher, he tends to go far and smoothly - our sample didn't fly off the handle or veer off to the side. Most previous releases had silver or gold wheels, this one has metallic magenta on his rums. It looks pretty cool, and there's a driver's seat between the creature's head and the engine embedded in its spine. I'm not sure if this is supposed to be cool or cruel, but the fantastical beastly designs are appealing, fun, and no doubt infuriating to people who don't understand the need to have a toy rat with wheels to send flying across the house.
These kinds of cars are incredibly appealing to me, mostly because it showed just how wacky some of the designers - in this case, Larry Wood - could get with a 1:64 scale toy car. The late 1980s were loaded with particularly amazing and weird designs, many of which are still in production today with minimal changes. I would say some of the greatest signs of success in a toy line is when I see something and immediately say "I should get a few more to send to a friend of mine." It's so much fun, I want other people to have one, too.
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