By Jonathan Alexandratos
While we’re still a few months from Boglins’ official return to stores, backers of the toy’s Kickstarter campaign are starting to receive product now. Having tossed a coin to that particular Witcher a while back, my King Vlobb conquered my mailbox last Thursday. If you haven’t read our general overview of the Boglins’ return, I’d recommend doing that here before diving into my specifics. Assuming you’re all set with the big picture stuff, here’s what Boglins fans can expect from the new puppets:
Kickstarter orders come in this pretty standard shipping box. I’m always slightly weary of shipping boxes that tell everyone what exactly is inside them, but who’s really going to steal a Boglin?
You really can’t beat this box. It’s a great recreation of the 1980s cage, sparing no expense to preserve the fun of the original. The “First Edition” stamp is a nice touch, too, as nothing makes collectors’ hearts skip a beat like a first edition. Creator Tim Clarke led this campaign to bring the toys back, which explains why each Boglin is such a faithful representation of the ’87 models.
Once you tear into the perforated hole at the bottom of the box, you’ll find everything you need to complete your Boglin inside. There’s a file card, instructions, and the tail of your Boglin, wrapped in tissue paper, along with a couple of items you need to secure this piece to the body. Keeping the tail separate in this way helps make sure it doesn’t get broken or torn by being crammed into the cage. Attaching it to the Boglin body is easy, and feels quite secure.
The rubbery material used in this Boglins iteration is deeply satisfying for those of us who enjoy the tactile qualities of various toys. It’s floppy, but not too much so, and feels almost slimy to the touch, despite containing no actual slime. The toy manages to be fun to shake around without any fear of the material tearing or puncturing.
Ultimately, there’s a lot of play value in the new Boglins. Though the target market is collectors, I’d imagine a few parents would want to get these fun creatures for their kids in order to pass along the nostalgia. Most of the toy delivers on its Jim Henson-esque promise of a quirky puppet that offers the puppeteer a lot of movement options. Of those, I’d only suggest that the eye controls could be a little stiffer. As it is, there is a little slide inside the head that allows the eyes to be moved from side to side, which works well enough, but could do a better job of holding the eyes in place once they’re moved. That, however, is a minor point unlikely to bother a huge number of buyers, if any. Ideally, Boglins establish their market presence once again, and we continue to receive new, wild characters for years to come.