Rancid - Skeletim (Wolf Head) review

And out come the wolves. Out come the wolves!
Their paws trampling in the snow the alphabet.
I stand on my head, watch it all go away.

Funko Friday

(Yeah, I know ReAction figures are just Super7 now, not Funko, but if you think I'm passing up even the loosest opportunity to do a wolfman review, you're nuts! Let us adore our beautiful son.)

People point to Dave Grohl as one of the rare artists who was not only in one world-changing band, but also managed to go on to start another highly popular and successful band afterward. And yeah, indeed he did, but let's hear it for Tim Armstrong, who, before Rancid, formed both Operation Ivy and the Dance Hall Crashers! Good lord, talk about a pedigree!

A few years ago, Super7 added Rancid to their ReAction lineup, along with several other classic punk bands. Now, while Rancid had certainly used skeletons in their promo art over the years, they didn't really have a mascot, and those skeletons didn't have an identity; but when the to came out, it honored Armstrong by being named "Skele-Tim." From the 2020 original, there have been several distinct variations: Charged Skeletim, with a different hairstyle; Skeletim with a hat; Skeletim that glows in the dark; and now, Skeletim with a wolf head.

Other than the head, all the Tims use the same molds: combat boots with the laces laddered instead of crossed (get your act t'gevver, Hobie), jeans with rolled cuffs, and a black coat white shoes, black hat, Cadillac leather jacket with spikes on the shoulders and lapels. The jacket is open far enough to reveal a sculpted ribcage in there, and while most of the figures have a neck bone that makes them look like they're wearing a priest's collar, this one honors his lupine nature by covering that with a studded dog collar. His pants are dark grey and his bootlaces are unpainted, but he does get a few extra zippers painted on the jacket.

The important change is the head, obviously. You can't call this "Skeletim (Wolf Head)" if he doesn't have a wolf head, right? This is definitely a punk rock werewolf, with piercings in his ears (rings in the left, a safety pin in the right), a big gold septum ring, a tall red mohawk. His brow dips down between his large eyes with their red irises, and his mouth is open just slightly to reveal some fangs. His fur is a light gray - you might expect, since this is a skeleton, he'd just have a wolf skull head, but apparently that werewolf healing factor is a powerful thing!

ReAction figures are known for their articulation; very specifically, they're known for only having five points of articulation: the hips, shoulders, and head, all just plain swivels. This figure isn't about to change that, so don't expect any super dynamic poses out of it. He will, at best, look like he's flailing around wildly.

The original Skeletim figure came with one guitar and a Molotov cocktail. The guitar has been a consistent inclusion, but no other figure has come with the flaming bottle. This figure is the first (turns out the one with the hat came out after Wolf Head) to come with a second accessory: another guitar. Tim's signature guitar is a Gretsch G5191, done here with white accents on black; the second guitar is a camo-printed ESP LTD Volsung, making it Lars Frederiksen's instrument. I guess the idea is that if you buy a couple different figures you can have them performing together without it needing to be two of the same guy? Skele-Tim's hands are shaped to hold the guitars - Armstrong plays lefthanded, so the figure's right hand is turned up, while his left faces in.

Rancid's biggest album was 1995's ...And Out Come the Wolves (making this figure's choice of head very thematic), making them one of several bands that helped revitalize mainstream punk in the mid-90s. But they've kept releasing new music, with their most recent album, Tomorrow Never Comes, released just four months ago. And it's still good music! Heck, a cut Rancid song won Pink a Grammy Award in 2003, so they've clearly got the chops. I'd been keeping an eye open for the original Skeletim, but never saw it anywhere; so I was very pleased when Wolf Head appeared at Target, handily hitting two of my niche interests.

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