McFarlane Toys isn't the only company to recognize the fans' love for Robocop. Mezco also grabbed the license for their Mez-Itz line. Can the market really support two Robos at once? Well, since you don't have to wade through a sea of crapass TCM figures for the chance to find Mezco's, the answer's probably yes.
Mez-Itz are 3" tall block-style figures built around a generic body. Unlike Minimates or Shockinis, Mez-Itz are rounded and have more distorted proportions, and their likenesses are more caricatures than strict representations. It makes them great monitor decorations.
Robocop was slightly cartoony to begin with, so he's made the transition to Mez-It form very well. McFarlane's Robocop just came off the assembly line: he's all shiny and proper. Mezco's, meanwhile, has been on patrol for a while now. Instead of a gleaming blue steel finish, he's got a dingier look, with light and dark patches tarnishing his chassis. Most of his armor is made from seperate rubber pieces glued in place: the shoulders, hips, chest and back, as well as the pistons on his ankles.
Despite the soft material, Mezco didn't skimp on the detailing: this version's got all the same little embellishments as his bigger cousin. His helmet's not removable (or, if it is, it's glued in place pretty darn well), but he still has more of a face than the Movie Maniac. if you look up under his visor, you can see little cartoony Peter Weller eyes. Robocop comes with his gun, the modified Beretta M93R. While it doesn't store inside his leg (far too big for that), it's nearly the same size as McFarlane's and has more detail.
Mezco always gives us multipacks when they pay for a license, so Robocop's not here alone. Packaged with him is Murphy's ex-partner, Officer Lewis, all geared up in her SWAT-style uniform, complete with little OCP logos on the shoulders. Other than the logos (and the legal indicia on the back of her right leg), Nancy's flat black below the neck. Or, well, no, that's wrong: most of her is flat black, her shoes and gloves are gloss to make them stand out. Nice design.
Anyway, above the neck, Officer Lewis is still geared up. She's got on a gloss black helmet with a little flip-up visor. Her face is definitely cartoony, with its tiny nose and big huge eyes. Paint job's simple, but everything stays where it should. Lewis has her sidearm, a litle handgun perfect for bringing some justice to the lawless streets of the far-flung future that is 1990s Detroit.
While it's cool that we got Lewis, she's really just an extra in a set that would have sold without her. We were already getting Robocop - so who do you package with him to really complete the set? If you've got any kind of common sense at all, you make the ED-209.
The Enforcement Droid, series 209, was the hardware under consideration before OCP tested out Robocop. Nothing pisses off a walking murder machine like being replaced by a newer model, so you just know that Robo and ED aren't gonna get along.
ED-209 is not built on the same Mez-It body as the other figures, but he does still have the same sort of cartoony appearance as his fellows. His basic shape is the same, but it's a bit distorted: the big flat body with the black surface, the two giant piston-hammer legs and the gun-bearing arms are all here. ED isn't quite as detailed as the prototype pictures, but this is exactly the robot we all know and love.
The figure is molded from grey plastic, with black details painted on and just a little bit of silver. Obviously we're not going to get McFarlane-levels of detail, but this is still a very good piece. ED-209 moves at the shoulders, waist, hips and knees - all peg joints, allowing for a nice range of swively motion and plenty of poses. Plus he just looks so cool next to Robocop!
Overall, this is a fun little set. Not as detailed as the Movie Maniac Robocop, but it's easier to find and has a better selection of characters. Todd may have wrapped up the 6"-scale license, but Mezco slipped in and nabbed the rights to make these little 3" guys, and they've done a good job of it.
What other properties do you want to see Mezco turn into Mez-Itz? Tell us on our message board, The Loafing Lounge.