OAFE: your #1 source for toy reviews
B u y   t h e   t o y s ,   n o t   t h e   h y p e .

what's new?
message board
Twitter Facebook RSS      

shop action figures at Entertainment Earth


by yo go re

"I'm Yakko..."

The eldest of the Warner siblings, Yakko is the fast-talking leader of the bunch! Yakko looks ready to lead his siblings on yet another zany adventure.

That's the copy from the ReAction figure, because Super7 didn't put anything on the Ultimates' packaging - we figured it was better to at least use something from the same company. Animaniacs was the second cartoon produced by Steven Spielberg's Amblin Entertainment. Whereas Tiny Toon Adventures was an updating of the old Looney Tunes style, Animaniacs was a spiritual successor to even sillier symphonies, the sort of off-the-wall Tex Avery storytelling. Plus, while Tiny Toons had an overarching theme and the characters interacted with one another, Animaniacs's segments were mostly standalone. And while it may not have been as heavily merchandised at the time, Animaniacs has retained more of a cultural impact in the years since. That's why they got rebooted first, and why they're getting toys now.

With the gimmick that they'd been created in the 1930s, the Warners were designed with that sort of "black body, white face" look so many old cartoons had - a situation which, quite infamously, led to WB studio head Bob Daley flipping out when a promotional balloon of the character was installed on the real-world water tower in honor of the cartoon's premiere: no one had told him about it, and when he came in that day, he thought it looked like a malformed Mickey Mouse, so the balloon was taken down less than 12 hours later. Anyway, that's why they now have those pointy little whiskers coming up off their cheeks.

I don't know what I was expecting from this line, but Yakko is surprisingly large. Being a product of '90s animation, there wasn't a ton of consistency in how tall the characters were (and figuring it out is tough because any humans they interacted with were subject to extreme exaggeration), but this figure is over 5¾" tall at the top of the head, which is definitely not the same 7" scale most Super7 Ultimates are in. There's no world in which Yakko Warner is five feet tall. It's been said he's about the same height as Bugs Bunny, so somewhere from three to four feet? He seems like he should come up about waist high on a normal human-shaped human, which would put this toy in an approximately 10" scale? Can you even think of any other toys that would work with? You could pretend Civil War Giant-Man is at his base size, but that's about it. 1:7 is a popular scale for Japanese vinyl statues, but not action figures.

The Warners underwent a minor redesign between the original series and the 2020 reboot, but there's enough of a difference that we can say for sure this toy is based on the old cartoons. It's small things, like the shape of the arms, the width of the feet, or even the angle of his eyes. Other than the ubiquitous white gloves, Yakko's only clothing is a pair of tan smoky topaz pants held up by a brown belt. There are wrinkles at the lower pantlegs, where they bunch up around his ankles, and the waist is wavy, just like it's usually drawn.

Super7 really delivers when it comes to articulation. Yakko has swivel/hinges at the ankles, knees, wrists, elbows, and shoulders, and balljoints at the hips, waist, head, tail, and ears. That's right, articulated ears. And boy howdy, do they add to the expressiveness of the toy! The minor adjustments you're able to make can add a lot of personality to a pose, even with a fully static face. The cuffs of the pants do keep the ankles from hinging very far, and since the head is solid plastic, the sheer weight of it can pull the waist joint farther than you intended if you're not careful. And then over he goes!

We get a nice assortment of alternate, swappable body parts, beginning with hands. The normal set are fairly relaxed, with another pair that has the fingers spread wide, and then three designed to hold specific accessories: for example, a pink bag labeled "FUN" (from episode 72's "U.N. Me" - not exactly what you'd call a memorable sketch) or a crackling stick of dynamite. You can also choose whether you want his tail to be straight, or to have a couple harsh bends in it like Pikachu.

And then there's the alternate head. Instead of a neutral expression, this one has a giant, open-mouthed smile, and he's wearing a mortarboard. Now, imagine if that hat had been magnetic, like Palisades' Muppets, so you could put it on either head you wanted, and you could have a plain smiling head as well! If Lone Coconut could do it, so could Super7. The open mouth also makes this head looks like it's too big for the body, which isn't great. Anyway, the inclusion of this hat at all may tell you what accessory is next.

Easily the most famous sketch to come out of Animaniacs at all is "Yakko's World," a bit in which Yakko sings the name of every country in the world (at the time) in no particular order. Well, rhyming order, but nothing more concrete than that. As he sings, he stands in front of a map, wearing a professor's hat, and indicating each country in turn with a pointer. Now, in the cartoon, the map just fills the entire screen (it's eventually revealed to be a pull-down chart at the end of the sketch), but here they've done it on a freestanding blackboard. (And if you know the show, you can already see forward to why they chose to do that.) Weirdly, the board and the stand are separate pieces, meaning it can actually swivel around. But the pivot point isn't centered, and the larger half (thus the heavier half) is at the top. Meaning it wants to fall over backwards if you bump it. Why? Why, Super7? The set does include the pointer, and a hand closed tightly enough to clutch it. They'd have to have been fools to ignore Yakko's signature moment!

It's really nice to have such a major '90s cartoon star as an action figure at last, but weird choices were made. Super7 should have done Yakko in a size that was capable of interacting with anything else at all, then used the savings to include a magnetic hat or swappable faces or a Build-A-Water-Tower or something. Because this is good, but it could easily have been bumped up to great with a little more work.

-- 03/29/23

back what's new? reviews

Report an Error 

Discuss this (and everything else) on our message board, the Loafing Lounge!

shop action figures at Entertainment Earth

Entertainment Earth

that exchange rate's a bitch

© 2001 - present, OAFE. All rights reserved.
Need help? Mail Us!