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Omnivorous P.I.G.

by yo go re

Back in the day, the Palisades messgage board was the place to be. They handed out the news, answered questions, had giveaways, showed sneak peeks at upcoming figures, all that jazz. Sometimes the fans even got to give input on the way lines were going, whether by voting for lineups or variant decos or what accessories a figure should come with. Personally, though, the high point was getting to name a character.

If it stinks, odds are that Omnivorous P.I.G. is behind it. Not only does he carry an odor that would knock a buzzard off a dump truck, but he also carries with him a ton of misdirected anger and the backing of Money D, his boss. When Money needs something done, he sends his goons. Led by Omnivorous P.I.G., these rough and tumble rumblers believe that you strike first and ask your questions to the guy who is still standing.

Hey, I wonder if "Money D" is the rhino guy in Series 2? He was wearing a fancy suit, which says "boss" to us! Anyway, when we first saw these figures, they had no names beyond "gorilla," "mouse," "rabbit," etc. - just their species. For fun, we started bandying about potential names for them on the board. And while my suggestion of "Ebony" for the elephant didn't catch on, "Omnivorous P.I.G." did.

The idea behind Crittaz was to take the "urban vinyl" aesthetic and not charge three or four times their actual value - so everything's done in big chunky shapes and smooth lines. Omni has a squarish nose (snout), and a large lower lip, though no tusks - after all, he's a pig, not a boar. We don't get to see his eyes, because he wears his black boonie hat so low, and his tiny ears poke out the top.

Despite the name, Omni doesn't share much with Biggie other than his name (and his waistline). Big Poppa is best known for wearing either a Cosby sweater or a nice suit, while this guy is wearing cargo shirts and vest. There's a sweatband around his right wrist, and a watch with a thick leather band around the left. His black shoes have Adidas-style stripes sculpted on them, but sadly, he does not have a curly little tail poking out of his pants anywhere. Aww!

In keeping with the urban vinyl inspiration, the original plan for Crittaz (at that time called "Urbanimals," before Palisades' legal team said they couldn't use that name) was that each character would have multiple repaints - colorways, as the artsy-fartsy crowd calls them. In a perfect world, you would have had your choice of three different designs for Omnivorous P.I.G.; of course, in a perfect world, we would have gotten more than one series of these toys and Palisades would still be hitting home runs today, but what can ya do? Anyway, the colors on this toy were much more subdued when it was shown at Toy Fair. Pink skin and earthtones for the clothes work a lot better than what we ended up getting.

To begin with, OP's skin is white. Shockingly white. Blindingly white. "Nominated for an Oscar" white! There's a light gray on his snout and ears, but that's it. Granted, that pure canvas really makes his ultra-90s black tribal tattoos stand out nicely - he has them on both biceps, the back of his left hand, his right cheek, and inside his right ear. The white skin also contrasts with his blaze orange vest and its red pockets - there's a spot on his neck that's clearly meant to be white as well, but the paint wasn't thick enough to cover the orange plastic. The back of his vest has a red and black crescent moon design, so overall, he looks like the bass player for some forgotten second-stage Warped Tour band.

Another thing the Toy Fair piggy seemed to have that this one lacks would be balljointed shoulders. All the Crittaz ended up with swivel joints at the neck, waist and shoulders, while the prototypes seemed more animated. Surprisingly, the ball chain necklace did make it all the way from Toy Fair to production. It tends to get pinched between his hat and his vest, though.

Omnivorous P.I.G. stands 3¼" tall, but the way he holds his arms means he takes up more space horizontally than verticaly. The final colors they chose for him aren't the best, but I'm still glad to have him.

-- 02/07/16

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