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by yo go re

We mentioned in a recent review that Toys Я Us carries more mogwais than they do gremlins, but that varies from store to store: for instance, my local TRU doesn't seem to carry the Gremlins line(s) at all; when I want them, I have to go to the next town over. And man, do I want them!

Mohawk, as you may already know, is supposedly the reincarnation of Stripe, the wicked little bastard from the first film. And that raises some interesting questions: are the mogwai that pop off their "parent" influenced by him at all? Do they represent some facet of his personality? If so, what kind of internal darkness is Gizmo hiding that he's twice given birth to evil shits like this? Or is he so sweet and friendly because he keeps expelling the evil from his body, like Adam Warlock creating The Magus? Or was Stripe just such an utter a-hole that he clawed his way back from death just so he could be evil some more? And if he was the reincarnation, why didn't they call him Stripe again?

There were a few clues right away that this little mogwai was more sinister than the others. George and Lenny had dark fur, but Mohawk is black. He's blacker than black. He's "taking a dump after feasting on Oreos for breakfast, lunch and dinner yesterday" black. And while the other mogwais have white patches that look fairly organic, Mohawk's white stripes are done to military precision. The line looks unnaturally straight - and while humans prefer symmetry, we also know when something is too perfect to exist in nature and it makes us uncomfortable.

Another hint that this guy might be up to no good? His teeth. Most mogwais have square teeth, but Baby Mohawk has tiny razor-sharp fangs. Evil! His eyes have red and yellow irises, but that's an average color - it's only Gizmo who breaks the trend with brown.

Mohawk gets the same articulated eyes as the rest of the mogwai figures, which remains a cool feature, but he also gets something else really neat: rooted hair! Yes, softgoods are generally worse than their sculpted counterparts, but in this case, it was the right choice. They could have sculpted his hair on, but then it just would have looked like a lump on his head - this wavy, frizzy mess looks more like the hairdo seen in the film.

Just in case you missed the opening sentence of that last paragraph, the eyes are articulated. There's a knob on the back of his head that rotates the eyes as you move it, creating many posing possibilities. Beyond that, the hips are swivel/hinge joints, set deep into the body. The wrists are plain swivels, but the elbows and shoulders are balljoints (concealed by overlapping layers of fur, so he mostly looks seamless). The neck is balljoined, and so are the ears. I'd almost swear his mouth is articulated, as well! Mohawk uses the same body as all the other mogwais, but thanks to the paint, you'll never be able to tell.

Mohawk and his series of Mogwais came out last October, and my TRU hasn't restocked any Gremlins since then. Another series has come out since then, but there's no evidence of that in my store. I'd buy Mohawk wherever I found him, though: he may be super evil, but he's also really good.

-- 05/08/13

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