Bigfoot. He’s the closest thing cryptozoology has to a superstar. He’s been the subject of countless songs, books, comics and TV shows. At the height of his popularity in the 1970s, Bigfoot was such huge pop cultural draw that an entire new genre of film — Sasquatchploitation — came into existence. (These types of flicks continue to gain the attention of audiences to this day, although why they all seem to star Lance Henriksen is anyone’s guess).
So Sasquatch is on the monster A-List for sure. Naturally as such, he’s inspired plenty of playthings over the years. But which of these toys are worth tracking down like an elusive forest dweller that may or may not exist? Enter today’s Daily List, which focuses on the best Bigfoot action figures (and a slightly poseable vinyl toy for good measure) ever made.These things won’t elicit The Legend of Boggy Creek-style scares, though trying to track them all down might cause you nightmares.
Before we begin, a quick note: this list is deliberately devoid of toys based on Yetis or Abominable Snowmen. The reason is that this particular author doesn’t consider them to be the same as Sasquatch/Bigfoot. Plus to include them here would result in a list as large as Bigfoot’s first dump of the day. No Harry and the Hendersons toys either, because really, fuck that friendly Bigfoot noise. And with that bit of tedious explanation out of the way, let’s begin!
7) Marvel Legends Sasquatch
Having never met a trend it couldn’t mine for financial gain, Marvel Comics introduced characters inspired by disco (Dazzler), C.B. radio (U.S. Archer) and, of course, Bigfoot (Sasquatch, duh) in the late-1970s and early ’80s. First appearing in a 1979 issue of Uncanny X-Men, Sasquatch is arguably the most successful of these trend-exploiting characters as he’s been a steady part of the Marvel Universe for 33 years now. Character merits aside, he earns his spot on this list due to appearance alone. His Marvel Legends figure works as both a reproduction of the Alpha Flight staple and as a great monster toy in its own right. Besides, if I didn’t mention him on this list you guys would hunt me down like a rampaging Yeti.
6) Accoutrements Bigfoot
Not merely content to sell insane (yet wholly necessary) novelty products like bacon soap, Archie McPhee decided to branch out into action figures with their Accoutrements line. With apologies to fans of the Crazy Cat Lady and Waitress figures, the greatest creative achievement of the line is the Bigfoot figure. From posing the figure in the package in a recreation of the infamous Patterson film pose to including a mini stamp pad that allows you to leave the big guy’s footprints wherever you like, Accoutrements has created a toy that is a valentine to Sasquatch and his legions of followers…most of whom couldn’t get their hands on this thing quick enough when it was released a few years back.
5) Bigfoot One
On the surface San Francisco-based artist/culture jammer Bigfoot One seems like just another guy looking to break into the lucrative Sasquatchploitation industry. Yet once you delve into his works you’ll see that there’s a genuine respect for the hairy hominid, his cryptoological brethren and the environment that flows through his work. That’s probably a good thing, because STRANGEco’s vinyl figures based on Bigfoot One’s art are a serious use of fossil fuels. Not to worry though, they’ve been sold out forever. If you’ve got the type of spare cash lying around so you can afford one of these on the secondary market (where they sometimes go for upwards of $400), you probably have a cottage on the moon ready for when global warming really becomes an issue. As for the rest of us, we’re way fucked. So might as well run up those charge cards buying limited edition Sasquatch toys!
4) Cryptozoology Bigfoot
In 2003, Mezco’s Cryptozoology line gave us plastic replicas of Bigfoot, the Mothman and the Jersey Devil. Sadly, catering to niche audiences isn’t never the wisest business move and the line died a quick death. While it’s a tragedy that I don’t have a Loch Ness Monster or Jack the Ripper (or a Loch Ness Ripper) figure, there’s some comfort to be found in the fact that Bigfoot here proudly guards from desk from any errant Sasquatch hunters and/or Portlandia refugees.
3) G.I. Joe: Search for the Sasquatch
Well, fuck. Part of the pain that comes from writing a list like this one is that it drudges up memories of old toys long gone. Craving a decades old supporting character from The Six Million Dollar Man (more on that in a bit) is one thing, but when the desired figure in question is less than 10 years old? That my friends is a special kind of torture reserved only for toy collectors. In 2008, the G.I. Joe Collectors Club released a special “Search for the Sasquatch” set inspired by 12″ 1970s Adventure Team Joes. It came with a Joe, an awesomely cheesy Bigfoot, some accessories and, oddly enough, a tent where the pair could apparently work out their differences in the most depraved manner possible. Eww. If only G.I. Joe and Bigfoot fans could take a cue from Peaches and fuck the pain away — this toy is more elusive that the initial cut of G.I. Joe: Retaliation.
2) Bigfoot the Monster
From the “where the hell was this thing when I was a kid” file comes Fisher-Price’s Imaginext Bigfoot the Monster. More a remote controlled embodiment of awesomeness than an action figure, it is hands down the most mobile toy ever based on a creature that was devised by backwoods hicks. The fun possibilities for this thing are endless, and not just scaring tots eating popcorn like in the above commercial either. If I had one of these I’d watch Mad Men with it, peel back the layers of my carefully crafted persona and let it see the true me, take it out for a vindaloo, etc.
I’d make it do flips too. Those never get tired.
1) Bionic BigfootThis may prove to be a controversial choice, as the Bionic Bigfoot is not a Bigfoot after all. I just blew your mind, didn’t I? Nope, it is in reality a hairy android made by aliens to screw with Steve Austin. In short, he is the coolest villain ever to appear on The Six Million Dollar Man…and television in general. The above video tribute to Kenner’s 15″ of love is a celebration of a far better time when robotic Sasquatches seemed like a perfectly reasonable thing to be featured in prime time. But wait, it gets better:The TTP Drag Race Dual Launch toy paired off a 3 3/4-inch Bionic BIgfoot against a same-sized Steve Austin in an exciting speed battle. And they say nothing good ever came from people being on Quaaludes. Although the toys featured in this entry are scarce, the good news is that you can track down Eye Witness’ Monster Unknown vinyl reinterpretation of Bionic Bigfoot fairly cheap, and Bif Bang Pow! is also working on a new toy based on the character. Alien or not, there’s no keeping old BB down.