I think that 1933’s King Kong produced one of the most iconic scenes in film history, namely that of the beast holding Fay Wray aloft while he was perched atop the Empire State Building. It was an image that must’ve been immediately recognizable to almost everyone, as even Walt Disney parodied it the year it came out, having a similar scene using Minnie Mouse take place in The Pet Store short. And Disney’s recreation of that scene is absolutely appropriate as we’re going to be examining Vincent Scala‘s Mickey Monster (2017) vinyl designer toy today.

My Impressions of Mickey Monster

Now you might be familiar with this design already, even if you’ve never seen this sculptural rendition. That’s because Mickey Monster is quite possibly Scala’s most recognizable illustration, having originally debuted as part of 2013’s I Love New Dork group exhibition at Brooklyn’s Bunnycutlet Gallery. And in the years since, Scala has created various silkscreens of the drawing to satisfy the continued demand. So it wasn’t really surprising when, at the end of last year, he took to Kickstarter to finance this vinyl figure’s production.
Obviously a parody of Mickey Mouse, this is an immediately iconic image in its own right. Yes, it draws upon that classic King Kong scene, placing a distraught Minnie in the beast’s paw, but it is how this twisted, nine-eyed, sharp-toothed, and horned version of Disney’s character retains a vintage feel that truly allows this piece to work.
But as impressive and memorable as the design is, the factory’s quality control and production value was definitely subpar. On the obvious side, it’s impossible not to be distracted by the heavy seam lines around the base of the head and left leg. And the paint application is sloppy, especially on Minnie. Heck, her poor tail isn’t even decorated.
But there are more subtle shortcomings that actually bother me more, such as the fact that both Mickey Monster and the damsel in distress have sculpted tongues but no paint applications inside their mouths. And I’m not a fan of how the right hand’s thumb is flattened, allowing it to sit closer to the body when lowered, as it looks odd when the arm is raised. In a weird way, I’m willing to forgive these imperfections as they actually add to the vintage feel, making it seem more like a piece made in the 1950s.

Editions of Mickey Monster [show]

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