I was a Street Fighter II loyalist as a kid. No other arcade fighting game could possibly interest me until one day I watched a kid playing a game in an arcade that was called Mortal Kombat. It looked much gorier than Street Fighter II and it seemed to play a lot faster as well, with the fights appearing to be over much more quickly. After the kid had finished, I went and put 20p in the machine, full of bravado that my Street Fighting expertise was gonna pay off here. I was wrong. I can’t remember exactly how far I got, but I remember getting my ass royally handed to me by Scorpion, a yellow garbed Ninja. After he had worn my health down, he quickly peeled off his mask revealing a grinning skull, then hunched forward and breathed a stream of fire at me, incinerating my character to just charred bones.
As defeats go, I just couldn’t be annoyed at that. I had never had my life ended in any video game that was even half as impressive as that before. I walked away from that arcade machine just stunned. Scorpion was my new favourite thing. A fire breathing, skeleton ninja. Could anything sound as awesome?
I didn’t play Mortal Kombat again until a couple of years later when I went to my friend’s house and I was properly introduced to the rest of the characters. Aside from Scorpion, I also liked Sub-Zero, another ninja who was a blue pallet swap of Scorpion. His attacks were all ice based, and I actually managed to beat my friend a few times with him, which was pretty hard to do back then.
Although Mortal Kombat hasn’t ever been my go-to series when I’m just wanting to beat the shit out of someone, it’s still one I do really enjoy playing from time to time although I haven’t really touched any of the more recent entries (mainly because I’m a cheapskate and haven’t managed to find any at a price I was willing to pay). Although I had never played the game, I still couldn’t resist picking up some Funko Savage World figures based on characters from Mortal Kombat X.
The neat thing about Funko ‘Savage World’ figures is that they are supposed to be in a retro style. Funko nailed the market with their ReAction figure line, which was of the same scale as vintage Star Wars figures (I recently looked at some Firefly figures on here), but this new line is supposed to be like the He-man and the Masters of the Universe line, chunky, stocky, about five inches tall and in that strange half squat position that all of the MOTU figures seem to be in.
Scorpion comes equipped with two swords which I don’t ever remember him using in the older games, though that’s not to say he didn’t. Although he feels like a MOTU figure in your hands, his sculpt does look a lot more detailed than any of the other MOTU figures that I owned as a kid. It’s a silly criticism, but I think I would have liked a little less of a detailed sculpt just to go for that retro-aesthetic, and would have liked his swords to be all one colour moulded plastic, like how MOTU accessories looked.
Scorpion features five points of articulation like the old MOTU figures, but his legs don’t move at all like those older figures as they’re fixed firmly into pegs and not elasticated. Which is fine, I know a lot of people have issues nowadays with the elastic needing to be replaced due to wearing over the past thirty years, so I can see why Funko would go for this option.
The paintwork on Scorpion figures is great. It’s not overly detailed but it’s detailed enough. I guess Funko are wanting to sell figures to fans of Mortal Kombat who might not be into retro action figures, but they’re also wanting to get fans of retro figures to buy these too, so I think that they do a good job in trying to satisfy both target markets.
Scale-wise, he looks spot on with vintage MOTU figures, which would make for some interesting partnerships/feuds. Can you imagine how rad it would be for He-man to pull off Goro’s arms, or for Scorpion to blast off Beastman’s fur? It’s such a weird idea, but it’s the kinda shit that would go down when I was playing with my MOTU figures.
Here Scorpion has made an uneasy alliance with He-man, as Shao Kahn wants to invade Eternia which He-man obviously doesn’t want and Scorpion wants revenge on Hordak for taking his car parking space, so exciting battles are going to ensue.
Anyway, here’s Sub-Zero.
Sub-Zero comes equipped with an ice sword and an ice hammer, both of which are of that amazing, clear blue colour that reminds me of mouthwash and ’90s mail away Obi-wan’s ghost action figures. He feels just as chunky as Scorpion and also has five points of articulation like him. I really dig that he has a whole bunch of throwing knives sticking out of his outfit. I gather that Funko are probably just following the design of the in-game model, but it’s still neat. I always appreciated figures that had weapons and accessories that were attached to them as part of their sculpt as I was constantly losing their weapons so it felt a teeny bit like they were less incomplete when they had something attached that I just couldn’t lose!
Like Scorpion, Sub-Zero fits in really well with the scale of MOTU figures. I couldn’t think of a reason why he’s teamed up with Trap Jaw other than the fact that Trap Jaw is one of my favourite looking MOTU villains, and I wanted them stood next to each other. Perhaps it’s just because Sub-Zero has a rivalry with Scorpion, and Trap Jaw thinks that He-man is a dick because he bent his robot gun arm once.
Overall, I really like these Savage World Funko figures. I’m really looking forward to seeing where the line ends up going, as there are some pretty cool designs out already for a Thundercats series, a Conan the Barbarian series, and my personal favourite- a Horror series with classic slasher villains like Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger being redesigned as fantasy villains.
The figures I looked at today really do have that ’80s kind of feel to them, almost as if they carried on making ’80s style action figures into the ’90s where the paint application would have been a little better and the sculpting would have improved. The best thing about these Funko figures is that they were very cheap (for a modern action figure), so if you have an appreciation for simple, fun looking action figures based on characters that debuted in arcades in the ’90s, you could do a helluva lot worse than this pair of ninja-y bastards.