I got this figure by chance in a bigger lot. I was very surprised to find that the head of the figure was not like every other TMNT figure I have, but made of soft plastic, like some Masters of the Universe, if you know what I am talking about.
Apparently, soft-head turtles were the very first toys produced. To minimice risks, Playmates decided to make a first run keeping production costs as low as possible. The line may flop, as many other toylines have, so they took this decision. Of course, when they notice the big sale numbers, and the amazing success of the toyline, there was green light to produce hard, more qualitative plastic heads for all figures that had soft plastic heads. These were all figures except April.
*April also had a first version with a different paintwork (no stripes in the trousers), which is also quite difficult and expensive to find.
|Hard Head (left) and Soft Head (right) Versions|
These are more scarce, and more expensive to buy. They also came with lower quality accesories and a poorer paintwork.
Apparently, there are some figures which are rarer than others. According to the eBay's subtlethinker's Guide To Collecting Classic TMNT, the four turtles and Shredder are more difficult to find than Splinter, Bebop and Roksteady. And among the turtles, Donatello seems to be the rarest.
The soft-head TMNT figures were packaged with a Turtles Fan Club form, so even if they are MOC, they can be identified without opening the blisterpack. Well, the head looks slightly different, so I guess an expert could even identifiy one of these even in a picture.
FACTS and FIGURES:
- Name: ROCKSTEADY (SOFT HEAD)
- Toy Line: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) (Wave 1)
- Year: 1988
- Company: Playmates (U.S.A.)
- Size of the figures: 3.75’’ or 9,75 cm