If you missed the original Boglins article, click here!
The last gasp of the Boglins under Mattel was in the 2000s, after which the brand petered out. They seemed to be forgotten by all except a few enthusiasts, doomed to obscurity, when in 2017, they very suddenly came back. Under a new company but the original artists, they picked up right where the old Boglins left off, with a puppet the same size and style as the originals.
Glork, the “evolved Boglin” isn’t super interesting on its own, but it’s a good baseline for the new toys. In the quality of the sculpt, Glork is clearly better of than his ancestors. The wrinkled mummy texture of the arms is really cool, and the paint job is pretty gorgeous, that pale lichen-green look that makes him look almost metallic or stony. If you were a fan of the original boglins, I could totally see this really appealing to you… so long as you’re willing to put up with a pretty steep price tag.
I also personally like the addition of plates down his back. It adds to the tough, gargoyle like look of this one.
Apparently, Glork was a success, because there’s been a huge comeback for the Boglins, all available at Tim Clarke’s own website. Some of the classics returned, but we’re not interested in reruns. What we want is the new stuff. What strange new anatomical adaptations have been discovered in this bizarre taxa? Could, perhaps, the aquatic Boglins… take to the sky?
Aw yeah. Bats are great, and their anatomy melds well with that of a Boglin. The bat boglin’s body is shaped like a manta ray, and I could totally see these guys taking off from their swampy water homes. It’s a clever way to make the shape still work. I also love its face, with those blue-accented wrinkles and the very bat-like grin. A great little bat!
Vlogg also comes in white, which I don’t think is quite as nice due to a lack of detail, but it’s certainly a striking choice for a bat monster!
Before we look at some more strange goblin variants, let’s tackle some of the new mini-goblins! First up is a new pumpkin Boglin! I didn’t cover the original because it was really just a new paint job on another Boglin, but Blobkin is interesting! I love the weird, angular features all over, making it really look like a jack o’ lantern. It’s even got a stem!
The Boglin King isn’t very anatomically interesting, but I like that he comes with some props. A Boglin can’t sit in a throne, so he’s just got some pillows.
This Boglin doesn’t represent a different adaptation but rather an unfortunate Boglin who has gone undead. Or perhaps fortunate, maybe Boglins are into that. Nerble is quite horrific, made significantly nastier than your average zombie partially by the rougher sculpt. It looks like one of the gruesome claymation creatures of Lee Hardcastle.
Even smaller and rougher than the zombies, the parasites are apparently internal or external parasites of the boglins themselves. They come with the “Amazon” boglins, who we’re not talking about cause maybe they’re a touch too 80s, but also come in their own packs. They have a few different molds, and all of them are pretty cute! The bottom left white one and top right gold one are the same sculpt, letting us get good details on them. Big, buggy eyes and a massive cartoon leech mouth! Lovely.
I think the most interesting ones are the top middle one and the bottom right. Both have tusks, but differently placed. The top middle one’s “beak” is interesting, potentially some sort of mosquito-style proboscis. The bottom right one on the other hand is a little more anatomically simple, but I like its dish-like face and distant joy.
We got another fully aquatic boglin! Similar in build to Snish the fish, Snogg’s pretty similar, but for his anglerfish-style lure. He comes in a few colors, but I like this swampy green the most. Really looks like a froggy critter that would hide in murky water and eat whatever came close. Apparently he eats mini-boglins, which is a little disconcerting. I thought they were all friends, I don’t think I wanted to know that boglins preyed upon their smaller cousins.
We’re finishing our article with an example of one of my favorite monster archetypes; a cyclops! Eyezod looks best in black, with his rubbery wrinkles looking almost like tar and his green glow in the dark eye the only light part of his body. He’s not actually very complex at all, but it’s really cool to have a cycloptic boglin, and of course as a boglin, he’s a puppet. His eye is mobile, moving side to side when manipulated, and it even lights up on some of his other paint jobs. What a delightful goofball!
These boglins are all still being produced, so will we see even more new designs in the future? It’s impossible to know at this point, but the future looks surprisingly good. Perhaps Boglins will become one of those perennial series like Transformers, always pumping out new iterations and bizarre new ideas. I look forward to finding out.