Many many years ago there was a knock-off action figure column in one of the toy magazines I'd peruse at the newsstands on a monthly basis (remember those?) Some blogs and toy sites also used to write about them as well.
I happen to love going on shopping trips, especially to swap meets and well, let's just say gray market goods marketplaces. There are several of them here in the city of Angels, Santee Alley comes to mind. It's those types of places where you find these bootleg Lego mini figures. The quality is usually all over the place, sometimes great but most of the time not.
Enter the internet.
Through Aliexpress, every day shoppers like myself can order all sorts of goods from China, quite a good portion of them are bootleg items. I recently made a foray into bootleg Lego mini-figs, and here's the first results.
I ordered all of these on September 14. They started to arrive about three weeks later, and finished arriving about 10 days after that. See you might place one order but you're aggregating a number of individual vendors into that order. This one order of how-ever many figures it is came from 6 different vendors.
I'm not sure exactly which brands these actually are, as they don't come with packaging. I believe they're at least KOPF or another major knock off brand.
|Char's Zaku-II and a grunt Zaku-II. These both come with a
bazooka and a rifle, which will come in handy later.
|Thanos was the most expensive single piece at $2.40. Came with the
Infinity Gauntlet and all the stones. LEGO doesn't even make a chromed version of the glove.
|I really like this Voltron mini-fig, though I wish it had the earlier version's lion hands.
|I would like Mazinger Z more if they had included both sides of the chest piece
|These are just fun. 80 cents for both.
|That's a Minecraft Wolf for my daughter
|I was fairly excited about He-Man and Skeletor, and they could be better, but they're not bad to begin with.
The faces are a little off.
|Jack Skellington, The 4th Doctor and Hulk Hogan.
None of these have ever been made by Lego
|RX-178 Gundam Mk II and RX-78-2 Mobile Suit Gundam.
Love these. Didn't come with guns though, thankfully the Zaku guns worked.
All told I spent about $17 on these pieces. I enjoyed the experience so much I made a larger order just a couple of weeks ago, most of which just came in, so look for Part 2 of this entry shortly.