Okay, technically, I found “Kraang,” not “Krang.” But still.
I got some e-mails asking if I was gonna cover the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles figures, spun from the fast approaching Nickelodeon show. Well, of course. But it wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t start with Krang.
Kraang was a bitch to find. Actually, my local Toys “R” Us has barely had any of the new TMNT stuff in for weeks now. A couple of Splinters (eternally doomed to be the last one kids go for, no matter the generation), and if I was lucky, a Raph or two. It wasn’t until my pal Jason gave me the tip to “check Target” this afternoon that I finally found one.
And Krang/Kraang was worth the wait.
I spew hyperbole like the worst writer in the world, but if there’s one thing I could never exaggerate, it’s my love of Krang. That was the character that got me hooked on all things Ninja Turtles. To this day, pound for pound and all things considered, I honestly couldn’t name another character, from any walk of entertainment, that I appreciate more. From aesthetics to persona, Krang inspires and delights me like a beautiful disembodied muse.
Of course, this figure isn’t based on that same Krang. It represents just one member of the “Kraang” species — aliens allied with Shredder in the new cartoon, who travel around in “Kraang-droid exo skeletons.” In schematics, they’re more like the Utroms than the scourge of Dimension X, but at least these guys look like the real Krang. Same bulbous, pink, tentacled brain. Weird eyes. We can pretend.
If you forgive the fact that it’s nearly impossible for the figure to stand, it’s pretty great. The robot portion even has pink highlights to match its host. Then there’s the giant guns, which seem excessive until you realize that they’re the only things keeping Kraang balanced.
No, really. I know I function at a level that would only be impressive if I was a monkey, but Kraang just flat out doesn’t stand well. If you have one and disagree, then my Kraang was misproduced. If so, I want my money back, plus $10 for pain and suffering and a pack of Starbust.
The key factor? Kraang is removable. He’s squishy and hollow and sort of like a cheap vending machine toy, but brother, he’d be the best cheap vending machine toy ever.
I especially love how the tentacles are forever stuck in those wild, erratic directions, making the Kraangs look like really busy bartenders. Or like they’re in the middle of ranting about bad sports calls. Dancing under protest?
I’m not going to let the Turtles steal Krang’s glory for the zillionth time, but since I’m here, I may as well confirm that their new figures are awesome. Probably the best I’ve seen, if we’re discounting the too-expensive collectors’-only releases that weren’t mass-produced by the bazillions.
Back to Krang/Kraang. He’s cool. I like him. But I hope a plush version is forthcoming.