Like most things from the 1980s, Jem and the Holograms have enjoyed a comeback with reruns on The Hub, a complete series DVD set, and premium-quality doll re-dos from Integrity Toys. Now, their OTHER rivals from the 1980s, the Stingers, finally get toys of their own!
Consisting of Riot, Minx and Rapture, the Stingers were introduced in the third season of “Jem” as another band that could oppose the Holograms. Led by the long-trussed egomaniac Riot, they signed with the Misfits’ Eric Raymond, causing no end of trouble as Riot fell for Jem, while being coveted by the Misfits’ Pizazz. There was also some story where he turned out to have alienated his father by being a musician instead of the army, but with hair like that, Dad should have known better.
The Stingers fell victim to the “Fallacy of the Extra Bad Guys” trend of most 1980s toy/cartoon lines, where more bad guys were introduced to create more stories, but mostly served to distract from existing characters. Remember the Quintessons on “The Transformers”? The Lunataks on “Thundercats”? Serpentor battling Cobra Commander, and later the H.P. Lovecraft-inspired Cobra-La crew? And while we got nothing but love for the Evil Horde and Snake Men in “Masters of the Universe,” it got a bit distracting when we just wanted to see He-Man fight Skeletor (the cartoons avoided this by pitting Hordak against She-Ra).
There actually WERE plans for dolls of the Stingers to be produced in the 1988 line of Jem toys, but they never came to pass. You can see some pics of them here, though warning: The Riot doll is not something you can easily unsee. It’s like Ozzy Osbourne at his lowest point.
The dolls will be made available in Sept. 2013, and retail for $119 apiece.
We’re still waiting for 1) a full-on revival of “Jem” as a cartoon or movie, one for the “Glee” generation where our Stormer/Kimber fanfic can finally be realized (TMI?) and 2) a figure of Eric Raymond, who was pretty much the most successful villain of all 1980s cartoons. Seriously, watch the series. In 65 episodes, he commits multiple acts of attempted murder, arson, blackmail and we’re fairly certain light treason, and his only comeuppance is that he’s manager of the SECOND-most-successful rock band in the world.
Megatron and Cobra Commander could take lessons from this guy.
You can check out pics of the Stingers on IntegrityToys.com, or on their Facebook page.