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Ramon the SWAT Officer

Mighty World
by yo go re

Sometimes, as a toy fan, you have to take a chance on something new, something you've never heard of. Something like Skeleflex, Shockinis or even the much-beloved Xevoz. Or, today, Mighty World.

After serving in the Mighty Town Police Department for a couple of years, Ramon volunteered to undergo months of rigorous tactical and intense physical training to become a full fledged SWAT officer. He is now part of a highly skilled and well-equipped unit keeping Mighty Town safe.

You know, for what is quite obviously meant to be a children's toy - the packaging lists it as safe for ages 4 and up - that's a surprisingly accurate bio. Is a preschooler even going to know what a SWAT Officer is? No, of course not; they're barely up to "policemen wear blue," so anything beyond that in the police specialization hierarchy is a bit beyond their years. And yet that description of how a bill becomes a law a duty officer would become a SWAT team member is right on the money.

Mighty World is the type of toyline you normally only find in small boutique shops and other "educational" toy outlets - in other words, not the kind of thing you find next to the Bakugan at Toys Я Us. Except that Target has recently started carrying the line, introducing the figures to a much, much wider audience. There are sets at various price points, from large vehicles and multipacks all the way down to individual figures packed by themselves.

Ramon the SWAT Officer is part of the Emergency portion of the line - Mighty World is divided into Town Life, Construction, Armed Forces, Adventure and Emergency groups, with several different offerings in each. Emergency includes firefighters, EMTs, HazMat crews, river search and rescue, and of course, the police. Ramon may be the only SWAT-certified member on the force, but he's backed up by a K9 unit, several mounted officers, a highway patrol and more.

The figure stands 2⅞" tall, and moves at the neck, shoulders, wrists and hips. All the joints are plain swivels, but that's still an impressive amount for a toy aimed at youngsters - most companies wouldn't have bothered with wrists, so there's no way we're going to mark this one down for not having balljoints.

We get a remarkably detailed sculpt, as well. Remember, this line seems to fall on the same end of the spectrum as Fisher Price Little People and Playmobil sets, and yet Ramon is wearing a layered uniform with carefully sculpted wrinkles, detailed pads and armor, and fully 3D elements like pouches and a radio! A kids' toy company that doesn't shy away from reality? Unexpected and impressive. Remember when Plan B's Emergency Forces toys were pretty much banned from stores for being "too violent?" This is for 4-year-olds and it has two holstered guns sculpted on it!

The packaging advises us that the set includes "over 4 pieces!" And it does. It contains five. Okay, maybe six. But why phrase it that way? "Over 4 pieces!" is just an odd number to boast about. The accessories include a pair of handcuffs, a flashlight, and a tan and black rifle. The rifle is very nice, and detailed realistically, but the hands are way too small to hold it. All you can do is have him hold the gun by the top, not aim it.

Ramon is packaged wearing a ballcap and sunglasses, but that can be removed as a single piece, revealing his bald head and a large notch in the top. You can then plug in either a full head of hair ("with hair accessory!", as the packaging says), or an armored helmet. Part of the peg that holds the hat in place is missing - I don't know if that's a molding error or what, but it doesn't keep the plug from working.

I don't forsee buying a whole lot of Mighty World toys - some of the larger sets have pretty impressive selections of accessories, and there are a few other single-packs that look enticing, but I'm already addicted to enough different toylines already. Ramon will be fine any time I need someone to boss around my Minimates, Kubricks, PALz... well, you get the idea. The toy is really well-made, and the line looks to be a lot of fun. Mighty World may not be as revolutionary as Xevoz or as unexpected as Skeleflex, but there's definite value here, so why not give it a shot?

-- 09/06/09


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