It’s the latest sensation. This generation’s Beanie Babies. Like last year’s Pokémon Go, collectors just “gotta catch ’em all.” And Funko, the toy company that makes them exclusively, has licensed seemingly any and every property on Earth for their POP! line of bobblehead dolls. Almost. Funko is always reaching for the next great franchise, the next cool character, the next thing for fanboys and fangirls to go nuts for.
Really. They’ve secured the licenses for nearly everything. Challenge us on that? How about Tupac Shakur? They made him into a vinyl POP! figure. Michael Jackson? Yep, in multiple outfits. Invisible Bilbo Baggins. The creature from Sharknado. Duck Dynasty? They made ’em. How about 1970s Elvis? Yep. Guardians of the Galaxy, Star Wars, The Muppets, and Game of Thrones? Of course. The Golden Girls? Nah…. yep! They made those, too. Piglet from Winnie the Pooh and Butters from South Park. The Elf on the Shelf? The cast of Friends? They’re just toying with us now.
But it doesn’t stop there. There’s Bob’s Big Boy and Bob’s Burgers. Parks and Recreation. BBC’s Sherlock. The cast from Lost. Universal Monsters. My Little Pony. NFL football. The Gilmore Girls. The A-Team. Pewdiepie from YouTube??? Gremlins. The Walking Dead. Power Rangers. The Exorcist. It goes on and on…
Is there no end to the properties that the Funko toy company will rematerialize into bobbleheads? They’ve got Santa Claus, Homer Simpson, David Bowie in Labyrinth, Breaking Bad, and the kids from Twilight. And the band members from Metallica. Thankfully they don’t yet have The Twilight Zone or we’d have to witness a frightening POP! of Billy Mumy’s victim Dan as the jack-in-the-box from “It’s a Good Life.” [[shudder]]
But this week’s release tops them all. Truly there is now one Funko POP! to rule them all. The real Top POP! But who could it be? Who is the big surprise? Drumroll, please…. The One POP! to Rule Them All is…
That’s right, it’s the Mr. Rogers of artists. The calm Guru of Gesso. The whispering Savant of Soothe. That’s right, complete with his paint palette and a beautiful new painting of happy little trees. Bob Ross is now a Funko POP!
And we’re serious about the gift thing. What co-worker won’t be impressed at the holidays to receive her own muse to ward off office trolls. To calm the storms. To make the whole world a happier place.
The late Robert Norman Ross was an icon. An American painter. He was the creator and host of The Joy of Painting, the television series that taught us all the basics of painting for an entire decade between 1983 and 1994 on PBS. And he wasn’t originally the sweetheart we knew him for. Ross was a U.S. Air Force master sergeant. The guy who screamed at everyone. The guy the soldiers feared. But inspired by a painter who had his own television show, Ross retired after 20 years to study painting, vowing not to scream again. And his legacy is one of sharing and happiness. As Ross once said, “I got a letter from somebody here a while back, and they said, ‘Bob, everything in your world seems to be happy.’ That’s for sure. That’s why I paint. It’s because I can create the kind of world that I want, and I can make this world as happy as I want it. Shoot, if you want bad stuff, watch the news.”
So get one for yourself and your best friend. You can pre-order your own Bob Ross Funko POP! now from Entertainment Earth here.