Garbage Pail Kids + M.U.S.C.L.E. + Erasers = The Trash Pack

By Shawn Robare

Though I tend not to cover much of the modern merchandising that plays off of 80s nostalgia, from time to time I do see some stuff that I just have to share.  While walking around Toys R Us the other day looking at their new Halloween displays I stumbled upon some little toys that really caught my eye.  They’re called the Trash Pack

In a nutshell, these little guys are the equivalent of the cheap-o vending toys you tend to find at the entrances to grocery stores and as prizes in arcades.  They’re a collection of 1″ monsters, critters, spoiled food items and bugs (both micro-biotic and insectile in nature) that are a cross between a pencil topper and a charm toy.  Normally I probably would have passed these up as the available packages (containing either 5 or 12 figures) were pretty pricey ($6 for 5 and $10 for 12), but the sheer amount of 80s era influeces packed into these little guys was just too attractive…

First off, the figures are packaged in little plastic garbage cans that immediately evoke the M.U.S.C.L.E. men phenomenon, but there’s also an obvious Garbage Pail Kids vibe with the all the gross gags and collectability.  On top of that these are also riffing off of the current resurgence of figural eraser collecting that’s really gripped kids for the first time in 25 years.  If these had also come with stickers I think my mind would have melted…


All in all I have to say that even though the thought that went into the merchandising was pretty cool, the price-point is just way too out of whack.  All told there are almost 200 different figures (including color variations on around 55 different molds) and the chances of scoring a complete set for under $100 seems pretty slim.  When you consider that these are just glorified vending toys, that makes these guys pretty darn expensive.  Also, though some of the molds are pretty cool (I highlighted my favorites in the photos), there are a lot that just don’t read well (in terms of coming across as what they are.)  These are available in 2, 5, and 12 packs, and I think that if the price was reduced by half they might catch on, but I have a hard time seeing parents plunking down the kind of cash it would take to get there kids started out on a decent collection.


  • Micki – Yeah, the more time I spend with these little guys the more I’m appreciating them… Dex – Yeah, the store up by me just had a rather large restock and there were a lot of things distracting me. I didn’t see any of the Adventure Time figures (or I’d surely have picked a couple up.) I did see some new G.I. Joe’s, in particular a Steel Brigade figure that’s based on the old customizable filecard mail-away, as well as a bunch of Universal Monster stuff that I had to pick up. For the first time in awhile there’s been a lot of stuff that’s been catching my eye in stores…

  • I almost bought some of these over the weekend at Toys R Us…until I found out they finally got in some Adventure Time toys!

  • expensive…. yes. but, at least in your photos, they look absolutely gorgeous! I know, had I seen them in a store, I would have succumbed to the temptation and bought a pack. so don’t feel too guilty ;)

  • Shane Adkins

    These are killer!!!! I love seeing toys that remind me of my childhood!!! ahhh memories…they can be purchased here!!! killer!!!!