The Supreme Slippery Ninja Neptune
Released in 1992
In every team of superheroes, there is always one guy that is considered the outsider. From Wolverine to Batman, they’re usually tough and standoffish with a giant heart under the surface. When it comes to the Turtles, they’ve got Merdude, the lost king of Atlantis. Now outside of his figure, I have never seen this character within the TMNT media. I know that he was in a single episode of the ’87 series and he has made a few appearances in the Archie TMNT Adventure comics, but other than what I have read about him online, I’m sorry to say that I don’t know much about him. Fortunately, I can tell you that while his action figure is a bit limited in practical design, it is ambitious in the fact that he’s basically a merman in toy form.
This blue drink of water is covered head to flipper in gills and armor seeing as how he is the lost warrior king of Atlantis who has allied himself with the Turtles when the Shredder tried to drain the Earth’s oceans (as you do).
Thanks to Merdude’s sculpt, you could be forgiven if you though that this guy was a villain thanks to his gritted teeth, eyepatch and deadly looking trident ( a realistic-looking rarity amongst the good guys in the line). While he is mostly a pale blue in color, he comes equipped with striking blue armor that covers his chest and most of his arms. The cool part is, is that he seems to be wearing a diving suit that covers everything from the chest plate to his caudal fin, which is spread wide in order to allow for easy display. Think of it as a cross between overalls and a wet suit. The diving suit is also painted in a nice vibrant red that breaks up all the different shades of blue nicely.
One thing that is kind of mystifying is the fact that Merdude is wearing a pair of knee pads where his legs have a natural bend to them. I guess an argument could be made that this is part of his royal battle armor, but it just looks out of place and a little dopey, even for this line of figures. But it’s easy to ignore when you look at the figure as a whole. Even though this guy may look a little limited in design, he still sports the standard seven points of articulation, a dynamic head sculpt, and it really shows how creative Playmates could get by limiting their color palate to basically two different shades of blues, some red and very little black. If nothing else, Merdude is a great example of identity through limitations.
Turtle Trivia: In the Archie TMNT comics, Merdude is credited as being the first mutant as a boy (Alim) was mutated into a massive coelacanth fish 5,000 years ago.