Upon this edifice shall an action figure deemed unworthy to live be burned until dead. Thus was the will of the public. Thus spake the voice of the people. So shall it be done.
The tools of the trade. People say execution costs the state too much, but I’m doing all of this for the low, low cost of $1.39.
Since when did matches start coming in green? Anyway, I’ll be saving the plastic wrap and the cardboard strip insert that keeps the matches in place. I will be using those later.
Ain’t she purty?
The fire chamber. I used the cardboard insert to create a chimney of sorts, and I stuffed the plastic wrapper in there to get some quick release heat to get things moving. I’m hoping the cardboard will last long enough to funnel some heat on that secondary subplatform. I want this to burn nice and hot.
Matches with heads on them don’t lay flat, and therefore make lousy support beams. I glued a bunch of the match heads I had to break off to the front of the fire chamber. This will provide heat, yes, but mainly will just look cool when I light this bad boy up. I glued in an irregular, malformed match as a “fuse.”
Note the secondary platform directly above the fire chamber. This is not structural. It is there specifically to provide extra heat during burning. I don’t want any survivors.
This execution sponsored in part by OfficeMax™. OfficeMax™, for all of your action figure execution needs.
And here stand the accused. Each one guilty of the crime of being a sucky toy. Each one deserving the fate of flames. One of these action figures will be burned at the stake. The rest shall live to suck another day. Who shall live and who shall die? THE CHOICE IS YOURS!
From left to right: Spider-Man 3 Sandman kids meal “prize,” cheap ass Dollar General wrestler, skeleton guy who’s legs don’t bend and whom can only sit down (seated), naked Spawn Angela with wings I made out of matches, some little kid with no moving parts, SnowBoCop: the RoboCop toy inexplicably made of white plastic who is missing an arm, the new version of He-Man, a knight moulded in dark green with orange highlights and no moving parts so he’s extra historically accurate, some blue robot guy with a ghost face, Casey Jones from the CGI TMNT movie, and Robin covered in circuitry who is missing his left thumb.
Ok, let’s count the ballots:
And the people have spoken! Tad Seisseisseis must burn!
“Robin here. I just want to thank everybody for voting for Tad Seisseisseis. You see, the last time my life was put up to a vote, things didn’t turn out so well for me…”
“Back in 1988 I was not so popular. In fact, I was kind of a douche. People hated me. I was cocky and stupid, and against Batman’s orders I tried to take on the Joker by myself. The Joker beat my ass to a pulp with a crowbar and locked me in a warehouse with a bomb. Some people wanted me to get out, but a lot of others wanted to see me die.”
“So the folks at DC Comics decided to put it to a vote. Call the 660 line and I live. Call the 666 line and I die. As Jesus Christ and Andy Kaufman could tell you, trials of public opinion rarely go well for unpopular people. By a slim margin of about 65 votes, the public decided that I would die.”
“Long story short, the bomb went off before I could get out. I died before Batman could get to me, causing him to blame himself and slip even farther toward the dark, brooding character everyone loves so much today. And the world got one of the most iconic comic book covers ever drawn. Everybody won. Except me. I got blown the fuck up. So I’m pretty damned happy not to have to go through that again. Thank you. Thank you all. Robin out!”
TAD SEISSEISSEIS: Hey, uh, yo dere, peoples of the public, my name is Tad Johns… I mean, Tad Seisseisseis, and I’d just like to confront summa da tings peoples is sayin’ about me. First of all, I do not think it’s fair to say I look like a retardeder version of Sly Stallone. It is more accuratacious to say I look like a retardeder version of Frank Stallone, who is himself a retardeder, more apelike version of Sly Stallone. Also, these is not my pants. I would never wear these gold boots and white pants. Not at the same time. What am I, a homo? I used to have black pants and black boots, but the executioner took ’em. Gimme back my pants, bro! Also, this bald chick with the wings used to have great tits, but she got her armored bra taken off and now she’s like an A-cup with holes for nipples. She was paddin’, yo. She’s still got a kickin’ bod, and I would totally bang her, though, but I just wanna be clear that the tit thing is not my fault. Ok, dat’s it. Amen, and God bless America.
ANGELA: God, I can’t wait to watch you burn.
And here we have our Masters Of Ceremonies, Captain Bartholomew Matchstick Morgan, pyrate arsonist of the high seas, El Verdugo, luchador execútionadór de los muertes, and Quark from Deep Space Nine, who will be taking gate money and selling marshmallows for roasting.
Originally Bartholomew Matchstick Morgan and El Verdugo were going to be burn candidates. Matchstick is missing a hand, has no bendable elbows, and he’s one piece from the waist down. As an action figure, he’s pretty short on action. But then I noticed that a match fit in the hole where his hand used to be, and there are two weird plastic tabs on his back that hold a match perfectly. So he was saved. El Verdugo used to have white pants and gold boots, but I switched legs with Tad Seisseisseis and took a Sharpie to his tighty whiteys, and BAM, instant executioner.
Later that day, in a shady part of town…
EL VERDUGO: $5000, payaso. This is El Verdugo’s fee. El Verdugo will accept no less!
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: Done. You’ll have it within the hour. Just make sure El Verdugo ties the kid nice and tight. He’s tougher than he looks. And I want no escapes. Not this time.
EL VERDUGO: El Verdugo will not fail you, señor!
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: I understand that OCP wants to charge you $30,000 for the procedure. I don’t know too many cops that have that kind of cash lying around. And that’s gotta be a big chunk of your pension.
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: You know, if you could find a way to ignore those pesky little police directives you’re programmed with, I could do it for, say… fifteen. But, here’s the rub. I need $5000 up front. Cash.
SNOWBOCOP: Deactivating ethical subroutine. Analyzing. Offer… accepted.
QUARK: Come on! I’m just a simple bartender. I couldn’t possibly do that.
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: You’re a Ferengi. You’re a greedy little worm who cares about nothing but profit. You certainly could do it. And I have $5000 cash that says you WILL do it.
QUARK: And you’re sure the cop will look the other way?
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: Robo Po-Po is all taken care of. Just make sure you deliver the package as instructed. Oh, and one more thing. You’re gonna need a knife for this job. And I’m going to trade you my sharpest knife for a bottle of your worst rum.
QUARK: A bottle of rum?
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: Yo, ho, ho.
ROBIN: Hey, Quark, did you hear? They’re gonna burn that wrestler guy and not me! I survived this vote!
QUARK: That’s great, kid. Now if you could just hold still for JUST a sec…
ROBIN: Umm… what are you doing with that knife?
QUARK: Business, kiddo. Nothin’ personal.
ROBIN: Wait! Wait! NO! AAHHHHHHHH!
QUARK: Ok, here you go. That’s one Robin arm and one bottle of rum. Mind if I ask why you would want…
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: Walk away, ears. I feel… funny. And you don’t want me to show you the true meaning of the word “punchline.”
QUARK: Uh, yeah, well, it was great doing business with you, keep in touch, talk to you soon and all that jazz, Quark to DS9, one to beam out repeat ONE TO BEAM OUT!
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: Well, officer, nice to see that you’re once again fully armed. He he hehehe HA HA HA HAHAHAHA!
SNOWBOCOP: Analyzing… pun based humor acknowledged. Take the balance of the money you are owed. Transaction complete.
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: No, we’re not quite done yet. I’m going to need you to deliver $5000 of that to our good friend El Verdugo. I’ll take the rest. Nice working with you, officer.
ROBIN: Wait! What the hell are you doing?! For the love of God, I won the vote this time! You can’t do this! Quark cut off my arm! He cut off my goddamn arm!! SnoBoCop’s wearing it! Look at him! This is so fucked up!
EL VERDUGO: El Verdugo is sorry, little man. Truly he is. But El Verdugo’s fee for your execution has been payed. And once he is paid, El Verdugo always sees his job through!
ROBIN: Come on! Let’s at least ask the people what they want! Come on, guys! Tell him you want me to go free!
THE MOB: Burn him!!
MATCHSTICK MORGAN: Wait! Hold yer thunder! Somethin’s amiss! I be a pyrate. And if there’s one thing a pyrate be good at besides ARRson, it’s ARRithmetic. And somethin’s nae a addin’ up. I’ll make an accounting of the doubloons ye’ve swapped, mysterious off-camera voice. The metal man paid ye $15,000 fer a new ARRm. Ye gave $5000 each to the ugly barkeep and the hangman. Then ye gave to meself the last $5000 to let you be the fire master at this here burnin.’ That’d be leavin’ ye nothin’ but the wind in yer lungs. So where’s yer share, mate? What’s your angle? Where be yer cut o’ the gold?
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: This was never about the money, Captain. Besides, you’re forgetting our barter.
MATCHSTICK MORGAN: By the powers, yer right! Ye traded the barkeep a fine knife for a bottle of bad rum. Then ye traded me the rum for one o’ me matches. So you bartered yer way from $15,000 and a decent blade down to a single lucifer and no money a t’all. A poor piece o’ trade was that!
CREEPY OFF-CAMERA VOICE: You’re thinking too logically, Captain. You see, some men aren’t looking for anything logical. Some men… step aside, people! As I was saying, Captain, some men…
JOKER: …just want to watch the world burn!
ROBIN: HOLY MOTHERFUCKIN’ SHIT!! JOKER!!
JOKER: Aww, you remember! I can’t help but be touched. You’re not getting away this time, Boy Wonder.
ROBIN: NO!! I won the vote this time! I’m supposed to go free!
JOKER: Robin, Robin, Robin…
JOKER: …WHY SO SERIOUS?!
The accused standing here before us have been found guilty of the crime of being sucky action figures, and have been condemned to burn until melted or consumed by fire. May God have mercy on your souls. Proceed.
The fuse is lit.
ROBIN: Dude, tell me you are not gonna do this! This is so fucked up!!
TAD SEISSEISSEIS: Gimme back my pants, Verdugo! I wanna die in MY OWN DAMN PANTS!!
When the little cluster of match heads at the base of the fire chamber went up, it REALLY went up. It had just finished raining, and everything was very damp. I did not expect this thing to catch fire as quickly as it did.
Interesting science fact: glue stick glue will reabsorb moisture from the atmosphere. When I built this thing in the dry air at work, it was solid as a rock. But just lifting it after the rain caused it to warp. The glue was getting squishy because of all the moisture in the air. Very disappointing. Next time – yeah, that’s right, next time – I will use liquid white school glue. I think that’ll give me a more solid hold.
MICHAEL KNIGHT: Dude, these people are crazy. They’re burning shitty toys and complaining about glue sticks. We’d better skate. Let’s face it: as action figures go, we fuckin’ BLOW. I don’t wanna end up on a fire ’cause you look like an underdone gator platter with Down’s syndrome.
WHIPLASH: True, true. Hey, nice outfit, by the way. It must be hard for a man with no bendable elbows to pull his pants halfway up to his nipples, but I’m proud that you managed. But now that I think about it, what action hero DOESN’T wear a turtleneck tucked into his jeans? Too bad you look nothing like David Hasselhoff.
MICHAEL KNIGHT: Who the fuck is David Hasselhoff?
ROBIN: I swear to God I will have my revenge!!
TAD SEISSEISSEIS: My pants! My pants are burning! Gimme back my pants, bro!
Yeah, so the pencils I used as a gallows pole weren’t stuck in the ground. They were glued to the platform by a series of hastily constructed, poorly designed, lazily engineered struts and braces which were flimsy to begin with, and made even weaker by the moisture that was slowly melting the glue that held them together. So it was no great surprise when the pole toppled, taking the action figures to the pavement.
Last time – yeah, this is not my first fiery execution – I stuck the pencils in the ground and they held like a charm. All that remained was an upright graphite rod when the wood burned away, a bleak, mute WWI-esque testament to the cold indifference of death. Or something like that. Whatever, I set a Superman figure on fire. It ain’t fuckin’ poetry, Shakespeare.
Robin was getting his burn on real good at this point, and I was enjoying the surprise appearance of that deep, liquid, slow burning orange flame, the kind you get with a good oil fire. Unfortunately, I was also getting a billowing cloud of black smoke.
The volume of smoke was quite frankly astonishing. I was burning two action figures, but it looked like I was burning a fucking tire. The smoke filled up the alley between my house and my neighbor’s and literally obscured my vision of my street. My neighbors across the street are old and nearly deaf, and even when they’re conversing normally I can hear them. When the old man said “Is that smoke?,” I knew it was time to call it quits. I had no interest in explaining to the cops or fire department that I was illegally burning an action figure on my back stoop because the people on Facebook told me to. As much as it pained me, I had to extinguish the Boy Wonder.
FIREMAN MIKE: Ok, we recepted a call from a certain particular individual about a, uh, suspicional cloud of Type 6/Class 14-A airborne smoke type substance. Ok, this particular individual described a smell like ass and burning rubber. We, uh, invested the scene of the particular incident, ok, and it was determinated that we would extinguish this particular fire with a traditional extinguinational tool…
FIREMAN MIKE: …this big ass bucket of water.
Post water bucket, all that remains are graphite rods, match corpses and two shitty action figures which are now melted into one hunk of crap. The cement was wet from rain, otherwise I think there would have been a lot more melting. Last time I did this the pavement got hot enough to sizzle when I poured water on it. It was so cold and wet this time that, even after I laid down the flame, it was still a little damp. It was like your mom in that way.
I think that mom joke works, but I don’t know. I’m really sleepy. Whatever, man. Just whatever.
When I flipped these guys over I was HUGELY disappointed that Robin wasn’t more damaged. From the back he’s absolutely charred, but the moisture on the pavement seems to have spared his front. Fuckin’ weather. Tad, on the other hand, melted nicely. I dig the glittery sand and pebbles he picked up, and I love the way you can still see the gold of his boots. What I don’t understand is that a chunk of gold plastic somehow ended up by his midsection. Also, how is his face so well preserved? His head was buried in burning matches. His torso is melted flat, but somehow his face is still somewhat intact. After I watched his head burn! Fire, you are an enigma.
In this pic, it totally looks like these guys are just leaning together. In real life, it looks even more like that. They in no way look like one piece. I was surprised they stayed together when I picked them up. I wiggled and flapped them around in the air, hard, like your mom’s tits at Mardi Gras, but they stayed together, like your mom’s legs never. So I did the only logical thing a 36 year old man can do with toys he just burned. I petulantly threw them at a cinder block wall while yelling, “Break, asshole!” They didn’t break. These fuckers are fused solid.
I’m very disappointed that Robin didn’t end up more horribly burned, but at the end of the day, I did take a bunch of matches and two crappy action figures and turn them into a melted nightmare conglomeration. And, I have to admit, it was a lot of fun.
Will I ever finish Robin-Tad off with a complete and thorough burning? Probably. But for right now, I’m going to sit back and enjoy the extra creepy way Robin seems enjoy being fused with Tad Seisseisseis. Did the Joker finally crack him? Can’t say for sure, but… yeah. Looks like.
By the way, is it just me or does melted Tad kinda look like modern, fat ass Steven Seagal? I’m just sayin’.
Seriously. I’m just sayin’.