Random Collection #26

Throughout the years of being a Ninja Turtle fan, my collection has been growing.  Every year I get something new that joins the collection.  Growing since 1989, I have over 500 Ninja Turtle toys out of package and over 300 in package, as well as books, animation cels, original comic art, scripts and so much more.  To cover all of this on Cowabunga Corner is not something I really think I can do.  Though I get a lot of questions about my collection, so I figured I could do random stories from time to time to share one item in my collection.  This one is about my very first April O’Neil Action Figure.


I got my original April O’Neil toy on December 25th, 1989 as I got most of the TMNT toys that were out that year.  Only needing to pick up Baxter Stockman and the Rat King after the Holiday was over.  Mom expressed that April was one of the hardest toys to find, so I was excited that I got her.  With the Turtle lair and the Turtle van it was a great Christmas and my first Holiday with TMNT in my life.  This April toy spent most of her early days in my collection with all the other action figures, if they were laying around upstairs, in a backpack or out in the backyard.  The history of this toy went away from the others in Fall 1990 when I was in my 6th grade at Harding School.


There was a boy in 3rd grade that would hang out around me, as I would really hang out with the younger kids who liked TMNT more than the people my age.  I never liked anything like New Kids on the Block or 90210.  So the younger kids who still enjoyed toys and cartoons, were people I could relate too.  One boy expressed great interest in April O’Neil, and we made a game of it.  I would bring different TMNT items to school and at lunch time the game was to try and get April O’Neil.  There would be a team on my side as we would run around the schoolyard trying to avoid the others.  I would carry something of April on me, that they were to try and get from me.  For a little bit, it became my April O’Neil figure.  The main target in the game.


In the schoolyard there was one safe spot for me to go if I needed a break.  It was this big cement tunnel thing, looked like it could've been a sewer tunnel.  As the oldest in the group I was the only one that could run and jump right onto the tunnel.  I loved that thing, as it was one of my three favorite spots in the playground.  If I didn’t have a good running start I would use my hands to jump up onto it.  Which was the flaw in having an action figure for the target in the game.  I ran and jumped up, putting the hand down with April against the cement… only to hear the break.  I came to a fast stop and found that both legs were broken off of April.  From that day on the game went to using a trading card for April instead.


I am not one who can throw a part of my collection away easy.  I will do what I can to hold onto any piece in this collection.  And for me, she is important because she was my first April toy.  Many times I tried to fix her, though it was hopeless, her bottom half would come part no matter which glue I used.  After a long time of searching I found a replacement April.  I put April and all of her pieces in a big duffle bag I use for my TMNT weapons bag.  I still have April and all of her parts, and while I’m sure if I look into it now with all the custom toys being made, I could find a way to truly fix her.   I’m just not sure if I want to now.  When I take her out of that bag and look at her, I’m reminded of the fun I had in 6th grade and this piece of history in my fandom.


I have many April toys now, 2nd editions and even a few first editions.  They rotate from being on display to being put away.  Though the April that will always stand out the most to me, is my one with no legs attached.  

Do you still have your first April O’Neil toy? Was she from the original line of Playmates Action figures?  Let us know about your first April toy.  All reviews, comments and questions are welcomed below. 


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