How does a villain catch a Smurf? With a net of course. I’m not sure where the idea came from, whether in the comics or cartoon series. But it’s a great way to portray Gargamel the figurine. Without delving too much into details, in my opinion there are three versions of Gargamel with a net #20181.
Variations of Gargemel with net
W.Germany Schleich S 1983 Peyo Black PVC, yellow handle and net, smooth oval green base
Portugal Schleich S 1980 Peyo Skin colour PVC. brown handle and a yellow net, smooth oval green base
Hong Kong W.Berrie Co. Schleich S Peyo
Each one three different things to be aware of when considering adding to one’s collection. For example, the one with a brown handle and a yellow net can be in a curved shape. It was manufactured like this and was no accident. Sadly, though I have found this causes Gargamel to become unsteady and can fall over if not supported.
I also found that the base can vary; smooth to grass pattern base.
So what makes Gargamel with net worth collecting? In my opinion, it captures the image of a baddie really well. Like a lot of villains portrayed in comics and cartoons, Gargamel is not the most intelligent. To be able this into portray this into a figurine is no easy feat. – Well done & thank you Schleich!
I never really watched the cartoon series that was on television back in the 1980’s. Even now I haven’t really sought them out to watch. Most people find this quite surprising considering I like to collect Smurf figurines. So imagine my surprise when I found out about the story behind the making of Puppy.
In 1987 Schleich declared bankruptcy but somehow managed to release eight new Smurfs. One of these was Puppy #20405. In the Smurf Collector’s Club International (SCCI) newsletter issue 7 it goes into detail how Peyo had not approved some of the colours on the figurines. It goes onto to say that the SCCI wrote to Peyo voicing their objections and opinions.
One of their objections was to do with the figurine Puppy. “Puppy’s ears on the cartoon are different in colour. Also his body appears to be greyish and not brown like the figurine”. What’s interesting to note that Peyo wrote back to the SCCI to confirm modifications would be made. Two years later, Puppy was produced in grey.
Upon reading this, I knew I had look out for Puppy brown or grey I didn’t care. But luckily for me my first Puppy was a brown mould. Soon after that I had two grey moulds with different markings. I also knew it was in my best interest to learn more about the origins of Puppy.
What to look out for with Puppy
When looking to add Puppy to your collections, there are a couple of things to take of note.
Firstly, the markings are found on Puppy’s stomach and not on his feet.
Secondly, Schleich and Applause both produced versions of Puppy. Both produced brown and grey moulds.
Lastly in 2011 a board game included Puppy with a very light brown mould. Some say only 250 board games included this version of Puppy. In spite of that I was able to find one in The Netherlands in 2019.
I guess it just goes to show that behind every Smurf there is a story.