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September 2001 Spooky Light-ups - link - discuss

Released by Burger King

Spooky Lightups are figures of 15 citizens of Springfield. Most are characters taken directly from the Simpsons Halloween Special episodes which are commonly known as the "Treehouse of Horror" series. Each figure has a button which activates a lightup feature and many have spin-action signs as well.

The Simpsons Halloween Treehouse of Horror Spooky Light-up Burger King Kids Meal toys follow several successful Simpsons toy promotions at Burger King in the United Kingdom. At long last this set was released on U.S. shores. The official release date was October 1st, 2001, but they began leaking out of store backrooms on September 25th.

This terrific assortment of figural toys based on a variety of characters and costumes from the popular annual Simpsons Halloween Special episodes has won rave reviews from collectors. Going a step beyond the basic PVC figures sold in the overseas Burger King promotions, these include not only Halloween-themed Simpsons figures but also moving parts, light-up features, and display bases. Production of the toys was apparently outsourced to Equity, a company which has manufactured toys for Burger King promotions since the mid-1980s, and may be best known to toy collectors as producers of the recent Scooby Doo action figure line.

An image of the prototype toys originally surfaced in July, 2001. A teaser image was published in August, 2001 on Burger King's web site. It introduced the name "Spooky Simpsons Light-ups" and was the first indication of the special light-up feature. An advertising sheet designed for display in Burger King stores features original artwork, displays finalized photos of all 15 toys, and incorporates a 1950s B-movie theme.

Burger King published the official press release on September 28th, 2001. They also launched their Simpsons Spooky Light-ups web site around this time, showcasing close-up pictures of all the toys, their official names, individual character bios, as well as "in-character" Trick or Treating tips from Homer, Marge, Bart, and Lisa.

The general release schedule for these toys consisted of one case assortment of three toys released each week for a period of five weeks. The order in which stores release each assortment varies, and they may rotate to the next assortment quicker if they sell out of the first, but the one constant is that Homer, Lisa, and Principal Skinner were not made available anywhere initially. All 12 of the other toys were available the first week in some locations. Some locations do not allow purchase of the toys without buying a Kids Meal, while others will sell them individually for anywhere from $0.60 to $2.15 each.

Actual Release Pictures and Descriptions

Case ?:
3) Apu-mpkin (a.k.a. Apu Nahasapeemapetilon) - push the switch and his Squishee machine lights up
4) Brain Borrowing Burnsie (a.k.a. Montgomery Burns) - push Robot Homer's nose and Robot Homer's brains light up
5) Ned the Hook Man (a.k.a. Ned Flanders) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: "I'm Hook-Diddly-Ooked..On Hall-O-Ween!

Case 3:
7) Magglite (a.k.a. Maggie Simpson) - twist Maggie and her pumpkin spins and lights up
8) Grim Groundskeeper (a.k.a. Groundskeeper Willie) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: The Grim Sweeper / Prepare to Meet Thy Broom!
9) Dr. Hibbert (a.k.a. Dr. Julius Hibbert) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: The Doctor Is In...Sane!

Case 4:
10) Witch 'N Kitchen (a.k.a. Marge Simpson) - twist Marge and her cauldron lights up
11) Radioactive Man Milhouse (a.k.a. Milhouse Van Houten) - push the switch and his case of explosives spins and lights up: Up And..Atom!
12) Count Grampula (a.k.a. Grampa Simpson) - push the switch and his tombstone lights up: Springfield Retirement Castle / Blood Drive Today!

Case ?:
13) Skele-Bart (a.k.a. Bart Simpson) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: Bone..To Be Wild!; the skull, zombie hand, and Bart's skeleton costume also glow in the dark
14) Halloween Krusty Show (a.k.a. Krusty the Klown) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: Tonight's Show Is Gonna... Bite!
15) Mummy's Boy Barney (a.k.a. Barney Gumbel) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: King Tut / I Miss My Mummy!

Case ?:
1) Franken-Homer (a.k.a. Homer J. Simpson) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: Fresh From the Grave....Mmm..Gravy!
2) Trick or Screech Lisa (a.k.a. Lisa Simpson) - push Lisa and Snowball II's eyes light up; Lisa has a removable ghost costume
6) Thinner Skinner (a.k.a. Principal Skinner) - push the switch and his tombstone spins and lights up: School's Out..Forever!

Simpsons Collector Sector member shaughn13 sent us these images. Shown here is another picture he sent us comparing the scale of Spooky Light-up Mr. Burns to World of Springfield Smithers.

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