J.A.F.O. - Just Another FUNKO Observer's Page - THE FUNKO TIMELINE
THE FUNKO TIMELINE
Funko was founded by Mike Becker, with the product line:
Wacky Wobblers – the Bob’s Big Boy Wobbler / Bobblehead was the first item sold by Funko.
Later packaging would include a mini fold out checklist of the wobblers available from Funko.
Later the first exclusive item from a retailer would be the Bob’s Big Boy Bank by Hobbs & Dobbs.
Also the first wobbler exclusive would be the Black/White Betty Boop from Sparky’s.
Funko had two large advertising one page fold outs available. Printed on both sides they resembled
a map, helping you find all the Funko products available in stores.
Funko would start retiring wobblers. Announcing in the summer fold out the Funko’s Wobble of Fame,
this named the wobblers that were already retired from production. The next to retire would include
the original Rat Fink, Twinkie the Kid, and Count Chocula / Frankenberry on August 1st.
Freddy Funko was first introduced in Wacky Wobbler form. He was part of the package you received
when joining the Funko FunKlub.
Funko would put out there first multi page catalog. It included a Master Checklist with dates as
to when wobblers were released for 1998 – 2002. It also had a Coming Soon section, with a picture of the first celebrity
holding a Funko Wacky Wobbler of their likeness. Mr. T with his wobbler.
The first Funko Collector of the Month was named; it was Brandon “Let’s Get Wacky” Clarke.
Who was one of the two people to originate the Wobble World ezboards forum for Funko collectors.
The Wacky Wobbler Field Guide was published by Funatics from Wobble World ezboards, and the
The first Funday event was held at Sparky’s at Los Angeles City Walk in September.
Funko at this time was selling product lines that included:
Wacky Wisecracks (mini wobblers)
Handy Dandy Puppets
The FunkoFunatic.com phpBB board was created for Funatics to discuss Funko, and share product
information as well as for Funatics to share in their collecting. A discussion board with product
lines, Funko announcements, Funko events, and various other forums were started there.
In Las Vegas, Nevada the Funday #2 celebration was held in October at the Tropicana Hotel.
The Golden Underwear Awards were given out by the COF Mike Becker. The first actual BOF (Box Of Fun) was given to
Ness Magana, he was first in line of approximately 120 Funatics. Funday had a Custom Wobbler Contest, Wobbler Dance
Contest, Wobbler Costume Contest, and a Trivia Contest where attendees could win prizes.
The Peek a Boo Pop Ups line was introduced, vinyl characters created by the Funko designers
that had a message pop up from the top of their heads.
The Spastik Plastik line was also introduced; these were packaged in a tube form. This line
consisted of original characters from the Funko designers in the creative art department. Later the line would include
designs from Vinnie Fiorello the drummer from the Less Than Jake band.
Lee’s Toy Review magazine would start to continue on with the Funko Collector of the Month,
with Funko naming a collector, in their publication. Along with new products either out or coming soon, a small article
would be on the page with a collector that was named for that month. This started in December.
The 40” Life Sized Freddy Funko was sold through the Funko website. He was a limited edition
of 100 pieces, hand numbered and signed by Mike Becker. He was a Funko Mart Deal available through the store section of
the website. He was sold by phone orders on January 20th.
The Fantastik Plastik line was introduced. Licensed characters in vinyl figure form packaged
in a tube form also. This line included characters from the Mad Monster Party movie by Rankin & Bass. Also sets of the
Wacky Races television series from Hanna Barbera, and the Duck Dodgers in the 24th and a Half Century cartoon by
The Triple Treats line was introduced. These were 5” wobblers with candy, and a card inside.
“It’s a card, its candy, it’s a collectible!” was the tag line.
In March the Just Another Funko Observer website is launched on a dedicated server with its
own url. The website is to promote Funko and their product lines, as well as the Funatic way of sharing Funko Information
and having FUN.
In July the Funday #3 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the first time.
It was there that Mike Becker announced that Funko was sold to Brian Mariotti during Funday #3. Also the First Funko
Hall Of Fame Awards were given out, there six people were inducted at the Holiday Inn on the Bay Hotel.
The Bobble Breeze line was introduced. These were carded air fresheners of licensed characters
for your car dashboard. Refills were also sold separately.
The Bobble Banks line was introduced as coming soon. Some of the 12” licensed character
products included sound. Also Giant Sized Toys were reintroduced by Funko. Licensed characters included Scooby Doo,
Snoopy, Tom & Jerry, and also Stewie from the Family Guy.
The Bobble Cars line was introduced with Frankenberry, Count Chocula, Speed Racer, Betty Boop,
Quagmire from Family Guy, and also a Cruisin’ Bone Daddy car.
Kustom Kulture was a line promoted in the catalog. The first 24” Rat Fink was pictured, along
with a Hot Rod Rat Fink Bobble Car Bank, and a new Rat Fink Wobbler figure sculpt.
In May the first FDO : Funatics Day Out was held in three cities: New York, Minneapolis, and Hollywood.
Funatics would take the day to get together and meet up to hang out with other collectors. Bowling, a Movie, or a BBQ lots
of good fun all day long.
In July the Funday #4 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the second straight
year. It was there that Brian Mariotti continued on with the celebration for collectors and Funatics of Funko that
Mike Becker had started. Six more people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame. Brad Cameron was named Online
Dealer of the Year for his company Cameron Collectibles.
The FunkoVision line was introduced as coming soon. Licensed vinyl figures inside a television
of cartoon TV series. They were limited edition sets with a scenic background, and the figures were removable.
In July the Funday #5 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the third year.
This year seven people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame.
The MotorHeadz line was introduced in this year’s catalog. Kustom air fresheners using just
the head of Funko original characters, that were previously used in past product lines. They included Sike O’ Shriner,
Bone Daddy, and El Diablo to name a few. This was a onetime product line unfortunately.
The Computer Sitters line started with mini wobblers to sit on top of your computer monitor.
They comprised of licensed characters like Spiderman, Betty Boop, Marvin the Martian, and Homer Simpson.
The first Vinyl Figures Set was introduced. It was the Gruesomes two piece set, including
Weirdly and his son Gobby (Goblin). The Gruesomes appeared first on Hanna Barbera’s The Flintstones.
In May the second FDO : Funatics Day Out was held in six cities this time: New York, Minneapolis,
Hollywood were now joined with Indianapolis, Huntsville, and Houston. Again we had our day out on FCBD : Free Comic Book Day
so Funatics could take the day to get together get some comics and meet up to hang out with other collectors.
In July the Funday #6 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the fourth year.
This year six people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to twenty five people inducted.
In October the blog JAFO’s News – the FUN in Funko is launched devoted to help promote Funko
and their product lines, as well as the Funatic way of sharing Funko Information.
Quog’s were introduced as a onetime product line. Featured with an over sized head, also hands
and feet, the line was only comprised of three original Star Trek TV Series figures.
The Funko Force line was introduced. Wolverine from Marvel Comics and the Terminator were
slated to come out in May. Later in the year Sleestak and Chaka from The Land of the Lost would come out.
The Nodniks line was introduced in this year’s catalog. Funko’s first Urban Vinyl line
and they were only 3.75” tall. The concept art in the catalog showed Marvel, Star Trek, and Hanna Barbera characters.
Most would be carded in pairs for retail sale.
Lee’s Toy Review would cease to publish the Funko Collector of the Month in the publication.
Years later they would shut down operations of the magazine. For a short time they would have a website with a similar
make up, but never did they publicize a Funko collector again.
In July the Funday #7 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the fifth year.
This year five people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to thirty people inducted.
In August the first Facebook group devoted to Funko and it’s Funatics is started, the
Just Another Funko Observer group gives information on products by Funko as well as Funatic events that are held.
The Plushies line was introduced. Plush character assortments of the Wizard of Oz,
Alice in Wonderland, Lord of the Rings, and Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer were the first to come out.
The Funko Force line added new items from Marvel like Iron Man; also several Star Wars
characters were added into the line. A rock stars addition to the line included Jimi Hendrix, Bob Marley, Jim Morrison,
and even a couple Elvis Presley pieces. Plus a sculpt of Bruce Lee also.
The Electronics (called FunkoTronics later) line came out at Toy Fair in full force.
It included Jambot (Ear Buds), Headphones, and Lamps. Licensed characters from Star Wars on some of the items, or
the characters were molded figures in the case of the Ear Buds. Later USB Drives would be made the same way, which
would include Marvel characters like Iron Man. Rock Legends would be used as the theme for some of the Headphones;
like the Ramones, the Misfits, Purple Haze (Jimi Hendrix), and Reggae Rasta (Bob Marley).
The Monster Mash Ups line is introduced. It is a onetime product line mashing together
Universal Monsters with Star Wars characters. Chewbacca with Wolf Man, Darth Vader with Frankenstein, Storm Trooper
with a Zombie, and Yoda looked monstrously evil.
In May the third FDO : Funatics Day Out was held in four cities this time: Minneapolis,
Hollywood were now joined with Baltimore, and Ocoee River TN. Again we had our day out on FCBD : Free Comic Book Day
so Funatics could take the day to get together get some comics and meet up to hang out with other collectors. In Tennessee
the Funatics went white water rafting.
In July at San Diego Comic Con Funko Force 2.0 is introduced. These were the first pieces
of what would become the POP! line. Blue Batman, Metallic Blue Batman, Metallic Black Batgirl,and Glow in the Dark
Green Lantern would be available in dome (clamshell) packaging at the convention. Later a boxed version to complete
the limited edition issue number would be available.
Also in July the Funday #8 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the
sixth year. This year four people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to thirty four
The new POP! lines dominated the catalog at Toy Fair, with the first six pages devoted
to the new product line. POP! Heroes (DC Universe), POP! Marvel, POP! Star Wars, POP! Rock, and POP! Movies categories
The Urban Vinyl line is listed in the catalog as coming soon. These will be large sized
vinyls bigger than the traditional Wacky Wobblers. The line will consist of Hip Hop legends like Flava Flav, Chuck D,
Run, DMC, Tupac, and Notorious B.I.G. Another piece of Snoop Dogg is also shown, but never makes it into production.
Talking Wobblers begin to hit the market. Funko making available South Park, with
Beavis & Butthead wobblers. Also available is the bane of every Funko collector’s existence now being sold, the
dreaded Jersey Shore Wobblers.
In May the fourth FDO : Funatics Day Out was held in four cities this time: Minneapolis,
Hollywood were now joined with Baltimore, and Huntsville. Again we had our day out on FCBD : Free Comic Book Day
so Funatics could take the day to get together get some comics and meet up to hang out with other collectors.
In July the Funday #9 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the seventh year.
This year five people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to thirty nine people inducted.
Freddy Funko was introduced in POP! form at the Funday 9 party.
For the first time ever Funko has three catalogs available to attract customers. The Funko
Rocks Catalog (for the NAMM Show), the Funko Featured Products Catalog, and the very large Funko 2012 Catalog.
The POP! line has expanded to include new sizes. The regular POP! that is 4.25” now has
a Big POP! that is 9” in size, and a Mini POP! that is 2.5” in size. The Mini POP! come in sets.
The BLOX line is introduced for the first time. Vinyl 3D Art is the theme on the new line.
Mini BLOX sets will be also available later. Uglydolls, Disney, Star Wars, DC Universe, General Mills Cereal Monsters,
the Simpsons, KISS Demon, and the Mars Attacks Martian are shown in the catalog.
Vinyl Figures had a mash up of KISS and Hello Kitty. More mash ups would come soon.
The second generation Wisecracks line is shown as coming soon. Vinyl figures with a
punch line. Batman, Joker, and Spiderman are shown in concept art form in the catalog.
The Vinyl Invaders robot line is also introduced for the first time. It features Batman
and the KISS Demon in 11” size as a Japanese stylized robot.
The Inspired Apparel line is in the catalog as well, but too little are ever made for
retail sale of the examples shown in the catalog. Five pages of shirt designs finish off the main catalog, but the
in store mostly the ones that are for retail sale are with only a POP! character on them with no tag lines. The examples
in the catalog have catch phrases to go with the characters.
In July the Funday X celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the eighth year.
This year four people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to forty three people inducted.
Funko buys the MIXO company from Mike Becker. They acquire the BOXOS papercraft line, as
well as the Can*Tivities line (later to be called Tin*Tastics).
The first POP! Rides is pictured in the catalog. Marty McFly is sitting in the DeLorean
from Back to the Future. Later we would see Batman in the Batmobile, and Winston Zeddmore in the Ecto 1 from Ghostbusters.
The POP! 3D Bookmarks line is introduced. Mini POP! attached to a bookmark to keep your
place while reading a book.
Wacky Wobblers would see a mash up of Star Wars and the Angry Birds game.
Mini Wobbler Sets were introduced. KISS, and the Big Bang Theory sets were offered first.
Later we would see the Walking Dead in minis also.
Vinyl Figures would see a line of My Little Pony figures.
The Cupcake Keepsakes line would be introduced. They were 3” collectibles that opened up
from the top to put keepsakes in. Disney characters were used, as well as Kermit & Miss Piggy from the Muppets.
The Mystery Minis line was introduced. Blind boxed 2.5” vinyl figures that are themed in
sets of 24 piece per display box. Later 12 piece sets would come out. The first would be actually Mysterio Minis and
they were the Pocket Gods series. Later there would be a DC Universe Batman series, and Disney series that were the
actual Mystery Minis line.
The ReAction line was launched at SDCC 2013 in July with the Alien series. This was a
collaboration of Funko with the Super 7 company. The line is based on style of the action figures of the 1970’s.
In May the fifth FDO : Funatics Day Out was held in nine cities this time: Minneapolis,
Los Angeles, NYC, were now joined with Grand Haven MI, Ontario Canada, San Antonio, San Francisco, Phoenix, and Seattle.
Again we had our day out on FCBD : Free Comic Book Day so Funatics could take the day to get together get some comics
and meet up to hang out with other collectors.
In July the Funday 11 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the ninth
year. This year four people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to forty seven people
inducted. Carol Lamb (ShoMeNodder) was given a 9” Pink Freddy Funko POP! and was named Collector of the Decade. It
was inscribed “Queen Carol – A Decade of Dominance”. The party was expanded to nearly 400 people that were in attendance.
In January Retro Freddy Funko is introduced in a prototype form for a contest on the
The Legacy Collection line is introduced. Highly articulated deluxe action figures
approximately 7’’ tall. The first series was from the Game of Thrones TV series. Later a Book of Life series would
Plain white D.I.Y. POP! figures were introduced. With a special exclusive green edition
to be sold at the ECCC convention, where Funko would have a small booth for the first time.
The Vinyl 3 line was introduced. Interchangeable magnetic vinyl figures that connect with
magnetic power. A DC Universe Batman series was the first to be in production.
The Fabrikations line was introduced. Soft sculpt plush figures that are a high quality
for collecting. Batman, Harley Quinn, Deadpool, and several Star Wars characters are the first to be made in this line.
The Hikari line was introduced at Toy Fair. It showcased the Batman and Teenage Mutant
Ninja Turtles series as the first to be in production. Japanese Sofubi Vinyl that is hand numbered and is each of a
limited edition. Several variants of each sculpt were shown at Toy Fair.
In July the Funday 12 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the tenth year.
This year three people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to fifty people inducted.
Nearly 800 people were in attendance.
The Pocket POP!s line was introduced. They would be sold in tin display cans, and also
boxed separately. They would also include POP! Keychains as a line of products.
The Mopeez line would be introduced as the next generation of plush by Funko. A Marvel
series and a DC Universe series would be the first into production.
Vinyl Sugar was launched through Funko at Toy Fair with several new lines:
- Vinyl Idolz
- Vinyl Vixens
- Super Deluxe Vinyls
In April the Marvel Collector Corps Subscription Box Service official sent out there
first box. The Avengers : Age of Ultron box included the Hulkbuster Iron Man POP!.
In May the sixth FDO : Funatics Day Out was held in twelve cities this time: Minneapolis,
Los Angeles, NYC, San Antonio, San Francisco, Phoenix, Seattle, were joined with Chicago, Washington DC, Kentucky,
Philippines, and Singapore to make this a worldwide event.This time the event was spread out over the first two
weekends for Funatics to meet up to hang out with other collectors.
In June Funko starts the Funatic of the Week on there Blog/website, it's to recognize collectors
and there collections. Each article tells how that Funatic started collecting Funko with highlights of there personal
Funko history. Pictures of there collections are included.
In July the Funday 13 celebration was held in San Diego during Comic Con for the
eleventh year. This year four people were inducted into the Funko Hall Of Fame, bringing the total up to fifty
four people inducted. Nearly 1300 people were in attendance. the Flophouse company was acquired from Mike Becker.
Mike Becker will now be partnering with Funko to bring the POP! Tees line to stores, along with other apparel.
In October Funko, for the first time, set up an exhibitor booth at the New York
Comic Convention (NYCC). Funko had products exclusively for this con only, just like SDCC every
year. POP!, ReAction, Hikari, and POP! Tees were represented in these exclusives.
Late October sees the start of the Funko Spotlight feature on the blog/website. A feature,
mostly monthly, about the people that work at Funko. The first article is about Rob Schwartz one of the Creative Department
Directors and one of the original artists at Funko.
In November the second subscription box was started, the Star Wars : Smuggler's Bounty
box shipped, it's theme was The Force Awakens. Two exclusive POP! figures were included in this box.
Toy Fair will be held from Saturday February 13th through Tuesday the 16th this year.
Funko will be attending with a there biggest presence to date, and has hinted at a few new lines coming.
In March the third subscription box will start, the DC : Legion of Collector's box,
will have a theme of Batman vs. Superman with a Armored Batman POP! in it.
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