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Toys / Monster in My Pocket

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NES game box art.

Monster in My Pocket is a media franchise developed by Morrison Entertainment Group, headed by Joe Morrison and John Weems, two former senior executives at Mattel.

The focus is on monsters and legendary creatures from religion, mythology, literary fantasy, science fiction, cryptids and other anomalous phenomena. Monster in My Pocket produced trading cards, comic books, books, toys, a board game, a Nintendo Entertainment System video game by Konami and an animated TV special, along with music, clothing, kites, stickers and various other items. Today, it's now part of the much larger " my Pocket" franchise which, had expanded to include more than just monsters (e.g., Puppy In My Pocket, which had been adapted into an Italian-produced animated series).

The line proved controversial for various reasons. Many changes were implemented that took it away from its original mythmaking focus, though it recently re-emerged with the original idea intact in 2006 in the UK but with less than desired results.

Not to be confused with Pocket Monsters, a.k.a. Pokémon; this confusion is exactly why Pokémon is called Pokémon in the West (and later everywhere else) to begin with.

This franchise provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Villainy:
    • Vampire and Swamp Beast were good monsters in the toyline, but were portrayed as evil monsters in the animated special "The Big Scream".
    • The video game makes Hobgoblin, Ghost and Gremlin into bad guys, when they were portrayed as members of the good monsters in the Harvey Comics comic book.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: The Harvey Comics miniseries featured a character called the Exterminator, who was a pastiche of The Punisher where he was reinterpreted as a pest controller with a serious mad-on for bugs rather than a vigilante out to wipe out all crime to avenge his family.
  • Animated Adaptation: There was an animated special based on the toyline called "The Big Scream". In it the "good" monsters are in charge of imprisoning "evil" monsters in a mountain prison. Vampire tried to escape by casting a shrinking spell which accounts for everyone's current size. The goal of both groups is to find some way to break the spell, which they both do with temporary success.
  • Armless Biped: A few of the monsters are armless and bipedal or have creepy features that really make one wonder what our ancestors were thinking.
  • Artificial Human: The Monster and Golem count.
  • Boss Rush: The final stage in the NES game forces you to fight the previous bosses again before fighting Warlock.
  • Blue-and-Orange Morality: As with the original myths, most creatures do not follow human rules or ideas.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Not exactly, but each monster had one of six colors from series 1 to 3 it could be, the final series had them multicolor.
  • Comic-Book Adaptation: Harvey Comics produced a comic book based on the toyline that lasted four issues and was written by Dwayne McDuffie. This one had the premise of Vampire leading a group of good monsters against Warlock's team of evil monsters after Warlock's attempt to shrink all monsters against him instead shrunk every monster.
  • Covers Always Lie: Blemmyes appears on the cover of the video game, and is even the exclusive packed-in monster that comes with it, but never actually appears in the game itself.
  • Death by Origin Story: Comedically subverted in the second issue of the Harvey Comics miniseries, where the Exterminator explains his resentment for bugs happening because of a day where fire ants ruined a picnic he was having with his family. We're initially led to believe that the fire ants killed his wife and kids, but the Exterminator clarifies that his relatives are unharmed and he's just pissed about the ants ruining his family's picnic.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Vampires, Bloody Bones, and even The Beast are not always seen as bad in this series.
  • Double Jump: Standard implementation in the NES game. Generally required to gain the height necessary to hit the final boss.
  • Frankenstein's Monster: The Frankenstein monster was but one of the iconic monsters to be depicted in the toyline.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: They started as random collectible figures that came in packs of 6, 12, and the rare 24. In order to own a full set you had to buy them all and trade with friends..sometimes you traded with total strangers and sometimes you had multiple copies. For a very limited time in 1997 - 1998 there was a mail-in trader forum on the internet hosted by where you could do a 1 for 1 with a 3$ money order trade but that was disbanded in 1998 when series 4, one focused on big bugs, came out.
  • Hellhound: Cerberus.
  • Invisible Streaker: In the Harvey Comics series, the Invisible Man eventually decides to go without clothing due to enjoying the freedom and figuring that he'd be more use to the good monsters if he can't be seen.
  • Jekyll & Hyde: The Mad Scientist figure is an interpretation of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The Harvey Comics miniseries notably depicted Dr. Jekyll as a member of the good monsters, with Warlock at one point trying to bring Jekyll to the side of the evil monsters by forcing him to drink the potion that turns him into Mr. Hyde.
  • Improvised Weapon: In the NES game, weapons include keys and bolts (as in nuts and), which are as tall as the monsters.
  • Incredible Shrinking Man: The whole premise behind the comics, animated series, video game, and even the 2nd relaunch of the toys in 2006 is that the monsters used to be normal-sized, but ended up shrinking to their current pocket-sized states.
  • Lilliputians: The whole Monster Mountain area in the comic books and animated series.
  • Macro Zone: In the NES game, both the Vampire and the Monster are stuck in a giant-sized world. The player goes across a kitchen, hallway, bedroom, city street, and a sewer system.
  • Mad Scientist: The toyline actually had a figurine named "Mad Scientist". While the original figurine was based more on Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde rather than being a generic mad scientist, the version of the figure in the 2006 relaunch was a better fit for the general archetype due to being reinterpreted as a bald, hunched over man in a labcoat and the bio mentioning his scheme to create a formula that will enable him to take over the world.
  • Monster Mash: The very concept of the toyline is that the figurines are of monsters from various folklore and mythologies.
  • Mouse World: In the UK Comics Werewolf & Witch share a house made of giant (normal to you and me) playing cards while Warlock uses a kitchen ladle (for him that's like a huge cauldron) to brew his potions.
  • Olympus Mons: Some of the monsters are representatives of godly figures after all.
  • Our Hydras Are Different: The Hydra is a seven-headed winged reptilian, not a ten-headed dragon.
  • Our Monsters Are Different: As they are based on mythical and legendary figures, this speaks for itself.
  • Sadly Mythtaken:
    • The Hindu figures Kali, Ganesha and Hanuman were depicted as bad or evil monsters, probably leading to a recall in the UK.
    • The Hydra is a seven-headed winged Reptilian, instead of a ten-headed dragon.
  • Spring-Heeled Jack: Spring-Heeled Jack is part of the first series of Monsters and a prominent figure in the franchise. He appears in the comics as one of the evil monsters, and pretty high up too. Along with Medusa, he's the Number Two of Warlock. In the video game, he provides the first boss fight. In the unproduced CGI cartoon series, he might have been a good monster if the remaining documentation is to be trusted.
  • Stock Monster Symbolism: Vampires are aristocratic and Werewolves are brutes, etc etc.
  • Truth in Television: The monsters ranged from cryptids and mythological figures (gods included!) to urban legends and modern mythos. In fact it caused an upset group of citizens from THREE different countries to demand censorship of the company America had Matoon, Illinois for the Mad Gasser, Brittan had Yorkshire, London for Jack the Ripper, India had practically the whole country for Genesh and at least one country to boycott them, Australia for the Bunyips.
  • Vampires Hate Garlic: The animated special "The Big Scream" had Carrie Raven attempt to ward off Vampire using garlic. Vampire promptly eats the garlic and remarks "Don't believe everything you read".
  • Victory Fakeout: Warlock pulls a spectacular one in the NES game, even providing the page's quotes.
  • Wutai: The fifth level of the game takes place in a bamboo garden and Japanese-style house, with Tengu as local enemies.
  • Your Vampires Suck: In "The Big Scream", Carrie Raven attempts to scare Vampire off by showing him garlic. Vampire responds by eating the garlic and remarking "Don't believe everything you read!"

Alternative Title(s): Monster In My Pocket