Which ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toys are best?

“Monsters, Inc.” may have been released back in 2001, but even today, people continue to sing its praises as if it had just come out. The story about a pair of monsters that generate power by scaring children has found new life in a prequel movie, “Monsters University,” as well as a TV series called “Monsters at Work.” Today, children can continue to live in the monsters’ world through these inventive toys.

From our findings, the best “Monsters, Inc.” toy you can buy is the ​Pixar Mattel Mike and Boo Monsters, Inc. Character Action Dolls. These action figures are highly detailed, resemble the movie characters accurately, and can be posed in various ways for display, play or reenacting scenes from the movie.

What to know before you buy a ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toy

The ‘Monsters, Inc.’ story

The story follows two monsters, James P. “Sulley” Sullivan and his best friend and coworker Mike Wazowski, who work at Monsters, Inc., a power plant that generates energy through monsters that scare children. At the plant, monsters are trained to scare and taught that all children are toxic. One day, a child named Boo sneaks into the plant through an active door (portals from the plant into the children’s homes). Sulley and Mike work together to bring the child home, while attempting to avoid the attention of the rest of the plant workers. 

Different kinds of toys

You may be surprised at the variety of “Monsters, Inc.” toys available on the market. Expect to find anything from plush dolls to solid action figures, from toy playsets to display bobbleheads. Take your time to look through the different toys available. If you plan on getting it as a gift, consider what kind of play your recipient likes to engage in: Do they prefer interactive play or prefer figurines? There’s something available for everyone.

Recommended age group 

The original “Monsters, Inc.” movie received a G rating from the MPAA, meaning it was safe for all general audiences, while Common Sense Media recommends the film for 5 years or older. But younger children or more sensitive kids may feel scared from certain scenes. The toys based on the film are less scary, but if they found the film already a little unsettling, the toy designs (such as that of Randal or Henry J. Waternoose III) may resurface the same feelings of fear. Be mindful of the children you end up buying the toys for and whether they enjoyed the movie or found it scary. 

What to look for in a quality ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toy

Sturdy/solid construction

Unless the toy is meant for display or a collection, expect that they will be bashed around, thrown across the room, or even hit with other hard toys. While no toy is indestructible, it’s only reasonable to expect it to withstand the usual rough play habits of a child. Look for toys that are made well with solid materials, or stitched carefully with soft materials. You will want them to last a relatively long time.

Accurate designs and paintwork

Pixar is famous for featuring iconic character and monster designs, from the color palette of each character, to their unique facial expressions. Only look out for toys officially licensed by Pixar and Disney, as these toys will more closely resemble the characters from the movie. You never want to give a knockoff toy, as it may ruin the fantasy of owning a character or a toy from the film.

Fun factor

Of course, at the end of the day, the main point of a toy is to be fun to play with. Whether it’s the fun from pretending to be a part of that world (such as having a Monsters, Inc. worker lunchbox) or playing with figurines to recreate scenes from the movie, you will want to think about how you or your recipient will play with these toys.

How much you can expect to spend on a ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toy

“Monsters, Inc.” toys can range wildly in price, starting as cheap as $10 for simple plastic figures, going up all the way to almost $100 for more complex or detailed toys. 

‘Monsters, Inc.’ toy FAQ

Will this be suitable for a toddler?

A. It all depends on your toddler! Ask yourself whether they enjoyed the movie, whether they may be prone to any choking hazards from any small pieces, and whether they would actually play with these toys. We recommend most recipients be at least 5 years old for the listed toys.

What is the officially licensed manufacturer for a ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toy?

A. Disney has officially licensed a couple manufacturers for its toys. These include Mattel for most of the figurines, Hot Wheels for “Monsters, Inc.”-branded cars and Pillow Pets for convertible plush dolls/pillows.

What are the best ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toys to buy?

Top ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toy

​Pixar Mattel Mike and Boo Monsters, Inc. Character Action Dolls

​Pixar Mattel Mike and Boo Monsters, Inc. Character Action Dolls

What you need to know: Mike Wazowski and Boo had some of the best scenes, just because of Mike’s reluctance to care for Boo at first. Now you can have them as action dolls!

What you’ll love: These figures are made with great detail, resembling the original character designs accurately and making them great for recreating scenes.

What you should consider: Doesn’t come with Sulley, which would otherwise complete the main cast of characters.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top ‘Monsters, Inc.’ toy for the money

Pillow Pets Monsters Inc 16" Sulley Stuffed Animal

Pillow Pets Monsters Inc 16″ Sulley Stuffed Animal

What you need to know: A soft and comfy plush of the blue, furry monster, Sulley.

What you’ll love: Use Sulley as a pet or doll to play with, or convert him to a pillow to lay on or cuddle with.

What you should consider: Some pillows have reportedly been sent out that do not resemble the advertised photograph.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

​Pixar Interactables Mike Wazowski Talking Action Figure

​Pixar Interactables Mike Wazowski Talking Action Figure

What you need to know: Mike Wazowski has some of the funniest lines in the film, and now you can hear new jokes with this toy!

What you’ll love: Hear Mike say funny lines or greet other characters from the film with the press of a button. 

What you should consider: Doesn’t come with any of the other characters, but would pair well with Sulley or Boo.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Leo Herrera-Lim writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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