Is this a Smurf?
Astrosniks vs Smurfs. Astrosniks (also called Sniks) are little outer-space creatures that live on the planet Snikeria. They are said to be strong, friendly and very intelligent. Astrosniks speak their own special language, Sniklish.
Although Snik figures are the same size as Smurfs (about 2 inches tall), there are some noticable distinctions between Sniks and Smurfs. Most Astrosniks wear purple clothing and have green skin (although the earlier ones had either orange, pink or black skin). In contrast, Smurfs have blue skin and wear simple white pants and hats. Astrosniks also stand out for the antennae on their heads and their two front buckteeth, whereas, the Smurfs are lacking both. The Smurfs must have a better dentist!
The Astrosniks figures first came out in 1975 and were made by the German company, Bully. These very first Sniks were all orange-skinned with yellow hair except for Joker Snik (he was the first green-skin Snik). A few years later, black-skinned Astrosniks came on the market. The pink-skinned Sniks were soon to follow. It wasn't until 1980 that Astrosniks were introduced in their most common colors - green skin and purple clothes. This is when Astrosniks truly hit the peak of their popularity not only in Europe but in the USA too. Even McDonalds issued two distinctive sets of Astrosnik toy prizes for Happy Meals in 1983 and 1984. These McDonald's Sniks all have the "M" logo marked on them. McDonalds also had a limited release of Sniks in 1985 (without any McDonalds markings) - the very same Sniks that were sold in stores at the time. And ultimately, to the delight of Snik collectors everywhere, Bully re-issued the popular green-skin Sniks in 1999.
All in all, there weren't as many different molds of Astrosniks made as there were more color variations. You'll find that many Sniks figures are simply duplicate molds of previous Sniks, just painted with different color skins and clothes. Collecting Sniks, regardless of color, is an out-of-this world experience! Some of the more unique Sniks include: Robo Snik (who is all gold), Pyramido Snik (who is shaped like a triangle), Astralia (the only female Astrosnik), Frigo (who is a snowman snik), Snik (the fat cat), and Snikopotamus or "Potamus" (friendly dragon). The 1980's Astrosnik memorabilia is not just limited to 2-inch figures, there were many other items produced - including plush dolls, colorful books, pencils, t-shirts, wrapping paper, watches and more. The rarest Astrosnik item to collect would have to be the Space-Ship House released in 1981.
Did you know there is also a subspecies of Astrosniks? They are called Marsmen Sniks (Walkman Sniks or Snik Walkmen) because of their distinctive headsets. Walkmen Sniks are round little fellows with no hands or noses, but they do have wonderful smiles, big googly eyes and wear headphones. Coming in a range of colors such as black, blue, green, red, yellow, orange, pink, purple and white, these fun little friends are very colorful, indeed!