He-Man's Stinkor figure still stinks 30 years later

John Brownlee investigates why Stinkor, a 30-year old action figure from Mattel's He-Man lineup, still smells terrible. Surely such an ancient toy would have gone inert? No, no.
If you pick up a vintage Strawberry Shortcake today, she’ll just smell like a doll. Stinkor? Kids today are still marveling at his stench. He’ll smell for decades yet.


  1. I can’t explain why this is the greatest thing but it is.

    Does the same work for the sweet-smelling toys? Does anyone have some old Strawberry Shortcake dolls they can test? I used to have one that burped out fruity/candy-scented breath when you squeezed her…

    1. I dont know about Strawberry Shortcake, but I have a Cherry Merry Muffin doll that still smells of whatever sweet plastic sludge she was created from.

    2. Seriously? The blog post is 57 words, and 15 of them were spent telling us that Strawberry Shortcake doesn’t smell like anything anymore. 

      1. Sorry, should’ve been ultra-clear in my words. I want someone to test this and tell me if it’s TRUE.

        (I even went back into this explanation and emphasized the word “TRUE”)

        1.  This is wrong. I have 30 year old Strawberry shortcake dolls. (Strawberry Shortcake, Apple Dumpling, Angel Food Cake) They still smell faintly of whatever it was they are supposed to smell of.

          1.  I should add that before my daughter got the dolls, they had been through 7 moves, 3 storage units, and a flood. So the fact that they don’t smell of mold is a miracle in itself.

  2. The article does not actually seem to address *why* the smell remains so effective, other than to say it was baked in.  After all, the smell of resin that is brought up in the article does fade, and the toy is composed of it.  Why does the patchouli work so well?

    1. I’m really feeling a hippie joke somewhere in here but I can’t seem to find it…

      “The patchouli works hard because it knows its wearer won’t”  No, that’s not it.

      “The smell is trained to stay around, just like a hippie on a friend’s couch” Nah, not it either.

      Something about “baked in”? 

      Sorry, I got nuthin’.

  3. In a very strange coincidence, I dreamt last night of finding my stash of He-Man figures and being amazing that Stinkor still smelled.

  4. Rats. Mattel beat me to the punch.

    I’ve had this imaginary villain in my head since ’91 at least — “Dedo de la Muerte”.
    Don’t pull his finger. You have been warned.

  5. I have the Strawberry Shortcake from the early 80’s that blew strawberry kisses.  You would squeeze her stomach, and a puff of “strawberry” scented air would come out.   It was in storage (attic)  in my southern illinois childhood home (NOT climate controlled) for probably 25 years before it made it’s way to me.  To this day she smells, vaguely sweetly obviously strawberry.   Her hair has seen better days, but otherwise pretty good.

    1. You would squeeze her stomach, and a puff of “strawberry” scented air would come out.

      Nightmare fuel.

  6. Oh, man, I can believe it. I had a Stinkor action figure when I was a kid, and did he ever stink. I couldn’t stand having him in my bedroom, so I kept him on the sill outside my window. To the best of my knowledge, he didn’t attract any local skunks.

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