In 1996 Independence Day
rocked the box office, the "Macarena" began its trek up the charts before landing on wedding dance floors, and Elmo first showed the world his predilection for tickles. Tickle Me Elmo is remembered as one of the most difficult-to-find toys of the 1996--or any--holiday season.
Elmo gets more outrageous when you "tickle" him a second time, and the fun really starts with the third "tickle" session
Ten years later, T.M.X. Elmo (the X stands for 10) was unveiled to the world on Good Morning America
on September 19. The most secretly guarded toy of the pre-holiday season, if not all time, T.M.X. Elmo was shown only to a few toy-industry insiders prior to his release. This secrecy didn't stop thousands of pre-orders from piling up. Though now that all is known, the obvious question is: Does T.M.X. Elmo deserve the hype?
When you first take him out of his box, T.M.X. Elmo doesn't seem all that grand. He looks after all, well, like Elmo. Covered in the soft red fur that one would expect from everyone's favorite Sesame Street character, T.M.X. Elmo stands an unimposing 14 inches tall. Even worse, he feels all hard and plasticy under his fur. But this Elmo is not meant for cuddles or hand holding or swaddling.
This Elmo is all about tickles.
Sit T.M.X. Elmo down and hit one of his three "tickle" spots. There's one under his chin, one on his belly, and one on top of his foot. Yes, this Elmo wiggles just like he did 10 years ago, but that's just the start. Elmo slaps his belly, falls forward with his butt sticking out, stands back up again only to topple backwards, kicks his legs over his belly, and then stands right back up, all while laughing hysterically.
Elmo gets more outrageous when you "tickle" him a second time, and the fun really starts with the third "tickle" session. Elmo's fancy moves include falling over on his side, shimmying on his back, and what seems to be everyone's favorite: lying flat on his belly slapping the floor next to him as if he cant stop laughing. This Elmo has a serious case of the giggles. His trademark voice builds into a fit of histrionics, endless snickers that drown out everything but an unintelligible cackle until even Elmo admits he has had too much.
T.M.X Elmo requires 6 AA batteries, which are included, although these wore down quickly in our review copy. Elmo also has an on/off switch, so the tickles can be brought to an end when more than just Elmo has had too much. He moves a lot and needs a little open space for the full performance, although he does use his arm to determine his orientation periodically and stand back up if nothing is in the way. He gets a little stuck on uneven surfaces but for the most part performs amazingly well on carpet. On hardwood floors, Elmo works, but he occasionally slams his eyes on the floor in a way that seems it should halt the show.
In the end, T.M.X. Elmo is undeniably a trooper. Early reviews show that this turbocharged version of Tickle Me Elmo will follow the stellar path enjoyed by his much simpler predecessor. --David Morel
Elmo has impressive automatic stand up action keeps you going while he continues to giggle and say, "I got tickled". It has three modes of giggle action - Press its foot or belly and hear "You tickled Elmo." TI can go from standing to sitting. Then, it falls back, sits and stands straight up again - the whole time giggling away and flapping its right arm. Touch its belly again, and it sits and rolls from one side to the other. It ends up on his back, kicking his legs, flapping his arms and giggling with the words, "You did it again." It ends his hilarious giggle session by standing up and letting out a deep sigh. This Elmo has a few more phrases: "Again, again," and "Give Elmo a break, please," and "I can't stop laughing". It require six AA batteries, which are included and it measures 15"H.