Most counterfeit/bootleg figures that are direct copies of a M.U.S.C.L.E. or Kinnikuman figure are never identified by any other trait besides their inauthenticity. For the more hardcore collectors of counterfeit M.U.S.C.L.E. figures, the figures can be grouped into certain typologies.
And every now and then a packaged set of counterfeit figures are discovered. This discovery allows for the actual brand identification of the figure.
Below is a visual archive of all the specifically identified brands of counterfeit figures. If you have identified a brand of counterfeit M.U.S.C.L.E. figure that is not featured, then please share it with the M.U.S.C.L.E. community. Submissions can be sent to the University of M.U.S.C.L.E..Alien Wrestler
These were one of the earliest identified counterfeit figures. These figures are known for their distinct color, relative softness, rough edges, and extra flashing. These figures are also prone to odd discolorations. Perhaps the most notable trait about these figures is their terrible quality control. Loose heads are included in packaged samples.
These are a very recent discovery (approximately ~2009). These figures originated in South America. The smaller size suggests they may be copies of copies. The figures are very solid and a wide variety of bright colors.
Future Strength figures have largely been referred to as counterfeit or bootleg M.U.S.C.L.E. figures by most M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors. In reality, Future Strength figures are a unique type of “counterfeit” figure – they are Masquerading MUSCLE’s.
For a full breakdown of the figures, please read the Future Strength write-up.
There seemed to be a period of time where M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors couldn’t give these figures away. They were everywhere and everyone had too many. These figures are most identifiable by their flat color, softness, and flashing.
Three of the four figures in this package appear to be translucent robots. The fourth figure is clearly a counterfeit #3 M.U.S.C.L.E. figure. Without knowing the density and pliability of the #3 it is very difficult to identify the typology. Based on the coloring alone and the large amount of flashing it appears that it could be an N or O.
These are the most recent retail discover of counterfeit M.U.S.C.L.E. figures. The 2009 discovery seemed to match figures from as early as 2005. Further research was able to document more figures, plus the actual store selling them.