Jabba the Hutt-Like Trinket Box from Surprise It’s A Box (S.I.A.B.)
“Surprise It’s A Box” was British company (or perhaps a line of collectibles made by another British company — it’s been difficult to find any information about them). As the name suggests, they made trinket boxes that look like statues at first glance, until you remove their lids. From what I can gather, they probably stopped producing these in the late 1990s.
I’ve posted about a lot of things that were clearly parodies of Jabba the Hutt in the past, but this probably falls more under the “was probably inspired by” column. I don’t have any evidence to suggest that the artist (Michael R. Tandy, according the name inscribed on the lip of the box) was intentionally imitating Jabba, but it’s hard to deny the resemblance. When I took it out of the box, my two-year-old daughter cried “Jabba!” (We like to start ’em young at our house…)
It’s possible the character of Jabba was just a subconscious influence on the artist, or perhaps the resemblance is entirely in my mind. “Jabba” in this case appears to be an undersea creature of some sort who has been dumped by his sweetheart. A mermaid is attempting to comfort him with some “broken heart tonic.” She gives me a little bit of a “Slave Leia” vibe as well. It’s about 3.75″ tall by 5″ wide, and fairly heavy — I understand it was made using a mixture of crushed marble and resin to achieve a kind of faux ivory look.
If you lift the lid (consisting of the creature’s head and upper torso) off, you’ll see his broken heart inside, along with a note from his beloved reading, “Dear Limo, Sorry my love for you had to end, Mez.” I’m not sure if there was any more detailed story that went along with it, or if were just supposed to fill in the blanks with our imaginations.