As is often the case with me, much the 2013's later releases from MattyCollector just ended up in a "to open" pile which I was just never that compelled to get to. Sure there's some neat stuff in here but just nothing that had me especially excited to tear into these. It's ultimately this sense of malaise that led me to not subscribe to MoTUC for 2014. I'm kind of kicking myself for it, but I also don't have junk like Geldor that even though he was in the "to open" pile I wasn't compelled to open. At any rate, enough bellyaching from yours truly - let's get to the toys.
Mattel: DC Signature Collection - Batzarro
This toy is offensive as hell. Yes, he turned out good, but that they made him? Over anything else!? Almost quite literally, ANY other character would be better than this. It's not the fans that killed the line, it's Matty. I subbed for 2014 but how can I expect anyone else to when we get junk like this. Batzarro doesn't fill any hole in the collection because he was in NO WAY missing from the collection.
Mattel: DC Signature Collection - Ocean Master
Yet another character I'm only aware of thanks to other toys that came before him. I'm nuts for Aquaman so I guess this is nice in that regard, but again... just such a ridiculous costume I can't help but think of what we don't have instead of this guy. At least he's a new/unique character that has some relevance to the history of the comic. Paint is good and sculpting is unremarkable. The cape is so huge that it both further heightens the silliness of the character and makes him difficult to display since it takes up so much room. He does come with an accessory, so that makes him better than many Matty non-MotUC releases.
Mattel: DC Signature Collection - Ra's Al Ghul
Finally a character worth having! Plus, he's in the Batman: the Animated Series costume (which might have been a classic comic outfit too?). Like Ocean Master he too has a big cape that is a little tough to work with in terms of posing. It doesn't help, of course, that he uses the old Clark Kent body with the annoyingly forward tilted neck. Add in Mattel's refusal to do good neck articulation and you get a Ra's that can basically never look up or even forward, only down or slightly down. The face is also in that weird OMAC & Guy Gardner style of being very undetailed and flat. If ever there was a DC character that needed a detailed, atmospheric, character-fueled face it was Ra's so this is ultimately a lackluster release for me since he essentially looks like "just a guy." He comes with a scimitar as well which is a great inclusion, but looks a little silly in his hands.
Mattel: Masters of the Universe Classics - Horde Troopers
Well, this is better than the Snake Men but not as cool as the Palace Guards. They certainly are neat looking robots but the final execution... they definitely fall more on "animated style" end of the spectrum. I suppose that's fine since I understand they're only from the cartoons, but it's a bit frustrating because the more "Classics-ized" versions of such characters turn out pretty good. I was also very surprised by how limited their range of motion is. Sure they're bulky designs but I figured they'd be able to just make more robust joints with that. They do come with a bunch of accessories though, which is great. Except... yep, I'm going to complain some more, it's like there's too many accessories. Just much too much to know what to do with. I would have been more than happy to forgo the ubiquitous crossbows for alternate helmets. Ultimately, for me, this is just another average MotUC and another fine reminder than the line really isn't for me and hence why I have pretty much dropped it.
Mattel: Masters of the Universe Classics - Lord Dactus
Aha, that's how they were able to do Draego-Man! I knew those wings would have to be used again, and used again they were! This figure is actually a great example because all you need to do is compare the fairly detailed wings to the largely undetailed figure to see the stylistic discrepancy. Still though, the design is cool enough that I was happy to roll with it, but I have to say that once in hand there is something about his proportions that really bugs me. I think it's his long, narrow neck and head versus the thick bulk of the body plus the new legs. The feet have redonkulously big metal knife-toes which inhibit posing, surprisingly much, due to lack of a rocker joint. He comes with a nice sword, too. Though I'm a bit disappointed in the final figure I'm pleased to have him. I think he'll balance out Carnivus very well in both style and color. Plus, in terms of new tooling and sheer mass it seems like there are few better "deals" in the line.
Mattel: Masters of the Universe Classics - Mantenna
Yay! The last character to be released I have any sort of connection to (since they ostensibly charged $300 for Two-Bad [and until they make a Gwildor I won't have access to]) and he turned out AWESOME!!! The figure is almost, if not, entirely new tooling and just looks beautiful. Great, knocked-out-of-the-park sculpting from the Four Horseman in beautiful, rich shades of red and blue - this is truly MotUC at its finest. The four legs are fully articulated and offer much more dynamic posing options that I imagined. He also comes with interchangeable eyes and a removable mouth. I don't quite get the latter feature as it interferes with the eyes pretty minimally and easily could have been sculpted to avoid them. He gets interchangeable eyes which seem to be better in theory than in practice. He also gets the obligatory Horde crossbrow which is just big and excessive, and honestly I think he looks way cooler holding Ra's Al Ghul's scimitar anyway. All in all, I'd say this is a fault-less figure for the line and for Matty, so if you can get your hands on him - do!
Mattel: Masters of the Universe Classics - Plundor
This was a big WTF for me, and first just seemed another hokey character I'd never heard of but with the slight novelty of being a pink battle rabbit. I was a little surprised fans seemed so upset about this figure. What makes this figure work is the heavy detailing in terms of his fur. Sure it's just a simple re-use of the Beast-Man body but it works perfectly and is EXACTLY what's missing from Lord Dactus and the Horde Troopers above - it elevates the figure above the source material by slightly and successfully re=imagining it rather than staying beholden to the source material. He comes with a little blaster and a neat axe (presumably cast in translucent plastic and painted over to allow the jewel atop it). There is something about the blaster and his semi-cocky expression that gives the figure a somewhat Han Solo feel, which is oddly cool. I'm not sure where he fits in my collection (I know he's Filmation but I think he's better than the rest of that subset) but I'm pleased to have him.
Mattel: Watchmen - Ozymandias
Not with a bang with a whimper. Ozy is my least favorite design from the book and it's always been hard for me to take him seriously in such a silly get-up. The figure captures the look well enough though with the sundress cast in articulation-limiting thick plastic and two interchangeable heads for masked and unmasked looks. I am actually sort of surprised (though I shouldn't be) that he doesn't come with Bubastis, and that really, really kills the figure and hurts the line. And I'm not even talking about a great Bubastis, just a simple PVC pack-in (like Cringer) in a simple seated pose. I suppose we should be thankful to have figures from Watchmen after all the years, but like most Mattel product recently I find myself thinking "would I rather have nothing than this" and leaning towards the former. But I've never been that huge of a Watchmen fan so it's not like the hole was really burning in my collection.
Plundor reminds me of Jaxxon from the Star Wars Marvel comics: http://img3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20130926051551/starwars/images/c/c6/Jaxxon3.jpg so it's pretty funny you said he reminds you of Han Solo.
Totally, that's actually who I thought it was for a split second when they revealed him. Hasbro really, really needs to do a Jaxxon
Might never happen now. Disney has been a stop to any "Expanded universe" toys besides a few hard to get recent figures that Hasbro is recarded. Never might that EU figures are often some of the most sought after figures. Herr Maus has final say.
...Yep, this cements it. I'm the only guy who cares about Batzarro. (I suppose dem's da breaks as a Bizarro fan. I love the entire Bizarro thing but it's never had many chances to shine post-Crisis, aka the era where comics [try to] make sense.)
Oh I love Bizarro too, or at least 'Superman Bizarro.' The Bizarro world is a fun concept, I'm just not crazy about Batzarro and more it's the fact they did a figure of him. From understanding Batzarro only ever appeared in the Ed McGuiness book and DCD already made a kickass figure of him. He's just so very, very niche...
Batzarro gets my love for being as close to a classical silver-age 'Bizarro _____ ' we'll ever get again.
Also, DCD's figure has the same issue as all their stuff- crap articulation, ESPECIALLY below the waist.
Rustin... Rustin... Rustin... Sometimes I think you complain just for the sake of complaining... 😉
RE: Horde Troopers. All points you make I can agree with up until I'm going to complain some more, it's like there's too many accessories. Just much too much to know what to do with. Geez man... We're already paying like $60 for the damn thing, so if they want to throw in a few more soft accessories, let 'em! The original figures only came with the red staves. I think the cross bows are neat, every member of the Horde isgetting their own unique weapons! The shields are a nice addition too. I like the cattle prods/anal probes the best though! 😉
RE: Lord Dactus --- Not to say your opinion is any less valid but I believe you are in the minority here. I think Dactus is a great figure and definitely a hilight of last year. I was not expecting to like him at all. When they first revealed the figure I was really kind of underwhelmed, but once I got him in hand I was really impressed w/ him. I've got a nice 2Kx display going on w/ Dactus, Carnivus, Zodak, Keldor, and Marzo. This is actually the third time they've used the wings, Granamyr, Draego-Man, and now Dactus. I was somewhat concerned how they'd look on him, but I think they work.
RE: Mantenna --- Glad you seem to like Mantenna. As you said, they absolutely knocked him out of the park and is without a doubt one of the best MOTUC figures produced to todate. I don't believe the removable mouth was intended as a "feature" it was more just a way to access the eyes? I'm not sure. I do agree that it works better in theory than in practice. Still if it came down to this or not having the feature at all I would prefer this. Although a second head entirely would have been fantastic. If you don't like him w/ the crossbow, you could try giving him the Horde Troopers' anal probe!
RE: Plundor: I haven't actually opened Plundor yet, like yourself I have a "to open" pile, but he's definitely in the queue. I'm going to open him on Easter Sunday I beleive. I think he looks fantastic though. The axe is Skeletor's from Filmation series.
re: RE: Horder Troopers - well I DID warn you I would be complaining some more. I totally agree with upping the value for price but this is one of those "there's no way he can hold everything" scenarios. I've seen some pretty cool Third Party alternate heads for the warriors based on different sources and I would have much more welcomed those in place of the crossbows, etc. And the cattle prods plus shields are my favoite configuration too.
re: RE: Lord Dactys - I think he's cool enough, my main issue those is the inconsistent style of the line - he, and all the 200X figures, seem out of place with the bulk of the line since they are notably more soft and rounded in sculpt.
re: RE: Mantenna - I'm actually keeping him with Ra's scimitar. It actually make him seem like a badass pirate to me for some reason
Better complaint about the Horde Troopers, they went with that circle Hordak face on their chests as a silly homage to the 80's toy (they had a nice regular horde bat emblem on the filmation series). On the 80's action figure, you "punched" that round spot and the robot's chest fell apart. Since these new figures lack that action figure, the homage is aesthetically UGLY.
The tribute to the old figure is also why their helmets have that "V" visor instead of the cartoon's black with yellow triangular "eyes". What they did here doesn't look right unless you tilt their heads down.
Yes, alternate heads would've been a better inclusion, especially since there's source material that uses alternate helmets for these troopers.
I have seen some VERY impressive customs w/ the Troopers. So much potential for them.
I guess *MY* complaint about the Troopers is that one is battle damaged... I *HATE* "battle damaged" figures. The only ones I can accept it on is Battle Armor He-Man and Skeltor! 😉
I'm still ticked off that Mattel did such a bad job advertising MOTU last year. I'd have loved Horde Troopers and Lord Dactys, if I knew they were being made.
Also, wasn't Mantenna supposed to come with a second "Filmation" mouth, and that's why the normal one was removable?
I seen some Third Party mouths that look pretty good on him, so it's (a) possible that was their intent or (b) they very cool-ly left the open for others.
Wait, there are third-party addons for MOTU, now? Oh man...
Yeah... there have been pretty much since the beginning... Spy Monkey Creations, for example
They've made some interesting weapons (swords, axes, etc) but my favorite are the Trap Jaw add ons!
Agh, Batzarro... I feel like if they had buried him halfway through the year the reaction would have been a lot more WTF? than F*** you Matty. That said, I don't think its horrible, just so, so annoying that its what we got.
Watchmen, on the other hand were always disappointing, from the odd Rorschach gun (from the panel in the comic, I think), the misshapen head from Dr. Manhatten, the general bummer of Silk Spectre and Comedian to the meh of Nite Owl and Ozymandias. Again, nothing felt too bad to me, but... I guess I just feel like there was a ton of untapped potential.
I don't collect MOTU, but they seem to always look good for people who do.
Oh, and I saw Pacific Rim series 3 at TRU the other day, didn't know they were there
O is for "oh how I look forward to the return of Spoils!"
F is for "for cryin' out loud, I miss Spoils of the Week!"
T is for "time for some new Spoils of the Week!"
H is for "how soon will Spoils of the Week come back?"
E is for "every week I look forward to new Spoils."
(to be continued)