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Masters of the Universe
by yo go re

The introduction of the Evil Horde meant that the world of Eternia got a whole slew of impressive new villains, the likes of which had never been seen before.

Er, mostly.

Grizzlor An Eternian urban legend, the grizzlor is a hairy beast that stalks the night. Everyone thought he was just a story told to children, until he showed up at Hordak's side. A savage killing machine, Grizzlor is nearly mindless, driven forward by Hordak's evil will. His life is bound to the Evil Horde by the symbol on his chest - but even if he was set free, no one knows what this mighty beast would do.

Grizzlor was basically Hordak's Beast Man. Without the obvious mental impairment, of course. He's the evil boss's main muscle, he's covered in fur and he wears completely useless bits of clothing. Wow, creative! The implication is that there's a whole race of these fur balls running around somewhere, and that Grizzlor is the only one that's been captured and enslaved.

It's hard to judge the original Grizzlor, because he was covered in thick brown fur. Odds are he had a generic re-used body underneath it, though. His arms and legs were exposed, and he wore little black booties. The Horsemen have kept all that, but still managed to make a cool-looking figure. All the major details are the same: real fur body, bare arms and legs, cutsey little boots, all that; it's just that they're all better now.

loins The figure's arms and legs are sculpted to look furry, so he looks less like a guy in a fur coat. His boots buckle up the sides, and have a Horde insignia on the front. The Horde insignia on his chest has been shrunken down to a less ridiculous size, so more of his yellow harness is visible. He's wearing a loin cloth that seems to have trophies from past kills: bones and a small skull of some creature he probably devoured while wandering around. He's got a few studded bands on his left arm, and a fingerless black glove on his right hand.

Since this is a specialty market statue rather than a mass-market toy, the detail is above what we normally expect from the Four Horsemen. There's no need to worry about finding the cheapest plastic, no concerns about the mold losing shape as the factory pounds out lot after lot of identical torsos, any of that. You can see the individual assemblies of the buckles on his boots, the tiny face on the Horde symbol on his glove, and the cracked leather of his man-skirt. The fur is actually sculpted like fur, overlapping curling around Grizzlor's muscles, rather than just being a lot of small lines all over the place.

Grizzlor looks more like an animal, now - looks like your great aunt rather than the completely upright posture of the original, he's hunched over, with his head coming straight out from his shoulders instead of resting above them. His lower jaw sticks out slightly, exposing a lower fang on each side of his mouth. His tiny nose sits right inbetween his eyes, and his whole face is flattened. He's wearing a yellow band around his face (to hide the transition from sculpture to fake fur), but you glance at him and you know this isn't a human. It's barely even a humanoid. He looks like a sasquatch or something.

daaaaaamn! Proving that this guy is more than brute strength and stupid clothes, his yellow harness leads to a wooden backpack thing, that's positively packed with weapons. He's got a sword, a machette, an axe and a dagger, as well as six crossbow bolts. The gear is all detailed nicely, and fits in the pack perfectly. Two of the bolts hang off the back precariously, but once you figure out how they go, they stay fine. Grizzlor can hold any of his weapons in either hand, though his left is designed to hold his crossbow. The crossbow is the same basic design as Hordak's, which makes sense (since all the original Evil Horde figures had the same weapon in different colors), but it's got a few different details: the arms sweep back instead of forward, and the body is designed to look like wood. If this was a real toy, and could fire, the arsenal on his back would be really great, but since the crossbow bolt is permanently molded into place, you'll just have to pretend.

fire! There's no articulation for Grizzlor, because NECA can only make statues, not action figures. The paint apps are all perfect, though - his "skin" is now the same color as his fur, rather than the huge difference the original figure showed. The detailing on his belt, in particular, is clean. His little white fangs are nice and tight, as are the buckles on his boots. There are a couple of apps on each of his weapons, too, so overall, this beast looks really nice.

Horde base Each of the Masters of the Universe figure-scale statues comes with a hexagonal display base. Actually, they all come with the same display base: a generic technological thing that's color-coded to the character's allegience. The Evil Horde poses on a maroon base - the same general color as Hordak's symbol. Neat!

Grizzlor probably wasn't high on anybody's "must update" list, and the first shots of the prototype didn't inspire a lot of excitement. To tell the truth, he's not even all that impressive when you see him in the package. But open it up, play around with him and those weapons, and he'll grow on you. If you're into these mini statues, Grizzlor's a good addition to your collection.

What body is under all that fur? Tell us on our message board, The Loafing Lounge.


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