Scott Neitlich, a.k.a. “ToyGuru” of Mattel was posting quite a bit on the Mattycollector forums last night.
First up is this new “director’s commentary” on the Masters of the Universe Classics line, starting with King Grayskull. This seems like a neat, fun idea. There’s no real new info here–most of this has been hashed out before in interviews and so forth–but I’ll be interested to see the discussions of later figures.
Next was a fairly extensive post about the ongoing MOTUC QC issues, starting with the Goddess and going straight through to the Wind Raider. I think there’s a bit too much emphasis on the idea that these errors occurred on “small percentages” of toys–something I’m not convinced is true, especially for Swift Wind. And the refrain of “human error” sounds like excuse-making. Just admit you screwed up and stop trying to minimize/trivialize the issue.
Small, neglected toy line or no, there’s no excuse in today’s competitive economy for treating your customers poorly and acting like returning a product for a replacement isn’t a huge pain in the ass, particularly when you’re dealing with misinformed and sometimes surly customer service.
Finally, Scott directly answered a question someone else asked about my Wind Raider:
But what about Poe Ghostal being told there were no replacement wind raiders? Was this a mistake by the customer service department? I don’t want to stir up a hornet’s nest, I’m just curious.
Yes, this is 100% incorrect info. We have CS stock available if you want to send back your incorrect WR for a replacement. If anyone knows POE please let him know to update his story.
Aside from not addressing the main issue–that Digital River’s CS department is apparently so misinformed they’re issuing refunds for items before they even get in touch with the customer–the main reason this bugs me is that Scott can easily contact me himself. I email him Q&As twice a month. I had a friendly, amicable chat with him at New York Comic Con. And he’s been quick to email me directly in the past to take down leaked photos. So this comment is just weird, and I’ll admit I’m a bit miffed he couldn’t take the time to send an email to me himself.
As for updating my story, I wrote that customer service informed me there were no replacement Wind Raiders and sent us a refund. I didn’t say I thought there were no more Wind Raiders, because that was obviously bullshit. I also didn’t think I should have to inform CS there are Wind Raiders, or have to take my case to the Escalation Dept. because Digital River can’t do the job it’s paid to do.
Dr. Mrs. Ghostal was able to find an intact Wind Raider on eBay. It had been opened, but came with all its parts and packaging, and in the end we paid $5 less than we did for the original Wind Raider, including shipping. In the end, all Mattel gets out of this debacle is a little bad PR and the defective Wind Raider I sent back to them.
I want to add that Dr. Mrs. Ghostal was initially much more angry about this whole thing than I was–mostly because I’ve resigned myself to this sort of crap. She hasn’t had to deal with it personally until now, and she got pretty annoyed with all of it. And that did get me mad, because while I’m used to this sort of abuse, I don’t like seeing my family have to take it, too.
The end result of all this? Right now it’s 50/50 whether I get the 2013 subscription. I may just be willing to pay $30-$40 apiece for Mekaneck, Ram-Man, Spikor or Eldor and skip the rest of the NA/POP/Filmation characters I have no attachment to.