Hey guys, I want to thank all of you – everybody who corrected my flubs, everyone who posted and brought the conversation, all you readers, and Mr. Poe Ghostal for giving me this awesome opportunity! Remember to check out my regular column at Nerditis – Life In Plastic runs on Mondays, Wednesday, and Fridays. Okay, self-shilling is over.
Mattel’s showing this week was going to be huge, no matter what. With the company’s recent horrible financial fortunes, we have to wonder just what the future holds for these low-print run, low-profit margin fan-pandering lines like DC universe or Masters of the Universe Classics. And we know that MOTUC is nearing the natural end of its lifespan, and the next two years have been redesigned to give it a grand finale (even if it survives past 2015, the idea is to wrap up all the vintage heavy-hitters by then). So their showing this year is hugely important, and I’ll spend more time on it than DC. But let’s talk Mattel at the Con…
I am utterly surprised that Club Infinite Earths is continuing. Good for them! The figure lineup seems to be good, especially with the two Doomsdays, but I can’t really say much more than that. Someone else will have to enlighten me if there are any majorly-demanded figures coming up, please. But overall, the quality looks fine.
Masters of the Universe Classics
And here’s the biggie. This year and next year are make-or-break conventions for He-Man. Last year was apparently the first time that they really feared not making the sub quota, and this year looks rough, too. So, of the reveals…
Two-Bad – Great idea, excellent execution. This guy is one of the few real biggies left in the line, as even peopel who missed MOTU when they were kids remember his crazy, crazy toy! Glad to see it, and glad to see that his arms are normal.
Horde Troopers – I can’t say I’m surprised to see them (everybody knew it), but they look fine. A lot like the vintage toys, not so much like their cartoon counterparts, and I can kind of hear the oncoming firestorm already. But people will buy them.
Geldor – Also not a surprise, Geldor does nothing to me, but apparently a lot of people love this Mr. T knockoff, so he’s good news.
Sky Sled – Holy wow, just as Mattel has been saying “No more vehicles” because the Windraider flopped… WHAM! And with the last box concept guy, too. If this succeeds, then we might get at the rest of the Battle Ram someday, too!
Sea Hawk – Not a surprise at all, but looks decent. I think he’s too bulked up, but it can’t be helped.
StrongOr/Strong-Arm - Rounding out the Filmation sub is somebody else I do not recognize, but he seems to have a lot of nostalgia value. That’s a great thing, and the response is positive, if not terribly loud.
Glimmer – The Great Rebellion lacks members at the moment, and after the Star Sisters, you’d be forgiven for assuming that they were done. But now we’re getting Castaspella AND Glimmer! And Glimmer is one of the most important She-Ra characters, so this is another huge plus.
Hydron - Speaking of important characters, Hydron is another faction leader we’ve needed. Even if you don’t like the New Adventures of He-Man, it’s good to have him here. I wonder if we’ll ever get Flogg or NA Skeletor.
Nephthu – This Egyptian guy looks kind of bland and turned people off, but his episode was awesome, and he’s got nostalgia value (he was even featured on X-Entertainment a while back). I predict that people will warm to him eventually, just not right now.
Lord Dactys - Aside from a few spare heads and that lion dude, MOTUC has stayed pretty far away from the Millennium cartoon. Making this guy is a pretty big leap on their part, but you know what? he’s been highly-demanded, and I think he cam eout looking cool. Hopefully he won’t be forgettable filler because of his source and lack of nostalgia factor.
The Unnamed One – I have nothing to say until we see this guy, but I assume that the hype for his appearance will be huge, like with Horde prime’s head. Hopefully he won’t be painted flat red, though!
Modulok – Now, this is amazing. Mattel has said time and time again that they couldn’t make this guy because of cost and logistical issues, but here he is. Maybe he’ll end up fragile and have QC problems, and maybe not, but wow. They had the guts to make Modulok!
Standor – Standor is a one-off joke character meant for Stan Lee’s personal convention. I think he’s hilarious, but there is a metric ton of hate for him right now. So this might not bode well.
Goat-Man – The travelling Con exclusive is a character who isn’t core, but people have wanted. And he looks a lot more badass than Strobo, too – honestly, this is another good move!
Scorpia – Not 100% confirmed, but come on, who else’s tail is that? Scorpia isn’t just heavily-requested, I think that there will be riots when she goes up for sale. Very good move, Mattel. Well-played.
Plundor – Sweet Holy Moses. Seriously. I… I can’t… this… not the best…just… wow. Let’s move on.
Castle Grayskull - Perhaps no part of the MOTUC line has caused more controversy, more fights, more broken friendships, and more attempted lawsuits than Castle Grayskull. Ever since the budget cuts started, it’s been hell. And now that we’re seeing an ALMOST-final version… well, I’m amazed at the positivity. Sure, it looks awesome and better than the previous versions, but I didn’t expect the internet to change its mind and like this playset now. Maybe it won’t be a complete bust. Maybe.
So, there you have it! My thoughts on Mattel’s crucial, earth-shattering performance this week – they had a few missteps (PLUNDOR?!?!?!?!!), but overall it seems that they understood how much they needed to bring their A-Game, and so they did. Only time will tell if these figures live up to their prototypes, but they’ve gotten to a good start this year. If they can keep it up, then MOTUC will survive long enough to “finish” the important figures.