I admit I’ve neglected to write up a post about it, but I did get The Power and the Honor Foundation‘s excellent Volume One: The Art of Masters of the Universe Toy Design. It’s everything the Mattel art bookÂ should have been (for the same price). Anyway, the book includes an early concept sketch of Spikor. He’s similar to the final version except the porcupine aspect is played up more – he’s brown and has a more animalistic face. Why Mattel decided to make him purple in the end is beyond me, but I now find it part of what makes the character endearing.
I had the vintage Spikor as a kid. He appealed to me because of his color scheme (I like purple), the fun rubbery spikes, and the odd extendable trident feature. Like Whiplash and Leech, Spikor survived (or post-dated) the day that I gave away many of my He-Man figures to a cousin in Florida. He eventually became a generic monster foe to the likes of the Ninja Turtles.
Spikor was due for a Millennium Staction, but the line ended before it could be made – it existed nowhere outside of a sketch on one of the Millennium MOTU DVDs. You just know it would have been wild. The Classics Spikor, on the other hand, skews very close to the vintage figure. Probably a little too close, even for a fan like me – but I’m getting ahead of myself.
Design & Sculpt: Like most of the more recent MOTU Classics, Spikor’s sculpt hews very closely to the vintage design.
The torso is covered by a pliable plastic armor piece with rubbery spikes. The head sculpt is a Classics-ized version of the vintage one, i.e., more detail but basically the same head. There’s just not a whole lot to discuss here; this is a fairly by-the-numbers update.
Plastic & Paint: There’s a bit more to talk about here.Â First off, it appears Spikor’s arms and legs and molded in black plastic and then painted light purple. This is bizarre. The initial thought that came to me was that he was produced at the same time as Horde PrimeÂ and it was cheaper to mold his limbs in black and then paint them than to have a separate mold run in purple. Unfortunately, this means that whenever and wherever the paint is scratched or flakes, black plastic is exposed.
On the other hand, this does make Spikor look a bit less toy-like than if he’d been molded in purple.
Articulation is standard.
Accessories: Spikor comes with a short trident, a longer “extended” trident, a “hilt” for the trident, an alternate left hand, and an orange mace.
The mace has a nice sculpt, but it’s molded in an incredibly soft orange plastic and will sag like Wonderboy at the end of The Natural.* Mattel’s parsimony strikes again.
The other parts are more interesting. They all have plugs, which means you can plug the trident directly into Spikor’s hand or plug the orange part in and then the trident, as it looked on the vintage figure. The alternate left hand allows you to arrange Spikor as he looked on the 1980s cartoon.
It’s cool they gave us the short and long tridents to mimic the vintage action feature. We’ll see this again next month with Mekaneck.
Quality Control: There’s the aforementioned issue with the purple-paint-over-black-plastic, but aside from that, no problems.
Overall: I loved the vintage Spikor, but for some reason this figure leaves me a little cold. I really can’t put my finger on it. Though I realize this may come off as part of a general souring on MOTUC on my part, I don’t think that’s really what bothers me here. I think this figure just needed some sort of extra oomph…maybe longer spikes, or a more stylized trident, or larger spines on the back…something. Even Webstor got a backpack and extra arms. But I guess these are the trade-offs for declining subscription numbers.
Where to Buy:
*The book, not the movie. And not literally, obviously. As an aside, the book is incredibly depressing. I should know, I had to read and re-read it for weeks to write the SparknoteÂ (that was over ten years ago; they’ve probably rewritten it by now, so I’m not cited as the author). But man, was that a painful experience. Movie’s great though.
I agree that MOTUC Spikor is a very straight forward translation of the original figure, but I really don't think it has anything to do with declining subscriptions. The fact is, is that the only real reference Mattel and the Horsemen had for Spikor was the cartoon and original toy. If he had made it into the 200X series I'm sure he would have come with more. The only reason Webstor came with extra arms, or that Fisto came with a belt, sword and extra head, is to recreate the 200X versions.
It does scare me a little that he was painted purple instead of molded that way, mostly because it make me wonder if that is what Mattel is doing for future figures. But I think Spikor is definitely a solid figure and definitely takes hold of that nostalgia factor that is so important to the line. That being said, I think he deserves at least a 3 out of 5 if not 3 1/2 and I have to wonder if your "souring" attitude towards the line hasn't played a bigger role in your review than you think, and how big a part it will play from here on out.
Bear in mind that I try not to grade these ravens on a curve. A 2.5 out of 5 is an "average" figure, so it's not really a "negative" rating.
You could argue the trident parts and extra hand were a bit above and beyond the call of duty for the figure, but I felt they were counterbalanced by the purple-over-black paint and the rubbery mace. So, I gave him an average score.
What do people think of the photos in this review? I spent an hour trying to get a better light set-up than I have in the past, yet I think they basically turned out exactly the same as usual…
I just pulled up your Moss Man review for the sake of comparison (I chose him 'cause mine will be arriving in the mail this week; he'll be my first male MOTUC figure!), and the difference is night and day; Moss Man is overexposed, whereas Spikor's photos all boast a kind of hyper-clarity. They're just flawless enough that most people will probably take them for granted.
The photos look great to me. I'm very happy with Spikor, I would give him a score of 4/5 at least. One of the best figures of the year.
The lighting is very good, though I would need to compare it with something else in a similar color scheme. It's definitely better than Moss Man (as said above), and is clearer than the more-recent Slush Head, but overall is very similar.
This Spikor looks amazing. Honestly, since he's out I wouldn't have minded if MOTUC died. I have all of the characters I want except for Two-Bad, and I can live without him. If this was the last MOTUC I ever bought, I'd be content.
I still haven't cracked this guy open!
The Fun has been dou
Am I the only one who thinks that the second Trident is a waste of plastic? They couldn't have made an extension to pop in the short trident without having to sculpt an entirely new trident
I would guess it was because it would be hard to work a durable plug into the thin end of the trident shaft.
I never cared for the vintage figure, and as a consequence I don't care for this one, but man, I wish the staction had been produced.