Man-At-Arms (Battle Ram Version)…SpartanNerd Unboxing and Review

Mattel has given us several versions of Man-At-Arms over the eight years of the line.  The Battle Ram came with one more different version.  How does this version stand up?  Keep reading!

You can see how I unboxed Man-At-Arms if you follow this link.    You can also see the review of the Battle Ram vehicle, and follow the links on that page to all sorts of cool NerdTainment.  To me, this Man-At-Arms is essentially a freeby!

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So here is Man-At-Arms, right out of the package.  Notice that this version has a silver mace, prominently featured.  He has Filmation-inspired shin guards.  He is the same green color, and has practically the same armor as the original Man-At-Arms release.  This time he has double arm-guards, and a helmetless head that features a prominent ponytail.

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The backside features an incredibly well sculpted backpack, which has storage clips for weapons.  In the previous version, Man-At-Arms could have He-Man’s techno-sword attached here.  This time we get to install a gun and the classic mace.From this rear-facing angle, we can see how well sculpted the armor pieces are.

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If you read my review of Rio Blast, then you heard my story of who I always thought he was Man-at-Arms in disguise.  See the resemblance?  Now for a head-swap.

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I knew I was onto something!

Man-At_arms comes with the aforementioned silver mace, the classic mace, and this silver pistol.  Note that the silver mace will not fit on the the clips of Man-At-Arms back.

Why was that even included?  It seems we’ve seen that mace several times in different colors.  So it gets the silver treatment.  Big WHOOP.

It would have been nice to have more paint hits on the classic mace.  Or maybe including that 200x gun in a different color.  (How about silver.  That would have been cool!)

But oh-well.  I don’t dislike the silver mace.  I just think its weird considering the main vintage weapon associated with Duncan is the orange mace.  And so that means he came with two maces.

He looks cool with two guns…not two maces.

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The point of this Man-At-Arms is that now you get maximum options for displaying the figure.  You can take this head and the 200x gun and armor and make the ultimate 200x Man-At-Arms.  (I don’t own the Snake Man At Arms…I don’t own the 200x the gun.  OK.  I actually don’t own either…the SpartanTeen owns the gun and the original Man-At-Arms release!)

You can take the Mustached head and put on the Battle Ram version and make a filmation Duncan.  (Sorry.  I can’t find the mustached head.  The SpartanTeen lost it!)

Here is a crack at the 200x version, using the Battle Ram body.

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Man-At-Arms inclusion with the Battle Ram was a great choice.  I personally needed my own Man-Arms to help me complete the classic team of He-Man, Teela, Man-At-Arms, Orko, and Ram Man (coming from Super7 eventually!)

The only thing stupid about this figure is the silver mace.  It adds something to the figure.  It just isn’t that significant.  But I can’t take any points off for that.  MOC collectors might be annoyed that he is displayed holding that in the box, though.

So I rate the Battle Ram Man-At-Arms 5/5.  This is Mattel’s final Man-At-Arms for the Masters of the Universe Classics line.  They used this opportunity to reward long-time collectors, and help appease those annoyed by Snake Man-At-Arms.  This version allows the widest range of display options, and pulls it together nicely.

For me, it gives me my own personal Man-At-Arms to help me complete my collection of essential good guys.

Do you agree with the SpartanNerd’s rating of 5/5?  Let me know in the comments!

 

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SpartanNerd Unboxing and Review…Masters of the Universe Classics Evilseed

When Evilseed went on sale, I decided I would get him, only to be held off by circumstances.  I thought I would have to catch him on Cyber Monday, maybe.  But he remained on sale…perhaps he didn’t sell out?  Regardless, I ordered mine, and over a week later he arrived in this mailer.

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I quickly opened it, to reveal the sealed packaging.

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The front of the box has a nice window that has Evilseed on display.  You can clearly see his accessories…he has the tag line of “Evil Master of Plants.”  And that’s about it.  Just from seeing here…he is quite incredible looking, if you are a MIC collector.  But that’s not me.

I flipped the box over, and check it out!  For the first time, I own all of the characters on the back of the box!

Evilseed gets a new “real name” and bio, photographed here for you, oh Hub City Geeks.  But I’m just throwing away the package.  Notably, the bio says that Moss Man created Evilseed.  A good story.  But I prefer the Mike Young version that this figure is based on.

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Removing Evilseed from the package isn’t difficult.  He did have some rubber bands, and the vine-whip accessory had to be wrangled out of the blister.  But other than that, it was all good.  Notably, there was no “smell” associated with this figure.  (If you will recall, Moss Man” had a very strong pine scent.)

Here he is in the first pose I made for him.

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Evilseed has a terrific sculpt.  When I first saw this revealed, I knew I had to get one to go with my Moss Man.  The Four Horsemen hit a homerun every time!  Check out all of the little scaly looking parts.  Check out the thorns and vines.  I went back and watched “Orko’s Garden,” “Council of Evil” part 1 & 2, and “The Last Stand” today to check my facts.  I have ready other reviews, and there is some criticism of this version being too bulked up.  In the MYP cartoon, his IS skinner at the torso and waist, but the entire upper body looks almost perfect.  The thicker torso here is welcome, if you ask me.  While they could have used some amalgamation of Lizard Man’s parts, I think this was the way to go.  It doesn’t look wrong at all.  Maybe he’s been working out?

Evilseed has that terrific sculpt, and also the standard articulation that all of the other MOTUC figures have.  Rocker joint ankles, hinged knees, ball jointed shoulders, waist twist, ab crunch, ball jointed shoulders, bicep swivels, hinged elbows, a swivel wrist, and a ball jointed head that can rotate freely and be swapped out.

The cool new addition to the articulation is the way the vines look on the legs.  They are made of a more rubbery material, and are a continuation of the waist piece.  These come down and loop around the knees, which means Evilseed has both loose vines on his knees and articulation there!

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How about this face!  If he had a mother….

For real, this is one of the most evil faces ever sculpted for MOTUC.  Evilseed’s overall green color is a stark and EVIL contrast to this sinister eyes and mouth, which are bright red in color.  This is the only red on the figure…everyghing else is green, black, or brown.  This highlights the evil human nature of the figure, and even makes him appear alien.  Where his hair should be, we have this bunch of creepy looking vines/grass/seaweed.

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The torso is evidently just the same sort of Torso that He-Man or most of the others have.  But this time there is non-removable armor sculpted with he specific viney details demanded of Evilseed.  There is a very striking collar that comes up beside his head on both sides, giving him a plant/vampire look.  You can see the vine details on his back, and also two mysterious green thorns in the middle of his back.

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One of Evilseed’s two accessories is “The Scepter of Power.”  My research tells me that this Filmation artifact was in the episode, “The Magic Falls.”  I don’t personally own this episode on DVD.  I started to watch it on YouTube, when I discovered that all of those videos appear to be playing at too fast a clip, giving a chipmunk effect to most of the music and voices.  It was unbearable to me.  And As a music teacher, the difference in key created by the effect was just too jarring. Anyways, Evilseed looks really good with the Scepter of Power.  It is supposed to be for King Randor, but since I am not a fan of “Throne Room Randor” and, nor the Burger King version of the regular Randor, I decided to settle on letting Prince Adam hold it.  (He would inherit it anyway, right?)

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Not bad at all.

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The other accessory is this vine-whip creature.  You can position it almost anywhere on his body.  I think I might try and order more of these!  I think he should have come with more of them.  Watching the MYP version made me realize how ridiculous and over-exaggerated the vines that Evilseed controlled were.  But it worked really well in that cartoon.  Evilseed even made T-Rex sorts of plants, and hydra plants also.  He also would use them to transport around on…Mattel could have given us an interchanging waist so we could display him as seen transporting around on a “trunk” of vines!

In getting this figure, one of my aims was display him in battle with Moss Man.  Here is my first attempt!

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Even with the “plant god” head on, Moss Man appears to be from a different line entirely.  Both are green, but the flocking on Moss Man blurs his details.

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Evilseed looks pretty good with Moss Man’s weapon, but the seed-bag armor with knife doesn’t fit properly across Evilseed because of the collar piece of the armor.  It fits loosely around his waist, which is something I do with Moss Man sometimes.

It might be better to use it to imprison him…

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Heheh…looks like Orko is going to set him free…

Evilseed was a part of Skeletor’s Council of Evil…We can compare Evilseed to Count Marzo and Skeletor by reenacting a scene from the cartoon.

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SpartanNerd Rating of Masters of the Universe Classics Evilseed.

Evilseed has terrific sculpting.  He is highly articulated, even specifically for his figure.  (With the vines around his knees.)  His paint looks good, and there was no “pee plastic” smell like I detected from King Hsss and Snake Armor He-Man.  He comes with two accessories…the only complaint I can level is I wish we had MORE vines.  But this can be easily done.

So I give MOTUC Evilseed a 5/5!  I am not the least bit disappointed in this figure.  Every detail matches my specifications!  There are some people who complain that this isn’t Filmation’s “turnip head” version.  But I don’t even like that version…it was even a reason I might not subscribe to that little add-on sub.  This 200x version looks evil, not goofy.  He is ready for battle…ready to kick some plants!

The SpartanNerd gives Masters of the Universe Classics Evilseed a 5/5.  Do you agree or disagree?  Let me know in the comments!

SpartanNerd… Thoughts on Toyfair Reveals

Toyfair usually has a few things that catch my eye.  This year though, I think is going to get me to purchasing.

To start with, there is a new MattyCollector Subscription being offered…a “200x Masters of the Universe Classics” line.  (Not sure the official name.Oh yeah.  Club 200x.)  I think I am going to subscribe.  I skipped on the Anniversary Line, and the Filiation line, AND the minis line.  But considering the figures planned, I am game.  Revealed so far is Calix (he needs a red shirt), Ceratus, and EvilSeed.  I speculate that we will get Old Man Marzo, a Skeleton Warrior, and Stratos’ sister or similar.  There is also a head pack coming, with the 200x head for Snout Spout (AWESOME!), Buzz Off’s 200x head (ALSO AWESOME!)  I figure we might get 200x Prince Adam in the main Classics line, as this subscription specifically says that the characters will be never-before-released.

I’m so excited I went ahead and purchased the Snake Armor He-Man and 200x King Hsss two pack today…(review coming as soon as it arrives!)

(I could care less about Peek-a-Blue and Angela.  Angela could be much more awesome.  Mara is cool though, maybe the best New Adventures side character so far.)

SpartanNerd Vintage Toy Review…”Masters of the Universe Wolf Armor He-man and Snake Armor Skeletor”

This is one of the longest titles I’ve typed on this blog!

Today you get the final pictures taken with my iPhone 4s.  Good riddance, after seeing how good the iPhone 6 camera is!  (I can hear Skeletor from the MYP cartoon saying “Good Riddance!”

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This item was originally meant to be a gift set.  You are getting two figures, both with an action accessory, and a VHS tape. (GASP)

The front of the box is a nice window where you can see the figures and the video inside.

I love the SpartanWife…If it weren’t for her, I probably never would have got these!

Here’s the back…

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Everything all over this packaging is in three languages.  English, Spanish (or Italian?) and French.

Probably Spanish, aimed at the Mexican market.  Sorry Europeans.  (Seriously.  There are mega fans in Europe.  Especially Italy and Germany.)

The back of the package gives you instructions, and also shows off some other figures and vehicles from 200x.

I do miss the 200x show!

On with the review.  This packaging is just landing in the trash.  I’m not sure this could have counted as Mint On Card anyways.  The box has had some abuse.

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Here is everything assembled, for your photography pleasure.  The video is going to stay in cellophane.  I believe I will display it with my 1987 movie VHS tape.  Because neither is EVER going back into a VCR to be eaten.  That’s why.  And besides, I have “The Courage of Adam” on DVD.

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Here are the accessories.  I activated the action feature of both shields this time.  I prefer to display them like this.  Skeletor’s activates by press of a button.  You reset it by pushing that skull back up, and then the blades retract.  He-Man’s works by turning that wolf head.  His isn’t spring loaded, unfortunately.  But it looks way cooler with the blades out.

This is the first He-Man I’ve ever owned that didn’t come with a sword!

Also notable, He-Man’s helmet is removable…Skeletor’s is not.

He-Man has a wolf claw weapon.  And I’m not sure WHAT Skeletor’s weapon is.  A gun?  A sword?  I tend to think those silver pieces are meant to be long retractable tentacles.  So more of a gun.  But then again, it could be that the two silver pieces are meant to mirror Skeletor’s double sword.  I just don’t know.

As far as I know, there is no extant fiction for either character…

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Here’s Skeletor.  His shield is really heavy.  200x Skeletor tends to be sort of hunchbacked as it is.  But in order to have him stand and hold the shield, you have to bend him backwards, pretty severely.

The figure has a snake head on top of his helmet.  I thought this must be a button for an action feature.  Nope.  Maybe the Horsemen intended it to be so?  The armor is removable, but it looks to be two pieces.  I don’t feel the urge to take it off…you can’t remove his helmet, so you would have a shirtless Skeletor with a snake hat.  And what if I have trouble getting that armor back on?

I have to add that the snake hat is glued to the hooded head that was on the original, non-variant version.  Mattel really cut corners on this figure.  And I don’t necessarily appreciate it.  I do think these are cool designs.  I might not understand them.  But stuff like the mess that is on Skeletor’s head is pretty infuriating.  Why isn’t that removable.  Or at least, not GLUED TO HIS HOOD.

Skeletor is fine below the waist.  His loin cloth is elaborate.  His toes look ever creepy.  To bad he didn’t have claws on his feet, as he had in the cartoon and the Vintage figure from the 1980s.  I wish they at least painted the nails black as a compromise.

Skeletor also doesn’t have the torso punch.  How did that get left out.

I can make a comparison this time.  We have what I believe to be Battle Armor/sound Skeletor from the 200x line.  He has a spring loaded waist twist.  And you can remove his hood.  I’m just saying.

Onto Wolf Armor He-Man.

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He-man is superior to Skeletor in every way.  He has the same problem as Skeletor in that his shield is too heavy for him to stand and hold it as usual.  I am not necessarily a fan of the way the He-Man holds his shields in 200x.  Shields should strap to the arm.  Not be held in hand.  But this is an overall style criticism.  He-man’s waist twist works great.  His armor is removable.  I generally have a hard time standing 200x He-Man.  His legs are sculpted in an odd way.

He-Man’s armor is a nice gold color.  His furry shorts come complete with the little pouch that hangs from his belt.

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I tried out the sword from the 200x Castle Grayskull playset.  This sword has good symmetry with the shield, matching the other shiny silver pieces.

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Here’s Skeletor with the other 200x villains in my collection.  Too bad we can’t see Two-Bad’s faces.  (get it.  “Two Bad.”

SpartanNerd’s Rating

Here goes.  Whhhhhh…..(sigh)

What these figures ARE is kind of a mystery.  Snake Armor Skeletor kind of makes sense.  Skeletor is the enemy of the Snake Men.  But we never saw him in the cartoon wearing this.  On the other hand, He-Man was decked out especially for the Snake Men.  But what was Wolf Armor He-Man?  There were no wolf enemies.  I guess this was just a variant like the “Jungle Attack He-Man” or “Smash Blade He-Man.”

Skeletor’s figure has a very compromised feel to it.  Like they intended for it to be more than it is.  But had to cut corners.  So there is no action feature.  And the helmet is not removable.  And they didn’t bother with a new head sculpt…hence the hood is still there under the helmet.

Add to these problems the fact that the figures can’t stand properly because of the weight of the shields, and the fact that He-Man doesn’t come with a sword.  And the score is pretty low.

But I don’t dislike these figures.  They are fun!  I think the shields’ action features are cool.  Especially Skeletor’s with the spring loaded blades.  He-Man’s shield, with the blades sticking out around it is especially cool looking.

I rate 200x Wolf Armor He-Man at 3/5.  His sculpt is great.  He has a cool shield.  It is a nice variant.  He looks cool on the shelf.  With the downside of not coming with a sword, or being able to stand holding the shield without being contorted.

I rate 200x Snake Armor Skeletor as 2/5.  He has a compromised feel.  Unremovable Helmet.  Dubious removable armor.  A strange weapon.  And can’t stand naturally holding the shield.  On the other hand, the action feature on the shield is fun, and the overall look of the figure is nice.

I’m not even going to bother rating the tape.

Because these figures look so cool on the shelf, and that is their main function, I am going to rate them probationally 3/5 as a set.

That’s right.  The SpartanNerd rates the dubiously named:

200x Masters of the Universe Wolf Armor He-Man and Snake Armor Skeletor Gift Set *

3/5.

Do you agree?  Let me know in the comments!

*I added the colon because it is supposed to be funny.

SpartanNerd Unboxing and Review…Masters of the Universe Classics Moss Man

I took a trip to the Barnyard Fleamarket in Greer, SC…

Last time I went I got Sir Lazer Lot (number 2)…200x Beast Man and 200x Two Bad.  And I got all that goodness for around $60.  The guy who sells them is nice, and knowledgeable.  You should check it out, especially if you are a cherry picker like me.

 

This time I got MOTUC Moss Man and MOTUC Buzz Off!  And I came in at $50!  (Another reason to cherry pick, people!)

Keep reading for pictures and a review.

Here is Moss Man in the same old box everyone else in MOTUC comes in.  Note that the second head wasn't carded straight.

Here is Moss Man in the same old box everyone else in MOTUC comes in. Note that the second head wasn’t carded straight.  Also note.  It is marked $35.  But I got him for $20. The vendor was ready to move him!

 

The back shows off some other guys.  Just like in the good old days...Except back then there was no Green Goddess or King Grayskull...Moss Man has a particularly annoying real name.  KREANN'OT N'HOROSH.  It would be OK, but they insist on using it in the DC comics for some reason.

The back shows off some other guys. Just like in the good old days…Except back then there was no Green Goddess or King Grayskull…Moss Man has a particularly annoying real name. KREANN’OT N’HOROSH. It would be OK, but they insist on using it in the DC comics for some reason.

Now let’s open this bad boy up….

Something here I can only describe, but not photograph.  WOW THERE IS A PINE-SOL SCENT TO THIS GUY!

Seriously.  The SpartanWife described it as Eucalyptus.  Maybe.  I know.  Vicks Vapo-Rub.

I don’t remember the vintage Moss Man having that smell.  Maybe he did.  My vintage one has lost its scent over the years, at least.

Moss Man is a repaint and flock of Beast Man.  I don’t have Beast Man for a comparison…  But this is how it was in the 1980’s, and they have honored that in MOTUC.

The thing that annoys me most about this figure is OH SO APPARENT that you really can’t ignore it.  I hate to start off a review with something bad to say.  But his eyes are looking off to the left.  This gives him a real PSYCHO ALL THE TIME feeling of unsettlingness.  From now on I am going to refer to this head as the Beserker Head.

Moss Man comes with a strap to hold a pouch of something…maybe seeds?  And this knife.  My first instinct, with the psycho eyes and all, was to put the knife in his hand as if he is about to stab someone!

 

Looks like Moss Man is a Lefty.  Just like Spikor!  His weapon is really detailed.  Mattel could have gotten away with just throwing in another mace that was already sculpted.  But this one looks very fitting for Moss Man!

Moss Man comes with a second head.  This is supposed to be the 200x head.  It is much calmer and at peace.  I think of this as a god head.  He is described as a “god of nature” in his bio.

Hmmm….He would be a green hairy smelly Beast Man if he had his armor…HE DOES!  This armor came in the Weapons Pack!

Now for some pictures of KREANN’OT N’HOROSH in action!

 

Orko says “This book says find what you need in a cave north of the Mystic Mountains.”

 

“Hello there. You brought me a gift?”

Obsidian. How nice!  Just what I needed, I think…

(I picked up the rocks at the flea market too!)

A Comparison Photo!  This time I have my original Moss Man from the childhood days of yore.  He is looking worse for wear.  He is balder, and has a lot of strange fuzzes attached to his flocking.  But you can see that Mattel did a pretty good job of updating Moss Man.  I am particularly fond of the fingers and toes on the new one.  I like the pouch and knife.  I like the other weapon.  And I appreciate the stoic stare of the other head.

 

So what is my rating here?  Moss Man definitely scores nostalgia points with the SpartanNerd.  I remember playing with the same figure in the photo above in ACTUAL MOSS in my yard.  (That probably wasn’t too safe, in hindsight.)

I am going to give him a 4/5 all on Nostalgia.  He is very well translated into the modern style.  I don’t like the crazed look in his vintage head’s eyes, though.  So that is a mark off.

A lot of other people before me complain about him not being flocked around the joints and stuff.  Those people just like to complain.  He looks fine.  Maybe a little mangy.  But it isn’t too distracting.  And what was all that nonsense about flocked vs. unflocked ears?  I don’t even care.  I am just glad to have an awesome updated Moss Man.

I give Moss Man a 4/5.  What is your rating?  Let me know!  Subscribe to SpartanNerd.com and check in often!

 

Battle for the Obsidian!

 

SpartanNerd Unboxing and Review….VINTAGE ALERT! 200x Beast Man.

I am going to call this new variety of column VINTAGE ALERT.

Some people might argue that 200x Masters of the Universe toys are not vintage.  But they are approaching fifteen years old, people!  They ARE NOT fresh and new.

From now on, when I get to review a vintage toy, I am going to all-caps VINTAGE ALERT!

Because it’s my blog.  That’s how I roll!

I am going to start with the package.

The card evokes the feeling of nostalgia for the 1980’s line.  Beast Man is clearly visible in the package.  The package is covered in text as well, in english and two other languages.

Here is the back of the package.  This packaging is familiar to me because
I have the rare variant “cross-harness” He-Man MOC hanging in my office!

I have only owned a few 200x figures before.  My brother Hoagie Boagie had 200x as HIS He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.  I will say that I enjoy the Mike Young Productions cartoon quite a bit.  And I am glad to see the Four Horsemen’t work on these figures as well.  So there are a few loose He-man and Skeletor figures floating around.  But no other characters.

On with the review.

Here is Beast Man out of the package.  Notice his arms and legs.  This figure is NOT super-articulated.  He has two accessories.  The whip and his armor.  The armor fits on him loosely, and is made of the same rubber as the whip.  The whip is quite flexible, and really “whips” good with the action feature.

On the back, you can see a lever sticking out.  When you press this lever,
it causes his arms to move simultaneously.  So he can crack that whip!  Action features like this
were what Mattel thought kids wanted.

Beast Man can control animals, right?

He is famous for conjuring Griffons to help the baddies make an escape.  Here he is riding and whipping my griffin!  He doesn’t fit on the saddle great, but his loin cloth is soft enough to position right.

Beast Man seems to be a good scale to ride on the Griffin, and that pleased me very much!  So how does he look next to Skeletor?


Skeletor seems to stand about a half-head taller than Beast Man.  BUT, Beast Man is hunched over a little.  Which is fitting for the character in relation to Skeletor.



So what’s my rating?  I am going to take into account that super-articulated figures weren’t the big thing necessarily at the time these were produced.  (200x He-Man figs were marketed at kids more than adults.)  I am going to take into account that he looks pretty good with the MOTUC characters.  The same sculptors, after all!  I am also pleased that he fits on the griffin, and looks fantastic.  (If you are a regular reader, you know I wanted Vikor to ride it, but his loincloth was too stiff.)  I kind of wish the spikes on his arms and knees were removable, but I don’t think it is necessary enough to take off a point, considering the time it was released.

So, my rating is 5/5!  He serves the grand purpose of making my bad guys seem to have more of a team.  I will probably not have a MOTUC Beast Man any time soon.  What do you think?  Leave a comment!