Hot on the heels of our look at He-Man’s pal Grumpy Uncle Mossy (as I am now affectionately calling him), comes our turn with the most vile and trecherous Lyn in all of Eternia. This is not Good-Lyn, or even Neutral-Lyn – this is Evil-Lyn! When you have the word evil within a self-applied handle you are sending a message: no longer will I be constrained by an average, and not inherently evil name like Evelyn. No sirs and ma’ams, I have a chip on my shoulder and even if I have to join up with a band of freakish misfits and their bone-headed leader to get satisfaction, I will!
We are getting a very well-established stable of Evil Warriors already early on in this line and the carverns of Snake Mountain are starting to get a little crowded. Not that I am complaining, mind you, as the Skeletor’s crew is my favorite MOTU faction, but it is good to get a little femininity in the Dark Hemisphere. However, I can assure you that Evil-Lyn will not be there to spread hearts and flowers; quite the opposite, actually, and as far as I am concerned, not only can she make the Heroic Warriors quake in their boots, but her comrades as well.
Throughout the storied history of Masters of the Universe, Skeletor has been portrayed in a variety of ways – from Evil Lord of Destruction in the mini-comics, to comic bone-head in the Filmation and New Adventures series and back to sinister half-brother of King Randor in the 200x mythos. He is a man of all seasons. Evil-Lyn does not share that distinction, however. She is bad, she has always been bad and I am quite sure she will always be bad. In fact, and I am not just saying this because of her name, I think at her core Evil-Lyn is even more mean and ruthless than Skeletor himself (let’s face it, she would usurp him at every single chance that came along). However, Skeletor’s powers should not be trifled with so, for the time being, she is the unchallenged Number Two to Skull Face himself. That’s right, Ron, you know how you are always asking who Number Two works for? Well, on Eternia, it is Skeletor. Ahem.
I have to admit that when I first saw the prototype pictures of Evil-Lyn I was a little underwhelmed. Not that I thought she looked bad, mind you – she looked exactly how I pictured she was supposed to be. At her literal base, Evil-Lyn is a yellow-skinned, blue-costumed, 90% repaint of Teela. That is how she was back in 1984 and that is how she remains today. So, I am not quite sure what I was expecting because really, the prototype nailed her classic look (good for me because I am very much a classic MOTU guy). I suppose when you are surrounded by crazy-looking characters like Moss Man and Optikk you can tend to get a little over-shadowed, no matter how important you are in the annals of the Eternian Mythos.
However, after jumping to conclusions with January’s Adora only to find that the production figure turned out beautifully, I wanted to save my true judgement until I had the figure in had. Glad I did because, like the lady before her, Evil-Lyn came through production very nicely and turned out to be a very striking, very cold looking figure. Just as she should be. Leave it the Four Horsemen, right? I mean – should anyone really doubt their abilities at this point? I think I own around 400 action figures designed and sculpted by them, so where does “underwhelmed” come from? I dunno, but it is always good to be pleasently surprised by a new toy, so credit to Mattel in that category as well, they got her through production very nicely.
Not a detail was missed here, from the blue skull on her helmet/hat thingee to her matching dark blue nail polish. If the Evil name wasn’t enough to convince you, the polish will be – bad girls wear dark nail polish. Now, her costume colors and skin tone are a bit garish by design, but there are some nice accents to both. I was kind of afraid of the shiny accents on her costume details and gauntlets from the original pictures – the looked silver to me, but I am happy to report that they are are actually just a shiny bright blue keeping with the pallette of the original figure, just with more detail. She also has some airbrushing on her skin so that she isn’t just a wall of yellow. It works well on this particular figure so hopefully it will be consistant – I think if there was too much she would look more orange than yellow. I really like the green they used for her eye shadow and actual eyes as well. It plays off of the yellow flesh tone in an intense sort of way and gives her a cold, almost vacant stare which I think works.
One of the best parts about the actual figure though, is the costume. Yes, it is a dark and light blue Teela get-up but it has improved from an engineering standpoint. Mattel is listening and attempting to correct some criticisms from the online fan community; this is proven by the material used for Evil-Lyn’s actual costume – it is made from a very soft plastic (the most pliable used in the MOTUC line thus far) and gives her full range of montion in her waist and hip articulation without being hampered. I mark this as a great improvement over the Teela figure and I think a lot of fans will be quite pleased with this. Conversely though, Lyn does still suffer from a slight bobble head, just like the ladies before her. I know Matty is working on a solution to this so hopefully by the time She-Ra rolls around is will be corrected. However, for what it is, the combination of her collar and helmet make it so it is not as apparent as some previous offerings but I am sure that this being the internet and all, some will still find issue with this. Which is great, constructive criticism is what helps make a toy line better.
For her accessories, I think there are some solid hits and a couple of things that will come down to personal preference. First off, Evil-Lyn really comes with a pack-in character that goes beyond the normal “accessory” category. Yep, a lot of people expected it and we did get the evil counterpart to the October-shipping Zoar, Screeech. That is with three “E”s and no Bayside High, I imagine this Screeech would claw out old Mr. Belding’s eyes. The cool part about Screeech (you know, aside from actually getting a figure of him (I just assume it is a him)) is that we get the armor and requisite perch, something that was missing with Zoar, though we have been promised them in the future, probably when the Sorceress is released. I really like the color scheme on Screeech and although there is no real reason why I expected to get him with Evil-Lyn, I am glad we got him here.
Another cool accessory is Evil-Lyn’s wand. It is a great update from the original (this one does NOT glow) and it is THE appropriate accessory for our resident evil sorceress. Evil-Lyn is all about the magic and spells so she needs a good magic wand. I really like the crystal ball portion too, it is a smokey blue and translucent – a very nice touch as light can pass through it and make it look almost magical in it’s own right. I am not quite as thrilled with the actual color of the wand itself, it kind of clashes with her outfit, but that is a personal take on that so your opinion will probably vary. Finally, the top of the wand (including the crystal ball) is meant to be removable which leads us to the next accessory…
The staff. Essentially you can turn Evil-Lyn’s magic wand into a magic staff just by switching over the top portion. All in all, the staff looks like a long version of the wand. This is obviously taking a queue from the 200x influence because Evil-Lyn was equipped similarly in that line. To be honest, I think MOTUC has enough staffs for now as it is and I greatly prefer the wand, but again, that is a personal preference – it is nice to be able to choose.
Finally there is the dagger, which on it’s own merits is a fine, detailed accessory, but I am not sure it is required for my tastes. Yes, I know it is a carry-over from 200x, but the idea of the dagger always puzzled me there too. Evil-Lyn is not a hand to hand fighter, so there is no real use for it in that sense, but she is also not (to me anyway) one of the those “eye of newt and toe of frog” witches so I don’t see it being used for incantations either. Personally, I would have loved to have seen the tooling dollars used here on a resculpted “spell-casting” hand instead of the dagger, but I understand why it was included so it is a nice nod to the 200x fans – again, just my personal preference.
Even though your villains shelf already has a lot of blue and yellow to it – Evil-Lyn is going to stand out for you in a great way. She breaks up the man clan in Snake Mountain and certainly increases the evilness (like I said, it’s in the name!). She also represents, to me at least, the last piece of the puzzle for Skeletor’s main crew. Beastman, Mer-Man, Tri-Klops, Trap Jaw and Evel-Lyn were always the main baddies so it is really cool to call a small subset fininshed in my book. It is strange though, the unannounced SDCC 2010 MOTUC exclusive figure not withstanding, Evil-Lyn is the last of the classic Masters figures to be released until AUGUST when Whiplash arrives. This line is going in some crazy cool directions, I am just glad to be a part of the ride.
I recommend picking up Evil-Lyn in April (like you weren’t going to anway) and if you are a Club Eternia member, you will get her automatically. I know some people are holding out for a more modern take on Ms. Powers here but Toy Guru already confirmed that she is a long way out. I count myself fortunate being a mostly classic guy, this is the Lyn I wanted. Oh, and we can be happy to be getting her father, The Faceless One, in May of 2011 – don’t think we have forgotten about that, Scott!
*Thanks for reading and the best to Matty and Toy Guru for making this happen. We have lots more goodies coming, some Wundarful, some in TWOS and even a Fashion Show. Stay tuned.