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Hallowpalooza – He-Mike Custom MOTUC Skeleton Warriors

HALLOWPALOOZA

I was lucky enough to be able to purchase some amazing Skeleton Warrior customs by one of my favorite customizers, He-Mike, at this year’s Power-Con.  Let’s take a closer look at these beautiful works of custom art.

I ended up buying six Skeleton Warriors from He-Mike this year and got a few different variations on the classic Skeleton Warrior.

He-Mike made a few variations on the Skeleton Warrior with a couple of different head sculpt varieties and boot/glove/loincloth/armor/weapon combinations.  The guy above is the most unique with a Skeletor loincloth, Trapjaw boots and hands, Mo-Larr gloves, and some armor from an old Galaxy Warrior figure.  I love the combo of the Trap Jaw and Mo-Larr gloves.  It makes for a cool armored-gauntlet look.  Also, the idea of a Skeleton Warrior wielding a blaster feels like a unique idea that really would only work in the MOTU world.

He-Mike Skeletons_34This guy was clearly a Hordesman in a previous life.  The combination of the helmet, gloves, and battle ax gives him an executioner vibe.

This warrior has a more classic heroic-warrior feel with Tri-Klops bracers and King Grayskull boots and loincloth.  The sword is from a Marvel Legends Conan figure and feels right with MOTU figures.

I think my favorite variation is the unhelmeted guys with Skeletor boots, Tri-Klops bracers and sword, and the standard MOTUC loincloth.  Finally, the helmeted variation in Skeletor colors features every MOTUC collector’s favorite: DUCKFEETS!

He-Mike Skeletons_01 He-Mike Skeletons_02 He-Mike Skeletons_03Articulation

Part of what makes these figures so amazing to me is that, apart from the ab crunch, they have the standard MOTUC articulation and are just as, if not more, poseable than the standard MOTUC figure.  The elbows and thinner arms allow for a lot more two-handed wielding than you usually get in an MOTUC figure.

He-Mike Skeletons_04 He-Mike Skeletons_05The Skeleton Warriors have:

  • Ball-and-socket head
  • Swivel/hinged shoulders, hips, elbows and knees
  • Swivel wrists, boots, thighs, and wrists
  • Hinged boots

He-Mike Skeletons_06 He-Mike Skeletons_07Construction

The basic construction of these figures is a combination of a “Skeleton Warriors” Aracula figure with MOTUC hips, boots, and gloves/bracers, and the neck from a Predator Skull trophy.

He-Mike Skeletons_08 He-Mike Skeletons_09The two different head variations are a modified Scareglow head and the skull that came with Demo-Man with additional sculpting.

He-Mike Skeletons_10 He-Mike Skeletons_11 He-Mike Skeletons_12 He-Mike Skeletons_13The use of the Aracula parts gives the skeleton a great chunky feel that feels totally right for MOTUC skeletons.  The clever transplanting of small swivel/hinge joints from Star Wars figures in the shoulders, knees, and elbows helps straighten out the proportions of the Aracula arms and legs so they feel a little less cartoony than they did on the original figure.  In the end, the sculpt feels like a great stylistic match for MOTUC, and though there hasn’t really been a Skeleton Warrior exactly like this in MOTU media of any kind, these fit right in.

He-Mike Skeletons_14 He-Mike Skeletons_15 He-Mike Skeletons_16 He-Mike Skeletons_17Paint

He-Mike hit upon the perfect paint strategy for these figures.  The skeleton parts have a gritty wash that brings out all the great detail there, but the other parts have a classic, clean paint job that makes them feel like they fit right in with the regular production MOTUC figures.

He-Mike Skeletons_18 He-Mike Skeletons_19 He-Mike Skeletons_20It’s a tough balance to strike when working on MOTUC customs because I feel like if you make them too gritty (as I often do), they feel less like MOTUC figures.

He-Mike Skeletons_21I had raved about He-Mike’s original MOTUC custom Skeletons quite a bit last year after Power-Con, so it was an unbelievable treat to actually get to purchase some this year at the con.  I’m amazed at how playable and how smoothly polished these custom figures are.  Unfortunately, Mike is sold out of all the Skeletons he made to sell and doesn’t have any for preorder or presale right now.

He-Mike Skeletons_22

He-Mike Skeletons_23Skeleton Warriors He-Mike_02 Skeleton Warriors He-MikeHe-Mike Skeletons_25

The last few MOTUC Features (Casta, Batros, and Sky High) had a bunch of pics of these Skeleton Warriors, so check those out if you need more Skeleton Warrior action!

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