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Masters of the Universe Classics – Building the 2015 Subscription

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Editor’s Note: This article is a continuation of our hypothetical lineup wishes for the Masters of the Universe Classics line for 2014 and 2015. You can read part one here where we discuss the 2014 lineup.

New York Comic-Con has left us, (Good journey!) and Mattel definitely made an impact in the world of He-Man and She-Ra with some questions finally answered. The line keeps growing, and in one particular case, so are the figures themselves because we now know EXTENDAR(!) is the June figure, followed by Space Mutant leader FLOGG!! And, as a result, my Masters of the Universe Classics 2015 predictions have already been ruined! Curse you, Mattel… what? It hasn’t? It’s all imaginary? That’s right! Oh, that’s good. I mean BAD! I NEED IT TO BE REAL!!! The saga continues! Oh, what a world…

MYSTERY WEAPON – ANGELLA

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As old mysteries were solved, new ones arose. A Battlegound Teela sword repainted with a pink hilt was on display at NYCC with no owner to claim it. Obviously a female character would have it. And while it would be a good theory to guess we would be getting a pink “Breast Cancer Awareness” Teela in a new two-piece outfit based on her Filmation look (which I would welcome, by the way), we are in the “all-star” portion of the subscription. Most She-Ravers agree that after Glimmer, the three top females still missing from Princess of Power are Queen Angella, Mermista, and Madame Razz. Mermista doesn’t have an ounce of pink on her, and Madame Razz wields magic. The hilt of the sword is in a hue of pink perfectly matching Angella’s attire. Additionally, her vintage action figure didn’t include a single weapon (not even “the shield”), so she’d need some type of accessory. In the original five-part “Secret of the Sword” story, Angella was holding a sword as she was rallying the rebellion to take back Castle Brightmoon. There are too many coincidences. But if it is Angella, is she is in the subscription itself, or is she a lead-in for an add-on sub? And if she is in, then who is out? Mermista? Filmation Hordak? Another “Defender of Good?” Flogg includes He-Man’s Flimation Sword of Power, so it can go in any direction at this point. Time will tell.

2015 SUBSCRIPTION FIGURE – HE-RO, SON OF HE-MAN

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There is a story to tell. And we need toys to tell that story. We have King He-Man with a sticker that says He-Ro, Son of He-Man. So if we have a logo that says it, then it’s only appropriate to get a figure of the character himself. We’ve seen very few images of what he was going to look like in the ’80s, so it’s a clean slate for Mattel and the Horsemen to really cut loose and have some fun with him. Plus, we could get a leaner male buck out of him, unless he takes after his dad who was massively jacked like every other Eternian. Either way, He-Ro would make such a great bookend figure for the subscription. But would he be a symbol of the last chapter, or a new beginning?

Arriving January 2015…

1st QUARTER MONTHLY FIGURES

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January – MADAME RAZZ and BROOM w/ KOWL (Filmation) and LIGHT HOPE (prismatic backdrop)

February – RIO BLAST

March – SSSQUEEZE

It could potentially be our last year of a full subscription. Originally, I had Angella in the January slot, but I’m guessing she’s the connection to the mystery sword at NYCC. I could put Mermista here to anchor it (mind the sea pun), but I’m pleading for Mermista in 2014. So Madame Razz shall be the POP emotional blackmail of the 2015 subscription campaign. And before anyone speaks up about her getting a “deluxe slot,” try to remember that she is a very small character, even if she is a 100 percent newly tooled toy. Teela fit in a box with herself, a shield, staff, sword, another head, armor, Zoar, armor for Zoar, and a perch! Throw in Broom, a Filmation colored Kowl (the weapons pack is for repaints, after all), and a prismatic backdrop for Light Hope, and all of She-Ra’s secret keepers are complete in one set! In February… do I even need to mention the importance of Rio Blast? He would be the final Heroic Warrior on the vintage MOTU side of things. I’m really eager to see how the Horsemen will pull him off after a perfect Extendar! Sssqueeeze is the penultimate Snake Man because I do include Blast-Attak. I do. I’m curious if we’ll get a straight-up ’80s version, or will some 200X influence sneak in as well. He was one of the better 200X updates, in my opinion.

$40 item – MULTI-BOT

Q12015MOTUCMulti-Bot We all know Modulok was a long time coming. Admittedly, I was surprised that he was a quarterly beast. I thought for sure he and Multi-Bot would both be Comic-Con exclusives for 2014 and 2015, respectively. Both have different paint decos in Filmation and in their vintage toy counterparts that made for easy variants for the convention and Mattycollector versions. That said, I’m taking a page out of Modulok’s playbook and putting Multi-Bot here to anchor subscription sales. The amazing thing about Multi-Bot is that his robotic arms and legs could possibly be reused for other robotic characters like New Adventures’ Artilla. The only thing that throws me about him is I really would love both the Filmation and the Mattel color schemes. The red/yellow/blue and the black/green/orange/silver combos are really eye-catching. Needless to say, I’m extremely curious as to how he’s executed. Like Modulok, I think we’ll get more importance in his vintage toy look, but I’d love both versions. Just putting it out there.

2nd QUARTER MONTHLY FIGURES

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April – DRAGSTOR

May – PEEKABLUE

June – BLAST-ATTAK

The return of … Dragstor! With Flogg clocking in as the July 2014 figure in MOTU Classics, some shuffling in our original lineup occurred. So I pulled Dragstor from my 2014 and put him where I originally placed Flogg. And after Madame Razz alongside our 2014 POP subscription predictions, we’re down to only two POP rebels. Peekablue has long been held as one of the more interesting designs for the Four Horsemen to tackle. It’s sad to see her arriving so late to the party, but she’s definitely like Ram-Man in the important MOTU Classics hostage category. Blast-Attak completes the Snake Men portion of MOTU. Hopefully we’ll get Snake Armor He-Man, and let’s face it, I wouldn’t say no to Serpos, or even another crack at Kiss Hiss. 200X or vintage 2.0 with corrected shoulders and hips? Surprise me. I’ll take both.

$25 item – NEW ADVENTURES (DISKS OF DOOM?) SKELETOR

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I’ve been trying to wrap my head around this one for a while now. This is my logic. New Adventures Skeletor is a highly wanted variant, of course, especially after the release of NA He-Man. So why a “variant” of NA Skeletor when the default NA variant hasn’t been made? In the New Adventures cartoon, Skeletor takes on his Disks of Doom attire and kind of becomes the default Skeletor for the majority of the series. He could include the Havoc Staff from the first version, plus the accessories of this version, and you’re all set. Until the nerd rage kicks in to get the 1st NA Skeletor release, pronto.

3rd QUARTER MONTHLY FIGURES

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July – DESPARA

August – CALIX

September – MARA

Despara? Not more New Adventures? Well Mara won a poll at NYCC, against two other NA favorites, so it stands to reason 2015 won’t be full of New Adventures slots in the mainline sub. Despara, MOTU’s most recent retelling of Adora’s pre-She-Ra days has her as a ruthless Force Captain, dressed like her father figure, Hordak. This interpretation went over pretty well with fans and she climbed recent fan polls as an acceptable character all her own. It seems appropriate to have her be the gateway to future action figures based on the DC Comics, much like how Adora was the first POP character in Classics.

Speaking of the Horde, the 200X series introduced us to Calix, a Hordesman standing alongside popular mainstays Leech, Mantenna, and Grizzlor. His brief appearance brought about so many questions. Is he an evil Rock Warrior? What can he do? Why did Hordak kill him? More importantly, why don’t we have a toy of him yet? I don’t really have to explain why Mara is here, but I can use the opportunity to point out a couple of things. First, her prototype’s legs, with some imagination, could be a great buck reuse for Granita (or from Granita, considering the 2014 article). And second, if you take a page out of the Queen Marlena/Captain Glenn playbook, Mattel can achieve the Jetlag Mara “dress” look as well, with simply including an interchangeable head (or hair) and a dress covering that slips over the torso and fastens into place. No new arms, torso, or legs necessary. Leverage that second purchase, Mattel!

$38 item – CLAWDEEN

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Honest confession: Clawdeen confused the heck out of me. When I first saw the toy, I thought it was the ugliest thing in the universe, and its function was to embarrass the Rebellion into surrender. I wanted the Filmation/mini-comics Flutter Plane or Scorpia’s tank, and instead we get “pink Battle Cat for girls.” And is it a girl? In Filmation, it looked like a male lion and much more menacing than the toy. When you watch the show, you always got a sense of what the toys could be. It was much more gender-neutral. Fast-forward to 2013, and Mattel’s recently debuted Battle Lion. Immediately fans began to see what the Horsemen could possibly do with a character like Clawdeen. Shave down Battle Lion’s teeth (or not), maybe use Battle Cat’s jaw (no chin fuzz, keeping Clawdeen a “she”), add a saddle and some silver headgear (nod to the vintage silver hair tie), and you have a bad-ass mount for Catra that just happens to be pink. And since I have some of your ears, I would also love Mattel to pull a Bubble Power She-Ra and get a toy version of Catra (with pieces to make her “Scratchin’ Sound” and “Shower Power” variants) that can ride Clawdeen as well.

4th QUARTER MONTHLY FIGURES

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October – PRAHVUS

November – SPINNERELLA

December – NINJOR

And we’ve reached the last quarter of 2015. What a ride! Who knew going into this we could potentially get here? And yet as much as He-fans bicker, we did it together (hopefully)! And for that, bless our rampant fear of no more toys. However, what did end too soon was the 200X He-Man cartoon, and with it, so many interesting new characters.

Prahvus is one of the major baddies fans were clamoring for a figure way back when. We got Shadow Weaver and other Filmation mainstays. We need more 200X guys as well. I still go back and forth as to whether he fits here, or more in line with a Tytus/Megator-ish scale.

Netossa will have plenty to be grateful for next Thanksgiving, because she has been so lonely and it’s perfect that Spinnerella is the final POP figure. Any She-Raver will tell you that Spinnerella is the rarest vintage figure in any of the lines and is the last piece purchased in a vintage collection. True story: Almost eight years ago, I actually held one on a mint, US card that was owned by a private collector, and I was made an offer to buy it for the low, low price of $5,500. Strangely, I didn’t have five grand on me, so this is the next best thing. Really curious as to how the Horsemen will pull off her wrist streamers.

Lastly, Ninjor, the last of Skeletor’s Warriors, will sneak in one silent night, just in time for the holidays. So many of my best He-Man memories revolve around Christmas, so if the line were to end, it really is the perfect time to celebrate such an amazing feat of releasing every vintage MOTU and POP character and then some!

$35 item – SAGITAR

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Sadly for NA fans, most vintage MOTU purist view NA He-Man back in the day as “not quite He-Man.” Removing the barbarian/mythical aspect left fans struggling to get into this new version. But Sagitar stood out! The awesome thing about him is that, despite being a New Adventures character, Sagitar feels like a vintage MOTU Heroic Warrior. If the original line never ended, I could see him being placed in either the Powers of Grayskull line or Masters proper. He fits right in. He also requires a lot of new tooling and wouldn’t be easy to get past 2015. So NOW is the time get him done. There are many beasts that can share parts and he’s not one of them. This could be his one chance, so I’m placing him here. He deserves a figure. And I can easily see Mattel, the Four Horsemen, and fans welcoming arguably the most striking and interesting New Adventures character.

$35 “Holiday item” – SAUROD and GWILDOR

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The holiday season will be where we see He-Man wrapping up and when we will know what’s possible for 2016 and beyond. And what came beyond the toys and the cartoon was the movie. So celebrating all things He-Man, we get a holiday pack completing the three movie characters that Mattel created as action figures in the ’80s. We’re crossing the finish line, so these two are a given. Here’s the deal, though: fans would agree that these two should NOT be the last movie figures. We got Shadow Weaver, Granamyr, Scorpia, and Strong Arm. There is no reason to hope that we get all of MOTU under one licensing umbrella. If Mattel can negotiate Ghostbusters for a Mattycollector line, we can sure beg like crazy for Karg, Detective Lubic, and, most importantly, “movie” He-Man and Skeletor, among others. Christmas miracle, guys!

NON-SUBSCRITPION ITEMS:

CHASE FIGURE – ROBOTO 2.0 (200X)

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All technology eventually gets an upgrade! And when your original version has some known defects, a new, improved version dealing directly with those flaws will be in demand because consumers tend to buy the upgrade. Roboto was sadly the poster-bot for manufacturing errors that came down the line from Mattel. His now infamous reverse shoulders are usually the go-to example of possible speed bumps in the path of getting a figure out, month after month, in a timely manner. Here’s Mattel’s chance to fix it. Many fans felt that even if they were pleased with Roboto “warts and all,” he was somewhat lacking. Fans have said some easy accessories could have come in a 200X head, clip-on 200X armor, on top of some snap-on firepower to give fans an option in creating either the vintage or 200X version of him. This is a win-win situation. A fixed Roboto, with corrected shoulders, a new 200X head, and armor with new snap-on weapons gives you not only a perfect 200X Roboto, but if you own the previous Roboto, then you have his 1.0 head and weapons to make your ultimate version, much like She-Ra did with her Bubble Power variant.

BATTLE RAM

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At this point, we shouldn’t have to ask to make this because it’s already BEEN MADE! Originally shown at Comic-Con for feedback, it’s been completely unanimous that fans want this vehicle. It’s the last (half of a) piece to complete the 1982 He-Man line. To put it into perspective, Castle Grayskull lapped this thing! Not only does it need to be released, it must(!) include a Sky Sled made for Skeletor’s Evil Warriors. There is no way that this vehicle would struggle for sales. Pretty much a no-brainer and it’s already sculpted. We only need one thing now: a green light.

NIGHT STALKER

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The He-Man universe is about evil opposites and saving money. With so much new tooling here, we need some easy-to-sell items that shouldn’t cost Mattel a pretty cent and are pretty much a “duh” for MOTU collectors. Stridor, meet Night Stalker. He’s 100 percent made of you, and grown men are going to make fighting noises as you two attack each other for HOURS. Deal? Deal.

SNAKE MOUNTAIN

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I ain’t too proud to beg. Everyone wants one, right? We saw the Icon Heroes version, right? We need this in our lives!! I personally have wanted this MORE than Castle Grayskull. And as epic as that castle is, there are very few things that can eclipse it, and Snake Mountain, for me, is one of those things. Unleash the Four Horsemen at that thing! There, that pretty much sums it up. And if it doesn’t, I have one word for you: LAVAFALL!

San Diego Comic-Con 2014 Exclusives – THE FINAL BATTLE! LASER POWER HE-MAN vs. LASER LIGHT SKELETOR (plus…?)

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The (hopefully not) final San Diego Comic-Con exclusive, celebrating the last confrontation of Masters of the Universe’s greatest rivalry, hits the convention circuit. These two figures are extremely sought after by vintage collectors, and it would be awesome to see this amazing set come out at a price cheaper than importing the old ones from eBay. As an aside, many fans have suggested that Laser Light Skeletor, with some minor part swapping, highly resembles New Adventures Skeletor. Therein lies a possible SDCC variant – interchangeable parts creating the vintage NA Skeletor, providing a perfect bridge between the end of the original MOTU line and the beginning of the New Adventures series! Skeletor always has a backup plan, and his toys should as well! We get three figures for the price of two. And if it were up to me, I would have Laser Power He-Man maybe-possibly-sorta-kinda resemble someone named Dolph Lundgren. The LP He-Man’s hairstyle matches the film look. Just saying.

Traveling Convention Exclusive – ULTIMATE WARRIOR GODDESS TEELA from “The Tale of Teela” mini-comic

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This one is trickier than the other. Teela is one of the major characters we asked for a 2.0 way back when she was first released with a hard plastic skirt. If you can overlook that, she is one of the most gorgeous and highly accessorized pieces in the entire He-Man line. That said, fans still want more. Whether it’s her hair up in blonde, her hair down in red, a new head entirely, or her Filmation look, an updated version of the most popular MOTU female would be a welcome thing. This one would have a two-piece attire with a waist twist, more closely resembling her vintage action figure, with a new two-piece Cobra armor and helmet (borrowed from my Green Goddess 2.0 in the previous article), and a “bonded” Goddess/Teela head from when both women merge to blast Skeletor. The outfit could conceivably be a gateway to a Filmation deco for her and future versions of Evil-Lyn as well.

ADD-ON SUBSCRIPTIONS

The MOTU subscription is all about filling in the different corners of the larger He-Man Universe. As big as we went in 2014, there’s no reason to not be just as ambitious in 2015. Add-on subs are the cherry on top of a perfect sundae.

MULTI-PACK “PLUS” SUBSCRIPTION featuring NEW ADVENTURES OF HE-MAN and FILMATION MINI-CHARACTERS THREE-PACK:

Piggybacking from the POP/Mini-comics two-packs from 2014, 2015 will feature three mini-packs based on the smaller characters populating the Filmation Universe, alongside two-packs of some VERY overdue New Adventures mainstays. Additionally, taking a cue from Flogg including He-Man’s Filmation sword, each pack will include a bonus items for your other MOTU Classics characters.

January – ROBOT KNIGHTS three-pack (w/ Filmation COUNT MARZO head sculpt)

February – LORD DARIUS vs. CRITA (w/ alternate PALACE GUARD head – new Caucasian, Asian, or tan-skinned)

March – TROLLANS three-pack: DREE ELLE, MONTORK, and GORPO (with 200X CAPTAIN RANDOR head)

April – TUSKADOR vs. QUAKKE (w/ 200X SY-KLONE head)

May – TWIGGETS three-pack: SPRAG, SPRITINA, and SPROCKER (w/ bonus MODULOK’s third Filmation leg)

June – ARTILLA vs. LIZORR (w/ bonus SNOUT SPOUT head – fixed trunk)

The 2015 add-on sub kicks off in January with Mattel and the Horsemen having both expressed their desires to make Skeletor’s Robot Knights for a while now. So it’s more of a question of where they fit. To sweeten the “pot,” that black flower petal pusher Count Marzo gets a 2.0 on his head sculpt based on his Filmation noggin, packed in with the Knights. In Feburary, New Adventures’ Lord Darius arrives packed with the lone female Space Mutant, Crita. Mara secured her position in the mainline sub, and she needs her evil opposite. Included with Lord Darius and Crita is a new palace-guard head. Since the previous Caucasian palace guard head is specifically identified on packaging as Lt. Spector (based on Toyguru), fans should have some sort of alternate “default” head. Barring that, any other nationality could work to help flesh out your Eternos Palace Guard army.

March sees a well-deserved Trollan three-pack. Orko gets a “This is Your Life”-style set including his girlfriend Dree Elle, his uncle Montork, as well as the first figure for Gorpo — Orko’s originally scripted identity before he became the lovably annoying court jester we know today. Packed in this magical set is Captain Randor’s head from the 200X series for your King Randor battle armored first release.

Next is a New Adventures pack pitting Tuskador vs. Quakke. Tuskador and Mara were separated by ONE vote, so he should be here. In terms of space mutants, both Quakke and Lizorr come in right after Crita in popularity amongst NA fans, so these heavy hitters are getting filled in quite nicely in April and June, respectively. And to battle Lizorr, Artilla takes the final spot in June’s Heroic NA slot along with a much-need Snout Spout head rerelease with a fixed trunk that isn’t deteriorating in the packaging. Sy-Klone’s 200X head was a popular request for the MYP head-pack, so why not throw in another incentive?

Lastly, where MOTU has Trollans, POP has Twiggets. In May a three-pack spotlighting Sprag, Spritina, and Sprocker, the three main Whispering Woods inhabitants filled in the corners of the Rebellion nicely. Included with them is a pack-in of Modulok’s missing third Filmation leg, so if you purchased a 2014 sub already, you can finally make a Filmation-accurate version of the Horde’s top scientist! I mean… Horde cook.

FILMATION “PLUS” MINI-SUBSCRIPTION

Third time is the charm for fans of Filmation. Starting in July for the remainder of 2015, more of Filmation’s longtime requested figures are coming to your doorstep alongside additional bonus items. Yes, MORE bonus items. If this is the last year, let’s pack in all in there!

July – LORD MASQUE w/ Masks of Power (Filmation version)

August – BUZZSAW HORDAK (Filmation) w/ interchangeable arm transformations and buzz saw chest opening

September – KITTRINA w/ 200X COUNT MARZO (depowered)

October – DYLAMUG w/ bonus 200X ODIPHUS

November – HUNGA the HARPY w/ interchangeable HARPY “army builder” head

December – KING MIRO w/ interchangeable CAPTAIN MIRO head

Just because Huntara won the vote, fans were very clear that Shokoti should not be alone. That’s like separating the Star Sisters, or Fitso and Jitsu. If we have Shokoti, then we should have Lord Masque. And masks are exactly what he shall include, straight out of the classic “Masks of Power” episode.

Next, Filmation Hordak has been drafted out of the POP sub (replaced by Angella) and into this Filmation line, but with a twist! Anyone who had the vintage Buzzsaw Hordak will remember he looks just like the default, basic Hordak. Therefore, let’s combine the two! Filmation Hordak includes interchangeable parts to mimic the Buzzsaw Hordak variant, which also can retrofit to your original MOTU Classics Hordak as well. Two birds – one stone.

Kittrina is next, giving Chief Carnivus some feline company. She includes a stowaway in the mini, depowered Count Marzo to help fill out your 200X shelf. After her is a personal favorite of mine. Dylamug was one of the few Filmation originals I wanted so badly! He didn’t look like the typical He-Man figure and we only recently discovered he was, in fact, designed by Mattel to be a figure. His eyes and mouth were on a wheel mechanism, similar to Man-E-Faces and Double Trouble, and you can pick between several eyes and mouth expressions. Dial-a-mug! Get it? LOVE the naming conventions in He-Man!

Like Kittrina, Dylamug includes 200X baddie Odiphus. Although his 200X staction will do nicely, buying a rare 200X Jitsu just to get him is pricey. Plus getting a new one with articulation would be great! Angella’s archenemy Hunga the Harpy is full of value and potentially the dark-horse favorite of this entire mini-sub. POP fans may end up buying three or four of her since she includes a standard harpy army-builder head. The more Hungas you buy, the bigger your ranks!

Last, but not least, his majesty’s majesty King Miro makes his debut as an action figure. I can see some Four Horsemen creative magic in here to get a compromised look between Filmation and 200X versions. And for good measure, similar to Dekker, Miro includes a flashback “Captain Miro” head as well.

Is the Fwoosh’s 2015 MOTU Classics subscriptions (and everything else) too big? A little too ambitious? Probably. Expensive? Definitely. This goes to show one very important fact: He-Man isn’t dead. Not by a long shot. And there HAS to be a 2016, 2017, 2018, and beyond because there is no way Mattel and the Four Horsemen could possibly be finished when there is SO MUCH good stuff left to make:

  • The remaining New Adventures crew
  • Filmation characters
  • 200X/MYP characters
  • Mini-comics characters
  • Concept characters (Horde Mummy, Brain, Glob, etc.)
  • Popular Jetlag characters
  • Army builders
  • Bonus heads (alternate, as well as fixed heads like Snout Spout)
  • Repaints (Ram-Man, Trap Jaw, Beast Man, Teela, Evil Lyn)
  • Refreshes (Snake Men army in different colors, Horde Troopers)
  • Bonus weapons (repainted and new)
  • Variants (Snake Armor He-Man, Terror Claws Skeletor, 200X Sorceress, etc.)
  • Bonus heads (Filmation, Rooted hair POP heads, 200X, prototype designs),
  • Mini-characters (Odiphus, Count Marzo)
  • 2.0 versions of defective 1st releases, or a second pass at assorted A-Listers (Goddess/Teela, Roboto, King Hiss)
  • Movie figures (Karg, Lubic)
  • NEW characters introduced in DC comics and Mattel mini-comics (Black Wizard, NA She-Ra, Despara, Fang-Or, etc.)
  • More vintage beasts, vehicles, and playsets (Snake Mountain, Fright Zone, Crystal Castle, ETERNIA)
  • ALL-NEW CREATIONS!

…and I want a Flutter Plane. Seriously. He-Man’s just scratching the surface. As long as Mattel will make it, we will buy it. It’s such a cliché, but we do, in fact, have the power!

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