We are absolutely living in second (or third, depending on how you look at it) golden age for Masters of the Universe figures. With multiple lines currently being produced by Mattel, and current and future media in the works, there is a lot of love coming to and from Eternia. I am a big fan and ardent supporter of the MOTU Origins line, but there is a lot about Masterverse that I like, too. This new Shadow Weaver is certainly one of those things.
Right now, I feel like Origins in hitting on all cylinders. From the design to character selection to vehicles to play sets, that line has it all. Masterverse is more of a mixed bag for me, and it really should be the one that leans more into my wheelhouse. Some of the figures, like the 40th Anniversary He-Man and Skeletor, and the recent Two-Bad, are wonderful. But then you have some like the Savage He-Man that are pretty big misses in a lot of aspects for me. So, Masterverse continues to be rollercoaster, and while I feel that if they made a straight pivot to the style of those aforementioned 40th Anniversary figures, I understand they are trying to encompass a lot of different things.
That said, even with the unpredictable ride, I love it when we get a great figure, and Shadow Weaver certainly fits that category. For a character who never got a figure in the 1980s, Weaver has enjoyed quite a bit of love in the action figure realm in recent years. Furthermore, I have really enjoyed all of them, too – so it is good that Mattel and Super7 have done her justice in some very different formats. I don’t (currently) have the ReAction figure in my collection, but from Masters of the Universe Classics, to Keshi, and now Masterverse, it is difficult to find a loser in the bunch. So your patience has paid off, Shadow Weaver fans!
This new Shadow Weaver has a lot to like, and for me that is because it holds true to the iconic design that was established right from the get-go in the Filmation cartoon. If you think about it, Shadow Weaver hasn’t had a lot of substantial redesign over the years, which is something even characters like He-Man and Skeletor cannot boast, so that speaks to the strong work done back in the 80s. Right now, Princess of Power is not getting much (if any) representation in Origins, so getting a classic looking figure with modern sensibilities from that corner continues to be a good thing.
With this Masterverse figure, you get a lot of familiarity, so robes of dark pink, and a mysterious face that remains obscured. Honestly, a part from some new seam lines and summer sleeves, this is a great interpretation of the classic in this new Masterverse world. I know the short sleeves are going to be divisive because I could see it as being interpreted as “change for the sake of change,” but am calling this one her “putting in the work” version. As in, I can see why Weaver would not want long and flow-y robe sleeves while working over a bubbling cauldron. So, I don’t mind this little change at all. I am a classic homer in just about all aspects, so I lean toward remaining true to those designs, but this is a fine update. The thing is, the soft goods portion of the cloak comes over the arms so that it attaches naturally, so If the short sleeves on the sculpted arms are not for you, it is pretty much a non-issue with the cloak.
Like all Masterverse figures, Shadow Weaver boasts are considerable amount of articulation, and this one out paces the previous versions of her in that regard. It’s tough to get a figure mostly shrouded in robes to the “super articulated” level, but there are definitely some useful points here that have been absent before, and the range of movement is surprisingly good. There are three different spots on the “leg” portion of the figure that move, so you can get the SW into poses that were previously just not possible. The soft goods backing piece helps facilitate the movement of some of the joints, and it is well done for cloth, which I usually do not take to at this scale.
Shadow Weaver comes packaged with her crystal ball wand, fire effect, alternate hands, and a flight/hover stand. These are all pretty predictable to her, but also to the Masterverse formula. The hover stand is pretty requisite for me as it shows off her flying ability, but also props her up to help with arrangement on the shelf, so I am glad it is included. Swappable hands are always good for options, and while the want has never been a huge deal to me (I see most of her magic coming from her hands), it’s a fitting implement for her, and the detachable flame adds a nice effect to the piece.
Finally, I want to say that something Masterverse has been nailing is the packaging art. Origins has been doing the same, but these dynamic figures have had supporting art, and in this case from MOTU stalwart Eamon O’Donoghue – that always does them justice. The back illustration emotes a lot of classic feel, but I really dig the piece on the spine that shows off that wand and effect with some great attention to lighting and detail. I wish the packaging allowed for more, because it really is exceptional.
Overall, I feel that Masterverse is still very much finding its way. As I said, the 40th Anniversary aesthetic, and to a lesser extent, the “New Eternia” designs are the strongest, so I hope to see more of that. I got a quick order in at Amazon for this when it popped up briefly, but I have not seen pre-orders for her just yet. Hopefully BBTS and others will have them available soon, because Shadow Weaver is a very solid figure.