Wednesday, June 22, 2011

MOTUC adds Catra and Sy-Klone to the mix - watch the fur fly!

Mattel’s Masters of the Universe Classics line continues to pump out some great additions to their expansive revisit to the He-Man and She-Ra worlds, and tonight I’m looking at two recent additions - Catra and Sy-Klone. I’m very happy with both of these figures, with one or two minor comments.

Catra is an exciting addition not only to the line-up of MOTUC’s female characters, but also to the Princess of Power stream of the line. Catra was originally imagined as She-Ra’s main nemesis, but ended up working for the Horde, although on her own terms.

My Catra didn’t get off to a stellar start, as she was the figure that arrived in the horribly battered padded bag and mailer box that I posted about here. I really don’t know why Mattel thinks this sort of packing for international shipping is acceptable, but I won’t start another rant here. Thankfully, I’m an opener and the figure itself wasn’t damaged, so I didn’t have to try to chase a replacement.

I like the MOTUC basic female buck. It’s nice and solid, especially in the upper arm area which is a real deficiency of the DCUC females. This is a very nice use of the basic buck with some custom sculpting for her hands (with claw like nails), bodice, collar, cape and boots. Her head is a real treat with a huge sculpted ponytail. The combination of the cape and ponytail do make her a bit hard to balance, and this isn’t helped by the loose ankle joints that seem to plague so much of this line, but she can be posed with a bit of effort.

Catra comes with a bucketload of accessories. For starters, there are two different helmet options - a silver cat styled version and her more memorable (to me anyway) red version, which is what I’ll be displaying her with. They are both very well constructed, but both sit on top of her eyebrows, which is a bit of shame, as obscuring her eyebrows takes away the villainous look on her face, since her mouth is sculpted in a neutral position.

Catra also has a range of weapons, including a pink sword with a cat face base and a shield. The one I’ll be displaying her with, however, is her groovy whip, mainly because it’s distinct from other MOTUC accessories. It does have a comb as a base, which I assume is a nod to the original figures which may have had rooted hair, but I’m ignoring this “girl’s toy” bit because the whip is quite fun and puts a different look on the MOTUC shelf.

While this is really an excellent figure, there’s one distraction and one disappointment. The thing that I find distracting is Catra’s headsculpt. There’s nothing wrong with the quality of it, rather it’s her uncanny resemblance to the Wicked Stepmother from Cinderella. I’m sure it’s unintentional, but it’s a tad freaky!

The disappointment is the paint job on Catra’s arm and legs. Her knees and upper arms are reddish in colour, which makes me wonder if it’s a beat of leaked spray from her bodice. The end result is that she looks like she’s tried to cut costs on her spray tan and ended up with an uneven job as a result. It definitely wreaks havoc on the figure’s QC marks. In the end, there’s a lot of other things happening visually with this figure which distract the eye from this issue. I’ve only seen my Catra, so I have no idea if this is across the line or if I just got a “special” one.

Sy-Klone is a very eye-catching figure due to his somewhat garish colour combination which is totally faithful to his original look. Sy-Klone was introduced in 1985 right at the end of the MOTU animated series, and while I do remember seeing him on the pegs as a kid of fifteen or so, my minimal He-Man collection had stopped growing by then. The bright blue skin and yellow gear are very hard to forget!

The figure itself is a pretty straightforward adaption of Sy-Klone’s original figure, but his accessory set adds something new to the mix which is a nod to the 200x version. Along with a fairly standard shield, Sy-Klone comes with a very large red attachment that fits in his back and represents his tornado-style powers. This inclusion is a nice way of combining the classic with the newer look, and to me it’s the best of the bunch, as I didn’t really like 200x Sy-Klone’s sphinx-like styling.

I realise that the original Sy-Klone re-used the He-Man head, and while that’s been done here to be faithful, I do think Sy-Klone could have used a new face sculpt just to give him a real sense of something new. It’s the one thing I’d improve about this otherwise very enjoyable figure, but I realise it’s a stylistic choice.

Both Catra and Sy-Klone look great in my MOTUC display, which is taking a more promiment place in my collection room as the MOTUC world grows. I’m already looking forward to what the 2012 Subscription will bring - as long as it doesn’t come in mailer bags!

You can see more pics at Facebook, discuss this at the AFB Forum, and you can comment on this post to enter the June AFB Comment of the Month Contest!

Until next time!


chrismandesign said...

they really look like toys, with their shinny colors... not my kind, but they’re nice figures, the body proportion in Catra is specially good =)

Unknown said...

Great figures i think Catra is the better of the two but still both are nice. And what is this background you are using?

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