Joined: 18 Dec 2005
|Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2012 10:49 pm Post subject: Masters Of The Universe Classics: Demo-Man
|Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,
Continuing my look at the Masters of the Universe Classics figures, particularly the ones made available for the Mad Matty March sale, it's time we take a look at the character known as Demo-Man.
"But who," you may ask, as well you should, "is this Demo-Man you speak of?"
Demo-Man is based on the original concept art by Mark Taylor for what would become the main villain of the MOTU line just as Vikor was based on the original concept art for what would become He-Man.
Demo-Man comes in the standard MOTUC packaging with the back of the box showing off other figures in the line as well as a bio for the chracter. Rather than simply release the figure labeled as a concept character like the Star Wars figures did, Mattel opted to work the character into the actual storyline. Frankly though this guy makes a good case for why they should have gone the other route.
Did someone fall asleep on the keyboard? I don't even have the slightest clue how to pronounce that real name! The next problem is one that has occurred a few times in the bios, and that is the bio tells us little to nothing about the actual character! We already knew about how Demo-Man was a creature from Despondos Hordak merged with Keldor, but we knew, and still know, nothing of who he was before that. For that matter the merger is a concept that really doesn't sit well with many fans myself included. This bio confirms a fear many had that Demo-Man was influencing Skeletor's evil instead of it being Keldor himself. Besides that, the merger was supposed to explain why Skeletor's arms and feet are more demonic looking but since Demo-Man doesn't have the same style it fails to add up.
And then there's the idea of Oo-Larr -obviously the early mini-comic wandering barbarian He-Man and not Adam- but that early Skeletor is the same guy? A bio for a new character needs to help sell it as an interesting addition to the line and I have to say I feel this one failed in that regard.
So what about the figure itself?
Demo-Man's sculpt captures the look of the concept art very closely. He is made of mostly the standard male buck, but introduces a few new pieces. He has brand new feet which feature some freaky clawed toes and also brings in a new lower leg sculpt that features a bare leg look. As such he is lacking a boot cuff articulation point, but does have all the other same as a normal figure. His head articulation is slightly hindered by the long beard when trying to look down but goes over the shoulders when looking to the side well.
He appears to have new forearms with the spiked bracelets glued on to the ends -which does make the overall arms longer. He has new hands with clawed fingertips.
One odd attention to detail is the small tuft of hair on the back of his armor. While the tuft is present in the artwork it kinda looks strange here since its part of the armor mold instead of the body.
His weapons, I will say are very cool. The scimitar is done in a slightly rusted metal look and detailed with lots of nicks on the blade indicating heavy use in battle. His morning star is done in the same deco. The "rope" handle is made of a stiff solid plastic so it holds the curved look, but this is actually a good thing as it looks quite cool both when hanging and when posed swinging over his head.
Now he also comes with a couple extra heads. Sort of. Before SDCC 2011 Mattel announced, as a teaser hint that, an upcoming figure would have three heads. Speculation ran wild and naturally no one thought that it would be Demo-Man. And small wonder as the extra heads are not for him actually. (Frankly I feel this was a big let down after such a hype inducing teaser)
The first "extra head" is based on the skull with the viking helmet seen at Demo-Man's feet in the concept artwork. By the way the helmet is slightly different than Vikor's so no this is not his skull. This is clearly meant to be more of a display accessory. It is actually designed so it can be put on a figure body, but with the smaller size and missing lower jaw it just looks ridiculous. If it did have a lower jaw it could work as a Dark Rider from the Filmation She-Ra episode. As it is though, it's best just left lying on the ground.
The other head is a new Skeletor head. It does make sense to include with this figure as it could be taken from the bio that Skeletor originally looked like this until he gained full control of Demo-Man inside him and altered to the more familiar look we know today. (Or just because the link between Demo-Man and Skeletor exists at all)
The head, dubbed the Alcala Skeletor head, is based on Skeletor's appearance in the early, early, early, Pre-Filmation mini-comics -specifically the ones drawn by artist Alfredo Alcala. The look is rather demonic and inhuman with abnormally large eye sockets that have actual red balls sculpted in instead of simply painted like the standard Skeletor head. The nose hole is also a bit larger and the teeth are oversized and misshapen in a way that would make Mo-Larr very rich to fix. The hood itself is also shaped different. The entire sculpt perfectly captures the look from how Alcala drew Skeletor.
..... I HATE how Alcala drew Skeletor.
I understand the idea at the time was that Skeletor was a demon from another dimension thus why he wouldn't look exactly human, nevertheless I just plain do not like this look for him one bit! I make no secret of my extreme distaste for the Pre-Filmation era storyline so I considered that this was the reason for my not liking the Alcala Skeletor, but no. I have no problem with most of Alcala's other work. The way he drew Sorceress in the mini-comic "The Obelisk" is gorgeous even with the solid white outfit, but the same mini-comic still has ugly Skeletor so clearly my issue is with the Skeletor art alone. I find it to be a hideous interpretation of Skeletor and not in a "cool ugly" way. I know there are many fans, even those who don't care for the Pre-Filmation story, who still really like this look, but I am not one of them. This head does nothing for me. Good for those of you who wanted it, but if I'm gonna have a new Skeletor head sculpt make it Filmation style, or just leave it alone.
Demo-Man on the whole is just not a figure that particularly appeals to me. I think a large part of it is I have no nostalgic attachment to this character. That's not to say I object to concept characters being brought into the line. I was extactic to get He-Ro, I was happy to get Fearless Photog and I'd love to see some other concept art characters like the Horde mummy. But He-Ro and Photog I had something of a connection to. They never had figures but they still existed to a degree. Demo-Man we had nothing for so he had to be made to look cool and/or have a great character story. The character story I don't like at all and the figure, while not as bad as I first thought, isn't growing on me the way Vikor did. He's not without potential, but I'm just not that in to him. I think if he had a cooler color deco or had been introduced as a new individual villain, like maybe Vikor's arch enemy I would like him better. Maybe in time I'll learn to like him more but for now he's one of those guys I own because I'm a completiest for MOTU -I must have every figure even if I'm not that fond of it.
Demo-Man is really one for the hard core completists. If you are interested in him he's available now on MattyCollector.com as part of the Mad Matty March sale and is therefore marked down 10% off the normal price. Supplies are limited of course but frankly I think this guy will last longer than a lot of the others.
I apologize for seeming so negative in this review, but hey not all of them can be gems. I'll do a figure I really like next time to help counter it and cheer up. Until then, Good Journey.
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