Joined: 18 Dec 2005
|Posted: Sat Mar 03, 2012 2:16 am Post subject: Masters Of The Universe Classics: Hordak
|Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,
As the 30th Anniversary of Masters of the Universe continues Mattel has launched a special March Madness sale featuring several MOTUC figures re-released at discounted prices. By a coincidence, one of the available figures is one I received a request to review next so wish granted. Let's take a look at Hordak!
Hordak comes in the standard MOTUC packaging and also features a special "Evil Horde" logo sticker on the plastic bubble. Hordak was the first Horde figure released in the line and all subsequent Horde members have included it as well.
The back of the box shows off other figures in the line as well as a bio for Hordak. Something to note is on the original release Hordak's sub-title was listed as "Evil Leader of the Evil Horde" instead of the traditional "Ruthless Leader". Thankfully this redundant use of redundancy was fixed on the reissue.
The only major issue I have with this bio is the real name. Seriously? Hordak's real name is Hector? It's like the writer had just watched the third Pirates of the Caribbean film and decided to repeat the humorous reveal of Barbossa's first name. Mattel's stance is that Hordak is "obviously not a real name". Oh but Zodac is? Or more to the point, later on Sy-Klone's real name was Sy-Klone?!? Even if we accept that Hordak is not his real name, a better choice could have been made. They could have even simply said "Real Name: unknown." That would have been fitting.
Anyway, everything else is fitting with previous continuities so no problems there. (later on there were some connected problems that surfaced in other bios but we'll address those when we come to them) The "second born heir" line is obviously a setup for Horde Prime, something not everyone is keen on, but I'm okay with that overall. I can't pass completely fair judgement until Horde Prime's bio is revealed. On to the figure itself.
Hordak uses many of the same parts of the standard buck. He does feature all the same articulation points including his ball jointed head. I point this out because for the first time Hordak's head is a separate piece from his cowl. I'm somewhat embarrassed to admit that when I first got my vintage Hordak figure as a kid I didn't realize till later it was a cowl and thought it was supposed to be part of his head! On that note the detailing and paint job are extremely well done on both giving his head a more fleshed out and sinister look, plus the silver trim on the cowl really adds to the overall appearance. Now while the cowl is separate from his armor, the cape is molded to the cowl and is made of a slightly thick and ridged plastic. This causes it to be very inflexible and can hinder posing to some degree as it not only gets in the way sometimes, but can also add weight pulling the figure back just a bit. It's not horrible, but needs to be noted.
You'll notice Hordak has a longer furry loincloth piece than the standard buck. This was actually first seen on King Grayskull and was later used on Moss Man making it a running theme on characters who lived in Preternia times. New pieces introduced are his gloved forearms and hands as well as his boots featuring the Horde emblem and new feet as well. His armband is a separate piece from his arm but is not designed to come off.
Something else new is Hordak's lower torso which introduced the "flat ab" buck to the line.
When this was first introduced it caused quite some controversy as several fans felt it made his armor look like some kind of belly shirt or sports bra. Once you get it in hand however it's really not that bad and I think it was largely the major change that threw people off. Once it was used a few more times the complaining died away. The reason for it was to allow a fully armored torso look without sacrificing the ab-crunch articulation point. Many fans felt they would rather have the ab-crunch hindered than a figure with flat abs. Honestly I feel it really only looks odd when the figure's armor is off so how often is that going to be an issue?
Hordak comes with his staff modeled similar to his 200X staff and his crossbow, which features a nicely detailed update to the vintage design. It's done in a almost metallic black, which upset some fans who wanted it white like the vintage. A silver one was released with the Weapons Pack but still didn't satisfy everyone. Personally though I rather prefer the more realistic metal colors.
Hordak also comes with a little pack-in creature. This bat-like demon thing is something of an amalgam of the bat emblem shield that came with the vintage figure and strapped to his arm, and Hordak's little demon lackey Imp from the cartoon series. At the time Mattel did not have the rights to make an actual Imp as he is a Filmation character, however looking at the face sculpt of this unnamed demon you can see traces of Imp- albeit updated to look more sinister instead of annoying. Really, picture this thing painted blue and you can really see the Imp inspiration there. In all fairness it's thought that Imp may have been inspired by the Hordak figure's bat shield in the first place, so this was a great route to go. The creature has no articulation but still looks great sitting on Hordak's arm. The legs are designed to clip right on to his wrist and he stays put nicely.
I would have liked to show a comparison to the vintage bat shield, but sadly my vintage figure is missing his.
He's also missing his cape, but still you can see how the design of the figure was stuck to and the details were drawn out.
Likewise you can see how the cape design and the staff are drawn from the 200X staction. While I kinda like the overall 200X design a bit more, the fact that the Classics figure has articulation gives it an edge
The Evil Horde characters have always been some of my absolute favorites from the Masters of the Universe line and this new Hordak is right up there. In my opinion this is an absolute must have.
Hordak is available now on Mattycollector.com as part of the Mad Matty March sale, which goes on through the 20th, and as such is marked at 10% off the normal price. Supplies are limited though so I strongly advise grabbing this guy while you can. Good Luck and until next time, Good Journey.
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