Joined: 18 Dec 2005
|Posted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:37 pm Post subject: Masters Of The Universe Classics: Eternian Palace Guards
|Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,
The Mad Matty March sale is almost over and I'm sorry I couldn't shell these reviews out any faster, but at any rate we're down to the last one. (Not my last review ever just the last of the MMM selection) The first army builder pack for the line; Eternian Palace Guards!
The guards come in a 2-pack window box about the same size as Battle Cat's box. Like most packaging in the line the back shows off other figures in the line, and yes includes a bio.
After that long rant I made on Battleground Teela's bio you'll be happy to know I don't really have anything much to say about this one. At least not at the moment. The part about Clamp Champ taking over Duncan's duty here... we'll get to that at a more appropriate time. And to be fair in the vintage continuity Clamp Champ was often portrayed as personal bodyguard to King Randor so it fits for him to recruit other guards. I could mention how I can't recall any incident where it was really the guards who saved the day and compare them to Star Trek redshirts, but I don't expect a bio to portray them so negatively. As for Lt. Spector, again we'll discuss that more at a later time. On the whole the bio is simple and true to form so let's move on to the figures themselves.
You get two bodies in the pack both of which are the same. They use the standard male buck and have all the standard articulation. The forearms are the kind with both wrist cuffs introduced with Tri-Klops -not that it matters much with the armor- and the boots use the Keldor mold in both tops and feet.
The figure's armor on the left arm and leg are the exact same mold as was used for Man-At-Arms. It should be noted though they are done in a similar but slightly lighter shade, so if you were planning to give Duncan the armor for his other side note it doesn't match up color wise exactly. (Course you could swap out the other armor but the chest armor is still a different shade) The armor for the right side is a new mold but is perfectly symmetrical to the existing pieces, with one minor insignificant difference, the clip peg on the new leg armor is centered in the back while the older one was more to the side. Not an issue for me, especially since it's hidden in the back, but worth pointing out.
The armor on the arms are two separate pieces so as to not interfere with the elbow joint, though the shoulder pad can get in the way a bit when raising the arm. However, they are loose enough to be repositioned. All the armor can be removed via clip pegs or the arm pieces can actually simply be slipped off over the hand. Don't worry, they are tight enough that they won't fall off on their own, but still loose enough to shift around or remove.
The chest armor is made of a harder plastic very similar to the vintage line, or more to the point, the Classics Battle Armor figures. The back of the armor features storage clips for the weapons much like Man-At-Arms did. The armor comes off via the snaps at the top and bottom just like the Battle Armor figures, and like those figures the armor features interchangeable chest plates.
You get four plates in the set. There's one with an eagle design meant to be a Lieutenant emblem. The other three are regular rank soldiers. One is normal and the other two feature various degrees of battle damage. The plates pop in and out of the armor just like Battle Armor He-Man and Skeletor, but note they are a different size and shape so are not interchangeable with those figures' plates.
You also get two face guard pieces that clip into the helmets. This really opens up the army building capability as you can hide the faces to create more individual soldiers. In case you're wondering while the design of the guard's helmets matches Man-At-Arms, Duncan's helmet does not have the holes, so no you can't give him one of the face guards. (but he's kinda got one already in his chest armor design anyway) One thing I found you can do is position it so it's not fully in and covering and thus becomes a chin guard, much like the picture shown on the bio card. Which itself is a screen-shot from the 200X cartoon so this look is something seen before. I don't think this was intended, but it's a rather cool bonus feature that further expands army building capabilities.
And of course the main thing that really sells the army builder status is (as you've pretty much already seen) the four, yes four, heads. You get two human and two of other races. The first is a black man (don't get PC on me, there's no Africa or America on Eternia) Mattel has said this is not Clamp Champ in case you were wondering. The other human is Toyguru. No really, the second human head is actually modeled after brand manager Scott "Toyguru" Neitlich, though without his glasses. And yes, it is this head, plus the eagle chest plate, that make Lt. Spector.
The third head is a cat like Qadian same as Chief Carnivus and the last one is of a reptilian design that I'm not sure what race it's supposed to be. It doesn't quite look like a Caligar (Whiplash's race) but Snake Men are bad guys. It could be a Repton I suppose, or maybe it's meant to be a human guard who fell victim to the Serpent's Ring, though again that also turns people evil. Whatever he is it adds more diversity to the ranks.
Of course an army needs weapons and you get a lot in the set. The weapons are all new and modeled after ones that came with the vintage Castle Grayskull weapons rack. Okay, technically we have seen the short ax before with Buzz-Off but keep in mind the guards were originally slated to come out in the same month so the mold was made for both at the same time. Also the mace looks like the one that came with Moss Man (and in the vintage line was the same mold) but Classics Moss Man's mace was made to appear wooden with vines on it. This is a new mold designed to look like metal. Though I only put one of each in the photo you actually get two long poleaxes and two shields. The shields come in the package already clipped onto the figures' arms and I should note when I took mine off it left a small paint smear so be careful. A very good selection overall, but I do wish they had also included a gun, even if they left out one of the poleaxes to do so. The bio mentions the guards using blasters so I really feel one should have been put in. They didn't even need new tooling, Webstor's gun mold would have worked.
When I first heard we were getting an army builder pack I was hoping for Horde Troopers. While I still am anxiously wishing for those to show up soon, I must say the guards are a very great set. The wide selection of weapons, armor pieces and multiple heads really create many possibilities for various solders and I think everyone is going to want at least two sets so they can display every head and armor piece. And with the next army builder set coming this year you'll want to be ready to bolster forces for epic battles.
The Eternian Palace Guards 2-Pack is available now on Mattycollector.com as part of the Mad Matty March sale and are marked down 10% so now's a good time to grab them while you can Good Luck and until next time, Good Journey!
SUPPORT MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE CLASSICS
"I HAVE THE POWER!!.... the power is mine, not yours. Thanks for asking."