Joined: 18 Dec 2005
|Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2015 3:20 pm Post subject: Masters of the Universe Classics: Buzz Saw Hordak
|Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,
When we got the promise that all figures from the vintage line would receive Classics versions by the end of 2015 it became a topic of debate over whether the variants should be part of it. Well they were and that included the version of Hordak that, without action features, left many pondering how he would be made worthwhile. Was it achieved? Let's take a look at Buzz Saw Hordak.
Buzz Saw Hordak comes in the standard MOTUC blister card package complete with the Evil Horde logo sticker on the front. I have no idea why Buzz Saw was put in quotes though. The back of the box shows off other figures in the line, including the upcoming Dragstor, and presents a bio for this version of Hordak.
The part about Hordak getting changed and gaining his Buzz Saw powers from Central Tower comes from the vintage mini comic, and it made no real sense back then either. I should point out back then it had nothing to do with time travel or lacking the Cosmic Key. Hordak found his evil nature being altered by the tower's magic (he was actually being nice and friendly to He-Man!) so he fled outside and tried to destroy the tower only to find his hurricane powers were gone. Enraged he attacked He-Man and during the battle his buzz saw powers emerged seemingly on instinct. Hordak then withdrew so he could take time to learn about this new ability. See now that's what I don't get, why would Central Tower take away Hordak's hurricane powers, start turning him nice, and at the same time give him the ability to shoot a deadly buzz saw out of his chest? I know Central Tower is supposed to be neutral but that's hardly a balance between good and evil.
The rest of the bio refers to the crappy story presented in the Classics mini comics, and I've already discussed in length how that sucks so let's move on to the figure itself now.
At first glance Buzz Saw Hordak looks almost identical to the first release Hordak. And honestly for the most part he is. The majority of his body is the same sculpt and as such he has the same articulation. Head is on a ball joint, only slightly hindered by the collar, Shoulders and hips on ball joints; swivels at the biceps, wrists, waist, and boot cuts; standard joints at the elbows, knees and ankles. For a weapon he includes the white Horde Crossbow that is the same as the one that came with Spirit of Hordak.
Now there are some subtle paint differences between the two figures here. Buzz Saw Hordak's cape is a brighter red while his face is a lighter shade of off white, not as solid white as the SDCC Invasion Hordak, but lighter than the more cream colored standard Hordak. It should be noted vintage Hordak figures had these face color variants too. The trim on his collar, boots, and armor is done in a glossy black instead of the silver of the regular Hordak. Also his belt is more of a silver color instead of the gun metal grey, plus he uses the standard furry loincloth piece instead of the longer Preternian style. All in all though, he does still look almost identical to the standard Hordak. The vintage one did too though (to the point that many e-bay listings claim to be selling the Buzz Saw variant when it's really just the normal one) the key difference is the torso.
Buzz Saw Hordak has a hollow torso sculpt that opens up to reveal his namesake weaponry. To open it you basically grab the top of the bat logo wing and pull it down. Inside is the buzz saw which is a separate piece and can come out. It can even be gripped in his hand by the rod in the middle. Otherwise it basically just sits there. Naturally, because of the way the chest is constructed, the figure does not have the ab crunch feature.
The vintage figure had an action feature where the saw plugged in and there was a switch on his back to make it shoot out. (actually had a good range too) The other difference is in the belt. On the vintage figure the belt had a different design with a triangle logo instead of the normal three dots. The Classics version did not incorporate this difference and fails to match up in that regard. Otherwise though it is a faithful recreation, and although the saw does not fire, the open chest does help make this version a bit more special. At the same time though it raises disappointment.
You'll recall one of the complaints with the Classics Rio Blast was that he did not have the hollow torso like his vintage figure. More to the point his chest flap did not close fully and looked off. Getting the hollow torso on Buzz Saw Hordak makes it all the more upsetting that this was not given to Rio. An argument can be made that, with all of Rio's other new tooling, it wasn't in the budget and also that Hordak getting the feature is an example of Mattel listening to fan's complaints and getting things right on later figures. Except for the fact that it almost wasn't.
Apparently Buzz Saw Hordak was not going to have the hollow torso initially. Mattel design took a look at the figure later and saw they had unused tooling budget left from him so they went back and redid the figure to make it better and more appealing. Great huh? But wait, didn't Toyguru say they were going to do something to make BSH more appealing to buyers before he left? If it wasn't going to be the torso what was it? And why was there money allotted for the figure's sku that wasn't used for him? The answer is that Buzz Saw Hordak was originally going to include the snake torso for Battle Armor King Hiss but after Toyguru left Mattel completely forgot about it until they were reminded at SDCC. By then it was too late, the budget to cover the Hiss torso had been used to make the new Hordak torso. So, while the Hiss torso is getting released now as an out of sub item, the promise that subscribers would definitely get it is broken and we still end up with a Hordak variant that wasn't really needed.
Like many fans I was hoping Buzz Saw Hordak would be given some major design upgrades to make him stand out more from the first Hordak. As it is he's great for anyone that needs a Hordak and missed out on the first release, but otherwise seems like waste of time to have included. True he was needed to fill the promise to do all the vintage figures, but personally I wouldn't have cared if that promise had excluded the variants. As of right now Buzz Saw Hordak is still available on Mattycollector.com if you want him. Until next time, Good Journey.
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