Club Grayskull – Trap Jaw Review

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I’m reviewing this Trap Jaw figure before my retrospect of the same character in the Masters of the Universe Classics line. The reason why is I’m trying to do retrospects of those figures in order of release. This Trap Jaw figure is a newly released (April, 2016) figure in the Club Grayskull line so I’m going to try and stay current with new figures (although they take forever to ship to Canada. Digital River blows goats). For those who don’t know, Club Grayskull is a new line that you can only get from Mattycollector.com and it features figures that are strictly based from the Filmation He-Man and the Masters of the Universe cartoon from the 80s.

Trap Jaw is the second figure released in the line so far. He-Man was the first, naturally, and I should have a catch-up review of him shortly. Trap Jaw went on sale in April and sold out quickly.

First thing that I’ll comment on is the packaging. The MOTUC line had constant packaging throughout its 8 year line, which is fantastic for MOC collectors. For this line, they decided to go back to the drawing board and create something more collector friendly with something that would pay homage to the classic cartoon.

You can see that when you get the figures in the mail for this line, they have a slipcase showing the front of Castle Grayskull. For fans of the cartoon, there’s no guessing what toy line this is for. On the back of the slipcase you get….   The only downside is that these figures are not shipped in a mailer box like the MOTUC or the Collector’s Choice lines. If you want to keep your figures mint in the box/package, then you may see dings, cuts, and/or scratches on the slipcases when you open the box. I’ve been lucky with He-Man and Trap Jaw and my slipcases for the ones I open and the ones I keep MIB have been perfect.

Once the slipcase is off, you get to see the figure in a window-box style packaging. I really like the graphics around the figure and I think people that just buy one of these to display MIB will be quite happy. You can open this figure up, get it out with no issue, display it loose for a while and then put it back in the box without much hassle. I’m so happy that Mattel did this as it’s something many people have asked for.

On the back of the package, you can see a cartoon image of Trap Jaw. I’m not sure if this is a still or cell from the animated show, but with the picture of He-Man on his package, people said it looked off. This picture looks like a great match from the cartoon to me, but I really haven’t put on my DVDs or looked at stills online to really try and compare or nit-pick the finest detail.

Once you get Trap Jaw out to start display him, you see right away that he’s on the same buck as most of the MOTUC line. The differences are found in the overall approach to the figure (and figures in this line).

The details on the body and paint app minimal, but it captures the look of the Filmation cartoon. The details on his arm are lacking and plain, just like his belt. The legs have the same armour/oval detailing we’ve seen before, but we have some shin armour, too. It’s plain but the bright pink draws your eye to them.

The head sculpt is spot on. There’s no doubt that this is the Trap Jaw straight out of the cartoon. His jaw is articulated to get the open and close action you desire! I know that many people have been hit with the “derpy eye” syndrome. My figure’s left eye is a little off and the one I kept in the box is a little better. They’re not perfect, but for the price we’re paying for these, this is unacceptable. This has been an issue since last year with many figures and they aren’t resolving it.

His weapon arm isn’t cartoon accurate – it’s longer than it should be. Another thing that I don’t like about it is that it does not have an elbow joint which makes poses with the weapon pretty static. I know they were looking to do figures with minimal tooling, but this isn’t acceptable to me.

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No extra details on the gun AND no elbow articulation? Unacceptable even for a minimalist figure. What is this? Playmate’s TMNT line?

 

Besides his standard gun weapon, the other two accessories/weapons he comes with are his energy bow and his more comical fly swatter. I think it’s great they added the comedy item as it’ll make for some amusing photos. Imagine Ram-Man getting taken out by that thing!

You can see from the pictures how the weapons are molded in the same colour, don’t have any added textures or paint applications. They are also pretty flimsy and when you’re inserting/removing them from Trap Jaw’s arm you need to be careful as they’re so tender, I’m sure some people will have more warping or stress lines will appear. Once again, not acceptable for a figure you’re paying over $20US for.

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You can take the accessories from the MOTUC Trap Jaw (and Roboto) and swap them out for this figure. The colours don’t match at all, but at least you have the option to do so. I’ve also included a picture of the MOTUC gun (well, the one that came in Roboto’s colours – another comparison shot is down below) and the one that comes with this figure.

 

The ankles for these new figures have been a source of contention in the collecting community. We were shown one thing when during SDCC when to prototypes were on display. Someone at Matty/Mattel decided to add ankles that have rocker joints to be able to move from side to side. While this is great for additional posing abilities, the actual execution is poor. There is a large gap between the foot and the shin area. While Trap Jaw’s doesn’t seem that bad, it’s very apparent on He-Man (who I’ll be reviewing next). Why change what wasn’t broken in the first place?

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Here’s a quick pic comparing the MOTUC Trap Jaw and this one from the Club Grayskull line. Quite a difference! Just think: we paid the exact same price for these figures and look a the difference! I don’t want to seem like I’m bitching, because I know the dialed-down approach to the line was made clear before I subscribed, but there are still little details, textures or paint applications that COULD be put in without taking away from a pure Filmation look.

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Overall, this figure really looks like he stepped out of the cartoon. Once you really get it into your head that these figures aren’t supposed to have the depth and detail of the MOTUC/Collector’s Choice lines, you’ll appreciate them even more. I can’t wait to have a shelf dedicated to this line and see a few more of the figures all lined up together.

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*The upcoming figures this year (released every two months) are: Skeletor (June), Evilseed (Subscribers only in August, I think), Beast Man (August), Evil-Lyn (October), and Clawful (December). I have a subscription, so you’ll see me cover all these figures.

Unfortunately Digital River (the distributor of all figures on Mattycollector) takes their sweet ass time getting these things to Canada.  It usually takes four weeks from the time I get a shipping notice to actually arrive here. That’s what you get when you send packages to Sweden first instead of just having them go across a border that’s on the same continent. No wonder their international shipping is so high, but I digress.

 

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