Masters of the Universe Classics Rewind – Dragon Blaster Skeletor

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We got a ton of He-Man and Skeletor variants in the vintage MOTU line.  Some were great and some were just so-so.  One of my favourites was Dragon Blaster Skeletor because even for me as a kid, this one was just so out there, it was cool.

Skeletor was a baddy hell bent on taking out He-Man and acquiring all the secrets of Castle Grayskull.  When I played with the figure as a child, he was the epitome of evil, until perhaps Hordak and King Hssss showed up to rival him.  That’s why the notion of Skeletor showing up in the line with a dragon attached to his back was so far out there, it was almost brilliant.  Did he really need a dragon?

The action feature for the vintage figure, for those not in the know, was all about spraying Skeletor’s foes with a paralyzing liquid from the dragon’s mouth.  You filled up the body with water and pressing down on the dragon’s head caused it to squirt out the water.  It was fun to do and I sprayed figures of all lines with it and I think I tormented my younger sister with it from time to time (sorry, sis).  Check out the old commercial for the vintage figure and tell me what kid wouldn’t have fun with this toy?  With the Classics line, though, there was no spraying action to be found.

Adam, over at Battle Ram Blog, actually did a recent feature on Dragon Blaster Skeletor. Make sure to go over there and give it a read.

The bio on the back of the packaging let’s us know that Skeletor created this new, magical armor with the dragon “infused” on the back.  How does one infuse a dragon? If it’s infused, why does it need the padlock? Why couldn’t the dragon bite Skeletor if it wanted to try and get away? I’m sure the padlock wasn’t to protect Skeletor’s enemies from the dragon.  It’s just odd!  It looks cool, but it makes no sense.   The rest of the bio fleshes out more of the story of Hordak’s rise on Eternia against all factions.

The figure is really awesome out of the packaging.  If I was just a mint in box collector, this would be one of the figures I would have bought an extra one of to have loose.  It’s pretty massive thanks the bulkier looking armour and due to the huge dragon on Skeletor’s back.

The dragons snaps into the back armor of the figure.  It’s odd to see that the chain can’t be removed and that’s a shame because it would have been neat to be able to have the dragon sit or lay down beside Skeletor if you wanted.

Thankfully, all the articulation on my figure holds up really well and the joints are still tight.  This is one of those figures where if it had loose legs or ankles, you’d be in trouble.  Even with the dragon, the figure balances relatively easy.

The head sculpt on this version of Skeletor is pretty clean and doesn’t have too much shadowing around the teeth.  I found the paint on the face was done really well, although the face overall looks brighter than past Skeletor releases.

I’m glad the metal chain was included and not replaced with a hard plastic.  It doesn’t slide through the middle of the armour like the vintage figure (from what I remember).  It attaches from one side to the padlock and the other side to the wrist clamp.

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As for the dragon’s head sculpt, I wanted something a little more ferocious.  I found it to look a bit too cartoon-like and animated.  I see a subtle hint on anime.  It’s not that it’s a terrible sculpt or anything, but I wanted something terrifying.  Yeah, the dragon is bearing its teeth and there’s no gap for liquid to come out, but I think it comes down to the eyes and top of the head.  It’s almost like the dragon IS just all teeth.  Perhaps it looks too punk-rock for me, too.  It could also be a combination of all of the above while I toss all my thoughts out on what could have been better.  I’d love to hear all your thoughts.

What I will give props for is the work on the sculpting of the dragon’s body, particularly the scales and the paint on it.  I will also reiterate that lots of work probably had to be done to make sure the figure could stand with this large addition to Skeletor’s back, so the engineering on the figure has to be applauded.

 

The only accessory the figure comes with is a full Power Sword.  It’s fitting because that’s what the vintage figure came with.  There’s not really anything else needed.

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Skeletor on his own can be a frightening sight for many on Eternia.  Give him a Power Sword and you’ve upped the ante and given those people more reason to worry.  Add the dragon and you’ll have many pissing themselves in fear.

With sword in hand, Skeletor does look very intimidating, and wickedly awesome, posed.  This is such a stellar looking figure.

 

For fun, I took the original MOTUC Skeletor to compare with DBS.  You can see noticeable differences with the skull sculpt and paint, the look of the loin leather, the paint on the belt, the skin tone, and the shin armour/feet.  I really adds even more variety to army of Skeletor figs us collectors have on our shelves, if having a dragon and alternate armour isn’t enough.

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Besides wanting a more intimidating look for the dragon, I don’t have a lot to complain about with this figure.  It’s fun, done well, it holds up today, and it was a lot of plastic for the $20-25 price tag we paid.  This is one of my favourite variants of the character and I’m glad the Four Horsemen/Matty Collector put the effort into it they did.

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