Joined: 18 Dec 2005
|Posted: Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:51 pm Post subject: Masters of the Uiverse Classics: Sorceress
|Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,
Time for a review of a figure I've been looking forward to because I love this character so much. She was withheld from us for three years before finally being announced... then delayed a month from her scheduled release. But at long last she has arrived! (Then I had to put the review on hold for a month to do the ones for the Mad Matty March sale -I figured review the ones that are available first) Let's take a look at; The Sorceress!
Sorceress comes in the standard MOTUC packaging with the back of the box showing off other figures in the line, and like all figures this year features the 30th anniversary logo, and presenting a bio for the character in this new continuity. Interestingly it just says Sorceress and not THE Sorceress. There is also a picture on the side featuring her semi-action feature with her wings.
We'll discuss the wings in a moment. First let's look at the bio.
Okay first, I am very glad they used the real name Teela'na. I was scared this would be a Filmation only name and off limits. Also I feel a certain amount of personal satisfaction in the spelling. I've seen it spelled Teelana, Teela Na, Teela-na, and pretty much every way possible. I always spelled it Teela'na so seeing this as the official spelling makes me happy. Further on the good and Filmation, the first half of the bio follows the origin of the Sorceress from the Filmation episode... "Origin of The Sorceress".
But then we come to the clone stuff. I've already mentioned how I hate Teela being a clone, (and why would Skeletor need to create a magical bride to produce an heir when HE ALREADY HAD BOTH?) and now the Sword of Protection is a clone too? She created it by cloning the original Power Sword. What? She cloned the sword? She... CLONED... the SWORD....
So back story on Sorceress herself=good the rest not so much. At least they don't mention the big issue I ranted on in Battleground Teela's bio. You know the one. On to the figure itself.
Sorceress uses the 2.0 female buck in her legs and pelvic piece, the standard female hands and I believe her biceps. She seems to have the same feet as She-Ra, they don't have the rocker joint like Teela, but other than that she has all new tooling. Her torso is very much like the 2.0 standard buck, so she does have the waist swivel and the turned side issue doesn't look as bad as Battleground Teela. You'll notice though her undershirt is sculpted onto the torso. There is also a indent in her back where the center section of her wings attach, they are glued on though. She features new shoulders which is where the rest of her wings attach. Her forearms are new with a sleeved look and her boot tops are new featuring feathered cuffs instead of furry, and they do have the swivel articulation point.
Sorceress' outfit features a very well done feathery sculpt and is made of a softer plastic so her skirt does not interfere with leg movement. Her head is fantastic. Her face sculpt is simply beautiful and the headdress perfectly captures the look we know and love, unlike the vintage figure's whose headdress' beak pointed up. The headdress does limit the head movement a bit as long hair would, however it's a softer plastic so it is more pliable and therefore is not as bad as a solid hair sculpt.
The figure is absolutely beautiful and I love how her overall look was captured. The one issue I have with her involves her wings so let's talk about them. The detailing on the feathered appearance is well sculpted and the paint job is excellent in my opinion. You'll notice the inside of her wings feature the blue tips when traditionally only the outside did and the inside was solid orange. To me though, this still looks very good and actually makes more sense and seems more like a real feathered cape would be. From the front the wings look quite nice, however when we turn her to the side or back, then a very noticeable problem emerges.
The wings are made of a solid plastic and composed of multiple pieces so as to create the folding or spreading feature. The main tail of her wings is attached to her back and each arm has three segments. The segments are all piled on top of each other over a peg on each of her shoulders then held in place with a pin. The result are these oversized drums on her arms.
This is how her sort of action feature works. By moving her arms up, with her arms spread to the side, the wings spread out. Really though this is just gravity doing its thing. The pieces move up with the arms and fall into position. Sorceress looks fantastic from the front in this iconic pose for her, but this is one of the only poses you can get. While it is probably the pose most people are going to use anyway it is rather disappointing that our selection is so limited. The high level of articulation, which is supposed to give many display options is one of the main draws of the line after all.
Aside from the drum issue the wings severely limit what you can do with the arms. They go up with the arm and stick out like the blades on the Guyver armor. (look it up if you don't know what I'm talking about, it would take too long to explain and is irrelevant to MOTUC -good series though) This keeps Sorceress from folding her arms. Wanted to pose her hugging her daughter Teela? Not gonna happen.
I think the main problem here is they chose to give her wings that were like her vintage figure or her 200X incarnation. In those cases the wings were attached to her back.
That might have actually been a better route to take. If the wings were on her back so they didn't hinder arm movement the problem would not have been so severe. Even if they still had the big drums they would have been hidden better and more poses would be available. They could have even found a way to not have such big drums. The vintage figure had a long headdress in the back that hid it. Really though I'm very glad they didn't copy the vintage headdress as it didn't look exactly right and the Classics' head does.
In the Filmation cartoon Sorceress' wings in human form were really just a feathered cloak attached to the arms of her outfit. I think this is what should have been done with a super soft plastic. (or I have no objection to cloth) Sorceress was very radically redesigned for the 200X series so it's not even a really fair comparison here. One thing is that in 200X they were actual wings that functioned. That is in the continuity, the staction of course couldn't move at all. (Also note that it was implied the wings were part of her costume and controlled by magic, not part of her anatomy) This is different enough I think it warrants a full variant figure. To be fair the different color scheme was not the Horsemen's original intention. They had planned her to have a more classic color outfit but had submitted black and white drawings and the animators made their own choices. A classic color variant staction was released as a rare exclusive and you can see the difference it makes.
For accessories Classics Sorceress includes her staff done in a nice solid plastic and given a pearled white paint job. She also includes Zoar, this time done in Sorceress colors with the white head and blue wingtips. Thankfully, they did include a perch for Zoar this time and also included the armor, though I prefer to display her without it.
Despite the rather large issue with the wings, Sorceress is a beautiful figure and a fantastic representation of this beloved iconic character. I consider Sorceress a must have character, which makes it all the more depressing that both her vintage figure and stactions are so hard to get ahold of, so it's great that she finally got a larger release even if it's not entirely perfect. I would like them to come back and do a 2.0 Sorceress with a feathered cloak instead of hard plastic wings, and while they're at it maybe give her a spell casting hand. Even if like Bubble Power She-Ra she has a different head and you need both versions for the ultimate look.
In the meantime this is a beautiful sculpt. She looks great in her iconic wing spread pose so many will want to display her this way anyway. Sorceress is now sold out on Mattycollector.com so you'll have to hit the secondary market, or you could also wait and try for the Temple of Darkness version (which is the same mold in different colors) in December, because any MOTU collection needs Sorceress. (A living breathing Teela'na Sorceress bio writers!) Good Luck, Good Hunting and, until next time, Good Journey.
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