Joined: 18 Dec 2005
|Posted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:30 pm Post subject: Masters Of The Universe Classics: Moss Man
|Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,
Continuing the reviews of the MOTUC figures available during the Mad Matty March sale, there are quite a few villains in the lineup. But there are also some heroic warriors so it's time to look at one of my favorites; Moss Man.
Moss Man comes packaged in the standard MOTUC blister pack. You can see in the package that he comes with two heads and Mattel opted to place his vintage style head on the figure in the box. If I was a MOC collector I'd be a bit upset as I like the other one better, though I can kind of understand the consistency reason for doing this. We'll discuss the heads more in just a bit.
The back of the box, as always, shows off other figures in the line, and presents a bio card for the character.
When this guy first appears in the 200X MYP cartoon Orko asks, "Who are you?" to which he replies, "Most folks call me Moss Man." Well with a real name like that I can see why! This is one of the times when a character being thousands of years old is okay with me. The idea of him being a nature god really works with his plant man status. And that's god as in a powerful immortal being, not creator of the universe. To quote the Percy Jackson books, "God -capital G God, that's a different matter altogether. We shan't get into the metaphysical."
So yeah I like this bio all right, on to the actual figure.
Now just like the vintage figure, Moss Man is the exact same mold as Beast Man, except that they opted to give him the longer furry loincloth from King Grayskull, something that became a running theme in characters who were around in Preternian times. The main difference, of course, is he is covered in flocking. Yes he is in fact flocked! Moss Man just wouldn't be right if he wasn't fuzzy. Even more so than Panthor.
Mattel did an awesome job covering this guy with a fairly thick coating of forrest green, grass like fuzz. And that flocking is secured on very well. It doesn't flake off like you may worry about. Around his articulation joints the flocking is pulled back a bit so as not to interfere with the joints or rub off. The paint job on the body underneath is done in a green with brown wash so it maintains the plant look all over. This was an amazing job and really well done. (and goes to show that it would've worked on Panthor!)
Now about the two heads. The first is, like the vintage figure, Beast Man's head repainted and flocked. The second head is based more on his artwork, and to some degree cartoon and 200X look. It presents a simian like face with a gentler, kinder look. I prefer this head because not only is it a more unique appearance, but it makes him look less savage and more the heroic guardian of nature he is supposed to be.
Another note on the flocking and heads. There is no flocking on the ears. When Mattel showed the final product it had flocking on the ears and many fans felt they should not. Mattel made the change, however a few flocked eared versions had already gone through production. On the original sale date both versions were put up on the site allowing you to pick. Flocked ears sold out in like 8 seconds. Officially the sell out time is marked as 8 minutes, but friends I was there. On sale day I got on the site with a minute before sale time and the page said "Coming Soon" I clicked refresh and it was now straight up on the hour and it said "Sold Out". Mattel has stated that any reissue will only be the unflocked ears so if you want the rare variant you need to hit the secondary market and be prepared for greatly inflated prices.
Moss Man features a brand new accessory in a bandolier designed to look like it's made of vines. It can easily be slipped off if you want to display him without it, but I like it myself. On the side is a small pouch and a sheath for his knife. These do not come off the bandolier, but the knife can be removed from the sheath and fits in Moss Man's hand nicely.
The design has a cool sort of primitive stone blade appearance. Moss Man also features his classic mace, however this time it has been given extra details to make it look as though it is made of wood and covered with vines. I love fleshed out details like this in the line. It's a perfect example of how the figures are made to look like the old toys, but still adds something new to them.
Now Moss Man also has what I guess you could sort of call an action feature. That is if smells count. The figure has been given a pine scent as a nod to the vintage figure. Thing is, I don't remember the vintage figure having a scent. Every source says it did, and many a fan will contest to this, however I went through 3 vintage Moss Man figures as a kid and I don't remember him smelling at all. Now everyone does say, unlike Stinkor, Moss Man's scent eventually disappeared entirely so it's not like I can check a vintage figure today for it.
At any rate, Classics Moss Man has an undeniable scent. When I first got the figure it was almost overwhelming. You can smell him even before removing the packaging. (though keep in mind the bubble has air holes on the sides) It was so strong at first, to me it smelled more like Vicks vaporub than pine. For the first couple days I could smell him from the shelf as soon as I walked in the room. Soon enough though the smell faded, but it's still there to a degree. Here, two years later, I have to actually pick him up and sniff to smell the scent, but it is there and has lessened to where it is clearly piney. It's not unpleasant, but it does have me a bit concerned about how strong Stinkor is going to be!
Next to his vintage figure you can see how well the look was captured and updated. The attention to detail goes right to the eyes, which are painted as though he's looking to the side for some reason -just like the vintage.
And here's the 200X version, which I haven't removed from the box because it's a rare exclusive. Not super rare, but you had to do some work to get him. The 200X Moss Man was also just a repainted Beast Man with flocking thrown on. (His mace was a repaint of Mekaneck's though) The figure was available as a special mail away offer from Mattel. Buy three figures and send away for this exclusive. Sounds simple and a good deal. Catch was instead of just sending in the proof of purchases, you had to send in a copy of the receipt. Notice I used the singular term. All three figures had to be bought AT THE SAME TIME. And I'm sure it was no small coincidence that this offer popped up during a slow sales period where the store shelves were jammed up with unmoving do to being overproduced, Smash Blade He-Man and Spin Blade Skeletor. Now the Horsemen and Mattel were planning to do a more unique looking Moss Man, that actually looked like his MYP cartoon appearance, but never got to him before the line ended.
Still the longer loincloth and wrist bracers on the Classics version have a 200X look to them.
Moss Man was one of my favorites as a kid. Why did I go through 3 then? Because I kept playing with him outside and his camouflage worked too well and I couldn't find him! Won't be making that mistake again. Classics Moss Man is an excellent figure and I am very pleased with him. Plus I am so happy with how they managed to work the flocking out. He just wouldn't be the same without it.
Moss Man is available now on Mattycollector.com as part of the Mad Matty March sale and is thus marked down 10%. The sale lasts through the 20th so grab him while you can. Until next time, Good Journey!
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