Joined: 18 Dec 2005
|Posted: Sun May 27, 2012 4:40 pm Post subject: Masters of the Universe Classics: Stinkor
|Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,
Some action figures are awesome, some just plain stink. And then there's the rare example that manages to do both! Today we look at the coolest skunk since Pepe Le Pew; Stinkor!
Stinkor comes in the standard MOTUC blister card pack although, unlike most figures, there are no air holes in the side of the plastic bubble. Apparently this was done to help lock in his scent. As the star burst on the front says, just like the original figure, Stinkor actually has a real smell. "It's fun!" Like all figures who come with multiple heads and/or 200X armor elements, the figure is packed out like the vintage with the original style head on and the extra items off. One other thing I'd like to mention is his white mailer again has the trademark retaining loophole abuse with an unrelated name on it. This time it's Lieutenant Spector. Why they needed to use Stinkor's box to keep this trademark active when The Mighty Spector figure came out in the same month is something I can't figure out.
As always the back of the box features a look at other figures in the line and gives us a bio for the character. I have no problems with this bio. Everything is taken from the 200X storyline, but that's really all they had to draw from. Stinkor was never given a real origin until 200X largely because he never appeared in either Filmation series. It's not because he came out too late in the line, but rather that series producer Lou Scheimer refused to use the character. According to Filmation staff, when the description of Stinkor was read out at a meeting of the story editors, all of them burst out laughing at the idea of a character who was "a walking fart joke" and vowed never to use Stinkor in any episode script. Stinkor finally made it into animated form in the 200X MYP cartoon and showed that under the right circumstances he actually can work.
Strangely, despite is original objections to Stinkor, the series bible for Scheimer's proposed sequel series "He-Ro Son of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe" mentions a character by the name of Odar whose power was identical to Stinkor's. This of course never came to be. Let's move on to the figure now.
Most of Stinkor's body is actually the hairy buck from Beast Man. While the vintage figure was a straight repaint of Mer-Man, the card art depicted him with a furry body, which makes sense with him being a skunk man, so the Four Horsemen decided to go with that look for him. he has the hairy lower legs from Carnivus so he does feature the calve articulation joint. His boots and feet are the Skeletor mold and he also has the same hands as Skeletor, his left is the more closed one from the reissue.
Stinkor does feature new forearm pieces. Hold on now, before you click on respond to "correct" me, they are new pieces. They are modeled like the finned arms of Skeletor, but the part between the fin/glove and the elbow is sculpted with the hairy body look and that is something we have not seen before. Sadly, this was not good enough for Mattel's design team. And by them I mean the guys who turn the Four Horsemen's prototypes into final figures, not the Horsemen themselves. If you look at the arms you will see they are actually reversed much like the reversed shoulders that have popped up a few times on figures. When fans saw this in photos and pointed it out then the bomb hit. Turns out this was done ON PURPOSE!
Mattel's design team apparently decided they wanted to make the figure look more unique so they reversed the forearms in order to have the fins going a different direction and make Stinkor "stand out". Oh he stands out all right, in that he clearly is assembled wrong! Now how bad it looks often depends on the angle you look at him from and the pose of his arm. Sometimes it's not that bad but others it just looks like his arm is twisted funny. I think what really bugs me more is this was done on purpose by Mattel with no fan input. If they had asked the fans, "Hey do you like this look to make him more unique?" then we could have said "no, leave him alone". Instead Mattel waited until the fans complained, then revealed it was intentional and defended the move saying it's better, despite the fan reaction clearly indicating it is not. (This also lead some fans to believe it in fact was a mistake and Mattel just doesn't want to admit they messed up and reversed body parts AGAIN) On top of that this is not what the Four Horsemen intended. They sent the prototype with correct arms and Mattel changed it, as far as I know, without their consent. Not good. Hopefully the fan backlash gets through to them and they never do something like this again.
Getting back to the good and intended by the Horsemen, Stinkor, much like Mer-Man and Draego-Man features a new additional piece over his neck. This gives him a large scruffy furred neck appearance. See, stuff like this makes the character more unique in a good way.
Stinkor comes with two heads. The first is a straight repaint of the vintage style Mer-Man head, just like the vintage figure. The second, and this is the one I prefer -again more unique in a good way, is more like the 200X head. There's not a huge "hyper anime detail" that the Mattel bigwigs seem to hate, but there is a more feral look. The ears are streamed and pointed, the eyes are a bit larger and the mouth is more savage looking with fang like teeth. Of course if you're going for a real 200X look the mouth doesn't really matter as he also includes a breath mask that fits over his face. It is designed to form fit the head, it doesn't fit onto the vintage style head as well. You can kind of get it there but it's liable to fall off.
He also includes a set of air tanks that fit on his back by plugging into a very small hole on the back of his armor. The armor itself is a new mold that recreates the look of the old figure. In the vintage line this armor mold was shared with Mekaneck and sure enough we've recently learned that Meky is coming soon to the MOTUC line. The armor does have a new feature in the front. The small red dot is removable similar to the bit on Bow's armor- but even smaller. In fact this is probably the smallest accessory in the line so far so be very careful if you don't want to loose it. Once removed it can be replaced with another piece featuring an airflow control valve like the kind seen on the 200X version of Stinkor.
Finally, he has his traditional blue shield, which is the same mold as the Palace Guards' and weapons rack. This is fitting since the vintage figure's shield was a repaint of the one that came with Castle Grayskull. Stinkor also has a brand new gun that has a slight 200X vibe to it, though Stinkor did not have one in that series. The gun, shield and air tanks are all done in a flat blue color with no extra details. This is a bit disappointing considering how much extra detail usually is seen in the line. More to the point they were supposed to have the extra details originally, but Mattel was forced to cut costs on the figure and chose to drop the extra paint decos to save money rather than drop an accessory altogether. In that case it was probably the better choice, though they still could have gone with a more metallic blue paint.
Stinkor is a perfect recreation of the original figure right down to his smell. As mentioned, the Classics figure does smell just like the vintage. Mattel was able to reproduce the exact aroma -patchouli oil mixed into the plastic rather than sprayed on, which helps the scent remain. Though it fades a bit over time it never fully vanishes. Over 25 years later, the vintage figure still has a scent to him. Now I will say the smell, thankfully, isn't as overpowering as Moss Man's was at first. It's strong enough that I noticed it as soon as I opened the package, but he doesn't slam me in the nostrils from the shelf as soon as I walk in the room like Moss Man did when I first got him (Moss Man's scent has faded over time, though I can still smell it when holding the figure) While I did want Stinkor to smell, I was concerned it would be too strong but I think they found a good balance.
The 200X staction did not have a scent to it, though he still looked really cool. You can see how the alternate head captures the more unique look that was brought out in 200X. Also notice where the valve idea came in. The one thing I wish had been included are the hoses running from the air tanks to the mask. It just logically seems like something that should be there. I'd even have preferred getting them instead of the gun. Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with the gun, but since we never had it before it would not have been missed if it meant the tooling money could go towards a full breathing apparatus.
On the whole I'm pretty happy with how Stinkor turned out. While I'm not pleased with the reversed forearms, they don't totally ruin the look for me. I love that they included parts for different display options, and the fact that they included his signature scent actually makes me happy. (Now if they would just flock Panthor...)
Stinkor is sold out on Mattycollector.com (he went really fast) so you'll need to check the secondary market for him. Good luck, good hunting and, until next time, Good Journey.
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