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Masters of the Universe Classics: Batros

 
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Lord Skeletor
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Joined: 18 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 11:00 pm    Post subject: Masters of the Universe Classics: Batros Reply with quote

Greetings fellow He-Fans and She-Ravers,

The MOTUC line continues to bring us great characters from the classic He-Man and She-Ra cartoon series, making up for some 30 years lost time as we finally get these characters in figure form for the first time ever. That tradition continues with the third entry in the Club Filmation sub-line: Batros.



Batros was a villain who appeared in the season two episode "The Great Books Mystery". As the episode title suggests, the story revolved around Batros' unique approach to trying to conquer Eternia in his theft of all the kingdom's books. Yes, he stole all the books and I do mean ALL the books. Not just the historical texts or the records that helped explain the advanced technology of Eternia, everything, even the simple storybooks. Strangely the episode sort of glossed over why everyone thought this was a major issue. Beast Man questions Batros' intelligence in stealing books instead of gold and Skeletor simply states that books are "more valuable" and "the real treasures of the world" but doesn't go into anymore explanation than that. You'd think Beast Man would ask for more details as to why books are so important.

And, not to demean literature in any way but, he kind of has a point. I mean, yes, stealing all the books is a major crime and creates serious problems, but it's not really take over the world material. Batros actually monologues his plan (to no one) stating that when the people of Eternia learn all the books are gone they will force Randor to step down and make him king in his place. For the sake of argument let's assume the people actually did turn on Randor and remove him from the throne, why would they choose Batros as his replacement? It's not like he said he'd hold the books for ransom and only return them if they made him king or destroy them if they didn't. What makes him think they wouldn't just rally behind Randor to take the books back from him? It feels almost like one of Dr. Doofenshmirtz's schemes on Phineas and Ferb. Yes you've pulled off this plan and it does qualify as evil, but how exactly does this lead to you taking over? And they never do explain how Batros was able to take all the books in the kingdom at once and no one was the wiser until they were gone. If he can pull off a stunt like that why not take something more serious and life threatening like say all the FOOD?



Despite the flaw in logic of his plan, Batros was still a memorable villain who fans have wanted to see in figure form for a long time. He comes in the standard MOTUC blister card package. You will notice that there is no Evil Horde logo sticker despite the emblem on his chest harness. That's because Batros was not depicted as a Horde member. His cartoon appearance was in 1984 and the Horde didn't appear in toy form until 1985. So officially it's just a coincidence and he wears a red bat logo because he is a bat person. Except we know the Horde was in development at the time. Modulok appeared on the cartoon the same year plus we saw actual Horde invaders in the episode "Origin of The Sorceress" again all season two episodes. (Plus Origin of the Sorceress featured the first appearance of the Sword of Protection so She-Ra was in development at the time) No, Battle Armor Skeletor wears a bat on his outfit that's just a bat. That thing on Batros is a blatant Horde emblem! In my canon he was a former Horde mercenary who got stranded on Eternia after Hordak fled to Etheria.



The back of the box shows off other figures in the line and presents a bio to link Batros into the MOTUC continuity. I don't know about the real name Wiley. So what is Mega Man going to show up to fight him? The title "master of theft" doesn't really fit in my opinion either as, while his episode's plot involved him committing a major theft -and as noted he pulled this trick off quickly without detection- it wasn't really suggested that Batros' main M.O. was being a thief. Also the bio doesn't follow the episode right. Batros stole the books all by himself and it was after he pulled this off that Skeletor thought he could be useful and sought him out to help conquer Grayskull. Batros resisted at first wanting to rule Eternia himself and not be servant to anyone, actually trying to make Skeletor his subordinate. Skeletor quickly proved to be far superior in power (and Batros was shown to be pretty damn powerful himself...) so he somewhat reluctantly agreed to an alliance, with Skeletor saying he "might" let Batros have Eternia while he himself went on to rule the whole universe.



Out of the package, Batros captures his look right out of the cartoon. He uses the standard male buck for most of his body, the same hands as Fang Man, and a few new pieces. His boots and feet are all new, but maintain the full normal articulation. At first I thought his biceps were modified from Sy-Klone's with the wings in place of the blades, however in hand it became clear that bicep and wing were all one solid mold so these are new pieces. The detailing on the wings is very well done actually capturing the leathery skin and bone structure look of an actual bat wing. The placement was probably the best way to go with these as they don't inhibit articulation here. They can look a bit odd in certain poses, like if Batros has his hands on his hips, but for the most part allow for a variety of stances.



Batros also features a new furry collar piece a bit like those seen on Mer-Man, Stinkor, or the Snake Men, but this one is fully removable. It was never made clear if this is supposed to be natural fur on his body, or if it's part of a cowl he wears over his head. The fact that it's the same color as his pants and boots suggests that it may not actually be his own fur. I also feel it's worth noting the different structure of the underside of Batros' head as opposed to the standard design. Not sure why this was done, but it doesn't affect the look or articulation any when on.



Batros comes with a single accessory that has no relation to him at all. It's a repaint of Spikor's club, this time done in black with red spikes. While it looks pretty good in these colors, it's Weapons Pack material. And because of the figure's sculpt, I find it tricky to get into his hand. Batros never used this, or any weapon, in his episode and there's no reason to associate this with him. In the show he fired beams from his hands and make ghostly magical snakes appear, but never wielded any physical armament. Might have made more sense to have him come with a book like a repaint of Orko's or Shadow Weaver's. (or maybe the stack of books accessory from Mattel's Ghostbusters line) There was a slight sub-plot in the episode with Orko desperate to recover a book on unicorns that was to be his birthday present to Adam so that would've been an appropriate thing to throw in even if it was just a repaint of the existing book mold.



Despite my little rant earlier pointing out the hole in the villain's plan, it was actually a pretty good episode and Batros was a memorable villain that stood out, would have made a good recurring villain, and was deserving of a figure. He truly looks like someone who would've fit in the vintage line and his Classics representation turned out great. Whether you place him with Skeletor's group, the Horde, or independent villains he looks great in the collection. As I was typing this review up Batros was still available but marked Almost Gone, then I double checked right before posting and he's marked Sold Out so look to the secondary market because I do recommend him for any fan of Filmation. (and as I've said before, if you're not a fan of Filmation you're not a real MOTU fan) Good Luck and until next time, Good Journey.



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MacGyver
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 5:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I double checked right before posting and he's marked Sold Out so look to the secondary market because I do recommend him for any fan of Filmation. (and as I've said before, if you're not a fan of Filmation you're not a real MOTU fan) Good Luck and until next time, Good Journey.

How can you be a He-Man (i.e. Masters of the Universe) fan and not be a fan of Filmation? That's where it all started! Smile Cool



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MacGyver
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Joined: 30 Jan 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 5:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Regarding the book stealing scheme, remember that as Schoolhouse Rock told us- "Knowledge is power!" Very Happy Cool
And there is something to the idea of taking away the people's source of knowledge and slowly remaking things into one's own image and version of the truth......but I think it would take quite a while for such a scheme to really go through. Batros would also need some more leverage for such a plan- like denying the people's access to food sources, etc. (Thus, they then come to him for sustenance as the only dealer of food in town- but, they have to take it on his terms- and thus, he starts to spread his own teachings and information along with it. That's more of a Communist plot in some ways.)



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"I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No man comes to the Father but by me." - Jesus (John 14:6)

"You can do anything you want to do if you put your mind to it."- MacGyver

"Thunder...Thunder....Thunder...ThunderCats...HOOOO!!!!!!"- Lion-O
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