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No 2002 Era MOTU Figures For The Classic Line
MOTU: Jay Cochran - 2008.09.02
For those fans who were hoping that Mattel’s modern Masters of the Universe line (released in 2002 and cancelled shortly afterward) would make some type of return in the new Masters of the Universe Classic line, I am afraid we have some bad news for you. According to Mattel’s Scott Neitich, this new Classic line will only include new figures based on their original 80’s look, at least for now.

Scott tells us, “All of the figures in the new MOTUC line will be retrofitted to look like classic figures. So when and if we did ‘Count Marzo’ for example is released, the Horsemen will sculpt him to look like he had a figure in the 1980s (Editor’s Note: The Count Marzo character never had a figure made in the 80’s or in 2002. So this would be a completely new figure, if made). We may eventually do variants of figures like Hordak in his 2002 look. But initially we will be doing all the figures in a vintage classic look.”

For those of you who have not been following recent Masters of the Universe events, Mattel brought a new modernized line of He-Man figures to retail in 2002 which were sculpted by the Four Horsemen. This line was largely praised by collectors, however the line (for reasons which are still debated to this day) were not largely embraced by retailers and soon after was canceled. Many people felt the line was canceled because of Mattel’s bad handling of the distribution for it.

Several years later, Mattel has made a new attempt to re-launch Masters of the Universe through an online website operated by Mattel themselves. This new line with detailed articulated figures is supposed to be aimed primarily at collectors and also is being sculpted by the Four Horsemen.

However, this new line has not been warmly embraced by many collectors, primarily due to the price tag that these figures are sporting. Each 6” figure will cost $20 plus S&H and will be sold exclusively online. Another reason many collectors have expressed disappointment in this new line is Mattel’s decision to base these new figures on their classic 80’s look instead of the more modern 2002 look. In a recent non-scientific poll we conducted on TNI, only 45% of the people who participated said they would buy these figures.

At this time, it is unclear where Mattel plans to take this line. Scott did reveal to us that they are looking at possible “Collect-To-Connect” packs-ins for the future. With the potential for He-Man to return to the big screen in a new live-action movie, it would seem to us that we will eventually see Masters of the Universe return to regular retail. For the immediate future and with the current economic conditions many collectors face today, it seems unclear how much support fans will be willing to give (at $20 a pop) to Mattel at this line.

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