Masters of the Universe has to be the toy line that I am the most nostalgic about. With such a wide array of characters and over 400 action figures between each incarnation of the property over the years, itís hard not to find at least a few characters that you absolutely love.
For me, itís very easy. The characters can sometimes be very different from one another, ranging from barbarians and wizards, robots and animal creatures, and even high tech space explorers. It seems like these figures are mish-mashed from various different toy lines. Yet, somehow, they all fit together perfectly.
I love it. I love all of it. So when I was asked to name the Top Ten MOTU action figures, I immediately knew that it was impossible. How could I possibly pick only ten action figures out of over 400 and name them ďthe best?Ē
I canít. Thatís what I decided after giving myself a headache from over thinking it for too long. You see, any ďtop tenĒ list is nothing but a matter of opinion. Lists such as this are always subjective. So why I should I treat this list as anything other than that? The beauty of a property like Masters of the Universe is that ANY of these toys can be ďthe best.Ē It just depends on personal tastes.
So with that said, I can now present to you my list. Hereís ten of the coolest Masters of the Universe action figures of all time, according to ďPixel Dan.Ē
10. Spikor (Vintage MOTU)
Iíll warn you up front: nostalgia often plays a huge role in my favorites. I assume itís like that for a lot of folks. Sometimes you can pick up a toy that you played with when you were younger, and you are instantly reminded of the reasons you loved it as a kid. Itís like a nostalgia tidal wave washes over you.
Spikor is one of many figures on this list that still does that for me to this day. From his dark purple color to his trident-for-a-hand, this guy has such a wacky design in the best kind of way! Oh yeah, and his whole body is covered in rubbery spikes, making him look like a buffed out sea urchin. Seriously, heís amazing.
9. Fisto (MOTU Classics)
The modern Masters of the Universe Classics toy line has given us some of the most wonderful updates of classic characters. Featuring more articulation, accessories, and better sculpts that weíve ever seen in the past really has made this the ultimate MOTU line, in my opinion. And while there have been many, many good figures here, Fisto has got to be the ultimate representation of what a MOTU Classics action figure should represent.
This figure not only has one of the best sculpts in the entire line, but he also comes with multiple heads, weapons, and armor accessories allowing you to display him however you want. Do you prefer the vintage look with the purple sword? You can do that. Did you like the update he received in 200X that gave him the oversized sword, head band, and extra armor on the belt piece? Swap a few parts and youíve got that look nailed as well! Or hey, mix the parts up and make YOUR version of Fisto! This figure is simply perfection.
8. He-Man w/ Vintage Toy Head (MOTU Classics)
With several lines and almost countless variants, there are so many versions of the Most Powerful Man in the Universe to choose from for this list. Some are great, some are fine, and some are pretty dumb. And while I didnít feel that I needed to add the main character to this list, while looking over my collection to pick out my favorites my eyes just kept going back to this particular figure.
This is a bit of a tricky entry, because you canít actually buy this figure in this form. You have to buy the standard MOTU Classics He-Man, and then you get this alternate toy-style head packed-in with the Oo-Lar figure. But that is one of the other great things about the Classics line. Mattel was always really great about recognizing that there have been many different artistic interpretations of He-Man throughout the years, and everyone has their own favorite. This head right here is definitely my favorite. He is MY definitive version of He-Man.
7. Optikk (New Adventures of He-Man)
The New Adventures is sort of the black sheep of the franchise. I like the concept, but the original cartoon really does pale in comparison to the Filmation series, and even the later Mike Young Productions cartoon. Itís just too different. The toy line from Mattel suffered from that same problem. The figures were smaller and skinnier than what fans were used to. They didnít feel like He-Man toys.
But if you are able to look at this toy line for what it is, it really is a fun one filled with some great designs and cool playsets! But even as different as this line is, Optikk has always been a stand out action figure for me. A robot-like character whose head is a giant eyeball? I donít care who you are! This guy is rad!
6. Modulok (Vintage MOTU)
This has got to be one of the most creative figures to come out of the vintage toy line. If you are unfamiliar with this character, Modulok is a red monster-like member of the Evil Horde whose action figure featured a mix-and-match interchangeable parts gimmick. 24 pieces were included, giving you multiple arms, legs, torso pieces, and heads to build together however you see fit!
You can make a six-legged creature, or a 4-legged, 2-headed beast! Or anything in between! The box claimed you could create 1000 different combinations. I donít know if thatís an exact number or just an exaggeration, but one thing is certain: this is an exciting toy that really set a standard for future mix-and-match action figures for years after!
5. Keldor (200X MOTU)
The 2003 relaunch of Masters of the Universe (often dubbed 200X) was a really exciting return for the property. This is the line that established Four Horsemen Design as the awesome group of toy sculptors who would be designing all of our He-Man toys for the foreseeable future. But what made this line extra special were the much needed updates and great redesigns of these beloved characters.
The Horsemen really got to run wild with this line. And while many characters got some incredible sculpts, Skeletorís new look has always been one of my favorites. In fact, Iím pretty certain that this is still my all-time favorite look for olí bone face. And while I could have just chosen the standard release Skeletor, I opted to go for the San Diego Comic Con 2004 exclusive Keldor figure!
This figure featured the same great Skeletor sculpt, but included a more detailed, grittier paint deco and two interchangeable heads that allowed us to display him as his pre-overlord of Evil self or in mid-transformation to Skeletor. And man oh man, is that mid transformation head wonderfully gruesome! Itís not often we see something this graphic in Masters of the Universe!
4. Laser Light Skeletor (Vintage MOTU)
Skeletor found his way onto my list twice! I almost considered not including this one since this figure is one of the rarest pieces from the vintage line. But I couldnít help it, because I consider this to easily be one of my favorite Skeletor variants.
Released at the very end of the original Masters of the Universe line, and only outside of the US, Laser Light Skeletor and his counterpart Laser Power He-Man featured built in electronics that gives them a light-up effect. In the case of Skeletor, raising his right arms causes his hand to light up and his eyes to glow red. Despite the large batter pack on his back, the light-up feature works very well and is really effective. I just love those glowing eyes!
But aside from the light feature, Skeletor here features a killer sculpt! Looking at the intricate details worked into this guy, you can almost see the change in direction for the property. This figure is like the missing link between the original Skeletor figure and the New Adventures Skeletor! Plus, heís the first Skeletor to feature a cape and a removable cloth hood!
3. Teela (MOTU Classics)
Classics has given us some really great female representation. From the lovely ladies of the Princess of Power line to the beautifully bad girls like Shokoti and Evil Lyn. But in my opinion, none of the female figures in this line are as gorgeous as the first release Teela.
The Four Horsemen really outdid themselves with this figure. For some reason, Teela has always been difficult to capture in toy form, especially for action figures that feature a large amount of articulation. Teela here is one of the first super articulated female figures I recall seeing that also looked really beautiful. On top of that, she also features multiple accessories, giving collectors the option to display her with her snake armor or without! She could be your Mini Comic goddess or your captain of the Royal Guard!
This Teela figure really is one of the nicest figures ever made, in my opinion. And I mean that on a scale that extends even outside of Masters of the Universe. Itís a shame she was never reissued, making her one of the rarest figures in the line. Everyone who is a fan of He-Man should own this figure.
2. Scare Glow (Vintage MOTU)
Heís a skeleton. He has a purple cape. And he glows in the dark. Do I really need to type anything else here?
Like Spikor, Scare Glow has a lot of nostalgia behind him. I liked the look of this figure so much as a kid that he took over the role of leader of the Evil Warriors when I played. Sorry Skeletor, but you canít glow in the dark!
He got a really great new figure in MOTU Classics as well, but looking at them both I decided that the original just canít be beat for me. This guy is almost my favorite MOTU figure of all-time.
1. Mosquitor (Vintage MOTU)
If you know me, then you saw this coming a mile away. But that doesnít change anything. Mosquitor is the one Masters of the Universe action figure that carries the most nostalgia for me.
I love everything about this figure: the mechanical-like cone shaped head sculpt, the weird silver space boots, and of course that amazing action feature. Many figures in the original line had fun action features that make them unique. But none of them were as cool as having liquid red goo pumping through a chest window!
I could stare at that ďbloodĒ running through the clean bat emblem all-day long! Itís mesmerizing! Heís also one of the action figures I still vividly remember carrying around in my pocket, taking him on adventures wherever I went. I loved him that much. And my love for him has lasted nearly 30 years!
So, thatís it! Thatís my list! Now, itís your turn! Do you agree with any of my choices? Do you have an entirely different selection? Remember, the best thing about a ďTop TenĒ list is that itís completely subjective! So tell me: who are YOUR top ten favorite Masters of the Universe figures?
Check out more images for these figures below in our GALLERY!
Until next time!