TNI Review: 2002 Masters Of The Universe He-Man & Skeletor

by Jay Cochran
July 04, 2002

A Headstrong teenager with a nose for trouble stumbles upon an acient stone castle deep in the Eternia Forest. There he meets a beautiful sorceress who gives him a magical weapon. The Power Sword, and tells him that only he can save Eternia from the evil Skeletor. By raising the sword above his head, he transforms into He-Man The Most Powerful Man In The Universe! Together with his heroic companions, Stratos and Man-At-Arms, He-Man takes on Skeletor and the Evil Horde in the Battle For All Eternia!

ADC Review: He-Man

2002 He-Man
He-Man comes with his Power Sword, Battle Ax, Battle Shield and removeable chest armor. You can twist and release his waist for Sword Slash and Power Punch action.

2002 He-Man2002 He-Man
You can rotate the hilt of the Power Sword to place it in battle formation. The sword or the ax can be placed in a little strap on the back of his chest armor to be carried into battle.

Packaging {C+}

Mattel's choice of packaging is very simple and clean. The color scheme goes well but there is not much there to generate interest. No cool box art, stats or individual bios. Also most noteably is the absence of mini-comics (though these may return later on in the line).

2002 He-Man
Sculpting {A+}

The detail on this sculpt is amazing. From the fur on the shorts to the vains on the muscles, the Four Horsemen did an outstanding job with this sculpt. They have brought a real modern look to the MOTU line while keeping a touch of the classic line in place.

Paint {A+}

The detail on the paint for this figure is also amazing. The dirty blond hair down to the emblem on his belt are clear and detailed. Even the straps on his boots are well defined by the paint job.

Accessories {B+}

The accessories for this new He-Man figure are very good in their detail. The Shield is the right size and the ax has a feel of something that would really cause some damage. The new power sword however is a tough one to judge. Very different from the sword that came with the classic He-Man figure, this one has a much more technological look to it. Twisting the hilt so that the claws stick out in 4 different directions gives it a much more deadly look and the He-Man symbol is well represented here. Overall I like the new sword however I can understand how some fans of the classic line may not.

Quality {B+}

Mattel has done a great job with the overall quality of this figure. The joints are tight and he can stand pretty good without the use of a stand. The figure can twist at the waist and the wrists turn. The only drawback for this figure I see is that the grip on his left hand is a little loose. Mostly geard to hold the sheild it does't allow him to hold his other weapons in that hand tightly and even the Shield fits a little loose in it.

Articulation {C}

Articulation has not changed much in the MOTU figures since the classic like was made. Being able to turn the hands at the wrists is nice but still no knee or elbow joints. Sitting for these figures is a no no, and don't expect to be able to put these figures in to many differnt poses.

Overall {A}

Though a few drawbacks I feel that MOTU collectors will be very happy with this figure and that kids will find alot of entertainment playing with them. The detail on these make it so you can sit there and just look at it while things like the microchips in their feet which will allow the figures to interact with future playsets make for lots of hours of play. Mattel and the 4-Horseman have done a great job keeping aspects of the classic line intact while at the same time giving them a much more modern look.

ADC Review:Skeletor

2002 Carded Skeletor
Skeletor comes with a double blade sword, battle staff, and removeable chest armor. You can push a button on his back to create a slashing action with his right arm. The blades on his sword pull apart to creat two seperate swords.

Packaging {C+}

Mattel's choice of packaging is very simple and clean. The color scheme goes well but there is not much there to generate interest. No cool box art, stats or individual bios. Also most noteably is the absence of mini-comics (though these may return later on in the line).

2002 Skeletor
Sculpting {A+}

The detail on this sculpt is also amazing. Skeletor's face actually looks like a skull and the designs and symbols on his leather armor are fantastic. Again even more so than He-Man they have brought a real modern look to him while keeping a touch of the classic character in place.

Paint {A+}

The paint job on this figure is even better than the one on He-Man. The shadowing on his face is perfect.

2002 Skeletor
Accessories {B}

Bringing back Skeletors classic battle staff is a real plus. Painting the head silver and the horns bronze gives it a much more realistic look over the classic version. The detail of the skull of his staff is not as good as the detail on Skeletor's face but it still looks good. The double bladed sword I think may have room for improvement though. The two handles together make it hard for the figure to hold onto the sword and when the it's split, it just looks funny. The sword also does not fit very well in the strap on the back of Skeletor's battle armor.

Quality {B}

Again the quality of this figures is very good. The only drawbacks are that I don't think the button on the back for arm slashing action works very well, and it detracts from the overall look of the figure. The strap on his back to hold weapons was also not done very well. The way they placed it makes it so the weapons are always placed in a weird postion. Still the basic construction of this figure is sound and I feel most Skeletor fans will be very happy with this it.

Articulation {C}

As with He-Man, Articulation has not changed much since the classic figures were made. Skeletor can also turn his hands at the wrists but lack of knee or elbow joints really hurt these figures in the articulation department.

Overall {A-}

As with He-Man I am very happy with this figure. it is a great display piece, more so out of the package than in. I think kids will also get alot of enjoyment out of this line playabilty wise.

2002 Skeletor
As a bonus here is a look at the new skeletor standing with the classic Trap Jaw figure to give you an idea of scale.

Things to note: Right now it seems TRU's in Canada are getting shipments of these figures and Diamond shipped out cases to comic and specialty shops this past week. Other retailers should start stocking these figures in the coming weeks. In the Diamond shipments it seems the Mer-Man figure was held back but for some reason. He is expected to start shipping with the first wave of figures in the coming weeks.



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