Wednesday, August 31, 2011

#56 MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE – ZOAR & SCREEECH (Ref. 4014 and 4713) (1983)

 
Zoar (“Barbarian Bird”) and Screeech (“Fighting Falcon”) (with 3 ‘e’s) are two winged creatures (some kind of eagles) from the Masters of the Universe series. Most figures in this series share the casts of their bodies, arms, legs and even heads. Design of this line should have been very cheap, and, due to its great success, very profitable. 
 
When it comes to creatures, the MOTU-series also reused their moulds: The Panther-like creatures “Battle Cat” and “Panthor” where made with exactly the same cast, “Stridor” and “Night Stalker” (the horses) and “Zoar” and “Screeech” (the eagles), too. This occurred during the first Masters of the Universe waves, but in later waves the reuse of casts was not so common.

Zoar’s and Screeech’s accesories are also exactly the same, and in the same colour: a two-piece stand, and a two-piece armour. They both have the same feature: by pressing a trigger in one leg, they flap their wings. As I bought Screeech, the seller had written in his description, that this was some kind of mail-away offer, with bagged weapons. I'm not sure about that, I suspect is not true.

 
About these creatures, Zoar is a transformation of Sorceress, the “heroic guardian of castle Grayskull”, that appears in many comic-books, like the ones following this paragraph. Screeech, nevertheless, is a more obscure character, that doesn’t appear in comic books; probably it was a last minute decision to produce it, since it wouldn’t cost much, and it would be one reference more in the catalogue. Even though the character Sorceress is so popular and appears so often in comic books and cartoons, the figure was not released until 1987, in the 6th wave (and the last one in most parts of the world).

From minicomic: The Search for Keldor

Sorceress cardback illustration (Taken and modified from He-Man.org discussion boards)

From german Interpart comic: "Die Rache des Bösen"

Something that not everybody knows, is the moulds for these birds (as well as for the panthers), were “recycled” from the Big Jim toy line, that at this present time had already been cancelled. Big Jim’s Eagle quickly became a very popular figure in this collection: it was released in the “Eagle Outfit” (Ref. 7308) and in the “the Eagle of Danger Peak” adventure set (Ref. 7365) both from 1974. These two eagles were a little bit different, as it can be seen in the next pictures. Some other time, I’ll talk about these other Big Jim sets.


 As a bonus, I update this entry with the instruction sheets of Zoar or Screeech. Note that the name of the creature is not mentioned anywhere, so it was used for both. The reference number printed is 4014, corresponding to Zoar, which was, as said above, designed first.

Original Instruction sheet in English, German, Italian and French

Same as above, other side.

A very interesting "alternative" instruction sheet is this one here. It's origin is for me unknown, if you can help me, I'd be very glad to hear you!

Alternative instruction sheet in the same languages, unknown origin

FACTS and FIGURES:
  • Name: ZOAR and SCREEECH (Ref. 4014 and 4713)
  • Toy Line: Masters of the Universe (Wave 2)
  • Year: 1983
  • Company: Mattel (U.S.A.)
  • Size of the figures: Approx. 20 cm from tip to tip of the wings

5 comments:

  1. The two birds are reussies from big jim , you said it, I imagien you knew Battle cat and Pantor too.

    As for some vehicles, weapons and other accessories, Mattel is the king of Recycling !

    Nice pics, and interesting article ! As usual !

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, they reused many things from other collections, but I think it's fine, they can save some money in the manufacturing process, so they can sell a little cheaper, and although the birds, the panthers and so on are reused, I think they look great in both collections.

    Thanks for the comment!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Saludos!!!!

    No hace mucho me hice con Screeech, y me sorprendió la escala comprobándola en persona; aún siendo un reciclaje de Big Jim, hay que decir que en este caso, fue una buena idea. Incluso pensé en hacerme con un águila de big Jim para customizar algún personaje motu (en plan custom clic-clac, sin pintura ni añadidos). Y el tigre naranja, buena figura también para expandir el universo motu: http://mismotus.blogspot.com.es/2009/11/battle-tiger.html

    Sea como fuere, buenas piezas y en muy buen estado!!!!

    hasta pronto!!!!!!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. ¡Gracias por el comentario!
    Efectivamente, creo que es un gran acierto, puesto que la escala, si comparas la cabeza del águila con la cabeza de Sorceress, es casi del mismo tamaño.

    Tengo un Screeech repe (en muy buen estado), incluso con armadura, pero sin el soporte para apoyarlo, te lo mando con el siguiente envío para que lo customices.

    Por cierto, tengo pendiente ampliar este artículo con las instrucciones originales de la criatura, a ver si me pongo este fin de semana, aunque no sé, no sé.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hola Fernando, no sé si verás esto por estar suscrito a esta entrada en concreto, si no, lo comentamos pronto por email.

    He actualizado la entrada con dos hojas de instrucciones diferentes (las que comenté anteriormente), ambas en inglés, alemán, italiano y francés, pero distintas, ¿sabes de dónde puede salir la segunda? la primera parece la "oficial", pero la segunda está un poco peor hecha...

    ReplyDelete

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