M.A.S.K., however, seems to have had exactly this marketing guideline. Female figures were not sold in figure packs (Vanessa Warfield was sold in an European exclusive pack, but not in America), but there were two vehicles with female figures: for the M.A.S.K. team, Gloria Baker and the Stiletto, and for the V.E.N.O.M. team, Vanessa Warfield and the Manta.
There is an evidence that in most toy lines that dared to release female figures, these were more difficult to find than their male counterparts. Companies replenished toy stores shelves with the male figures, while the female figures were not produced at all or just in a lower scale. This made them very hard to find, even at the time. I remeber that, when I wanted to buy Teela and Evil-Lyn (from the Masters of the Universe series) as a kid, I had to order them in my local toy shop, because the shop owner also meant that they wouldn’t sell.
Well, back to the M.A.S.K. toy, the vehicle is stealth mode is a purple Nissan 300 ZX, which was a very popular sport car those days. Many details make this car great: the license plate has the name of her pilot: Vanessa; tyres are “Terror 2000”; it includes seat belts and the special features are perfectly well hidden.
The two intakes over the bonnet are two buttons. One of them activates the defense mode of the vehicle, that is an assault plane: two wings come out from the lower part of the car, while at the front, missiles and cannons come out of the headlamps. To complete the transformation, you have to turn the front wheels, ant you have to pull from the rear license plate to free the jet boosters of the plane plus a rear spoiler.
When the wings are expanded, you can launch the co-pilots seat by pushing the second button/intake. The “quick escape seat” will fall down.
Vanessa Warfield comes with her mask, “Whip”. The feature of this mask is that it “pretends to shoot an electronic whip to snap at the enemy”, as read in the box back. The V.E.N.O.M. organisation is the Vicious, Evil Networt of Mayhem (Mayhem is their leader).
In my opinion, this is one of the best vehicles in this toy-line between the ones I have seen. Transformation is great, car looks awesome, and the figure too.
FACTS and FIGURES:
- Name: MANTA with VANESSA WARFIELD/ WHIP
- Toy Line: M.A.S.K. (Wave 3)
- Year: 1987
- Company: Kenner (U.S.A.)
- Size of the vehicle: 7,5’’ or 20 cm
- Size of the figures: 2½’’ or 6,5 cm