Friday, March 27, 2015

#527 MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE – GWILDOR, BLADE and SAUROD (1987)



I think the movie has been commented many times and I couldn´t do any better than what other people wrote before me. Just a couple of facts: the motion picture was a production of Golan-Globus Productions and Cannon Films made in 1987, a bit late in most parts of the world, since the He-Man phenomenon was already disappearing. The movie is a live-action movie and the image of He-Man, Skeletor and other characters differ quite a lot from those of the figures or the animated series.

I saw it at the cinema a long time ago, but I cannot remember if I liked the movie or not. What I remember is that the next figure I purchased after the movie was Gwildor, so at least I might have found Gwildor funny.


I haven´t seen the movie since then, I maybe watch it again sometime over the next months. I heard a podcast talking just about this movie and the guys there convinced me that the movie is actually a great movie, worth watching. Unfortunately, not everybody thinks like this, and the movie received very bad comments and critics from 1987 on. The podcast is in Spanish, and it is quite funny, I would give it a try...

Back to the toys, Mattel obviously wanted to profit from the movie and released three figures with the new characters created for the movie.

The first figure is Gwildor, some kind of comic relief (I read somewhere that Orko would have been too expensive to animate or create using special effects). He is a strange creature with human form, and is the guardian of a Cosmic Key that can be used to travel from one dimension to another one. The figure is completely different to any other MOTU figure, has no waist or legs, and has no action feature. It came with the Cosmic Key that was promoted as its “action feature”. The figure has point of articulations on neck, shoulders, wrists and ankles, and its body is like a big plastic bubble.



The second character is Blade which is one of the bad guys who fight He-Man. He is the master of swords, and has a very good fight by the end of the movie. It is interesting to mention that the actor is also the choreographer. The figure has the “twist waist” action feature, and the same mechanism in both arms, so it is a great figure. Also the accessories are great, with two long thin swords and a piece of cloth (made of plastic, of course) that can be attached to his waist, and can also hold one of the swords. This figure has no gum strap holding its legs, but the more advanced mechanism. In comparison to other figures, Blade is slightly taller than the rest, because of the straight legs. A rather impressive figure.



The third character is Saurod a reptilian-being and a bounty hunter. The figure is made of brown plastic and has an oxidized look, which is not uniform. The action feature are cold sparks being launched from its mouth, when pressing a lever on the back of the figure. This feature is shared with some transformers, and other toys. The figure came with a small black pistol, which is rather small and also hard to find. The figure has some kind of helmet that cannot be removed: it is glued to the head, but it is also a bit fragile. If the figure falls to the ground in the wrong position, the helmet may separate from the head. It is also one of the few figures with a tail, but unlike Whiplash, Saurod’s tail is made of hard plastic, like the arms or the legs.



The figures were sold in normal cardbacks, but in the bubble they carried a small yellow sticker to indicate they are the new characters from the film (at least in Spain). I think this kind of stickers are intended to inform parents rather tan children.

I’d like to show this ad to end my article. It is taken from a Spanish comic and it is an official advertising from Mattel Spain for these three figures. The nice thing are that the names of Gwildor and Saurod are changed. Note that the names are written correcty. Blade and Gwildor were pronounced in the Spanish dubbing of the film as they were pronounced in English, so the writing had to be adapted not to mistake children, so Blade became Bleit, and Gwildor became Guildor, which sounds slightly different, but it is still readable in Spanish.


UPDATE: A second figure of Gwildor with a slightly different skin colour and a silver Cosmic Key instead of plain grey. Both are Made in Mexico.





FACTS and FIGURES:
  • Name: GWILDOR (Ref. 3294), BLADE (Ref. 3295) and SAUROD (Ref. 3670)
  • Toy Line: Masters of the Universe (Wave 6)
  • Year: 1987
  • Company: Mattel (U.S.A.)
  • Size of the figures: 5½’’ or 14 cm (Gwildor a bit less)

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