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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

#922 HE-MAN - ROCKET DISK POWER PACK and TURBO TORMENTOR (1989)


This month I am joining many other Masters of the Universe fans worldwide to celebrate the 35th anniversary of this great toyline in Spain. A friend of mine with a few other colleagues is writing a book about this topic that will be published soon. The title is "Yo Tengo el Poder: La Historia de los Masters del Universo en España", haven't you heard about it yet? Visit their Facebook site for all information regarding this topic, and don't miss the release!
 

The New Adventures of He-Man started with a big set of figures and interesting vehicles in sizes ranging from small (Bolajet / Shuttle Pod) to huge (Starship Eternia). But that first wave also included two small accesories sold in blisterpacks, whose price was approximately the same than the price of a figure in a single pack. My Rocket Disk blister is tagged for 1.100 pesetas (6,60 euro), but I doubt this was its retail price, seems a bit too high for me. The price tag does not look very professional, so maybe it comes from a reseller or small toy shop.

Masters of the Universe, the vintage line, also had some battle accesories, but, again, not many considering the length and the number of references in the complete collection.



Well, the two accesories made for the He-Man toyline were the Rocket Disk Power Pack for He-Man or whoever heroic warrior was around and the Turbo Tormentor for Skeletor or any of his friends. These were small and cute backpacks that could be attached by means of a plastic harness to the figure and that had some shooting/firing function.

The Rocket Disk Power Pack could launch discs similarly to the Blaster Hawk from 1985, only in a much smaller scale. Each blister included 3 orange disks, that could be carried along: two in a special compartment, and the third one "loaded", ready to be fired by activating the corresponding trigger. The design is simple, but includes some kind of laser cannon on top to make it slightly more interesting (otherwise it would look just like a box).


The Turbo Tormentor also launches discs, but these fly like a propeller. The blister pack included two disks, either in bright yellow or in greenish yellow. The launcher is located at one side of the figure, with the tip over the shoulder. The backpack has again a slot where one of the disks can be carried, while the second one is loaded. The design is kind of more elaborated, not just because of the unsymmetric way to carry it, but also because the launcher looks like a futuristic cannon (not like a box).

The propeller stuff is a classic feature seen in many toys through the years, and a specially funny one.

While the first accesory commented in this entry was available worldwide, the Turbo Tormentor was an euro-exclusive item. I do not know the reason behind it, and it doesn´t seem to be due to law restrictions or safety regulations about shooting toys (there are later toys with this same feature available). Then why?

Many collectors claim that the mechanism behind the Turbo Tormentor never actually worked correctly, so maybe, after Mattel checked that this was actually happening, decided not to distribute this reference in the United States... it is also a possibility since it is also something that already happened before with Darius. Another posibility is that the propellers are actually too fragile and break easily, like Hasbro claimed when they recalled Roadblock v4. Despite being an European only release, the prices for this item are low or even very low, being very easy to find carded even today (30 years after its release). Same happens with the Rocket Disk accesory, it is also very easy to find.

Another comment... like the bubbles of the figure´s blister cards, these two accesories also carried sometimes the sticker promoting the "new" masters of the universe toyline, but the two carded toys I own unfortunately do not carry them.

Read more about Masters of the Universe in these links!




FACTS and FIGURES:
  • Name: Rocket Disk Power Pack (Nr. 3533) and Turbo Tormentor (Nr. 3531)
  • Toy Line: He-Man (also New Adventures of He-Man) (Wave 1)
  • Year: 1989
  • Company: Mattel (U.S.A.)
  • Size of the figures: 14 cm, backpacks are maybe 4 or 5 cm wide

Saturday, March 9, 2019

#921 MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE - FISTO and WHIPLASH (Ref. 7015 and 4935) (1984)



This month I am joining many other Masters of the Universe fans worldwide to celebrate the 35th anniversary of this great toyline in Spain. A friend of mine with a few other colleagues is writing a book about this topic that will be published soon. The title is "Yo Tengo el Poder: La Historia de los Masters del Universo en España", haven't you heard about it yet? Visit their Facebook site for all information regarding this topic, and don't miss the release!
 

My entry today will deal with two figures from the 3rd wave (1984): Fisto and Whiplash.

I got Fisto as a kid. If I recall well, it was one of my first three or four figures, and one of my favorites since back then. The concept is pretty cool, with that huge metal fist, and the action feature, although a bit simple, was also amazing. Probably it is the feature I used most among all figures.
The figure itself, leaving the fist aside, is not very interesting: it has the classic cast and one of the classic armours too. The head gets more attention, since there were not so many characters with a beard. The colour mix: grey, purple and brown is a plus, I would say, and the long sword is also unique and cool. I guess it had to be a sword, because his counterpart Jitsu also had one (a sword fits better to Jitsu than it fits to Fisto).


 


Whiplash, on the other hand, is a figure I never had, although at least two friends of mine had it, and I played with it when visiting them. Despite buying it a few years ago, being already an adult collector, I have a certain weakness for the character, since it was my nickname in the community forum "Nueva Dominion - Eternia", where I used to post regularly and where I met some other collectors and people who became friends until today and beyond. 

Back to the figure, it is based on a great concept, a muscled lizard that striked with its tail. In "battle" it is not a very practical feature, it is more handy to use the waist twist to punch other figures than to hit them with the tail, but it doesn't matter! It simply looks cool and makes the figure unique. The colour combination is not very original, just mixing two different shades of green (lizard=>green), and probably did not appel children as it does with adult collectors.

The figure came with an orange spear, matching its orage belt. This spear was originally straight, but with the time, if not kept horizontal, it tends to bend. Mine is not so bad.





I would like to say that I own two versions of Fisto (shown in the following picture). Note the different hair colour, the different shades of purple in the armour and the slips and the size of the head. The figure on the left is the one I had as a kid, and it was made in France. The plastic in his left leg is a bit damaged, but interestingly, this happened back in the 80s, maybe it was a factory production error. The figure on the right was made in Malaysia. Both swords are slightly broken, they are very hard to find unbroken due to its fragility.


The variants in the MOTU world are becoming more and more intereting for collectors. What are we waiting for to start a variants webpage like the one for Kenner's Star Wars at "The Imperial Gunnery"?

I also have this illustration from a Fisto card, which depicts our hero hitting no less than Skeletor. Great art!

FACTS and FIGURES:
  • Name: FISTO (Ref. 7015) and WHIPLASH (Ref. 4935)
  • Toy Line: Masters of the Universe (Wave 3)
  • Year: 1984
  • Company: Mattel (U.S.A.)
  • Size of the figures: 5½’’ or 14 cm
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