They did a perfectly nice Masters of the Universe Classics version of this guy early on, but the Filmation-inspired Skeletor is fantastic. Effectively the victory lap for this line - which may be on its way to an end - Skeletor got some retooled parts, new accessories, and a new paint job to look like the cartoon. For some fans, like me, this is the real Skeletor - we know him from the cartoon, not the toys or comics. In other words, this is the greatest thing that could happen to Masters of the Universe even if Skeletor isn't as technically amazing as He-Man [FOTD #1,411] or Trap Jaw [FOTD #1,435].
The original Skeletor was good, and was was made better through a series of bonuses and upgrades. A Mini-Comic Head was packaged with Demo-Man [FOTD #370], for example - but a lot of Filmation gear got out too. Skeletor's Filmation sword was packed with Lizard Man [FOTD #1,130], Skeletor's cartoon axe was boxed with Plundor [FOTD #838], and the green guy also included the Diamond Ray of Disappearance. So to get a truly tricked-out Skeletor, you'll need all of these things - and you'll also need to note that this Filmation Skeletor action figure includes a mini-comics sword, which goes with another figure. They don't make it easy!
The figure itself has a lot of newness - the basic buck is back, with new boots, a new head, new forearms, a new loincloth, new armor, and new hands. There's a lot of freshness here - he's even a new color! The face is yellow with a purple hood. Said hood is larger than previous incarnations, which is more true to the cartoon model. Rocker ankles are included - some have gappy ones and some do not, there's a variant - as are bend-and-swivel wrists. Hands are a little more open than other releases, so the left hand isn't the greatest at gripping things while the right one can clutch his gear without a problem. Neither hand is a great fit for the aforementioned Diamond Ray of Disappearance, but I digress. The figure is decorated to look like a cartoon - flat, bright colors with no real rivets or weathering make this the perfect figure. It's kind of funny - for years fans demand amazing paint and insane articulation, and what we really want is a poseable, super-perfect replica of a very flat cartoon design from one of the cheaper popular cartoons of the 1980s. Just one look at Skeletor's goofy face, complete with perfect cheekbones and open grin, and you'll know if you need this one. (You do.)
Skeletor's Havoc Staff is pretty cool - it's flat like the cartoon, but could benefit from a little more detailing in the teeth. It could probably be shorter too, but it's still pretty fantastic. Skeletor's sword has a painted silver blade and gold handle. Unlike so many accessories, I don't see the word CHINA stamped on it sullying the view. Nicely done. Skeletor has no problems holding either weapon, but you'll probably want to hand the sword to your older Skeletor figures. It's a decent spread.
The classic He-Man and the Masters of the Universe cartoon is actually pretty fantastic - it's goofy and Skeletor is one of the great villains of that era's kidvid. You know this figure is important because they put out a bunch of accessories in anticipation of his arrival - we really lucked out here! The figure may (or may not) have sold out, so if it reappears at regular price you simply must get him, He-Man, and Trap Jaw. I hope they keep the Filmation-style going because they really are gorgeous - and I have little doubt they won't be cheap down the road, unlike many of the other previous figures in these lines. I can't deny Trap Jaw is more impressive, or that He-Man's head seems like more of a trumph, but dammit Skeletor's great. It's Skeletor! And it's likely as perfect as he will ever get.
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