Thursday, June 7, 2012

Toy Review – Masters of the Universe Classics Slush Head By Mattel

I didn’t know I wanted this guy until I saw he was coming out.

I didn’t pay a whole heck of a lot of attention to New Adventures of He-Man. I did buy a couple of the toys just because I was already a collector and used to pick up anything I thought looked cool. I had He-Man and Skeletor and while I thought they were interesting updates to the old He-Man concept, I did realize I didn’t want to start a whole new line.

I think I might have watched an episode or two of the cartoon at some point, but wasn’t terribly impressed. I want to say I remember Skeletor’s voice being awful. Like, even more awful than on the original cartoon. So I wasn’t overly familiar with any of the characters and mostly was just curious to see the MOTUC updates.

Slush Head immediately impressed me. I’ve always liked figures with domes over their heads. Any kind of translucent dome as headgear will draw me to a toy. Ace, Deep Six, Astronaut Raphael, Deep Sea Dive Batman, the outer space versions of the Clone Wars characters, and the Martians from Mars Attacks! are all some of my favorites. Actually, Mutagen Man from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles line is one of my favorite figures of all time because his whole body is a translucent bubble. Man, I hope they update him in the new line.

So Slush Head is no Mutagen Man, but he does look pretty cool.

Also, Mrs. Troublemaker worked in a comic shop for fifteen years and they had these mystery action figures that would show up every once in a while. They’d just kind of hang around the cash register as little items of curiosity; being played with or discussed. One of these mystery figures was dubbed “Pickle Man” by the staff and nobody ever knew who he was or what he was from. While we were at the Days of the Dead horror convention back in February we came across Pickle Man at one of the vendors and it turned out he was the original Slush Head. So there you go.
First Glance: Slush Head looks an awful lot like a Sontaran. I mean, if it was drawn by an eight-year-old that had just had a Sontaran described to them. Vaguely. But I like him a lot.
Sculpt: Slush Head – like most other Masters of the Universe Classics – has a good number of shared parts. His torso, arms, and legs come from Clawful (thank goodness they found a good use for those parts – stupid Clawful). He has Icarius’ calves and feet, Kobra Khan’s forearms, and Mer-Man’s hands.

New for Slush Head are his head, chest gear, some arm gimmicks, and trunks.
All of the above work together amazingly well. If you look at the old Slush Head, he just isn’t all that great. Aside from the liquid in his dome he looks very generic and Dollar Tree-like. 
This update looks totally rad.

Slush Head has ball joints at the shoulders and hips. He has swivels at the biceps, wrists, waist, thigh, and tops of his calves. He has regular pivots at the elbows and knees, with rocker ankles. He has the standard abdominal joint, but his chest gear keeps it from moving too much. All of the joints on my figure are tight and function well.

The whole torso/head setup is awesome and makes this guy stand out from the rest of your collection. The head doesn’t turn and the dome doesn’t come off. Normally I would call this a bad decision on the part of the Four Horsemen, but the whole point was to make it so you could put water (or something) in that dome. I’m okay with it. The head looks great and is very different while still fitting in with MOTUC. Slush Head’s facial expression is one of… I don’t know – gross outrage? I like it. The chest piece covering the torso has a nice amount of detail and looks just technological enough to seem futuristic without making this guy seem too fancy. The tentacles plug in at the bottom, but I’ll get to them in a second.
The dome itself has a plug in the back that can be removed to fill the dome with water and then – in theory – hold it in when replaced. I do not trust that plug. It is a soft rubber that fits somewhat loosely into the hole it’s in. I expected to struggle a bit getting it out and it just popped right out with no problem. 
I don’t know that I believe it will hold the water in and I don’t want a puddle on my shelf. Granted – we’re talking about just a few milliliters of fluid, here; but it only takes a little to screw up a wooden shelf. And I don’t want to stand Slush Head on a sponge.

The combination of Clawful and Kobra Khan’s arms looks awesome, as does the use of Icarius’ calves. I find it a bit odd that they made new trunks for this guy rather than just using Roboto’s, but whatever. They look good. Slush Head also has some business on his arms that is new. There are cuffs at his wrists, elbows, and biceps with wires running up the sides. It looks really cool and is one more little detail that makes him different.
Design: The desing is where – once again – this figure succeeds in using farmed parts. The fact that all of the parts from disparate characters are the same color is such a simple and obvious thing, yet makes such a huge impact.

The head has a great paint job that really highlights his ugly and weird face. I love the bulbous eyes on this guy.

Slush Head almost seems a little light on detail, at least until you compare him to Stinkor. But really, he has plenty of deco on his chest gear and backpack. He looks good. I don’t know why, but I really appreciate that his calf rockets (or whatever) match the vest and aren’t painted silver.
Accessories: Slush Head comes with a new blaster rifle and two tentacles.
The blaster is pretty neat, and is not so specific to Slush Head that it couldn’t be repurposed later. The sculpt is cool and has a slightly more rounded look than some of the regular MOTU –era gear. There are a few little paint details that I find essential to making accessories in this line work.
The tentacles are solid plastic with pincers on the end. There is a swivel joint at the base of each pincer. The claw one is just a single piece; but the weird, rectangular one has a joint that allows it to be opened and closed. The thing is, I can’t quite figure out what that pincer is supposed to be. It won’t quite hold anything and the serrated edge is on the outside. It’s just kind of weird. Like the blaster rifle, the tentacles have some minor paint detailing to make them not look like crap. That is to say, not like Stinkor’s accessories.
Okay, here’s the thing about the tentacles. They should really be bendy. It’s absurd that they aren’t. However – I don’t trust Matty with bendy. After Snout Spout and Mr. Stay-Puft, I’d like it just fine if Matty would stay away from anything but standard plastics. So if non-posable tentacles are what we get; fine.
Packaging: The MOTUC 3oth Anniversary blister card with the bio on the back. I will never get tired of this simple, nice-looking package.
Overall: I really dig Slush Head. I wish I was more confident in his dome’s ability to hold water and I wish he had bendy tentacles. Otherwise he looks great on the shelf and is a shining example of how awesome non-mainstream characters can be in the Masters of the Universe Classics line.

4 out of 5

Go buy this fella somewhere. He’s a cool sci-fi mutant and a good toy even if you’re not collecting MOTUC.

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