Heyo! Snake Face, the latest in Mattel’s Masters of the Universe offerings, will be up for sale this Monday! Knowing the way that MattyCollector works, you’re going to want to try to buy him as fast as possible. Now, Snake Face isn’t the most obscure He-Man character out there, but he’s not exactly Skeletor either, ya know? And since we all know how much I like Medusa types (Yeah, we do), this is as good an opportunity as any to brush up on our Snake Face-Ology! Fun little trivia: In Dungeons & Dragons, “Gorgon” is reserved for a type of metal bull (long story), with “medusa” used for the snake-haired female creatures. A male D&D Medusa is called a Maedar. And now you know! Snake Face is technically kindasorta a Maedar! Sort of. Old-school Maedars looked human and could turn stones into meat, while newer Maedars have poisonous hypnotic gazes. Maybe Snake Face has some gender identity issues going on…
Real Name: Cyltho Ssstavvve Originally a minor training officer in the Unnamed One’s Serpent Army, Cyltho Ssstavvve drew King Hssss’ attention after he was enchanted with the ability to turn his enemies to stone by the Great Black Wizard. Quickly brought into Hssss’ inner circle, Snake Face™ often acted as the Viper King’s second in command during the Great Wars with Grayskull™. He was trapped with the entire Snake Army in the Void for five millennia, but eventually was called forth by King Hssss™ to do battle once again after their release – this time against new enemies – He-Man® and the Masters of Universe®! Snake Face™ slithers after his enemy, then turns him to stone!
Was there a sale on the letter V? Mattel needs to work on their names – which is funny, since “Cyltho Stave” would have been much less awkward and silly. But that’s this guy’s story. And in the MOTUC timeline, all the Snake Men died when He-man and Orko cast the “Spell of Separation,” which genocided them quite thoroughly. And took out peaceful snake people. Whoops! Okay, that’s Snake Face’s current spot in everything. Now let’s look at his presence in other media.
THE CLASSIC CARTOON
Nope. Nada. He-Man and the Masters of the Universe was already off the air by the time Snake Face’s toy came out, so he never appeared on-screen. Thus, kids had to rely on the toy and the mini comic.
THE CLASSIC FIGURE
Although Snake Face’s original figure looked a little chunky, but had one of those awesome action features where you’re not entirely sure how the mechanism worked. The snakes in his eyes and mouth could extend outward, which made him pretty creepy for an early ’80s child’s toy. You could also fold out some more snakes from the front of his armor, which completed his misplaced Medusa look. I assume that any hair-snakes were hidden inside his helmet. Sure, the action feature meant that he couldn’t turn his head, but we were kids. We ate this sort of thing up!
Snake Face had a few appearances in the mini-comics! Well, two. He played a pretty big role in Revenge of the Snake-Men, when King Hsss summoned his whole army, and used Snake Face as kind of a tactical nuke. Seriously, the guy stoned almost everybody. It backfired at the end of the comic when He-Man used his shield to reflect Snake Face’s gaze back on him, and turn all the Snake Men to stone, though. Snake Face later appeared in the Energy Zoids comic, where he turned Rotor to stone, and he also had a small cameo role in the He-Man comics by Marvel.
THE 200x CARTOON
Unlike in the original, Snake Face had a role in the remake! Snake Face’s tenure in the cartoon was actually really similar to the mini-comics. He made his first appearance when King Hsss and all his Snake Men were freed, and distinguished himself by turning SKeletor’s Evil Warriors to stone. He also shattered Mer-Man’s statue, which sent the online community all in a tizzy. No, really, I remember. Mind you, Skeletor fixed Mer-Man and turned him back, but we didn’t know that it was going to be that way.
Snake Face was instrumental in Hsss’s assault on Castle Grayskull, since having Medusa powers is a completely broken ability. This lasted until he fought He-Man, who had apparently read the comic and used his shield to reflect Snake Face’s stone gaze back on him. The Snake Face statue was kept in the dungeon for the rest of the series, and intermittently showed up in the background. He never got out.
THE 200x TOYLINE
The regular line of action figures died out before they could get around to releasing Snake Face, but he DID show up in one of NECA’s “Stactions” – immobile statues that looked for all the world like normal action figures. It had to do with licensing – basically, NECA was allowed to produce statues, but nothing with any articulation. So they got to release product that had been designed for the toy line, but never made it onto shelves. Unfortunately, these things are pretty rare and expensive these days. FUN FACT: With some time, effort, and a dremel, you can totally turn them into articulated action figures!
Snake Face’s Staction was a pretty good representation of his look in the 200x cartoon, even though it lacked his face snakes.
So, there you have it! Snake Face’s history in the Masters of the Universe universe! Wow, that sounded awkward and redundant. Okay… Snake Face’s history in the He-Man universe!