Life In Plastic: TOY REVIEW: Two Bad (Masters of the Universe Classics)

twobad

This review is just Two Bad.

Ah, Two Bad. His original toy was top-heavy, armed with only a shield, and its action feature was punching itself in the faces. And yet everything else about his design, from his differing heads to his color scheme, worked so well that you’d be hard-pressed to find any child of the ’80s who doesn’t have fond memories of this guy. Even households where he-Man was “satanic” somehow had a higher chance of secretly letting this mutant Ettin into their home (seriously. He was almost a fixture of Christian kids while I was growing up).

twobad-vintage

The original idea was that Two Bad would be half good and half evil, split down the middle. But since the toys were marked and packaged as either Hero or Villain, this idea was nixed and Two Bad became pure evil. You can still see remnants of his old design in his blue head, though. Also, there was his action feature. Two Bad’s arms were spring-loaded and curved in just such a way that if you pulled one back, it would punch his opposite face. The character was revived in the 200X remake series and given a proper origin, as well as a toy that could actually fight other people. His new Masters of the Universe Classics figure directly borrowed this origin, giving us his new biography.

***

Two Bad: Double-Headed Evil Strategist
Real Name: Tuvar and Badra
Originally hired as bounty hunters to track down He-man, Tuvar and Badra were magically fused together in an unrepeatable spell by Skeletor in retribution for their failure. Now called “Two Bad,” this new multi-headed creature became a mixed blessing for the Evil Warriors. When his two heads are working together, Two Bad is nearly as clever and devious as Skeletor, and his advantage in battle is doubled. However, his two heads rarely get along. Quite often the two heads will bicker with one another a just the wrong moment. Two Bad is double trouble, twice the plotting power of other evil foes.

***

twobad-argue

…And then nobody ever worked for Skeletor again, right? Right?!?! I mean, there are bad bosses, and then there are bad bosses. And this has to be one of Skeletor’s dumbest moves ever… and that’s saying something! I can just see his thought process right now:

“Nya ha ha! Tuvar and Badra almost defeated He-Man, but they lost because they couldn’t agree on anything. Therefore, instead of keeping them separate and giving them resources to try again, I am going to FUSE THEM TOGETHER! This way, I can trade two competent warriors for one schizophrenic loser! Nya ha ha!”

twobad-shirtless

Yeah. Anyway. Two Bad’s 200X figure was one of the best in the line, sporting a fantastic take on his lopsided nature – Badra’s purple side was even slumped and shaped differently than Tuvar’s blue. The new figure is more symmetrical because it is primarily in deference to the original figure, but it definitely has plenty of 200X references, as well. Two Bad himself has been one of the most-anticipated Masters of the Universe Classics figures, and rounds out Skeletor’s Evil Warriors. Or at least the ones who matter. Sorry, Ninjor, nobody cares about you.

twobad-packaged

PACKAGING: ****

2014 heralds the end of MOTUC’s white mailer boxes, replacing them with BROWN mailer boxes! Hey, anything to save some money. Also, Two Bad is posed in his classic “Stop hitting myself” pose, which is hilarious.

twobad-stand

SCULPT: ***1/2

Two Bad has a lot of new tooling. About the only pieces that I think are reused are his left bicep and thigh. His sculpt has a lot of fantastic details, but three flaws. We’ll start with the negatives.

twobad-whisper

The first and biggest flaw is that his heads are too close together. It’s something that you can’t really tell in photos, but shows in play – Baddra’s ears scrape against Tuvar’s face. Given enough time, this will strip the blue paint from Tuvar’s ear and cheek, and is very annoying. Secondly, Two Bad’s left fist is closed. This isn’t major, but it DOES mean that he can only wield weapons in his right hand. And if there is any character who should dual-wield, it’s Two Bad. And finally, his legs are of slightly different length. Although this one is an error, it is easily the most forgivable. Two Bad’s posture in 200X was extremely lopsided, and the leg issue here helps you simulate that. I like it, though a lot of people may not.

twobad-tuvar

Other than those three points, Two Bad is fantastic. He takes his classic appearance as a base, but adds the level of detail seen in his 200X toy – which makes sense, since the same guys sculpted both newer versions. The Tuvar side is blue, uses banded meta armor, and looks positively dignified when compared to his other half. With his fangs, eyebrows, and ears, he resembles a kind of vampire somewhere between Dracula and Orlok. His face shows off the kind of detail that males the Four Horsemen famous – from the haughty look in his eyes to the sneering curl of his lip, Tuvar’s side of Two Bad is fantastic.

twobad-badra

On the reverse, the Badra side is scaly and savage. Although he isn’t as hunched and bestial as in the 200X version, the difference in personality comes through. In contrast with Tuvar’s arrogant sneer, Badra’s big, ugly Orc face has a blank, unintelligent look, like he is still pondering things. But his scowl says everything – sure, Badra is slow, but he is about to hit hard. His armor is no less complex than Tuvar’s, being mostly leather with metal straps. His arms and legs also have fins, in a different pattern than on similar figures – Snake Face, for example, does not share any parts with him.

twobad-faces

Overall, Two Bad’s sculpt is great. His body is extra-wide, but does not seem unreasonable (though it could have been a little wider, or at least spaced those heads apart). He is the same height as virtually every other MOTUC character, which means that certain tall ones (such as Shokoti) dwarf him. But considering all of the new tooling that will never be used again, I think that’s fair.

twobad-tuvarface

PAINT: ***

Two Bad’s paint is fantastic… except for one major detail. Again, start with the bad… Badra’s armor is made of leather held together by metal. The metal is unpainted. The effect is very odd, and looks cheap. You can see it on his gloves and boots.

twobad-badraface

But other than THAT, his paint is flawless! The dividing line between Tuvar and Badra is smooth and straight, matching the vintage figure while contrasting with the 200X design. He has the right shades of blue and purple, and despite the one glaring omission, his Badra armor still has paint apps for some of the reddish highlights. The big thing is one of the smaller, more subtle details – something that every Two Bad toy has had, even if his cartoon models didn’t match – the eyes! Tuvar’s eyes have red sclerae with black pupils, while Badra’s have black sclerae and red pupils. It really hammers home the “opposites” theme, and also makes the Tuvar head look extremely creepy.

twobad-flex

ARTICULATION: ****

Two-Bad has ball-jointed heads, swivel wrists and waist, ball-and-socket shoulders and hips, hinged knees, elbows, and torso, and special hinged “rocker” ankles. It all works just fine. I should note that the ankles on my copy are particularly sturdy, which should keep him from falling due to his slightly more top-heavy nature than most. Also, his heads pop on and off with ease, which is great for repositioning, head-swapping, or removing his armor.

twobad-shield

ACCESSORIES: ****

Two Bad comes with his twin mace, his shield, and his chest armor. The mace is a great item, taken from his 200X appearance. That one was hinged, and this is not, but it still looks good. The shield came from his vintage appearance and is as shieldy as always. it clamps over his Badra wrist, with notches in the clamp slipping over the fins on his gauntlet. It is unfortunate that Two Bad cannot dual wield, but his weapons are pretty good for the budget of this line. His armor is the same old borderline sports bra as before, but with a nice detail – the buttons to hold it in place are on the back, and fashioned to look just like the rest of his armor. Not only do they not stand out, but they are pretty functional. This is one of the better armor pieces in the line because of its visible functionality and general sturdiness. Also, unlike some armors in this line, it is easy to put back on after you remove it.

twobad-doubledate

VALUE: **

Bleh. MOTUC figures cost $27 before shipping (which is fine), but then you get to talk on another $10 or so for shipping and handling, which is too expensive. I finally subscribed this year, which gave me a discount, but even then $35 is way too much when you consider how cheaply you can get figures of equal or better quality from other manufacturers.

twobad-skeletor

THINGS TO WATCH OUT FOR:

Watch out for paint scrapes, particularly on the Tuvar head.

twobad-rage

WHERE TO BUY:

MattyCollector did NOT have him up for sale – this guy was a subscriber bonus! They have to do this, or people will not subscribe and then everything ends. So go and hit up on-line shops (pick any of ’em), and expect to pay upwards of $50. I am sorry.

twobad-swapped

OVERALL: ***

Overall, Two Bad is a solid figure. He looks great, plays well, and is a lot of fun. All of his flaws are minor, but the big issue is that there are so many of them – his ears scrape together, he can only hold weapons in one hand, he stands lopsided, and his armor is underpainted. As a whole, the figure is still great (and I love the way he stands), but when you’re paying $50 or more (I didn’t have to! haha!) for a toy that you have likely been anticipating for years (Two Bad was on the top of most wanted lists since the line’s inception), these minor flaws really hurt the whole.

twobad-back

But I do have to insist that Two Bad really is a great figure. If not for the price, I wouldn’t be complaining so much. He is a lot of fun, it’s just that his flaws have pushed him out of the same “Outstanding” category as lastyear’s Snake Face, Mantenna, or Shokoti. He is better than Dactus and Fang Man, though, if that helps. I know that there are people who are going to take this and go, “Ha ha! Mattel sucks! Everything MAttel does rapes my childhood! Only an idiot would buy this toy! I am not pathetic!” But that’s an overreaction. This is a better-than-average figure that unfortunately costs as much as a fantastic figure.

twobad-dungeon

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s