Masters of the Universe Classics is no more! In its place is Masters of the Universe Collector’s Choice, which… is identical. In fact, it’s just an extension of the old MOTUC with a few alterations – the figures are ore obscure, fan-demanded characters, there are fewer in the year (roughly half as many), and they cost less.
The first figure made is Lord Masque, who nearly showed up earlier – in a poll, he came in close second to Huntara, which made her controversial by nature. But thankfully, Mattel has decided to finish this guy up and get him in our hands!
But who is Lord Masque, you say? Why, he’s the servant of Shokoti! Remember her? In the two part House of Shokoti episode, Masque was the villain in part one, and Shokoti in part two. Basically, he hired villains and tried to unseal Shokoti’s temple. He was a pretty intimidating villain, and what’s more, he actually died! Orko pulled off his mask, He-man destroyed it, and this made him dissipate into nothing (apparently he was some kind of wraith, it’s not clear). This set the dark tone that was to follow in the next episode – you know, the Lovecraftian one. Masque was fairly unique among one-off villains in the show. Intimidating, not cheesy, and mortal enough to die, he almost seemed like something out of an ’80s fantasy movie rather than an extraordinarily cheesy cartoon. Well hey, we’ve finally got him!
Lord Masque can’t hide his true nature… he uses his mighty powers in service of Shokoti, but behind his demon disguise he’s nothing more than an evil shadow. A fan favorite from the Filmation series, Lord Masque arrives with a sword and shield.
5 Things to Know About Lord Masque
AKA: Kelson Van, Masque, Rakka
Known For: House of Shokoti, Part 1
Powers: Magiks, teleportation, shapeshifting
Associates: Shokoti, Trap Jaw, Count Marzo
Favorite Movie: The Man in the Iron Mask
Wait, that’s it? Dammit, I kind of miss the original bios now. Pbhhtttttthhhhhhhhht!
Well, now that the line has changed, surely the packaging has – wait, no? It’s the same! I’m trapped in the Twilight Zone!
Lord Masque is one of the more Frazetta-esque figures in this line. One could easily imagine him standing atop a mound of skulls, with half-naked slave wenches clinging to him as he wields a greatsword with his mighty thews. So yes, he looks awesome. Not too hyper-detailed and not too smooth, Masque is a nicely intimidating figure, and exactly what he should be in this line.
Nothing is wrong with Lord Masque’s sculpt. He even manages that difficult balance between cartoon smootheness and MOTUC detail, though granted most of that is because of the basic body he borrows. But he looks great no matter which characters you pose with him, and that’s fantastic!
There’s one nice little addition, too. The straps on his chest are, of course, removable, but the pegs used to hold them in place function logically, and are easy to pop apart and fasten again! A lot of MOTUC armor is kind of awkward, so this is a great relief.
Masque is cartoon-accurate, with the right mixture of browns to reflect his appearance in the show. The lines are clean, and there is no real slop to think of – although the hild of his sword tends to scuff very easily, with some paint damage even found in-package! It’s minor, but keep it in mind.
On an interesting note, this is technically the corrected figure – the original paint masters were npt show-acurate, and Mattel took the received criticism and actually instituted a running change, which delayed this figure considerably. But I think the delay was worth it – I’d rather have a toy done right, wouldn’t you?
Masque has typical MOTUC articulation, which fits considering that he is a basic MOTUC figure.
The good news is, even with a cape, nothing really restricts him. His briefs are small, too, so Lord Masque’s legs have a better range of motion than on most figures. He’s pretty solid in the articulation department.
Lord Masque didn’t really use anything in his episode, and you know what that means – filler accessories! Previous figures have supplied cartoon artifacts or alternate versions of He-Man’s sword, so what about this guy? Masque comes with accessories belonging to the New Adventures Thunder Punch He-Man variant – one we will likely never see (too similar to regular Thunder Punch? Not enough NA interest?). So the sword is technically a lightsaber. It’s rather high tech for Masque, but it looks oddly good in his hands. Of course, it’s also the Sword of Power, but you really can’t tell after the laser alterations. Interestingly, Masque holds his weapons left-handed in the package, so I stuck with that to display him.
His shield has a giant M for Masque… but so did the original, likely M for He-Man. The coincidence lines up nicely, though a neon green laser shield looks more out of place on him than a laser sword. Both weapons are astoundingly accurate to the orginals, though this shield is a little smaller scale-wise than the original. But you can give it to NA He-Man, Laser Light He-Man, or even Dare if you so choose!
They lowered the price! After taxes and exhorbitant shipping, the figure is still about $35, but that’s a lot nicer than the $40 and above we were experiencing before. Still a little expensive, but the lower price is reason to rejoice!
THINGS TO WATCH OUT FOR:
Masque is a genuinely solid figure, and you should have no problems with him.
WHERE TO BUY:
You could check Matty from time to time, but you’ll pretty much have to scour the secondary market for this guy.
Lord Masque is a great figure. Solid, sculpted and painted well, and including some pretty handy accessories, he’s really all anybody asked for = well, perhaps a removable mask would have been nice. Mattel has started 2016 strong, which hopefully bodes well for the remainder of this half-sized subscription. Masters of the Universe is not dead. I forgot to subscribe to the second, cartoon-based subsription, but I did get this one so we’ll be seeing it on the odd months, and Lord Masque is pretty true to form for the line as a whole.