Masters of the Universe Classics
$20 + shipping from mattycollector.com
I’ll never forget watching “Stand by Me” for the first time. Besides the obvious awesomeness of the movie overall there’s a particular scene that left a big impression. You probably know where I’m going with this, they take a short cut through the swamp and when they come out they’re covered in leeches. That left a pretty big impression on the young me and ever since I’ve been pretty freaked out by leeches.
I imagine that’s one of the reasons I’ve always thought Leech, the member of the Evil Horde that we’re looking at today, was so scary and awesome. He’s the creature that scared me so much in Stand by Me only magnified and made into a true threat, something that could actually hurt a full size person.
Leech’s old toy rode a long way on his gimmick, a set of suction cups that represented his ability to drain (suck) the power from his enemies. I remember sticking mine to every flat surface in our house and freaking out quite a bit when one of his hands came loose from me pulling on it to try and take Leech to his next location. While this new Leech isn’t sporting the same suction cups (boo) as his predecessor he’s still quite the scary looking fella. Does he live up to the spirit of the monsters he was designed to mimic, or does this new Leech just plain suck (sorry)?
Click inside to find out!
As usual, Leech is packed out in the standard, single card Masters of the Universe Classics card with the awesome green bricks and really well done paper inserts that look so nice. He looks really big in the standard bubble, it’s obvious from the get-go that this guy is going to be bulkier than most of the figures on my shelves. You can even see a little peek at his weapons hiding behind him which is a nice touch for Mint on Card folks. The packaging for my Leech is now sleeping with the fishes alongside an AFA Graded Jimmy Hoffa.
Leech’s Bio is alright, instead of him being a naturally dim-witted dude like he was in the cartoon he’s been “mindwiped” bye Shadow Weaver to follow orders. I like this sly mention of Shadow Weaver before it was official that Mattel could make a figure of her (they call her Hordak’s “lead witch”) quite a bit but the rest of the bio is very forgettable.
Sculpt, Paint, Looks:
Leech has a lot of brand new parts which is always very exciting for me, it opens up new possibilities and gives my shelves a bit more variety. The giant hands and feet, the huge toothy head and those teeth are all unique sculpts that won’t likely be re-used (unless they make BATTLE ARMOR LEECH one day). Leech has a decent amount of extra bulk, mostly from his chest piece. It’s not as big a difference as you’ll find between some Marvel Universe figures but it’s certainly noticeable.
I really love the scaley details on Leech’s hands and feet as well as all of the multi-layered plates sculpted onto his head and neck area. He’s also got this really cool sculpted armor that matches the lines of his body. It looks like it’s been designed specifically to be worn by Leech right down to the spikey spines that match up to his own vertebrae. I really wish, though, that something had been put on the flat bottoms of his hands. I don’t know what I’d want on there but they just look a little plain as they are.
It’s a bit of a downer that Leech is forever doomed to stare into the distance with his mouth wide open and it’s also a shame that the poor bastard can never see directly in front of his face. I’ve seen plenty of comparisons to the old toy that show why he looks the way he does but it doesn’t change the fact that Leech needed a closable mouth.
In general though, I am tickled green with the way Leech looks. The paint wash on his green parts give him a life that makes him downright fun to play with and to take pictures of. It’s really amazing to me how the same figure can, with a simple re-posing, go from hilarious and silly to menacing and scary.
Leech has all of the standard MOTUC articulation points and they allow him to get into just about any pose you’d imagine. He’s also has bonus hinges at the wrist which allow him to “POWER SUCK” your heroes powers convincingly! Even with the extra hinges it can still be a little tough to find a natural looking position for those giant hands but that’s not really a problem with the articulation.
Leech has a great ability to balance in several stances that would be tougher for other figures. His big ol’ feet make it really easy to find a pose and then make it work. The swivels and hinges work so well to give him that strong, steady base that Leech needs. Playing with Leech has just reinforced my great sadness with other toy lines that have eliminated the ankle rockers.
My Leech figure’s joints are all extremely tight to the point where they squeak when moved. The only exception to that is his ankles which are quite loose. I’ve used the squeaking as a kind of action feature to annoy my wife and it was only by making Leech look bashful that I avoided a serious beating.
Leech comes with 2 items that are pretty neat but probably destined for the parts bin. He has the usual Horde Crossbow that came with Grizz and Hordak as well as a brand new rubber net. The crossbow is just sort of there for me. It’s based on the same sculpt as the previous crossbows but has it’s own details as well as a nice clip to allow Leech to use it. It looks nice but I can’t really imagine Leech standing at a distance, taking pot shots at the good guys.
The net is a bit better in that it’s all brand new. It’s meant to be a sort of stand in, I think, for Leech’s old suction cups and it’s a nice idea for sure. It’s made of thin but durable plastic that makes it both easy to pose and infuriating to try and keep in one place. The suction cups work about half the time making it pretty frustrating to try and trap anyone in the net. I like the idea of the net and I absolutely love the Horde themed sculpt but it just doesn’t work very well in reality. Obviously Mattel didn’t have to include anything else at all with Leech and so I’m not complaining in the least.
Leech comes out a little ahead on the value for 2 reasons. He shipped during a month where he was able to split the box fare with another figure (Hurricane Hordak) saving me around 30% off the usual shipping per item. Leech also feels like a better value just because he is a bit bigger and has a lot of parts I’ve never seen before.
Leech is just as well made and sturdy as the majority of the previous MOTUC figures and so I don’t have a problem spending around $26 for him.
Leech has gotten a bit of a bad rap around the MOTU community. I’ve read complaints about everything from his open mouth to his cartoonish looks to his size and everything in between and none of those gripes are completely without merit. The thing is, if you look past your own expectations or those of the internet mob and take Leech for what he is, this is a great looking action figure.
It’s really not fair to compare Leech to the NECA Staction like so many have done. MOTUC Leech has joints, accessories and play value. The Staction was a statue, a 100% unique sculpt not restricted by the need to re-use parts or be able to move. I can completely understand folks who would’ve preferred a more 2002 style figure (even if I don’t agree) but you can’t use a mini-statue as proof of how MOTUC Leech should’ve been handled.
I’m excited every time we get a brand new, unique looking MOTU character to play with. Leech is a giant, green monster with sucker hands and mouth that is big enough to fit another character’s head into! I don’t think you need to have any nostalgia for the old Leech toy or even be a big fan of MOTU to appreciate that.
It’s time for a double dose in today’s Classic Comic Ad as this ad is split between two companies. The top ad is rather uninteresting to be honest, as it’s advertising a company that sells back issues of comics. Certainly it would be nice to catch up on those old issues, but that’s not really the star of this show.
Instead turn your attention to the lower half where the Hulk guest stars for the Boys Town National Hotline. With the tagline “We ALL must deal with the MONSTER WITHIN!”
I don’t have anything against the Boys Town Hotline, but I do wonder what problems this kid could have that would be comparable to being the Hulk. And if the Boys Town Hotline can solve the problems of the Hulk, why didn’t Bruce Banner ever call?
Anyone know if this number still works? Do you think I’m too old to call? I have a lot of mental issues. Maybe I don’t turn into a raging green purple pants wearing beast, but I got issues, man. I review toys for crying out loud!
This post brought to you by Untitled Jersey City Project. All opinions are 100% mine.
WWE Legends Series 2
7 Inch Scale
Kamala is one of the most recognizable faces on 1980’s wrestling and he maintained a presence until the mid 1990’s throughout both WWF and WCW. Kamala actually got his gimmick in Memphis, battling Jerry Lawler and his storyline of being a untrained savage from Africa was hardly out of place in the territory. He was able to take that gimmick and turn himself into an international superstar.
One of the more interesting things about this Mattel WWE Legends Kamala figure, is that it was even made in the first place. Kamala has been very outspoken about how poorly the WWE treated him. He has claimed racism and among other things, said that many upper management in the WWE wanted gay sex for pushes.
Perhaps the most interesting of all the allegations that Kamala has leveled against the WWE, is that he never made any money off of his figures. Kamala had an original LJN figure and he said he never received any money off of that figure. He apparently was owed 1/4 of a penny per figure sold. He then received a Hasbro WWF figure and he says he made about $10,000 total off of that figure. Even the 2005 Jakks figure, he claims he only received a few thousand dollar for. So yet, despite his claims of receiving little to no money and various accusations of unscrupulous business practices of Vince McMahon, somehow Kamala has yet another WWE figure.
I don’t know if poor Kamala is getting paid for this figure, but I can tell you that it’s his best figure yet!
The Legends packaging is pretty much the same as always, with a stylized photo of Akeem on the front and back. The back of the package talks about his infamous SummerSlam match with the Undertaker. It doesn’t mention this on the package, but according to Kamala, Undertaker was paid $500,000 for the match. Kamala’s paycheck? Only $13,000.
Actually, this sort of depresses me. Let’s hear Kamala sing and shoot in his semi-reality YouTube show…
This figure was listed as one of the Mattel WWE design team’s favorite figure and I can see why. It’s really one of their standouts and arguably the best figure they’ve done in the line.
The head scan is fantastic. Typically I don’t like a scan where the person’s face is doing an exaggerated expression, but in this case it works because Kamala is doing one of his patented face poses. Kamala was always making crazy faces and smacking his belly, so it works quite well. It also probably doesn’t hurt that Kamala looks the exact same today as he did in his prime, so Mattel didn’t have to touch up the scan at all.
The body is the same fat body we’ve seen a couple of times from Mattel in the WWE line, but it works quite well here. Kamala was never this buff, but I can appreciate the muscled look. It’s certainly better than the Jakks Kamala fat body.
It seems to me that part of his black skintone is painted on, but I can’t say for certain. One odd thing is that his skirt is made onto the figure. So you can’t remove it. You can lift it up, but you can’t take it off. The skirt doesn’t get in the way too much with posing, either.
The rest of the figure is pretty nicely done, with a nice barefoot mold in place of boots. It’s nice to see that Mattel went ahead and molded these, especially when it’s unlikely that too many others will use the barefoot fat mold.
The paint is really well done with the moon on his belly and the stars on his boobs. He has excellent face paint as well and there’s good paint work on his accessories. This is really fine work from Mattel.
Kamala has the standard Legends/Elite articulation with double knees, ball neck, torso hinge and the ball hinge legs. There are the normal assortment of hinges and swivels as well in the arms, wrists and legs. Because Kamala is a big man, his leg articulation is a bit more limited by the sculpt, but for the most part he is quite poseable.
He can do most of his poses decent, although I would have loved some chop hands. Kamala did a lot of chops and he can’t properly smack his belly with the regular hands. Not a major deal, though.
Kamala wasn’t exactly a mat technician, so you can probably get him into most any pose he actually did in real matches.
Kamala has more accessories than most WWE figures. He really makes out quite well.
He gets his African tribal mask, which is a must. It’s really nicely done and fits on his head perfectly.
It has a little strap on the back to keep it on.
He also gets his shield. He doesn’t have a spear, but I’m not too bent out of shape about it.
The shield has a handle which fits snug in Kamala’s hands.
His necklace is also removable and he gets a nameplate stand as well. This really feels like a great value at the price.
With a great head sculpt, great paint and a ton of logical accessories, Kamala is one of the best WWE Legends figures out there. He perfectly recreates a classic character and is bar none the best Kamala figure to date.
Packaging – 8
Sculpting – 8
Paint – 9
Articulation – 8
Accessories – Mask, Shield, Stand, Necklace
Value – 9
Overall – 9 out of 10
“Why your paycheck so much bigger than Kamala’s?”
“Kim-Chee doesn’t get a cut.”
Kamala is probably the best Legends figure in Wave 2 and one of the best overall Mattel WWE Legends to date. He’s got a ton of great accessories, good sculpting and he channels the legendary wrestler in every way. Hopefully the real Kamala gets some money out of the deal this time around. PUSH IT and PULL IT!