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Mattel's Roto He-Man and Skeletor
by Mr. Stinkhead

I needed a fix. I needed a fix real bad. I am hurting for some new MOTU to consume, and I'm running real low on options. But just like a maternity bra, when one well had seemed to go dry, another one popped up right next door. I had yet to get my grubby mits on the relatively new Rotocasted He-Man and Skeletor, both available now.

Click to see!These guys are huge. Really huge. In fact the box tells you three times how big they are. At 11 inches tall, they clearly trample anything else in your MOTU collection. Skeletor is a truly faithful reproduction of the first edition Skeletor (from two years ago) and He-Man is in the never seen before Snake Armor. You can see from the first pic, that the original figure barely comes up to the waist of the roto-figure. The only downfall, is that they have to go near the back of the shelf as to not obstruct the view of the normal sized figures.

Click to see!Ok, ok, you're asking, what the hell is rotocasting? Or you do know the difference between traditional action figures and roto-figures, but what is it exactly? Well, the best explanation I can give you is from our friends at Raving Toy Maniac.

Rotocast figures may be new to many collectors, but the process is familiar to most people through the hollow chocolate Easter Bunnies that pervade shelves in the spring. Rotocasting (short for rotational casting) has gained much attention recently from the Hong Kong Vinyl explosion of urban styled figures. The process of rotocasting is less expensive than injection molding for most applications, and this has allowed many more small companies to become involved with the figures in small runs.
Source: Raving Toy Maniac

Thanks Bobbi and Rob! So you know that the plastic feels a bit different, but at 11" tall, they also feel real durable. Did you ever play with the 13" roto Hulk? They're just like that, however they're incarnations of two of the greatest action figures ever.

Click to see!He-Man in Snake Armor
First of all, I have to admit, I've always been the one cheering for Skeletor. Growing up, I always had Skeletor, my brother had He-Man. And with the latest wave of He-Man sculpts (I'm talking about all of 'em), I have not been converted. However I just came close. This Snake Armor get-up invokes a gladiator style, and looks real stinkin' sharp on the H-Dogg. Oh, this He-Man is not 100% roto. Bits and pieces are roto vinyl, the other pieces are traditional plastic. His torso, bare arm, and head are roto. The rest is solid plastic. Actually his loin cloth skirt is a nice, really flexible rubber. His shoulders are "ball joints" (not traditional ball jointing, but very close). His elbows and wrists are twist joints and his legs twist at 45° at the hip. He also has a twist waist. There is also his power sword that fits snugly in his right hand.

Click to see!Complaints
None really, this thing is a beautiful pieces of plastic. I was going to leave him on display at work, but I cannot let him out of my sight. I think it would have been great to have a place to stick his sword, or if he came with his shield, but honestly, I'm very impressed. And at $15, you're really doing well here.

Click to see!Skeletor
I have said before that I felt like the first edition Skeletor (of the recent series), is one of the best action figures ever made. Great character, great sculpt, great playability. So when I ripped this guy out of the box, I started drooling all over again. He does not look like a monkey. In the first pics of this series of roto figures that surfaced on the net, Skeletor appeared to have ridiculously sized hands and feet, and was often accused of looking like a monkey. Not so, once you have this guy out of the box, he looks just like Skeletor. His feet do appear just a tad longer than normal, but really nothing outrageous. He does however, look a little hulkin'. The shoulders are just a bit wider than normal, so he does look more imposing. His shoulder and groin flair are of the same soft rubber as He-Man's and they've got a great texture and flexibility. Skeletor also shares the same points of articulation as He-Man. Skeletor also has his twin bladed power sword, incidentally, it's a one piece sword, and does not separate.

Click to see!Complaints
Minor, however I do have one or two. The angles at which the elbow is segmented made it just a bit harder to get some of the cool poses I was personally aiming for. I would have like it to be a bit more of a slant, so that you could kind of straighten or bend the elbow depending on how it was rotated. That, and the colors on the power sword were switched! The skull face was bronze and the bird half was purple. I would have liked to have his ramshead staff, but I'm happy. Trust me, I'm very, very happy.

Click to see!The Final Word
Pleased, very pleased. In the current MOTU draught I'm going through right now, this was a welcome oasis. They were great to photograph, they're wonderful on display, and if you have younger hands in your home, they really can't damage these puppies. They're hard core. Or if you, yourself have mutant childlike hands, you won't feel so out of place, I guess. Go see a doctor maybe. Also when I found out it was only $30 for the set of two, I was impressed all over again. If you dig MOTU, or you're a vinyl junkie, either way, you'll be happy you tracked these down.

We got our He-Man and Skeletor together from in a two pack for $30.

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All figure likenesses, names and properties are copyright Mattel. All photographs are copyrighted 2003 by

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