BUT...the sub exclusive is paid for at the time of the subscription purchase, so technically it wasn't a drain on the wallet at the time. Anyway:
Fearless Photog! Yes, if any of your readers are not MotU fans, then you probably are wondering how the hell people are complaining about ANY of these toys when they were all clearly and equally insane. Well, this one is a little different. It was created by a child! Fearless Photog was a winner in a contest held by Mattel in the 80's; just one of those Create-a-Character contests you've probably seen before in video games or other toylines. A kid named Nathan Bitner won the contest...
...and nothing happened. Well, not absolutely nothing. He-Man.org interviewed him back in January, and according to that he still got the college scholarship part of the deal, along with a trip to Disneyland, which is awesome! Still, the whole get-your-toy-made thing never happened, since the MotU toyline kinda...died. So with the 30th Anniversary of MotU, Mattel decided to recreate the feeling of seeing brand-new never-before-seen figures. You know, like how toys used to work before the internet! You walk into a store, and BAM - who's that? New figures! So the 30th brings some new ideas to the table, but there was one place to start it all, and that was with the never released Fearless Photog.
I didn't take any pics at the time, but I snapped a few now to show 'em off:
Fearless Photog, according to Bitner, has a camera for a head and can film enemies and "drain the evil" out of them, which would be displayed on the lenticular chest. True to MotU form: the chest makes no sense and shows someone running on there, to display the whole film theme rather than any evil. That's not a bad thing, of course, because that is totally MotU! If there is any consistency in MotU, it's the nonsense. And honestly, as usual, it's just freakin' cool. The new bio kinda changes that a little, and I guess he films badguys and "displays their defeat" on his chest. Eh. Kinda nutty! But I like it.
Now Photog comes with two things, his original shield:
That was pictured in the original design; made to look like an old flash on a camera. And a CAMERA GUN:
This was added to give Photog something else; mostly because they usually give most figures at least two items. Funny thing about this is that Bitner says in his interview that he didn't want Photog to have any guns! Ah well; I certainly can't complain because that is hilarious and awesome. I love it. I am in love with it. You're invited to the wedding.
Now since Photog is kinda...all over the place - I've made up my own ideas for him. For one: he's a robot. I think he's sort of a cyborg, but I like him being all robot. For two: I've been messing with his abilities. I don't want him to have any sure-fire wins like a power that just drains evil or anything so weak that he just "displays your defeat", though I like a variation on that idea.
My idea is that his camera head can scan and identify, and his chest will display weaknesses 'n such, which is the displaying-of-defeat that the bio talks about. Photog is the on-site battle computer that can show you what you need to do. Now when it comes to fighting, I figure the camera can do other things as well; like copying attacks, magic blasts, or energy bursts. He can contain one at a time, and has to use them/fire them off before taking another. His gun can shoot on it's own, but it also contains the blasts 'n such to fire off. The shield, I figure, is just a plain 'ol flash shield to protect Photog and blind enemies to stun them long enough to scan.
So that's my take. As a toy, Photog is all kinds of fun! The camera has a "zoom" feature, the joints are all nice and tight and usable, and he just looks crazy and cool.
Now, the next three figures are The Sorceress, Shadow Weaver, and an important third:
Yeah, he kinda took over the show here. Sheer manliness will do that.
Lets look at the other two real quick:
The Sorceress is the one that took over The Goddess's job after The Goddess disappeared and Teela became herself or ---GAH. You remember all that crap from The Goddess post. Anyway, the Sorceress's vintage figure had Silverhawks arms and they popped outward and extended her wings. They wanted to do that with this one too, sadly. I understand the idea, but when they say "NO ACTION FEATURES" because they get in the way of the sculpt or articulation, then turn around and totally make an action feature that gets in the way of articulation...well it's a little annoying. The Sorceress's wings move up when you move her arms out, but sadly that ability comes with the wings being attach to the back of her shoulders. Soooo...you can't move her arms forward without the wings coming with them.
I guess it's not terrible; because what else does she need to do? Well...the answer to that is: Whatever I want. Everyone else can, so why not her? Because her wings have a feature. Ah well! Still a good looking figure, and as you can see; you can still get some nice poses out of her.
Shadow Weaver is a nice example of how to take a restrictive sculpt and make it work. She's in a cloak all the time, and they don't do cloth materials, so they made a rubbery cape kinda thing and attached it to the biceps. The legs are all they need to be, since she floats all the time, but they gave her the ability to bend forward and work her magic, so that's cool! Only thing is that her sleeves are only molded to look good straight forward; otherwise they're pointing out. Still...she's magical and crazy and I'm sure her cloak is always waving around at odd angles. I find myself not caring about it because the figure is so cool!
Shadow Weaver is from the She-Ra cartoon, and is Hordak's main magical lady. Head Witch, as it were. People have been clamoring for her because she was so important into the toon, yet never had an action figure! So here she is in plastic for the first time...as the subscription exclusive.
OOOOOH yeah that's how they do. I can't comment on that fully. I know that a subscription exclusive has to be an incentive - it makes you want to buy the sub. And MAN a sought-after character like that certainly fits the bill! But there's a certain point where it's too sought-after, you know? I think this would have been better as a regular release, because I don't see why people should be forced to buy every single figure when they just want some. For instance...what if you're just a She-Ra fan? You probably consider Shadow Weaver pretty important to your collection...but you can't get her unless you buy it ALL, or pay after-market prices on Ebay and the like.
*sigh* but that's the MotUC line. I've said before: it is not friendly to people who want to jump in the middle, and it's is getting decreasingly friendly to those who only want to get their favorites.
Now FISTO....Fisto will get his own post. Sorry. You have to wait.