There are only three guarantees in life: death, taxes, and He-Man variants. He who dies with the most He-Variants is the winner. Masters of the Universe Classics collectors are blessed because they have a constant stream of new He-Man variants that come in every year. Prior to last year all subscription exclusive figures were some sort of He-Man, but that streak was broken when Shadow Weaver came about. Thankfully this year we are back on track and the subscription exclusive takes us into the future where He-Man takes the throne, presumably after slaughtering Randor and Marlena.
Masters of the Universe Classics – King He-Man
Release Date: 03/15/2013 (Subscription Exclusive)
Faction: Heroic Ruler of Future Eternia
Real Name: Adam of the House of Randor
Now I must say that the idea of King He-Man was very appealing to me. When it was announced it wasn’t something I would have thought to ask for, but after hearing about it the idea was sound. I dug the face but felt the armor was a little bit off. The main selling point for this guy was the weathered 200x power sword. As soon as I saw the prototype of it I wanted at least two subscriptions, mostly for a browned power sword.
This brings us to today and the power sword is not nearly as rusty as the prototype. It still has fantastic paint applications, but the rust is a little lacking. Strike one Mattel.
My second nitpick is that I’m not sure of the direction they were trying to take with King He-Man. Originally with the broken crown (apparently this turned out to be an error with the prototype) and weathered power-sword I thought they were going for a more rough version of He-Man. Instead what you get is a more regal looking King, who has some scars on his face but for the most part he is presentable enough for a dinner party at He-Ro’s house. I guess it is unfair to hold my wrong expectations against him, so that’s why I consider it more a “nitpick” than a “con.”
It is worth mentioning that they continue to develop the technology for the armor and overlays on the figures’ torsos. A good comparison is He-Ro to King He-Man. Back in the first year or two of the line, armor such as He-Ro’s or Battle Armor He-Man was a hard plastic that would clip into place. Throughout the years this has changed to a soft rubber that now wraps around the body. This new armor actually works really well, fits fine, and seems to be more durable than the old method. I bring this up because a lot of people give their design team shit about changes they should make, (rightfully so) but some of these silent changes people weren’t really clamoring for are just as important and go unnoticed.
How does King He-Man rate on a scale of subscription exclusives? Or even better on a scale of He-Man variants? Let’s take a look and extrapolate the data.
There have been four total subscription exclusive figures: Wun-Dar, Preternia Disguise He-Man, Shadow Weaver, and King He-Man. It’s a little unfair because she isn’t a variant, but Shadow Weaver was by far the best subscription exclusive. I would say King He-Man comes in second as an all around figure though. Preternia Disguise He-Man was a cool but flawed idea, and finally Wun-Dar really did nothing for me (and I still don’t even own one).
Moving on to He-Variants we have a much larger pool to choose from, and no Shadow Weaver to take away the grand prize. It’s also a little dicey as to what specifically is a He-Man variant because we have figures like Vikor and Vykron who are concept of He-Man figures. I’m going to include concepts in this list as well because it’s my list and I do what I want to:
- He-Man (Original)
- He-Man (Recolored TRU He-Man vs Superman Pack)
- Battle Armor He-Man
- Prince Adam
- Thunder Punch He-Man
- Preternia Disguise He-Man
- Vikor (He-Man of the North)
- Vykron (Original He-Man Prototype)
- King He-Man
- NA He-Man (Upcoming)
There is a lot more competition in this bracket, but I still feel that King He-Man fairs pretty well. Vikor is far and away one of my favorite He-Man variants that this line has brought us. Not far behind Vikor I would stick Thunder Punch He-Man because I love the idea of He-Man going mad and punching everyone in sight. After that is the two flavors of the original He-Man. King He-Man comes right after the originals, and then after the King it becomes a slippery slope from “okay” down to “meh.” What all this bracketing proves is that it’s currently March Madness, and that King He-Man is a solid variant and good choice for subscription exclusive.
I think if you can see past some strange design choices in his armor you will probably dig King He-Man. He’s not the best, but is far from the worst. That kind of praise is probably warranted for a subscription exclusive because you don’t want something you can only get for a commitment to be too good. Last year I really wished I could have gotten at least a second Shadow Weaver, this year I am perfectly content with the two He-Men I got with my subscriptions.
Would you like to own King He-Man, the first of the faction “He-Ro Son of He-Man?” Well I would suggest hitting up Amazon and grabbing him while he’s still affordable. Remember Ram Man? What? He went down in price since last month? Well in that case get Ram Man this month and grab King He-Man next month! I don’t know, just do whatever makes you happy. Just don’t wait TOO long because stuff like Shadow Weaver is starting to reach the $200 mark and no one should be paying that much for a single figure. Unless you want mine. In that case call me!