In a seven figure subscription, Club Grayskull has given us six villains and one solitary heroic warrior. Skeletor, Trap Jaw, Beast Man, Evil Seed, Evil-Lyn, and now Clawful to one He-Man. That’s impressive! Usually it’s the other way around and you find your ‘good guy‘ toys have a real lack of villains to fight with. Then again, this is no run-of-the-mill retail line. This is Masters of the Universe Classics closing out its eighth and final year under Mattel. A toy series that is more comprehensive than the vintage line ever could have been, and managed to merge all iterations of Masters of the Universe under one banner and aesthetic.
It hasn’t always been easy. In fact at times Mattel and Digital River have made this hobby downright infuriating. However, looking over the collection I’ve amassed these last eight years it’s pretty clear that in the end Mattel did something special here. It’s not over yet, but Filmation Clawful is the final single figure release from Mattel so let’s take a look at him …
Masters of the Universe Classics – Clawful
Release Date: 12/19/2016 (Club Grayskull Subscription)
Price: $20.00 ($25.00 non sub)
Besides He-Man and Skeletor, Clawful is probably the one Filmation character that absolutely needed to be made in the first year of Club Grayskull. I’m not sure where the disconnect from toy to animation occurred, but somehow a crab-man was turned into a dragon-man with claw hands, for the cartoon. There are a few theories out there such as an early action figure prototype of the character looked more like the cartoon. A more reasonable sounding explanation is that they changed him because he was easier to animate the way he looked in the cartoon, specifically making his claws the same size. That makes a lot more sense to me than the Filmation show runners attempting a deep-cut throwback of an old Clawful prototype.
Clawful comes with a green mace and the ‘Horn of Evil.‘ The mace is a slightly retooled version of the one that came with the original figure. However, in true Matty fashion it doesn’t really fit in his hands that well. The left hand is too tight and the right is too loose! He can hold the Horn of Evil in his right hand, so horn blowing poses are possible and encouraged here.
I’m happy to report that Clawful does not have any of the disastrous sloppy paint issues that Filmation Evil-Lyn exhibited. It probably helps that he is a much simpler color scheme with most of his body molded in dark red plastic. However, the applied paint applications are clean and crisp, including the ones on the Horn of Evil.
With all the chaos of Mattycollector closing down I was a little bit worried about how Clawful would fare, especially after the shit-show that was Evil-Lyn. I’m happy to report that everything turned out alright, and my favorite Filmation character made a clean transition from the animation cel to a three-dimensional action figure. Clawful may be my favorite simply because I love the character, but he’s also a really great looking figurein his own right. Really, all of the Filmation or Club Grayskull figures were fantastic with the exception of she-who-shall-not-be-named-again.
Super7 should be revealing their Filmation figures at Toy Fair in February. Anybody have thoughts as to what they want to see? While I’d like to see a few more heroic warriors to even out the huge imbalance, my number one and two picks are Rattlor and Tung Lashor.
With Mattycollector closing down in the next few days, the best place to get Filmation Clawful would be Amazon.