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Vault Review:
MOTU Classics Shadow Beast

The paint job on this guy might seem very basic, but the more you look at him the more detail you discover, especially on the fur. His body has been molded in dark brown, but there’s this great dry brush effect of light brown topping it off. There’s also a light gradient of brown over his chest where the hair is thinnest. This helps give the figure that spontaneous look of real fur. I also love that they used gloss on his horn and finger/toe nails. Then there’s his glowing red eyes which couldn’t look more evil.

The negative part about the Shadow Beast using Gygor’s articulation is that he’s also as limited in movement as the big ape. His head is on a ball joint, but it doesn’t have the range of movement Gygor does. The Shadow Beast can only look down slightly and can’t look up at all. His shoulders and ankles are swivel hinges. He’s also got swivel biceps, wrists, and hips while his elbows are hinge joints.

The biggest problem with Gygor, and now the Shadow Beasts, is that they gave them swivel/hinge ankles but only swivel wrists. The majority of this sculpt’s movement takes place in the arms, while the legs hardly pose at all. Cutting the swivel/hinge joint out of the ankles and putting it into the wrists would add so much to this figure’s animation. They might not have known this for Gygor, but there should have been ample time to change this for the Shadow Beast.

The Shadow Beast comes with one accessory, a giant club. The word club doesn’t really do this weapon justice though. It’s literally a tree stump. There’s some great sculpting on the outside to make it look like bark, and the top actually looks like the chopped off end of a tree. You can even count the rings! To make the weapon that much more deadly, there are some metal spikes nailed to the outside. Plus, there’s a bit of electrical tape wrapped around the end for a much more comfortable grip while cutting down on the splinters and blisters.

The biggest problem with his weapons is that he doesn’t hold them well. I know Shadow Beasts don’t usually use weapons, but this still kind of sucks since it’s made for him.

This is actually a really great figure. I think I like him even more than Gygor because he’s actually from my childhood. He’d also be a perfect army builder if it wasn’t for the fact that he’s $30. I ended up buying two of him, and I don’t regret it. But I don’t think I’d buy more without some changes. I’d like to see Matty rerelease him in his classic purple colors. Then maybe brought back one more time in black with his double-horned 200X head (In “Classics” style of course). That way we could have a nice army of these guys without them all looking exactly the same.

For more MOTU reviews, check out our
MOTU Classics Collector’s Guide.

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13 comments to Vault Review:
MOTU Classics Shadow Beast

  • manekochan

    He does make that harness look good… Although, I think it is more of a BDSM kind of thing with him. You just know he’s going to be wearing that tonight when he’s down at the “Gothic A**hole”… trying to pick up Gygor’s mom… (which is why he’s screaming…)
    When he’s wearing that harness it, for some reason, makes him look like he’s got a superhero mask on, too. Odd… Am I the only one that sees that?

  • Sy Branch

    Another excellent review. Shadow Beast is by far the best looking oversized figure in the classics lineup. I brought 4 of him to build my army up & Gygor armor does look better on Shadow Beast.

  • dayraven

    the wife and i kind of agree that the size discrepancy between the wrists and hands, and the ankles and feet, make it look like a smaller creature wearing a shadow beast disguise. she mentioned waiting for scooby doo to unmask it.

    • AdventureVault

      It is kinda weird that he’s got entirely naked hands and feet, but I think it goes along with all the other crazyness in MOTU. So I’m cool with it.

  • Sector1014

    Love the pics! The beast lounging in the grass is awesome. 🙂

  • Logan

    I know scatt nuttlick (sp?lol) said that a Kulitak would be on a standard buck, but not only do I not trust him as far as I can throw him, but I think it’s completely retarded not to use this buck again for one of those guys. I understand that some of the 200x guys were oversized for style, but the Kulitaks were giant friggen snow beasts, and I think they’d work well on this giant body, especially since we now know that Marzo made the Shadow Beasts (which I like to think of as corrupted Kulitaks anyway).

    I might try to custom one of the three I have and see how it turns out, I could be wrong (it’s happened once or twice before lol) and if it looks like crap, I can always change it into some kind of Shadow Beast elder instead.

    Thanks for another great review! The only thing that might have made it better would be a Shadow Beast in a bow tie and cuffs doing a little lounge act, ha ha ha! I don’t know why that seems so funny to me, but it does. Don’t judge! 😛

    • AdventureVault

      Lol, Thanks. I do have a couple of tiny bow ties I used for my Dalek review. Maybe I should dig those out…

      Yeah, I think I’d like my Kulitaks to be giant beasts also. Just giving them Beast Man’s body wouldn’t look right.

  • Beedo Sookcool

    “Will Work for Widgets”! Love it!

    I think I’d also like to see a Shadow Beast in Filmation Purple, as well as MYP Black. Get a bit of variation in the army. So my voice adds to the army-building variant clamour. The MYP version could come with repainted Gygor armour and because of its extra horns, could be called an “Alpha Shadow Beast” or something.

    I’ve figured out why I love the head on this thing, and it’s not just because it looks like the 1980s Nostalgia Kick version of this beastie, but because it also looks so amazingly Ray-Harryhausen-esque. If you cross Harryhausen’s Horned Cyclops and Giant Ymir, you get this guy’s noggin. Sweet.

    • AdventureVault

      Thanks 🙂

      I’d really love to get the other colors, and a Shadow Beast leader would be pretty cool too.

      I think you’re right about the Harryhausen look. I wonder if that was an inspiration for the Shadow Beast designer?

  • Motorthing

    It’s an Ape. It may have a Princess Unicorn (TM Schrute Farms) horn on it’s head but it’s a stylised Gorilla Grodd, and as such I just can’t be assed to buy one.