MOTU Classics.Com:
The Mighty Spector Review

This has been a difficult Masters of the Universe Classics review for me, as the differences of opinion on Spector have been difficult to navigate. I enjoy the figure and I’m going to say so, but I’d also like the figure to be better and I’m going to say that too.

The problem in that scenario is there doesn’t seem to be a lot of good discussion when it comes to Mighty Spector. The divisions in the MOTU fanbase, in geekdom in general, often branch into hyperbole with each chasm seemingly larger than the last. Spector appears to have created a pretty big one and quickly at that. I haven’t participated in a lot of the Spector discussion because the general trend has to been to dismiss, which isn’t really my thing.

So let’s get this out of the way right in the front. Spector, as a character and as a figure, gets a lot more derision than he really deserves. For example, just the other today, I was interested in fan reaction to Sir Laser-Lot digital mini-comic. I read positives, I read negatives, stuff I agreed with, stuff I didn’t, but one thing that made me shake my head was the complaints about Spector in regards to this particular mini-comic. See, Spector’s not even in the mini-comic. His name was mentioned. That’s it. Whatever you may feel in regards to Scott Neitlich or Spector, it feels like we need to take a step back when the mere mention of his name is giving us pause.

My enjoyment of the figure withstanding, this isn’t going to be one long proselytizing article singing the praises of the Mighty Spector. Either you like him or you don’t. I’m not out to change that, but I do think we should be examining Spector as a figure and as he progresses as a character rather than give into dismissing him based on the inside knowledge of his creation. I love Scareglow even if he comes from a “silly filler” wave. If someone comes along and discovers that Snout Spout only ended up in the line because his creator had a hard-on fetish for elephants, we’ll… I’ll still love ol’ Hose Nose all the same.

What I’m saying is that the “why” of Spector was created doesn’t really matter. The fact that I’m okay with it or that any of you aren’t is going to get lost to the sands of time. Future generations, new MOTU fans, aren’t going to care. It will be the look of the character, his portrayal in any media that he’s fortunate enough to find himself in, that’s going to determine his value to the franchise. And, as such, his origin as Scott’s childhood CAC entry is just a footnote on what will or will not be a long history as a MOTU character. I don’t know how Extendar ended up the vintage line. I don’t care. I’m just ready for his Classics figure. I extend that same courtesy to Spector. If you can’t, I understand, but I would still encourage you to try.

Before I jump into Spector as a figure, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not sure how I feel about Spector, the character. Does he feel like a Mary Sue? Yes, but he hasn’t had the opportunity to show that he’s not. He’s got his own bio and a couple mentions in the other bios and the mini-comics. I see a lot of potential with him, but as a time traveler – he’s got a lot of potential for trouble too. It’ll be interesting to see what the folks at Mattel do with him and to see if the folks at Mattel remember he’s part of a large ensemble. While I lightly mocked it above, I do understand that the concerns over Spector getting a mention in that Laser-Lot digital comic. It’s mostly based on a fear that the powers that be won’t remember that Spector is but a small part of a larger mythos. Heck, we were reading a Sir Laser-Lot spotlight comic after all. I don’t know about you, but he’s pretty low on my list of characters I would want to read a comic about. Let alone be the character to kick things off.

With Spector’s background being something that ought to be set aside and his media presence still being minimal; we’re really just left with the figure itself. I like a lot of it. I dismiss the notion that it “doesn’t fit in”. Sallah over at MOTUCFigures did a great job of showcasing that the basic elements of the Spector design are complaint with 80s MOTU. Just as I dismissed the notion that Count Marzo didn’t fit in a couple years ago, I feel the same way now. The shared parts, the 4H sculpt, and the wide array of characters that MOTU has included over the years, gives Spector a MOTUC feel. Continue to Page 2

62 thoughts on “MOTU Classics.Com:
The Mighty Spector Review

      1. Wow, that’s great! Would I buy a spector repaint in white…? hmm… maybe I would.

        I also decided that the harness was the part that was bothering me. I tried some head swaps, but nothing really worked (the purple all the way up the neck prevented nearly all heads from looking ok). Finally I gave him a Zodac vest. He looks fine in either the red or the pink, even. He’s now a time-traveler, with a code of ethics, like the other cosmic enforcers. I have less temptation to treat him like Deadpool now. He lives on the shelf and not in the extras box, which is where his yellow harness will stay.

    1. yup… i want reverse negative spector NOW. you got BA faker… let’s do this next!

  1. And second, as the forum members know, reader Dayraven writes and/or re-writes a lot of the bios and I enjoyed his take on Spector:

    Real Name: John Spector

    Lt Spector was actively defending Eternos Castle during the attack by Skeletor’s forces when Skeletor brought the power of the Cosmic Key to bear. Spector courageously leapt in and attempted to rest the device from Skeletor, but the Soul Flayer and Time Song functions were accidently activated simultaneously. The device ripped Spector’s soul from him and dispersed it across many timelines simultaneously. Spector, grievously wounded but not finished, wandered the various times and locations of Eternia, trying desperately to find a way back. Eventually, he was aided by a coalition of the greatest minds of Eternia’s various ages. Eldor and Sharella jointly cast a spell that coalesced his body in one location and time, while Gwildor, Clamp Champ, and Duncan build a suit to contain his errant spirit and hold it in one place and location, the Vortex Suit. Gwildor equipped it with a simplified version of the Cosmic Key to keep Spector from dispersing all over the time stream again. Now, using his suit, Spector works as a spy and infiltrator, disguising himself as the Jack of Spades, a criminal from the Eternian past, allying with Skeletor to undermine his reign as king and serve information back to the renegade Masters. Using his Stun Gun and Memory Disruptor blade, Spector is the ultimate spy with an eye for danger!

    1. awwww… thanks noisy! i always strive to make my revised bios make more sense, or weave together elements of the existing mythos, but this was my first attempt to actually follow the “formula” of a motuc bio. glad you liked it.

    2. rest = take a break
      wrest = take something over

      decent review, but I still can’t get into this guy.
      (or the more mechanical characters. at least TJ has more human parts to fit in.)

      1. i noticed it too, the next morning after i’d typed it, but i couldn’t re-edit the post at that point, and noisy just cut and paste it here. thanks for reading it though.

        i agree on the mechanical characters point. to me, my version of he-man was the outcast barbarian guy from the first several mini-comics, and as such, i prefer that the technology be “lost” for the most part… a piece here and there doesn’t bother me, but making a whole civilization out of it seems problematic (which is what the MYP series did, and somehow, i enjoyed that… go figure.) trap jaw was easily excused because i prefer his mini-comic origin, a criminal from another dimension (so he doesn’t have to play by the rules)

  2. This was a very interesting review, and as usual the pictures really sell it. Snout Spout going “Peanut?” made me giggle way too much.

    I’ve not participated in much Spector discussion either, but I do share some of your thoughts on the figure. I personally don’t really care much about the bios included with MOTUC figures (I’d have rather just have had a ‘Name’ ‘Powers’ line and a piece of vintage style card art on the backs), so I don’t find him as offensive due to his promotion in that fiction. I mean, it’s easy enough to ignore, if one wants to. It is a little bit odd that in a year that celebrates a very diverse franchise, large portions of which are -still- unexplored and underexposed, that we are giving the spotlight to all-NEW characters instead of any of the dozens of old ones, but I guess that’s what the powers that be thought would be a good idea.

    However, there is one thing that doesn’t work with Spector in my opinion, and which makes him kind of uninteresting: His design.

    Now, your mileage may vary here, but in my view, the great thing about the MOTU franchise, and one of the cornerstones of it, is that characters have silly descriptive names and costumes that evoke whatever their speciality is. Snout Spout is an elephant dude who shoots water. Fisto is a guy with a big fist. Mekaneck is a guy with a mechanical neck. Clawful is a crab dude. And so forth. Spector is… a guy in a purple unitard with a playing card on his chest, with a name that’s related to optics, and his power is… time travel. There’s a kind of creative dischord here, where nothing really fits in to make a cohesive whole. This isn’t a slam against Scott Neitlich, because I would probably do the exact same thing in his position, but Spector really feels like the kind of character you would create when you were five or six by just piling things you think are “cool” onto a blank figure on a piece of paper.

    Now, naturally there are plenty of MOTUC figures that don’t follow this thematic unity thing either. The mentioned Count Marzo, for example, although that character does have the benefit of having more fictional appearances. But in my mind, this is what makes Spector kind of weak. As you said, maybe in the intervening stage between concept art and execution more could have been done to “MOTU-ize” Spector to make him fit better. Make him wholly playing-card themed, or make his powers light-based. I dunno. What’s done is done, and unless Scott goes back in time and changes Spector’s design, this is what we got.

    Anyway, sorry for the rant. As I said, love the balanced review!

  3. Excellent review, as is the norm! As for the comic panels, one of the best stories I’ve seen on here in a while. Loved it, right down to the moral at the end!

    Apart from the aforementioned spade design and the weird elongated eye-holes or whatever they are, I actually quite like this figure, even though it looks like a run-of-the-mill 1990s comic book character. (Probably with a name like Deadstorm, Villifier, or Assassin-13.) Mine came with lovely firm joints all around and very little off-target paint (apart from the digits on the vambrace readout, the one place where it REALLY counted). As for the character, still undecided. Not enough accumulated material.

    But what’s this Sir Laser-Lot digital mini-comic you mention (twice)? I must’ve missed a memo somewhere.

  4. Not a bad review, and the pictures were great. More sites need to include humor with their reviews.

    For a figure so divisive and derided, I love that he has possibly the longest thread over at Loved or hated the figure is definitely popular. He’s sort of like the Paris Hilton of MOTUC (minus the sex tape). In a month where I got SlushHead, GasGunk, and Specter, Specter has been getting a lot play time. He’s currently hanging out in the kitchen, assisting in the making of red beans and rice.

    Like others, I dismiss the MOTUC bios, and like Sandman I think the name should reflect the role and/or abilities. So “The Mighty Spector” is now “The Specter”. I have zero interests in time travelers, so he is now Eternia’s most prolific thief.
    The Vortex Suit is now the Phase-Shift Suit; instead of time travel it’s power is intangibility. The Specter can walk thru walls. Not a bad asset for a thief. The ace of spades is the calling card left at the scene of each crime. Much like the ace of spades in the card game “Spades”, Specter (a rather arrogant bastard) thinks himself unbeatable.

  5. It took awhile but this figure finally grew on me. Being than he can travel back in forth to the past-present-future really made a member of the Masters. I wish there really was a real time machine suit–Man I’ll be rich! Cool review by the way!!

  6. Well, I’m gonna step up as one of the “naysayers” here.

    If Spector is a fun figure, I submit it has nothing to do with his design, and everything to do with the 4H’s buck (which is inherently a great toy, without a doubt).

    No offense, but anyone who truly thinks Spector looks or feels MotU, I would be very curious to know what they think it even means to be MotU-ish.

    Every brand has to have a central identity, and that doesn’t automatically allow for comic book heroes or simply “fun toys” to be inserted on a whim.

    Otherwise, Wolverine and a Slinky could be considered MotU in their own right. 😀

    I feel like the MotU waters have already been muddied enough over the years. I guess I just wish that could stop, and we could focus on what has made the brand live this long in the hearts and minds of fans.

    Also, I’d like to add that discussion of Toyguru’s actions with regard to Spector are completely separate from comments about the figure and design itself, but IMO both are equally and individually deserving of the backlash. There is unprecedented reaction to all of this not due to popularity or savvy rabble-rousing, but to a failed design and the cumulative questionable public behavior of its creator.

    1. I think it’s because, in the finest MOTU tradition, he’s made up of heavily re-used parts that makes him “look and feel” MOTU-ish. He’s mostly the same basic body parts we’ve seen loads of times before, with new armour, weapons and head . . . which is pretty much what more than 50% of the original MOTU line was. Heck, Moss Man & Stinkor didn’t even get any new parts for themselves, just new colours on old parts and a smell each. And a bit of thatching for Mossy.

      So, really, his construction and therefore essence is very MOTU. But as I say above, aesthetically, he looks like any number of wannabe bad-ass 1990s comic book characters. (Probably with names like Obliterator, Deadeye, Killshot, or The Masked Fatality.)

      1. But you’re just providing an intellectual explanation for how he fits into MotU, one as if delivered by a robot.

        (“Use buck . . . zzt . . . new head . . . zzt . . . new armor . . . MotU character . . . complete…”)

        And then you go on to reiterate (correctly) the 90’s comic book superhero look, which has exactly nothing to do with MotU’s visual aesthetic, from ANY era.

        Besides, the parts-sharing aspect should be the last consideration, only after a solid MotU design is in play, and only then should the question turn to “How do we best (most cheaply) execute the design?”

        After all, MotU didn’t and doesn’t have monopoly over heavy parts-sharing, another reason why I don’t see parts reuse as innately MotU-ish.

        I mean I get it, I wanna see the 4H make modern GI Joe and Marvel figures as much as the next guy, but that doesn’t mean we should shove ’em all into the MotUniverse. 😉

        1. i am definitely one who feels that spector as a character does not fit in the existing mythos, but let me make this case back at you lay-ze, for why the figure does… vykron. roger sweet was illustrating, even before the line got launched, that “he-man” could be anybody, do anything… and he made the vykronies to prove it. the intent of he-man was to kind of embrace a larger concept, that the hero guy could go anywhere and do anything as the market required/allowed…

          now, the incarnation that you and i were raised w/ started out as fantasy barbarian, but then we got new adventures, and all bets were off… spector easily looks like he belongs in the new adventures era, and maybe that’s where goofball should have amended his bio… but clearly, he’s not the most imaginative soul.

          but then we got MYP, and they added a lot more tech influence into the mythos, and they warped the barbarians to truly superheroic proportions, and added some new characters, and made some major overhauls to existing characters… and it worked. they really muddied the waters, but it worked, sorceress got wings, skeletor got a combining sword, and zodak got a K and a brother… why is any of that acceptable but spector is not? does he have to pass through king hsss’ GI tract first?

          although, i will say this… yaysayers giving the “well of course he’s motuc, he’s made of motuc parts” is kind of a preposterous argument… frankenstein’s monster was made of people, did that make him one of us? acuras and hondas share a ton of parts, yet are VERY different vehicles in completely different price ranges. a frittata is not a quiche either… see where i’m at here folks? there’s a spirit of spector that is, as repeatedly pointed out, very 90’s comic books, that is clearly not inspired by a barbarian fighting a skull faced wizard.

          last thing i will say on this topic… as a toy, spector is awesome. he has no design elements encumbering the articulation, so he’s one of, if not the only, character released so far that truly illustrates how well designed the basic buck is. there’s a lot of positive to be said for play value, and this dude says it.

          1. To touch on several of your points, DR . . .

            First, with the He-Man Trio, this was essentially Roger Sweet shooting in the dark. He knew he was onto something cool, but because he didn’t have the idea totally gelled in his mind, he figured the best way to a green light was throwing everything against the wall to see what stuck. He’s lucky Mark Taylor already had a vision and an understanding of what would become the MotU we know and love.

            So yeah, just because MotU’s earliest origins were 100% catch-all doesn’t mean that’s what MotU should be today. I mean, if Spector is fine and dandy, then why not Deadshot? Or why not Voldemort as Mr. Shadow Weaver? How about a Ghostbuster to go after Scare Glow? Where does it end before the brand identity is completely watered down to the point of utter nonsense?

            As for the relaunch, the thing I was most a fan of was the 4H’s attempt (and successful way more often than not) to individualize these characters who had been clone-ized simply due to the realities of toy making and profit margins, but with nothing whatsoever to do with artistic intent. So the 4H corrected that by giving each character not only their own sculpt, but frequently their own scale, their own space to exist with the other characters.

            Good example is Snout Spout, who started out design life pretty cool and interesting, but was watered down (bad pun intended) to a fun toy for kids, sure, but a pretty lame figure, and one that did not stand the test of time. Snout Spout, as a Staction, redeemed all of that and then some. It was able to reach back to the original intention of the design and realize it in a way that resonated with fans like the original never could.

            And that’s the main issue here, is that I think people are holding up the wrong standards. MotU is not defined by goofy, poorly-executed kids’ toys and dopey old toons, so when you apologize for crap by saying it was all crap anyway, that’s just a lazy cop-out IMO.

            1. the problem is, throwing shit against the wall to see what sticks IS the hallmark of motu. the taylorverse was a fart in the wind, here and gone… look at the waves of toys if you doubt me. the tight adherance to the original story went out in wave three, and suddenly, we have odd characters w/ scales and two heads, crab dudes, we eventually got a dude w/ car parts in his chest for chrissakes. hell, i would argue that even ram man is pushing the idea, as the oingo boingo legs are definitely not “renegade barbarian hero protects magic castle from evil skull-faced wizard” there’s nothing conan inspired by oingo boingo legs.

              again, i think the design of spector would have been more acceptable if he’d been presented as i did, which doesn’t let him deus ex the story line whenever he wants, or if he’d been presented as an NA character, cuz that’s more in keeping w/ his visual feel (and pigmentation). the horsemen have, to date, released the only new character who appears to “fit” in the original taylorverse incarnation of motu, both due to his stark color combinations and his visual theme.

              1. I’m not saying the Taylorverse is the be all end all, with room for nothing else. But the notion that MotU is a total fair game, 100% free-for-all is simply untrue. And at the very root of that is why so many had the initial (correct) reaction that “this doesn’t feel like a MotU character.”

                You say Spector’s a better fit with NA, but I feel like you’re saying that because he really doesn’t fit in anywhere, and NA being more futuristic is a better home for a time traveler with a few gadgets. But really, NA is space, and the villains (Spector’s design looks and feels totally “bad guy”) are crazy freaked out monsters, so I don’t see Spector there either.

                The simplest explanation is usually the best one, and in this case, Spector was NOT designed to be a MotU character, therefore he doesn’t fit in very well. It’s really as simple as that.

                Guarantee you beyond the shadow of a doubt that if he had appeared first as a DCUC figure, but with every single design element exactly the same, only transported to the DCUC buck, that not one single solitary person in a million years would say “Hey, he kinda looks like a MotU character.”

                And if that’s not THE test, then I don’t know what would be.

                1. That can’t be the test because it could be used to eliminate tons of other characters. Drop Skeletor into Skeleton Warriors, Ninjor into the Chuck Norris line, Snout Spout into TMNT, Scareglow into Ghostbusters, Rio Blast into Cops n’ Crooks, Buzz-Off into Sectaurs, so on and do forth. MOTU, the brand, is just about shoving crap into one mythos. This is Mattel; there’s no sanctity to protect when it comes to the toy line other than the ability to be all-inclusive. Why are we drawing the line after the ninja, cowboy, and cyborg elephant firefighter? I know some folks want it to be more fantasy/barbarian, but that ended with Zodac being interpreted as a Green Lantern and was demolished shortly after.

                  1. A semi-solid argument, but first, you’re not exactly choosing the most iconic MotU characters in your list. (And I could argue how those figures would stick out in those lines.) But you’re also listing toy lines that followed and were very much inspired by MotU, so of course certain designs would fit in decent enough with subsequent toy lines specifically aimed at copying MotU’s success. 😉

                    I know what you’re trying to say, but there definitely is a “MotU feel” that exists, and if people choose to ignore it to allow for anything and everything through the gate, I suppose that’s their prerogative to welcome Spector and anyone else that comes down the pike. I just don’t understand the surprise from some people that not every character design gels well in MotU.

                    For my part, I definitely not a staunch “Conan or nuthin” MotU fan. Been having an awesome time with my newly acquired Slush Head and Photog figures. I know it can be a tricky balance, but in the case of Spector, it’s clear the effort to MotU-ize the design wasn’t even made. Scott said himself that many of the mock-ups were better, but it’s his figure, and he got it made the way he wanted it.

        2. You asked why we feel he looks and feels MOTU-ish. I gave you my answer; no need to be so rude about it, just because you don’t like the character and/or disagree with my reasoning. As far as I was concerned, Rio Blast looked like a reject from the Bravestarr series, but I was glad to have him in my collection.

          I’m pretty sure that parts sharing WASN’T the last thing on Mattel’s minds for character creation, back in the day. It was probably the second thing, right after what new gimmick or action feature they could use. Cheap ‘n’ cheerful, that’s the hallmark of a MOTU character for me.

          Anywho, weird aesthetics aside (no, my mind still rebels at the spade on his chest, and yes, I agree that he does feel more New-Adventures-ish in overall tone than “Vintage”), it’s a solid (if unexciting) figure with well-combined re-used parts as far as I’m concerned. I never said he was going to be my favourite character. That would have to be Man-Tis, Evil Master of Ambush Attacks, my own Create-A-Character entry from the 1980s, which I was unable to resubmit since I no longer live in the USA. Not that I’m bitter. };D

          1. Have you seen vintage character design artwork?

            Relatively little of it features buck parts, but instead was, yes, trying out an action feature, but also focused on a solid character design.

            This is why we ended up with so many 100% unique sculpt characters back in the day, because the idea was so cool and there really wasn’t a way to make it happen with the existing parts.

            1. No, I haven’t seen much of the vintage character design artwork, beyond what showed up in that TOMART a decade back. Granted, we got a good number of all-new figures towards the end of the run, but regardless of what the original designs and prototypes looked like, we ended up with A LOT of characters with A LOT the same parts.

              It seemed to me that it was only when MOTU started outselling Barbie and Hot Wheels that Mattel decided to sink a little more money into the line and allow for some more variation.

    2. I fail to see how anyone can think he doesn’t look MOTU. As so many people have pointed out, he’s made almost entirely of MOTU parts.

      This isn’t a criticism so much as genuine bewilderment – I honestly can’t figure out this ‘doesn’t fit’ concept. Is it the spandex? Unless guys like Man-at-Arms and Flipshot are suffering some serious physical defects, they’re wearing skin-tight onsies too. Perhaps the harness? Lots of other characters are wearing those – including the main man himself. Admittedly few of them skew so close to the tech end… except for a large chunk of the NA roster.

      Even the playing card motif is fine for me – Noisy mentions the appropriation of card suits for Bow and the cross for He-Man, but far more obvious is the giant H on his thunder-punch armour; heck, if they can use our alphabet, why not a spade? Perhaps the future Eternia the suit hails from just had a greater degree of Earth contact.

      Other than that, the only thing on the poor guy that could be objectionable is the head. Granted, there are few MOTU characters with full-face masks. Alright, possibly none. And a head sculpt can go a long way to setting the visual tone for a whole figure. But that design’s not exclusive to 90s superheroes in and of itself, and with the sheer diversity of head types in the line – bee dude, blue-faced samurai, mecha-elephant, ninja, pill-jawed robot – I think we can handle one mask of this kind.

      Honestly, I don’t think MOTU has a central identity – not past its first wave, if that. Other than its basic big muscles archetype, and the various artistic styles employed with each new incarnation, neither of which Spector violates with his tiny number of new parts.

      Having said all that… he is kind of bland! I love me some purple, but – like Laser-Lot – I do feel he needs something to break that up. MAA would probably look just as dull if he didn’t have lots (aaaand lots) of very orange armour to make him look a touch more interesting. Perhaps some Eternian guard armour in yellow might help?

      (I do love the review though – especially the timey-wimey visual effects…!)

  7. i think this guy is pretty great. and he most definitely fits in with the MOTU idea, which is fantasy and sci-fi together in one world side by side. i know most people favor the fantasy side more, but come on, i really doubt if spector was in the original series he wouldn’t have been a favorite. maybe it’s just me,but he kind of reminds me of a snake-eyes type, and i’m a pretty big snake-eyes fan. as far as the toy goes, i was pretty pleasantly suprised, because i thought the pictures made him look plainer than he actually is, the yellow harness and the spade, to me anyway seems much less obnoxious in person and he seems to have a lot more going on than i thought he would.

  8. Great review, u nailed my feelings on this figure right on the head. I dont like everything about the figure, but thats mostly the yellow harnass. If i could, id paint it a metallic gold. Any other problems that i have are certainly not about the figures creator or inception in to the line. Am i jealous? you bet, but i cant say id have not taken the same opportunity because id be a liar if i did.

    Hes a good solid figure that fits in to the masters universe. Anyone who says differently are ignoring what motu was/is. The only other issue i have is time traveling. I hate it. It feels over used in media and never has a set rule to it, but time traveling isnt new to motu, soni cant blame the idea on spector or scott.

    Also, loved the moral photo

  9. The Spector debacle was worth it for this cartoon. The best since Hourman. As long as they keep this nonsense in a separate sub, I’m fine with it

  10. I always enjoy reading these reviews, i think these pics were hilarious. I picked up this figure…and i don’t mind it….but i think i just love action figures….so…..yeah….i would probably pick up a variant “white” one too.

  11. My main problem with Spector is probably that compared to Draego-Man, he could’ve just been so much MORE.

    I’m sure it’d be fun for me to insert one of my childhood creations into a line (and make automatically buy it), but I’d probably, you know, ask professional designers to update the look a little bit. Preteens tend not to have, you know, a great sense of design.

    Draego-Man is pretty (masters of the?) universally loved, Spector is pretty universally disliked. And that’s because one is a strong design, and the other is not.

    1. “Pretty universally”? Sort of like “almost always”. Or “unanimous, but with objections”. If Specter was so “universally panned then he wouldn’t have spawned a 113 page discussion on the Org. Don’t confuse squeaky wheels with majority opinion.

  12. I applaud the lack of reference to the symbols of Spector’s wrist, because using them would have been too easy to make a joke about TMS
    Here’s my beef with Spector

    Sure his body is mostly made from reused parts, but there’s no relationship between his name, look, title, and possible action feature.
    Fisto: Big Fist, Mer-Man: aquatic dude, Zodac: cosmic enforcer. Before anyone screams Zodac has nothing that says Cosmic enforcer on him, look at him and his name… Zodac is one “i” short of Zodiac… Zodiac, constellations, cosmos, he looks a bit alien-ish and is the only one with a laser on the barbaric first wave…

    Now let’s look at The Mighty Spector: Heroic Master of Time Travel.
    Does he look like a time traveler? Does his name evoke Time Traveling? His action feature evokes Time Travel?
    OK, we don’t know how a time traveler would look, but TMS looks Liefeldian… (and that’s not a good thing… Dear time travlers, please don’t use Leifeldian costumes to travel to the past!!) Spector sounds like Spectre, maybe if he was some sort of Commando like Snake Eyes or Solid Snake his look and name could work… If he’s some sort of time traveler his Light Saber action does not show it… (a color changing from solid colors to clear would have worked as a way to show his Time Traveling powers)

    Now the SPADE on his chest… There is no sound reasoning for it aside from his creator liking Spades. He-Man’s Iron Cross has a reason to be there. (Go beyond the whole Iron Crosses are for Nazis thing) Webstor’s design is similar to the patterns on a black widow spider, Even Bow’s heart has a reason… (Think Cupid) (I’m not so sure on Zodac’s though… (The /_|_\ kinda looks like a stylized crown or a weird scale showing balance)

    He’s basically a Mary Sue. Most Loyal of ALL The Palace Guards Guards with the Godly Power of Time Travel, who can whisk whoever from the Timeline because King Scapegoat…I mean He-Man tells him to do so. He’s so powerful that he can sense disturbances in the timestream.

    So he kinda looks like a Liefeld Character… Big Boots, Big gun, Pouches, a facemask that obscures the face (for easier drawing) the most positive thing that I can say about him is that he’s great for Custom fodder and that the iCosmic key is nice!

    Now the last step on my beef with Spector has nothing to do with the character, but Toyguru’s actions and reactions…

    First, the name. The Mighty Spector as in Lt. Spector (The guard that IS Toyguru) becoming a Heroic Warrior… Since he already got his Spector in the line with the Palace Guard, why not choose a different name for his Time Agent?

    WHY is he a “Time Agent”? Basically Spector CAN rewrite History… (and he has) the same way Toyguru is rewriting MOTU’s Universe…

    Isn’t it kinda funny how a supposedly “peripheral” character has become a KEY Player… Especially after all the backlash it got.

  13. I think He-Mullet hit a lot of the things that boil around in my head on this.

    I can’t disconnect the figure from the ego/arrogance of ToyGuru.

    I’m in the camp of “he’s not MOTU!” and for the life of me I cannot say why that is. SOMETHING is missing. When he was announced I joked it was the furry loincloth but of course that’s nonsense as not every figure uses that. Yet saying that, I can’t help but feel that if he DID have the furry loincloth more people would be on board. It’s silly and inane and frankly stupid but it’s something on that order that’s bugging me.

    I think the lack of a pseudo action feature is part of it. Maybe a backpack. Or shoulder pads. Something that ‘calls back’ to him being a Royal Guard.

    THAT’S it. that is it! He needed something that harkens to the Palace guards!

    Noisy, a very special favor. Can you take (and post) a pic of TMS with a MAA shoulder/arm armor on his right arm? Dunno if (if used) they would have colored it purple or yellow (steel gray like the boots?) so I’m not sure what to suggest, just go with your instincts. 🙂

    1. Ego and arrogance of ToyGuru? I keep reading this complaint, but I never see it in the interviews, videos, or podcasts. He always seems to be a fairly low key, down to earth kind of fellow. On the last RoastGooble podcast he was laughing and joking about all the Specter hate. Maybe my idea of arrogance is skewed because I grew up with amateur and professional boxers and am used to the endless amounts of smack talk fighters are capable of. I just don’t see his supposed arrogance.

      If arrogance is that ToyGuru got to put his own creation into an optional subline, then wouldn’t Terry Higuchi, the 4 Horsemen, and the Mattel sculptor/s be guilty of the same crime?

      1. He seems like a nice guy when he’s talking in person… but when he posts on forums his posts are written in a way that may sound arrogant or condescending when read by some people. He tends to rewrite history at times… He asked the 4H to make him a guard, then the story was changed to the Horsemen doing it as a surprise to him.

        It’s not that it’s his creation what seems arrogant; it’s that his creation is basically an idealized version of him who rose from a “Redshirt” to “key player” because his creator is in a position of power. I’d WISH they had hyped Draego-Man and Photog as much as they have hyped Spector and SLL…

      2. my question on this would be, how many boxers do you know who changed their name to “Boxor” and created a league and a title to give themselves? then asked a few of their friends to fight in their made up league? but refused to share the title belt regardless of if one of their friends proved to be more popular than they are?

        cuz kinda, that’s what he’s done. he became brand manager, he forced his own avatar into the mythos, and gave it a wide narrative berth that in many ways displaces the hero, and then talked about that move EVERYWHERE to drum up hype. he kept a design he came up w/ in the 90’s, and claimed that it was done in the 80’s (which had ZERO design reference to inspire that look at that time), and didn’t change it to match the aesthetic of the modern line he was working on, nor to seem particularly remiscient of any previous line in the property. let’s get real man, that characer design is so liefeldian i’m amazed he has feet. he injected a superhero into a barbarian fantasy world… albeit one w/ laser cowboys and elephant fire fighters, but still… they lack the power to dramatically alter the narrative landscape, while spector’s progenitor has given him the means and the will to do just that.

        1. DR, I might agree if the toy line was renamed “Specter and the Masters of the Universe.” But it’s not. Specter is a bit deus ex machina, but then so are clones, other dimensions, and brain washing. Plus, Specter isnt even the first time traveler. Sorceress, Evil-Lyn, and Evil-Lyn’s papa seem to toss folks thru time fairly easily. It’s a bit early to tell how much influence the Specter will have on the whole MOTUC discontinuity over all.

          As for “dramatically altering the narrative landscape”, it would help if there were a narrative landscape to start with. The whole character bio thing is a travesty. Poorly written. Often times trying to cover too many points of interest in far too little space. Way too many cliches. No convergence to a central story line. So on and so on. It’s no wonder so many of us write our own bios, stories, and adventures. If I were to get worked up over bio entries my ire would reside more with how established characters, like Hordak, are handled than with how a new character is introduced to the MOTUCverse.

      3. His dealings with the fan community over the years have been very patronizing and dismissive. So ready on the defensive and eager to regurgitate the company line that he would misunderstand, misrepresent, or altogether ignore legitimate, reasonable concerns. There has been some improvement recently, but too little, too late for a lot of people.

        Then add to this the ham-fisted, self-serving way he has handled the bio writing and character naming, and you really get the sense he’s making MOTUC to please himself first and foremost, and really doesn’t much care for the feedback or opinions of anyone else.

        And as far as the 30th figure slots, Terry and the 4H were asked to submit designs, while Toyguru took his slot. He claims it’s because they couldn’t find anyone else to do it for free, which is clearly 100% boloney. It’s as simple as: he saw the chance to get yet another toy made in self-tribute (for the 3rd (!!!) time, or 4th if you count the Hot Wheels) and he grabbed it, with little concern for anything, least of all the integrity of MotU as a brand.

        Also, the big difference where Terry and the 4H’s contributions are concerned is that they are designers by profession.
        Toyguru is not, for obviously good reason.

        1. Look, if Scott is an egomaniac, it’s not that bad. We know he’s put in some seriously hard work on this line over the years and most importantly, was willing to put his face out there (literally in this case) to get this whole thing going. Respect is due! But with all due respect, Spector is still a clunker.

          And as a sidenote, I’m fairly certain Sallah is taking a llllooooonnnnngggg vacation from the MOTUC if he hasn’t all out left it altogether. Hot Toys is his new obsession. If you can drop him a word, make sure he knows that his absence is felt!

          1. love your screen name.

            the “they wouldn’t do it for free” thing rings pretty hollow to me, especially in light of the guys they conspicuously didn’t ask… some of whom were quite vocal about not being asked.

            last thing i will say, on the topic of spector being an NA character, look at that design. it’s much more passable as a comrade from primus than from eternia. the tech armor attachment, the pistol, the color scheme even. that’s still not to say he’s a perfect fit there, but certainly, he shares more aesthetically w/ that universe that the one seen on eternia.

        2. Lazy, so hearsay is you entire argument? That’s the best you can offer? I’ll stick with my observations using TG’s posts, interviews, director’s commentary blog, etc….

          As for his “patronizing and dismissive” posts amongst the fan community, some are a bit snarky sure. I don’t think any of them are worth the amount fuss folks make over them, and I doubt any of them crossed the line regarding Mattel’s code of conduct.

          1. I was just trying to summarize. I’m not going to retread every little thing from the past 3 years.

            I’ve had access to the exact same information as everyone else, and if you think Toyguru prioritizes fan concerns over his own (or his bosses’) then you’re more than welcome to arrive at that conclusion.

            P.S. Beyond the bios, those “Director’s Commentary” blogs are a great deal of ‘fan fiction’ in their own right. Don’t take too much of that as gospel.

  14. Your dio adventure makes my point exactly. If Spector had been made back in 1982, EVERYONE would have gone nuts over the guy. “He wears a MASK! He looks like a SUPERHERO! WOW!!! How AWESOME is THAT??? Have you READ his mini-comic? WILL he be in the cartoon? I GOTTA HAVE HIM!!!!!”

    I mean, Spector would have been the Masters equivalent of G.I. Joe’s Snake-Eyes, who also wore a mask and hid a mysterious past.

    Take Spector for WHOM HE COULD HAVE BEEN back then, if you don’t like why he was created instead, today.

    1. The problem with this argument is that it could be used to defend literally ANY design, or anyTHING, really.

      “You don’t like my shirt? Well, it’s not the shirt’s fault. If your dad wore a shirt like this when you were a kid, you’d love my shirt now.”

      1. Robots with hearts. Dinosaurs with guns on. Aliens with excessive body hair. Barbarians IN FREAKING ROCKET-PLANES. The old MOTU was any design and any thing mashed all together.

        Okay, we get it: You don’t like Spector. Some people do. Can’t we all just get along?

        1. Don’t let Lay Ze bother ya, he’s not trolling. He’s just adamant in his beliefs. He and I agree about protecting the sanctity of some fiction, it’s just in this case, I don’t think the MOTU toyline has any sanctity to protect. 😀

          1. Dang, and all this time I was TRYING to troll! :D:D:D

            I don’t really believe there’s sanctity in any MotU toyline thus far.

            But I do believe in striving for an ideal, and I think that MotU has way more potential than almost anyone ever involved in the brand (4H aside) or almost any fan has taken the time to notice.

            I don’t believe in letting things be defined for you; I believe in seeing potential beneath the surface.

            So yeah, it does pain me that as soon as MotU seems to be finding a deeper, more universal place, someone shows up to drag it back into Goofsville, Cheesistan.

            MotU is no more or less silly than ANY fictional fantasyverse, and given the way too many MotU fans seem to view that world, we’ll be stuck in “Adam West Batman” zone forever.

            It’s the difference between incessantly making a homoerotic or short shorts Robin joke, or just going with it and dissecting what works about that costume design that people still like seeing it decades later.

            Now, that’s not to say I think “Chris Nolan MotU” would be an ideal version of MotU by any stretch, but to have such potential to be an awesome modern mythology and see it pissed away at every turn at the whims of people’s childhood-clinging-selfishness is a huge shame.

            How that’s relevant here is that I think Spector (and the story behind his existence) is an embodiment of almost everything wrong with people’s view of MotU.

            “Taking things too seriously…” I can see it now . . . but look, the minute you sign up for a screen name on a toy board or log onto Matty Collector, we’re ALL already “taking things too seriously” in the grand scheme of things. 😉

            I’m just more interested in longevity, and how we can let generations see the same ingeniousness and feel the same sheer magic that exists not within one single toy or one single design, but in the (admittedly incredibly) intangible soul that is MotU. I know you guys know what I’m talking about, or you probably wouldn’t be here.

            MotU should climb mountains, instead of being stuck in a sandbox getting its twist-waist-punch feature all jammed up. 🙂

            1. The problem, Lay-Ze, is in your use of the word “ideal.” It has no place in international business, where there are always back-room deals that will piss people off and money is always the bottom line.

              And there’s nothing any of us can do about it, until we organise to track down the berks responsible, kill them, and eat them. Starting with the bankers who fiddle the exchange and interest rates for each other and screw over everyone else (as in, us). Then give themselves 7-figure bonuses and wonder why everyone hates them. Well, that’s a pleasant thought, but unrealistic.

  15. I can respect everyone’s tastes. It’s what I love about MOTU (and other franchises) – character concepts can be based on just about anything.

    I have no problem with Spector being made available. I didn’t buy him (the 30th sub didn’t grab me) so it’s an easy pass for me. Along with Sir Laser-Lot (although for some reason, if he looked like the cardback with the furry loin cloth and boots, I’d be more tempted to grab him), Fearless Photog, Gygor, Chief Carnivous, Count Marzo (although I grabbed the re-issue recently after previously selling the original I had… for some reason I wanted him but still find him kinda “meh”), there’s plenty of figures characters don’t want. But others do.

    Then there’s some that just grow on me. Vikor I passed on originally, but grew to really want him and now he’s probably in my top 3 or 4 favourites. I hated Vykron when first shown, but really keen on the tank armour now (will use on the Snake MAA buck and transfer that snake head to make another unique palace guard). I’m sure there will be more. I didn’t want any NA figures initially but Flipshot/Icarius won me over. A friend got me Optikk on the cheap and I’m excited about getting more characters (even scored the complete series on DVD off eBay pretty cheap, although only watched one episode so far :P).

    One thing I will say… the ability to make the line somewhat modular is very appealing. Just little things I can do… Fisto’s 200X belt on Demo-Man (who in turn, looks way better without his shirt), using the spare Megator zombified head as a severed giant head that Vikor can hold by the hair, making a unique palace guard squadron with MAA, Fisto, Bow and Flipshot’s extra heads. I’m probably off on a tangent, which often happens when I reply to these things. 😛 But yeah, Spector has his place for those who want him. For me, though. Easy pass.

    Oh, and the pics are awesome for this review. Just missing a “until next time” in the last one! 😉

  16. Wow.

    Not only did I love the comic, get wrapped up in the story and think the panel with Snout Spout was a perfect ending…

    I nearly lost my mind at the He-Man “lesson” panel.

    Love it!

    I also love the Mighty Spector figure. Can’t put him down.

  17. Wow just wow noisy..those pics are crazy good man! I really love the psa he-man at the end…great review!
    If someone already asked this i’m sorry (lot of long comments) but what is the “time portal” from?
    Spector as a figure is great..I still dont care for the “ace of spades” motif but that kind of thing just isnt my bag anyway…I actually like his look more than sir lazer lot. My main question about the 30th line is where are all the girls?

  18. For my 2-cents, I’m all about the classics in MOTUC. I’m a nostalgia based collector and that’s why I dig it. Coulda, shoulda, woulda doesn’t count with me in that respect. In some other reality he did come out in 1982 and I love him but that’s not the case today. I’m not sold on the whole 30th concept beyond Bitner’s creation, yes it’s a celebration of the last 30-years and some modern key players should be involved in that but there’s not enough classic or vintage to interest me (Vykron would be a better fit than Spector IMO). With that said, let everyone get their love and accolades now, he didn’t come with the sub so he was totally optional with me as it should be, and let it stop after the 30th. Spector would be perfect for a future line or future media property that would be the start of a new canon, but I feel he has no place existing beyond this sub line.

    As for the character the time travel aspect seems redundant. Anytime they needed to go through time or travel to other dimensions the Sorceress was there to oblige. Now if Spector had the power to slightly rewind time Prince of Persia style, that might be cool. Maybe some tweaking to the concept and look would have been in order or just hand the whole thing over to the 4H so they could have reworked it some more than just a tacked on Gwildor accessory (hey another character that has the time-travel angle already tackled!)

  19. ey Noisy, how’d you pull off that shot of 1986 Toys R Us?

    Also….why are Star Wars in that shot?

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