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Spirit of Hordak Appears;
Spell of Separation engulfs Internet

After 20 straight hours in a car, I proceeded directly to work and apparently missed all sorts of hullaballo as Mattycollector unleashed their latest figure on an unsuspecting populace. Yes, it’s a random day in May and your MOTUC collection is one less figure from being complete!

I’m not exactly sure what happened today, going straight from a long car ride to work an 8-hour shift messes with your mind, but at some point this afternoon Mattycollector dropped a surprise figure on their site, Spirit of Hordak. If you were lucky enough to be in front of a computer this afteroon you were treated to a special link and this message:

Congratulations! By magic or by luck, you’ve found a secret figure! Now you see him… but this master of manipulation can disappear at any moment so act quickly!

This all-clear figure features painted red eyes, chest emblem and removable armband, and comes with a fan-demanded Hordak® cross bow in vintage white. Trust us, this visitor from the dark dimension is up to no good… but you’ll have to get the figure to see his complete bio. Straight from the 2013 mini-comic, “The Secret Origin of Skeletor,” this highly collectable figure is not available with Club Eternia® subscriptions or even during regular monthly sales, so make sure you check back often to try to catch him the next time he decides to project onto this page!

Please Note: This item is on its way to our warehouse! The expected availability is 5/10/13; items ordered at the same time will be held until this one arrives.

While we’re in the interim waiting for Hordak to “reappear” this message has since been replaced with the simple tease “You’re too late. Hordak is back in hiding.” If you search for Hordak at Mattycollector, the Spirit will come up in the general search and shows that he is currently listed as sold out though the tease would indicate we can expect to see him again… sometime. I’ll probably be at work.

As one would expect, the internet promptly broke in half after the news spread. Honestly, this is one of those times where even the angriest among us probably needs to take a step back and realize they’re way too upset about this – even if it isn’t the brightest thing Mattel has ever done. I mean, it’s one thing to unleash a string of curse words at some guy who just cut you off on the road when you’re in the car by yourself and he’s making you ten seconds later to work, but it’s entirely different to spew all that out in a public forum, right? Road Rage is one thing, but Nerd Rage? Right? Yeah, I know.

Here’s the thing. While I do feel that same sting of wanting to buy something and being unable to for no particular reason, I don’t think there’s a call for nerd rage just yet. This isn’t the Spirt of Grayskull where a handful were run in different colors as part of a larger batch. There is no regular Hordak reissue, and as far as we know, no other version of Hordak currently coming. So, this is presumably a full-fledged figure release and logistics dictate they had to produce enough to make it profitable. Yes, big runs can sell out in minutes, but I don’t think this Hordak was that viral. Quick Sell-outs on MattyCollector are usually because of that site’s one sole advantage over it’s competitors, they release toys at a specific date & time, by appointment. And though, Mattel has willfully (& some may say foolishly) given up that advantage with this promotion, I still think there will be plenty of Spirit of Hordak’s in our future.

That said, I feel like we should all caution Mattel from going too crazy with these “surprise” figures. MOTU is a great, but unique, toy line. A large part of its current success, as Mattel themselves explain to us, is due to subscription sales. And, in turn, that subscription is sold on the basis of getting everything with ease. Now, long-time collectors know that Mattel has never embraced that concept as fully as we wish they would have, having us jump online to grab stands, vehicles, SDCC exclusives, etc. But, again, those were sold by appointment.

That all changed today. If it turns out that I’m wrong and Spirit of Hordak will somehow be a difficult to get, ultra-limited figure, then a lot of subscribers are going to miss out. And no matter how much you love MOTU, when you miss one (or more if Mattel embraces this “surprise” figure rollout), then subscribing becomes incredibly less important. When you’re missing figures you wanted, buying the ones you didn’t really want becomes questionable, buying them all becomes near impossible, and buying the subscription loses its luster.

But I think Mattel knows that. So right now I’m just going to be excited that Mattel got a figure to market that I didn’t know about. Those kind of surprises are few & far between anymore and it’s pretty cool. Yes, it would be even better if I had had the chance to lock one up, but hope springs eternal – even when it comes to a denizen of Despondos.

143 comments to Spirit of Hordak Appears;
Spell of Separation engulfs Internet

  • JediCreeper

    they’re playing with fire and they know it… they HAVE to know it. I would like one, I certainly won’t cry or curse if I can’t get one, but Mattel has to be careful, people were mad enough about strobo’s “sell out” and I know he’ll be plentiful at shows…

    I guess we’ll see how this plays out… I feel bad for Scott… he’s going to be dealing with a lot more mouth-foaming nerd rage than even he is used to

    • The Strobo thing was downright silly. He’s likely to be sold at a discount at the holidays, but y’know… NOW!!!!!

      I think this will be easy too, but I just want the noise to get loud and let Mattel know to not do this a whole lot.

    • I’d feel bad for Scott only if he and his employers didn’t bring this upon themselves. They’d have to be completely blind deaf and dumb to not realize the levels of nerd rage this would engender, even if, as Noisy theorizes, the figure becomes plentiful later on.

      • Scott has said Hordak will be offered in Early Access at some point, so there’s that. But yeah, still Scott made a few comments about this being “fun” and that’s just delusion. There’s nothing fun about missing out on something – which is where the vast majority of collectors are right now.

        • JediCreeper

          definitely not… the majority of people found out about it long after the fact, making it just a taunt to them

  • Expect this thread to run as long as SDCC Shazam’s.

    Mattel clearly enjoys screwing with people’s heads. And Scott Neitlich is making one heck of a living out of it.

    We’re goddamned adults buying kids’ toys for Christ’s sake. Cut us some slack and don’t insult our intelligence while we’re giving you our money.

    • Can we get another 100 comments?? lol

      I have a Truetorial on modern collecting, or at least our type of mass collecting. I really need to finish it.

  • the line is deeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaddddddddd!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! aaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • my issue is the surprise aspect if they had only let us know something was coming it would be different, its not that I couldn’t get him rather that I didn’t know. I think the anger is justified honeslty…this is only the latest in a long string of Terrible moves on Mattel’s part, and its like even if the figures are great they suck all the joy out of collecting them. I was inches away from just dropping the whole line today…I have since calmed down, but I’m still good and mad about this turn of events.

    • I have to agree on that. How much cooler would this have been if we’d gotten an email that said be at Matty in an hour, or even ten minutes! There’s always going to be butthurt, but a bone to subscribers would’ve been interesting.

  • also Big props to Hoard World who looking at the timeline really is the one who “broke” this story with may places sharing the pics he posted (with the AU timezone on them)

  • also Big props to Hoard World who looking at the timeline really is the one who “broke” this story with many places sharing the pics he posted (with the AU timezone on them)

  • I think the Nerd Rage is justified in this case.

    As a subscriber, one who signs up to front Mattel money, mostly in good faith, to provide me with products so I don’t have to go through all this stressful barnyard fertiliser every month, I feel entitled* to an easy collection with no annoyance. Apart from food and comedy, collecting is my last remaining pleasure in life. And Mattel just made it more needlessly stressful.

    * Yes! Entitled! I said it! And I’m taking it back for the subscribers! The trolls can’t ever hurt us with “The E Word” any more! Let’s all us subscribers greet each other with “How ya doing, Entitled?” and “Whassup, E-Dawg?” and similar jocular outbursts.

    • Right there with you Beedo..I have no problem with stuff that isn’t is in the sub (though I do wish there was an “all in” sub where you could get every single thing they put out including convention exclusives and bs like this) but when they don’t even tell anyone is where the problems begin.
      I don’t think this would ever happen with a new figure, but as a completionist missing a variant is a terrible thing, and they now expect us to just check the store all athe time? Also funny is there is a million question on the ask matty section and the ONLY one with a response is:
      this was a complete and welcome surprise, so my question is should we expect any future unannounced figures, or was this a one-shot deal?

      Tg’s Answer?
      If we told you it wouldn’t be a surprise now would it?
      that’s it! no explanation or anything like that. I won’t even get into the people thanking them for pulling this, or the people on .org who think because all their friends messaged them and they got one that other people are overeacting.

      • Well, y’know the fan-on-fan PR isn’t always the best, right?

        I would love a true all-in sub, but Mattel just can’t take our money do easily. :)

      • Yeah, Dr. R. I notice all the people who are happy with this fiasco or saying “calm down” are the ones who got theirs already, and/or have 10 on eBay, and/or didn’t want one in the first place.

        • Fans like that really piss me off. Somethign similar to this happened recently in the Power Rangers fan community (yup, proud lifelong PR fan). There’s a prop maker who was making solid metal Dragon and White Tiger coins to go along with the 20th anniversary MMPR Legacy Morpher, since Bandai only made the core 5. People knew about it beforehand, but the exact on-sale time was up in the air, until at midnight one day, they went on sale on eBay. The sale was said to be for one weekend only, but the Dragon coin ended up selling out in a few hours (this guy made over 400 of these coins by hand, and having them now, I can say they’re amazing).

          People who missed out were, understandably, disappointed. Many of them voiced their opinion, mostly in a “Too bad I missed out. This guy does great work, nad I would have liked to have gotten this” sort of way. A couple people were a little more vocal. But more than that, there were dozens of people on the PR forums basically screaming at all of the people who’d missed out the sit down and shut up.

          If the shoe had been on the other foot, if they’d missed out while other people got theirs, they’d be disappointed, too. And I wouldn’t suspect they’d have quite the restraint of the people who just wanted to voice that they wished they could have gotten one of the item in question, because it looked like it was awesome.

    • Shadow_Contact

      Beedo, You should feel entitled. I dont have a MOTUC subscription and even I feel Subbers should have had first crack, not those who just lucked up.

      • A heads up email about a secret fig would’ve been cool. I still would’ve missed, but I think it’d make this a better raw deal. :)

        • Has anybody dug thru the backlog of Twitter, Facebook and other ‘mayfly media’ to see if there was something blipverted?

          I’m sorry, even though I don’t have any real skin in this game I can’t help but think this was a completely insane idea. It’s, what, a ‘reward’ for not having a job or any responsibilities and able to just sit all day in front of a computer and hitting ‘refresh’?

          yeesh.

          • Technically, when the figures dropped I was sitting in the car on the way back from Florida and had my phone. If I’d been thinking about toys at all, I would’ve been able to order it on my phone without having to be a sitting at home all day. Technically.

      • Thank ‘e, Shadow. Although a subscriber, I felt similar outrage on behalf of the cherry-pickers who were denied a Fang Man.

    • I don’t think entitled is all that bad a word. I’m never a fan of over-the-top anger when it comes to toys, but I’m also not a fan of those that try to admonish fellow collectors in a self-richeous manner. No one ought to be spitting fire, but it is okay to complain now & again.

      • The way some people TYPE “entitled,” Noisy, you can FEEL the sneer as they do it.

        I mean, for Pete’s sake, no other business does this kind of thing. If your broadband supplier said: “Whoop! There was a 3-minute window today when you COULD have upgraded to unlimited downloads and extra speed for a small one-time payment, but you missed it, so tough! Keep checking back at inconvenient times and you may have the chance of catching this offer again!” you’d call the lawyers (and rightly so).

        Insane.

        • That does bug me. There were a few of the “Grow up!” posts in the Org thread that failed to come across as reasonable “Adult” responses.

  • [...] as a “chase” figure online — for discussion see posts at poeghostal.com and itsalltrue.net — but I don’t think “chase” is accurate. Why? Because a chase figure is [...]

  • Mikey

    I do love me a translucent figure. So it will be nice if these turn up in decent quantities.

  • I’ve been telling anybody who would listen for years now that my brother Hordak was a sneaky varmint. This just proves it.

  • Sunny

    People need to chill out a bit. Hordak will be back again. this is a fun thing for Mattel to do. Also this figure isn’t a must have – now if he had been the blue hordak from the cartonn then people would be rightly angry.

    • I don’t know that the “who” a figure is matters? To some a Spirit of Hordak’s might be cooler than a Filmation one and worth the gnashing of teeth.

  • J. Lee

    This is one fig I could really live without thanks to talks of The Goddess leg probs. That and the rarity of it wouldbturn into a non openner. I enjoy openning my figs so thats an out.

    The method stunned me is all.

  • He-Mullet

    I think that the “NERD RAGE!!!” Is truly Justified. Bear with me for a little bit:

    -It’s an unannounced item shoved on sale very close to the billing time for the most expensive month of the year (on Club Eternia based only on the items available in the sub. Do not Mention the Castle or any other subs cause that’s outside the Club Eternia sub).

    -It sets a precedent on Matty. Yesterday it was Kool-Aid man Hordak, but what’s stopping them from doing Loo-Kee, Rio Blast or any other character like this?

    -After all the “subs are the lifeblood of the line” campaign that Neitlich had through various posts on forums, and podcasts they pull of a “secret day of sale item”.

    A little heads up even if vague would have been most welcome. Something like:
    “Hey Toy fans! The Mighty Spector here! There seems to be some chrono-interference effecting the Matty Collector web site. Keep your eyes peeled for any anomalies on the site on May __th!” That way we know we HAVE to check the site and we could BUY the product.

    Seriously, some of the replies to this issue on various forums are facepalm worthy.
    “Have friends helping you, if you can’t get the figure.” Yeah, I DO THAT when the figures are announced. How can I contact a friend who collects to get me a figure that I did NOT KNOW was on sale… (cause it was unannounced).

    Yes, he’ll be back, but not everyone can be checking Matty 24/7.

    The idea is cute, the execution wasn’t that great… Hopefully this won’t bite them in the butt come 2014 sub time.

    BTW: Non-Kool-aid Hordak is available on Matty as an evergreen item.

    • A mysterious heads up email would’ve been great. I still would’ve missed out, but it’d be way cooler.

      Good point about cashing in on a $33 figure right before we’re buying the FFM though. Too funny.

    • -After all the “subs are the lifeblood of the line” campaign that Neitlich had through various posts on forums, and podcasts they pull of a “secret day of sale item”.

      EXACTLY THIS, Mullet, on top of everything else I’ve been saying. Was going to post it myself after work, since it occurred to me this afternoon, but ya beat me to it.

  • Jon

    I’m just really disapointed that the white crossbow comes with this Hordak, and it wasn’t part of a Filmation version :(

  • Bigbot

    I’m sure this would piss me off if I were a completest, but I have no need for Watermelon-flavored Hordak.

  • I don’t really frequent He-Man.org much these days, but it seems to me like most people are talking about raging nerds rather than actually being raging nerds. Aside from, I’m sure, a few people on He-Man.org, is anyone really that enraged by not being able to get what is essentially a Glyos-style clear variant of Hordak? Especially since it looks like he’ll be re-issued?

    This was a mildly interesting story, but even if I were still a diehard MOTUC collector this wouldn’t bother me much.

    • I saw enough fan-on-fan hate in the Org thread to not want to read all of it. :)

      I figure it’s not really a big deal in-it-of-itself, but I’d like to see this release format not continue. They’ve got me for a full sub, a half sub, and a car payment-sized Castle. There’s not much against here for me, but as a subscriber, I want no angst I guess? (Except for standard Digital River angst, of course).

    • Personally, Poe, I’m venom-spitting furious about this. I can’t tell how much money I’ve fronted Mattel to send me stuff stress-free, and a cool variant like this gets lobbed in unannounced and sells out before most people (like me, for example) get a chance at it.

      As has been said, this sets a dangerous precedent for aggravation and frustration, and if the subscribers and/or completists — who have been touted as “the lifeblood that keeps this line alive” — don’t kick up enough fuss, they’re going to keep doing this. Maybe one day they’ll decide to do it with a Tuvar / Bhaddra 2-pack,* or some similarly very cool item, and then you’ll see stuff hit the fan. I feel if we’re not vocal about this NOW, Mattel/Scott will get it into their heads that we all love this kind of annoyance.

      * Crapcrapcrap, I hope Scott doesn’t read this and run with it!

  • Lay Ze-Man

    I think Scott and Mattel would be better served creating buzz for this line the old-fashioned way.

    Y’know, by releasing quality products at a fair price in a method where everyone gets a fair shot of obtaining one.

  • Paul

    I don’t collect MOTU figures, so I can’t speak of the exact experience, but I’m feeling the same way as most people about the Mr Gold Lego minifigure that’s in the current series. I’ve faithfully collected all 10 series to date. That’s 160 minifigures. Mr Gold has a very limited production run of 500 worldwide. The chances of my finding one at retail is very slim. Virtually, my collection will be short by 1 figure. My Collector’s OCD is totally making that a hard pill to swallow.

    Over the weeks, my rage has subsided. I’m ok with not finding this super rare figure for the collection. What I’m actually angry about is that Lego handled this promotion entirely incorrectly. Fans of the toyline will not be the ones finding the minifigure. Price Gougers are the ones finding them. People are going into back rooms and searching through cases before they’re put on the floor. Others are buying multiple cases and just returning the ones that don’t contain this special figure. When they finally do get one, they throw it up on ebay and get hundreds (in one case $1200) for one. I’ve already spoken diatribes about ways this promotion could have been more successful, but this isn’t really the forum for it. I just want to say that I feel the rage even though I’m not a MOTU collector. I can promise that most of the people lucky enough to fine the Spirit of Hordak figure will instantly put it on ebay to try and scoop up as much money as possible. Most of the true fans didn’t get one, and that’s really too bad. Handling the promotion a bit better could have resulted in a much more well-received figure.

    • Paul

      Speaking of Minifigures, are we ever going to get some more reviews? Those things were hilarious!

    • Mr. Gold pretty much sums it up. Such a terrible thing to do to collectors. I’ve got a Truetorial about that that I need to finish…

      • Paul

        I’d love to read it. Make sure you let us know about it. I’ll be sure to leave my two cents.

        • If I ever do it – complaining about complaining is tricky business – it’ll be up on the front page. Maybe another 100 commenter for sure. :D

    • dean

      Mr. Gold, is to me, a representation of all that is wrong with this hobby, culminating in collectors eating their own, via scalping on eBay. We should stick together, and help one another out. Unfortunately, we can be a fickle-selfish lot when it comes to feeding our collection’s coffers.

  • dreadedsin504

    It was a great marking plan. Come on, once the news broke you know the site got flooded. It will be back up with the next two weeks I’m sure. Matty can’t afford to not let the bread and butter of their business not get another shot at getting him. It’s close to San Diego Comic Con and things like this keeps MOTUC line hot and relevant. We’ll get him real soon. Scott is a smart guy, I don’t think he would screw us. They had a plan and it worked, WE ARE ALL TALKING ABOUT IT.

    • I don’t know that annoying your fan base to get them talking is all that great, but I do agree with you that larger quantities await us and all will turn out okay.

    • Master Ba-Tor

      How is it a great marketing plan? What’s the point of driving traffic to a site with hardly any product available for sale? Mattel even re-opened subscriptions to further reduce the amount of day of sale product. Their marketing makes absolutely zero sense. All their clever marketing achieved was to alienate their subscription base.

  • Andy

    My issues have been mentioned above: a heads up e-mail to subscribers and relegating this to less expensive months. My one question is with a company so protective an corporate like Mattel, don’t you think they would’ve disabled comments on their F-book page by now?
    https://www.facebook.com/MattyCollector

    • Seems to me that poster has a completely valid point. I’d suggest people start doing screen grabs and archiving it lest it mysteriously vanishes. Of course if it DOES vanish that makes Mattel look even worse.

      In case it is erased, basically the poster points out the wording of the last solicitation for Club Eternia and how signing up was a guarantee, a GUARANTEE of ‘first dibs’ on ALL releases. No exceptions.

      Despite the actions of some in our political class, words DO have meaning, and legal ramifications. Mattel may really have stepped in it this time.

      • dayraven

        and people wonder why i won’t sub for the figs, and cancelled my castle order… i just refuse to offer these brain-dead oligarchs the passport to my bank account that they do dearly prize. he should change his handle to toy smeagol.

        i hope the fandom choke on cherry nyquil hordak, it’s a variant that really does nothing for me as a toy, and as a bit of business, thoroughly disinterests me in giving mattel my money.

        on the plus side, it’s dick moves like this that enable guys like onell, manormonster? studios, SMC and rampageo industries to have a lucrative business. fans are tired of dealing w/ the BS shenanigans of the bigs to get their toys. so we find ourselves in the unique position of making toys for each other on a smaller basis.

      • The only problem is that going legal is hard to take seriously. It’s the province of hyperbole on the internet.

        • dayraven

          that is true, till it’s not. i’m sure more than one manufacturer or service provider was chuckling evily to themselves at the futility of a threatened lawsuit right up until they got the certified letter about a class action suit. i’m not saying it’s going to happen now (although looking at the wording on the sale page for those subs, it’s crystal clear that a breach of contract has taken place), but it certainly could.

          though again i say, i think the best revenge, rather a lawsuit, is supporting a small producer who isn’t mattel with my money.

          • Lay Ze-Man

            Yeah, lawsuit or not, every time Mattel pulls one of these stunts, they lose customers.

            Might not be walk-outs in droves, but over the course of a few years, it makes for the exact situation MOTUC is currently facing where quality is dipping and prices are soaring due to the steady decline of buyers.

          • DR, that’s completely true and what kept me from several quick-service restaurants for years at a time (McDonalds over a f**ked up Quarter Pounder order, part of the ‘great cheese-on-everything’ conspiracy, and Wendys when the locals shifted from Coke to Pepsi. I take my body-destroying food seriously! :) ) but there’s a kind of problem, and it’s the key dilemma for all. If I’m mad at Wendys there are any number of places that serve a tasty burger (Denny’s is REALLY GOOD, they changed it up and… sorry. onward), but if I want a Paul Kirk Manhunter or Warlord or Neil Adams-style Batman, My choice is pretty much Mattel.

            OK, sure, customs. Wait for DC Direct to crap out something. But overall, giving my money to any of the 7th Market or Indie toymakers doesn’t change Mattel. They don’t care. They SHOULD care, as difficult as ‘mainstream’ toy selling is today, you’d think they would be glad for a dedicated core who is willing to shell out $25 (plus shipping!) for a $15 MSRP Retail figure (which, really, is more worth about $8 but hey), but Mattel doesn’t care. They just don’t.

            And it’s all throughout the industry. I think the Iron Man 3 toys look like ass. Doesn’t matter. Walmart and Target called out for cheaper pricepoints and Hasbro answered. I hope kids are having fun with those because I’m not buying.

          • ero

            Except this isn’t local, organic kale or farm-fresh chicken eggs.

            I just can’t get behind the logic of toys as commodity. These are Masters figures. If you want Masters figures, you gotta deal with the Soup Nazi that is Matty.

            • ero

              And I see Steve H. already made this point. Props!

              • Word! :)

                It’s the enduring problem of ‘point source failure modes’. If I grit my teeth and hope things will get better, there’s zero incentive for Mattel to change, because “everything is SUPER GREAT” in their book. If I ‘quite teh lein’ Mattel won’t even notice because they can keep dumping scalper bait out there like chum for sharks and that, sadly, seems to the the market they most care about.

                I mean, let’s say there’s a revolt. An honest-to-gnu Sparticus style revolt. Pretend that suddenly 80% of the subs demanded refunds. I don’t mean 80% of the people, 80% of the subs. Some folks out of weeping shame hanging on to one, just because. 80% cancellation of the MOTU subs. And that sticks through the SDCC membership drive.

                Mattel, TG would spin it as ungrateful fans, and the line was about to be over anyway. So what, big deal, it was a resource hog anyway and tied up staff and materials and it never really quite met with the expectations based on Facebook comments and other internet voices. There would be no attempt to woo back those missing subs.

                Mattycollector would likely get shut down until another V.P. gets a burr up his butt about the internet and a new site is launched.

                Scott ‘Toy Guru’ would hit up Goeff Johns for a job at DC and be rebuffed.

                Mattel wouldn’t care. They’d keep making Hot Wheels and Barbie and that really neat Imaginext stuff and continue to try and figure out how to sell toys in an ever-shrinking retail environment. Hasbro would likely increase their market share somewhat.

                Impossible, you say? I dunno, I’ve seen this sort of thing happen before.

                • Whenever a company starts doing “fun and challenging” collecting tasks, I am reminded of Palisades toys. They produced some damn good stuff, but they had so freaking many exclusives scattered all over the freaking place in every single freaking line. And then they did fun things like making Series 2 of Army of Darkness as “Blind Box” purchases.

                  I’m not saying these shenanigans are the SOLE reason Palisades went out of business, but I’d be willing to bet it was a major contributing factor. Certainly why I stopped buying from them, anyway.

    • Lay Ze-Man

      Looks like that thread’s been killed. In other similar threads still up, Scott is now claiming Jolly Rancher Hordak WILL in fact be part of an Early Access sale in future.

      Back pedaling, damage control, or the plan all along, it really doesn’t matter at this point. I think more harm than good has already been done.

      He says he wanted to recreate the “thrill” of finding a rare variant in a toy store. Well first of all, how many of us who isn’t a scalper ever found rare variants on the pegs? Not that many I’d guess, so I’m not sure that’s a universal experience needing recreation. Also, the person looking for the “rare variant” already knew of its existence, which is why they are laughably speed-walking to the Walmart toy section at 6AM in the first place. Simply announcing the figure out of the blue would’ve been surprise enough, and though some fans would’ve still been irked, they would’ve been robbed of the legitimate complaint Mattel handed them on a silver platter.

      And the point anyway, is “rare variant” is an outmoded, dead dog of a sales/marketing gimmick, and it just shows how Mattel continues to be totally out of touch with the needs and desires of its customer base.

      • I saw a few posts of him talking about how he wanted to make something that was “fun”. It blows my mind that he didn’t ask himself how fun it is to find out hours later that you missed something – even if it will be offered later, even if you’re confident that you will eventually get it – it’s never fun to miss something. The select few probably had fun snagging, but that’s not the feeling the vast majority of us felt yesterday.

        The funny thing is if we look back just a few months to the gnashing of teeth over Strobo – something we KNOW is getting released several more times this year and is destined to be back on Mattycollector at the end of the year – then anyone should’ve been able to expect the swift, negative reaction this garnered from a lot of folks.

        • Nobody at Matty really seems to be very good at thinking things through before they just run with whatever they do.

        • Lay Ze-Man

          But Noisy, don’t you realize Ring Pop Hordak was part of the roadmap and planned over 9 million years ago, so he was already set in motion and impossible to change course on regardless of the Strobo feedback?

          Bottom line is Scott can claim it was “for fun” all he wants, but he and Mattel have consistently shown that they believe intentionally denying collectors product is the only way you create buzz and demand.

          I still remember their initial idea to make MOTUC Faker a random chase variant of He-Man. *shivers*

        • dean

          Yes. Exactly. Does no one ask, “How would I feel if someone did that to me,” anymore? Good phrase to remember for life in general, though I will probably forget in a post or two. :)

      • To be honest, I have found a few rare variants in my day as a toy collector, and it was pretty awesome. More common, however, is having to go the secondary market, or just living without that cool toy you wanted, and that’s a crappy feeling. Sort of the feeling that Matty actually ended up creating with this debacle.

        • Lay Ze-Man

          That’s what I’m saying. The universal experience regarding rare variants is the opposite of the one Scott claims they were aiming for.

          They’re just generally a pain in the balls, and the kind of thing this line was meant to avoid. In the original pitch it was all about “Remember how much that sucked driving around looking for the shortpacked 200x characters? Well worry no more!” So this Hordak move is in a lot of ways the very antithesis of what we all bought into when we decided to support this fledgling and risky venture known as MOTUC.

          That’s what has me on my last straw regarding Scott and the whole mess, is that he’ll say whatever it takes to paint a rosy picture when he’s got his hand out asking for our money. And once they have our cash, he does whatever he wants and says “Them’s the breaks, kid!”

          I’m over it.

  • Megaduce Flare

    Short of winning the lottery, my MOTUC collection is already impossible to complete.

    So, while I would like to get my hands on a translucent cherry-red Hordak, I’m not going to go out of my mind trying to get one.

  • Lemmy

    Kinda iffy on the fig, and not sure I’d even want one. What irks me is that, as part of the subscription, we were told we could expect early access to any no-subscription item sold on the matty.com website. Obviously, this is just not the case. Not really a big deal, but when combined with all the other issues I’ve had dealing with matty collector (shipping issues, quality control, customer service issues, missing/misshiped packages, etc), I’m left with a very sour taste in my mouth. I’m not trying to whine or complain here. This is just how I feel, as a customer. This feeling has been building up well before this sale of Spirit Hordak.

  • Andy

    http://forums.mattycollector.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/5681027317/m/4981012128
    Not in May, but he will be in Early Access at some point in the year. Although we can’t guarantee their will be enough for every sub holder for every sub. If you happen to be lucky enough to find him however, I wouldn’t suggest waiting or passing!

    Thank you. That’s all I wanted

    • Thanks for posting that. And, yes, exactly. I know I’d wait over a day to make that announcement myself. ;)

    • dean

      Working from back to front of this thread, I will say that is something, at least. I wish it filled me with more hope.

      When MOTUC started it was the most excited I had been about a toyline in a long while. Mattel has worked very hard since that blessed day to obliterate that peaceful, easy feeling.

      If fans tend to over-react (besides the very nature of being a fanatic), it is because it has been building for a good while. This hobby should be fun; a never-ending extension of our carefree, collective childhoods. We collectors should, kumbaya, support one another in this niche, yet joyful pastime. Matty instead works hard to turn us against each other in some psychotic “Lord of the Flies” free-for-all. The Spirit of Hordak is aptly named, for the not-so-great destroyer is intent on sewing discord among the masses. Hyperbole is fun.:)

      And just because I have not uttered it in a long time, here is a hearty, yet tongue-in-cheek “Muck Fattel!” for the win.

  • Jackstatic

    I didn’t get a clear hordak, do I want one? Yea but only because I am a “completist”. Am I upset I missed out on him? Sure, am I raging about it? No, I am sure I will get him eventually, eBay prices will surely drop with the amount of resale Hordaks already up, but what I am aggregated by is the fact that I don’t even actually want him outside of the reasons I already stated, I wouldn’t have demanded this figure ever, and if he showed up in the subscription I would be ticked because he is essentially worse than Snake Man at Arms. Nerd mentality I s’pose. Anyway, this reminds me of the hunting for clear variants that I used to do, boy, did I hate those days!

    • I’m pretty divorced from being upset about missing this initial burst of the figure. I think the only thing I want to voice is that I don’t want this to become the norm.

  • Tom

    I think this figure just pushed me one step closer to walking away from all of Mattel’s antics.

    I don’t collect MOTU. I’m a DCUC fan. Last year when they were offering the subs to both MOTU and CIE, they were in danger of not going forward. Pleads came from everywhere to support the lines to go forward. MOTU got video pleads from several people, while CIE was kind of shoved to the side. Luckily they both made it.

    And what has happened in that year? CIE gets a monthly figure and a SDCC mediocre nu52 figure, that could just as easily be sold at retail, in a shiny package.
    MOTU gets a Castle, several extra added on lines and now a surprise figure.

    How are people who subscribe to the DCUC figures supposed to be enticed to sign up again for another year?

    I just don’t know why I care anymore.

    • I tell you, it’s hard to care about Mattel’s DC line. Schwarz, Infantino, Morrison, Adams, Fox, Wein, Perez, etc. are the ones that did the heavy lifting years ago for that DC sub to limp along, because it’s certainly not anything Mattel is doing now.

    • Lay Ze-Man

      I hear the feeling that the DC sub has been redheaded stepchild compared to MOTUC, but that gets into a much larger and trickier discussion.

      For years and years DC fans have consistently, without any gaps, had slews of action figure options, from mass market retail product to specialty market figures, statues, etc via DC Direct and others. There have been movie versions, cartoon versions, iconic versions, story arc and artist specific versions, practically everything you can imagine. With DC, you’ve had nearly 100% of the at-all-recognizable characters immortalized in plastic within the last decade, most with multiple looks.

      On the other hand, MotU has had a horrible time maintaining any kind of toy or collectible presence over the years. So with MOTUC they were starting from the ground up with nothing but (mostly) iconic versions of the most popular characters. So it’s no surprise that once people realized how solid MOTUC were, simply as action figures, that they would be way more popular with the sub model than DCIE would be coming on the heels of 20 Waves or whatever the DCUC run was.

      Of course, that’s not to say it’s how it had to be. There were a million and one awesome (and wholly ignored) ideas generated by the fanbase debates when the DC sub looked like it was gonna be DOA, and any random 12 of those ideas would likely have even secured MY sub order. And I don’t sub for anything. C&C sized Doomsday, true comic colors Superman with a new head sculpt, a new, non-spindly female buck to refresh Wonder Woman, etc. Civilian figures like Gordon, Alfred, Bruce Wayne, Lex, Clark, Lois, etc. Introducing useful and lots of fun accessories. Introducing interchangeable heads and hands as the new standard. So many great, “must-have” ways they could’ve gone.

      But instead, they limped along and forced figures that only diehard comics fans would even recognize, or misfired completely requesting the non-demanded look and size of potentially demanded characters. Mattel’s total lack of vision and failure to understand the potential for a continued DCUC line sealed the deal on hardly any subscribers, therefore no tooling for anything worthwhile.

      Much as I hate the MOTUC subs, at least it shows Mattel a black and white, hard data quantity of how many guaranteed units they can move. That’s why MOTUC gets a bigass castle while DCUC couldn’t even muster a Batmobile. And no mistake, that is 100% a failing on MATTEL’s part and nothing to do with the fans. If Mattel had offered a DC sub anywhere half as compelling as the MOTUC one, it would’ve blown MOTUC sales out of the water twofold.

      Anyway, didn’t mean to totally derail this comments section. :D

      • TC

        Amen, brutha!

        • dayraven

          i submit, if DCIE had fired up it’s sub period by saying “in december, we’ll be delivering an in-scale batmobile,” the DCIE would have pulled numbers so severe as to make motuc/castle grayskull look like betamax.

          • dean

            Ding, ding, ding. Roddy, tell the man what he’s won.

          • Brainlock

            isn’t the current “perrenial” animated Batmobile large enough for DCU figures? those figures are just a half inch shorter and less articulated, so shoving a DCU in there shouldn’t be a problem, aside from the stiff plastic capes.

  • Tanglevine

    I don’t get his statement about the thrill of finding a rare variant. I hate variants. I hate working that hard to find a toy that should be mass produced. Tracking down a variant to complete a collection or worse, because its a figure of a character I really like has never been a fun part of this hobby for me. Quite the opposite actually. Maybe it’s just me, but I like easy to find, plentifully stocked figures and that is something that Mattel has had a problem with all the way back to its JLU line and carried over into its DCUC line.

    • It ain’t just you, Tanglevine. And I don’t just speak for myself, I know from reading loads of posts that there are a LOT of other people out there who agree with you.

  • Polo23

    The 1st sale I missed since 11-15-2009. Excellent looking figure, cool design of the SOH but f**#ing disappointed atMatty with this surprise BS! I’ll get him when he pops back up again on the site. Thanks for the bio also I’ve been waiting to read it.

  • Brack

    Fun would be tossing it in as a freebie for any order this month.

    “Thank you for being a fan!”

    And then adding it to the sales the next month for those that missed as a purchase.

    That would be fun and generate good will.

    • dayraven

      i read “thank you for being a fan” and a deviant version of the golden girls theme starting playing in my head… may have to work on that later

  • Black Arbor

    Huh, so that’s where all of Mosquitor’s leftover translucent plastic went! Way I see it, a lot of people aren’t so much mad that the didn’t know as they are mad that they couldn’t order it RIGHT NOW WHEN ITS FIRST AVAILABLE. Seems that even if Mattycollector put it back up for sale with free puppies and candy, people would be mad ’cause they couldn’t have it the first time. Plus, if Mattycollector gave out free puppies and candy, the puppies would be rabid and the candy would be laced with rat poison.

    • RocketPunch

      I’m mad because Mattel seems to think it’s fun having to check their site every hour of every day, in the vain hope that Hordak might show up. I bought a subscription to avoid this sort of hassle.

    • clark

      Most of the anger I’ve heard does not seem to carry any I NEED IT FIRST ire with it. I think it’s because people spend hundreds on crap from Mattel sight unseen, and now they want these same people, who supposedly keep the line going year to year, to jump through hoops for a cool variant that they may never get to own.

  • Andy

    So…close… to 100 comments…

  • TC

    I’m a DC collector/sub-holder, but I’m chiming in because I think this is a Mattel issue, not just a MOTU issue. I can only imagine how pissed I’d be if I missed a translucent Martian Manhunter or something.
    I don’t like sounding like a whiner, but it really is a Love/Hate relationship with Mattel. And that’s a monster THEY’VE created. I love the toys, love finding a figure I need at a store or convention, but everything else has been a huge pain in the @$$. From phantom waves that never showed up at retail (Metallo and JSA series) to running out of stock in five minutes on items they’ve been touting for a year in advance (Legion 12 pack), this line has been so incredibly aggravating at times that I’m at the point where I almost think it would be better if the line ended. And how is it I can walk into any toy dept. and still find rows of Hasbro Iron Man/Cap figs from a movie that’s 6 years old, while DC Classics has one, maybe two, pegs that are empty half the time? I’m sure the store doesn’t want empty pegs, so don’t tell me it’s their fault. And why not re-issue crucial figures like Wonder Woman and Black Manta if there’s a demand? Does Scott fly to China and break the molds or something? If someone is willing to pay $70 on Ebay, imagine how many people will give you $20 at retail. I have never had such a hard time giving my money to someone as I have with Matty.
    So, sorry for the rant, but when TG or whoever says this is just something they did to make collecting “fun”, what I’d like to ask is…”Why start now?”

    • Brainlock

      I think that was the idea behind the “All-stars” line, to get the “perennial” sellers out there to latecomers. esp when they started packing eight figures to a six figure wave. Too bad that totally bombed on them.

    • Rich

      You’re right! Wonder Woman is a good example of missed opportunity after missed opportunity. She never peg-warmed, she was in an early wave, and then she vanished.

      They gave themselves plenty of chances to re-release her, but the decisions were weird. Her single re-release in WGSH packaging came with wave 7, just 4 months after her original appearance in wave 4.

      In the 2-packs, they chose Batgirl and Supergirl as the female heroines, and passed over Diana. Batman and Superman got all kinds of love during this period.

      28 months after her “re-issue” Diana made an appearance in the Skittles lantern wave and was dismissed with the rest of the wave as terrible. It’s hard to count this as a Wonder Woman appearance.

      We were told that there wasn’t a lot of budget beyond repaints in the DCUC vs MOTUC two-packs, and then the She-Ra/Supergirl pack hit, with not even a repaint to entice completists. This would have been a perfect opportunity to release Wonder Woman as a repaint in Super Powers colours, but they missed here as well. The Supergirl they chose wasn’t current in the comics, and wore a forgettable Supergirl outfit. Even the JLU Supergirl had long outgrown the white shirt at this point. And then the MOTU/DC packs SKU died immediately after.

      The TRU ‘All-Star’ Repaints went with the big guns of the JLA (thought not superman?): GL! Batman! Flash! and… Nightwing? In a costume he wore in one comic? Another missed slot for a WW repaint.

      Despite being featured in art on the back of the All-Star case-filler figures, WW never appeared here either… but Power Girl did! And then warmed the pegs, because what Mom is honestly going to buy a Power Girl figure?

      Some late 2-packs trickled out, like Shazam and Black Adam, and Wonder Woman and the Cheetah repaint that we were promised would see wider release… got passed over in this format, too.

      Finally we have a nu52 Wonder Woman. Hands up if you’ve seen this wave at mass retail, please?

      This is such a bizarre way to run a popular license.

      My Wally West Flash had better have been worth the wait…

      • We live in very different parts of the country, my friend. DCUC WW was a perennial peg-warmer around me. I couldn’t fathom why they reissued her as a WGSH figure when there was still plenty of stock of her initial release sitting on the pegs and shelves right next to the re-release. I’m a huge fan of WW, and couldn’t fathom why she wasn’t selling, and it was kind of aggravating, because any toy exec could have snapped a picture of any local Target or Walmart and rehashed the old “female figures don’t sell” argument.

        Also, I’ve seen Nu52 WW plenty of times. All of the “Unlimited” figures have shown up around me in fairly decent numbers, though they do tend to sell quickly. As a huge WW fan, I’ve been tempted to pick her up more than once, but I’m just not feeling the Nu52 style (it doesn’t help that the book hasn’t been very good since the relaunch. You know a book is bad when it makes “Odyssey” look good).

        And finally, no, the Wally west figure won’t be worth it. I’m a huge Wally West fan. He’s my Flash. When people mention that name, Wally’s the one I think of. He’s also the only Flash a couple of generations of comic fans have known, and the flash for any fans brought in by the hugely successful JL/JLU cartoon. But that figure sucks. It looks like a caricature of Wally as Flash. I’ll keep my homemade Wally custom. It required almost no effort and looks 20 times better than what Mattel’s giving us.

      • Brainlock

        WW was plentiful around here, but she also hit at the same time as the Mattel-wide lead paint recall. I had picked up a couple extra for customs, but took them back as I was running short one week and bills took precedence, and they were returned to Mattel instead of put back on the shelf.

        Power Girl was part of the w10 Imperiex Walmart wave, so I thought it was a nice way to get her out to her fans without a WM, but she was already packed 2x case in w10 and many were already complaining she was clogging pegs when the All-Star packaging hit.

        Nightwing’s “Renegade” brown outfit was used for almost a year in his book and a simple redeco for TRU, unlike, say “Super” Red Hood which is coming in the sub, used for ONE four issue arc, versus the more well known and used for years pre- and post-nu52 JACKET look.

        All-Star also had Green Arrow, which I was glad to see, as I finally managed to snag one. I also saw the All-Star Superman once, but passed on him. Many were also glad to see the All-Star GL, as the w3 GLs were suffering from “white dust syndrome” or whatever it was people decided to call the white powder on that wave’s substandard plastic (which is why Mattel actually switched factories at the time!). I even managed to snag an All-Star Deathstroke, too, which the w3 version also had the white powder creep.

        as for the sub Wally, from what I’ve seen sneaking out of China, I’m better off keeping my TRU Cherry Barry in his place. #youhadonejob

        • Hal was released like 7 or 8 times across the course of the DCUC line. The regular version as in wave 3, and was both an All Star and a WGSH. There was also a Silver age Hal packed with an Abin Sur, grey hair Hal in the GL 5 pack, a modern Hal TRU exclusive, and a Modern Hal as an All-Star in the final wave. And that’s not counting Yellow Lantern Hal or anything like that.

  • dean

    Nice one, Matty. Try and force everyone to sub, and then show the completists that they cannot rely on your precious sub to complete their collections. Well played. ;)

    On a seemingly unrelated note, I see the yen conversion rate to the dollar is quite nice right now. Fighting Foe Men or some nifty imports? Hmmm. :)

    • Imports. The S.H. Figuarts line has some kickass figures in the pipeline in the coming months. Dragon Ranger and Tyranno Ranger from ZyuRanger (aka Green Ranger and Red Ranger from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers) and Kiba Ranger and Ryu Ranger from Dairanger (Kiba was MMPR White, Ryu Ranger was never used in America, but is still awesome looking) are all due out by the fall.

  • [...] been gone over quite a bit by a few of my favorite sites to read this week.  However I have been on a strict “don’t get frustrated by Masters [...]

  • Megaduce Flare

    So, I tried to get Dum-Dum Hordak through Early Access today, but had no luck.

    I had him in my cart as soon as he went live, flubbed a couple of the captchas, & by the time I got one that worked (about 2 minutes later), he was gone.

    I don’t know if he completely sold out or, at the risk of sounding like a tinfoil-hat conspiracy-theorist, whoever is running this taco stand pulled him after a few minutes, but I do know this: chase variants suck.

  • Andy

    Yep, another kick in the balls by Mattel today.

  • Wow, you actually got him in your cart?! Every time I clicked on “Add to cart,” I got “Your cart is currently empty.” Then I got an error message. Then he was back in hiding. Then sold out.

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRGGH!!!!

  • Bill

    I was lucky enough to get mine this morning. 8a PT = 10:15 Central?? This is why missed Strobo…

  • clark

    I just want to add my 2 cents. I am not a subscriber, I have cherry picked MOTUC the entire time, and probably have 30-40 figures. I love translucent figures so I would like to have one, but it’s not a big deal to me if I never get one.

    That said: I feel really bad for the subscribers. This is a complete slap in the face to you guys, who shell out hundreds of dollars to Mattel each year, for product sight unseen. You guys have to buy all the lame figures that 10 people are excited to get and everyone else dumps on ebay for 1/2 price. Then a pretty cool variant comes out and you aren’t even given a heads up? That is really crummy, considering how much pleading and begging came from Scott last year for subscribers to save the line. I agree with Beedo, that subscribers are entitled to the figures.

    I think there are several subscribers who have spouted pretty hateful things towards cherry-pickers like myself (I try to stay away from .org when I can), and that can leave a bad taste in my mouth; but I still recognize that you guys are the financiers of MOTUC. This year I thought Mattel (Scott Neitlich) understood that they really needed to take care of you guys. Obviously I was very mistaken.

    • Thank ‘e kindly, Clark. Wow. Subscribers and cherry-pickers, agreeing together . . . MASS HYSTERIA!!!

      While I am a subscriber, I also feel bad for the cherry-pickers. I’ve never hated the cherry-pickers, as some seem to do for no good reason, although I do admit to feeling a bit of schadenfreude when the cherry-pickers who kept calling us subscribers “blind sheep” and likening us to women of negotiable affection doing things to ToyGuru in back alleys for toys suddenly turned to howling anguish that they couldn’t get a Fang Man day-of-sale, but that was more personal than it was directed at an entire specific sub-group of the collecting community. That sentence kind of got away from me.

      Anywho, punishing cherry-pickers because they might not want all of the characters or possibly can’t spare that much cash every year is just downright smacking of 1980s-style elitism. Which I hated the first time around. Having only enough stock to last for five minutes day-of-sale is just rubbing salt AND lemon juice in the wound. Not even being allowed to have a chance at day-of-sale, that’s just downright childish petulance. “You weren’t my friend during the subscription drive, so you don’t get any. Nyaaah!” Which is why Spirit of Hordak was probably only available for one minute last Early Access: I’ll cave into pressure to obey the LETTER of the contract, but the SPIRIT of the act is a big “Up yours!”

      • clark

        Absolutely, I think this stupid release of Spirit of Hordak is just pissing on subscribers. I think it would be completely fair if Mattel said “every subscriber will have the opportunity to order one Spirit of Hordak figure with no hassle. We will open up the early access link and leave it open for 24 hours. Duplicate orders will be deleted. For the non-subscribers, and subscribers who want to purchase more than one, we’re going to have this stupid hide and seek game, but it’s fun!”

        • That’s a good idea Clark, so Mattel will ignore it.

          Howzabout . . . call me crazy . . . howzabout they have an offer, right . . . an offer whereby . . . stay with me on this . . . you can clip off the proofs-of-purchase from any five or six MOTUC figures, send a cheque to cover the postage to wherever it is you live . . . and you get a Spirit of Hordak figure! Offer valid until 31/12/13. All entries must be postmarked before this date. They will produce enough to fill all orders that are postmarked before the cut-off date.

          Or is that too old-fashioned and equitable?

          • What? WHAT?! Am I hearing right? Actually CUT a coupon chit off of the packages?! DESTROY the mint condition valuable product?! ARE YOU MAD?

            Next thing you know you’ll suggest Cherry Jolly Rancher Hordak be placed in a simple plastic bag and mailed in a plain white carton or something!

            No, sorry, you’ve gone completely crackers. No more Kenny Everett Video Show for you, mate. :)

        • Tom

          You are right Clark. If they wanted to keep the subscribers happy and coming back next year, they should be given the opportunity to buy 1 figure for their collection.

  • But, Steve, it would all be done in the best POSSIBLE taste . . . ! };D

    • Oh, best POSSIBLE taste?

      Well, that’s all right then, I suppose. I mean, not like it’s some poofy ranker or such. Carry on. :)