Saturday, August 24, 2019

Action Figure Review: Battle Armor She-Ra & Swift Wind from She-Ra and the Princesses of Power by Mattel

    Oh my gosh! I'm reviewing an honest to goodness new Masters of the Universe toy from Mattel! Yeah, it's from the She-Ra and the Princesses of Power line based on the Netflix series, but still: It's a Mattel branded MOTU toy! It's kind of been awhile since that has happened (with the exception of Mega Construx) but it seems like it's going to be a thing going forward as Mattel seems to once again be banking on He-Man and She-Ra as having powerful potential at retail, on Netflix, and at the move theaters. The most exciting thing about the She-Ra and the Princesses of Power line to me isn't the having the toys for myself, however: It's that I was able to give this entire line to my daughter for her birthday! My daughter is a huge MOTU fan and, as a 6 year old girl, this line is right up her alley. Her middle name is Adora and while I bought her a few MOTUC figures even before she was born, these are the first MOTU toys that are for her first and foremost. Of course, yeah, I bought a set of most of them too, so these are mine to review.  I just had to hold off on getting mine out to review until after the little one's birthday. First up I'm reviewing the largest set from the new dolls which is the Battle Armor She-Ra and Swift Wind two pack. Let's check this one out after the break...



 The Facts: Battle Armor She-Ra

Height: 11 7/8ths inches

Articulation: Swivel/hinge knees, balljointed hips, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel/hinge elbows, swivel/ hinge wrists, and a balljointed head.

Accessories: Skirt, boots, chest armor, tiara, and the Sword of Protection.



 The Facts: Swift Wind

Height: 10 1/4ths inches

Articulation: None

Accessories: 2 wings (non-removable once attached)

Non-Scalper Price: $30 dollars
 The Positives:

* Kind of like the vintage She-Ra: Princess of Power line, this new line seems to be a combination of the TV series designs and a more traditional doll aesthetic. While this new series definitely adheres more to the look of the Netflix series than the vintage toys looked like the Filmation series, they still have more of a doll-like aesthetic that tweaks some of the designs. The Battle Armor version of She-Ra did appear in the first season of the show and while it's not captured perfectly here, it does look OK. Maybe a bit plain, but the multiple extra elements (boots, shimmery skirt, removable chest armor, and tiara) definitely make the doll more fun. I've noticed my daughter likes the removable elements as you can kind of customize She-Ra's look.
 * I like the headsculpt on these. While the design is definitely based on the Netflix show, She-Ra's features have definitely been changed a bit, really softening up her look. She-Ra has real rooted hair, too, and it looks pretty nice. My daughter has complimented it, stating that it is very easy to brush. Again, some of the things that appeal to her about these differ from what I like about them. That's OK, though, as they're totally made for her. Unlike nearly any other MOTU product made since....who knows when, I'm not the target demographic!



* I do like the look of the battle armor and sparkly skirt She-Ra's sporting here. It nicely matches the look of the armor in the show and definitely feels like something from the vintage toyline.


* The articulation on these reminds me a lot of the articulation on the DC Super Hero Girls dolls from a couple of years back. There isn't a lot of articulation but there's definitely more than I'm aware of on most doll lines. She-Ra's got swivel/hinge shoulders, knees, elbows, and wrists as well as balljointed hips and a fully balljointed head. Overall she seems to have enough articulation for a kid to have fun with while still not having so much as to be frustrating to play with.

* I really like the Sword of Protection here. It's bigger and bulkier than the one in the show but it still looks quite nice. The blade is translucent and has a great design reminiscent of the design aesthetic of the First Ones tech from the show while the hilt is reminiscent of She-Ra's tiara. It's a cool, sturdy piece that just seems very fun.
 *
 She-Ra comes with her loyal steed, Swift Wind. Swift-Wind is never referred to as Spirit in the new show and doesn't transform back and forth. He's originally called Horsey until he is transformed by She-Ra's magic into an alicorn. While Swift Wind is a solid figure with no articulation (kind of like the vintage She-Ra steeds) he is definitely large, bright, and eye catching. My daughter is thrilled to finally have a Swift Wind of her own!


* Swfit-Wind's mane and tail are really nicely done. They're bright orange, just like in the show, and they're long and luxurious. You just know that this version of Swift Wind has gotta appreciate his glorious mane!

* She-Ra fits quite well on Swift-Wind. Swift-Wind has a flexible plastic clip on his back which allows the dolls to ride on him and stay attached quite securely. She-Ra looks great up there and she definitely stays on quite well. My daughter likes to fly them around the house, so I think Mattel did a good job with giving She-Ra the ability to stay attached to Swifty so well.
 * Swift Winds wings are actually made from fabric over a light plastic frame. At first this seemed like a somewhat silly way to handle this but it turns out to work really well. When you move Swift Wind, the wings actually "flap" up and down. It sounds kind of cheap but it actually works well and looks kind of cool. Again, considering that this is a toy aimed at younger kids, this is a fun feature that doesn't require pushing buttons or anything. Just "swooshing" Swifty around makes him seem as if he is actually flying!
 The Negatives:


* She-Ra's wrist pegs tend to swivel down when she is holding the Sword of Protection, meaning that sometimes attempts to pose She-Ra holding her blade aloft fail. I wish her wrists were a bit tighter.


* I have a little bit of a concern with She-Ra's elbows, too. The hinges on both my She-Ra and my daughter's seem a bit too tight. You need to be fairly careful moving the elbows or you could end up causing some damage to your figure.

* Overall I like the look of Swift Wind, but I do wish they had given him an open mouth. Talking is kind of Swift Wind's deal, so having an open mouth would have added a lot more character to the toy.



* Swift Wind has very little paintwork, really just his eyes, so there aren't any painted details such as his hooves. A little extra paintwork would have went a long way.
   Recognizing fully that these toys are aimed at young girls versus a crusty old MOTU fan like me, I still feel like giving an opinion on them. Overall, I'd give the set a Good and a 1/2. For $20 dollars you're getting a variant of She-Ra that kind of feels like a budget release compared to the other figures in the line and a pretty large though minimally painted Swift Wind. Still, there's a lot of play value for the money. While I would have liked to have had more paint applications and stronger sculpting, the fact that these are She-Ra toys at mass market retail (currently they're Target exclusives) is something to celebrate.




So far the only She-Ra/ Princess Adora figures I've reviewed on this site are the Masters of the Universe Classics Galactic Protector She-Ra, the Club Grayskull She-Ra, and the She-Ra from the Super7 Battle for Etheria 2-Pack.

This isn't the first Swift Wind I've owned but it is the first I've reviewed on the site.

3 comments:

  1. This is a pretty awesome review on Battle Armor She-Ra and Swift Wind. Thanks for that. I'm all caught up on the new "She-Ra" show, by the way.

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