Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Wrapping Up 2021: Eternian Goddess from Masters of the Universe Origins by Mattel

 

   I received series 6 of Mattel's Masters of the Universe Origins for Christmas and I wanted to make sure I reviewed them before getting too far into the new year as series 6 has some pretty unique characters in it. One of the most unique is the Eternian Goddess, also known as just the Goddess, or the Green Goddess, or the Sorceress, or Teela as the deity of the Snakemen. Yeah, the Goddess is kind of all over the place. The original version of the character stems from the original vintage minicomic "He-Man and the Power Sword" in which the Goddess (referred to as "Sorceress") is rescued by He-Man. Recognizing him as a prophesized hero of sorts, she gives him the ancient treasures and weapons she has been guarding. She's completely separate from Teela though she looks like a green version of Teela wearing the armor she comes with. Over time the Goddess disappears, replaced by the Sorceress Teela-Na who was prominent in Filmation, and it's only been within the last 15 years or so that she's regained her own unique identity as Sharella, a guide and deity who protects the Power Sword and guides heroes before the time of He-Man. It seems that in the vintage toyline there were originally plans at one point for two figures, the warrior Teela and the magical Goddess/ Sorceress but being concerned about too many female figures in the line the figures were combined. Weird, huh? Anyways, the Goddess has become a popular character and since she both has roots in the earliest minicomics and she's an easy repaint of Teela Mattel included her here. Let's take a look at the Eternian Goddess after the break...




The Facts:

Height: 5 1/2th inches

Articulation: Swivel/ hinge ankles, boot swivels, swivel/hinge knees, ball jointed hips, swivel waist, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel/hinge elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, and a double ball jointed head.

Accessories: Staff, shield, armor, and minicomic

Non-Scalper Price: $16-$18 dollars

Comparison:



* The Eternian Goddess is on the left while Teela is on the right. The Goddess is pretty much a repaint of Teela though she does have the updated knee joints which are a big improvement. 

The Positives:



* The green on the Goddess looks fantastic. It's a very nice color that looks fantastic, both otherworldly yet pleasant to the eyes. Yeah, she's got the same outfit as Teela, but the colors are changed up nicely with cooler colors like blue, green, and silver for her outfit. She's meant to be displayed with the snake armor on so if you have your Teela without her armor and the Goddess with it, they ought to look quite different on the shelf.




* The headsculpt looks just fine in green. I honestly wouldn't have minded a change in hair color, though, but this is still pretty solid with clean paintwork. 


* I like the articulation used on the female MOTU Origins body. It's quite good, maybe even with smoother articulation than the male body. The Goddess moves just fine and the improved knees look much better than the previous design.



* All of the MOTUO figures are modular, allowing you to separate the limbs, torso, and head to make your own simple customs. Pretty fun stuff!




* Like with Teela, the Goddess' serpent armor is also molded from the more rubbery material Mattel is using on the Origins figures so it holds detail well and fits on the figure quite easily. Seriously, you can take this armor on and off again with little worry about it breaking or tearing. It's nice and sturdy and simple to put on.




* The Staff of Ka is very close to the vintage accessory that came with Teela though the shaft is a bit thicker so the wider Origins hands can grasp it more easily.



* The Eternian Goddess also comes with Teela's shield which is very similar to the vintage toy's shield. Rather than a clip on the back to fit on her wrist this shield has a simple handle for her to hold.





* Each figure in the series also comes with a mini comic. Yes, an actual minicomic. Each character comes with the same comic but it's a cool way to familiarize kids picking up these figures with the characters. 

  
   I really like this figure. I really liked the Masters of the Universe Classics Goddess figure (so far mine hasn't broken; knock on wood) and I'm glad to see the character again. This is a great way to refresh Teela while technically offering up a new character with roots back in the vintage minicomics and the creation of the line. She's a Great and a 1/2 figure and one of the best variants we've seen in the line to date. 



   For more of the Eternian Goddess, Sharella, check out my review of the Mega Construx Castle Grayskull as it came with an exclusive figure of the Goddess.


For more Masters of the Universe Origins reviews check out the following:






4 comments:

  1. I think the earliest intention was that the magic wielding female character would be an evil sorceress or villain but the minicomics and the blending of the characters together sort of eliminated that. My daughter and I are reading through the DC Comics series and I'm excited to see her reaction to the Goddess Teela in that series.

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  2. There's some indications that Mattel hadn't firmly nailed down the Heroic/Evil warrior division at that stage and some characters were meant to be ambiguous in their allegiances or could help/fight both the hero and villain. However it soon became clear that toy play for this sort of line requires clear rules about who's with who. This is why Zodac became a messy source of confusion for vintage era children and seems to have been one of the first figures dropped from the line (going by later year checklists).

    To an extent Evil-Lyn was a dusting off of part of the Goddess concept to serve the Evil Warriors.

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  3. Zodac was definitely all over the place early on. He was kind of thrown in after the Teela/ Goddess concept was combined into two figures. I think he was originally intended as a Heroic Warrior by Mark Taylor but was then marketed as a neutral Cosmic Enforcer. I think he was supposed to be a bounty hunter of sorts, probably taking influence from Star Wars.

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    Replies
    1. Exactly how Zodac was originally conceived seems to vary depending on which interviews and documents you go with and there's some stuff about a plan for him to switch sides in story. And of course material from Mattel that reached toy shelves in 1982 didn't actually say much at all - "Cosmic Enforcer" is an odd term (unless one somehow read the licensing kit), he wasn't in the original mini comics, the eight-back cards don't divide the characters up by factions and so forth. It seems to have been the DC comics who made him a Metron-style deity enforcing balance.

      From then on the pattern was generally that fiction put him in the role of powerful entity intervening to bring balance (usually by helping the Heroic Warriors) as seen in DC, Golden Books, Filmation, the UK annuals, colouring books and even the book that came with Point Dread and the Talon Fighter. However apart from that last one Mattel themselves tended to present the toy as an Evil Warrior, whether on the individual cardback, cross sells that started using the term "Evil Cosmic Warrior", TV adverts showing the whole line with Zodac amongst Skeletor's crew, posters that the same and so forth. (There is one Ladybird Book from about 1986 that uses him in this role, perhaps due to using Mattel material directly. Certainly a lot of the art in those Ladybirds comes more from the toys than Filmation.) Perhaps that's why he was one of the first figures to be dropped from the line.

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