Friday, October 20, 2023

The ABCs of 31 Days of Toy Terror: S is for Skeletor (Savage Eternia) from He-Man and the Masters of the Universe by Mattel

   Well... it's about time that Skeletor showed up for this year's 31 Days of Toy Terror! Remember the year that the theme for 31 Days of Toy Terror was Skeletober? That was crazy! This year Skeletor isn't showing up nearly that much, but he has to make his presence known for the letter S, doesn't he? Today I'm checking out the Savage Eternia Skeletor from the Netflix inspired He-Man and the Masters of the Universe toyline. The toyline really fizzled out this year as the show has ended, leaving some of the latter figures, like Moss Man, to be incredibly rare. Having my Moss Man preorders cancelled drives me nuts! That's some toy terror, right there (he's my favorite character, after all). Skeletor isn't as common a you'd, but he's not fetching the crazy prices of Moss Man. the Savage Eternia moniker showed up on both new versions of He-Man and Skeletor as well as on Hordak, Mer-Man, and Moss Man. My assumption is that this was Mattel's attempt to refresh the line until another season was greenlighted and completed or to just keep things going if it proved to be a success, but these have mostly just been showing up at select e-tailers and at places like Ollie's. We definitely have had multiple Skeletors in the line previously, but this one looks way cooler. Is he a better figure? Let's find out after the break...

The Facts:

Height: 5 1/2 inches

Articulation: Ankle swivels, swivel knees, balljointed hips, swivel waist, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel right wrists, and a swivel left forearm. 

Accessories: Havoc staff and Battle Bones.

Non-Scalper Price: $13 dollars

The Positives:

* While he's based on the Netflix CG animated series He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, this version of Skeletor is a different take on the show's Skeletor. He's more armored up with more jagged its and pieces of clothing and such. it's a cool looking figure and while there's a minimal amount of paintwork, the design itself is pretty neat. I like the heavy metal feel of the boots, pauldrons, and the chest piece. While the chest piece looks like the top of a creature's head with the upper teeth, the belt has a hooked belt buckle that looks like the lower jaws. Pretty crazy design!

* In the show Prince Keldor begins his transformation into Skeletor by having the flesh burned from his left hand as a curse for choosing havoc over justice and light (represented by his choosing the Havoc staff over the Sword of Grayskull). Once he's fully become Skeletor he still has a very visibly skeletal left hand and it looks really cool on the toy. It's really bright and looks more skeletal on this figure, whereas the previous Skeletor figures from the line had a more robotic cursed hand. 

* For the Savage Eternia line Mattel removed the "Power Attack" mid-torso balljoint, but added swivel/hinge shoulders and a swivel waist. The result isn't bad. These are very durable toys and it's clear that's exactly what these are: Toys. These are something you'd lump in with Playmates TMNT Mutant Mayhem figures or the Marvel Toy Box stuff rather than a collector line. They're fun enough to mess around with and have more articulation than the vintage toys, so there's that.

* The Havoc Staff is the same accessory we've seen with most of the other Skeletor figures in this line, though the brighter purple sure stands out more. I love that shade of purple!

* The Savage Eternia figures each come with a little companion figure and Skeletor includes a miniature Battle Bones. It's a cool little fellow with orange eyes and a metallic black body. He's solid, though he's completely unarticulated slug figure. Still, pretty neat.

* Like with the previous Netflix He-Man and the MOTU Skeletor figures, I really like the portrait here. The eyes are cool, the armored hood is neat, and I really like how the skull actually sets under the hood. While they did paint the empty space on the sides of Skeletor's cheeks this time, though....

The Negatives:

* There is still no paintwork on the nose or teeth which, with a head molded in this shade of yellow, just washes out all of the detail. That's a bummer!

* Since this is the same mold of the Havoc Staff that we've seen in this line since 2021, the back isn't sculpted the entire way around! I really hate stuff like this as it just comes across like cutting corners. This line was always meant to be affordable, but it's a shame when things like this happen. It just feels lazy.

    Despite how cool Skeletor looked in this show (yes, I really did like him), the figures from the basic line haven't managed to capture the aesthetic of the show all that well. This Savage Eternia take on Skeletor isn't a bad figure, especially for something truly marketed as a children's toy, but he's not crazy exciting, either. I do prefer the increased articulation on the Savage Eternia figures and I like the little Battle Bones. The lack of paint is still a major bummer, though, especially on Skeletor's headsculpt. He's pretty average, which warrants him a Good. Decent toy but nothing that will make your average, non MOTU obsessed collector jump for joy.

 I've reviewed so many toys of Keldor/ Skeletor that he has his own review archive. Check out Snake Mountain for all of my reviews of the Evil Lord of Destruction!


  1. What I really love about this version of Skeletor is that he reminds me of the New Adventured 2nd incarnation of Disks of Doom/Battle Blade!

    1. I see it, particularly on the chest armor. I still hope that Masterverse will fill in the remaining New Adventures figures never made in MOTUC. I wish they'd gotten to all of them back then.

  2. One of the neatest Skeletor designs I think.

    1. It's definitely a unique take. I wish Mattel had put a little bit more effort into this line as it might have done a bit better. I like how it's unique and presents it's own MOTU vision.


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