Friday, June 14, 2024

Action Figure Review: Orko from Masters of the Universe by Mondo


Today's a pretty big review of a smaller character: It's Orko! This version of Orko is a 1/6th scale figure from Mondo's Masters of the Universe toyline and he was available as a timed exclusive back at the beginning of the year. Interestingly, he was a timed exclusive, so as many people as wanted him could buy him from Mondo's website between January 23rd and January 30th, and yet he's already shipped! He surely wasn't made to order, then, was he? Usually open, timed exclusives like this have a longer waiting period as the company uses the timed window to plan the size of their run. Orko shipped right on time, though, and I've had him for a week or so at this point. I really like Mondo's 1/6th scale MOTU figures but the prices have really gotten pretty high on these guys. He-Man and Skeletor were $160 when they first came out in 2019 and now the recent Teela figure, who didn't come with any little companion figures, was $250. Yikes! I've been pretty selective with my purchases over the past few years and the last one I picked up was She-Ra. I kind of regret skipping Teela, but I just couldn't get myself to pull the trigger at the time. Orko was an instant buy, though. I love the guy and I love how many little unique smaller figures you get with him. Besides Orko you also get a smaller "animated" Orko, Dree Elle, and Daimar the Demon. Interestingly, the three smaller figures feel like they could integrate into a Masters of the Universe Classics collection, so that's part of what sold me on Orko. Let's take a look at most everyone's favorite Trollan (I know Uncle Montork has some fans) after the break...

The Facts: Orko

Height: 7 inches

Articulation: Swivel/ hinge shoulders, bicep swivels, double hinged elbows, double swivel hinged wrists, and a barbell neck.

Accessories: 3 swappable portraits, 12 swappable hands, wand, 2 spellcasting hands, stuffed buddy, and 3-piece display stand.
The Facts: Orko

Height: 3 inches

Articulation: Swivel shoulders.

Accessories: 3-piece display stand.

The Facts: Dree Elle

Height: 3 1/2 inches

Articulation: Swivel shoulders.

Accessories: 3-piece display stand.
The Facts: Daimar

Height: 3 1/2 inches

Articulation: None

Accessories: None

Non-Scalper Price: $235 dollars

The Positives:

* Orko is smaller than the previous Mondo figures but that's to be expected; he's a smaller character. Since Orko floats everywhere he goes Mondo made sure to include a stand for him. Orko has been redesigned just a bit to make him fit in with the aesthetic of this line, though he's still instantly recognizable. to me he looks a lot like the Mike Young Productions/ 200x Orko due to his more detailed robes with gold trim and the "O" on his outfit being  medallion or crest of some kind. His actual robes and sleeves are soft goods while his body, scarf, and the overlay on his torso which might be a vest of some sort, are plastic. There are lots of unique details here and he captures the best parts of a few different versions of the character. I see equal parts from the Filmation design, the 200x design, and the Sideshow 1/5th scale statue

* Orko's hat is part of his signature look and designer and MOTU marvel Emiliano Santalucia and sculptor May Thamatarana did a great job with it. I love how it covers Orko's head on the sides, further obscuring his face. Mondo lists the creative team as: Concept Design by Emiliano Santalucia. Sculpt by May Thamtarana. Paint by Mark Bristow. Art Direction by Hector Arce. Packaging Art by Florian Bertmer. Packaging Design by Jordan Christianson. Photography by Raúl Barrero.

* Closer up con see Orko's bright eyes shining out from under the brim of his hat, leaving the rest of his face obscured in shadow. And covered by his purple scarf, of course. The scarf has a really nice texture, giving it the appearance of actual fabric. 

* The sculpt and the paintwork really work in tandem to create the effect that this is a big floppy leather hat. It's something you'd imagine a Tolkienesque wizard wearing. Of course, Orko's always adorable ears are peeking out, giving us another peak at the mysterious blue wizard. 

* The back of Orko's scarf hangs down from underneath his has. It's a bit worn and torn, so Orko's either had it quite awhile or he's just a bit rough on it. Who knows; maybe both?
* Orko comes with three swappable portraits and the second one is a much more serious take on the Trollan mage. This one absolutely reminds me of the Sideshow statue statue that was designed by Nate Baertsch (another heroic master of MOTU) and sculpted by Matt Black. This one has a bit of a darker fantasy feel to it, giving us a design reminiscent of the black mages from Final Fantasy or perhaps something from World of Warcraft. He's not as spooky as Sideshow's design, balancing a bit more of the Filmation aesthetic in this take. 

* His scarf reminds me a bit of an old West bandanna and his eyes are gold and pupilless. Orko's face looks less shadowy here and more like he might actually have truly black skin. That's always possible, right? Even with blue hands and ears? Eh, it's surely just a style choice, though. Still, there's a hint of facial detail here. It's tough to pull something like this off on a sculpted item, but Mondo's team did a great job. 

* Check out Orko's hat here! I love the patches. It's pretty neat to think that he's patched this hat up over time. He's a travelling, roaming wizard, kind of like Gandalf, or perhaps Radagast the Brown. I'm also loving the little baubles hanging from the point of the hat. They're attached via a piece of string and they look quite neat dangling there.

* This head still has a scarf tail coming from the back but it's longer and thinner. Again, the scarf's are attached to the heads and not to the body of the figure.

* Last up is a really surprising new head: Orko unmasked! Orko unmasked was shown in the book He-Man and She-Ra: A Complete Guide to the Classic Animated Adventures and was shown in an illustration by Dusan Mitrovic that was based on Filmation storyboard art by Steve Hickner. It's refined here a bit more and is actually pretty cute. Unusual, sure, but very much a Filmation styled design. I can absolutely see this as Orko without his hat and scar, can't you? It's probably not how I'll display the figure ever but it's still a pretty neat extra that's very unique. 

* I love this vest-like piece that rests over Orko's robes. It seems like a tunic or something, perhaps intended to be made of leather. Orko's "O" is a very elaborate piece of jewelry, like in the MYP cartoon and Four Horsemen Studios designed 200x toyline. It's really neither here nor there but I loved how MOTU: Revelation and MOTU: Revolution handled Orko. I loved seeing him finally being able to handle his power. And the whole Orko/ Oracle thing? Loved it. Seriously, as an Orko fan I'm so happy for his storyline there.

* Orko's also sporting a pouch on his belt, two small, blue crystals hanging from his belt (via a string), and a small coin or medallion (also hanging from a string). I love the little flourishes to show Orko carrying a variety of trinkets. You never know what magic you're going to need!

* He's also sporting some pouches on his belt filled with goodies. They're not removable or anything but they look great.

* Guess what else we get to see? Orko's legs and feet! Mondo's team also designed some slender legs for Orko. They're not posable but are sculpted as if he's tucking them up above him. It's an interesting design and a neat detail. I was quite surprised myself. Don't like that Orko has legs? Just keep his robe covering them and you'll never know.

* Orko has twelve regular swappable hands: A pair of open hands, a pair of fists, a pair of griping hands, and a pair of gesturing, expressive hands.

*I forgot to snap a picture but he also comes with a second pair of the open hands and gesturing hands. these ones have longer nails, though, and seem to be intended for the modern or more serious Orko head. 

* Orko also has two specialized spellcasting hands. First up is a right hand with a massive magical flame. It's really impressive and it molded in translucent green and blue. It's just resting on his hand, perhaps lighting his path or prepped and ready to hurl at one of the Evil Warriors.

* The second hand has a large swirling magic effect, maybe a portal opening or some sort of alteration spell. I love the bright colors and the mixture of red and orange. 

* To keep Orko hovering Mondo included a clear flight stand with a hinged clamp that swivels and three hinges. The base is clear though it does have the texture of a stone floor to it. You may need to use a miniature screwdriver to tighten the screws at each hinge, though, as they were a bit loose out of the package. If you're familiar with the stands that Mezco includes in the One:12 Collective line you should know what to expect here.

* Orko doesn't have a ton of articulation, but most of that is due to the design of the character. With the well articulated arms and the fantastic barbell jointed neck, Orko can really be fun to pose. Also consider that you get to use the stand to have him hover in different positions; that really opens up some more options.

* The 200x toyline gave Orko a really cool magic wand based on the ripcord included with the vintage figure. We've got a very similar wand here, too. It's gorgeous! It's very ornate with an "O" shaped top.

* When not busy cleaning his room or helping out He-Man, Orko likes to read. Check out this cool grimoire he comes with. I love the detail on the covers and the spine. It doesn't close; it's permanently open, but you can balance it in one of Orko's hands.

* The inside text has all kinds of "writing" as well as an image of Daimar the demon. Maybe if Orko had seen this image he wouldn't have summoned Daimar in the first place.

* I love that Orko comes with his little stuffed buddy. I don't know if it has a specific name (I don't know it and couldn't fine a name for it) but it's pretty funny looking. Kind of reminds me of a Moogle from Final Fantasy. This guy was in Orko's room in the Filmation series, so this is a pretty neat extra.

* There's no articulation but this guy is definitely a solid piece with great paint applications that capture the look of a plushie/ stuffed animal. I love the sculpted stitches and seams, too.

* Interestingly, you also get a smaller version of Orko that looks like the classic Filmation depiction of the character. This is a fantastic looking figure. Honestly, I'm convinced this was done to give fans an Orko to use with their Masters of the Universe Classics or Masterverse figures. Mattel only released Orko once and this once looks brighter and more dynamic. 

* The face is pretty good. This is a smaller figure, definitely not anywhere as large as the 1/6th scale figure, so the detail is a bit more basic. I'll probably be putting him with my Super7 and Mattel Filmation inspired MOTUC figures. He looks like he's ready to cause some trouble, don't you think?

* Since he's a smaller figure in this line Mondo only gave him two joints: Swivel shoulders. He looks like he's ready to cast some spells, though, and of course they're probably going to backfire.

* Orko also comes with a three piece stand. You can take the clip off the top of the stand and have Orko balance on the stand, too. It works OK though the clip is much steadier. 

* Dree Elle is also included here. Orko's Trollan girlfriend and maybe fiancée actually seems a bit bigger than Orko, maybe due to her hair and hood being a bit larger. She's built like Orko and designed with a fairy animated appearance, which is fitting since she's from the Filmation animated series and appeared in four episodes of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, one episode of She-Ra: Princess of Power, and in the Christmas special. She's a cute companion figure and, if you missed Super7's release of her, she could make a decent stand in figure in your MOTUC collection. 

* The paintwork on her hair, veil, and eyes is really sharp! The eyes and hair are nice and bright and everything just really goes together so well. She's quite a cute figure!

* Dree Elle also has swivel shoulders, allowing you to give her a bit of expression.

* She has the same three-piece plastic stand as Orko which allows her to hover, too. I actually was able to get her to rest on the top which makes her look a bit better on the shelf. You can kind of pose her at different angles, too, so that's a plus.

* Here's a shot of Orko with a Masters of the Universe Classics Prince Adam. The scale is a bit larger perhaps, but I don't think these little companion figures look too bad with the Classics line.

* The final companion figure is Daimar from the Filmation episode "Daimar the Demon." Mondo has delivered Daimar in his cute form, so he makes a good playmate for Orko. He's a simple, solid figure who really captures often cutesy Filmation style.

* Daimar's portrait really reminds me of a Harvey Comics character. He's a funny little guy!

* Flip him around and you can see his still tiny wings and the small cluster of spikes on his tale. I wonder if anyone will ever release a full-sized Daimar figure?

The Negatives:

* The black lining of Orko's sleeve isn't supposed to come out like this but it did after I changed Orko's hands a time or two. It's a real pain to stuff it back in, too, and it's tough to get it to set right.

* The Filmation Orko looks a bit skinny from the side to me. Does anyone else think so? Maybe skinny isn't the right word, but he looks like he's kind of flat.

   I'm really, really pleased with this set. Orko himself is incredible and maybe one of my favorite Mondo figures to date. I don't pick up many these days so it has to be a pretty impressive figure to catch my eye. Furthermore, the array of little extras make this just a fun set with lots of display options. You can tell the team Mondo has working on this set are hardcore MOTU fans and this set is truly a love letter to Orko. I'm so glad that I didn't skip this one. I'm buying fewer larger scale items these days due to cost and space and I'm particularly selective with 1/6th scale and statues, but Orko and friends is an Epic set that just brings a smile to my face.

I've reviewed so many figures of Orko that he has his own archive. Check out the Trouble with Trollans for all of my Orko reviews.

These are my first reviews of Daima and Dree Elle. For more Masters of the Universe reviews of the Mondo figures check out the following:



  1. Can't say I'm a fan of Mondo's style (or pricing) so this doesn't work for me and that unmasked face is a creepy blend of cartoon and 'realistic' and with those gangly legs it just reminds me too much of Gollum (and i hate that damn thing :P ). The legs are a strange thing because they never made much sense. If he's tucking them up that's gotta be uncomfortable. And when we've seen glimpses of under the robe there's been absolutely nothing there, yet there are times when Orko is sitting (usually after being knocked back by one of his own magic tricks or something) and what appear to be bumps formed by knees are visible on his robe. The robe having to be extra long to cover those legs too. I don't mind Orko having legs but I always imagined they'd be kinda stumpy and short and why Trollans would prefer to float everywhere instead. Either way this figure certainly makes him a lot less cute. There's just a weird mesh of aesthetics here that I find unappealing and he's not the only Mondo figure I feel that way about.

    The smaller figures are pretty good. Any chance they'd sell those separately?

    1. Their pricing has really gotten out of hand. I know everyone has gone up on their pricing and nothing stays the same but Mondo has gone up by over 50%!

      It is weird that he's tucking the legs up, but I guess if he can float maybe they're just floating, too. I really like the design, though, and Mondo's mish-mash of aesthetics. Right now I have the more serious portrait on him as I love the Sideshow statue of Orko and this one really draws from that.

      I highly doubt they'd ever sell the smaller figures separately. They've never done it before and usually reserve those as exclusive pieces. If they ever did I'd love the Imp figure from the Filmation Hordak. I already had the exclusive Hordak and wasn't going to double dip at this price. You might find someone selling them separate, though, as the aesthetic is definitely different from the Mondo figures.

  2. Since I always thought of Orko as comic relief in the cartoon, this version looks outstanding. Seems like it can fit into many darker toy lines.

    1. Yeah, and since Orko is so odd looking, who's to say what size he is? He'd actually make a cool floating wizard for the Mythic Legions figures. I just picked up a bunch of the Poxxus series at HeroesCon in Charlotte a weekend or two ago and he'd look pretty cool with them.


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