Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Toy Review: Masters of the Universe Classics Filmation Nepthu from Mattel – Tag Team Review

“After a lifetime of searching, the Sun Scarab is mine. And with it I, Nepthu, can rule Eternia! No - the whole universe!”

I don’t dislike Nepthu like I do Karatti, but I also didn’t really feel all that inclined to give him a full review. He’s basically a guy in a towel and a dick hat. But before I even really had time to think about reviewing this precursor to Mumm-Ra the Ever Living, Mr. Beau Brown sent me his review, unsolicited.
I was ecstatic.
I love Needless Things and I love writing about toys and stuff, but every once in a while I get a little burned out. You can tell when this occurs. If all of a sudden there are a bunch of Guest Posts for no apparent reason; that means that a couple of weeks prior I hit a wall and decided I needed relief. October typically burns me out.
So this won’t be a standard review, just a collection of thoughts from me and Beau about yet another weirdo from Filmation.
Oh, and I either haven’t seen or don’t remember this episode and He-Man and the Masters of the Universe is no longer available on Netflix. And I just couldn’t see shelling out for that box set because as much as I love the characters of MOTU, the 80s cartoon is… not always awesome. So that’s why I took a bunch of pictures that make it appear that Nepthu and this bird are pals. I thought it was some kind of magical minion.
Nepthu is the Club FILMATION item for October. He is basically an Egyptian Count Marzo. He is a Wicked Sun Sorcerer, who has a crazy magic amulet-thingy which gives him your general evil Sorcerer package. Flying, Energy Blasts, Forcefields, TK, Mind Powers - all that good stuff. However if he loses the amulet he is a weak old man just like 200X Count Marzo.
Although on second thought and some research into my handy copy of “The unofficial cartoon guide to He-Man and the Masters of the Universe” by James Eatock, we find that Filmation Count Marzo was in 3 classic episodes and in none of them is he portrayed as he is in the 200X series. He did some evil magician stuff, tried to get some kids hooked on drugs and had a flower garden on Trolla, but nothing about the amulet. So in actuality the 200X series took Nepthu's story and gave it to Count Marzo.
We find in his bio that he was a servant of Marzo. So they steal this guy's origin, give it to Marzo and then make him Marzo's bitch. That's cold Nietlich, cold. He vows revenge when Count Marzo's powers are taken away and wanders around in the desert until he finds a magic scarab which gives him his powers. I reckon he and Marzo had a little more going on and when he was reduced to a feeble old man and Nepthu couldn't snuggle into his oiled up Eternian pecs anymore he vowed revenge to return his lover to his former studly evil sorcerer glory. I bet Marzo was just using him... ‘cause he is evil. The Count Marzo from FILMATION had a servant named Chimera.
Anyhoo, Classics Nepthu has a boner for 200X Marzo and copies the origin story from 200X Marzo that FILMATION Marzo stole from FILMATION Nepthu in first place... follow me? Good. Then he is given his powers back by King Hssss (somehow) and serves him in the Second Ultimate Battleground. No word on whether or not he survived it. King Hssss might very well have eaten him. Because the Snake Men are cannibal Nazi snake people and dicks.
So that's Nepthu's story. He was with Marzo so you could put him on your Great Unrest shelf with Marzo if you want, or put him with King Hssss, or your FILMATION shelf if you do that. He might look good next to Marzo both of them brandishing their magic items.
As for his sculpt, the first thing is his face. He just does not look evil. Just taking a look at his Bio pic he looks WAY more evil in FILMATION. He needs that Egyptian eye liner thing going on and the crazy power mad sorcerer eyes. I imagine we will see a custom head online very soon. I think that would have made a huge improvement to a character without a whole lot going on.
I totally agree. Nepthu’s facial expression is not that of a power mad sorcerer – it’s that of a big lug that likes puppies. He’s almost pre-laugh, and it’s not a “I am about to destroy your bird friend and bring ruin to your world” laugh; it’s a “Boy, that Man-E-Faces sure does tell funny jokes” laugh.
Actually, until I read the bio on the card I thought Nepthu was a good guy.
I think I’m going to try and use one of the extra-fine Sharpies to apply some guyliner. It might make him slightly more sinister, or at least a bit douchier. If that doesn’t work I’ll add some thick-rimmed glasses.
Nepthu is the kind of figure that pays for other figures. He is mostly reused parts. Which I am fine with - it is a fact of the existence of the line. Without the Nepthus we wouldn't get Mantennas, Ram Mans, or Moduloks. He has Bow's boots, a new loincloth, new arm bands, new collar, and head. He has Marzo's spell casting hand which can hold his Sun Scarab. The collar is cool - it might look good one someone else too.
I feel it is important to note that those aren’t just new armbands, they’re new biceps. I’m not sure why Matty went to the trouble of sculpting all-new ones rather than just making little slide-on accessories like the Horde armbands, but they did. And they look good.
His head looks like a dick.
Yes, yes it does.
He also comes with a Crystal Zoar from his cartoon appearance. It looks cool. I like that you can get him in a position where it looks like he is taunting He-Man with shattering her.
I think this bird looks great aside from the apparent and hideous “China” stamped under its left wing. I wonder if I could scrape that off.
Like I said above, I thought this was Nepthu’s spirit friend or something. I had no idea it was actually Zoar. This is another side-effect of Matty’s lazy refusal to identify the accessories that come with the MOTUC figures. And my lazy refusal to look shit up on the internet.
I suppose this means we’ll be seeing a translucent bird stand in a future Weapons Pack. Although didn’t they say no more Weapons Packs? If so, how are they doing Lookee?
Nepthu also comes with an ankh that Beau is calling a “Sun Scarab”. Maybe the Eternian word for “ankh” is “scarab”. I dunno. The thing is made of rubber and is all malformed right out of the package. Once you straighten it out it looks pretty good and has a decent little paint job. But it still isn’t a scarab.
So Nepthu is just alright. He makes a cool character to add to Marzo since he is mostly a loner. I am all about new crazy sorcerers. However, his lack of new and interesting parts and accessories that could be useful for someone other than him makes him lose points. His biggest problem is his face sculpt. The 4 Horsemen missed it on this one, which is not something they normally do. Especially on face sculpts.
(2 out 5)
Nepthu is okay, but he isn’t weird enough for me to really like in the way that I have the other Filmation releases. The face is the biggest strike against this one. If he had some kind of maniacal expression it might just be enough to tip this figure into the “Really Like” category. As he is, Nepthu is potential eBay fodder once I need the shelf space or some money. Which will basically be when Grayskull arrives.
3 out of 5
Until next time! Good Journey!
-Beau
What he said,
-Phantom
 

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