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Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure Mattel, 2021
Day #2,694: March 26, 2024
Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure Lords of Power Mer-Man
Ocean Warlord!

Masters of the Universe Origins Action Figure
Item No.:
Asst. GNN84 No. GYY23
Manufacturer: Mattel
Includes: Sword, Sucker Punch Mini-Comic
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $17.99
Availability: July 2021
Other: Based on the Cross-Sell Art of 1982

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Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action FigureWhen I saw Mattel was relaunching Masters of the Universeat multiple scales, I thought they'd burn out of stuff to do quickly - not seeing Sun-Man, Turtles of Grayskull, or Lords of Power Mer-Man as likely inclusions. Expanding the myhtos is always a good idea, and it looks like they'll be doing at least four flavors of the gilled goon that we know of. A single-carded toy release exists, a Filmation one is expected, and a variant Lords of Power version was in a pricey Power-Con exclusive gift set. They can also keep going - heck, this mold might provide a good basis for a 2002 repaint, which used this same toy head but featured copper armor and accessories. And a trident. It was a nice figure, a fun line that had jabbing action features and other gimmicks when collectors were demanding more articulation. It didn't last long, but it was a really good line.

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I'm trying to keep my Origins collection tight, so I assume this (and Filmation) is as far as I'll go for Mer-Man. The figure uses the same mold for the aforementioned exclusive set, but has more saturated, brighter colors and slightly less paint. The convention version had bubbles on his speedo, plus painted highlights on his armor and sword. He also looks a heck of a lot cooler than the original version of the toy, with huge eyes, retro Sea Monkeys-esque "hair," and decor on his boots and belt that also seem like they came out of a midcentury comic book ad. It's really charming, straddling the line between a 1980s action figure and something out of a long forgotten aquarium decoration kit.

The light blue is now dark, and it looks fine - the eyes, arms, and legs are so dark they're almost black. It's different, and leaves the door open for another future variant reissue. I love that they gave him four full super-articulated legs this time, rather than four legs crammed into two normal legs. I don't love that the mouth is a little weird, and the body detail seems quite soft. The sculpted copyrights on the lower black (or, copyright tramp stamp) look super-clear while the figure's other detailing looks pretty great. It could just be the thickness of the paint, but you can see the Horde armor seems to be suffering from generation loss. It's just incredibly soft detailing to the point where I think you can just blame many thick layers of orange paint over that dark blue plastic. I should also note that he has distinctive armor, and the addition of the gloves and boots really sets him apart from the perfectly nice 1982 original design.

Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure

Sadly this figure doesn't do much other than look awesome - which was why I wanted it. There is no sword-slashing. There is no swappable head. It's a fish guy and a sword, and thanks to his overly specific look modeled after Mattel's earlier concepts I'd say it's worth the retail asking price (or a bit more at a collector shop or eBay.) He doesn't look quite as evil, but I don't see that as a problem - he's closer to the cartoon, and the detailing is pretty great. You won't be impressed by amazing colors or matching-the-original deco, yet he captures the flavor of what the lines aspired to be before something changed his look in production.

This figure leans heavy on the whimsy and fantastical aquarium things you may have seen in pet shops a long time ago. It isn't extreme or particularly serious - it's cute, but an authentic match to that alternate head design. I hope they cycle him back in the main assortments again so fans get another crack at it. As I write this, it seems most stores are getting rid of Origins for a bit - and I hope they change that trend too.

--Adam Pawlus

Additional Images

Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure
Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure
Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure
Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure Mattel Masters of the Universe Origins Lords of Power Mer-Man Action Figure

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