I love skulls and skeletons. From sugar skulls to plastic skeletons, I’m hooked on the bony little guys. They’re not just for Halloween, but for today’s Monstrous Monday post, let’s explore the wonder of skeleton toys.
Skeletor is the penultimate skeleton toy, or at least the most widely recognized. Whether in his classic ’80s scale or in Masters of the Universe Classics modern size, Skelly never disappoints. Mattel created many different versions of Skeletor in the original line: regular, Battle Armor, Dragon Blaster, Terror Claws, and the super-rare Laserlight. Of these, my favorite has always been Battle Armor Skeletor. I love the paint apps on his head and the coloring of the bat on his armor plate. Plus, how fun is it to punch his chest and roll it back? He’s not a hard figure to find, but sometimes it’s hard to find one where the chest still locks in normal position.
New Adventures Skeletor is a mixed bag of wacky. (Incidentally, this totally fits his character on the cartoon. If you’ve never seen this show, it’s bizarre, sometimes boring, and always goofy as hell.) The original falls in line with the “He-Man in Spaaaaaaaace” theme of the show: more futuristic armor, a cloth cape, and removable helmet. He also has eyeballs, which is weird, but I guess a little less creepy than hollow sockets. Then there’s Disks of Doom Skeletor. The best part of Disks of Doom Skelly is the weird helmet/cabinet hybrid he’s wearing on his head. Seriously, this thing looks like a hanging cabinet from IKEA. I also love the robotic skull chest armor. Plus, his action is that he flings plastic throwing stars at the eyes of unsuspecting victims. All fun and games, right? Battle Blade Skeletor is fun in that he has rooted hair, and by fun, I mean gross. It’s funny, but I don’t understand it. He also has glow in the dark skull armor, which is cool, but it kinda resembles a back brace. It’s plausible, though, that He-Man put him in traction at some point, right? Rounding out this line, one of the vehicles was a Skull-Copter, and it’s just what it sounds like: a helicopter that’s a skull.
Masters of the Universe Classics has tackled regular Skeletor, Battle Armor, and Dragon Blaster variations. They’ve also branched out a bit to include an Alfredo Alcala head sculpt, based on early mini-comic art, and even a Skelly missing a tooth that was packed in with Mo-Larr, Eternian Dentist. This SDCC set was based on a gag from Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken. It was met with both delight and WTF-ness, and could be found most recently at Big Lots around the country for an Alexander Hamilton. (We bought one and used the body buck to make an Alcala Skeletor, using the extra head from Demo-Man. He is the best version of Skeletor.) Mattel has promised that they would finish out the original line in Classics form, so we should expect to see Terror Claws and perhaps Laserlight in the near future. I hope they tackle at least one of the New Adventures Skeletors. I’m sure it will be the original, but I’d love to see the Four Horsemen’s interpretation of Disks of Doom.
MTC Nightmare Warriors
It’s no secret that I love knock-off toys, especially in the Masters of the Universe scale. These guys appeal to so many things I love. First, they’re skeletons of historical figures. Second, they glow in the dark. Third, they’re historical skeletons that glow in the dark. I have Spartacus, Major Bones, and Sir Lancelot. I love every one of them. Of the ones I don’t have, I reeeeeeeeeeally want Pancho Villa. I feel my life will be complete when I get him. Perhaps at the Chicago Toy Show this weekend? Cross your fingers, kiddies. I don’t know much about these guys. They were manufactured by Multi-Toy Corporation, or MTC, and they’re tough to find. None of mine are complete, but they’re cool in any condition, since their helmets/headpieces are attached.
Tomy Pocket Power Glo-Bones
In the late ’80s, Tomy released a line of toys called Pocket Power. Each one was a vehicle, a game, a gun, or in the case of Glo-Bones, one of the coolest small toys I’ve ever seen. Not only is he a glow in the dark skeleton, but he also comes with a shield, horned helmet, dagger, and mace/halberd. He’s incredibly posable, and check out that face! He is definitely a lot of fun. While he’s not the rarest of toys, it can be difficult to find one complete. We got lucky with this one–he’s like brand new, and as you can see, can be a lot of fun.
Honorable Mentions in the Skeleton Toy Hall of Fame: Remco Warrior Beasts Skullman, Remco Conan Jewel Thief, Kenner Terminator 2 Endoglow Terminator
Honestly, the honorable mentions could have been “any toy that’s a skeleton”, but these guys are the best of what I own. Of the skeleton toys I don’t own, the Revoltech Harryhausen Skeleton is up there. And there are some other bootleg/knock-off skeletons out there that I don’t possess, sadly. And though I didn’t cover them, there are a lot of cool skeleton art toys out there.
That’s it! Aren’t skeleton toys the best?