Back on January 30, 2024, the Mobile Armored Strike Kommand M.A.S.K. Trademark was renewed by Hasbro, which signals something is in the works!
Hold on to your butts! Back on January 30, 2024, Hasbro filed to review the trademark for their M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armored Strike Kommand) toy line. We’ve been keeping tabs on Mattel’s Masters of the Universe Trademark renewals and Hasbro for their GI Joe line and we are elated to see that Hasbro has renewed one of the best toy lines from the 1980’s. Debuting in 1985, the Kenner toy line of secret task force M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armored Strike Kommand) fighting the criminal organization V.E.N.O.M. (Vicious Evil Network Of Mayhem) debut. After the initial cartoon and toy line launch in 1985, the franchise spawned a variety of products, including four series of action figures, an animated television series, video games and comics. Collector’s have been waiting for a M.A.S.K. relaunch and hopefully this means that Hasbro will finally be doing something with the line instead of letting it die or whither on the vine.
M.A.S.K. Television Series
According to the M.A.S.K. Wiki, “a total of 75 syndicated episodes of M.A.S.K. were broadcast from 1985 to 1986. One of many cartoons produced during the 1980s as a vehicle for toy merchandising, M.A.S.K. (which is an acronym for the Mobile Armored Strike Kommand), was a hybrid of popular era cartoons G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero and The Transformers.”
M.A.S.K. vs. V.E.N.O.M.
M.A.S.K. (an acronym for Mobile Armored Strike Kommand) is a special task force featuring an array of characters, led by Matt Trakker, with transforming vehicles engaged in an ongoing battle against the criminal organization V.E.N.O.M. (an acronym for Vicious Evil Network of Mayhem), with an emphasis on super-powered masks worn by the characters on the show. It is never made clear what sort of criminal organization V.E.N.O.M. is, exactly. They were not the typical world-conquering villains and their schemes mostly revolve around profiting from illegal activities and doing mercenary services.
M.A.S.K. Toy Line
M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armored Strike Kommand) was a special toy line that was produced by Kenner in in 1985. M.A.S.K. was unique as it featured, what you would refer to as “normal” looking vehicles in a that fit a 2-inch action figure. Hidden inside the normal looking vehicles were hidden weapons and armor while also transforming into different vehicle types (such as a helicopter changing into a jet). One of the greatest aspects of the line was it featured featured a spring-loaded parts that assisted with the transformation of the vehicles. You also had to manually positioned parts and pieces to complete the transformation, which made the toys really fun to play with. There were also removable accessories and projectiles for certain vehicles, which added to the fun factor. Each vehicle included a figure and a removable mask which gave the figure different powers. The line was ahead of its time and had windowless boxes that contained the toy, a mini comic, and product catalogs.
The very first M.A.S.K. that my parents bought for me was the Thunderhawk and was fell, hook line, and sinker for the line! Introduced in Wave 1, the Thunderhawk is a Chevy Camero, more specifally, the IROC-Z that, with the press of a button, tuned into a fighter jet that featured retractable wing cannons and 2 bombs that stowed underneath the car’s chassis.
One of the great things about the MASK box art as a whole is the bright colors. The red and yellow really stand out, which caught our eyes as kids. The front of the box featured an illustation of the vehicle in jet mode with a smaller product shot of the actual toy in vehicle mode. On the back of the box, it featured a blown up version of the toy in jet mode with the same image (just a little larger) of Matt Trakker and his spectrum mask!
Chevy Camero IROC-Z Mode
One of the cars we used to see back in 80’s was the Chevy Camaro IROC-Z, which the Thunderhawk was modeled after. It was a nice bright red with actual rubber tires! The purple stickers, which you had to apply yourself, were a cool contrast to the overall color of the vehicle that featured yellow lightning bolts.
Jet Fighter Mode
With a press of a button on the top of the car, the IROC-Z would change from a Chevy Camaro to a jet fighter and we can still hear that click of the gull-wing doors opening! Slide out the chrome cannons on the side you can you got yourself a makeshift wing, adding to the effect of the vehicle in jet mode!
When looking at the rear of the vehicle, the bumper also raised up to reveal the jet engies and a MASK license plate!
Matt Trakker Figure
Introduced in the first iteration and rollout of Series 1, the Matt Trakker figure featured two versions of the Spectrum mask. Most The “short” mask most closely resembles the cartoon appearance and, for all purposes, is sought after by collectors due to it’s hard to find nature and short production run. Believed to be a choking hazard by many, Kenner made the mask longer, which actually introduces more of a choking hazard in our opinion, because you are more like not to choke on the short mask due to it’s size. We are not endorsing swallowing these masks but just trying to make a point. He featured blonde (yellow) hair with a gray and red flight suit with brown straps. The Spectrum mask, in the cartoon, creates a high frequency radio interference, which was useful in the fight against VENOM!
Matt Trakker is the founder and leader of M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armored Strike Kommand). After helping his brother Andy Trakker, and now arch enemy, Miles Mayhem, develop the MASK technology, Matt is in constant pursuit of Mayhem after he killed his brother and stole half of the tech and formed the criminal orginazition V.E.N.O.M.. To honor his brother’s death, Trakker created M.A.S.K. to fight crime and counter the threats from Mayhem’s evil organization.