What MOTU Origins creatures are coming next in line? Find out NOW in Part 3 of our teased card and box art mini series
In the last of our 3-part series, we take a look one last time at the amazing artwork by Axel Gimenez found on MOTU Origins packages and find those final hidden “Easter Eggs” in the artwork which teases us as to what might be produced next. In today’s final article we will focus on creatures! For example, Mattel has teased Stridor way back in Wave 5 on Fisto’s card back artwork, and hey what do you know Stridor has just been released and is widely available.
By the way if you want to check out a great review and vintage comparison on Stridor, check out our article below:
Stridor is currently IN STOCK at Amazon for $29.99 with the link below
Heroic Warrior Creatures:
Our Heroic Warriors have always had their furry friends and flying companions by their side, so let’s take a look at what Heroic Creatures Mattel might be teasing through their artwork!
Ah the mystical bird Zoar! An integral part of the Masters of the Universe lore! Zoar is the Sorceress and the Sorceress is Zoar! I mean we would not have the Toy Sorceress (writing this article by the way) without Zoar, so we have to thank this little orange and blue bird!
In the Filmation cartoon, the Sorceress did not have her powers outside Castle Grayskull, and transformed into the mystical bird Zoar when she left the castle walls!
Similar to Battlecat and Panthor, the mold for Zoar and Screech came from tooling that already existed of an eagle from the 1972 Big Jim Line by Mattel. The large bird’s color scheme was molded after the colors of the Filmation cartoon. The button on the eagles back activated the flight mode and made the wings flap up and down.
The vintage Zoar was also released in a 2 pack with Teela. This harkens back to MOTU lore about Teela (spoiler alert) being the Sorceress’ daughter and the bond that Zoar and Teela have.
Zoar was spotted most recently in his Mattel vintage style on the artwork found on the back of the package for Stridor. He is flying by Stridor’s side just outside Castle Grayskull.
In our previous article, our Toy Habits source had confirmed that a Zoar and Teela two pack was in the works for the Origins line, and was reported to be a Big Bad Toy Store and Entertainment Earth exclusive, and boy was he right! Mattel just announced this past week that the Teela Zoar 2-Pack is going to be released, and is already up for Pre-Order on BBTS & EE! If you want to pre-order the Teela Zoar two pack, check out our article Teela & Zoar MOTU Origins 2-Pack Exclusive Preorder for the links! So, we know that teasing thru the artwork is Mattel’s little way of telegraphing what’s to come.
Princess of Power:
Moving onto the Princess of Power sub-line, this line has the most room to grow in Origins as it has yet to be developed beyond the two versions of She-Ra. Let’s take a look at some of our favorite equines (horsies) and a stray bird, shall we?
The Princess of Power line gave us some wonderful characters, and they also brought up some unforgettable animal companions as well. As seen on this vintage poster below, many of the main characters in the Princess of Power line had their animal friends they could count on when they needed help!
The vintage Glory Bird from the Princess of Power line was based on the same Zoar and Screech birds as the Masters of the Universe line. Glory Bird came in a golden pink color and his armor harness was gold with pink fur.
Glory Bird was spotted right next to Loo-kee hiding in a tree on card back artwork of the standard release Masters of the Universe Origins She-Ra.
Steed of the Great Rebellion and Bow’s trusted friend, Arrow didn’t have a huge role on the She-Ra Princess of Power Filmation cartoon like Swift Wind did, but he was still an important character to the show.
Released in 1985, and coined “Arrow the true-blue horse that flies”, the Mattel version of Arrow, did not resemble the Filmation version at all, which was actually a typical occurrence with this line of toys. Colored in light blue shimmery plastic, Mattel’s version of Arrow was a wing cladded horse similar to Swift Wind that included a golden saddle and rooted blue hair for kids to style and comb.
Appearing on the 2020 Power Con exclusive She-Ra card art, Bow can be seen riding his trusty steed with the rest of his rebellion friends, in front of the Crystal Castle.
Swift Wind or “Swifty” as She-Ra affectionately referred to him, was the other big star of the She-Ra Princess of Power Filmation cartoon! My favorite character as a kid and now, Swifty was always there to assist She-Ra in fighting the Evil Horde and came to the rescue whenever she needed him. I loved the sound of his voice too; it just fit him so well! The animators chose to color Swifty in a beautiful color scheme, by coloring him as a white horse, his multicolored wings and pink and blue mask really stood out and gave him that signature look that everyone knows and loves!
The Mattel Princess of Power version of Swift Wind, released in 1985, also did not resemble the Swift Wind from Filmation, but rather was a shimmery pink colored horse with gold, white and pink wings, a gold mask and saddle with pink rooted hair. Just like Arrow, allowing kids to comb and style Swift Wind’s hair, which was a pivotal part of the play pattern for the Princess of Power toy line.
Shown below is the vintage Mattel Princess of Power Swift Wind and She-Ra, from the personal collection of the none other than the Toy Sorceress! Love my horsie!!! Swifty and She-Ra sit proudly on the shelf over my desk where I am currently authoring this article!
Appearing on the 2020 Power Con exclusive She-Ra card art, She-Ra can be seen riding her trusted companion Swift Wind in an amazing piece of artwork by the great Axel Gimenez in his shimmering pink Mattel version! Again, to me this is a tease that we might someday get a Pop version of Swift Wind.
She-Ra and Shift Wind are also illustrated on the back of the card back with the rest of the Rebellion in front of the Crystal Castle.
The Evil Horde:
Let’s dive in and take a look at what creatures from the Evil Horde Mattel teases us with in the artwork for Hordak and his minions.
According to the Wiki Grayskull:
Mantisaur is Hordak’s mount, making him the Horde equivalent to Battle Cat and Panthor. Mantisaur’s first appearance is in the minicomic Between a Rock and a Hard Place!, where he is able to speak and can control insects. Mantisaur also appears in the Star MOTU comics and in the She-Ra TV episode A Talent for Trouble, although in the series, he is green instead of his normal red-and-black.Mantisaur | Wiki Grayskull | Fandom
Released in 1986, Mattel’s version of the Mantesour was a direct translation of how he was depicted in the minicomics. With it’s bright red head, bulging eyes and spider like legs, this was truly a sight to see. The removeable saddle allowed Hordak or one of his minions to ride on the Mantesours’s back and also included a rotating rear gun. Kids really enjoyed this insectoid steed for Hordak!
The Mantisaur can first be spotted on the Masters of the Universe Origins Buzzsaw Hordak Card back Artwork. He is prominently illustrated in the background, flanking Buzzsaw Hordak.
The Mantisaur was next featured in the steps of the Fright Zone throne room in the masterful interior artwork for the 2021 Masters of the Universe Origins Power-Con Exclusive Horde 4 Pack.
Clawdeen, Catra’s trusted pink lion animal companion, only appeared once in the animated She-Ra Princess of Power Filmation series. In that episode, Clawdeen captures the rebels into a cage, but in the end, Bow traps her in the cage and she is never seen again on the cartoon. Clawdeen also appeared in the vintage Ladybird books as well. In those stories, Clawdeen could talk and she was Catra’s main mode of transportation.
First released in 1986 as part of the Princess of Power Line, Clawdeen was a pink flocked lion with rooted clurly hair, had a crown and beautiful silver saddle for Catra to ride on top. She also had clear jeweled eyes and green eye shadow! Clawdeen was the only cat produced for the Pop line. I always wanted one of these as a kid but was never lucky enough to own her.
Clawdeen was also released in a Catra / Clawdeen 2 Pack, and came packaged in a window box gift set style as was common with figure and animal companion sets.
Appearing on the right trifold from the 2020 Power Con exclusive She-Ra card art, Catra can be seen riding Clawdeen with some of her Evil Horde companions in front of the Fright Zone. This beautiful illustration is yet again another tease from Mattel of what might be to come!
Skeletor and his evil Warriors had their own set of creatures that they used to get around Eternia or to help carry out their evil plans. So, let’s take a look at what Mattel might have in store for us in the hidden easter eggs in the artwork.
Unlike Zoar who was the magical formation of the Sorceress, Screech was the robotic bird that Skeletor sent out to spy on the Heroic Warriors. As mentioned above Screech too came from existing tooling from the 1972 eagle from the Big Jim Line. Released in 1983, the large bird’s color scheme was molded after the colors of the Filmation cartoon, blue and purple. Screech too had a button on his back that activated the flight mode and made the wings flap up and down.
Screech was first spotted on the Panthor package artwork flying in the background over Skeletor’s shoulder.
The second and most recent iteration of Screech was illustrated on the Origins Stridor package artwork. He is swopping in for the attack and Dragon Blaster Skeletor can be seen swooping in from behind!
Battle Bones was first seen in the mini comic “Skeletor’s Dragon, in 1974. At first, Skeletor is commanding Battle Bones to be his slave and use it for evil. But by the end of the comic, Battle Bones is serving He-Man and the heroic warriors! Look at the smile on their faces!
Battle Bones came out in 1985 and was meant to be a carrying case for your MOTU figures. It could hold 12 of your favorite characters and the mouth opened up to hold all of the accessories! According to the Battle Ram Blog, Battle Bones was designed by Ed Watts, who also designed the Dragon Walker. His concept (shown below) is very close to what was actually produced by Mattel, but the body was elongated, and a handle was added on the back. Also, the teeth, eyes and horns were modified as well.
Below is an image of the actual vintage Battle Bones package that Mattel produced. It included some beautiful artwork illustrating how the unique carrying case actually worked.
Photo of actual vintage Battle Bones carrying case that Mattel produced. Check out the center spine bones you can use as a handle. All the MOTU characters are all lined up and ready to travel. How cool would it be if we actually got one of these today?!
Battle Bones has only been featured once on the MOTU Origins card back art thus far. You can see him prominently in the swamp background on this Mosquitor card back artwork.
According to the Wiki Grayskull:
Spydor is a large mechanical spider used to transport the Evil Warriors. Spydor was once an ordinary, if gigantic spider, however it was captured by Beast Man and brought to Snake Mountain, where Skeletor used his Mechano-Ray to transform it into a machine completely obedient to Skeletor. He would use Spydor to devasting effect in an attack on the Royal Palace of Eternia, even managing to deprive He-Man of his Power Sword. Prince Adam would eventually infiltrate Snake Mountain, reclaim the Power Sword, and become He-Man again. He-Man would defeat Spydor with the help of the newly mechanized Sy-Klone.Spydor | Wiki Grayskull | Fandom
Mattel’s version of Spydor released in 1985, was featured as the” Incredible walking creature with the amazing mechanical legs!” Famous for the 80’s style battery powered toys, these 6 legged black and red mechanical spider allowed you to sit Skeletor in the cockpit and it actually walked! You could also use the spring action claws in the front to capture He-Man with! Never had this as a kid, but sounds like a blast to play with!
Spydor was spotted on only one card back thus far, and you might have missed him! Located on the upper left-hand corner of the MOTU origins Merman card back, Battle Armor Skeletor can be seen riding atop Spydor battling it our with Battle armor He-Man!
The Night Stalker horse was Jitsu’s ride and also Stridor and Fisto’s nemesis. Made to be the evil version of Stridor, the 1985 vintage Night Stalker was a complete repaint of the Stridor mold, colored in black, gold and purple color scheme.
The Masters of the Universe Classics line did their own version of Night Stalker as well. Similar to the Stridor release, Night Stalker came with 2 alternate purple-colored helmets.
Nightstalker was spotted only once and very subtly on Fisto Origins card back artwork. If you didn’t pay attention, you would have missed him as he truly was a hidden easter egg!
Thanks for joining us in this amazing 3-part article series on what is Mattel Teasing through their Package artwork! Again, this is all speculation on Toy Habits part, but it’s been a total blast speculating on what might come!
If you want to read part 1 and part 2 of our 3-part series of the Teased, Whats Next in the Masters of the Universe Origins from Card Art series, click on the links below:
You can also watch our teaser thru card art Part 1 – Characters, Part 2- Vehicles and just released Part 3- Creatures You Tube videos below: