Hey, figure freaks! So, fun story, I was working on a custom project in early July, slipped with my knife, and nearly cut off my left middle finger. Know what stopped the blade? BONE. Yeah, I cut ALL THE WAY TO THE BONE. Seriously. So, anyone wondering why I've not been posting figures for two months . . . that's HALF the reason. The other half? Well, I've been working on more figures! What, you thought a near-disfiguring injury was going to stop me? Pfft! Anyway, I know I've been somewhat absent from the front page of the custom showcase for a while, but that under NO circumstances mean's I've been idle! In fact, as a few of you know, I've been plugging away at some really great pieces for your enjoyment, and now I'm going to let you have a peek at the fruits of my toils over the last two months. Who's today's star? The champion of The Great Unrest, leader of the Masters of the Universe, and King of all Eternia, Randor!
MOTU Hybrid is my attempt to unify the best of all three MOTU eras. The ideas (i.e. color schemes and concepts) of the original cartoon, the sculpts of the 2002 toys, and the articulation of modern figures, at a far more reasonable cost. It's an awesome and ambitious project, but not always an easy one. And Randor is a prime example of the challenges that can sometimes arise in the process.
Like my other most recent MOTU Hybrid project, Randor started life as a mini-statue. No joints, just a thick mass of material. Unlike previous mini-statues however, Randor is NOT made of soft rubber resin. Nope, he's a solid chunk of the hard, cold-cast stuff, sculpted on a metal frame. Not only is he hard and heavy, but he becomes brittle when you hollow him out, and his resin becomes a fine powdery dust that gets EVERYWHERE. The guy is the definition of "difficult to work with."
Fortunately, my experience with the previous mini-statues (especially Clawful and Hordak) prepared me for this challenge, and I knew several dos and don'ts for the new project. First, under no circumstances was I going to attempt to salvage Randor's "skirt" like I did with Clawful. Just too difficult a process. Better to make one from scratch. Second, if the limbs are fairly bland, you don't need to keep them, they can be replaced in their entirety, like I did with Hordak. And lastly, always try to use joints cast in the color you want them to be in the finished product. In Randor's case, his shoulders were going to be red, so I needed to track down a good, muscular, red superhero figure. I ended up with a DCUC Orion, which was doubly useful thanks to the blue boots, the same shade as Randor's shoes.
I removed the statue's head, arms and entire lower body. I hollowed out the shoulders and the waist armor. I took the hands from the original arms (complete with bracers) and replaced the hands on the Orion arms, then resculpted the tunic sleeves below the shoulders and attached the arms and head to the statue body.
The legs were a more challenging matter. Randor's left leg was easy enough, I just had to sculpt a fur cuff around the top of the boot. His right leg was more problematic, since the king suffers from an old knee injury and is thus forced to wear a complex mechanical leg brace. I carefully cut the brace off the statue's leg, hollowed it out, split it in two, and spliced it onto the Orion leg. It wasn't a perfect fit (the brace knee joint is a little lower than the left leg knee), but it's fully functional and it looks awesome. As for the skirt, I fashioned a new one out of craft foam sheeting, carefully cutting the zig-zag trim pattern into the bottom edge without cutting all the way through. Minor touch-up sculpting and a full paint job, and He-Man's dad is complete!
King Randor has four accessories:
1 Sword - came with the statue, full repaint
1 Scepter - came with the 2002 Prince Adam, full repaint
1 Shield - melted by a vial of acid thrown by his brother Keldor, deflected onto Keldor's own face, turning him into Skeletor! The shield came with the statue and connected via a LONG peg sticking off Randor's bracelet. I he looked silly with a foot-long rod jutting out of his arm, so I replaced it with a small Lego stud. Now it looks like a large gem on his wrist.
1 cape - made from a ML Moon Knight cloak, removed the hood, filled in the back peg-hole, and painted the outside blue. Many thanks to GOLIATH_CUSTOMS for the piece!
One more figure until I complete the whole Eternian Royal Family! Queen Marlena may just be my next project!
By the power of Grayskull!