Hey fans! Back again with another MOTU Hybrid custom. Today's figure is a minor-league character gone pro, a lame one-off villain turned hero in the original Filmation cartoon, the character was upgraded to major plot device in the more recent 2002 series and the modern MOTU Classics line. No longer just a random forest rogue, he became a former champion of the Eternian royal family, and was eventually revealed to be Man-at-Arms' brother and Teela's biological father! Submitted for your approval, the wandering warrior with the weird name . . . Fisto!
Yeah, apparently Mattel didn't have a firm grasp of "unfortunate innuendo" back in the '80s.
MOVING ON! So, 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. Fisto here represents a shift back to my traditional process from my recent streak of more complex works. Neither a statue like Randor and Clawful, nor a complete re-sculpt like his counterpart Jitsu, Fisto is a throwback to the original MOTU Hybrids, a basic Mattel 2002 figure with spliced-in joints to make a fully poseable new toy.
Fisto was fairly simple, though he did pose a few challenges. For starters, his hips had to be replaced. Most of the 2002 MOTU figures have fully functional 2-way T-hips, allowing full forward-backward and split movement. However, for some reason, Fisto's hips were built much tighter than normal, and using more brittle plastic for the central pins. As a result, they snapped right off during an early range-of-motion test. Fortunately, I had some appropriately flesh-colored ball shoulders (from a ML Wolverine, I believe), so I just replaced the broken hips, thus repairing the damage and adding the necessary thigh rotation in the process.
Also, instead of having separate bicep rotation and elbow hinge joints, I combined them as a single hinge/rotate combo joint at the elbow. I only did this for the left arm, as the right already had a rotate joint in the elbow, and attempting to add a hinge would have been futile since the large metal fist would have impeded any poseability I might have added.
Everything else was pretty standard. The figure now has joints in the knees, shins, and ankles. I'm particularly pleased with the ankles, with the sculpted fur concealing most of the joint. The figure also maintains his fist-launching action feature, though the catch is a little loose so his fist keeps popping out of place at the slightest nudge. At some point, I may have to open up his hand and fix that, but for now he'll do.
The color scheme of both the Filmation show and the 2002 cartoon, as well as all figures of the character, are pretty much the same. And honestly, I find them all appallingly boring. Just silver and purple. Normally I defer to the Filmation design, but this time around, I went with NONE of the above, and instead used a color palette from the 2002 COMIC. Just a little blue and gold makes ALL the difference! A little black wash on the right hand to make the mechanics pop, and Fisto was ready for action!
. . . Yeah, there's no way to make that sentence sound appropriate.
Fisto has just one accessory, his UNGODLY MASSIVE SWORD! I'm pretty sure that's the official name of it. You'd think a guy with a battering ram for an arm wouldn't need any more weapons, but you'd be wrong! Fun story with the sword, it only appeared in the comic, and it was SUPPOSED to be released with the figure. And yet, when the toy hit shelves, it was packaged with . . . some kind of golden claw weapon. It SHOULD have had a sword. Trade shows DISPLAYED the figure with a sword. Heck, the figure came with a strap on its back that could ONLY fit a massive spatula blade, and NOT the silly claw that he ended up with. When people asked Mattel WHY they left the sword out of the final product, the response was a resounding, "Well, because SHUT UP, THAT'S WHY!" And they wonder why there's so much fan backlash towards their PR and customer service departments . . . . Anyway, to rectify this little oversight, I took the sword from a Marvel Legends Ares and re-sculpted it into Fisto's off-hand weapon. Note the pommel at the end of the handle . . . yes, that is indeed a tiny little fist, and yes, that is how the sword is supposed to be. Tacky, yet still awesome.
Like a lot of the Masters of the Universe (particularly Stratos and Jitsu), I initially thought this guy was just a bland C-lister with a stupid name, but after working on this figure, I find I have a fondness for the design and the character. This is largely thanks to the fine work of the Four Horsemen redesign team, and the writing of the 2002 cartoon that brought the character to the forefront in a small but important role. It's little surprises like Fisto that keep me working on this series!
I just wish they could have found a way to make Mekaneck cool. MAN, do I hate that character . . . .
By the power of Grayskull!