As I mentioned in my last post, a website featuring art inspired by He-Man and the Masters of the Universe has got me thinking about one of my favourite childhood toys, and, in retrospect about some of the really dumb characters that were created. Some, like Stinkor or Man-e-Faces had stupid names (and, in the case of Fisto, a name that was probably borderline inappropriate). Others, like Mech-a-Neck had lame powers (okay, you do an ET thing extending your neck... so what? More neck for someone like Beast-Man to go all medieval on). While still others, like Moss-Man and Prince Adam, were insultingly pointless. And that got me thinking... if the crews at Mattel and Filmation were scraping the bottom of the barrel to give kids characters like these, what were some of the ideas that were too bad (I think that was another character's name, wasn't it?) for even them to try and market?
So with that, I give you
The Top 5 Rejected Masters of the Universe Characters:
5) Beach-Man - Not to be confused with Beast-Man, Beach-Man is He-Man's chronically-underemployed cousin who sleeps on The Most Powerful Man in the Universe's couch, spends most of his days surfing and stays up until 4 in the morning in the company of his dealer, Moss-Man, toking-up, eating cheezies and giggling over Captain Caveman reruns. Too undermotivated to be considered a goodguy, he's not much of an enemy either, except to Teela after a drunken evening after a beach volleyball game and apre-party a few summers ago. Powers include spending countless days in the sun without getting burned or skin cancer, ability to hang-ten, run on sand, and chat-up hot chicks engaged in topless sunbathing. Accessories: surfboard & coconut bong. Rejected for potentially infringing on copyrights for Captain California character from Hero High.
4) Odd-i-Tor - Included in this list to represent the few MOTU characters who don't fit into the "-Man" name scheme, Odd-i-Tor is a powerful force unto himself, aligned neither with He-Man nor Skeletor. This character was originally employed by the King of Eternia to monitor government spending until he fell out of favour for publicly exposing a fraudulent expense account scandal within the royal family. Skeletor briefly flirted with the notion of recruiting Odd-i-Tor for his own diabolical plans, until the fearless accountant informed the skull-faced-one's minions about the non-existence of a pension plan they'd been promised. Powers: crunches numbers the way Beast-Man crunches skulls, can detect hidden accounts better than the X-ray vision of Triclops can see through walls. Accessories: calculator and conservative business suit. Rejected for being just too damn frightening.
3) D-Livery-Man - A young Eternian fast-food delivery driver who used to make a lot of runs to Snake Mountain (Skeletor's lands are in ruins, after all, so there's not a lot in the way of food production going on there - consequently, he and his minions live on takeout) until one day he took longer than 30 minutes to get there and had to give up the food for free. Thereafter, D-Livery-Man joined He-Man in his battle against evil. Powers: generally reliably fast delivery of fast food & ability to pull in good money claiming he doesn't have any change, thereby requiring the fortress-owner to give a larger tip than originally intended. Accessories: 1993 Honda Civic hatchback with cow-print seat covers, warming bag, cell phone. Rejected because series writers didn't want to be reminded that the character would probably make more money than them.
2) I-Scream-Man - A truly devious villain, I-Scream-Man pretends to offer the solace of cool, soothing treats on hot days, until his victims take a bite from their purchases. Powers: causing crippling brain-freeze in those who eat his ice cream treats, allowing him to incapacitate them at his leisure. Accessories: ice cream truck, assorted frozen treats. Rejected because hearing the simulated musicbox tunes blasting from the ice cream truck every episode would drive the audience insane, thereby preventing them from buying the franchise toys.
1) Peaceful-Diplomatic-Resolution-and-Fair-Financial-Compensation-Man - A former independant labour dispute mediator, this character was eventually hired on contract to negotiate an end to the long war between Skeletor and He-Man that had devastated the face of Eternia. Powers: firm but non-threatening demeanor, ability to discern the true wants and goals and limits of both sides in a dispute. Accessories: endless supply of mediocre coffee. Rejected for having the ability to put an end to the conflict that is the entire reason for the existence of the toy line and cartoon.