Jul 6, 2013

Nepthu: King of the T.U.R.D.s!!

Before any of the 5 Nepthu fans start complaining about Nepthu being a T.U.R.D. (a convenient acronym that stands for Totally Un-Requested Dude) hear me out:
He is a low-tier Filmation Character who showed up once and was "Killed" in the same episode.

For those of you who lack knowledge on the Filmation Cartoon: He appears on the Episode: The Temple of the Sun.

Recently, Scott "The Toy Guru" (As fans like to call him... and has nothing to do with that being the self-proclaimed title he used as his username in various toy forums.) Neitlich has made some Defensive posts regarding the T.U.R.D.s... In this case Plundor and Nepthu.

A forum user asked "Matty" about the rumors about Plundor, Nepthu and a Stan Lee Based MOTUC Figure that... Yes I did mention a MOTU Figure based on Stan Lee... Rumors call it Standor or Stand-Or... but picturing Stan Lee's head on a roided out MOTUC Body is crazy! OK so user asks Mattel about these Totally Un-requested Dudes  and this is what Neitlich said:

Trying my best to nip this in the bud:

First off fan generated Rumors are just that. We will confirm all the upcoming figures at Mattypalooza on July 19 at 11:00 in room 25abc. Anything you hear before hand are just rumors and that is that.

To answer your too question, as we have stated quite a lot, stating in 2014 we are focusing on a list characters as finishing the vintage MOTU and POP lines (vintage NA may come up short on those tail end characters). 2013 (including the Filmation sub and non sub items like "Granamyr" or "Strobo") were all planned before the 2 year wrap up rework. This is why you still see some more out there obscure characters in 2013 like the FFM.

The focus on a listers and the "rework" kicks in at Jan 2014. 2013 was still designed under the previous "abundance of characters spreading out the a listers for line longevity" plan that was started in 2009. Starting in Jan 2014 the line switched to the new "2 year wrap up" plan.

Hope this helps!

And PS: why all of this sudden hate on Nephtu and Plundor? I am NOT confirming or denying upcoming figs for anyone. But man, these guys are just getting tossed under the bus? I can't agree that these are d list unrequested characters. Again, I am not confirming here, but I think it is pretty factual that Nephtu and Plundor do come up a ton on the boards. Seeing them suddenly become d listers is a little odd. (Please don't read into this last part, just stating an observation as a fan myself, not a hint as a brand manager).


Here's the thing: The Reworking Explanation kinda clashes with the "Sudden Reworking" that they had to do for 2012 when This became available:

Horde Prime was the 2012 Exclusive and he was made a normal Figure. One 2012 figure was pushed back and a 200X Figure was pushed back as well to make room for Eternos Palace Randor, According to The Toy Guru...

So, they were able to do it back then but not now?

Now, I must get on the "Sudden hate on Plundor and Nepthu."
First it's not "sudden". Second, it is closely related to the having to re-shift the rosters. I understand the reasoning for Mattel to choose Nepthu and Plundor: Lower amount of new Pieces required.

As seen on the pic on the left that's a depiction of what a MOTUC Nepthu COULD LOOK LIKE while reusing as many Available MOTUC Parts as Possible.
The Head, Torso Armor and Left Bicep are the only new pieces on him.
He'd use the normal He-Man Buck, Vikor's Right Bicep (The new left Bicep should be a mirror image of Vikor's Right Bicep) The Skeletor Loincloth, and Skeletor Shinguards with Stratos' "Sock Feet". His left Hand would be Marzo's so he can hold the Ankh.

For Accessories I would have his Ankh, which I've mentioned a few times and a Crystal Zoar. Preferably a new Sculpt but knowing Mattel, Zoar would be a Clear Plastic version of the Zoar we have.

4 New Pieces if we count the ankh. Compared to other Filmation characters like say, Huntara or Madame Razz. (who would require more new pieces)

Plundor on the other hand, is not a T.U.R.D. He is controversial, but he's been far more requested than Nepthu. Hell! Even Chef Allen, who I think is a total dead end as a toy and canonically speaking; HAS a  moderate Fanbase. The thing with Plundor is that he's a polarizing figure. Some people love him, others hate him. It's weird to find anyone who isn't on one of those sides.
Plundor: Making He-Man into Captain Planet BEFORE
there WAS a Captain Planet!!

The thing about Mr. Pink Bunny here is that he's pretty easy to make. All we need is a new head and accessories. Here's what a MOTUC Plundor COULD LOOK LIKE while reusing as many parts as possible.
The Buck would be the Beastman Buck, cause he's a rabbit and rabbits are furry.
Rough idea on what a classicized Plundor could look like.

For his Armor, the obvious piece that we already have that resembles it is from Tri-Klops. The Standard Furry Loincloth could be used, or reuse the one from Bow, Flipshot or Kobra Khan to be "different". The boots scream He-Ro while the forearms could be Stinkor's with the normal gloved hands. (Some pics have 4 fingers on him while others have 5)... so, Plundor is just a new head on a bunch of reused parts. Pretty easy for Mattel to make.

Aside the possibility that "Somebody at Mattel" is heavily interested in these two, the fact that they would require a small amount of new pieces is something that we should take into consideration.

Now where was I? Oh yeah! The hate on them... Plundor has always been controversial and he's a Low tier C to High tier C-Minus Filmation character... Nepthu has been a Filmation Z-Lister forever. The few mentions he's had involved mostly his Sand Demons (which are yellow repaints of the Filmation Rock Creatures) and how these Demons are far more desirable than Nepthu Himself.

Now the Reason why these two: Plundor and Nepthu are gathering so much hate is precisely BECAUSE of the current state of the line. If Classics ends and we don't have Glimmer, Hydron, Flogg but we have Plundor and Nepthu... Something's messed up! If classics ends and we don't have KEY Filmation Characters like:

Madame Razz, Montork, Dree-Elle, Scorpia, Skeletor's Hover Robots, Huntara, Melaktha, Masque, Strongarm, Lizard man, Light Hope and Imp but we have Plundor and Nepthu... Something SERIOUSLY *expletive deleted* up! is going on here!

Nepthu is a dead end Canonically speaking. He was a bum, who got this Magic thing (the ankh). He did some magic and captured the Sorceress. (If that last part hadn't happened, He-Man and friends wouldn't have noticed him at all.) He-Man fought him and destroyed his Ankh of power. the bum became a gardener and the ankh was turned into a Water Fountain... Where do we get the way that he can EXPAND the Universe.

Plundor is an interdimensional tyrant who loots planets for profit. He was arrested and forced to help the recovery effort on Gleedal's planet... His power came from technology and greed, so he theoretically could expand the canon by plotting his revenge, perhaps joining the Horde or something crazy like Reaching Eternia while He-Man is in Primus. As much as I don't like Plundor, he HAS ways to expand the Canon.

Problem is that it FEELS like there's no rhyme or reason for some of these choices. Nepthu is an example of that. With all the far more important Filmation characters that have not been made while having limited spots; putting Nepthu in is a stupid idea!

Neitlich himself made a post on He-Man.org 4 years ago requesting the most popular Filmation characters... Want to know who won after 4 years of people posting on that topic?
Nepthu with 5 votes in 4 years! vs the crappy 112 votes that Scorpia Received. Plundor on the other hand got 30 votes. That's 6 times as Nepthu... In a way, Plundor is far more desired than Nepthu.

What bugs me is that like I said, Limited spots. We were told that they would do about Twenty or so filmation characters. Apparently it's something to do with a limited time frame to use the Filmation characters. Shadow Weaver, Octavia, Batros, Icer, Fang Man and Shokoti have been good choices. I may not like all of these characters (Fang Man, Icer and Batros) THAT Much, but I see their potential. Something I don't see in guys like Nepthu or Chef Allen.

a Follow-up question to Toyguru was made on Matty regarding the Plundor/Nepthu D-List status. Here's what Scott Toyguru Neitlich replied:

And remember that the entire 2013 line, including the Filmation sub, was created under the older "spread characters out" rule. It is safe to assume that there will be more obscure characters shown for the remaining 2013 reveals all around (potentially any sub or non sub slot).

The revised "make every slot count and focus on a listers" strategy starts with the 2014 slots. At Sdcc we be revealing approx Oct 2013 - March 2014 which includes skus designed under both strategies. Once we get through the remaining 2013 slots we are full speed ahead on a list characters (give or take one fan's opinion over the next, there will still be some surprises!)
Hope that helps manage expectations and gear everyone to put rumor aside. I can tell you the "6 months" we are showing at Sdcc is the strongest 6 month gap I think the line has ever had. Head out to Mattypalooza, well worth the price of admission!

And PS: I totally disagree. There are a lot of Filmation characters that get that one hit wonder status in polls. But (again not a hint, just my own observations as a fan) Plundor and Nepthu are both characters I would put into the same bucket or tier as Huntara and Masque. Maybe I'd call them "tier2 Filmation" (with Madam Raz and Shadow Weaver in tier 1, and Chief Alan in tier 3). The Filmation sub was always a mix of tier 1 and 2 in order to not blown through all the tier 1 characters too quickly (again because the Filmation Sub as part of 2013 was layed out under the older "spread the characters out to maximize the length of the line" strategy.
I could understand some fans disagreeing on my comparison of Plundor to Huntara, but honestly, really taking a step back I think they are around the same level of demand (and I'm sure the polls are starting now to prove one way or another).

While he's using Plundor as the figure chosen for his defense, he placed Nepthu in the same tier... Also, I love how he has 3 tiers so he can slide crappy characters into tier 2. Using the character popularity post started by him on He-Man.org, here's the difference between Tier 2 and Tier 3:
1 single vote... Seriously, Nepthu got 5 votes and he's tier 2 to him while Chef Allen got 4 votes.

Isn't it strange how much he's going out of his way to Justify Plundor and Nepthu? It's almost as if they ARE COMING and he's trying to do damage control!

He-Man.org is doing a poll on the top twenty Filmation characters after they asked their forum users to pick their twenty. These were the twenty most popular characters that you could have voted for. (Results will be posted later today)

Sea Hawk
Madame Razz (with Broom)
Dree Ellle
Robot Knights
King Miro
Hunga the Harpy
General Sunder
Twiggets (Sprag, Sprocker, Spritina)
Lizaard Man
Uncle Montork
General Tataran

Notice who is missing here? I'll give you a hint: He's a T.U.R.D. and his name starts with N and ends with epthu...

There's also this curious Ask Matty Post... I'm not sure if this user HAS Nepthu pics or if this is a trick to bait Toyguru into answering. I wonder how long it will last until it's deleted...

So, signs point that Nepthu is not popular. He's pretty much a Totally Un-Requested Dude and he's coming because Somebody at Mattel wants him. Toyguru can deny his coming as much as he likes, but with each denial, he's telling a different tale...

The best thing about this is:
If I'm right, I win, cause I've been saying that he is coming.
If I'm wrong and he isn't shown at SDCC, I still win because Nepthu wouldn't be coming!!
The He-Man.org Results are in!!

I am bummed that Melaktha was dead last... (I have a soft spot for the grumpy archaeologist) but Plundor only beat Melaktha and the Twiggets...


  1. these lame-o characters would have been a good way to maximize profits a few years back instead of losers like snake man-at-arms & variants like "little john" randor. but at this stage giving us dead characters instead of requested ones makes no sense.

    really why does he even want these guys??

    1. I have NO Idea... I mean, If the line wasn't in "grave danger" as he put it, I wouldn't complain much. His excessive defense of Nepthu feels ill timed when he revealed the Masque vs Huntara Poll.