When I got this idea, I had to draw it immediately, because it fits so well. The famous and beautiful Russian dolls are a great way to display all three faces of Man-E-Faces. His strange helmet has just the right voluminous shape to make him a doll. Let’s hope for him that the human part is the biggest one! MOTU’s Man-E-Faces as Russian dolls.
This project was a good chance to use some tools. I used the symmetry tool from Sketchbook. The line prediction caused some effect I think is beneficial, it simply rounded the corners. I also finally learned to copy and paste objects. It’s a while ago that I drew it, but it will always be one of my favourite drawings.
This fight must have been setup based upon characteristics, but who knows…
Two squeezing arms vs a powerful trunk call for a big wrapping fight, doesn’t it? One of the smartest and heaviest heroic warriors, who knows how to make use of his dimensions, meets the fast and smart constrictor. Squeeze is 40cm shorter, and not less than 110kg lighter than the elephant man. Snoutspout though is not a warrior, under the line we have 28 points for him. Two more for the Snakeman, what is also not too much. Look at the table of skills for all properties of these two.
Clear the ring! No wonder that Snoutspout waits for the smaller Snakeman to attack. He is far to slow for a surprising attack. Not long to wait, a hissing sound pierce marrow and bone. An awfully fast move of Squeeze’s followed, with his left arm wrapping around the elephant-man’s trunk.
Let’s not forget, this is his nose, so he is not able to breathe properly now! How will he counter? How will the kind elephant react to the snake attack?! In a smart way of course! Obviously he is able to hold the breath for quite a while, so he doesn’t panic. He spreads out both arms, pushing against the snake’s head while he draws his head backwards/ He tries to pull that arm off!!
He even threads his trunk further around the arm, and so tightens the grip, until we all hear a popping sound, saying clearly that arm is dislocated! Suddenly the Snakeman lets go, his left arm is now useless. Though Squeeze looks very much unimpressed. Our orange hero looks very much strained from this apnea action! He breathes heavily. Squeeze seems to change his tactics now, he’s running from one corner to the other. Snoutspout is hardly able to follow with his eyes. In terms of speed we have a four fighting an eight. Then the next attack! The remaining green arm wraps around Snoutspout’s left foot, but the snakeman this time keeps moving, keeps out of reach for the powerful trunk. Elephant-like, Snoutpout stamps on the arm with his free foot, and then starts stumbling. Still holding the foot, Squeeze jumps with both feet first against the left shoulder of the already falling hero.
What does Snoutspout bring up now? His lack of experience in battles in very obvious, and the snakeman managed to locate his shoulder back! Now he is squeezing the trunk with his jaws, while the other arm wraps around the entire body. Squeezes arms are so long!!! This grip will only get tighter, and gravity is not helping our losing elephantastic hero. He can’t get back on his feet, and he is exhausted already. Snakeman wins. Speed wins over strength and brain.
This was a very confusing character to me when I was a child, and it didn’t get better after writing this.
First of all, he wasn’t very present in the cartoon. There is so much info about MOTU out there, that is was easy to find out from this page (amazing!), that he had only two short roles in the cartoon. Also he was never very famous or popular I would say. There are so many more popular figures, that Sy-Klone is just one of the easy to forget ones.
Second: His face and haircut resemble Heman’s a lot. In fact he looks like a wiser, more relaxed 80s version (remember the Jetsons?!) of a future – Heman. This fact was totally ignored in my opinion, it seems almost like the Superman / Clark Kent thing (ok this was recognized by most of us). The name however suggests that he is a clone of someone. As you can read on the linked fandom page, he was considered a cyborg. But the story line wasn’t very straight in the different comics/ cartoon/ books. That is confusing, but also opens the door for your own version, which is great for kids, isn’t it?
Third: His cool sticker shows some kind of universe. But space travels wasn’t a thing in MOTU (BTW the Jetsons were very popular in the 80s). It seemed a bit like a test run whether the customers would ask for more space stuff or not. But was the sticker meant as a screen, or a window to a universe inside him, or just decoration?
Fourth: While I’m writing this, I notice that the name is also very confusing. You’ll find different versions like Cyclone, Sy-Clone, or Syclone. There is a photo of a box on Google with both versions, Sy-Klone and Cy-Klone on it. So maybe there are also regional differences.
Apart from the confusing and weak background story of this figure, this is a cool, high quality toy. I can’t think of any reused parts (except for the face) on other figures. His arms are a little bit like Mantenna’s though… He came with a clip-on shield, that is also unique. It was necessary because of his tiny fists. Sy-Klone is very colorful, in a bright, maybe royal blue, and sun yellow, combined with some wine-red applications. The colors are of very high contrast and exist in almost equal amounts (maybe a bit more blue). IKEA wasn’t that popular these days, so this combination of colors wasn’t prejudiced, though I would say Sy-Klone isn’t exactly beautiful or pleasant to the eye. He is rather flamboyant. The legs got some mold over the years, same as King Randor did.
And there is one coincidence, or maybe a hint from the makers? Other figures with a high amount of royal blue, like Mekaneck, King Randor (the blue cape!), Man-E-Faces, Faker, Two Bad, Dragstor, Roboto have blue combined with red or orange colors. This is much more pleasant than the bright yellow, and obviously very popular amongst MOTU figures. The only other blue – yellow combinations happen on “drums” … Skeletor, and Evil Lyn!!! The standard Skeletor only has the yellow face, but else he is totally blue, same as Evil Lyn. Does this color scheme tell something about the real attitude of the clone Heman space android?! I guess not. Or?
While blue is a standard color for MOTU figures, real yellow is very rarely seen. Buzz Off had to be yellow, sure. Mantenna’s and Mossman’s belt, and even more Panthor’s and Orko’s eyes are really tiny. Heman’s and strangely also Prince Adam’s hair (so similar!) are yellow, but that is it. Merman’s armor is of a greenish yellow. Oh yes, Mekanek’s bumbum weapon is also yellow, but his armor is red, so the contrast is lesser. Not sure why this is the case, in X-men blue and yellow go so well together…
The chest has this 3D like holographic planet-design – which is of good quality and never came off. His wrist can be rotated by a wheel, which works well. His arms have a different joints from the standard figures (and tiny fists!), so that the arms lift up during fast rotation. This means also that he is a bit wobbly, like a doll. This feature is well-made, but also some how isolates him in the MOTU universe. I guess he wasn’t the cheapest in production.
Teela and Beastman meeting in the 1991 Disney version of Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve’s Beauty and the Beast (1756). The viewer takes part in the dancing scene. Beastman holding Beau-Tee’s hands, obviously attending to look at the camera, but then distracted by we-don’t-know-what, gazing to his left. Is this a sign of his bad conscious? Does he feel trapped, maybe even caught in the romantic act with the enemies daughter? His dress is a bit off-shape, for sure Beastman never learned how to take care of a doublet. It is a clear night, we can see many stars shining through the large windows.
Beau-Tee looks like she is fully dissolved in the situation, admiring Beastman’s strength. Her head is half a size too small for her body, and maybe that small head is what explains the situation.
Extendar is a very special figure. To be honest I think he does not really fit into the old toyline. A white knight, half size taller than the rest, with thin extensions and large golden hands. The rubber bands of mine were a bit loose, so he never stood well and his arms used to drop. The foldable red shield didn’t close properly after a while. The golden paint wears off, and the legs are a bit moldy now, so in terms of quality my Extendar is clearly behind others. Oh and I just remember the squeaky sound it makes when you pull the arms.
I guess parents were happy about the design, which is very innocent. I can understand, that a Snakeface or Mantenna is not considered a valuable toy for kids. Extendar does not even carry a sword!
One of the most famous characters has in my opinion one of the lowest quality. But the positive first: From all figures he is the one looking the most alike a soldier, with serious face, and lots of armour (but only on one arm and leg!?). The combination of bright green and orange is a looker, though the belly is free what leaves room for some questions.
He has the full-muscle human body, and I never understood why those would not be as strong as He-Man. I also wondered about so many figures what exactly they are wearing, or whether the skin is supposed to be green? The hands are green as well.
The head is soft and invites you to squeeze it. The printed-on grey helmet wears off from all the squeezing and that leaves you then with a bold looking, naked green hero. Not sure why hardly any vintage figure had a removable helmet.
All the orange parts are made of a too hard plastic, so that after taking it off and putting it back the closing mechanisms wears off. Happened to all 3 parts, plus I lost the bat (OK that is not a quality issue) and if I remember correctly it broke too. He’s also got some mold on his legs. Other figures were of much better quality.
The green shows a nice luminescence in UV light, the orange parts unfortunately not. On the other hand the lack of orange makes him look more serious. The head looks extremely cool, thus this is one of my favourite pictures!