What makes it worth it for you?
Toyguru, I want to start off by thanking you for all the hard work you put into the toy lines to try to satisfay us, the fans. I am constantly amazed by how much"after-hours" work you spend answering the questions here on the forum (as a frequent after-hours worker myself, I'm always cognizant of the timestamp on your replies here and on he-man.org).
My question is sort of two-fold. First, specifically around MOTUC, but also around any lines you manage, as a fan are you completely satisfied with the product being put out; for example, is there anything that has come out where you wish the sculpt had been a little different or that the accessories had been more varied?
The second part of the question is does the (somewhat-less vocal) positive feedback from fans make your job worthwhile when balanced against the (quite vocal, and sometimes juvenile) negative feedback from fans... I mean, things like seeing the same question come across your desk every other day ("when will this figure come out" or "you said character x is a possibility but didn't mention character y, so are they possible too") or seeing some of the things you said "thrown back at you" (like some fans calling the paint job on the weapons in the weapons rack too "hyper detailed" to nitpick at what they feel is the lack of detail in the MOTUC line), it has to get old, right? Does one relatively quiet positive voice outweigh 2 or 3 relatively noisy negative voices?
Anyway, I just want to again thank you for all the work you do in delivering these toy lines to us, the fans, and striving to get us the best product you can.
Things that "bother" me the most tend to be the same things that bother fans. It drives me nuts that Roboto has reversed shoulders. That some Martian Manhunters had the wrong arms. As a fan I want figures to be perfect and as a Mattel manager it is very hard seeing product my team works on come out incorrect.
Working at Mattel has absolutely opened my eyes to the thousands of factors affecting production that the public just does not see. The number of things we catch and correct are just so much higher then the mistakers, but sometimes not everything works perfect. And fans only see the mistakes. We don't get credit for the things fans don't see that were fixed.
As for negative feedback online, as a collector as well, I totally understand where they are coming from. I never take it personally mostly because as a fan, I feel the very same way when a toy I want is not correct or as I invisioned it.
The most rewarding thing though is getting to collect toys I work on and helping contribute creatively to the process. It is also hugely rewarding every time we reveal new product and to hear how excited it makes people feel. It makes the long hours worth it. I seriously wonder how someone without a huge amount of passion for what they do could work on collector lines like this!