Fruit of the Loom had Master of the universe in their Funpals line for kids
As easy as it is to find out the most obscure info these days with the click of a mouse, I honestly feel there is nothing to this He-Man. If it was a real promo, there'd be something out there that proves it other than the various "my neighbor's friend's cousin knew a guy who knew a guy" stories. Whatever the few brown haired He-Mans out there that aren't customs are, I don't think they were ever released in an official capacity. It's a toy, not the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Strictly in my opinion, though.
Last edited by Mr. Shokoti; January 23, 2012 at 09:57pm.
LONG LIVE LOU SCHEIMER!!!
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I was reading back a few pages and someone mentioned all but one WBHM was found in the Western US. Make that two; I found mine in California a few years back: http://toyriffic.blogspot.com/2008/0...ad-he-man.html
I know the one I owned was an authentic Mattel produced toy from the early 1980s. I found him in a box of MOTU being sold at a flea market. He was clearly played with, not customized, had sharpie on his gauntlets and initials that a kid would have added (like Andy in Toy Story) and had sat in the bottom of a box along with a bunch of other forgotten-about MOTU toys for decades before someone decided to clear their garage and get rid of them.
Did you guys see ebay item 200713762362? Another one from the north east! The lot comes with the complete Man-E-Weapons set, but it's not advertised on the Man-E-Faces card that is included. I wonder if this Savage He-Man came with all five weapons..
not a bad price for a somewhat instant collection. didn't really check to see if most of the figs were complete though.
I just got my hands on this today. And according to the AFA Population report (which isn't exactly accurate at times), it's the only AFA 90 in the world.
MY Collection: (some of it)
My belief is:
It was a production error that somebody either working in the factory or an outsider got their hands on and they circulated. Maybe salvaged them out of the trash.
I lived in Brooklyn, New York in the 1980s. My best friend was very mischievous and sometimes stretched the truth. He made a bet with me that his neighbor Andy had three of He-Man's brothers, and that I should make a bet with him. I tried explaining to him that the figures were probably Asian fakes, so it was an easy bet for me to make.
We went over Andy's house: and there were THREE of the brown haired figures. Andy and my friend called then He-Bro and some other cheesy names. My buddy challenged me to debunk them. Well, to me the Taiwan stamp was proof that they were bootlegs. Andy and Jared (my friend) created some story, but I wasn't prone to believing them, so I don't recall what it was, especially since they claimed the figures were official and will be released soon. Andy was a Toys R Us freak and had EVERYTHING from Hasbro and Mattel's MOTU.
I do recall the weapons being all wrong, and I do recall three bags and no real packaging.
Andy let me play with the three "brothers" for 5 days. Had a great time. Made one King Randor, one an evil version of He-Man, and one his actual long lost twin.
Do not recall Zodac armor.
If you want to try and contact Andy, you'd have to find my old buddy Jared (We weren't friends at the end, so I would never initiate). If you want to be a private eye detective, his name is Jared Heath Katcher, around 35 years old. He currently lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He would know who Andy is, and Andy could tell you where he got the three variants.
Last edited by Yin Chan Vo; April 27, 2012 at 08:54am.
Do you recall what year it was?
Well I finally read all of this thread, took me three days. The beard stubble is long and the odor is ripe. I was nearly a cripple when I got out of the chair. Survived on a package of slim-jims a handful of chips, and a few cokes.
My twin brother Amra (name used on this site and on the Conan forums) posted here awhile back and I was mildly curious. As kids we owned nearly all of the Masters of the Universe line of figures, playsets and vehicles. We discussed the wonder bread/savage He-man mystery at length. I believe I recall seeing brown haired He-man's in toy collections as a kid. I never owned one though and I don't recall black belt or boots specifically however. At the time I remember thinking they were just fakes or bootleg He-Man ripoffs or whatever, that is how I remember seeing them in the first place. My twin brother disagrees just as adamantly that we saw no such thing as kids. So much for memory reliability.
That is the main issue of the problem: Lots of people seem to remember this or that but there doesn't seem to be concrete evidence/proof of them surfacing in the early 80's at all. Not one photo with a kid holding one up in the 80's seems extremely hard to believe considering I held up all my Christmas/Birthday toys for pictures every year. however, a few Savage He-Man toys do seem to be legit. Where/when did they come from? That is the mystery.
Rumor control here are the facts:
1. Several alternate colored He-Man figures (Brown hair and waist, Black belt and boots) have surfaced and appear to be legitimately manufactured by Mattel. They have good quality detail which would suggest coming from the molds early rather than late in the production run of figures and could not be from after the molds had been sold to south America to make to Fuerza T toy line with their many strange color variants of the Masters of the Universe line. The waist piece is molded in Brown and several figures appear to have a blank spot between the belt and fur detail. the hair is factory painted a different brown than the waist piece. The figures have no neck pin and a soft head type. there is often a noticeable separation gap at the neck line. Taiwan 1981 is mold stamped on the back. they seem to have only been available in the United States and most that have been found are in the North-East area of the Country.
2. Some have been bought or found in collections of toys that supposedly came from attics/basements or whatever that date from the early 80's.
3. Wonder bread has no records of any such figure or promotion, and the only connection at all to that company was an offer for He-Man trading cards. That much has been verified by many inside the company and out. There is no company paper record reference to the mysterious figure at all. The "wonder-Bread" He-Man origin and name is a myth and should not be used to keep that urban legend from spreading. Toy Collectors and fans dubbed the color variant "Savage He-Man" due to the fact that he most likely came top bare and in reference to He-Man's canon origin from a tribe of savages in the early comics.
4. Nestle had an offer for He-Man figures during the mid 80's but no tie in with Savage He-Man has ever been confirmed, All toys from that promotion that have been confirmed turned out to be standard figures from the Mattel line.
5. Other promotions, in store give-aways, and mail-in offers have been speculated as the origin of the Savage He-Man figure but none have ever been conclusively tied to the mysterious figure. A 3 for 1 coupon proof of purchase mail in offer that came in a tape sealed bag with a savage He-Man that was purchased on E-Bay has never been proved to be the original offer that savage He-Man was obtained by and all efforts to verify what figure actually came with this offer have not been successful. Most likely they were overstock of traditional figures. The Coupon is a valid Mattel offer and the P.O. Box listed on the back is a West Coast mail box that is used by Mattel. No association with the color variant He-Man and the coupon can be confirmed except the E-Bay purchase (which obviously was not the original outlet for the figure but a secondhand sell.)
6. The color variant figure was not mentioned in published toy collections or collecting until the mid 1990's.
7. No original packaging or weapons or armor have ever been verified for the mysterious figure. Despite claims for black Zodiac armor and maroon weapons in a tape sealed bag, all that information came from one E-Bay purchase that most likely was not the original packaging or weapons assortment. What weapons and armor (If any) and what color they might have been molded in is a mystery. It is unknown how the figures might have been originally packaged. The maroon colored castle Greyskull type weapons have been verified to come with the "Man-E-Weapons" Variant of Man-E-Faces and have never been confirmed in any other product. the black Zodiac armor has been verified to come in the extra weapons assortment pack and has not been confirmed with any other product. Even if the figure did come in a plastic bag and had weapons, it has never been confirmed.
8. Mattel has no records of this figure or production numbers, factory data,shipping records, distribution or other info on their release and did their own investigation into the matter and could find no evidence.
9.Several home-made imitations, kit-bashes or "custom" figures of the Savage He-man color variant have been made due the to high prices that they can fetch in auction. Many fakes flood the market to fool the unwary.
10.Mattel, intrigued by the mystery, released a Wun-Dar the savage He-man figure in the Masters of the Universe Classics toy line Feb.15 2010 for Club Eternia members. He even came with a loaf of bread even though the Wonderbread promotion origin hypothesis has never been proved or supported by any evidence.
11. Although Mattel originally had an option deal to do Conan toys and the Conan the Barbarian movie starring Arnold Swartzenegger was popular at the time, that did not work out and Mattel opted to do their own fantasy toy line instead of Conan toys and Savage He-Man is not an early prototype Conan toy. Conan actually has black hair even though in the movie Arnold had brown hair. Several people have claimed similarities to Arnold's muscular build and the He-Man action figure as well.The original prototype drawings and clay mockups of He-man all had He-man established as having blonde hair even before the first toy was ever released. No early color variants were ever released or tested. CPI or the owners of the Conan trademark did bring a lawsuit against Mattel saying that the He-Man toy was based off their character in violation of trademark, but this lawsuit happened after the Masters of the Universe toy line had been in production for some time. If the brown haired variant had been available it most certainly would have been used in the trial as evidence. Mattel returned all Conan related material to the owners before production of the Masters of the Universe line ever began. The standard dark-haired, bare chested, sword swinging fur shorts barbarian can be attributed to Frank Frazetta's drawings for the Lancer and Ace Conan novels. This well known image has become stereotyped and is used across the entire sword and sorcery and fantasy genres.
I could swear I saw black-haired he-man's at retail. The store was called Shelby's, located in Broadway, NJ. It was the only store in town that carried them. I got a lot of great figs there. I do think he was wearing black Zodac armor.
I did not initially buy one because characters like Jitsu and Sy-klone were also brand new and were, frankly, far more exciting than a he-man figure with black hair. I do think I eventually got one (possibly from a relative), but I do not think it was from a mail order.
Of course, my memory isn't reliable, but I'll keep probling just the same
"The better you get at this job, the more dangerous it becomes."
1. Savage He-Man is a Conan toy that had to be pulled or didn't get released due to the lawsuit over copyright infringement with Conan. Savage He-Man is a prototype Conan toy.
FALSE. The original Masters of the Universe toy figures were released in 1982 and are mold stamped 1981 before the Conan the Barbarian movie came out May 1982 and concept He-Man drawings and prototypes date well before the movie and never show the brown haired version in question. The fictional character Conan actually has black hair and any stolen Conan reference or imitation or copyright infringement would show black hair rather than brown as it was not known That Arnold Schwarzenegger's hair was going to be brown in the movie until after it was released.
2. Wonderbread gave out the Savage He-Man figure in an offer based on a coupon on bread wrappers.
FALSE. No offer was ever made by Wonderbread for any He-Man product except for trading cards that were obtained in exactly the manner described with a mail in offer from bread wrappers. Pictures of the bread wrapper offer and company documents from both Mattel and Wonderbread show that the trading cards was the only He-Man offer. Mattel and Wonderbread have both been approached many times and internal company investigations show now evidence for this origin.
Reasonable Origin Hypotheses:
1. A color variant mistake at the factory was allowed to run for an unknown number of figures or after hours "bootleg" figures were made at the factory illegitimately by factory employees. Possibly a factory employee product give away could be responsible, but the toys would have surfaced in Asia instead of the United States. It is unknown why or how the variant product reached consumers rather than be destroyed. The variant figures could have been shipped through the regular distribution channels unmarked, although that seems unlikely as carded color variants would be immediately discovered and recorded by collectors. A carded color variant figure has never surfaced.
2. Color variants were smuggled out to the United States for sale on the secondary black market or legitimately dumped at wholesale secondary toy distributors or Toy closeouts. Several color variant toys were supposedly found sealed in plastic bags on the secondary market for discount sale at toy outlets or "dollar" stores. Cardboard boxes have also been reported. No factory sealed bag has ever been verified and it is unknown if they ever were available in this manner.
3. Mail Away offer, in-store offer, store promotion, catalog offer or in-store give aways have all been offered as possible origins of the Savage He-Man figure. To date no store advertisement, coupon, mail in offer, catalog page etc. has ever surfaced to support any of these theories.
4.Elaborate hoax by a well crafted series of bootleg figures by persons responsible unknown. Because the color variant have not been proven to exist before the 1990's it is possible that all in circulation are frauds and were never manufactured by Mattel.
Was is needed to conclusively prove any of these theories is:
1. A reliably dated photo from early 1980's clearly showing the color variant in question. We need proof that they even were available in the time period in question. Given the numerous claims that people had them as kids this is the most probable solution to the mystery we just need a good childhood photo.
2. An advertizement or store offer, coupon etc. that can be authenticated and dated, and convincingly tied to the Savage He-Man figure. If this figure was the result of a legitimate offer then some sort of concrete evidence must be out there.
3. An official factory product description or figure reference to the color variant from either Mattel , the distributors, or the factory that produced the figures that can be authenticated and dated. As it was more than 20 years ago and numerous attempts to locate any such documentation have failed by company employees means it either no longer exists, never existed or has to date eluded searches. this is the least probable solution.
4. A authentic figure in the original sealed packaging that can be traced to its original purchase or point of distribution or manufacture. It is increasingly unlikely that this will ever happen as time goes by but who knows maybe some crate in a warehouse can solve the mystery.
No amount of second hand information or eyewitness testimony will conclusively prove the origins of this figure. Despite many claimed memories nothing has solved the mystery. No amount of childhood recollection, dusty finds at yard sales or attics, or purchase stories are independently verifiable therefore, cannot be used as proof. Until we get some kind of real proof (pictures or official company involved documentation) that the figures were available in the early 80'sand were made by Mattel the Savage He-Man color variant will remain an enigma.
Yeah, it wouldn't prove a thing, but... boy, if I could remember his name would I be happy
I'd settle for just being sure that I actually had him. Even that's foggy. I think I got him late (when I was losing interest). Unfortunately, my mom gave all my figs away. So there's no way for me to even verify that I had one, much less where I got it from.
The problem here is he is just a repaint. He's generic. If he was a more unique character, (ie. two-bad) you better believe I would remember with certainty whether I did or did not have him
Last edited by Phil.Pastel; May 12, 2012 at 11:36pm.
"The better you get at this job, the more dangerous it becomes."
Several people have claimed to have owned one as a kid (or even own their old one still!) And several more people have claimed to know the origin of the figure by some mail away, Contest prize, store give away or even live He-Man show give out but no one has ever supplied convincing proof of any of their claims. I thought I remembered seeing brown haired variant back then for sure but I know full well how memories can be colored, suggested or falsified. I even doubt my own memories. I certainly will doubt others claims. We just need one clear photo that can be reliable dated to solve this. I can tell you I remember my first He-Man action figure ever I was 5 or possibly 4 years old and I and my twin brother received figures in our Easter Baskets. I got Stratos and my brother had Skeletor. Now I know for sure that 30 years has not clouded that memory because I have photographic proof.
Well, I wasn't that young. I was about 13. The problem is this is a generic memory. It's not something that would stick out in your mind. There were many variations of He-man (ie. Faker, he-man, ba he-man, etc.) So this would have been just one more version thrown into the pile. And he is less unique than the other repaints. He's not impressive.
If something does not impress you, you likely won't remember it with the same level of clarity. I still wonder (pardon the pun) whether I did or did not have Rio Blast. I think I had him. The reason I don't know for sure is due to the fact that I didn't like him. I still don't like him now. If I had him, I never, ever played with him. I only played with figures I liked. I had a large box full of action figures (mostly he-man and star wars). Anybody I didn't like just sat in the box, and never saw any action.
I actually think that I did not like him because of his hair. He-man was always blonde. Along comes this he-man with dark hair. What? Why play with him when you could play with the better versions (ie. he-man or ba he-man)? There's no doubt that he would have sat in the box and never saw any action, just like Rio Blast never saw any
Last edited by Phil.Pastel; May 13, 2012 at 12:23am.
"The better you get at this job, the more dangerous it becomes."
It's legit all right.....I still remember when I went to some kids house in mid 80s , he was the only kid I knew who had it and it was def not a custom......factory painted.
I remember once at the toy store when they gave away small dinosaurs , I got a pteradactyl......it's plausible it was a give away.
There could very well be pix of these from the 80s (x-mas/birthday parties etc) , regular people might not be as observant though
Last edited by Wonder Bread He-Man; May 13, 2012 at 08:27am.
Don't you have better thing to do than read this stupid signature
Tony Clifton : Kaufman was a hack....hack sack pack nack !
These days, I'm leaning to the in-store promotional item for Savage He-man. Still, having some sort of proof would be nice!
In a way, it'll be very sad if this mystery is ever solved.
Has anyone ever checked into the idea that it was started by the Children's Palace store chains in the Midwest? I know for certain in 86 that there was a promotion in-store for spending over a certain amount on He-Man merchandise that landed you one of them. I can even further point to the store location in Westland, Michigan, as being the store I saw it in as a kid. I already tried to track down some people a couple of years about this but it was for naught- perhaps someone else would have better luck?
If it helps when I got my savage he-man as a kid (from a thrift store), the only two toy store s anywhere near my town in Ohio were Children's Palace and Toys R Us.
It was around 1990 or 1991... I remember wondering why it had brown hair, but figured it went with the motu toyline so I asked my mom to buy it for me. It was $.25 and mint condition... I still have the figure!