I have been following this thread for years now but recently decided to create an account and post. I am 31 years old from Ohio. I have been a MotU fan my entire life and have collected the toys since I was 3 years old. I have been selling things on ebay since 1998 and have been on the look out for a Wonder Bread He-Man for around 5 years. I have been to flea markets, yard sales, and auctions all throughout Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky. I recently decided to move to Orlando, FL for my job (Verizon). One of my co-workers told me about a huge flea market called FLEA WORLD which is right outside Orlando and we decided to go there one sunday. There were tons of people with various old toys (gi joes, mask, star wars, etc) I eventually found 1 dealer that had some MotU figures. I looked around and noticed he had a Scarglow on his topped shelf marked at $25 which included the accessories. I quickley scooped that figure up for a decent price after some haggling on price. I notice he had some figure down in the bottom portion of the case and then I saw it. a wonder bread/savage He-man. I quickley looked the figure over for all the signs of a fake. I knew what to look for after years of reading through this forum and I believe I finally have my hands on the elusive figure. The pics are of the actually figure that I purchased from the guy. I asked him where he got it at and he said years back he had purchased a huge toy collection of a gentleman and it was part of the collection. The figure itself is beautiful. If anyone has any questions please feel free to ask them.
We may have to face the fact that the origin of this figure may never be revealed. But they sure are fun to collect. All are legit too.
MY Collection: (some of it)
Hi guys, I've recently jumped back into the world of He-Man and I'm starting to re-piece my childhood collection back together. I had one of these brown-haired He-Men as a kid and I think maybe I can add some info (hopefully).
My grandmother in New Jersey gave me my "brownie" (which is what my brother used to call it). We went to visit her in January/February 1986 and she gave it to me then. I don't recall if it came in any packaging or had any weapons or accessories, but I'm positive that it didn't have the black Zodac armor. I'm fairly certain he was "naked."
I don't know how long my grandmother had been holding on to it for me, but it still smelled "new" and was nice and glossy, so I'm pretty sure she couldn't have had him too long before she gave him to me. I don't recall what the country or date stamp said, but I know she couldn't have been holding on to it since 1981. If I had to estimate a time frame, she probably got it in late 1985.
Now this next part is pure speculation, but I'm almost certain that it wasn't a mail-away premium. I say this for two reasons:
(1) My grandmother was notorious for not taking part in any mail giveaways or rebates. Back in the fifties she sent back a crapload of Raleigh Cigarette coupons in order to get a radio, a tablecloth and some driving gloves. The Raleigh Cigarette people never sent her the stuff she "won" and ever since she was burned that one time, she never again took part in any mail order rebate "scams."
(2) Based on the fact that all the other kids in her neighborhood also had one of these brown-haired He-Men, I'm sure that it had to have been an in-store giveaway- but NOT a toystore giveaway. I say this because the last place on earth my grandmother would have walked into would be a chain toystore.
My guess is that it was a grocery store giveaway, because that was about the only place (besides church) that my grandmother ever went to with any regularity. And I remember the grocery store being within walking distance from her house, so that could explain why all the other local kids had one too. (I really don't see every one of those kids all getting their parents to drive them to the toystore to get a free toy. It's much more likely that they all walked up to the grocery store by themselves to get the figure).
Aside from that information, I can't really think of anything else that could be useful. I know that "brownie" He-Man was part of a big batch of MOTU figures that I traded to another kid for his stash of GI Joes. I explicitly remember him going "Who's this, He-Man's brother?!?!" when he saw the variant.
Sadly, my grandmother has since passed on but if anyone wants me to pursue this any further, I can try to dig up her old address in New Jersey and maybe try to figure out which grocery store that was.
New Jersey... man, these things were really all over the place.
Maybe we should do a map and pin-point cities and maybe figure out what prominent store chains were in those areas?
Going by Google maps, I'm pretty sure the grocery store was an A&P. I called them to find out how long they had been at that location, but the manager wasn't sure. He said at least twenty years as far as he knew. But I'm fairly certain this is the store I'm thinking of.
So to sum up what I suspect based on educated guesses and childhood memories:
1. My toy probably came from some sort of in-store promotion, most likely at an A&P Grocery store in Old Bridge, New Jersey ca. 1985.
2. It didn't have the Zodac chest armor.
3. I really wish I hadn't traded him for a bunch of stupid GI Joes.
OK, I know there are allot of speculation on this figure. I asked my mom if there ever was a promotion for a free He-Man figure when I was a kid.
My mom told me that she remembers that When she got me my He-Man toys for Christmas that the Toys-R-Us she got them from had a promotion that if you spent $50 or over on Masters of the Universe toys you got a FREE figure.
She said the thought it was a brown He-Man that came in a baggie. ( she thought it came with 2 weapons, but not sure of what)
Funny thing is I NEVER told her what the figure was that I was wondering about!! So just maybe this may be a lead to finding out??
Maybe a long shot but you never know.
In Lynchburg near where I lived, we had both an A&P and a TRU.
BUT, I never saw another kid with savage He-Man. Not saying they didn't, but no one ever brought one to school, and I never visited another kid's house who had one.
Maybe it didn't hit Virginia?
At any rate, I don't recall there being A&P stores in CT in the 80's, but I dug this out of Wikipedia:
"n 1986, A&P purchased the Waldbaum's chain (which had stores in southern New York and southern New England), and an upscale New York City-based chain, Food Emporium. These stores mostly replaced underperforming A&P stores (by the early 2000s, all New York City A&P stores were operating under the Waldbaum's or Food Emporium banners). The company again became profitable."
Waldbaum's store were prevalent in Connecticut in the 80's. If the 1986 time frame fits, it's very likely that a Waldbaum's store owned by A&P was in the area at the time.
Also, as I'm typing this, I just got a text from my wife who grew up in Bristol, which is the town next to Plainville. She just confirmed that there used to be an A&P grocery store in Bristol. The house I picked up the figures was very close to the Bristol town line.
Far from being proof, and highly circumstantial, it lends credence to Night Stalker's A&P theory.
UPDATE: My wife confirmed that there use to be an A&P store in Bristol (It's a Stop & Show now). I found the address of the house where I picked up the figures and it's 1.2 miles from where the A&P used to be. Again, not proof, but it certainly supports the A&P theory.
Last edited by Relayer35; September 22, 2011 at 03:04pm.
Have you guys seen this Ebay auction??
**Please do not link to active eBay auctions. Thanks. **
Maybe the seller knows more about the origin of these figs as she has 3 of them listed (there's another auction for a single savage fig)
shocked at what those ones on ebay just sold for. especially when they were missing some of the main stuff that this thread says to look for.
after reading more from Brown He-man's story, there is no doubt WBHM was a given out promotion of some sort. but we all know that. He had 2 in his collection because of his brother. I'm from a family of 2 boys and whenever there was a figure promotion or any promotion, my mother had to also get my brother on (whether we actually wanted it or not) because she knew he would complain about not getting something equal in the mail or in the store and my mother was very fair in that way. so we had 2 anakins, emperors, nien numb, ackbar in the star collection back in the day. never has 2 of any of the regular issued figures unless it was an army builder.
this really sickens me that i never had a WB HM because my childhood was so great that there is never anything i want to forget so i actually remember ever little thing. if i got WB HM, i would have remembered everything about him. unfortunately i didn't have him and i don't remember any friends having him.
there is one friend i could ask becasue he had everything that was motu related and he could have possibly had WB because he was very spoiled and nothing really was out of his reach. he was the friend who talked about yak face before anyone knew about him being the last star wars figure.
i'll have to ask him through facebook if he knows anything.
LOOKING for these MOTU Full Cardbacks:
-Skeletor w/"original" promo on front
-Man E Faces w/ "extra weapons" promo on front
-Trap Jaw w/o Ring Promo on front & newer figures pictured on back
-Tri Klops w/o Ring Promo on front & newer figures pictured on back
& Mantisaur Empty Box (USA) Version
um yeah the two might not be related but i just found an old 80's Coke ad for "Save The Lady" were you donated money for the Statue of Liberty and entered for one of 5000 Cabbage patch dolls those were Mattel products right?This might explain the East Coast concentration if they had the same kind of promotion only with He-Man. Or maybe it was a coke contest with the girl prize being Special Edition Barbie and the boys being He man since those were the hot toys during that period maybe researching barbie contests/mail orders might produce something.
Last edited by keller; October 20, 2011 at 03:28am. Reason: more info
I'm not saying your idea isn't likely. I could totally see a regional promotion being the source...
yeah sorry i meant to change that Cabbage patch part but the 1982 Cracker jack collection game piece thing listed in the Borden- Wise chips part got me thinking that "W" might not of been for Wonder maybe it was a "Wise-Chips/Cracker Jack He-Man" since this Driver Collection incentive sales promotion Centered around Mattel toys like Barbie, Hot Wheels, Etc. Even if this wasn't it it does show a Mattel promotion having to do with a Major food company around the same year the figure Was produced and could of been a "Boy Toy" substitution for a Barbie prize. Plus how cool does Wise He-Man sound vs Wonder Bread? ****update i found the commercial that seals the deal
Last edited by keller; October 21, 2011 at 02:26am. Reason: commercial
I've gone back over this thread here and there and done a little research. In almost every post in where the author knew the specific area in which the figure originated, there was at one time an A&P nearby. This wouldn't have been so significant back in the sixties and seventies, but by 1985, the A&P chain was in deep trouble and was mainly concentrated in a few regions in the country- regions where this figure seemed to pop up.
I'm still almost 99% sure that my Savage He-Man came from A&P, and working from that theory, a lot of little things seem to confirm my theory. One lead I'm working on is the whole Wonderbread thing. Like all good urban legends and mythological folklore, most stories like this have at least a kernel of truth to them. I mean, the Wonderbread connection had to come from somewhere, didn't it? And I don't think that because Wonderbread put out the trading cards served as the explanation.
The company that owned Wonderbread in the 80's once tried to buy out the A&P chain in the seventies. Could be a coincidence, but I dug further and found out that Wonderbread manufactured several of A&P's "store brand" bread products, including their repackaged "Miraclebread" which was the same loaf as Wonderbread in an A&P wrapper. This implied a close working relationship between the two companies.
Could this explain the WB connection? Could Wonderbread have run some sort of promotion only for the A&P chain? I have no evidence to back this up, but I certainly think it's possible being that in many of the old newspaper flyers and advertisements for A&P that I dug up, two things are very apparent: A&P ran Wonderbread products on sale quite frequently, and A&P seemed to have a LOT of exclusive promotions that none of the other stores ran. And a lot of these promos were aimed at kids: keychains, toys, candy, trading cards, etc.
It doesn't seem inconceivable that there could have been an A&P-only Wonderbread promo, and in all actuality this "Savage" He-Man has been a "Wonderbread' He-Man all along. Of course, this Wonderbread connection is all speculation, but I still stand by my assertion that this figure came from A&P.
1 of 200 active He-Man.org members.
This is such a strange mystery, will there ever been a true answer?