Commander Karg 2019 MOTU Classics Figure
Commander Karg action figure from the Masters of the Universe Classics line.
Rumored to be the hideous descendant of an inbred Spelean archduke and a mad human baroness, Karg was raised in secrecy until his sadistic “ingenuity” attracted the attention of Skeletor. Named grand inquisitor of Snake Mountain, Karg mercilessly extracted information from captives. Sometimes tasked with command of important missions, such as leading a group of Evil Warriors to Earth in search of the Cosmic Key, the twisted fiend was finally apprehended by Lieutenant Andra, object of his warped fixations. He was sent to Prison Starr and kept in solitary confinement, where the ravages of age and isolation turned his hair white and his skin a ghastly ashen color. Eventually freed in the notorious Evil Warrior breakout, Karg returned to Eternia and, at a resurrected Skeletor’s behest, purposely infected scores of unsuspecting Speleans with a long-forgotten contagion called “The Horror-Koth Plague.” The plague spread among the Speleans, turning their skin blood-red and driving them to commit heinous acts of violence until they were saved by the legendary healing powers of She-Ra. Fearful of Skeletor’s fury, Karg lied about his defeat and begged for his miserable life.
The Masters of the Universe Classics line, launched in 2008, is a new line of action figures based on the classic characters from all aspects of the Masters of the Universe franchise. Available solely from Mattel’s website and aimed purely at collectors, the line also includes biographical descriptions of the characters designed to tie the diverging aspects of the mythos together.
Based on the look of the original 1980s MOTU toys, this new toy line was aimed primarily at the adult toy collector market, often available only through subscriptions (from MattyCollector). Sculpted by the Four Horsemen, these toys were updated versions of previous figures as well as characters that never before had an action figure made of them; such as Filmation’s Queen Marlena, Fang-Man, Lizard-Man, Count Marzo, Granamyr, and many others. The toy line featured many redesigned and updated action figures from the original action-figure line from the 1980s, but it also included characters from She-Ra: Princess of Power (Adora, Madame Razz, Scorpia, Shadow Weaver, and others), The New Adventures of He-Man (Mara, Crita, and more), and the Mike Young Productions series from 2002 (Faceless One, Chief Carnivus, King Chooblah, Ceratus, and others). As the line progressed, characters from all versions of MOTU lore were included, from such things such as prototypes and concept art (He-Ro, Eldor, Demo-Man, Gygor, Vykor, and others), box art from vehicles and model kits (Sky High and the Fighting Foe Men), mini comics (the Goddess, Geldor, and Procrustus), and other books, comics, and media (Despara, Strobo, Goat-Man, and more). There were also newly created figures, exclusive to the Classics toy line, such as Draego-Man, Cy-Chop, Castle Grayskullman, and others. In February 2010, the figures of He-Man and Skeletor were available as Toys “R” Us exclusives packed in two-packs with Superman and Lex Luthor, respectively, from Mattel’s DC Universe Classics action figure line; with this dual line expanded to include two-packs featuring Aquaman/Mer-Man, Hawkman/Stratos, Bizarro/Faker, Supergirl/She-Ra, and Green Lantern/Zodac.
Masters of the Universe Classics surpassed the original 1980s toy line in terms of length, running continuously for seven years with more than 150 different figures produced since its launch in August 2008. Along with the Classics series, MOTU Minis and Giants figures were also released in 2014 and 2015. In 2016, Mattel ended production on the MOTU Classics and MattyCollector.com’s Club Grayskull series, with the production company Super7 now taking over the Masters of the Universe license.