If Toy Guru Can’t Convince You Mattycollector is in Trouble, Maybe the Four Horsemen Can

DC Universe vs the Masters of the Universe 1

It’s not without a little irony that as Mattel gets a huge push this month for its two flagship collector brands with the DC Universe vs the Masters of the Universe comic book hitting shelves, Mattycollector is finding its subscription pre-orders for the DC Universe Club Infinite Earths and the Masters of the Universe Classics Club Eternia both in jeopardy. Deja vous? Last year we were in a similar spot. During the Matty sub period, we had the MOTU limited series comic book hitting shelves, and collectors were still reeling from DC Universe Classics going on hiatus at big box retail. But somehow, it seems more dire this time around.

And yet, we’re seeing the Crisis on Multiple Earths / Eternias (see what I did there?) being handled using almost the same exact playbook as last year. To start, when the subs are announced, we get promised improvements from Digital River. Last year: manage your subscriptions online. This year: a new quarterly shipping option. Are these changes from Digital River helping?

When it’s clear that the subs are not gaining traction, the next step is for Toy Guru to sound the alarm – if the subs don’t hit minimums, they’re gone! And now we’re at the next point, where the Four Horsemen tell us that hey, this is for real.

Guys, it’s not that we don’t believe you. I just think it’s silly to keep running the same game plan, when it should be painfully obvious that it’s not working like it used to. If the subs don’t succeed in KILLING THE LIEN this year, make sure they don’t do it next year – try something new.

MOTUMeter_600x600_v7 DCUMeter_600x600_v7

Here’s the Four Horsemen’s appeal to the fans. DC fans, take heart – this year it isn’t all just about Masters!


If you know who we are then you probably know about Mattel’s action figure lines – Masters of the Universe Classics and DC Universe Classics, and you probably also know about our involvement with both of those properties. Both lines are very near and dear to our hearts as fans and we always try to remember how very blessed we are to have the opportunity to work on both of them.

So, if you know who we are and you know about MotU Classics and DCU Classics, then you probably know what this message is going to be about. Both lines are in danger of ending prematurely and they need your help to continue. We’re not going to beg you to buy multiple subscriptions or try to convince you that getting a subscription to either or both of these lines is more important than paying your rent or putting gas in your car. Those of you who have followed us for a while know that we’ve never been like that, and that if anything we’re going to do what is natural to us and come at this from a fan’s point of view.

First and foremost, there have been rumors floating about that this is some sort of scare tactic by Mattel just to sell more subscriptions than they really need and that the charts on MattyCollector.com are faked. These rumors could not be farther from the truth. What’s going on is that Mattel is being completely transparent about the subscriptions that have been sold so far and they’re letting you in on it just so you’ll be aware of the progress and consequently how much danger these lines are really facing of being ended. We’re actually floored that the MotU Classics subscription is only up to 35% at the time of this writing and the DCU subscription is only at about 20%!

From a fans perspective we see it like this…

With the DCU line there are still opportunities for all of us to finish off some hero and villain teams that we’ve all have wanted for a while and also to get characters that really need an update and an upgrade from earlier versions that were done of them, like Superman’s nemesis – Doomsday!

As for MotU Classics, there are still lots of fairly top tier characters that are from the original toy lines and cartoons that have yet to become part of the MotU Classics universe. Plus there are many fan-favorite secondary characters that may never see the light of day if the subscription campaign isn’t successful. Characters like Tongue Lashor, Rio Blast, Extendar, Squeeze, Ninjor, Dragstor, Sssqueeze, Flutterina, Angella, Blade, Entrapta, Saurod, New Adventures Skeletor, Evil Seed, Sweet Bee, Double Trouble, Flogg, Mermista, and yes – even Madame Razz and Gwildor ALL need to be made! It’s just plain and simple – without the subscriptions these figures just have no chance of ever happening.

So, it’s not a scam or a scare tactic. It’s just fact. Both of these iconic, history making toy lines are in danger of being cancelled and the only way we can all make sure this doesn’t happen is to subscribe to Club Eternia for Masters of the Universe Classics figures and to Club Infinite Earths for DC Universe figures before Monday August 19th 2013 to help ensure that these two truly classic lines stick around for a little while longer.

That’s less than two weeks before the fate of these two heroic lines will be decided. This time you truly DO have the power! To go directly to the MattyCollector.com subscriptions page, just click here: http://www.clubs.mattycollector.com/store/mattycol/en_US/DisplayShopperDefinedBundlePage/OfferID.40890484909


8 thoughts on “If Toy Guru Can’t Convince You Mattycollector is in Trouble, Maybe the Four Horsemen Can”

  1. What a joke. Mattel has dug their own grave with the Club Infinite Earths sub with poor quality control, steady alarming price increases, abysmal customer service, and questionable character selection.

  2. Just sell your toys at retail and we will keep buying as long as they’re available. I’d rather deal with hunting down toys at retail than deal with Digital River.

  3. I have a CRAZY idea. Make the DC figures, right? Maybe in, like, “waves”. Perhaps with parts to a larger figure in each box that you can, maybe, collect and connect to make a bigger figure. And then? Sell them in actual stores! This would TOTALLY work. Mattel should try this instead of being complete idiots.

  4. I’m with HeyWait. Also the fact that you don’t know half the figures you are signing up for. Prices are too high. Their competitor, Marvel Legends, MSRP at $16.99 and available at brick and mortar stores. $3 cheaper and no shipping? yes please! oh and now that the shipping is out there, collectors shouldn’t have to pay almost $10 shipping on a $20 item. I am a big collector but I would feel better about the subscription failing.

  5. Unfortunately, I don’t know where the best place to respond to this is, so I’ll just leave my comment here.
    Speaking for myself, I haven’t had much money to sub in the past couple yars. I believe all of that may change soon (and sadly, probably just a liiiitle too late). However. The sad fact is, even if I had a lot of money back when the subs first started, or even in the future, I would refuse to sub. Why? Let me break it down for you:
    From the time I was little, in the realm of spending money, my parents drilled 3 things into me. 
    1. Always try to get the best price that’s fair to both you and the other person.
    2. Try to spend money only on things that are really worth your dollar (I know it’s subjective)
    3. If you have the option, always wait and see if what you’re considering is worth buying by checking into other people’s reviews after they have the same item. Patience is not only a virtue, it can save you a lot of headaches later.
    So, when the subs first came about, I decided to wait and see what the first few people to post about their figures said. Man was I glad I did. From the standpint of getting the most out of my dollar, the subs will never make the cut. Here’s a list of points why (in semi-priority-order from least to most):
    1. Price – This is almost moot, since I don’t have a lot of money right now, but as you’ll read later on, the changing of quality while ALSO raising the price hurts quite a bit, even if you’re rich. It’s like a slap in the face to loyal fans.
    2. Lack of proper Quality Control – During the run of DCUC, here is a list of problems I had (some even on multiple figures of the same char.):
    a. Exploding crotches (or torsos)
    b. Parts put on backwards (crotches, abdomens, etc.)
    c. Parts switched to the wrong side (lower legs, biceps, etc)
    d. 2 of the same side (legs, arms, etc)
    e. Malformed/warped parts (any and all places on the figures, NOT bent like you can straighten with hot water, but warped beyond recog.)
    f. Terrible paint jobs
    Probably a few more I can’t think of offhand. In a retail line, all things being equal, this won’t faze me much. I had some good luck in that I was able to replace almost every figure with any discernible damage (although a few times it was at my cost, gas money and all that). But I really can’t imagine getting a figure from Matty.com in the mail and finding a severe defect, and then being told “we’ll replace it if we can, send it back” and then when you do, you find out that the figure is sold out. I think if I got Metron  from subbing and he had any major problems, I would actually go to Mattel’s HQ and shoot someone.
    3. Lies from Mattycollector (plus dangling things, etc.) – I’m not going to go into this in detail ’cause frankly, you’ve probably all read all of this stuff before, and why make my fingers hurt from typing another 100,000 characters on this one subject? Suffice it to say, if Matty hadn’t LIED so much during the entire run of this line, I wouldn’t be woried about a couple of their little snafus. But they did, and now I can’t trust them anymore. Trust is a HUGE part of getting your fans to pony up for your merchandise, if not THE biggest part. Too bad for you Mattel. You made your bed.
    4. Choice of character/costume/item – THIS is where I might surprise you (if that’s possible anywhere). You see, I actually LIKED the fact that we got some of the super-obscure characters in DCUC and DCIE. I actually would have applauded the choice of Red Hood’s Morrison run costume in CIE IF they had put the biker outfit version in Batman Unlimited and sold them concurrently (what a damn wasted opp. that was, Mattel, you jackasses). I even LOVE the “looks” that some people hate (Cyclotron, Captain Boomerang). What I DIDN’T love was that Matty decided to force subbers to buy certain things like Batzarro (who should have been in Unlimited) or like Rocket Red in his more recent look (which leads into my next numbered segment). Hell, even the inclusion of a weapons pak (with Nekron’s infamous scythe, of course) would have bought some cred. and good will in my eyes.
    5. Choice of scale – Even with the obvious, Rocket Red, aside, they REALLY messed up on some of these guys. Atrocitus is the BIG standout for me. They should have just used either the Jemm buck AT MINIMUM or gone with something like Ares parts with new parts added, or maybe even Etrigan with new legs. The other Lantern leaders are also wrong. Saint Walker should be taller, and Larfleeze might be ok, except his arms should be longer. Who am I kidding, Larfleeze needs to be taller. Lead is a disgrace (don’t get me started on Tin), just like Rocket Red. Speaking of RR, I wish they had just made him a normal-sized figure with PE or Ares parts and new parts added, even in overlay. That is if they were not going to go all “completely new body” on him. There are probably other things I’m forgetting, but my fingers hurt, so I’m going to end this portion now.
    6. Lack of articulation – This is a HUGE one. This bothered me to the maximum when it started in DCUC12, but the lack of ankle rockers is really killing me, and if you add that to the lack of neck movement, the lack of proper torso art. on some, the lack of bicep art. on a couple, probably others I’m forgetting about, and THEN raise the price on the figures to boot? Compare the figures we are getting in CIE to stuff like DCUC3 or 8, where characters got 3 or more acc. AND a huge C&C part (which leads into my next point) and the price was $10-15, and then take into account that if you gave me all that and maybe an extra head or set of hands, I would GLADLY pay $20 each in this coming year, and it kind of puts things into perspective. The fact that Habsro is doing ML for $15 doesn’t help.
    7. Lack of C&C part – Honestly, this was one of the major incentives for me to start buying DCUC in the first place. You can’t cite the over-sized figure as a “free figure” like the C&C because we’re actually paying for it. This is not a HUGE gripe but a significant one nonetheless.
    8. Digital River – This is probably the biggest one of all. Setting aside anything else on this entire list, after the horror stories I’ve heard about this piece of garbage thing that shouldn’t even have the cojones to call itself a “company”, I am SOOOO glad I waited. Even ONE of those incidents like I heard about would have had me cancelling my credit card and foaming at the mouth. As long as Matty uses DR, I will never EVER sub up on DCIE. Matty, take note!
    What does all this mean for Mattel?
    Well, if anyone is like me (and I already know a ton of people are) it means that Mattel might as well save their breath when it comes to the DC sub. 4HM, we all love you guys, and we know it’s not you that’s killin’ teh lien, but honestly, unless Mattel fixes most, if not all of the above, I’m thinking you guys will be moving away from professionally sculpting DC characters in the near future.
    P.S. most of what I listed above doesn’t pertain to the MOTU sub. I just could never afford that. Maybe I’ll get one this year, dunno. If I actually end up with a lot of money, I’ll probably just go back and buy all the figures I missed and the new stuff on eBay or boards.

  6. Squeezeplay 
    100% agree that Digital River is probably the biggest problem. THIS is the reason that I refused to buy a sub. I admit, I was mad when people on the matty forums started complaining about the ebay sellers in China. These people should have just shut the **** up and minded their own business. Normally I wouldn’t not support sellers like that. But? When they are the lesser of the 2 evils that says something.
    Matty managed to squeeze out those sellers and the brick and mortar stores for the sake of jacking up the prices to over $30 a figure (with S&H) on their site. Why? Greed. Quality control is even worse, there’s no guarantee that they will send you the right figure, one that it’s broken or that it will be sent to an address that is in any way similar to the 1 you provided them.
    Yet, they want you to buy sight unseen. If not for the waves of Rainbow Lanterns and Super Friends crapola (apologies to fans of the aforementioned crapola) I might be okay with that. But when you can’t even promise Granny Goodness, Miss Martian or Vixen and you’re only real bait is Doomsday (who was ALREADY released in DCSH form) and there’s a chance Scott will devote sub slots to figures like Ski-Trip Batman or Bizarro Lois or some repaint to appease Super Powers fans? No. Thanks.
     And finishing teams? Not likely! Even IF we get Liberty Belle where is Earth 2 Superman or Earth 2 Robin? Earth 2 Hawkgirl? See? We can’t finish the JSA otherwise. And where is the original Mr. Terrific? How about JLA, Teen Titans and Young Justice? How about Tempest? Or King Faraday even? The fact that you hold these characters hostage until we cough up $30 or pay for a sub is beyond reprehensible. Claiming you can’t sell figures IN STORES and in waves for half the price is an out and out lie. You sabotaged DCUC with waves 17 and 18 so you could say “look at all the peg warmers! No one’s buying! Now we have to do subs to save the line! Now the figures cost DOUBLE what you WERE paying!” DCUC sold JUST FINE when people could FIND them (wave 5)! Your problem is distribution and ADVERTISING. I was not aware of DCUC even existing until wave 8! Mattel isn’t even trying!
    At this point I would not care if Mattel got out of the 6 inch figure game. We have Marvel Legends and DC Collectibles (Direct). Don’t let the door hit you on the way out, Scott and take that stupid “Nite-Lik” figure with you.

  7. @Bev Squeezeplay
    “Normally I wouldn’t support sellers like that. But? When they are the lesser of the 2 evils that says something.”
    Couldn’t have said it better myself.
    Always made me feel better about my occasional eBay slip… 
    I think we have a mutual admiration society going. I agree with all that you said, aside from the wave 17/18 hate, but I do feel that they should have allocated one SF or one deputy lantern to each wave. If they could have managed it better and continued the retail line, that is. If not, an acceptable alternative would be to nix those guys and fill the last few waves with actual important figures, even if they were obscure, and then put ONE SF char. and/or ONE deputy lantern in each year of the sub, which would then equal out because of the wave 17/18 characters not in the sub.
    This is all assuming that the SF char. and deputy lanterns actually each came with an accessory or two, and maybe some swapable heads and/or hands. As it is, giving us no lanterns with Hals and no alternate “greedy” head for Luthor really sucked. A character-specific stand for Flash would have been nice as well.

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