Saturday, October 16, 2010

31 favorite monsters: Mantenna


While most other kids were wild about He-man and She-ra in the mid-80's, I was under six years old and still preferred such "baby" shows as Glow-worm Friends and Winnie the Pooh. My only experience with the characters of He-man's universe was with the action figures, and I can only remember owning one of them. Fortunately, it's still the only one I'd ever need; a freaky, big-eyed bat-bug whatsit hilariously named Mantenna.

I always adored this figure's two-lobed head, veiny ears, lidless stare and gaping, ragged facial orifice, though Mantenna's best feature is also his action feature - extending eye stalks!

I've always loved the aesthetic of eyeballs reaching or dangling from big, gaping sockets, and I think Mantenna might be primarily to blame. Knowing nothing about the character in cartoon form, I always played with him as one of the good guys - a physically frail but highly intellectual alien hero.

It was many years before I'd finally see Mantenna in action on She-ra: Princess of Power, and was delighted to learn that he's actually six-limbed, like an insect, which was never apparent with the figure's four legs sculpted as two, though I was slightly let down by his more humanoid facial features. Cartoon Mantenna is a villain, obviously, but one of those lovable underdog villains who might not even be a villain if he just had better friends.

...Of course, I'd just pick whichever side Shadow Weaver was on myself.


Anonymous jph139 said...

Ah, I had the action figure myself, but never knew just who it was - a hand-me-down toy, and He-Man was rather before my time. But it was definitely one of the coolest around.

6:33 PM  
Blogger Zocktastic said...

I too had Mantenna, I bought him from a friend's garage sale when I was small. In fact, he might still be around somewhere... Hmm..

They made a great looking Mantenna statuette a while back. Not poseable but utterly gorgeous and colorful, and appropriately bizarre.

Here's an image, courtesy of "Princess of"

1:33 AM  
Blogger Lee said...

Wow, Shadow Weaver has the most flattering looking cloak I've ever seen.

I watched some "Masters of the Universe" back in the day, but I don't even remember this spinoff.

3:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i had Mantenna, but i never got my Modulok :(

4:34 PM  

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