Sometimes collecting MOTUC Exclusives can be a real ball buster. In the case of this year’s PowerCon Exclusives, you didn’t have to go to the Con, you just had to be willing to pony up big money on a pre-order at one of those well known online scalpers, oops… I mean toy retailers. One of those was a re-release of the large dragon, Granamyr in his green Mini-Comic colors. The price? $140 for a repaint of a toy that was originally $85 back in 2012. Hey, don’t judge me… it’s already selling for a lot more than that on Ebay and it’s still cheaper than what the original red Granamyr is going for these days. Besides, my idea of self-control was not buying the other two PowerCon Exclusives. So hey, let’s take a look at this big-ass dragon…
The box looks very similar to the one used for the original release with his color being appropriately changed from red to green. I absolutely adore the artwork here. It’s very reminiscent of the stuff we used to get back in the vintage days. His tag line on the front reads, “Great Dragon Lord of Darksmoke” and it points out that as big as this box is, he does indeed come unassembled. The box is collector friendly, but it has that weird shape that Matty loves to do on these things, meaning that there’s actually multiple flaps on the side panels, the tape on each of which need to be carefully cut in order to preserve the box while opening him.
The back features a picture of the toy and a full bio. You also get a little headshot from the Mini-Comic, which inspired this new deco for the character. I was really on the fence over picking up the original release of this guy, but I had a lot of other irons in the fire and my resolve actually held out for once. When I saw how great this re-deco looked in green, I just couldn’t resist. Time to open him up!
Dragon parts!!! Inside the box you get two trays of parts, plus the torso wrapped in a plastic bag, and a simple, folded instruction sheet. There are a total of ten parts used to build him: Two legs, two arms, torso, neck, head, two wings, and a tail. If you’ve ever put together a Hasbro Build-A-Figure or a Mattel Collect-And-Connect, than putting this beast together should feel familiar, only on a much larger scale. I was surprised that it looks like he’s capable of being disassembled and returned to the box, which isn’t always the case with these kinds of assembly jobs. I can’t imagine any time when I won’t want this guy on display, but it’s always nice to have options to return a toy to the box, especially when it’s an exclusive release like this one.
Dear God, this thing is gorgeous! GORGEOUS!!! If you already have the original release, most of what I’ve got to say will be common knowledge, but this is my first experience with the figure, so please forgive me, because I’m going to have to do a lot of gushing. Granamyr measures about 14-inches tall in his seated position, and make no mistake, this is a figure that is designed to be sitting. His spindly little dragon legs can indeed be stretched out for him to stand on, making him monstrously tall, but he really looks goofy when standing. He does, however, look right at home seated with his knees drawn up on either side of his chest. Regardless, he’s still fully articulated in his arms and legs, with rotating hips and shoulders and rotating hinges in the elbows, knees, wrists, and ankles. He has additional swivels at his chest and the base of his tail, there are rotating hinges in his wings, and his neck is ball jointed.
The sculpt here is quite extravagant. The body is indeed rotocast, and that sometimes results in softer and mushier sculpts, but that’s certainly not the case here. Every part of his body is covered with sculpted scales, which feature some beautiful definition, making him look ancient. You also get crosscuts in his chest and the bottom ridges of his tail, some nice barbs coming off of his forearms, and a row of beefy spikes running down his spine. You can even make out the muscle definition in his upper legs and the tendons running from his fingers to the backs of his hands. The detail on display here feels worthy of a higher end statue, and it’s really something special to see it on an action figure, albeit a rather pricey one.
Like a great piece of art, the quality and composure of the paint compliments this sculpt brilliantly. That’s not to say the original red version wasn’t stunning, this one is just… different. The multiple shades of green are applied to get the most out of picking out the detail in the scales and muscles and other bits of dragon anatomy, with a lighter lime green used for his belly and some glossy gray paint for his claws.
And then there’s the head sculpt, which is a total knock-out. Sure it helps that they had a great design to begin with, but the quality of this sculpt just elevates it through the roof. The wrinkles, the jagged teeth, those lizard-like creases around the corners of his mouth. The cavernous nostrils and the prominent, imposing brow framing those mystical pupil-less white eyes. Everything here is just so masterfully done giving Granamyr a ton of personality and an ancient and wizened look.
The paintwork on the face is also stellar and arguably even better than the body. It emphasizes every little crease and crevice. The teeth are painted to match his claws, the eyes are now white, instead of the yellow used for the first release, and his helmet is finished to look like worn, cold steel. The horns on the helmet have a realistic ivory finish.
I already walked through the articulation here, and pointed out that this figure is designed with a very singular display option, however, that doesn’t mean the articulation is wasted. Not at all. You can still get some wonderfully expressive poses out of him and he’s still a lot of fun to play with.
I pre-ordered this beauty the day it went up, and I’ll be real honest and admit that when the pre-order finally dropped, I found myself hit with a pang of regret. My list of want-to-buy toys right now is pretty long and I’m already making some painful compromises to accommodate my budget. I needed a $140 dragon hitting my checkbook like I needed a hole in the head. Checking completed listings on Ebay, I had every intention of putting him on the block when he arrived and making a little extra cash on the deal too. But then I opened him and put him together and sat this majestic creature on my desk beside me. It was then I instantly knew that I had made the right decision buying him and that there was no way I could give him up. This is quite simply a work of art and I absolutely love him. What’s more, he’s such a versatile figure, and I can see using him in a whole bunch of different displays besides MOTUC, from Mythic Legions to my LJN Advanced Dungeons & Dragons figures. He’s going to be welcome among many different lines.