Thundercats: Classic 6-inch Mumm-Ra by Ban Dai

No offense to Tygra, but this is probably what the first pairing of figures should have looked like in the 8-inch line: The chief good guy and the chief baddie. In fact, as long as Ban Dai is commited to producing all the Thundercats in this scale, I think it would be cool if each wave included a Thundercat and a Mutant or some other bad guy. But then I’m getting ahead of myself. Hello, all, and welcome to today’s feature: 6-inch Mumm-Ra, The Ever Living!!!

Yuppers, the package is the same as Lion-O and basically a shrunk down version of the ones used for the 8-inch Classics. Mumm-Ra is displayed nicely in the package, although you don’t get the full effect since his bandages are all crumpled up at the top. The side panels feature some nice art with Mumm-Ra’s ugly mug and damn was he ugly. Jeesus. Once again, this packaging is very collector friendly, although I don’t suspect I could ever get his bandages back in just right without going insane.
And there he is. Ban Dai did a great job bringing Mumm-Ra’s 80’s animated goodness to action figure form, although in fairness he isn’t an overly complex character design. He’s mostly all greyish-blue skin and muscles. The head sculpt is quite good and they really managed to capture that hideous visage that really creeped me the fuck out back when I was a kid. No kidding, when he turned to Mumm-Ra and started screaming like a banshee on crack, I used to get pretty disturbed. His ceremonial helmet is nicely detailed and the streamers coming off the back are sculpted as if they’re blowing all over the place. If you never saw the classic Thundercats, Mumm-Ra always looked as if he had a high powered fan blowing straight at him from off screen. Apart from his headdress, he’s got a skirt and some lower leg armor, all nicely done.
And then there’s those bandages. Ban Dai got really creative here and included two sets of bendy bandages that plug into his back to simulate the look of them whipping all over the place when he makes his change. Whatever you do, don’t lose the instruction sheet in the package as it shows you how to fit them on just right. There’s a little bit of room for a custom look here, but honestly, these things were meant to go on a certain way and it isn’t all that easy to figure it out without seeing pictures. Oddly enough, there are no pictures of the figure wearing the bandages on the back of the package. Mumm-Ra also comes with an extra pair of hands, which are pretty unnecessary as far as I’m concerned.
As for articulation, Mumm-Ra has decent poseability, but he’s nowhere near as agile as his nemesis, the Lord of the Thundercats. His neck is ball jointed, but there’s limited movement apart from going side to side. His arms feature ball joints in the shoulders, hinges in the elbows, swivels in the bicep and ball jointed wrists. His legs are also ball jointed in the hips, but his skirt limits a lot of the upper leg articulation. You also get hinges in the knees and ankles. Mumm-Ra is ball jointed at the waist, but he lacks the extra joint in the upper torso.
And that’s all I’ve got to say about Mumm-Ra. He retails for around fifteen bucks, which seems about right to me. Ban Dai seems to have really great distribution with this line, as I’ve seen these guys on the pegs all over the place. I really do wish we got Mumm-Ra in the 8-inch scale, only because I think the larger version would have displayed better next to the 6-inch Lion-O. While the LJN figures were roughly the same size, Mumm-Ra always seemed bigger in the cartoon. That having been said, I think Ban Dai did a great job with him. The more restrained level of articulation is likely to irk some, but we already saw a drop between 8-inch Lion-O and Tygra, so I don’t think its the fault of the smaller scale. He’s a great figure, but I can’t say I’m not disappointed he didn’t come with a little Ma-Mutt.

Thundercats: Deluxe 4-inch Mumm-Ra by Ban Dai

I’ve already taken a look at the shriveled up mummy version of Mumm-Ra in the Basic Assortment of Thundercats figures. Now it’s time to check out his buffed out mega-demon form from the Deluxe line. We haven’t actually seen Mumm-Ra’s powered up form in the new cartoon yet, so this figure is really the first taste of what the character is going to look like. I think that’s pretty cool.

The Deluxe packaging is bigger and beefier than the standard Basic Assortment cards with the figures mounted in a half cylinder. I think this packaging is a little too congested and lacks the charm of the Basic carded figures, but it’s still nice looking and was definitely needed for these larger figures and accessories. What makes the figure a Deluxe? Apparently this assortment includes ThunderLynx gimmicks with the figure, whereas the Basic figures require you to have a vehicle or playset in order to exploit their magnetic gimmicks. Mumm-Ra here carries his extra goodies on the figure himself in the guise of his massive ThunderLynx wings. The wings are mounted so that they appear to be attached and spread, but when you open the package you’ll find that you actually need to assemble the wings onto the figure.
Mumm-Ra is definitely a great looking figure and quite reminiscent of the old school version of the character. Like Grune and Panthro, he’s pretty big compared to the rest of the 4-inch assortment. His head is pretty tiny, and it seems to want to look down all the time, but the sculpt is no less impressive. Strangely enough, Mumm-Ra’s two gold bicep bands are separate pieces and have a tendency to pop off, so you might want to dab a little gorilla glue on those babies before you lose them.
Mumm-Ra’s paint job is fairly simple compared to the other figures in the line. He’s mostly grey with the remnants of his bandages painted white and once again, the pins and hinges in his joints are left unpainted. I still can’t really get worked up about that omission, at least not in figures in this small scale. I am, however, definitely disappointed by how poorly his Plundarr emblem is painted on his chest. It’s neatly done, but looks very oversimplified when compared to the one on Grune’s chest, or the Thundercats emblems on the Cats.
Mumm-Ra’s ThunderLynx gimmick is his huge set of wings on his back. You can fold them in around him and when you pass his gauntlet over his Lynx magnet they spring open as you rotate it toward each wing. The wings look really good on the figure when viewed from the front, but rather boxy and artificial from the back. As for the gimmick, it’s works well and makes for a nice attack move, but I would have been perfectly happy to get a Mumm-Ra figure without it, especially if the wings were removable altogether.
You get two accessories in Mumm-Ra’s package. He has his scimitar and his gauntlet. The scimitar is the powered up version of the blade that came with the Basic Assortment Mumm-Ra and the gauntlet is the attack version of the Basic Mumm-Ra’s shield. I like the gauntlet a lot as the claws are deployed and it makes for a pretty cool weapon. The scimitar looks nice and I like the silvery finish better than what we got with Lion-O’s Sword of Omens, but the plastic is very bendy and it’s hard to keep the scimitar from not looking warped.
All in all, I think Mumm-Ra is a solid figure, but there are definitely areas for improvement. I usually hate gimmicks on figures, so I was kind of surprised to find that I didn’t hate Mumm-Ra’s gimmick, even if I would have preferred it be left out. I do think that Mumm-Ra fits this $15 Deluxe price point a lot better than Grune, which we’ll see tomorrow, but that’s probably because his wings make him a more substantial figure and he doesn’t have a bunch of throw-away accessories like Grune did. In the end, Mumm-Ra might not be a homerun, but he’s still a great looking figure and let’s face it, he’s a “must-have” addition to any Thundercats collection.

Thundercats: 4-inch Mumm-Ra by Ban Dai

I kicked off my look at the new Thundercats figures with the hero of the line, so I guess we’ll jump to the big bad next. Actually, the big bad would probably be Mumm-Ra in his buffed out crack-demon form. I’ll get to him soon, but today I’m a little pressed for time, so let’s do a quick look at the Basic Assortment version of Mumm-Ra in his shriveled up mummy form.

Wow. Ban Dai decided to humiliate poor Mumm-Ra by packaging him without his cloak on. It may be to show that the cloak is removable, since it was sculpted onto him on the classic LJN figure, but Mumm-Ra doesn’t look so hot without it. In fact he kind of looks like a drowned blue chiuaua. If I was a MOC collector, I might be put off by this, but as an opener, I think its cool that we see exactly what we’re getting and he fills out the bubble a lot better with all his accessories around him. I really dig Mumm-Ra’s artwork on the card as well. He looks like he’s going to tear someone’s throat out with his teeth.

Out of the package, Mumm-Ra looks like an old man in search of his walker. He’s gaunt and hunched over and not all that impressive. The face sculpt is well done and very similar to the Classic style of the character. I think Ban Dai did a fine job sculpting the bandages and leaving some loose and dangling and yet still making the figure work with the soft rubbery cloak. No doubt, he looks better with the cloak on, or at least a lot more familiar, but I’m happy to have the option to take if off of him too.

The original LJN version of shriveled, powered-down Mumm-Ra was just a PVC statue, so I’m willing to be more forgiving of the fact that new Mumm-Ra doesn’t have a heck of a lot of articulation. His head turns, not so much side to side, but in an upturned fashion because of the way his neck juts out in front of him. He has swivels in the shoulders and he can swivel in the waist. That’s it!

I have absolutely no idea what is going on with Mumm-Ra’s accessories, but that’s mainly because we haven’t seen much of him in the cartoon yet. He comes with what seems to be his own versions of the Sword of Omens in its shorter, dorment form, and Claw Shield. They’re definitely unique sculpts, particularly the shield, but you can see that they’re meant to be a similar set of weapons. Mumm-Ra can barely hold the sword, but the shield snaps on over his other arm pretty well. I may like these better when I find out what they’re all about, but right now I’m not too keen on them.

Admittedly, this version of Mumm-Ra isn’t all that exciting. All things considered, I think Ban Dai did a good job with him, and he’s definitely a must-have for any Thundercats collection, but I think he would have been better bundled with the Deluxe Mumm-Ra. I’m really curious to see if he’s going to get a 6-inch figure treatment, and if so what improvements will be made.