X-Entertainment.Com - Next Article --- By Matt - 1/29/'02
Last July, we looked at one of the strangest Masters of the Universe toys to ever hit store shelves, the Horde Slime Pit. (click here for the article) Though the playset was pretty mundane underneath all the glitz and glamour that comes along with torturing your action figures, it was packaged with a little accessory that's gone on to charm generation after generation of boys who like keeping their hands gooey: a vat of official SLIME! Almost everyone has had the chance to handle some type of toy slime, but there never was a batch quite like this. It was incredibly fun and incredibly stretchy, and to complete the trio of incredibility, the slime smelled incredibly like cat puke. Incredible on all counts, it was the stuff of legend.

The slime was so packed with mysterious goodness that Mattel actually had to pen a four-page manual explaining what to do with it. Today, we review that manual. Tomorrow, the world. If you thought toy slime was interesting before, wait until you get a load of this...

I've gotta admit, Mattel was amazing in their ability to make a plastic can of stench-ridden toy vomit seem important. I know slime is fun, but I had no idea it could be this fun. The implication here is that your glob of sludge is alive - they almost try to play it off as if you've just received an exciting new pet. And let's face it, Masters of the Universe Slime is a hell of a lot more interesting than a goldfish. You can't pretend to sneeze snot all over your friends with a goldfish, and you certainly can't travel with one. The manual kicks things off by assuring you that your slime will eventually get over its initial shyness, and I appreciate the encouragement, because having slime that was too bashful to do anything really was a major concern up until then.

You're requested to make sure your slime gets regular exercise. They insist that you fondle it daily, even going as far as suggesting you 'aerobicize' it. Hell yeah, this is fantastic! I never got to 'aerobicize' He-Man or Skeletor. This slime shit is so much more hands-on. All in all, the mere fact that there exists a detailed manual on how to care for toy slime confirms that we live in a pretty terrific civilization. I don't think God or even the almighty chain of evolution could've possibly predicted that us humans, us lowly humans who have mutated from prehistoric ape-faced barbarians, would ever get to the point where we mass-produce how-to guides about Hordak's diarrhea. Within the words on these photocopied documents lies a stunningly positive commentary on society at large. Well, whaddya know? Masters of the Universe Slime really is important!

The second page focuses more on what you're supposed to do with the slime. As said, the toy was originally created for use with the Horde Slime Pit playset, but ultimately went on to be more remembered for it's own merits. The Slime Pit was essentially a bony chair that you'd sit He-Man figures into and let slime drip all over their heads. I'd like to meet the Mattel exec who pitched that idea to his superiors - the guy must have some serious guts. 'Kids love slime' is a great icebreaker, but where do you go from there? The idea that someone had to craft a speech detailing the potential marketing success of Masters of the Universe Slime is an even more positive statement on society than the slime itself. Getting back to the manual - seems as though slime is at its 'happiest' when mucking up action figures. So this stuff isn't just a low maintenance living creature, it's a low maintenance living creature that's easily amused.

This slime is no one-trick pony, as evidenced by the illustrations detailing other things you can do with it. After you got tired of the Slime Pit playset, you could make the stuff creep out of small crevices, or even take on two MOTU figures at the same time! Oddly enough, the slime ends up being the only truly neutral character in Eternia, attacking both hero and villain characters alike. I think it does this because they all smell like the same plastic and the slime doesn't have eyes to judge who's really worth going after. And eyeless invertebrates typically have inferiority complexes when thrust in a world of sight-driven backboners, so it's no surprise that it's begun to lash out. Besides, this stuff transcends good and evil. When was the last time you looked into your handkerchief after sneezing and thought the crap looked more villainous than your last batch of sneeze juice? Let's cut the slime some slack.

The third page is easily the most important of all. Here we learn how to keep our slime safe and sound, and how to avoid any unnecessary action figure deaths by way of sheer ignorance. Masters of the Universe Slime is fantastic stuff, but like mogwais, you really gotta have a full understanding of the rules to make the experience a healthy and lasting one. If kids were turned off by the idea of adhering to these rules, then they probably weren't ready to own Masters of the Universe Slime. Irresponsibility will only lead to playroom-wide genocide.

First off, the slime should always be kept in it's sealed container when not in use. The can it came in was colorful and had a lid shaped like a demon head, so children shouldn't put up much of a fuss about hanging on to it. Sealing the can was essential to the slime's survival. If you didn't do this, you'd be left with a crusty mess not unlike dried bird shit. Now sure, there's some kids out there who can dream up some killer pranks using fake bird shit, but who wants to sacrifice the poor slime like that? When I was a kid, leaving the can open was how my slime met its end. I cried and cried for weeks, and in fact still haven't recovered. It's never fun to lose friends, but it's even worse when you kill them yourself. Sorry, Slimey. I hope Jesus is using you as a skin exfoliant up in Heaven.

There's other things to take note of, too. While sliming your He-Man figures will only temporarily mess 'em up most of the time, there's a few characters who should never come in contact with the stuff. Any action figure that had 'fur' or any other kind of fuzzy material on it would be destroyed on impact, and the manual is quick to point out Grizzlor and Moss Man as two guys who really, really, really hate being slimed. This didn't stop me, as Grizzlor was the first one I chucked into the Slime Pit. It's not my fault, though. Look at how they worded it up above. You're telling me I'm supposed to resist covering the one action figure I owned who should "never go near it" with slime? Come on Mattel, you were dealing with kids! Ever hear of reverse psychology? The end results weren't pretty, as I effectively killed both Grizzlor and some of my slime simultaneously. Slimemultaneously? Oooh, it's the super fun play-on-words time. I wish it was always super fun play-on-words time.

You're also never to use the stuff in conjunction with action figures who squirt water, like Dragon-Blaster Skeletor and that wild party animal, Kobra Khan. So that's it? This slime, this almighty alien slime, can be defeated by normal, everyday water? Well so much for that, then. It's like watching Day of the Triffids all over again. This impenetrable fortress of slime is just another shitty villain who can be defeated simply by being spat on. God, everything has a catch these days.

They hide all the bad news on the last page of the manual, which is understandable. Celebrations rarely kick off with bad news. Slime should never come in contact with rugs, clothing, hair, wood tables and floors, tapestries, chess sets, food, stereos, tobacco, or the Laserdisc edition of Krippendorf's Tribe. While not intentionally malicious, Masters of the Universe Slime just has the unfortunate genetic makeup capable of ruining all those things. Aside from that, the stuff easily picks up any kind of dirt it comes across, and once it does, it's there forever. Clean slime is happy slime, folks. Don't be trashy.

Allegedly, some of the damage caused by slime can be repaired with a gentle wash of water and vinegar. Even if it doesn't clean the mess, at least you get a light salad dressing out of it. As a final note, the manual tells us that the slime is not a food product. Glad that's cleared up, it looked so much like Jell-O. All in all, the tutorial manual ends up being more entertaining than the toy itself. Then again, I've always been a little biased towards crudely drawn caricatures of freckle-faced idiots with green crap in their hair.

Thanks to Mike Sorella for sending in these scans!

- Matt
E-mail me!
Instant Messager: xecharchar