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Real Space Oddities


Photo by Dave Bryant


The items below are all unusual for one reason or another. These items all really exist, and for once, are exactly what they seem to be.
A Prototype Matt
Christian de Grandpre has produced a MMM documentary on video, in which he shows a prototype Matt figure he states was obtained from a retired Mattel designer. The figure is moulded rough with untrimmed mould lines in light blue without paint. Mattel Inc. and the date on the back are scrawled on the figure (seemingly with the point of a knife) and the boots are less detailed and filled-in. Pics to come...
Red-headed Callisto and Faded Sensor
We believe this unfortunate alien's head can turn from green to red/brown when overexposed to ultra-violet (sun)light. Another theory is that a small batch of Callistos may have been made with heads in this colour, either by mistake or possibly as a stop-gap measure.

Here's a picture of the one sold recently on eBay, courtesy of the seller, www.landerstoys.com. Dave Bryant bought this piece expressly to have a look at it, and sent us this picture. He states that this head is very uniform in colour and does not appear to have hardened, suggesting it was indeed originally made in this colour.

Then there was a Callisto on Patrick Storto's site whose head has turned opaque from exposure to sunlight, so perhaps the red head was exposed to something else. In the absence of other evidence, the only way to prove or disprove the exposure theory would be to experiment with a green head... Any volunteers out there? ;-)

Other parts of Callisto are equally prone to fading: here's a picture of one where the sensor (gun) has faded to a greyish blue. (Picture courtesy of Derryl D. Depriest)
A real deal! Factory-Incomplete Matt
This Matt figure looks like it's had to leave the factory in a hurry: it has a white suit missing all the details on it. Although the white (primer) paint looks genuine enough, the black straps are so wobbly that we suspect these may have been added by a previous owner. Alternatively, the paint job on the straps may have been the cause of it being rejected in the factory before slipping through anyway.
MMM Bound for Space (at Last!)
JP Aerospace of California ("America's OTHER space program") is a private organisation testing means of getting small satellites up into space using small-sized rockets. As can be seen on their (impressive!) website, they have often benefitted from the Major himself flying along, acting as the flight commander.

Paul Vreede owns one of the Matt figures used in this capacity. Apart from being a white-rubber Matt, it also has the distinction of reportedly having reached an altitude of 3 miles at a speed of Mach 3.5 (!) before crashing into the desert due to a failed parachute.

Apart from this, we've heard of various people trying to get Matt onto a Shuttle mission, though apparently without success so far.

Do these things make a figure more valuable? Maybe to some people they might. Paul says it's fun to think his Matt went up in a rocket, but paid a regular price for it (and would have declined otherwise).
Recent comics
Called "Men from Earth" these feature the adventures of Matt Mason's son together with a number of (female!) Callistians. The artist, former Mattel toy designer Joe Ferreira aka Joe King, claimed he'd acquired the rights to MMM a long time ago. He has since had a running battle with the Mattel legal dept. over this, resulting in his website being closed down at various locations.

The first issue of this comic story has actually been on sale, while a second and third were offered in script form. A t-shirt with the cover graphics of the first issue was also available.

Originally, there were plans (and possibly a script) for a film to be produced by Sybil Danning's production company, as well as plans to produce a revamped MMM toy line. None of these initiatives appear to have progressed beyond the planning stage.
Finally, should anybody reading this have any similar information, additions or corrections, then we would very much appreciate hearing about them.




All Mattel images and captions are copyright Mattel and used without permission. All other content, including images and editorial, is Copyright © 1997-2017 John Eaton, Paul Vreede and/or contributors unless otherwise stated. If there are any comments or objections, please contact John Eaton, by clicking here or Paul Vreede by clicking here.

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