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MOTU Classics at Wal-Mart – ToyGuru Responds

So by now you have probably seen this image pop up online. This was taken at a Wal-Mart in California that apparently stocked an entire endcap full of MOTU classics Roboto and Gygor action figure. This of course created quite the buzz, since MOTUC is an online-only line. Even more odd is the fact that Wal-Mart is selling these for much cheaper than they were on Matty – $24.97 for Gygor and $16.97 for Roboto.

It seems to be an isolated incident, as this is the only Wal-Mart store that they have shown up in. Of course, a lot of questions have been raised. Why does Wal-Mart have them? And how are they selling figures that were “sold out” on Matty? That question especially burns for Roboto, a figure many folks missed out on originally.

I contacted Scott “ToyGuru” Neitlich as soon as this photo surfaced to ask about it. After some investigation, Scott has finally commented publicly.

From the MattyCollector.com forums, ToyGuru responds to a question asked by ToyHypeUSA.com:

Took us a few days to get to the bottom of this one. Bottom line is these items were not sold to WMT. They appear to be at only one single location and this WMT aquired them on the secondary market from a third party. Mattel did not set up this end cap or this promotion. There are no plans for MOTUC to be distributed at retail at this time. Maybe the toy aisle manager is a big MOTU fan. Not really sure, but this is not a Mattel program. That i can confirm.

This is definitely a weird situation. Personally, I was not aware that single Wal-Mart stores could purchase random product like this to sell, but it obviously appears that they can. It does seem strange that Mattel was not the one who sold them the product, though. A while back it was reported that a lot of Matty stock had shown up at Ollie’s discount stores. Perhaps the same 3rd party who bought that stock also bought this stock and sold to Wal-Mart. I guess that’s always possible.

Either way, this just seems strange no matter how you look at it. On one hand…cool! He-Man at retail for all to see! But on the other…weren’t these sold out?



  • BrathAttack says:

    I smell BS. Retailers, especially major retailers go through their distributor. Single stores don't just go purchase stock from some mystery "secondary market" source.

    • Pixel Dan says:

      Pat G made a good point below. Most Wal-Marts carry "local" merchandise that would not come fromt heir normal distributors. For example, my Wal-Marts all carry merch for the local High Schools. So maybe this purchase was done in the same manner. Mattel is in CA, VERY close to this Wal-Mart after all. *shrugs*

      • stink e says:

        But how do they explain the low price of the figs? How would a 3rd party get so many at such a low price that they can afford to sell them to Wal Mart at an even lower price so they can mark up a profit?? MattyCollector doesn't give a price break for bulk orders that I know of.

      • stink e says:

        Sorry, I don't see that as a "good point" at all. This is in no way the same as selling the local H.S. apparel, unless the local H.S. has a subscription process for their t-shirts, and everyone who goes to or is a parent of someone who goes to the school was told the same items are "sold out". Not to harp, but something stinks.

        • Pixel Dan says:

          Oh, I didn't mean it like that. I more meant his point about stores placing individual orders, and not from just corporate distribution. I'm certainly not defending any one stance. I'm playing devil's advocate, trying to look at this from all angles and possibilities. It's definitely odd, there is no denying that.

  • Jamie S says:

    I don't know, a lot of Walmarts sell local team stuff (such as high school, college, and local pro teams apparel) that you can't find nationwide. So I don't think it's impossible that something like this could happen, but it's odd regardless.

  • pat g. says:

    working for a major retailer stuff like this happens all the time. our private brand items show up in wal-mart and places like big lots and its made only by us. Some times the factories and shipping companies sell the items. it might just be the truth that this was mattel selling the items but on the other hand it is mattel

    • Pixel Dan says:

      Cool. Thanks for the info!

    • stink e says:

      " stuff like this happens all the time". Really?? I kind of doubt exclusive, "high end", mainly subscription items that are said to be "sold out" often show up at Wal Mart at a much lower price than original retail. No, I don't buy that " stuff like this happens all the time". Something stinks here, and it's not Stinkor!

  • Captain Triumph says:

    Mattel can sell their wares anyway they want. The thing that bugs me as a collector is that these items are being sold as a web-only, buy them now or you might never get them….and buy them at a premium price to boot! This only devalues the line(which isn't why I collect) and drives people away. Mattel is its own worst enemy.

  • Alphatrion says:

    Well whatever the case, I'm completely sick of Scott. He seems completely full of it. Sorry.

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