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Trap Jaw is a character from the popular Masters of the Universe toy line and accompanying cartoon series He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.

A member of the Evil Warriors, he is a cyborg with a mechanical, sharp-toothed jaw with a deadly bite, and a robotic arm onto which he can slot a wide range of different weapons. He also has a loop in his helmet, which he can use to slide down wires.

Character history

Minicomics

Main article: Trap Jaw (early minicomics)

Trap Jaw seizes Grayskull's power for himself.

Trap Jaw was a psychotic criminal from another dimension, whom Skeletor accidentally brought back with him on a return journey from his alien dimension. Trap Jaw landed inside Castle Grayskull and managed to harness the castle's power, almost enabling him to defeat He-Man[1]. The threat of Trap Jaw caused He-Man and Skeletor to make an unprecedented effort to combine their powers; joining each half of the Sword of Power, yet holding on together. After the power was taken back from Trap Jaw, Skeletor took him on as a new servant.

Filmation series

The "wizard of weapons".

Trap Jaw was Skeletor's "wizard of weapons". Despite his relatively low intelligence; he created and maintained all of his various arm attachments and manufactured instruments of destruction for Skeletor[2] and was sometimes one of the Lord of Destruction's most pragmatic and observant henchmen[3]. Trap Jaw was one of Skeletor's most frequently used warriors, and was often paired with Beast-Man.

On occasion, Trap Jaw would strike out on his own. He had a base of operations in the Sands of Time and once formed an alliance with the mysterious Lord Masque[4].

Trap Jaw's metallic jaw could bite through almost anything, and he could swallow and digest almost any substance. When he ingested the powerful substance, Eternium, he could temporarily gain strength equal to He-Man's[5]. Trap Jaw's most frequently utilized arm attachment was his hook, and he often used his freeze rays in battle.

Trap Jaw would later encounter He-Man's sister, She-Ra, after an attempt by Skeletor to kidnap Princess Adora[6]. He encountered She-Ra once again when he accompanied Skeletor on a mission to overthrow Sweet Bee's people[7].

He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (2002)

Trap Jaw in the MV Creations Comic.

The man who would become Trap Jaw was once known as Kronis, a blue skinned criminal who joined Keldor's warriors in an attempt overthrow the Council of Elders[8]. When Keldor - now transformed into the unstable Skeletor - and his warriors were trapped behind the Mystic Wall in the Dark Hemisphere of Eternia, Kronis grew tired of Skeletor's leadership, believing he was no longer the leader he had followed into battle. After challenge Skeletor's leadership, Keldor was banished from Snake Mountain and raised his own army of followers to go to war with Skeletor.

Trap Jaw's bites through Teela's sword.

Kronis was defeated and Skeletor struck him with such force that his entire jaw was shattered and his arm broken. Seeing that he could still use Kronis, Skeletor ordered Tri-Klops to heal his injuries. Tri-Klops replaced Kronis's missing jaw with a metallic one, leading Kronis to rechristen himself as "Trap Jaw". He greatly feared Skeletor following this incident, but resented the damage he had endured at his hands[9].

Trap Jaw later escaped the dark hemisphere with the rest of Skeletor's evil warriors[10]. He attempted to claim Eternium on one occasion, convinced it would give him enough power to beat He-Man[11].

Trap Jaw, now a devotee of "Motherboard".

Masters of the Universe Revelation

Main article: Trap Jaw (Revelation)

Trap Jaw was one of Skeletor's primary henchmen; helping to lead an assault on Castle Grayskull which resulted in the deaths of both He-Man and Skeletor. After Skeletor's supposed death, Trap Jaw and Tri-Klops took control of Snake Mountain and the other evil warriors, and came under the influence of the mysterious Motherboard, who transformed Skeletor's old warriors into a techno-cult, of which Trap Jaw was a leading member[12].

Netflix series

Main article: Kronis (Netflix)

Kronis.

Kronis was once the Man-at-Arms of Eternos, before he joined Prince Keldor's coup against his brother, Randor. When Keldor was presumed killed, Kronis fled and went into business with his other co-conspirator, Evelyn. Kronis took on an apprentice, Duncan.

Years later, Kronis was reunited with Keldor, who enlisted his and Evelyn's aid to seize the power of Castle Grayskull. Instead, Keldor was transformed into Skeletor through the magic of havoc, and Duncan turned against Kronis, breaking his jaw. Skeletor later shared the power of havoc with Kronis, allowing him to transform into the dark master of weaponry; Trap Jaw.

Equipment

TrapJaw-complete1983series2.JPG

Trap Jaw has various weapons at his disposal. He is able to attach these to his mechanical arm. A list of weapons[13] follows:

  • Hook - The hook is the weapon used most by Filmation.
  • Lasertron - This weapon appears as a gun and is used in various ways, a freeze ray, a shrink ray, or just a regular laser gun.
  • Energy bow - This is a one-off alternate to the Lasertron, which fires a laser out of the center of the bow.
  • Sword blade - This weapon only appears at the end of one episode and is never seen being used against He-Man or any of the Masters of the Universe.
  • Pile-driver - Acts as a mechanical battering ram.
  • Dropper - This attachment is more a tool than a weapon, and is used in the same manner as a winch to lower Mer-Man over the edge of a cliff.
  • Grabber - Telescopes and possesses claws, which enable Trap Jaw to grab things from far away.
  • Fly Swat - This device is never shown being used and only appeared for a short time during one episode.
  • Claw - One of the three items that came with the original action figure, it is only seen once and very briefly in one episode of the Filmation cartoon. It gets more use in the MYP cartoon, which gave more emphasis to the three original weapons.
  • Miniature laser - This is shown as being the hook attachment but with the hook missing.
  • Flamethrower - This weapon is used in the Cave of Winds.
  • Fire extinguisher - This is used in conjunction with the Flamethrower in case the fire got out of hand.
  • Elongated laser - This is another variation on Trap Jaw's laser guns.
  • Freeze Ray - This attachment is actually a freeze ray, it appears as a big cannon on Trap Jaw's arm. Shown during She-Ra episode Assault on the Hive
  • Rocket - The rocket appears as the same attachment as the Freeze Ray, but is used to enable Trap Jaw to fly. Shown during She-Ra episode Assault on the Hive.
  • Welder - The first non-toy weapon used by Trap Jaw in the MYP series. He uses it to repair his own damaged leg in the episode "Trust".
  • Grapple - Also in "Trust", Trap Jaw uses a grapple to reach a hole in the ceiling of the Kulataks' cavern and escape.

Behind the scenes

  • Concept art for Trap Jaw by Mattel designer Colin Bailey.

    According to the line's creator Roger Sweet he was inspired by the character Jaws from the film Moonraker, although many also speculate his design stems from the character of Iron Jaw from Mattel's earlier toy line Big Jim, to whom Trap Jaw bears more than a passing resemblance.
  • In the series guide from Mattel, Trap-Jaw was a criminal who became stranded on Eternia after escaping the biggest jail in the universe, and fell under the command of Skeletor.[14]
  • Trap Jaw's appearance in the early Mini comics differed considerably to his final design; instead sporting light green skin instead of blue and furry boots instead of mechanical legs .
  • Trap Jaw is one of the few characters who was not designed by Filmation to appear symmetrical, allowing the animation cells to be flipped over when needed, saving animation costs. Given this, it is maybe surprising that he appears as often as he does. However, very occasionally, his mechanical arm can be seen on the wrong side of his body.

References

  1. Minicomic: The Menace of Trap Jaw
  2. Diamond Day of Disappearance
  3. Evilseed
  4. House of Shokoti: Part One
  5. Double Edged Sword
  6. Secret of the Sword
  7. Assault on the Hive
  8. The Beginning: Part One
  9. Icons of Evil: Trap-Jaw
  10. The Beginning: Part One
  11. Trust
  12. Poisoned Chalice
  13. He-Man.org - Wizard of Weapons
  14. Masters of the Universe Bible p.48
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