I’ve seen every episode of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe yet I’m not quite sure who the Masters of the Universe were supposed to be. His companions? His enemies? Skeletor and his bunch? It is kind of confusing. I suppose it does not matter because the show worked in spite of a lot of weird things.
I was a big collector of the toys so I guess this “advertisement” worked on me. Sure, it was designed to sell toys but deep down it was a great show that had a constant stream of good messages, meant to teach kids right or wrong. On the faraway planet of Eternia, Prince Adam lives with his family. One day he stumbles upon Castle Greyskull and meets the Sorceress, who gives him the Sword of Power and tells him it is his destiny to become He-Man, protector of Eternia.
Looking back, it was very strange I never questioned the fact He-Man looked exactly like Prince Adam and no one seemed to notice at all. At least Clark Kent wears glasses for Pete’s sake. Not here. Adam is just as buff as He-Man, with massive muscles that would make professional bodybuilders jealous. In fact, every character is super buff! Including arch fiend Skeletor and his cronies. Even the scientist guy that might pop up every so often, would be super huge. For no reason. It’s in the water in Eternia. It makes you super muscular, even without lifting weights. Like I said, the show was strange.
Skeletor was the perfect foil for He-Man. While the hero of this show was always so true and honest and trustworthy, the villain was always the polar opposite. Skeletor was the comic relief of the show, which is very weird for a TV program to have. People might claim Orko was there for comic relief but Skeletor was way funnier. His laugh, his freak outs when his cast of incompetent henchmen messed up even the simplest tasks… he’s really hilarious.
The villains and new heroes popped up whenever they had a new toy to sell, which for a nine year old was amazing. And so was the animation for that matter. Try to find a better drawn 2D animated series. The world was fully realized and deep.
At the end of each episode, one of the characters, usually He-Man, would break the fourth wall and speak directly to the audience about what we should have learned in that day’s episodes. Lessons about friendship being important, why not to lie or cheat, the value of hard work.
I learned a lot of positive moral lessons from watching He-Man. What other show can make that claim?