Jul 19, 2016
He-Man and the Masters of the Universe
First of all, the term "he-man" roiled me. Whether you measure it by chromosomes, hormones, a penis, or external affect, a man is a man. There's no degrees, there's no "he does this, so he's more of a man than you." Everything men do is what men do, which is everything except give birth.
This particular He-Man is just a run-of-the-mill 1980s sword-and-sorcery hunk, except he has the rather Biblical title Prince Adam of Eternia (Holy Garden of Eden, Batman!).
He then transforms, Shazam-like, into...well, exactly the same person. He just takes his clothes off and puts a Christian cross on his chest.
His main allies are:
1. Battle Cat
2. The Girl, aka Teela the "Warrior Goddess"
3. The Sorceress, who may be Teela, too. All women are the same woman, the Eternal Feminine.
4. Orko, a weird ghost-thing who acts as comic relief. If you need any.
But he also fights with the Masters of the Universe -- rather a hyperbolic title, since they really defend only Planet Eternia. They include characters with bizarre names like Man-E-Faces, Buzz Off, Snout Spout, Sir Laser-Lot, Wun-Dar, and Sy-Klone (I'm not making this up).
Ileena is drugged by the evil wizard Jarvon. Moral: Drugs are bad.
He-Man and Skeletor must team up to defeat the evil plant-monster Evilseed. Moral: Cooperation is good.
A villain named Darkdream blots out Eternia's sun. Moral: Nightmares can't hurt you.
Often the moral had only a very loose relationship to the story:
Skeletor steals Castle Greyskull. Moral: Overeating is bad.
He-Man is forced to fight as a gladiator. Moral: Books are better than tv.
Adam and Teela explore an old castle and awaken its residents from an enchanted sleep. Moral: You should go to bed at the same time each day.
Seriously, who was watching this?
In 1990, a new line of toys required a new series: .He-Man moves from Eternia to Primus, where struggles against Skeletor and his army of mutants.
Ready for the list of crazy names? Quakke, Slush Head, Gross, Butthead, Gleep, and Karatti.
In 2002, yet another series appeared, with another toyline. Back on Eternia, He-Man fights Skeletor and his Snake-People,
A new movie version has been announced several times over the years. Professional surfer Laird Hamilton and more recently Kellan Lutz have been mentioned as potential future He-Men.