Masters of the Universe: Revelation can’t help some fond puns on the classic original series — as He-Man finally puts the Sword of Power to use.
Kevin Smith’s Masters of the Universe: Revelation series can’t resist poking fun at problems faced by the original cartoon. Technically, the Masters of the Universe franchise started out as a range of action figures – but it was undeniably the Filmation animated series that transformed He-Man into a worldwide phenomenon. It’s easy to forget the original show featured a lot of talent, with writers including Paul Dini (more famous for Batman: The Animated Series) and J. Michael Straczynski (Babylon 5).
A tremendous amount of thought went into the world-building for He-Man & the Masters of the Universe, and characters were designed to be original spins on figures from classic mythology. It was, at heart, a sword-and-sorcery action series – but it never forgot it was aimed at children. Stories never got too dark, the action was never too brutal, and every episode ended with a moral lesson of some kind. Although He-Man wielded the Sword of Power, he used it like a hammer, knocking things down with it rather than cutting or stabbing.
Kevin Smith’s Masters of the Universe: Revelation is intended as a mature relaunch of the franchise, and the opening episode can’t resist poking fun at the classic original cartoon. Revelation’s version of Skeletor finally goads He-Man into stabbing him through with the Sword of Power, with He-Man clearly intending to kill his adversary, and the Lord of Destruction can’t resist noting He-Man is finally using the blade for what it was intended. The comment is sure to amuse viewers who are familiar with the 1980s animated series.
In an additional layer of irony, it turns out the Sword of Power is actually the key to unlocking all the secrets of Castle Grayskull – and Skeletor tricked He-Man into putting the key in the lock, albeit through his own body. Thus Skeletor’s quip carries an entertaining double meaning, in that He-Man is using the Sword of Power for a purpose that had long been forgotten in the mists of time.
This isn’t the only time Masters of the Universe: Revelation reflects on its roots with a fond joke, though. In a later episode, Teela (voiced by Sarah Michelle Gellar) recalls a battle between Skeletor and He-Man that led to the villain being tossed into the ocean, and He-Man couldn’t resist the comment, “You’re all wet, Skeletor.” As Teela reflects, so many of He-Man’s jokes were like those of a child – the humor of a prince who’d never quite grown up, the humor of a TV show with jokes aimed at children, not adults.
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