Cartoon Corner: He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983)
Updated: Nov 20
Show Name: He-man and the Masters of the Universe
Created by: Mattel, Inc. and Filmation
Written by: Larry DiTillio, Paul Dini, David WiseJ. Michael Straczynski, Doug Booth, Robby London, Brynne Stephens
Number of Episodes: 130
John Erwin as He-Man/Prince Adam, Ram Man, Beast Man, Faker, Webstor, Whiplash, Granamyr and others
Alan Oppenheimer as Battle Cat/Cringer, Man-At-Arms, Skeletor, Mer-Man, Buzz-Off, Roboto and others
Lou Scheimer (usually credited as Erik Gunden) as Orko, King Randor, Stratos, Man-E-Faces, Mekaneck, Zodac, Fisto, Sy-Klone, Moss Man, Lizard Man, Trap Jaw, Tri-Klops, Kobra Khan, Clawful, Jitsu, Spikor, Two Bad, Modulok and others
Linda Gary as Teela, Evil-Lyn, Queen Marlena, Sorceress of Castle Grayskull and others
George DiCenzo as various guest male voices (usually uncredited)
Erika Scheimer as various guest voices
When I was a kid, I loved this cartoon. I first started watching this cartoon after school. Then once the series was over, I watched it on the weekends as it would play on Saturday mornings on YTV (Youth Television). This cartoon just had that little something to come and get me. I own the TV series on DVD and I always go back to it from time to time to watch some of my favourite videos.
The cartoon is a typical good versus evil plotline. You have the forces of good which include Adam, Prince of Eternia, Cringer (Adams pet tiger), Teela, Man-at-Arms, Orko and the Sorceress, Eternia is ruled by King Randor and Queen Marlena. Then you have the forces of evil which are lead my none other than Skeletor. His only goal is to conquer Castle Greyskull and Eternia, which holds the Swords of Power.
In this version of He-Man, there is little back story on how He-Man became to be. All that the opening credits tell you is that one day Adam took his sword and said the magic words, "By the Power of Greyskull". In his transformation he also transforms his side kick cringer. Cringer becomes Battlecat. He seems to grow in size and brings out the confidence that Cringer lacks. Cringer is a very timid cat that does not like when he needs to change to Battlecat. He would rather eat and sleep.
There are only a handful of people that know that Prince Adam is He-Man. Man-at-Arms, The Sorceress, and Orko are the only ones that knows his secret.
Throughout the series you see He-Man defeating various bad guys and Skeletor.
For those who do not know. The whole reason that the animated show was created was essentially to sell more toys. This was a toy line, made to compete with Star Wars, which was the hottest toy at the time. So in order to sell the toys, they struck a deal with Filmation to create an animated series.
At the beginning there were minicomics that accompanied the toys. DC released quite a few issues of He-Man. In fact, n one of the comics, it is said that He-Man can rival the strength of Superman.
The show ended up being very popular. In fact, it has been so popular that there is still people that love the show to this day, even though it had a relatively short run. It only ran for 1.5 seasons. This series was the catalyst for the 1987 movie of the same name. There was also a new He-Man series in the early 2000's. Now there is talk that filming of the new movie would be starting in 2018. Many fans have been waiting for a new movie as the original movie was less than stellar.
What made this cartoon Memorable?
There are a few factors that made me love this show.
1) The Opening Theme
How can one not love the opening theme to this cartoon. The music is just so 80's and catchy. Once you hear it, it will be stuck in your head for a while.
He-Man Theme (1983)
2) The transformation from Prince Adam to He-Man
Every kid that watched this cartoon loved when Adam transformed. There was this rush of adrenaline for some reason. even to this day, this is the best part of the show.
He-Man / She-ra Transformation Compilation
There was one transformation in question that always stuck with me. It is when Teela is stuck in the Castle Greyskull Abyss and He-Man transforms. seeing that scene for whatever reason always stuck with me and it is still a very cool scene to this day.
He-Man Best Transformation
3) He-man and friends PSA
He-man like some other cartoons at the time (Gi Joe), would have PSA (Personal Service Announcements) at the end of every show. Basically they would take the main theme of the show and adapt it to the viewer at home. They did this as the show was geared towards kids and they needed to include it in the episodes.
Sample He-Man PSA
4) The Soundtrack
The soundtrack is amazing. I still love it to this day. It is simple yet effective. You know whey it is a light hearted moment to when doom is upon Eternia. Although it was the same 4 or 5 tracks over and over again, they were awesome and still are cool today.
Sample He-Man Soundtrack
Is this show perfect? Hell no. There are so many animation mistakes that you can make an hour video. However, as a kid, it captured my attention and I wanted to be He-Man. A guy that would do things in the name of good and that would always take the right decision.
Also what was amazing is that there was a new show every day. There was no 21 week and then take the rest of the year off. That was the reason why we ran from home to watch this.
Even years later, the show still holds up. Yes it can be cheesy in some parts but the transformations are still cool. If ever they could capture that in a film with live action actors, that would be so cool. Yes I am not even considering the 1987 movie with Dolph Lundgren.
Any of you liked this back in the day? What was your favourite part of this cartoon?