15 September 2014

"Broom Takes A Break!"

Broom was one of my favorite characters from the She-Ra series, mainly due to the way in which the character was portrayed in the Filmation cartoon; so I always enjoyed stories that focused on him outside of the cartoon. Here we see a short story, originally published in issue eight of the UK Princess of Power comic, which was colored and republished for the UK Princess of Power special, titled "Broom Takes A Break!" In this story we see that there are a few disadvantages to being a living broom!


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

14 September 2014

Panini sticker album art #2

When I was a kid, one of my most prized possessions was the Masters of the Universe sticker album by Panini. I still remember the day my mother purchased the album for me. Aside from the fun of collecting the stickers themselves I thoroughly enjoyed looking at the Filmation-accurate illustrations that could be found on each and every page. I thought it would be a good idea to showcase those illustrations on this very Blog!

Here we see the opening panel for "Diamond Ray of Disappearance"...


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

09 September 2014

"Evil-Lyn in Waiting"

As He-Man and the Masters of the Universe was developed into a series, the staff writers at Filmation came up with a wealth of proposed story premises. Numerous episodes were never developed beyond the early stages. Showcased below is one of those abandoned episodes, alongside a title card that I have created to show what might have been. Please note that in some of these synopses Orko is still referred to as Gorpo, Evil-Lyn as Desira, and the Evil Warriors as the Masters of the Universe. The Sorceress does not appear to have been fully developed at this point either; with many references instead to the Spirit of Grayskull. Also, Stratos is a villain; much like he was in the early Mattel material. All of the original spellings (Tee-La, Beastman, etc.) are also retained for authenticity.

The unofficial cartoon guide to He-Man and the Masters of the Universe features many more abandoned episodes!

"Evil-Lyn in Waiting"
A mysterious, but beautiful woman arrives in the Royal Court, asking only to be the Queen's chambermaid. Everyone in the Royal Court is charmed by the sweetness and poise of this maiden. Only Teela is suspicious, but Prince Adam and Man-At-Arms attribute her doubts to jealousy. It is up to Teela to unmask this stranger as none other than Evil-Lyn who intends to help Skeletor gain access to the Royal Palace. Teela is able to thwart this invasion with an assist by He-Man!


* Legally I should say that Paul Dini did NOT write this episode. This is merely an example of how the episode title card might have looked.

01 September 2014

Panini sticker album art #1

When I was a kid, one of my most prized possessions was the Masters of the Universe sticker album by Panini. I still remember the day my mother purchased the album for me. Aside from the fun of collecting the stickers themselves I thoroughly enjoyed looking at the Filmation-accurate illustrations that could be found on each and every page. I thought it would be a good idea to showcase those illustrations on this very Blog!

Here we see the beautifully illustrated (and written) opening page...


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

29 August 2014

Origin of the warrior woman.

I mentioned recently that the more I examine each and every panel from the Masters of the Universe minicomic "The Tale of Teela!" the more I seem to consider it as my favorite minicomic of all time! The story is a beautiful culmination of the DC-produced minicomics that came before it. As a kid I had no idea that the comics were building to this moment, as for the longest time I had no idea that this minicomic even existed! It was not until a few years ago that I finally managed to buy a quality copy, and subsequently feature scans on this very Blog. Aside from the culmination aspect, there is the fantastic cast of both Heroic Warriors and Evil Warriors, as well as story which wonderfully details the origin of Teela and her strange and unique connection to the Goddess. Finally, and by no means least, Mark Texeira's artwork, as evidenced by this opening splash page is simply superb throughout!


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

24 August 2014

The power of Frosta!

The rarely-seen four story She-Ra Ladybird compilation book was interesting in that aside from including two new stories, it included two previously published stories in "Catra's Ice Palace" and "She-Ra and the Golden Goose", renamed "The Golden Goose" for this publication. The most striking thing about "Catra's Ice Palace" is that due to the size of this compilation book being a different format, the illustrations that accompanied the story were completely redrawn. Previously the story had been illustrated by Geoff Senior, but this time Glenn Steward illustrated it, to tie into the fact that the other three stories in the compilation were illustrated by him! Here is a pretty striking illustration showcasing the power Frosta can channel through her magical wand. I really like the way that only the lower halve line art of Adora and Frosta is visible, as their upper halves are hard to see through the sheer onslaught of freezing cold temperatures sent in the direction of Catra and Clawdeen.


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

17 August 2014

Feel my magic!

Lodar, from the Masters of the Universe minicomic "Slave City!" is one of my favorite guest villains from series. As a kid, and even to this day, I always wanted an action figure of this purple-armored and purple-skinned warrior. One of the most amusing things about the character is that his mistake was a happy accident. The writer of the minicomic Lee Nordling had been asked to write a story centered around the character of Zodac. However, Nordling and the artist Larry Houston had no idea that Zodac was an action figure. In short Lodar was their idea of what Zodac looked like. Thus when Mattel saw the completed minicomic they questioned why Zodac bore no resemblance to his action figure, surprising both Nordling and Houston that an action figure even existed! Nordling hurriedly went through the entire minicomic, and every time the name "Zodak" was referenced, the letters were altered to resemble "Lodar". Even his name was a happy accident!


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

15 August 2014

Slushhead flees!

Here are three action-packed illustrations by Bruce Timm from "The Revenge of Skeletor!", a minicomic from The New Adventures of He-Man toyline! The third panel of Slushhead swimming towards the reader, with Hydron in the Astrosub in pursuit, is wonderfully structured, and looks like something out of the Marvel comic books of the sixties. There are two things this minicomic does which we never really saw featured in the animated series. Firstly, we see the Astrosub go underwater, a feature rarely used in the cartoon. And secondly, we see Slushhead swim away at great speed, again something rarely seen in the cartoon!


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

11 August 2014

FILMATION ART: The Hive interior.

For the last sixteen years I have collected He-Man and She-Ra animation artwork. As a result I have amassed a pretty large collection! Here I present a piece of original background artwork from the She-Ra episode "Assault On The Hive". As soon as I saw this background for sale I immediately recognized it from the ridiculously memorable scene in which He-Man orders Comet Cat to "fetch" Skeletor. This artwork was actually the background that both Filmation's He-Man and Skeletor appeared on for the last time! For some reason I just had to own this piece, even though I do not currently own the cels. I guess it is only a matter of time...


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

And here is how the background was used in the episode...

10 August 2014

A brief review #051 - "City Beneath the Sea"

As many of you will know, in 2010 I published The unofficial cartoon guide to He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. At 300+ pages the book features 700+ pieces of trivia, 460+ deleted scenes, 360+ examples of animation reuse, 380+ quotes, 50+ abandoned episodes, and a LOT more! It is the book that NO fan of the Filmation series can live without! BUY IT NOW!

As an incentive, here is my brief review and rating (as they appear in the book) for "City Beneath the Sea"...

The episode starts off with a great deal of promise, as we see the strained relationship between King Randor and Prince Adam once more. But as soon as the heroes begin their voyage only disappointment follows. There are numerous interesting story elements in this episode, such as the Pearl of Power, which are touched upon, but never explored. The above average action sequences, of which there are many, are what drive this episode along. However, after a while, the action sequences cannot sustain this episode and it soon becomes reliant on old story formulas. What this episode proves is that great writers, like Larry DiTillio, do not always get it quite right. 4/10

Now, may I ask; what is YOUR rating?

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