Cheryl has a degree in Psychology and enjoys sharing nostalgic articles that bring back fond memories.
The power struggle
He-Man is a superhero whose cartoon show became a hit with children during the 1980s. The series takes place on Eternia, a magical planet of mystical powers. The main character is Prince Adam, the youngest son of Eternia's rulers, King Randor and Queen Marlena. Whenever Prince Adam holds the Sword of Power up high and proclaims loudly, "By the Power of Grayskull!" he is transformed into He-Man who is endowed with marvelous secret powers that make him the most powerful man in the universe. Along with his close allies, Battle Cat, Orko, Teela, The Sorceress, and Man at arms, He-Man uses his special abilities to defend Eternia from.his nemesis Skeletor. This character's main goal is to conquer Castle Grayskull (from which He-Man obtains his power). If Skeletor were ever to be successful, he would have enough power to rule all of Eternia and possibly the entire universe. He is cunning, crafty, and deceptive but always loses in the end.
Mattel released the original He-Man action figure in 1982; The ABC network was approached, but turned down the idea of a cartoon, based on this toy. The series He-Man and the Masters of the Universe debuted in September 1983 through barter syndication and became the first syndicated show that was based on a toy. I recall my son watching on what is now the Fox network and also on WGN. By 1984, the cartoon was seen on 120 stations in the United States and in more than 30 other countries. This was during the days of Saturday morning cartoons when children were glued to their television sets. He-Man marked a milestone as, for the first time in years, a cartoon series was not censored and could feature a muscular superhero who was allowed to actually hit his opponents. There actually were more wrestling moves that He-Man actually landing a punch, and he actually did not use his sword very often. Most of the time He-Man picked up his enemies and tossed them away instead of hitting them.
The He-Man cartoon endured some controversy because it advertised specifically to children. The show being produced in connection with the purpose of marketing a line of toys. Saturday mornings have been filled with toy advertisements for decades but this was the first time marketing and a cartoon were directly linked. I can remember my firstborn watching the show and asking for a He-Man action figure because of the commercials, but I never considered this to be a bad marketing strategy. I also recall waiting until Christmas Eve one year and found that all the He-Man action figures were sold out, so I purchased a She-Ra and my son enjoyed telling anyone who would listen that this was He-Man's sister. I remember my mother getting him the Castle Grayskull the following holiday season. The New Adventures of He-Man was released in the early 1990s and in 2002 the franchise was updated to appeal to a more contemporary audience.
Back in the day, many parents were not sure about boys playing with "girl toys" but I explained to my son that She-Ra was a television character and it did not matter if boys used their imaginations with her, as girls could do the same with He-Man. She-Ra was a superheroine in her own series and was first introduced with the intention of appealing to young girls in the same way He-Man was loved by little boys. This was in order to increase the marketing value of the Masters of the Universe. She-Ra was first introduced in the movie The Secret of the Sword. She was "Force Captain Adora of the Horde ruling Eternia".She turned out to be Princess Adora, who happened to be He-Man, AKA Prince Adam's long lost twin sister. If you are feeling nostalgic after reading this you can purchase He-Man and She-Ra memorabilia online. A Google search brings up vintage as well as newer items. Netflix is supposed to offer a revamped He-Man and the Masters of the Universe that should debut in 2021.