It’s been a couple of years since we visited Eternia, Part 2 of Masters of the Universe: Revelation came out in June 2022. Things have obviously changed and the Horde teaser in “Comes with Everything You See Here” from Part 2 has rebooted itself into this story with Motherboard and much more beyond. Netflix is releasing another set of five episodes, called Masters of the Universe: Revolution, with all the favorites returning and some very exciting new characters joining in!
This is a follow-up series to Masters of the Universe: Revelation, so if you haven’t seen that yet, give it a watch before starting this show later this month. As teased in the initial announcement, this is a fight between Magic and Technology, and it’s intricately laced throughout the episodes. Old-school fans will be delighted to see Hordak so prominently placed and wonderfully voiced by the talented television veteran, Keith David.
[Warning: Light spoilers from Masters of the Universe: Revolution are below!]
Long live He-Man and the Masters of the Universe
Monarchs live and reign, and King Randor (Diedrich Bader) has finally come to the end of his tenure as King of Eternia. It’s a double struggle for Prince Adam (Chris Wood) as he has to wrestle with maintaining the status quo, while living the double life as He-Man.
Simultaneously, he’s bound by the weight of the crown and its kingdom, intending to do the best for the subjects of Eternia. Teela (Melissa Benoist) is also under duress as Sorceress, some of her duties bearing too much weight down on her. Within the first episode, each of them is sent on a journey that separates them from one another for a while.
While our protagonists are busy getting sorted and powered up, there’s still Skeletor (Mark Hamill) fussing around and refusing to stay down. He remains a thorn in the side of our heroes and is currently conspiring with Hordak to get his revenge. The title is Revolution, after all, and there’s quite a shift in the landscape of power and the environment as a whole. The mentions of technology didn’t emphasize how much we would actually receive. Seeing Skeletor’s technical upgrades was fascinating and provided some cool weapons and designs on his armor.
New voices and familar faces from Masters of the Universe: Revelation
The rest of the cavalry remains in the wings and ready to take up arms alongside He-Man/Prince Adam. Even though they are important characters, it seemed as if we spent less time with them compared to Revelation. This isn’t a bad thing as the focus of He-Man’s and Teela’s journey required them to accomplish these things alone, to an extent.
Then there’s the setup for the inevitable showdown between Hordak and the Heroes of Castle Grayskull. The invasion from the Horde is a calculated one that takes time to arrange; a massive siege that is severely overwhelming for the forces of Eternia.
Since this is only five episodes, the story moves along at a decent pace while the pieces fall into place. It’s eerily similar to Revelation in that it builds up our heroes and villains for an epic showdown across two episodes. The resolution may divide some viewers with some of the decisions, but the stinger at the end will, at the very least, give viewers a reason to tune in again, should they continue the story.
Keith David has been a constant in my life, and his rendition of Hordak was brilliant. Hordak’s machinations throughout the episodes were spectacles in strategic superiority. Only someone with a deep voice and caliber of line delivery could have portrayed this character so well. It wasn’t only the voice work, but a couple of mic-drop-level moments that showed why he has an empire at his command.
A second casting that caught my ear was John De Lancie as Granamyr the Dragon. Not much can be revealed ahead of the release, but the moments with Granamyr were few but well spent. Another unreal casting was William Shatner but like the previous one, it’s much better once you hear it for yourself. A neat insert was the return of Meg Foster who voices Motherboard, Foster had previously portrayed Evil-Lyn in the 1987 cult classic Masters of the Universe live-action film.
Highlights and bumps in the road for Revolution
There were indeed a couple of decisions I found odd within this series, one being a new design used for Teela. It felt like it was purely fan service and nothing else of gain came from it, as it was discarded shortly after. Also, the series titles should have been swapped, this one felt more like Revelation while the first season was more of a Revolution. After watching through the episodes, you’ll see what I mean by this sentiment.
The animation in this Netflix series remains top-notch and I may even say an improvement! More than once I noticed some anime-inspired sequences, such as a nice parallel to the iconic Sailor Moon suit transformations. The battles continued on with a mix of powers, fists, and weapons which the Masters of the Universe catalog has a wide variety to cycle through. The expansion of technology into the fights was only a boon to an already visually appealing series. This addition made for some unique armaments and upgrades that remain in line with the rest of the design schemes.
Final thoughts on Masters of the Universe: Revolution
Overall, I enjoyed the series, as it hasn’t strayed at all from what made me enjoy Masters of the Universe: Revelation. The effect-heavy fights, uncovering mysteries, and all-star cast all did their parts to deliver another entertaining set of episodes. The ending does leave me a little anxious as it undoes some fundamentals of this universe. I’m no purist or long-time fan set in my ways either, they are simply a couple of decisions that I think are a tad unrefined.
The short episode lengths make it a breeze to watch in one evening. It won’t take long to see the culmination of Technology vs Magic wielded by its respective Champions.
Masters of the Universe: Revolution releases on January 25th, 2024 on Netflix. Are you going to check out this new animated series? Let us know on social media @mycosmiccircus in the official Cosmic Circus Discord, where we have channels for discussion of He-Man and much, much more!