The good, the bad, the plotholes…
I know I put it in the thumbnail, but I can’t stress this enough. If you have NOT seen it and care about spoilers, do NOT read this until you have seen it.
I will be discussing the entire season, that’s both parts, my feelings on it, and a final review.
So, if you’re ready, click and let’s get started.
If you want to see my review of the first episode of the first part, you can find it below.
Keep in mind, the summary will not go episode by episode. It will, but concurrently. You’ll see.
From the onset, I went into this with an objective eye. I wanted to see for myself what all the bitching whining and complaining was about, and why the circles I run in on Twitter were as divided as Berlin before the wall came down.
The first half of the season started off with a bang, literally. Adam sacrificed himself to save Eternia. Skeletor and Adam seemed to have died, leaving the people left to sort out the pieces.
Adam’s secret was revealed, leaving those who did not know angry as well as reeling from the death. Teela was ordered to take Duncan out of the city as it was decreed he was exiled. Teela flat out refused, refused the order, refused to listen to anyone present, and, in her grief and rage, left the kingdom. That’s all I will say on that matter as I covered it in more detail in the video.
The rest of the first season was her running with Andra and being paid for jobs to retrieve magic artifacts. They were paid to go into Snake Mountain and then Castle Greyskull. It wasn’t until they were in Greyskull that they learned the sword can only be reforged after the two pieces were retrieved, one half in Subternia (hell), the other in Preternia (heaven).
The fellowship of Andra, Teela, and Evil-Lyn was born. It would be added to in another episode when they go to collect Duncan. Duncan refuses at first but agrees to go to Greyskull. It is here we pick up Orko and Roboto.
Subternia was a test of Teela’s resolve and her conquering or, in this case, embracing her fear to defeat Scare Glow and get the dark half of the sword. We caught a glimpse of the power within her in Subternia. We also heard of Orko’s backstory and saw a bonding moment between him and Evil-Lyn.
This was the first time we could see that Evil-Lyn had a soft side, another layer to the witch. We also learned that Orko was ridiculed by his parents and peers to the point of not believing in himself.
We saw the death of Orko as he saved everyone from Scare Glow.
Preternia taught us that heroes can choose their form when they enter there. We see the first, Greyskull himself. They joke about how Adam stayed in his small form, but Adam has never seen himself as anything other than Adam. We learn that Mossman is there as well.
When they get the second half of the sword from Adam, it is here that Adam realizes he needs to go back, putting his afterlife in danger. Roboto reforges the sword, and all parties return to Greyskull. After the magic is returned, Skeletor makes his reappearance, stabs Adam through the side, steals the sword, and transforms into an all-powerful being. Thus ends part one.
Episode 1 has us seeing the origin of Teela’s birth and how the Sorceress got her powers. They also show Duncan as Teela’s birth father and the Sorceress cutting all ties to gain the powers and protect the secrets.
It also has us in the Castle present-day with Skeletor trying to figure out why the power fixates one thing or person. He is drunk with power. This leads to a fight and the Sorceress teleporting Adam, Teela, Cringer, and Andra to the Palace.
As the episodes progress, we see Teela use healing powers on Adam and Skeletor to turn people into undead, including two of their friends.
When Adam tries to use his powers without the sword, he becomes a rage-filled, barbarian the size of He-Man with no control. Andra and Teela agree they have to get Adam away from Skeletor before the city is destroyed.
Teela uses teleportation to transport them elsewhere, and they end up in the Mystic Mountains where Teela admits she was being called there.
During this time, we see the abusive interplay between Skeletor and Evil-Lyn. In my opinion, it can be summed up with these:
We find out later Evil-Lyn is trying to find out how to forcefully steal the power from Skeletor. Skeletor Shows Evil-Lyn the entirety of the universe and the upcoming convergence. While he sees raw power, she only sees emptiness, chaos, pain, and despair. This changes her immensely.
In a seductive ploy, she gets Skeletor to power down, and she steals the sword transforming herself. She then, while making all the planet’s inhabitants watch, destroys Preternia.
Back to the rage machine… Adam hears a noise and runs toward it with Cringer, Teela, and Andra in tow. This is where they find the forward camp of Randor.
Adam gets bound by ropes and chains. Randor recognizes his son and apologizes to him. He also tells him how proud he is of Adam. This causes Adam to power down. Soon after, Marlana appears and runs to Adam. There is a brief cold exchange between Randor and Marlana.
After Skeletor is cast out, he finds himself in Camp Dread, the war camp for Randor’s forces. He relents to join forces with Adam. In the meantime, Teela tries her best to contact all of Eternia but thinks it doesn’t work.
Live reacts on Twitter.
They then have a plan to smuggle Teela into Greyskull where she can claim the mantle of Sorceress and defeat Evil-Lyn. This works, but not until after Evil-Lyn summons the forces of Subternia to fight for her, inadvertently reviving Orko at the same time. He-Man defeats Skeletor and helps Teela restore Preternia.
The epilogues show Evil-Lyn leaving behind the staff Skeletor gave her, and also Skeletor back in Snake Mountain where he tries to attack Motherboard. the bird transforms with a hologram of Hordak above its head. It fades to black as nanites are being fed into Skeletor.
I did NOT include everything, but those are the major points.
Teela’s growth was rushed but, overall, well done. There were points where I felt it to be a little Mary Sue-ish. I understood her mother’s spirit guiding her to heal Adam. I got her struggle to call of Eternia, but the teleportation when she had only JUST heard the words for the first time was a stretch for me.
She had human reactions to find out she was left in the dark. I had no issues with her being upset with Adam when they reunited. She needed a question answered. She was finally able to set all that aside.
I like how he was written. This was supposed to be about Teela, and it was, but the fact that Adam only ever saw himself as Adam speaks volumes. It tells me he believed he was much more than just He-Man.
The exchange where his father apologizes to him showed me there was unresolved trauma due to the emotional abuse and pressure Randor had placed on him. All Adam wanted was validation from his father. He got it. It was a well-written moment.
This is perhaps the most growth I have seen in a secondary character in a long while. He went from total asshole to humble and remorseful. It is a shame Adam had to die to make it happen, but he did grow and learn.
Adam, Randor, and Marlana…
The death of a child can test the BEST of relationships, but when you throw a secret into the mix, things get sticky. This is what happened here. When Adam returned, he found out his parents had grown apart due to Marlana not telling Randor Adam’s secret. I am glad they resolved this plothole. I was worried they would gloss RIGHT over the thing.
From Palace Screw-up to Oracle extraordinaire, his growth was wonderful to see. When he finally shook off the years of self-doubt and stopped listening to voices of his past, he really came into his own. Love to see it.
The backstory they gave her provided insight into why she stuck with Skeletor for so long. She had a hard life, and Skeletor rescued her from all that. Unfortunately, he walked her right into years of emotional, verbal, and physical abuse as Skeletor only gave a shit about himself and killing He-Man.
That is why the symbolism of this is so powerful. She’s left the shackles of Skeletor behind and her abusive past, and she is now starting a new life. She wasn’t truly evil. She was just a product of her surroundings.
The Origin of the Sorceress
In the original, she had a short series on how she became the sorceress, and it was nothing like this. There was no Duncan. Her lonely life was due to the choice she made to become the sorceress. It had nothing to do with Duncan.
Teela’s father was only mentioned as a warrior. This COULD have been Duncan, but they always said she was adopted by Duncan. This would not be the case if he was her true father.
She was found by Duncan in the nest of Zoar as the bird was trying to fend off Merman’s men from stealing the baby.
They completely retconned this.
Anyone can wield the sword?
What’s the point in having a champion if anyone can pick up the sword and say the words? Skeletor did it. Evil-Lyn did it. This means anyone, good or bad, can wield the power. There is not a prerequisite. This does not sit well with me.
Art and Animation…
I found this to be consistent all the way through the season. It was smooth, though some camera angles disoriented me. The scenes were well framed.
The actors did their jobs admirably. although Randor’s apology fell a but flat with me.
Loved the music. I have no complaints.
For the most part, it was well-written. They told the unfinished story of Teela, which is what they set out to do. That’s all they ever said they were going to do, and they did it.
The main plot they sought to complete was completed well, rushed but well. Then again, how would you fit all that in ten episodes?
Four shots out of five. I really enjoyed it.