I don’t think there’s enough sci-fi fantasy stories. Beyond Thor, how many can you name (Star Wars doesn’t count)? I’m hard pressed to come up with any save for one, The New Adventures of He-Man. Like any boy my age, I grew up watching He-Man and the Masters of the Universe battle the evil forces of Skeletor. At the time, I enjoyed it but would quickly ditch it if something better was on. A few years later (better know as 1990), a new He-Man cartoon launched that completely flipped the script. He-Man was now in space.
He-Man, who now has pants, is brought to the future to help the people of Primus battle the mutants intent on conquering them. In the future, they’re all about the power of the good and the way of magic. Not knowing who was who, both He-Man and Skeletor were brought to the future, with the latter joining sides with the mutants. While we’re on the subject, the power of the good and the way of the magic? Really? I get there isn’t a lot of originality going on with naming things here, but they couldn’t crack open a thesaurus or something?
What I loved about this show was the balance of fantasy and sci-fi. Typically, one leads the other. It’s hard not to keep the fantasy element in play with a shirtless guy bringing a sword to a gun fight.
He-Man and Skeletor were both redesigned for the show. While Skeletor was fine, it’s He-Man’s redesign I enjoyed the most. As He-Man, though less ripped, he walked around shirtless, on spaceships, in space. Ditching his Prince Adam disguise, he became Adam the merchant, who dressed like a Celtic goat farmer. Gary Chalk voices He-Man with Doug Parker as Adam. It was nice having two different voices this time. Chalk will sound familiar to anyone who’s watched Beast Wars (Optimus Primal). My only complaint is Skeletor’s new voice from Campbell Lane. He sounded like he would threaten to do my taxes at any moment.
Replacing the Masters of the Universe were the Galactic Guardians, which included toy sellers like Flipshot, Hydron, Tuskador, and Rimjob. I may have made that last one up. Not to be outdone, they faced mutants like Flogg, Karatti (guess what he did), Optikk, and Butthead. I swear I didn’t make that last one up. Honest.
New Adventures was a fun show, though it only lasted 65 episodes. I have vivid memories of it, watching it before Disney Afternoon. While it’s not all golden, there’s plenty of fun to be had with some continuity thrown in as most of the episodes were written by Jack Olesker. Plus, the PSA’s were amazing, including such jewels as ‘not immediately panicking’ or ‘don’t dive head first into murky water.’
Again, I’m all about sci-fi fantasy, and this scratches that itch. It’s certainly not perfect, but it’s better than Silverhawks, Joe Patrick. Most of the episodes can be found on YouTube. Give the first five a watch, the opening arc is fun.
What did you think of Space He-Man? What other sci-fi fantasy stories can you think of? Ideas for topics? Comment below!
I barely got home in time to watch this show.