Episode 021 – The Royal Cousin

In which we all try not to snigger at the name of Man-at-Arms’ new invention.

If you enjoyed the issues explored with Adam’s cousin Edwina a few episodes ago, but prefer for your sullen and selfish people to be young boys dressed in a leotard and a waistcoat, then this is the episode for you. (Of course, if you do have these preferences, please don’t get in touch. I scare easily.) The spoiled brat this week is Adam’s cousin Jeremy, who instantly starts being unpleasant to Adam, Man-at-Arms and Orko.

Jeremy starts playing with Man-at-Arms’ new Rock Softener (I assure you, this is not a euphemism) and destroys a table full of worthless-looking items. Adam and Man-at-Arms take this badly, leading Jeremy to start whinging to Orko about how he’s sick of grown-ups spoiling all his fun. As if to prove the point, Adam offloads Jeremy onto Ram-Man, of all people, and heads off to the Eternian plains to help Man-at-Arms test the Rock Softener.

Cousin 1

Ram-Man’s idea of entertainment for Jeremy is leaping repeatedly into a pool of water, and so it’s perhaps no surprise that Jeremy takes the first opportunity to nick off with a Sky Sled. Ram-Man seizes the back of it as Jeremy flies off, but Jeremy refuses to land, instead taking the Sky Sled and Ram-Man for a joyride out to the Eternian plains. By the time Jeremy relents and agrees to land, the Sky Sled is broken and he is unable to bring it down safely.

Luckily, Adam and Man-at-Arms are in this vicinity testing the Rock Softener, and once He-Man arrives on the scene, the situation is resolved. Jeremy is really excited to see He-Man, but He-Man just tells Jeremy off, and rightly so. Unbeknownst to our heroes, Evil-Lyn and Tri-Klops are also hanging out in the Eternian plains, and decide to use Jeremy’s dissatisfaction to get their grubby mitts on the Rock Softener.

Cousin 2

Once back at the Palace, Jeremy is sent to his room, but he instantly sneaks out and goes to the street market, where believe it or not, he meets Evil-Lyn in disguise. She buys him a Magneto Boomerang, and in return asks Jeremy to steal the Rock Softener. This deal goes down without a hitch, and when Man-at-Arms realises the Rock Softener is gone, he explains that it could be used to soften the walls of Castle Grayskull. Once he learns that this could lead to Eternia falling to the forces of evil, Jeremy confesses all.

Cousin 3

Evil-Lyn and Tri-Klops are already at Grayskull, rather inexplicably using the Rock Softener on the jawbridge, the only part of Grayskull that isn’t made of rock. This lapse in logic notwithstanding, it seems to be working. When Man-at-Arms and He-Man arrive, He-Man immediately blunders into the beam of the Rock Softener and starts getting softened, while Man-at-Arms contrives to get his foot stuck in a plant. Luckily, Jeremy is also on hand to use his Magneto Boomerang to retrieve the Rock Softener.

From here, it all goes down as expected: Man-at-Arms traps Evil-Lyn and Tri-Klops in his Porta-Prison, while He-Man pops inside Castle Grayskull to sort out some stupid growing glowing globe that was causing some bother. And finally, Jeremy apologises to everyone for being such a dick.

 

In today’s adventure…

Orko and He-Man tell us that all Jeremy really wanted was to be noticed, but they’re convinced that there’s no point in being noticed if no one likes what you’re doing. The best thing to do is to be polite and helpful, and then people will like you. This moral is almost on target, but the episode seemed more concerned with the benefits of listening to people when they tell you not to do things, as it might prove dangerous. Still, it makes relative sense.

 

Characters appearing

Prince Adam, Cringer, He-Man, Battle-Cat, Man-at-Arms, Teela, Ram-Man, the Sorceress, Orko, Skeletor, King Randor, Evil-Lyn, Tri-Klops, Jeremy and the man who sells the Magneto Boomerang to Evil-Lyn. This last character is one of the most complex characters to ever appear in this cartoon, and possibly in all of fiction. What are his motivations? His inner demons? How did his life take such strange turns, leading him to Eternia’s marketplace? I suspect we’ll never know.

Cousin 4

 

Excuse given for Prince Adam’s disappearance:

Adam changes into He-Man twice on screen this week, but in neither case is an excuse offered. However, as the episode begins, our heroes are discussing a very recent incident, in which Adam “was out on some royal business.”

 

Insults

Tri-Klops comes off worst this week, being called a “Fool” by both Skeletor and Evil-Lyn, and also being referred to as “Three eyes” by Evil-Lyn, which is undeniably accurate but probably not meant as a compliment. Evil-Lyn also receives a “Fool” from Skeletor. Jeremy also implicitly slags off Man-at-Arms by hinting that Duncan is a rubbish name.

Cousin 5

 

Does it have the Power?

Well, it’s not completely rubbish, but it’s not really a highlight either. We already went through this spoiled brat storyline with Edwina, and I’m pretty confident we’ll see it again at various points in the future. The main highlight is the immature laughs you can get from dialogue about the Rock Softener. My particular favourite was He-Man’s comment, “No more Mr Soft Guy,” after he had been released from the Softener’s beam. He should get some voice-over work for Viagra.

And with that, I’m going on holiday, so there’ll be no more reviews for 10 days or so!

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