Episode 31 – The Reluctant Wizard

In which our heroes persist in bothering a dude who just wants to be left alone.

The episode opens with Madame Razz and Broom being chased through the sky by a Horde Trooper on a flying machine. They are saved when a tree fires an energy bolt at the Trooper. This strikes them as unusual, even for Etheria, so they head straight to Whispering Wood and tell Adora and Bow all about it. Madame Razz reckons that they have discovered the secret home of a wizard who, according to legend, has created his own entire world inside a tree.

Reluctant 1
Bow: “So, Madame, must have been some pretty potent mushrooms this time.”

Adora thinks this wizard sounds like a promising ally, and turns into She-Ra to go to ask Light Hope about it. Light Hope is his usual useless self, however, offering merely the advice that the wizard hates visitors, which I generally think is a given for people who retreat from the world to live inside a tree. She-Ra decides to disregard this advice, and sets off with Bow, Kowl and Madame Razz to see the wizard and his amazing tree.

En route, the party come up against a wide variety of silly visitor deterrents, such as a massive chasm, a wall of fire and a walking cactus. These distractions do not prove to be terribly diverting, however, and our heroes soon get the privilege of talking directly to the wizard’s tree. Because they start from a ridiculously adversarial position, they are quickly transported inside the tree and forced to do battle with an army of stupid mud monsters.

Reluctant 3
She-Ra: “My dates often do get overly handsy.”

She-Ra apologises for being rude, and the wizard finally shows himself. He explains that he has hidden away because people think he’s ugly. Frankly, he’s right, but on the other hand, I’ve seen uglier specimens on the Southwestern Railways London to Portsmouth service, so things could be worse. Still, our heroes have no success in their attempts to persuade the wizard to join them against the Horde, thanks in no small part to Bow’s efforts (see Oh No, Bow! below).

At this point, having heard the tree story from the unfortunate Horde Trooper at the beginning of the episode, Hordak, Shadow Weaver and Catra arrive and attack the wizard’s tree. Team She-Ra instantly leap to the wizard’s defence, and defeat the Horde in a selection of humiliating and/or implausible ways. Countering the viewer’s expectations, once the battle is won, the wizard does not agree to help the Rebellion – though, admittedly, he doesn’t rule it out either.

Reluctant 4
Wizard: “Why would I join the Rebellion? I have a lovely place to live as it is.”

 

In today’s adventure…

Ha! I’m getting wise to your sneaky ways, Loo-Kee. The animators reused an establishing shot of Whispering Wood today, and it happened to be that one which features Loo-Kee’s nose poking out from behind a tree. So basically, I found him because I recognised the background shot in which he has previously appeared. I think I may have been watching too much of this cartoon.

Anyway, Loo-Kee’s message for us this week is that if we can’t say anything nice, we shouldn’t say anything at all. Perhaps anticipating that this advice would result in children simply refusing to talk to each other, he then goes on to add that we should probably just say something nice. In other words, Loo-Kee tells us to lie.

 

Character checklist

Most of the familiar faces show up today – Adora, Spirit, She-Ra, Swift Wind, Madame Razz, Broom, Bow, Kowl, Light Hope, Loo-Kee, Hordak, Catra, Shadow Weaver, the wizard, and of course those ubiquitous Horde Troopers.

Reluctant 5
Madame Razz: “Just so you know, Bow, me and Kowl loathe you.”

 

Excuse given for Adora’s disappearance

“It seemed like a better idea for me to come instead,” says She-Ra, when Bow whinges that Adora isn’t coming with them to the wizard’s home.

 

Insults

Catra calls She-Ra a “miserable insect”, and the wizard refers to She-Ra, Bow, Madame Razz, Broom and Kowl as “weaklings”. He also takes the time to address Bow to say, “You aren’t as smart as you look.” I’m sure I can’t be the only one who doesn’t think Bow looks particularly smart in the first place, so this is pretty insulting.

Reluctant 6
Wizard: “Good God, Bow, you really are dim.”

 

Oh No, Bow!

There’s a genuinely entertaining scene in which She-Ra, Madame Razz, Broom and Kowl all make Bow dig a massive hole for himself concerning whether he likes Adora or She-Ra better. Bow proves completely incapable of dealing with this unfair exercise in comparisons, and it presumably comes as an enormous relief to him when an earthquake starts.

In addition to this, when the wizard says, “I’m really ugly, so I hid myself away,” Bow responds with, “Yes, I can understand that.” Seriously, Bow? This is the best pep talk you can manage? No wonder the wizard tells our heroes to get lost.

Reluctant 2
Bow: “Mummy! Help! I’ve tied my shoelaces together again!”

 

Does it have the Power?

It’s pretty good in that it looks like it’s building to the all-too-common conclusion in which the wizard would agree to help the Rebellion after they help him defeat the Horde, and then yanks the rug out from under us by simply having him announce, “I’ll think about it!” and turn invisible. Whether we see him again in the future or not, it’s a nice and pretty rare example of Etheria not being a completely black-and-white place. In addition, I’m happy to report that the dialogue is snappy, the animation is fun, and it’s well-paced. I think we have a winner here.

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Episode 30 – Play It Again, Bow

In which Bow does indeed play it again, though he definitely shouldn’t have.

Adora is playing hide and seek with a pair of ridiculously delighted Twiggets, but is mercifully distracted from this soul-sapping pastime when She-Ra’s services are needed to save an old man from a runaway wagon. The old man introduces himself as Fritt the Bottle Man, because he collects old bottles from villages. Unfortunately, the Horde have recently stolen his pack animal, True Blue, and he’s now finding it difficult to travel between the villages.

Play 1
Fritt: “I’m certainly not crazy. Don’t even suggest it.”

She-Ra leaps at the chance to escape the hide and seek more permanently, so offers the help of the Rebellion in recovering True Blue. Fritt happily comes along to the rebels’ camp, where he entertains the Twiggets with stupid stories and then asks Bow to sing a song. If Fritt did this in my house, I wouldn’t invite him back again. Bow, of course, is only too happy to oblige with one of the most unholy rackets I’ve ever had the misfortune to hear – and yes, that does include Spice Up Your Life.

Things get even worse when seconds later, Madame Razz shows up, and it emerges that Fritt is her ex-lover, conjuring up a whole world of mental imagery that I really didn’t need. I’m not entirely sure why the affair ended in the first place, but suffice it to say that the rest of the episode meanders pointlessly towards a reconciliation between Madame Razz and Fritt, via several less than amusing comedy set pieces.

Play 2
Madame Razz: “Don’t come near me, Fritt Stick.”

Fritt takes Bow and the Twiggets to see what he does with the bottles he collects; it turns out that Fritt has built a monument to freedom with them. He tries to claim that the bottles represent the people of Etheria, but frankly the whole thing looks essentially like a bottle-crazed loon has got into the glass recycling plant and indulged his passion for building demented structures. Bow pretends to be impressed, but I think he’s secretly pleased when Catra shows up proclaiming her intention to destroy the monument.

In the meantime, Adora and Kowl skulk off to a village to recover True Blue, and find him being forced to walk on a treadmill, for no particularly apparent reason. In order to rescue him, Adora becomes She-Ra and performs some unnecessary acrobatics before beating up some Horde Troopers. She then flies off on Swift Wind to attend to Catra and the potential glass bottle monument destruction, while Kowl and True Blue follow at a more sedate pace.

Play 3
Catra: “This looks like a rubbish version of the Sagrada Familia.”

On the one hand, She-Ra is too late, since Catra has started destroying the monument. On the other hand, Catra has elected to destroy it one bottle at a time, and since I estimate there’s about six billion bottles in the structure, this is going to take her a while. Needless to say, She-Ra arrives on the scene pretty smartish, but Catra threatens to shoot the rebels if She-Ra makes a move towards saving the bottles. This is an unexpectedly smart move, though it does rather rest on the notion that She-Ra wouldn’t want Bow and Madame Razz to get shot.

She-Ra doesn’t care for this ultimatum, and defeats Catra and her Troopers through a very stupid method that defies description. Unfortunately, Catra manages to get off one good shot before her ignominious exit from the episode, and nearly causes the monument to collapse. If you care even vaguely, She-Ra saves it, by propping it up with a cart, and then Madame Razz magically transforms the entire monument into crystal. This is ostensibly to make it so that the Horde can’t destroy it, but I wouldn’t mind betting it’s at least partly to make it less offensively ugly. Finally, Bow concludes the episode by singing that bloody awful song again, even less tunefully than before.

Play 4
Bow: “Just recording my audition to join Mumford & Sons.”

 

In today’s adventure…

It’s one of those weeks where Loo-Kee evidently wants to be found, since the camera lingers on him for about 15 seconds while he sits in a tree by the side of the road. He tries to suggest that the many colours of bottle in the ridiculous monument represent the many colours of people, and suggests that – just like the monument – we can become stronger when we all live and work together. He does not mention that when the monument became stronger by being turned into crystal, it also assumed a uniformity of colour, which I do not think is the message he was trying to convey.

 

Character checklist

Today’s visit to Etheria gives us a chance to spot Adora, Spirit, She-Ra, Swift Wind, Bow, Madame Razz, Broom, Kowl, Glimmer, Fritt, True Blue, the Twiggets, Loo-Kee, Catra, and – as always – a truckload of Horde Troopers.

Play 5
Kowl: “Don’t look at me so seedily, you weird horse.”

 

Excuse given for Adora’s disappearance

Yet again, it’s two transformations and no excuses. Adora is really rubbish at this.

 

Insults

A Horde Trooper addresses True Blue as a “broken-down nag”, while Catra calls She-Ra a “fool”, and elaborates with “hopeless fools” for Fritt, Madame Razz, Broom, Bow and the Twiggets.

 

Oh No, Bow!

I think a very special mention has to be given here for Bow’s dreadful song. I bet the voice actor was horrified when he got the script for this episode. He must have known that he can’t sing for toffee.

 

Does it have the Power?

Hmm, let’s see. Bow singing twice, in an episode all about Madame Razz’s love life, also featuring a lunatic who has wasted his entire life building a demented sculpture out of bottles. Do you think it has the Power? In case you’re unsure, allow me to explain: NO IT DOESN’T.

Episode 29 – The Price of Freedom

In which He-Man lies around in a cave.

It’s like the good old days at the start of this episode. We begin with Prince Adam and Orko out for a spin in the Wind Raider, having one of those frequent inconsequential arguments about whether Orko has tidied his room or not. The Sorceress then contacts Adam, demanding he come to Castle Grayskull immediately. On arrival, the Sorceress informs Adam that she has picked up some kind of distress signal from She-Ra, so Adam leaps through the magic portal to Etheria. You’ll be pleased to know that he does not take Orko with him.

Freedom 1
Orko: “Adam, didn’t you get the memo about our series being finished?”

Adam arrives on Etheria in the middle of a devastated village, and She-Ra explains to him that the Horde have launched an all-out war on the inhabitants. Adam decides that He-Man might be a little more useful in this scenario, and metamorphoses. With Horde Troopers surrounding them, our heroes evacuate the village and take the people to hide in some mines. From there, they watch as the Horde burn down the remains of the village.

Freedom 2
She-Ra: “Adam, haven’t you got someone else you should be?”

The villagers explain that, even though they are sorry to have lost their homes and possessions, they prefer to have their freedom. He-Man seems to have difficulty understanding this concept, but that’s presumably because he’s playing dumb so the villagers can explain to the audience. Once he finally gets it, he sends She-Ra off to Bright Moon to fetch some more rebels to help defeat the Horde army, while he stays behind to defend the villagers.

He-Man does a pretty poor job of the defence, though; Hordak unveils an enormous freeze cannon and shoots him with it. As well as paralysing He-Man, this demolishes the entrance to the mine and seals the villagers inside. Considering that he has successfully made an example of the villagers, Hordak concludes his work is done, and orders the army back to the Fright Zone.

Freedom 3
Hordak: “There’s nothing mental about putting my face on this massive cannon. No, no. Not mental at all.”

Inside the mine, the villagers start complaining because the air is running out, which seems fair enough. They come perilously close to turning against She-Ra, who they note is not there to save them. Luckily, the head villager gives a rousing speech about how freedom is precious, but has to be worked for, and essentially means that they must be able to count on themselves, without always relying on help from He-Man and She-Ra. Suitably invigorated, the villagers set to work digging themselves out of the mine.

They are successful in digging to the surface, but in so doing, they cause a cave-in. He-Man fights off his paralysis and holds the roof up long enough for the villagers to escape. She-Ra finally gets back at this stage, notably without bringing any help, and helps He-Man to stabilise the mine shaft, before making some feeble jokes at which He-Man grins goofily. Afterward, She-Ra welcomes the villagers to join the Rebellion and live in Whispering Wood.

Freedom 5
She-Ra: “He-Man, why are you meditating in front of these planks of wood?”

 

In today’s adventure…

I’d assumed I’d missed Loo-Kee, since he’s normally towards the beginning of episodes, but there he was in Whispering Wood about a minute from the end. I feel very proud of myself for finding him. Instead of giving us one of the more abstract morals about the importance of freedom, Loo-Kee opts for the more prosaic “don’t play with matches or lighters”. This is presumably because the message about freedom was repeatedly rammed down our throats during the episode, so the writers didn’t feel it needed yet another outing from Loo-Kee.

 

Character checklist

This one’s a little unusual, in that Adora doesn’t show up at all. She-Ra’s here though, as are Prince Adam, He-Man, Swift Wind, Bow, Kowl, Orko, the Sorceress, loads of villagers, Loo-Kee, Hordak, Mantenna and the inevitable Horde Troopers.

Freedom 6
She-Ra: “Don’t even try to upstage me, villagers.”

 

Excuse given for Adora and Adam’s disappearances

As noted above, Adora doesn’t even feature this week, and no one sees Adam on Etheria before he becomes He-Man, so there’s definitely no need for an excuse today.

 

Insults

He-Man calls the Horde Troopers “tin cans”, which is a pretty common insult for them. More entertainingly, Hordak disparagingly refers to He-Man as “Eternia’s golden boy”.

 

Oh No, Bow!

When She-Ra arrives at Bright Moon and tells the rebels they must hurry as quickly as possible to the village, Bow instantly chirps up to offer to fly back on Swift Wind with She-Ra. Perhaps intuiting that Bow has clocked that this would mean he’d get to lay his grubby hands on her hips, She-Ra politely if forcefully declines.

Freedom 4
He-Man: “Quick word of advice, Bow: stay away from my sister.”

 

Does it have the Power?

It’s definitely better than He-Man’s last visit to Etheria, though that’s not saying a lot. Rather than damn it with faint praise, I’ll come out and say that it was pretty good. It was a great message for the villagers to rely on themselves to get out of their situation, rather than sitting back and waiting for He-Man and She-Ra to do the work for them – even if the plot mechanics to get them to that point were a little creaky. He-Man being shot with the freeze cannon was fair enough, but She-Ra flying off to get help and then returning once the danger was past, without actually bringing help with her, seemed perhaps too obviously a plot device to get her out of the way. Other than that minor complaint, though, this was a fairly enjoyable episode with a decent message. Good fun.

Episode 28 – Bow’s Farewell

In which Bow and She-Ra go utterly mad.

Adora finds Bow in a village, trying to teach a Twigget a song before embarking on a boring physics lesson about sound frequencies. Unfortunately, this village is known Horde territory, and Adora is concerned that Bow will be found and captured. It seems she is right to be concerned, since a Horde patrol shows up pretty soon. On the other hand, the patrol is singularly incapable of capturing Bow or Adora, especially not when She-Ra makes an entrance.

Bow's Farewell 1
Bow: “What do you mean, I have literally no idea what sound frequencies are?”

The next five minutes are given over to a long fight between She-Ra and Bow on one side, and Catra and some Horde Troopers on the other. Despite the writers managing to make Catra act even more mental than usual, this is unfortunately rather dull. Eventually, our heroes escape into Whispering Wood, at which point Catra hisses that the Horde has plans to deal with the Rebellion. There’s a chance that in the script this sounded threatening and ominous, but once on screen, it’s such familiar dialogue that it just washes over us.

Once all that excitement is over, Adora harangues Bow for having gone to the Twigget village in the first place. Bow retorts that maybe the Rebellion would be better off without him, which sounds like a good idea to me, but Kowl quickly intervenes and suggests that Bow take a holiday “communing with nature in the Mystic Stones”. I suspect this is a code that Bow and Kowl have previously established for “We’re going to get off our tits on smack and visit Amsterdam’s seedier quarters.”

Bow's Farewell 2
Kowl: “Got the drugs in that bag, Bow?”

Not knowing the code, Adora agrees that this is a great idea, so Bow and Kowl head off together on their Big Lads’ Weekend. On arrival at the Mystic Stones, however, they discover that a bunch of Horde Troopers have enslaved the Twiggets and are forcing them to carry out some nefarious task. Kowl is despatched back to the camp to fetch Adora, while Bow takes leave of his senses and dresses up as a cliché magician to infiltrate the Horde camp. Rather surprisingly, this works.

Bow learns from one of the Twiggets – who has the unfortunate name of Spunky – that the Horde are building an eclipse beam, which will channel the power of the moon’s eclipse into destroying Castle Bright Moon. Bow then makes the strange choice to occupy himself in performing magic tricks for the assembled Horde Troopers, until Catra figures out who he is and prepares to cart him away.

Bow's Farewell 3
Bow: “No! Wait! This isn’t part of my act!”

Luckily, the enslaved Twiggets choose this moment to rebel, and with the arrival of She-Ra and Kowl on the scene, it’s curtains for the Horde Troopers. Catra gets the chance to fire her stupid eclipse beam, and even gets some super villainess dialogue (“Nothing can save Bright Moon now!”), but of course She-Ra destroys the machine with a good solid kick.

In an unexpected twist, however, it turns out that the machine is a fake, and the real controller is in an entirely different location. This does rather beg the question of why the Horde were forcing the Twiggets to build a fake machine; if they hadn’t drawn attention to themselves by enslaving the Twiggets, She-Ra would never have got wind of this plan until it was too late. Never mind! I suspect that logic is not one of Catra’s strengths.

Having said that, logic is clearly not a strength for anyone in this episode, since the next step is for She-Ra to fly on Swift Wind into outer space and use a grappling hook to pull the moon to stop it going into eclipse. While so doing, She-Ra says, “Come on, Swifty, we’ve got to pull like we’ve never pulled before,” which is incidentally what she says on a Saturday night down at Wetherspoons.

Bow's Farewell 4
Swift Wind: “She-Ra, is it just me or is this episode completely off its head?”

Bow observes that She-Ra is doing something completely mental, and not to be outdone, he decides that his best next step is to build a giant amplifier and play his harp through it. This has the outstandingly fortuitous effect of blowing up the real eclipse machine, wherever it is. Bow and Spunky perform a stupid jig, and She-Ra comes back to Etheria, incidentally without setting fire to her arse, unlike last time she tried a stunt like this.

 

In today’s adventure…

I was too busy watching the various other acts of total lunacy to be concerned with trying to find Loo-Kee today, so I missed his hiding place in the Twiggets’ village. He informs us solemnly that Bow used his knowledge of science to blow up the eclipse machine, and adds that we can find loads of books about science at our local library. He probably shouldn’t be encouraging us to read them, though, because we might then find out, for example, that:

  1. You can’t channel the power of an eclipse through an eclipse beam, because an eclipse is simply a shadow and thus doesn’t have any power.
  2. You can’t blow machines up by playing music at them really loudly.
  3. You can’t talk when you’re in outer space.
  4. You can’t breathe when you’re in outer space.
  5. You can’t maintain your body temperature when you’re only wearing a skimpy dress and a red cloak when you’re in outer space.
  6. You can’t use a grappling hook to tow a moon.
  7. Even if you could use a grappling hook to tow a moon, you’d cause all manner of havoc such as tidal waves on the surface of the planet below.
  8. More generally, you can’t become someone else entirely by shrieking about the power or honour of Grayskull. I know. I’ve tried.
Bow's Farewell 5
Loo-Kee: “I can definitely read books. Honest.”

 

Character checklist

What a lot of specialtons show up this week. Specifically, it’s Adora, Spirit, She-Ra, Swift Wind, Bow, Kowl, Glimmer, Queen Angela, Loo-Kee, the Twiggets (including Spunky), Catra, and the ever-present Horde Troopers.

 

Excuse given for Adora’s disappearance

It’s a standard display of two transformations and no excuses.

 

Insults

Catra is, as always, pretty free with insulting comments, though today they’re not very imaginative. She calls her Horde Troopers “fools” three times, as well as addressing them as “bunglers” and “cowards”. She also calls She-Ra and Bow “fools”, which – given the insane things they do this week – seems a reasonable assessment.

Bow's Farewell 6
Horde Trooper: “I’m really sorry.”

 

Oh No, Bow!

Bow’s little trip to the Twigget village at the start is presented as reckless behaviour and thus warrants a mention here, though I’d argue it doesn’t seem to be any worse than the rebels’ usual modus operandi. On the other hand, his later decision to dress up as a wizard is pretty strong evidence of his devolution into complete insanity.

 

Does it have the Power?

Let’s start by pointing out that the title is completely disconnected to the episode’s events. It leads one to conclude that Bow is going to quit, and admittedly the story looks that way for a brief second before Kowl brings up the notion of going on a lads’ weekend away. Thereafter, the episode would be more accurately called Bow’s Holiday or Bow’s Gone Nuts or something similar.

Bow's Farewell 7
Adora: “Bow, what the hell are you doing?”

Petty quibbling aside, this is a real episode of two halves. The first half is shaping up to be one of the dullest episodes we’ve seen in a long time, possibly ever, what with its pointless fight between She-Ra and Catra, and the subsequent haranguing of Bow for no particularly apparent reason. Once Bow finds the Horde slave camp, though, the whole thing picks up considerably by opting to ramp up the craziness to hitherto unexplored levels. In essence, the episode then becomes a far less sane version of The Crystal Castle, an episode which was itself pretty deranged.

In short, you should watch this episode, but probably only from the 10-minute mark or thereabouts. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and most of all, you’ll wonder if you’ve accidentally ingested some mind-altering drugs.

Episode 27 – The Eldritch Mist

In which we get a vague hint that Adora and Adam enjoy an overly close sibling relationship.

Adora puts in a visit to Mysticor, where she finds Castaspella using a magical device called the Pool of Vision to ogle Prince Adam. This is essentially the Etherian equivalent of hidden-cam spyware, and Castaspella certainly seems to be getting off on it. Eventually, Castaspella’s aching loins become too much for her to take, so she magically transports Adam to Etheria, where he immediately turns on the charm in a sleazy effort to get into Castaspella’s pants.

Eldritch 1
Castaspella: “Wowsers, look at that handsome hunk of man meat.”

Luckily, before things can get too vile for words, Kowl shows up to report that there’s a Horde ship just arrived at Whispering Wood. Castaspella teleports the four of them to the appropriate location, where they observe Shadow Weaver casting a spell from the Eldritch Book of Dark Magic. The spell creates an orange mist that covers the entire forest, preventing anyone from entering or exiting. Luckily, Adora, Adam, Castaspella and Kowl are on the outside, and it’s not very long before Adora and Adam make their awkward joint transformation into their heroic alter egos.

He-Man and She-Ra waste no time in ditching Castaspella and Kowl, instead choosing to go to ask Light Hope’s advice. Light Hope doesn’t really help, simply saying that the spell can be reversed if the Eldritch Book is read by someone who can use magic. This of course means Castaspella, and since He-Man suddenly realises he wants Castaspella to have his babies anyway, he puts on a truly goofy grin and insists they hurry back.

Eldritch 3
She-Ra: “He-Man, could you please at least try not to look so stupid?”

Castaspella teleports herself, He-Man and She-Ra into the Fright Zone to steal the book, but Hordak quickly becomes aware of their presence. Shadow Weaver pops up and teleports Castaspella away, leaving He-Man and She-Ra to find their way to the throne room. They have a brief fight with Hordak, but he’s so incompetent this week that he basically defeats himself.

Meanwhile, Castaspella and Shadow Weaver have appeared in Shadow Weaver’s private chambers, where the two of them have a magical duel and a good chat about old times. As previously hinted, Shadow Weaver originates from Mysticor, and it seems that she and Castaspella used to be friends before she was corrupted by Hordak. Once Castaspella defeats Shadow Weaver, by trapping her in the arms of a terrifying oversized teddy bear, she, He-Man and She-Ra are free to steal the Eldritch Book and head off to Whispering Wood.

Eldritch 4
Shadow Weaver: “Okay guys, fun’s fun, but can we send Bungle back to the Rainbow house now please?”

Castaspella uses the Book to remove the orange mist from the forest. I could harp on about the fact that she somehow gets inside the forest before doing this, but that would be a bit petty of me, I suppose. Instead, we get a scene featuring Prince Adam and Castaspella flirting ridiculously, until Adora interrupts to say, “All right, you two! He’s MY brother!” as if she thinks that this gives her 24-hour access to Adam’s bed. The only explanation that I can think of for this weird display of jealousy is that maybe the purity of the Eternian royal bloodline is maintained by incest. Luckily, before the cartoon can explore this further, Adam returns to Eternia.

 

In today’s adventure…

Jesus Christ, Loo-Kee, how the bloody hell was I supposed to see you there? He was literally behind a tree, with his nose poking out. Honestly, it’s ridiculous. He doesn’t have much of use to say either, simply advising us to seek help from experienced people when we need it. Yes, yes, yes. I think devotees of He-Man and She-Ra would by this stage have got this message into their thick skulls.

 

Character checklist

This episode is a lovely day out for Adora, Spirit, She-Ra, Swift Wind, Prince Adam, He-Man, Castaspella, Bow, Kowl, Glimmer, Madame Razz, Broom, Light Hope, the Twiggets, Loo-Kee, Hordak, Shadow Weaver, and the ever-present Horde Troopers. And Bungle.

Eldritch 2
Prince Adam: “Shall we use this shot for our album cover?”

 

Excuse given for Adora and Adam’s disappearances

I’m convinced that they don’t bother giving excuses because they’re well aware that everyone on Etheria knows the secret. I swear, they’re so obvious about it that it can only be because they don’t care.

 

Insults

No insults this time, though there’s a touch of good-natured ribbing from She-Ra to He-Man when she realises that He-Man is drooling over Castaspella.

Eldritch 5
He-Man: “She-Ra, does the term ‘third wheel’ mean anything to you?”

 

Does it have the Power?

While it’s always a treat to see He-Man livening up Etheria, I’m not generally that interested in his love life. Maybe there’s a hugely entertaining story to be told about a love triangle involving him, Castaspella and Prince Adam, but if so, this wasn’t it. It didn’t help that the voice actor seemed to have forgotten how to do He-Man’s voice, sounding pretty weedy throughout.

The storyline about the orange mist was very by-the-numbers, but the hints of Shadow Weaver’s back story were more interesting; it doesn’t particularly build on what we learned in A Loss for Words, but it’s nice to get a sense that there is some history behind these characters that we don’t yet fully know. The former friendship between Shadow Weaver and Castaspella could potentially make for an interesting episode in the future; even if not, it’s good that the characters aren’t complete blank slates.

My final verdict, I suppose, is that it’s no classic, and probably very slightly above average. I doubt anyone would rush to endorse it, nor condemn it.