She-Ra first appears alongside He-Man in the theatrical film The Secret of the Sword, which eventually became the first five episodes of the She-Ra series. She-Ra is He-Man's twin sister who was kidnapped at birth by Hordak and taken to Etheria, where she served as a Horde Force Captain before being rescued by He-Man and joining the Great Rebellion. With her Sword of Protection Adora can become She-Ra; just as Prince Adam can become He-Man. After reuniting with her parents she decides to return to Etheria
Masters of the Universe (commonly abbreviated to MOTU; and sometimes informally referred to as He-Man, after the lead hero) is a media franchise created by Mattel.
Although featuring a vast line-up of characters, the main premise revolves around the heroic characters of He-Man and evil Skeletor on planet Eternia. Since its initial launch late 1981, the franchise has spawned a variety of products, including six lines of action figures, four animated television series, countless comic series and a film. Designer Roger Sweet claims to be the chief creator of He-Man and MOTU, although this is not officially acknowledged by Mattel. The earliest storybooks and much of the original backstory were written by Donald F. Glut.
The animated series He-Man and the Masters of the Universe was produced by Filmation and made its television debut in 1983.
Eternia is ruled by King Randor and Queen Marlena. (The latter was born Marlena Glen, a Terran astronaut who married Randor after she was marooned on Eternia by the crash of her spaceship). Their son is Prince Adam: lazy, clumsy, careless, irresponsible and almost as cowardly as his pet tiger Cringer. (Adam's twin sister, Princess Adora, was kidnapped at birth by the evil warlord Hordak - who raised her as his own daughter to become a captain in his army). However, Prince Adam possesses a magic sword, and when he holds it aloft and says the magic words, "By the power of Grayskull! I have the power!" Prince Adam is transformed into He-Man, "The Most Powerful Man In The Universe".
Many episodes, particularly the early ones, are about Skeletor's repeated attempts and failures to enter Castle Grayskull. He-Man invariably defeats these attempts, unless Skeletor defeats himself first via his own stupidity, arrogance and treachery - which is often the case. Though the animated cartoons were similar, in respects, to the version of the story presented by DC Comics, Filmation focused more on the lighter, humorous elements of the story rather than the violent ones, in order to render it more suitable for a children's audience. A new character was also introduced in the form of Orko, a small alien magician who shares Prince Adam's secret and provides the comic relief for most episodes.
Despite the limited animation techniques that were used to produce the series, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe was notable for breaking the boundaries of censorship that had severely restricted the narrative scope of children's TV programming in the 1970s. For the first time in years, a cartoon series could feature a muscular superhero who was actually allowed to hit people (although most of the time wrestling-style moves were utlized instead of direct violence), though he still couldn't use his sword often. The cartoon was controversial in that it was produced in connection with marketing a line of toys; advertising to children was itself controversial during this period. In Britain, advertising regulations forbade commercials for He-Man toys to accompany the program itself (either before or after the episode, as there were no in-show commercials). In similar fashion to other shows at the time (notably G.I. Joe), an attempt to mitigate the negative publicity generated by this controversy was made by including a "life lesson" or "moral of the story" at the end of each episode. This moral was usually directly tied to the action or central theme of the episode. In the United Kingdom, where the episodes were usually edited for timing reasons, these closing "morals" were nearly always edited out of their original broadcasts.
The cartoon series was also remarkable because it was one of the first animated series produced directly for syndication, as opposed to most other syndicated cartoons of the time which were re-runs of old Saturday morning cartoons. The most notable production fact of the series was that it was the very first animated series where a bulk quantity of 65 episodes were produced so that the series could be stripped across 13 weeks
1989, two years after the financially disastrous ending of the original Masters of the Universe product line, a second He-Man animated series titled The New Adventures of He-Man, was produced by DiC to promote Mattel's short-lived attempt to revive the MOTU brand with a new toyline, simply titled He-Man. The new series is radically different to the original fantasy-oriented milieu, shifting to an almost purely science fiction setting which sees He-Man transported to the futuristic planet of Primus ruled by Master Sebrian. As He-Man leads the Galactic Guardians, Skeletor bases himself on the evil world of Denebria, where he forms an alliance with Flogg and the Mutants, who are hellbent on conquering Primus for themselves. The series contains clear continuity links to the original Masters of the Universe, and was intended as a continuation of the existing mythology, although some fans see it as a separate canon from the original series due to the differences in style and character portrayal.
Other than He-Man and Skeletor, The Sorceress of Castle Grayskull is the only character from the original series to make regular appearances, acting as a guide to He-Man. Several other characters are featured in the pilot episode, including King Randor and Queen Marlena, who learn of the dual identity of Prince Adam and He-Man.
The majority of the cartoon episodes were written by Jack Olesker, resulting in a tight continuity, which was almost entirely lacking in the earlier Filmation series. Neither the New Adventures animated series or toyline were nearly as popular as the originals, lasting only sixty-five episodes and a few poorly received waves of action figures.
Filmation Associates was an American production company that produced animation and live action programming for television during the latter half of the 20th century. Located in Reseda, California, the animation studio was founded in 1963. During a period lasting from the 1960s through the 1980s, the only real competitors to Hanna-Barbera Productions in the field of TV cartoons were Filmation, DePatie-Freleng Enterprises, Ruby-Spears Productions, DiC and Nelvana. Filmation's founders and principal producers were Lou Scheimer and Norm Prescott.
A trademark of the company's productions beginning in 1969 was a rotating "Produced by" (and on some shows, "Executive Producers") credit seen in the end credits (and in later productions, the opening sequences) of Filmation programs, a device that was supposedly created to allow them to share equal billing (previously, Scheimer's name was placed above Prescott's), although later Filmation productions credited only Scheimer, in the form of his signature ("Lou Scheimer, Executive Producer"), starting with 1982's Gilligan's Planet.
Many of its shows—particularly the productions of the late 1970s and 1980s—are notable for imparting a simple moral or life-lesson (explained by a key character, in a child-friendly manner) in the epilogue