In 1985 the power struggle we were used to in the Masters of the Universe toyline was about to change. This was of course because of the much hyped arrival of a third faction upon Eternia. No longer would it solely be He-Man and his heroic allies locked in an epic struggle with Skeletor and his minions. No, now the two forces would learn of The Power of the Evil Horde as Hordak arrived to conqueror all!
Around the time that Mattel decided to introduce both Hordak and his Evil Horde. My Father, a single parent, was finally earning a living wage. Which meant I was fortunate to finally be getting an allowance. As soon as I started seeing the TV ads for Hordak I began to save up. One evening just before our local Walmart closed for the night, I asked my Father to drive me up and let me buy Hordak. I literally paid for the evil tyrant and walked out the building as they were locking the doors for the evening.
I can certainly say that to my thirteen year old mind it was totally worth it. While I will indeed admit that when playing, He-Man and his allies would always prevail, they had to work harder than ever before to protect Eternia. Hordak quickly overthrew Skeletor in my toy universe, the skeletal conqueror was now merely a foot soldier. Bowing down to The Power of the Evil Horde!
Having said all of that however, I did not know this 1985 book and cassette tape had been made. It’s an interesting bit of media for a few different reasons. For one thing it is a little longer than the book and records we are used to. Furthermore it just so happens to have been illustrated by Bruce Timm. Yes, THAT Bruce Timm who seven years later would help produce the definitive version of Batman.
Most importantly of all, after reading and listening to the story. It uses not only the sound cues from the classic Filmation series but most of the same actors as well. John Erwin as Prince Adam and He-Man. With Lou Scheimer as Orko and naturally Alan Oppenheimer as both Skeletor as well as Man-At-Arms. Hordak is voiced by George Dicenzo and this tale focuses on his assault again Eternia. It also features the now well established lore that Skeletor was once a pupil to the evil tyrant.
Did I happen to mention that the awesome Fright Zone playset plays a large part in the story?
Okay, enough background information. It’s time for you to sit back and enjoy The Power of the Evil Horde!
Welcome back, friends. For this offering on Retro Records we are going with an absolutely epic LP. The 1983 Masters of the Universe record produced by Kid Stuff. Not only that but this was released in two different versions. The more common album cover you see at the top of the post in addition to a phono picture disc.
Image courtesy of the T3 Universe Blog.
A very big thanks to the T3 Universe Blog for the personal images of those stunning picture discs.
Now bear in mind by the end of 1982, the Masters of the Universe toy line had already been hugely popular. So it naturally made sense that the merchandising arm start to spread out. I ask you, what child of the early 80s wouldn’t want to hear the adventures on Eternia? And Kid Stuff certainly ran with the early storylines of the series. In particular I mean the fantasy aspects of Masters of the Universe.
Image courtesy of He-Man.Org
However this record was produced after the vintage DC Comics miniseries and classic Filmation series it seems.
As He-Man is no mere barbarian in the jungles of Eternia as presented in the minicomics that came with the toys. But the alter-ego of Prince Adam. On the other hand instead of visiting the Cave of Power to transform he holds aloft the Power Sword. Having said that though you won’t hear Cringer or Battle Cat speaking or such on this record. In fact it’s like Kid Stuff combined elements of all three versions for their story.
Did I forget to mention the first record includes a five minute Masters of the Universe theme song?
So pour yourself a bowl of your favorite cereal and join us as we listen to the adventures of the Masters of the Universe!
He-Man, the most powerful man in the universe is certainly no stranger to possessing relics and weapons of vast power and might. Since the Masters of the Universe toy line first hit the sheves back in 1981 – Mattel made sure that their valiant hero was outfitted with not only a strength-magnifying breastplate and harness but also one half of the Sword of Power – the Sword of Grayskull itself!
But perhaps He-Man has yet to obtain an item of such power in his many adventures presented so far whether in the Filmation animated series, games, or comic books over the past 35 years than the item he has claimed on this particular T-shirt. The Power Glove!
Image courtesy of Shirtoid.com
I came across this T-Shirt by way of Shirtoid – a site that does it’s best to find the greatest in retro inspired shirts like the merging of the Masters of the Universe and Nintendo’s awesome Power Glove. From there when you find a T-Shirt you can’t live without you follow a link to the actual shop that is selling the clothing – “I Have The Power Glove” by the way was designed by Jason Yang and is offered on Shirtwoot!, although I would add that you do not have to have that design printed just on a shirt.
I suggest while you are looking over the collection of He-Man shirts over at Shirtoid you might want to listen to some fitting 8-Bit music, like Studio Megaane’s cover of the He-Man and the Masters of the Universe theme!
If you enjoyed watching the He-Man animated TV show back in 1984, then I think you’ll enjoy this treat from artist Giovanni Ricco who has re-created the show intro in fantastic high-definition! The artwork has been re-drawn and re-coloured, with new visual effects and a shiny new logo, and it looks stunning.
The talented creator was also thoughtful enough to include a WIP video without the colours and effects too!