Western Animation / The New Adventures of He-Man


The New Adventures of He-Man was a 1990 65-Episode Cartoon used to promote a revival to the Masters of the Universe toyline. Unlike its predecessor, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983), the series is almost purely Science Fiction, though it still contains Continuity Nods to the franchise. However, the effort didn't last long, and the show only lasted one year, much shorter than the original cartoon. It took twelve years for there to be another cartoon version of the franchise.

In the distant future, the world Primus is a peaceful society unused to the ways of war. When a society of Mutants led by Flogg lays siege to Primus, their leaders decide to use a time machine to call for help from heroes from the past. Prince Adam reluctantly agrees to help them, and after telling his parents his secret, he goes with the time travelers as He-Man. Unfortunately, He-Man's arch enemy Skeletor follows them, quickly joining forces with Flogg.


  • 65-Episode Cartoon
  • Adaptation Explanation Extrication: The New Adventures of He-Man was launched with four pack-in minicomics explaining the setup changes, including the change in appearance of He-Man and Skeletor, and the change of He-Man's "By the Power of Grayskull!" to "By the Power of Eternia". In the TV series, they appear from the beginning in their hi-tech costumes, and He-Man with his new transformation phrase, with no explanation for the changes. Some things in the comics were ignored by the cartoon, however, such as Skeletor finding out Prince Adam was He-Man moments before the He-Man identity became permanent, as well as the redesign of the sword to match the recently released toy, as the new Sword of Power in the cartoon looked nothing like the new merchandise. He-Man's secret identity also remained secret in the cartoon, and no explanation is given in the show for Skeletor becoming an apparently cybernetic being, though this was addressed in the comics. Perhaps the writers were expecting people to assume a tie to the 1987 feature film to explain Skeletor's cybernetic augmentation if they hadn't gotten ahold of the minicomics. If so, it didn't work.
  • The Bad Guy Wins:
    • In "Sword & Staff" it seems He-Man gets rid of the crystal by destroying it, but at the end it turns out that Skeletor still has the crystal's powers.
    • In "The Gift" the Mutants actually manage to conquer Primus by infiltrating little creatures named Zeps that become huge monsters. This status quo remains for other four episodes until "The Battle for Levitan".
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Nearly all of He-Man's Galactic Guardians are normal humans using technological equipment in lieu of actual powers. Meanwhile, Flogg and Skeletor's Mutants are all, well, mutants, each possessing a variety of deformities and superhuman abilities (only aversion among the Mutants is Toyless Toyline Character Crita).
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: In "The Bride of Slushhead", after Alcon uses a Get a Hold of Yourself, Man! slap on Gepple:
    Gepple: Why did you do that?
    Gepple: Well, this isn't a movie. This is a cartoon!
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: He-Man has one, although this time it's "By the Power of Eternia".
  • Dumb Muscle: Butthead and Staghorn.
  • Evil Counterpart: Butthead is quite similar to Ram-Man from the original series.
  • Evil Laugh: In one episode, Skeletor mocks Flogg's halfhearted chuckle and insists he leave these things to the professionals.
  • General Failure: Flogg isn't a particularly intelligent mutant and his strategies often leave something to be desired, but he manages to subvert this occasionally — he's not smart, but he's a savvy and intimidating military commander who can draw up a battle plan that'll leave 'em reeling sometimes.
  • Giant Eye of Doom: Optikk, one of the evil mutants, is essentially a giant eye sitting on a suit of armor. Optikk is an alias; his real name is pronounced through a series of blinks.
  • Important Haircut: In an inverted example, He-Man's hair inexplicably (but quite explicitly) gets ponytail-length longer during a moment of awesome mystical display.
  • Merchandise-Driven
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: "You're in the Army Now" features a One-Shot Character based on Woody Allen, believe it or not. His introductory scene is even a parody of Allen's appearance in Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex (But Were Afraid to Ask).
  • Old Hero, New Pals: He-Man and Skeletor travel to planet Primus, where they join the Galactic Guardians and the Evil Mutants respectively. The Sorceress appears from time to time and there's one episode with Teela.
  • The Rashomon: The Battle of the Quagmi Swamp. Flipshot, Hydron, Slushhead and Flogg each tell their own version of the story - their versions, of course, exaggerating their own role and aggrandizing themselves. Interestingly, we never get the real story and are forced to simply piece it together from the common elements in each tale.
  • Recycled IN SPACE!: To be perfectly fair, little more than He-Man and Skeletor themselves remained from the original series, and in both cases their appearances were altered quite a bit.
  • Space Opera
  • Unfortunate Names: One of the Skeletor-allied mutants was a helmeted, headbutt-happy mauler called... "Butthead". (No relation.) The cartoon mercifully refers to him solely as "BH".
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: He-Man, as in the original series.