29 May 2007

On Trial...

Be sure to watch BBC Four on Wednesday 30th May! CHILDREN'S TV ON TRIAL: 1980s will feature He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. I helped out them out in the most trivial of ways. And going by the way the first episode dealt with 1960s children's TV, expect a brief, but slightly more serious look at our favorite animated show!

Timm Transformation!

There is no doubt that Bruce Timm's work on "The Search for Keldor" minicomic is possibly some of his best during his time on Masters of the Universe. These three panels show the unique transformation of Prince Adam into He-Man in front of Ninjor and Scare Glow. The illustration in the second panel is what I would like to bring to your attention. Not only do we see Bruce Timm's great use of shadows as the power of Grayskull reigns down, but the red cross highlighted amongst a largely silhouetted figure is a fantastic idea!


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Red and white Broom!

Poor old Broom really does go through the wars, often ending up on the receiving end of Madame Razz's experimental spells! Previously I showed how he was transformed into a mushroom by Madame Razz in the Ladybird book "Shadow Weaver's Magic Mirror". This time in another Ladybird book "She-Ra and the Golden Goose" Broom is transformed into a red and white version of himself by Madame Razz once again...


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25 May 2007

The Thunder Punch #1

I have always been a fan of these three panels from "The Treachery of Modulok!" minicomic, showing He-Man finally being bestowed with the power of the Thunder Punch. The final panel of these three is drawn to perfection, with the shadows cast creating a real sense of power, and foreshadowing what happens next...


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Remaining Evil...

Trap Jaw, Tri-Klops and Faker were always the last three Evil Warriors mentioned during the introductory section of the UK Masters of the Universe annuals. This first occurred when their action figure prototypes were featured in the 1984 UK Masters of the Universe annual; they were all mentioned in the 1985 Masters of the Universe annual, but Faker was not illustrated on this occasion; and finally in the 1986 Masters of the Universe annual, the last one to give an introduction to the series, this illustration was featured...


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22 May 2007

Shooting Whiplash!

As I have said before "The Clash of Arms" minicomic is quite possibly one of the most violent stories ever told within the Masters of the Universe series, and yet it is one of my favorites because of the action! When He-Man enters the fight we all expect him to save Fisto; but not by shooting Whiplash in the face with a laser gun! This is not the He-Man from the Filmation cartoon, but this part of the minicomics line were higher in violence than most...


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

21 May 2007

Zoar summons...

Here is a rarely seen illustration by Robin Davies for the Ladybird book company. However this piece of artwork was not used in a book, instead it was part of one large wall frieze or Action Frieze in this case featuring all new Masters of the Universe illustrations in 1985. I hope to feature more of the exciting artwork featured in this frieze sooner rather than later...


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Hordak's Monstrous Slave!

One of the most underrated Masters of the Universe minicomics is the Jim Mitchell penciled and Bruce Timm inked "Escape from the Slime Pit!" This one page showcases the heavily rendered style that both artist and inker developed for this particular comic. This style works perfectly for such a dark story in which He-Man becomes Hordak's mindless slave and goes on the rampage! The Slime Pit was given very few stories throughout the various Masters of the Universe canons, but this minicomic is without a doubt the best use of the Mattel toy!


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

19 May 2007

Horde toy and cartoon...

When Robin Davies introduced the Evil Horde artistically into the Ladybird books beginning with "He-Man and the Asteroid of Doom" he based the character designs of Grizzlor, Leech, Mantenna and Modulok on their respective toys. However he based Hordak's design and color scheme on the character's cartoon likeness...


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Action packed panel!

Here is one of my favorite action packed panels from the minicomic "Snake Attack!" It was at this point that Bruce Timm started to become a recognized name in the Masters of the Universe minicomics. Still heavily influenced by Jack Kirby we can see this panel features Kirby-styled line art.


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Procrustus!

One of my favorite characters that I wish had made an appearance in the cartoon was the Eternian God Procrustus who appeared in the DC minicomic "The Magic Stealer!" The character played an important, albeit brief, role in the comic where it is revealed that the giant held the inner world together with his four arms!


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Tom Sito's Orko!

FIVE posts today!

The storyboards for the season one He-Man episode "The Heart of A Giant" feature highly comical artwork by Tom Sito. The most amusing panels in the entire board show Orko looking to Prince Adam for help, the Trollan believing that he was knocked unconscious by a giant. Fortunately the director carried a lot of Tom Sito's great key poses through to the actual episode!


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Another Tucker Act One!

As I showcased before, Keith Tucker was a storyboard artist that would create nice banner-like illustrations at the beginning of his storyboards. Whilst not as detailed as the opening illustration to "The Unicorn King" this illustration for the "Return of the Sea Hawk" storyboards is equally as entertaining.


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

14 May 2007

Original Adam...

Here is an illustration from the He-Man and the Masters of the Universe Series Guide that was given to stations wishing to pick up the show for broadcast. As I have said before this booklet contains lots of character histories, early conceptual drawings, and episodes that were never made. When this booklet was being produced the He-Man series was undergoing heavy development, and the artist for this piece subsequently based his illustration of Prince Adam on the design that appeared in the DC Comics story "From Eternia With Death!"


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Following Filmation.

As you can see in this illustration from the Ladybird book "He-Man and the Lost Dragon" artist Robin Davies had altered his style dramatically to match the character designs as seen in the Filmation cartoon. This trend of following the Filmation character designs would carry over heavily into the Princess of Power Ladybird books...


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12 May 2007

Look like horns...

It is safe to say that Paul Dini's original vision that was "Quest for He-man" failed to make it to screen. His idea for an episode featuring a giant rabbit was more like a twisted fairytale, and yet this episode is often lauded for its ridicoulessness. However I still champion this episode and am proud to be partly responsible for getting it featured on BCI's The Best of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe DVD! Interestingly, in the script Paul Dini indicates that in silhouette, particularly in the below image Plundor's ears should appear to be "long, devil-like horns". As we can see, this was not carried out in production...


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11 May 2007

Future Visions #3

Major computer problems over the last few days have prevented me from updating the Blog...

Here are pages nine to eleven of the rarely seen She-Ra story "Future Visions" as featured in the UK Princess of Power special. What makes this story so special is that everyone's favorite Eternian witch Evil-Lyn appears within the context of a She-Ra story! This story is notable not only for Evil-Lyn's intial dominance over the rebels, but also for the fact that her skin color confusingly swaps on a regular basis! Pages nine to eleven will follow soon...


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05 May 2007

NO BUNS!

These two panels by Don Manuel from the season one She-Ra episode "Into Etheria" are highly amusing! As not to overly sexualize the character in any way, there is a note heavily underlined between these two particular illustrations indicating "NO BUNS", informing the layout artists and animators not to draw Glimmer's ass cheeks!


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04 May 2007

Future Visions #2

Here are pages five to eight of the rarely seen She-Ra story "Future Visions" as featured in the UK Princess of Power special. What makes this story so special is that everyone's favorite Eternian witch Evil-Lyn appears within the context of a She-Ra story! This story is notable not only for Evil-Lyn's intial dominance over the rebels, but also for the fact that her skin color confusingly swaps on a regular basis! Pages nine to eleven will follow soon...


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

03 May 2007

Green Granamyr.

The "Dragon's Gift" minicomic was interesting because of its connection to the Filmation episode "The Dragon's Gift". Aside from the truncated story the biggest difference was the color of Granamyr. Not only is his green color scheme a bit of a shock, but even though the Filmation design looked creepy, the great Alfredo Alcala made the character look even creepier!


(click on the image to see it at full-size)

01 May 2007

Future Visions #1

Here are pages one to four of the rarely seen She-Ra story "Future Visions" as featured in the UK Princess of Power special. What makes this story so special is that everyone's favorite Eternian witch Evil-Lyn appears within the context of a She-Ra story! This story is notable not only for Evil-Lyn's intial dominance over the rebels, but also for the fact that her skin color confusingly swaps on a regular basis! Pages five to eight will follow soon...


(click on the image to see it at full-size)
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