The second part of Masters of the Universe: Revelation has finally found its way to Netflix. Kevin Smith‘s series acts as a continuation of the many story threads left behind in the original 1981 series, while also expanding upon the lore of the world of Eternia and the mysteries of the mystical power’s origin. The first part started on a surprising tragedy that pushed our characters to explore their place in a world without He-Man. Even in the second part, we get some strong character moments surrounding key characters of the original. In a colorful world like Eternia, drama is a surprising addition that adds a unique challenge to its goofier origins.
The characters in this world have some rather curious naming conventions. Some of them even follow the same rule as Digimon‘s titular monster all ending their name the same way. Throughout the journey, we’ll meet He-Man, Beast Man, Moss-Man, Mer-Man, and many other “Man” named characters. One of our main antagonists, or technically protagonist, is unironically named Evil-Lyn, which she pokes fun at not being her choice.
It’s great that the show embraces these names that defined these characters in our childhood. It just accepts that this is their name and it makes sense within this universe rather than mocking every single character. Beast-Man especially gets a great character moment highlighted by his name in the final episodes. But I confess to sometimes chuckling when someone screams out the name Clamp-Champ in a dramatic fashion.
Still, it’s not the namings of these characters that make the drama not always land as strongly as it could. Skeletor has unleashed his power across the world early in the first episode of Part 2 and is, at long last, an actual threat to our heroes. Yet, as this is happening, we have characters like Fisto and Clamp-Champ making jokes during some high-stakes moments. So, when a character screams: “It’s time for this mist to meet my fist!” it takes away a bit from the actual tragedy that is unfolding for a bit.
The music sometimes also takes a more “heroic” direction with some jokes thrown in right before landing on a rather tragic moment. We have burned corpses on the ground mere minutes after a joke was made. Even as the sequence starts focusing more on the drama of how helpless our heroes are and building tension, Skeletor throws out another pun to de-escalate it. It’s not technically an issue and Even with more drama added in, the expansion of the once more kid-friendly cartoon still tries to keep some of the goofier elements alive, but that seems to be at a constant struggle with the more serious additions.
It doesn’t downplay the storytelling at play here and some of the deeper character moments hit quite hard. Sometimes it just feels like the show could’ve done with one or two jokes less, or at least aged up some of the humor alongside the drama. At the end of the day, it’s subjective if the humor and drama hit the right balance for you. It just didn’t quite hit the mark all the time, but I will say the second season ends on a high note that makes up for some of the goofier moments earlier on in the second part. Here’ shopping that momentum is carried over into the third.