He-man turns 30 in 2013

He-man catches up with the rest of today's 30-somethings who adored him as kids

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, HE-MAN! Prince Adam of Eternia as He-man with his twin sister Princess Aurora as She-ra. Fan art from the He-man Facebook page

[Warning: This story may bring a powerful bout of nostalgia for ’80s cartoons.]

MANILA, Philippines – He-man, the “most powerful man in the universe,” turns 30 years old next year.

Don’t know who he is? Watch this video:

The animation series He-man and the Masters of the Universe began in 1983. For us who grew up watching the cartoon every week, how can we ever forget the line: “By the power of Grayskull!”?

Hero He-man is a royal by blood as Prince Adam of Eternia. His superpowers were granted to him by the sorceress of Castle Grayskull. He is tasked to protect the castle’s secrets and to defend Eternia from the villain Skeletor and his minions.

PIN-THE-TAIL. He-man plays the game on Battle Cat. Fan art from the He-man Facebook page

To become He-man, Prince Adam raises his sword and says, “By the power of Grayskull!” He then transforms from boy-next-door-with-China-chop-hairdo into a Conan-can’t-touch-this warrior with muscles in plain sight.

As He-man, he proclaims himself the “most powerful man in the universe” and points his sword to his cowardly tiger Cringer who transforms into the feline superhero, the mighty Battle Cat.

He-man’s legacy

GRAYSKULL POSSE. He-man with Teela, Man-at-Arms, Battle Cat and Orko. Fan art from the He-man Facebook page

The transformation, epic battles and the interesting — and often funny — characters made He-man one of the biggest cartoons of the ’80s. 

It aired from 1983 to 1985. But the kid fans were still hooked, so re-runs were still aired until the late 90s.

In 1987, the film Masters of the Universe was released, with Dolph Lundgren in the title role as He-man.

Fast-forward to the year 2002. A new He-man cartoon, He-man and the Masters of the Universe, was launched.

The cartoon aired in Cartoon Network until 2004. 

CIRCA 2002. The modern-day rendition of Prince Adam as He-man and Skeletor. Image from the He-man Facebook page

But don’t despair: There are news that a new He-man movie will be filmed soon, with no less than GI Joe: Retaliation director John Chu at the helm. (GI Joe: Retaliation is scheduled for release in March 29, 2013.)

“I LOVED the toys growing up,” says Chu in a story published by www.geeksofdoom.com. “I had Grayskull, I had BattleCat/Cringer, I had Stratos and Orko and obviously He-Man and Skeletor. I also watched the cartoon a lot growing up.

“This is my era, so going to Mattel to visit their headquarters was like walking into a childhood fantasy. They had a life-sized He-Man in the lobby as well as a glass case with EVERY SINGLE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE action figure on display.

“It brought me back to my youth and I knew I had to be a part of getting this movie together. For every MOTU (Masters of the Universe) fan out there, it felt like it was time and I wanted to make sure to protect it in the process.”

CAN'T STOP HIM. From cartoons, to movies, to games, He-man will live to 100. Image from the He-man Facebook page

For today’s social media and gaming generation, there is also a He-man online game that allows children to experience being He-man and defeating Skeletor and his evil gang.

The technology available to children these days makes the make-believe world of the ’80s so far away and distant. While today’s 30-somethings would recall playing a He-man (and She-ra, his twin sister and a heroine) game with plastic or wooden swords, kids now can do the same thing with the push of a button.

For these kids in their virtual worlds, they are the masters of the universe.

But for us 30-somethings, nothing can replace He-man. He will always be “the most powerful man in the universe.” – Rappler.com