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Masters of the Universe (DC Comics)

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The first full-sized Masters of the Universe comic book series was published by DC Comics. It is a three-issue miniseries written by Paul Kupperberg and illustrated by George Tuska and Alfredo Alcala.

Issue #1 - "To Tempt the Gods"

He-Man discovers that Skeletor has captured the Goddess to hold ransom in exchange for magical amulets that could locate the two halves of the Sword of Power.

He-Man seeks the first amulet at the Royal Palace, as it's owned by Tarrak, the royal wizard. He is allowede entrance to the palace thanks to Teela, and after a brief encounter with King Randor and Queen Marlena, reach Tarrak's chambers where they find the wizard being attacked by demons. He-Man, Teela and Battle Cat help Tarrak, but they are outnumbered until the timely arrival of Man-At-Arms. However, the demons flñee with the talisman.

Meanwhile, Stratos returns from a hunting trip to Avion and his wife. Suddenly, Avion is attacked by Beastmen seeking Stratos, who then flees Avion to draw the Beastmen away from his people. As expected, the Beastmen follow Stratos. When He-Man sees Stratos coming, Tarrak uses a spell to make Stratos invisible to the Beastmen, who then leave. When Stratos reaches his friends, He-Man notices he carries one of the amulets.

  • The costume Teela wears in this issue was the inspiration for the "Battleground Teela" figure.
  • The idea of Adam and He-Man looking identical save for their clothes is addressed when He-Man worries that his parents could recognize him.

Issue #2 - "The Key to Castle Grayskull"

He-Man and Battle Cat seek for one of the amulets in the jungle, where they find a man named Ceril and his tribe. He-Man explains to Battle Cat that he met Ceril when he, as Prince Adam, found Ceril and his people enslaved by the sorcerer Damon. When Adam tried to help the people, Zoar, the Goddess' messenger, approached him and he became He-Man to defeat Damon. Ceril guides He-Man to where he saw an amulet, but they must face more demons before reaching it inside a cave.

Man-At-Arms, Teela, and Stratos go to the Sea of Blackness to find one of the amulets. They dive underwater, breathing thanks to a potion provided by Tarrak, and reach the city of the Mer-People, the resting place of the amulet. As expected, they find Mer-Man, who wants to keep the amulet for himself. The Heroic Warriors face Mer-Man's soldiers until Skeletor intervenes. Teela refuses to be helped by one such as Skeletor, so he leaves and takes Mer-Man to punish him. While everybody is stunned by Skeletor's appearance, Stratos approaches the altar where the amulet is. Tarrak's breathing potion is about to fade when Stratos reaches the amulet.

After getting the amulets, He-Man and his friends are teleported to another plane where Skeletor orders them to find the Power Sword. They are ambushed by more demons until the arrival of... Zodac!

  • Ceril and his people were created as a way to recoincile the "He-Man from a jungle tribe" with the "Adam becoming He-Man" versions.
  • Mer-Man says "By Serpos!" years before the creation of the character who would use that name.

Issue #3 - "Within these Walls... Armageddon!"

After the demons escape, Zodac explains that, if Skeletor sent He-Man to get the amulets, he cannot be who sent the demons to stop him. Despite the stakes being so high to force Zodac to intervene, his neutrality stops him from revealing this enemy's identity to He-Man. The other enemy is Damon, who is spying both He-Man and Skeletor, and despite having the halves of the sword right in front of him, cannot reach them due to a stasis field. Zodac uses the amulets to call Zoar and teleport the champions of Eternia, but he cannot accompany them because his intervention is limited.

Damon attacks Skeletor in the Cave of Power, knowing that their clashing magic energies would make them travel through unreachable corridors to Castle Grayskull itself. Skeletor reveals he knew all along and feigned ignorance while expecting Damon to make his move. Then Skeletor kills Damon.

He-Man and friends find themselves at Castle Grayskull, and then understand that the sword has been hidden there in a sort of paradox: you need the sword to gain control and rightful entry of the castle, but you must enter the castle to get the sword. Since there are several doors, each warrior enters one. Stratos finds a web that traps him. Man-At-Arms finds himself in a booby-trapped armory. Teela is trapped in a maze until she blasts her way and finds Skeletor just as he is about to reunite the halves of the Sword of Power. He-Man also breaks the wall of the room where he and Battle Cat were, and Skeletor uses the Power Sword to teleport Beast Man and Man-E-Faces, making the latter one assume his monster form. He-Man defeats both and then is saved from a trap by Teela. Finally, Zoar intervenes; He-Man catches Skeletor while Zoar takes the sword away from him. The Goddess is free and promises to imprison Skeletor the same way he imprisoned her, and to send the halves of the sword to a new hiding place. But before doing that, she tells He-Man and Teela to free their trapped friends.

  • There's some scenes where He-Man is mistakenly shown with a sword. The sword that came with the figure is a half of the Power Sword and wasn't "his" sword until later.
  • Man-E-Faces is still the early version, where his monster form is controlled by Skeletor.
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