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She-Ra Unchained

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She-Ra Unchained is a first season episode of the animated television series She-Ra Princess of Power, produced in 1985. Written by Bob Forward, directed by Bill Reed.


Within the Fright Zone, Hordak introduces his latest invention, the Magna Beam Transporter, which can transport objects from one place to another. He plans to use the Magnabeam on the Whispering Woods, transporting the entire forest to the Valley of the Lost, from which no one has ever returned. Hordak takes Mantenna, Adora, and Shadow Weaver to the Plunder Room, where rebels are drained of their willpower and that life force is used to power the Magna Beam. Adora, still under Shadow Weaver's magic, looks slightly concerned when she sees a defiant rebel about to placed in the booth. Hordak is more concerned that the rebels in the Horde dungeons provide little energy for the machine and commands that more rebels be captured.

Meanwhile, in the Whispering Woods, Glimmer and Bow try to discourage Adam from journeying into the Fright Zone. After winning the argument, Adam sets off and immediately locates a group of marching Horde Troopers. Transforming into He-Man, he captures one of the Troopers and dons their armor, in order to sneak unnoticed into the Fright Zone.

Shadow Weaver reminds Hordak that the returning Troopers may have captured some rebels. Her magic allows them to see the Troopers, and they notice that one Trooper is different from the others, concluding that it is He-Man in disguise. Once inside the Fright Zone, He-Man confronts Adora, hoping that she has learnt the truth about the Horde. Shadow Weaver's spell over Adora proves more powerful than the truth, and she arrests He-Man as Hordak arrives. He-Man is overpowered and Hordak suggests using him to charge the Magna Beam; Adora is horrified, until Shadow Weaver induces her spell of control once again.

Shadow Weaver, now in possession of both He-Man's Sword of Power and the sword that Adora was holding, attempts to understand the nature of the swords' power, but can make no sense of them. Adora is awakened in the night by a strange voice; she goes to the Plunder Room to find He-Man's energy being drained. The sword grabs her attention; the Sorceress appears in the jewel, telling Adora to throw off the spell. She reveals that the Horde stole Adora from her parents as a baby, and that she had a twin brother. Adora is stunned when the Sorceress tells her that He-Man is indeed her twin brother. "For the honor of Grayskull," says the Sorceress, before He-Man is completely drained of his energy and collapses.

Adora raises the sword, repeating the final words spoken to her by the Sorceress, and transforms into She-Ra. The Princess of Power frees He-Man from his imprisonment and returns his sword to him. The power of Grayskull revives He-Man, even as Hordak enters the room with more Horde Troopers. While He-Man fends off the Troopers, She-Ra leaps out of the window and crashes into the stable, landing on her horse, Spirit, who transforms into Swift Wind the unicorn. They fly out to warn the Great Rebellion, while He-Man jumps up into the top level of the Fright Zone to stop Hordak.

The Horde leader unleashes a blast from the Magna Beam, which a returning She-Ra stops with a boulder; He-Man destroys the Magna Beam Transporter before Hordak can get a second shot. She-Ra and Swift Wind rescue He-Man, who is astounded when She-Ra reveals that she is his sister.

Great Rebellion

Heroic Warriors

Evil Horde





  • The full, original title as seen on the shooting script was "The Sword of She-Ra Part III: She-Ra Unchained". The unused part of the title is still spoken by the announcer (Alan Oppenheimer), although he refers to 'chapters' instead of 'parts'.
  • "She-Ra Unchained" starts with an alternate opening sequence narrated by Lou Scheimer which introduces She-Ra and the Great Rebellion, but does not disclose her secret identity.
  • The TV episode starts with Hordak introducing the Magna-Beam Transporter and its charger before Adam leaves for the Fright Zone. In the movie version it is the other way around.

Scenes from "She-Ra Unchained" which were cut out of The Secret of the Sword:

    • After Hordak drains the will of the slave in the Magna-Beam charger, Adora asks "What happens to the prisoners afterward?" and Hordak shows her that the Rebel has now become a slave with no will of his own.
    • Bow intends to join Adam on his quest to the Fright Zone, but Adam tells him he's needed at the Rebel camp and one man is less noticeable than two.
    • After entering Doom Tower disguised as a Horde Trooper, He-Man takes a moment and wonders how he will find Adora in such a large place.
    • When Adora is awakened and looks out her window, a shot of He-Man in the Magna-Beam charger is superimposed, making her she gasp in horror.
    • After He-Man regains his strength, Hordak tells his men to stand back before he blasts through the door. In the Theatrical cut, he blasts the door immediately after the transformation sequence.
  • The music score was restructured for The Secret of the Sword to compensate for the numerous edits to the original five episodes and is completely different in many scenes.
  • Hordak's right arm keeps changing between his usual blue one and a mechanical one with a claw during all the scenes involved with the Magna Beam and it's charger.
  • Nearly all of the footage seen during the recap at the start of the episode is different animation from which was seen in Beast Island. He-Man’s struggle with his chains is new animation[1] [2]; the footage of the Horde Trooper confronting the young boy Jason is shot from a different angle[3]; Adora is seen reacting to the cruelty of the Horde wearing her regular red outfit whereas in the previous episode, she was wearing a cloak to disguise herself; the footage of Adora confronting Hordak in his throne room is also shown from different angles and Shadow Weaver’s spell is now a green mist.[4] [5]
  • During Adora’s transformation into She-Ra with Castle Grayskull in the background, its jaw-bridge is missing. The entire transformation sequence was re-animated and the corrected version used in each episode following the five part origin story, but the incorrect version is still shown during the opening credits of all those episodes.
  • According to the original shooting script by Bob Forward, She-Ra's magic phrase was originally to be "By the grace of Grayskull" instead of "For the honor of Grayskull".
  • Sequences that were cut from the original shooting script:
    • In the script, The Sword of Protection was to be on display in the Plunder Room when we first see it at the start of the episode, but it remains empty until after He-Man's capture, when it as well as the Power Sword are on display.
    • Before Bow says to Adam "You shall not go alone", he exclaims "By the planets, man!" and when Adam leaves on his own, the other rebels wish him good luck and say farewell in the script, whereas in the finished episode they remain silent.
    • After He-Man captures a Horde Trooper and puts on its armor, there was supposed to be a shot of the Trooper (not a robot at the time the script was written), bound and gagged and wearing silly-looking underwear witth socks and garters. He-Man says a few words to the Trooper, hoping that he's not too uncomfortable and that another patrol will be along shortly to release him.

External Links


  1. Bustatoon's He-Man and She-Ra Blog
  2. Bustatoon's He-Man and She-Ra Blog
  3. Bustatoon's He-Man and She-Ra Blog
  4. Bustatoon's He-Man and She-Ra Blog
  5. Bustatoon's He-Man and She-Ra Blog
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Beast Island Dvd Order Reunions

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