1983 MOTU/POP Mattel Mini-Comic Cannon:
In He-Man’s time, Skeletor inadvertently set King Hiss free when he discovered the pool of power beneath Snake Mountain. King Hiss then tried to free his army from the Void but only managed to summon Rattlor and Tung Lashor, who were working for the Horde at the time. Later, when King Hiss entered Viper Tower, he was able to summon more Snake Men to join his ranks. King Hiss formed an uneasy alliance with Skeletor, each intending to betray the other once they’d vanquished their mutual enemies.
Though usually appearing as a heroic-looking man, King Hiss's human guise could melt away to reveal a mass of writhing snakes in humanoid form. In addition to his magic, he had a hypnotic gaze to mesmerize his foes.
King Hiss displayed hostile feelings toward Hordak which dated back to ancient times. Upon learning that Rattlor and Tung Lashor had joined the Horde, Hiss remarked, "The Evil Horde still exists? And you dared to serve Hordak?"
1984 MOTU/POP German Audio Plays Canon:
In a special take on King Hiss, the German audio plays established that he, alongside his Snake Men, had spread fear to many planets throughout the universe. Accepting an invitation from Skeletor and Hordak, he arrived on Eternia. His human disguise was extremely effective, allowing him to trick Snout Spout and Extendar into thinking Skeletor was Eternia’s hero. He was absolutely loyal to Skeletor and eager to follow his orders.
1986 MOTU Marvel/Star Comics Canon:
King Hiss and his fellow Snake Men had been imprisoned in a tomb beneath Snake Mountain. When Skeletor freed him, he reluctantly allied himself with the Evil Warriors until, after a defeat in battle, he fled, terminating his allegiance with Skeletor.
1986 MOTU Newspaper Strips Canon
In contrast to the mini-comics, King Hiss was freed from his tomb deep within Snake Mountain when Skeletor broke the guardian falcon seal. Combining his magic with Skeletor's, King Hiss unleashed the world destroyer Sarcedon, the enormous serpent coiled around Snake Mountain.After Sarcedon was defeated, King Hiss was placed back into suspended animation by He-Man and the Sorceress using the power of the guardian falcon.
1986 UK MOTU/POP Comic Magazines Canon:
In the UK comics, Skeletor attempted to seize the power of the Snake Men. He inadvertently returned King Hiss to Eternia from his imprisonment in the Timeless Dimension. Hiss proceeded to reestablish the Clan of the Viper and, with the Eyes of the Serpent, raised Viper Tower, his old command center.In his human disguise, King Hiss would often fool people into thinking he was a Heroic Warrior, and on one occasion he tricked some ordinary Eternians into passing false information about the Snake Men to the heroes, leading them into a trap.
1987 MOTU German Ehapa Comics Canon:
In the Ehapa comics, King Hiss’s human guise was a sort of a skin shell which he would shed to reveal his true snake form. He could use sorcery to transform roots into snakes. He would bolster his forces by occasionally teaming up with Skeletor’s forces or the Horde.
2002 MOTU Mike Young Productions Animated Series Canon:
Though it largely followed in the footsteps of earlier portrayals of King Hiss, the MYP series made significant changes to the character and added new details. Now dubbed "King Hssss" and sporting an Egyptian pharaoh motif, the King of the Snake Men commanded a massive and loyal army. Though he used his staff for his sorcery, he did not always require it, especially while in his snake form. Among his powers were the abilities to project magical blasts and conjure visions of the past. Like other Snake Men, he could survive a fall into lava by shedding his skin. King Hssss could also eat his victims whole by swallowing them, even large ones like Caligars. He was eventually defeated by Zodak, who swore vengeance against Hssss and all Snake Men after King Hssss devoured Zodak’s brother.
2008 Masters Of The Universe Classics Canon:
The Classics canon provided a complex backstory for King Hssss. Hssss of the Viper House, initially a mere servant, and the Snake Men were created when the Unnamed One magically spliced DNA from three different reptilian races. The Unnamed One sent his new creations, led by King Hssss, to Eternia to steal its magical secrets. Hssss conquered the planet and successfully ruled for three hundred years, until his troops murdered the brother of a young Eternian, D'Vann Grayskull. Swearing to bring justice back to Eternia, Grayskull took up arms against the Snake Men, building a rebellion that eventually became a kingdom.
Sometime after the invasion of the Horde, the armies of King Hssss, King Grayskull, and Hordak called a truce and built the Three Towers. Hordak’s betrayal, which resulted in the First Ultimate Battleground, left King Hssss vulnerable. Zodak and the Council of Elders cast the Snake Men into the Void, where they remained trapped for five thousand years.
During his exile in the Void, King Hssss used the Staff of Ka to invoke the power of eldritch deities and transform himself into a serpentine demigod. Fearing Hssss would breach the Void, the Council of Elders called upon He-Ra to retrieve the staff, which she succeeded in doing. Without the staff, Hssss’s few strands of "loathsome" human DNA reasserted themselves and returned him to a slightly altered version of his human form. King Hssss and his army were finally freed by Kobra Khan and Evil-Lyn, they found He-Man and the Masters of the Universe already fighting Skeletor and his forces for control of Eternia and the secrets hidden within Castle Grayskull. Setting his sights on the same prize, Hssss relied heavily on Khan’s knowledge of present-day Eternia and launched an a ssault on Eternia with Serpos. After poisoning the Sorceress with his venom, Hssss was defeated and decapitated by Zodak. Kept alive by dark magic, Hssss regenerated and retreated to Serpos's ruined temple in Subternia. While underground, Hssss resurrected Megator as a zombie and used the Serpent’s Ring to transform Man-At-Arms and Mekaneck into Snake Men. With his ranks bolstered, Hssss returned to the surface to find Skeletor on the throne and fighting Hordak for dominance. Obtaining Skeletor’s powerful Havoc Staff, King Hssss joined the Horde to the combined forces of the Masters of the Universe and Skeletor’s Evil Warriors. Hssss was killed when Orko successfully cast the Spell of Separation, essentially destroying the entire race of Snake Men.
King Hssss was briefly resurrected by the Unnamed One fifteen years after his death. After Hssss revealed that the Tablet of Separation had been the key to his defeat, the Unnamed One destroyed him as punishment for his failure.
2012 MOTU DC Comics Canon:
The 2012 DC comics differed somewhat from earlier depictions of King Hssss. Hssss and his Snake Men were the original life forms on Eternia, the first planet of the universe. Hssss was banished to the Ring of Death in Subternia when he attempted to steal the power of the Goddess, whom the Snake Men worshiped as Serpos. It was unknown when he escaped or for how long he roamed Eternia. His primary objective was to resurrect and return his people to Eternia as conquerors and resume his rule. King Hssss had the ability to consume an individual from the inside and wear their skin. It was revealed that he caused the Gar betrayal that led to King Grayskull’s death. He also at some point consumed King Randor and wore his skin. He later began to consume Prince Adam and even controlled him for a period of time. Prince Adam’s spirit rejected King Hssss, who was forcibly torn out of the dying prince’s body. Adam killed Hssss, but not before Hssss magically caused the death of the entire race of Snake Men.
- King Hssss was voiced by Brian Dobson, in the MYP 200X Cartoons.
- King Hise never appeared in the Filmation Cartoons, because it ended before the Snake Men were introduced.
- King Hiss’s snake form was very different in the newspaper strip. He wore a red cape and possessed a single snake head, much like the other Snake Men.
1983 Mattel MOTU Mini-Comic Appearances:
1984 MOTU World Annual Book Appearances:
1985 US MOTU Magazine Appearances:
1986 MOTU Marvel/Star Comic Appearances:
1986 MOTU UK Magazine Comic Appearances:
1987 MOTU UK Adventure Magazine Comic Appearances:
2002 MOTU MYP Animated Series Appearances:
2002 MOTU MVCreations Special Comic Appearances:
2003 MOTU MVCreations "Rise Of The Snake Men" Comic Appearances:
2004 MOTU MVCreations #3: Comic Appearances:
2008 MOTU Classics Mini-Comic Appearances:
2013 DC Ongoing Comic Appearances:
2014 DC MOTU The Eternity War Comics:
2018 DC Comics: Injustice vs MOTU Appearances: