"The Return of Granamyr" classic episode review thread
Dipping back into season one for this weeks episode review thread, to one I'm surprised hasn't been done before... "The Return of Granamyr". :orgrin:
Brief plot overview:
He-Man, joined by Man-At-Arms, heads to Darksmoke after Granamyr has requested to see him. Granamyr introduces them to Torm, the youngest of the Darksmoke dragons, who wishes to marry a human girl called Lyra, but her father is demanding a test. He-Man is chosen to champion Torm. But a jealous evil wizard called Zim wants Lyra as his bride, and is determined to ruin He-Man's test...
Let's hear what you have to say on this notable episode.
My own review to follow sometime whenever... :)
"The Return of Granamyr" episode review
"The Return of Granamyr" is a later season one episode that at first I wasn't too keen on, but have come to really like.
The way the Sorceress appears to He-Man and Man-At-Arms is Castle Grayskull is strange and off character; she appears almost like a ghost. I suppose she had transported herself from elsewhere in the Castle, but none-the-less it struck me as a little odd.
Granamyr's return is a welcome one. I loved him in "The Dragon's Gift", which stands as one of my all-time favourite episodes as the series.
When I first watched this episode, I cringed at the introduction of Torm, a "cute little dragon" relation, but over time I have come to bear him, and he doesn't play a big enough part in the overall episode to mar it.
The design of Zim the evil wizard is recycled from the first season episode "A Friend In Need", and notably resembles Ming the Merciless from 'Flash Gordon'. Lyra is a recycled design too.
In the night-time scene, when Zim sends his demon to get rid of He-Man and Man-At-Arms, it marks one of only two times in the series that we see Man-At-Arms without his helmet (the other being season one's "Eternal Darkness"). We also see his armor by his bed; and it is seen that his body is natural flesh tone, confirming that the green is part of his costume.
When He-Man foils the demon's attack, Man-At-Arms gets dressed in seconds, which is very unbelievable, and would have much better to have seen him in his night attire.
The music editing during this whole scene is extremely choppy, to the point of being very distracting.
I love He-Man's challenge, to find the silver apple in the maze.
The scene where he has a tug-of-war with the centaur is absolutely wonderful (helped even more by the backing music). This whole sequence has heavy mythical overtones, which I always longed to see more of in the series. I wished that this centaur character had featured again in the series, and I shall never know why Mattel never released a centaur figure, as it would have fitted the line perfectly. (There are several rumored on-paper prototypes for such a character, but it never saw the light of day.)
After He-Man outwits him in the maze, Zim summons Shadow Wing, an evil dragon and Granamyr's old enemy. Shadow Wing is the much-used standard dragon design, dating back to "The Dragon Invasion".
Shadow Wing turns Zim into a frog. The whole Shadow Wing section of the story feels slightly tacked on, as if it deserved its own episode, and Zim is completely forgotten about.
Of course, in the end of the day, good triumphs.
When I first viewed this episode, I wasn't too keen on it. After the powerful classic "The Dragon's Gift", it seemed a bit of an anti-climax. Much of my initial dislike was the addition of Torm who, as I mentioned above, struck me as a "cute little dragon", and somewhat took away from Granamyr's original grouchiness and majesty. But as I have re-watched the episode, I have come to appreciate it in its own right. I love the mythical / medieval elements of the story, something that was a key part of the early mini-comics and something that I always longed to be played up more in the series.
All-in-all, I give this episode a favourable 9 out of 10.