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Thread: Olesker's Thread: "You've Got Questions, I've Got Answers"

  1. #401
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    So I just started watching New Adventures and my brother said you had a thread, so this is awesome! I did have a few critiques and questions. This is about the show in general, and not you, per se. If you can speak about any of it, it would be fantastic! Sorry for being all over the map.

    1) I love the camp and morality of the series was held over from the Filmation series. I am very OK with this. I loved 200x and needed to watch the original a few times to understand the approach of the old series, but coming off of that, it was great this series maintained that same spirit. Well-done!

    2) I "get" what you were trying to do with Skeletor. Some were calling him Fire Marshall Bill and such, but in spirit he's just another take on the scheming and manipulating he would do otherwise. It was a different take, and Alan Oppenheimer certainly set the bar, but this Skeletor did the job adequately. His laugh I'd like to forget.

    3) This series had a Thundercats vibe from me: Great theme animation, lower-quality animation in the series itself. Like a MOTUC toy, you can have the best minds on it, but it only takes bad art and paint to throw off a great concept. The colors were very muted and drab. What a shame.

    4) Shuki Levy and Haim Saban did the music. Interesting take but a rare misfire IMO. It doesn't grab you like it does for the old series, She-Ra, and Power Rangers.

    5) Master Sebrian (sp?) and his vernacular. It is such a put-off. I get he's a clerical figure and all, but that "power of the good and the way of the magic" was very heavy-handed and had an almost religious undertone. I know he was speaking in prophecies and such, but he reminded me of speaking Bible verses. It literally accurate, but it's a very unappealing style of spoken word. I hope that makes sense. It is especially weird given he's a "future" character, not that there's future speak. I will say I am glad they didn't use slang, or verbiage of the time.

    6) The lack of his shield...again. Once again his sword deflects beams. Why not his shield? Was this animation taboo?

    7) I see the new joke characters are these Scientists. I get their function. I also see why folks don't care for them. I understand them, however. It sounds odd, but the negative talk about how bad this series was made me pleasantly surprised how much better I thought it would be.

    8) I have much more to watch, but how deep does character development go? So far Flipshot and Hydron seem kind of interchangeable personality-wise. I do know Slush-Head has a romantic partner and Mara and Crita get battle-ready costumes.

    9) The production...maybe the music...it seems bland. Nothing grabs at you. It seems very "Canadian". If you've seen the 4Kids Sonic X series or GI Joe Sigma 6, you understand. No memorable or signature music. The color palette is very muted and drab as well. Neither helped the series.

    10) Who designed the characters and weapons: Mattel or the animators?

    11) Is the Mark Taylor on this series the same as the Mark Taylor who did toy designs on the vintage line?

    12) What do you think of the MOTUC figures of the NA characters this far? Any you'd like to see personally?

  2. #402
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    Welcome to the thread. I hope you continue to enjoy NA. You may find this Masterscast interview -- in which I answered a lot of behind-the-scenes questions about NA -- to be interesting. http://masterscast.com/?p=46

    Now to your questions and observations:

    5. You're correct about Master Sebrian speaking in a Biblical manner. If you'll read my "Primus' identity to be revealed" thread -- and it's kind of fun to read the posts beginning-to-end in order -- you'll have an understanding of why he does so. http://www.he-man.org/forums/boards/...rimus+Revealed For a long time orgers had been speculating as to what Primus really was -- Earth at another time, Eternia at another time, etc. So I think we had a lot of fun with this thread that finally revealed Primus' true identity.

    As for Sebrian, it's true I occasionally inject theological matters in a subtle way in my work and he was a vehicle for this. It's never my intention to foist my views upon others, and I always want to be respectful of other's belief or non-belief. So that's why I try to be subtle rather than heavy-handed. I also feel the Bible offers great stories and that they can work in other areas of entertainment as well, proven aptly by the Star Wars franchise. I get that you find Sebrian's manner of speaking it "unappealing", but bear in mind that that's your subjective opinion, which you are certainly entitled to and which I respect. But I've had many other fans that found it appealing.

    6. Could you please clarify this question?

    8. NA's character development, as you'll see when you watch the rest of the series, goes extremely deep. I've always felt that the best entertainment is character-driven -- i.e., what do characters think, what compells them to act as they do, how do they feel about each other? To me this makes them more relatable and makes viewers care more about them when they are in jeopardy than they would if the characters were simple one-dimensional creatures going at it in battle with each other. To put it another way, we may not be able to recall scene-by-scene what happens in each Star Wars fim, each Rocky film or each Spider-man film, but we that like those films can sit down and write chapter and verse on Han Solo's personality, Darth Vader's, Rocky Balboa's, Apollo Creed's, Spidey's. This is because of the depth of their characters created by the writers. It's characters, imo, that drive the dramatic thrust of a series, so my work is always character-driven.

    10. Great question. The two waves of main characters -- e.g., He-man, Skelly, Slushhead, Flogg, Hydron, Flipshot, Sagitaur -- were designed by Mattel. Mattel, however, gave me the latitutde to develop some of my character, which I did with Sebrian, Grot, Drissi, Caz, the scientists (regrettably) and my personal favorite, Crita. In those cases I created and described the characters, just as I did with many of the characters that appeared in only one episode. In those cases the artists at KKC&D took my descriptions and did renderings of the characters.

    11. The Mark Taylor you refer to is not the artist. Mark, now retired, was a television executive who began his career at DIC Entertainment and then moved to Jetlag and Columbia/Sony before becoming VP and General Manager of Nickelodeon for a long, long run. He's one of my oldest friends in the industry, a true gentleman and an inspirational producer. http://www.awn.com/news/people/mark-...imation-studio

    12. I love the MOTUC NA characters. The Four Horsemen are geniuses, and I rarely use that term. I would be thrilled to see Crita become the next NA MOTUC character.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jun-Yor View Post
    So I just started watching New Adventures and my brother said you had a thread, so this is awesome! I did have a few critiques and questions. This is about the show in general, and not you, per se. If you can speak about any of it, it would be fantastic! Sorry for being all over the map.

    1) I love the camp and morality of the series was held over from the Filmation series. I am very OK with this. I loved 200x and needed to watch the original a few times to understand the approach of the old series, but coming off of that, it was great this series maintained that same spirit. Well-done!

    2) I "get" what you were trying to do with Skeletor. Some were calling him Fire Marshall Bill and such, but in spirit he's just another take on the scheming and manipulating he would do otherwise. It was a different take, and Alan Oppenheimer certainly set the bar, but this Skeletor did the job adequately. His laugh I'd like to forget.

    3) This series had a Thundercats vibe from me: Great theme animation, lower-quality animation in the series itself. Like a MOTUC toy, you can have the best minds on it, but it only takes bad art and paint to throw off a great concept. The colors were very muted and drab. What a shame.

    4) Shuki Levy and Haim Saban did the music. Interesting take but a rare misfire IMO. It doesn't grab you like it does for the old series, She-Ra, and Power Rangers.

    5) Master Sebrian (sp?) and his vernacular. It is such a put-off. I get he's a clerical figure and all, but that "power of the good and the way of the magic" was very heavy-handed and had an almost religious undertone. I know he was speaking in prophecies and such, but he reminded me of speaking Bible verses. It literally accurate, but it's a very unappealing style of spoken word. I hope that makes sense. It is especially weird given he's a "future" character, not that there's future speak. I will say I am glad they didn't use slang, or verbiage of the time.

    6) The lack of his shield...again. Once again his sword deflects beams. Why not his shield? Was this animation taboo?

    7) I see the new joke characters are these Scientists. I get their function. I also see why folks don't care for them. I understand them, however. It sounds odd, but the negative talk about how bad this series was made me pleasantly surprised how much better I thought it would be.

    8) I have much more to watch, but how deep does character development go? So far Flipshot and Hydron seem kind of interchangeable personality-wise. I do know Slush-Head has a romantic partner and Mara and Crita get battle-ready costumes.

    9) The production...maybe the music...it seems bland. Nothing grabs at you. It seems very "Canadian". If you've seen the 4Kids Sonic X series or GI Joe Sigma 6, you understand. No memorable or signature music. The color palette is very muted and drab as well. Neither helped the series.

    10) Who designed the characters and weapons: Mattel or the animators?

    11) Is the Mark Taylor on this series the same as the Mark Taylor who did toy designs on the vintage line?

    12) What do you think of the MOTUC figures of the NA characters this far? Any you'd like to see personally?
    Last edited by Heeeere's Olesker!; January 9, 2013 at 05:49pm.

  3. #403
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heeeere's Olesker! View Post
    I can't speak to the UK. It's possible that there was an early release because of their popularity in the mini-comics, but I really don't know. All I can tell you is the sequence in which they were presented to me and Mattel's request regarding which characters they wanted the most emphasis on.
    There were differences between the UK and the US in terms of the names of the characters, so there are likely to have been other differences too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Heeeere's Olesker! View Post
    By the way, in case you haven't listened to it, check out the Masters Cast podcast interview with me. It's must-listening for NA fans and will answer a lot of questions as well as give you some behind-the-scenes 411. Here's a link: http://masterscast.com/?p=46
    Thanks for bringing this to our attention. I hope to get a chance to listen to it this weekend.
    Supporter of the New Adventures of He-Man
    Motu fan and collector since 1984

  4. #404
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    I was wondering. When the animation was planned, did the early concept meetings have "Dare son of He-man" or "Skeleteen son of Skeletor" discussions? Was the main cast always He-man and Skeletor from the beginning, from what you can remember?

    There seems to be some speculations, as apparently Mattel has dug concept of "Skeleteen" from some internal documents. Apparently Dare son of He-man was the very original concept for NA, but I wonder if these things had been ironed out when you got involved?

    Here is discussion about the subject:
    http://www.he-man.org/forums/boards/...he-late-1980-s

  5. #405
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    Neither were presented to me by Mattel. The main cast was always He-man and Skeletor from the beginning of my association with the project.

    Quote Originally Posted by Invicta View Post
    I was wondering. When the animation was planned, did the early concept meetings have "Dare son of He-man" or "Skeleteen son of Skeletor" discussions? Was the main cast always He-man and Skeletor from the beginning, from what you can remember?

    There seems to be some speculations, as apparently Mattel has dug concept of "Skeleteen" from some internal documents. Apparently Dare son of He-man was the very original concept for NA, but I wonder if these things had been ironed out when you got involved?

    Here is discussion about the subject:
    http://www.he-man.org/forums/boards/...he-late-1980-s

  6. #406
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    01) In the episode "Sword & Staff" was there a particular name for the crystal that transforms Skeletor?
    02) In the episode "The Sheriff Of Gorn City". Does the members of the "Ugly Bunch" have names?
    03) In the episode "Glasnost Schmasnost" does the female leader of the Galactic Council have a name?
    04) I noticed that Primus has two moons. I know one of them was named Enos. Is there a name for the second?

  7. #407
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    I believe there was, but I can't recall. I'm betting Wacky Martin will have the answer.

    I don't believe so, but I thought the gang's name was fun.

    Not sure. I didn't write that episode.

    Are you talking about Nordor? If so, Nordor was once a part of Primus, but got separated from its orbit and ended up being a skull-shaped moon of Flogg's home planet, Denebria.


    Quote Originally Posted by Clawful94 View Post
    01) In the episode "Sword & Staff" was there a particular name for the crystal that transforms Skeletor?
    02) In the episode "The Sheriff Of Gorn City". Does the members of the "Ugly Bunch" have names?
    03) In the episode "Glasnost Schmasnost" does the female leader of the Galactic Council have a name?
    04) I noticed that Primus has two moons. I know one of them was named Enos. Is there a name for the second?

  8. #408
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    I know for sure that the leader of the Ugly Bunch was mentioned as Trylok, or something to that effect. Was one of my favorite episodes. The members of the gang were very intriguing to me. Very cool.

    In the episode "Escape From Gaolotia", Drissi and Caz were looking for a member of their herd at night and there was two moons shown in the sky of Primus. I know that Misty Taggart wrote that episode, I was wondering if the two moons were shown again and if the second had a name.

    P.S. I really loved the episodes "The Gift" to the "Battle For Levaton".

  9. #409
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    I'm not sure about the two moons. As you say, Misty wrote the episode. That episode was story-edited by Jack Mendelsohn, so I really had nothing to do with it. What I am sure of is that Misty wrote a great script. I wish she could have written more episodes. She's extremely talented.

    Quote Originally Posted by Clawful94 View Post
    I know for sure that the leader of the Ugly Bunch was mentioned as Trylok, or something to that effect. Was one of my favorite episodes. The members of the gang were very intriguing to me. Very cool.

    In the episode "Escape From Gaolotia", Drissi and Caz were looking for a member of their herd at night and there was two moons shown in the sky of Primus. I know that Misty Taggart wrote that episode, I was wondering if the two moons were shown again and if the second had a name.

    P.S. I really loved the episodes "The Gift" to the "Battle For Levaton".

  10. #410
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    I've a question for you, it is in regards to the design origin of the figure variants.
    Well I'm pretty sure Hook'em Brakk (my favorite motu figure by the way) came from planet of junk where flogg sees his reflection as a man at arms disguise, too tall Hoove is a given just like disks of doom skeletor, but what about Missile Armor Icarius???
    We have all gone a bit silly trying to get the action figure variant but I don't ever remember seeing him anywhere in the series?

  11. #411
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    I'd love to tell you I understand what you're talking about so I can give you an answer, but I don't. It could be that you're talking about the comics, which I know nothing about.

    Would anyone else care to chime in here and help out with answering Atlas' question?

    Quote Originally Posted by atlas0413 View Post
    I've a question for you, it is in regards to the design origin of the figure variants.
    Well I'm pretty sure Hook'em Brakk (my favorite motu figure by the way) came from planet of junk where flogg sees his reflection as a man at arms disguise, too tall Hoove is a given just like disks of doom skeletor, but what about Missile Armor Icarius???
    We have all gone a bit silly trying to get the action figure variant but I don't ever remember seeing him anywhere in the series?

  12. #412
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    Sorry, my message did seem a bit confusing, I will be a bit more to the point,
    Did flipshot ever appear in a costume in any tv episodes that resembled his action figure from the last wave of NA toys by Mattel (the missile armor icarius variant toy) or where did Mattel get the design for that toy from?
    I'm sure that the toys for too tall Hoove, DOD skeletor and Hook'em flogg/brakk were from designs that appeared in the tv episodes ( see my last post)

    Or we're some of Mattel's variant toys just created at Mattel to " sell more toys" so to speak.

    Quote Originally Posted by Heeeere's Olesker! View Post
    I'd love to tell you I understand what you're talking about so I can give you an answer, but I don't. It could be that you're talking about the comics, which I know nothing about.

    Would anyone else care to chime in here and help out with answering Atlas' question?

  13. #413
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    I'll answer the question about the variants for Hydron, Flipshot, Flogg and Hoove, and to a lesser degree Kayo, Optikk, He-Man and Skeletor.

    In the last couple of episodes, in preparation for a climactic battle, both the Mutants and then the Galactic Guardians visited the Blacksmith of Crelus to get upgraded weapons. Although they didn't match the toys, they got similar outfits or weapons to the toys.

    There's a prototype toy out there that is similar to Kayo that people think would've been the toy version of him. Nothing has been seen for Optikk ever, but I'd guess there would have been to balance the numbers.

    He-Man never changed his look in the show despite two variant toys. Skeletor changed his look twice, first to his Disks of Doom outfit and then in the last quarter of the series to his toy look without the helmet, which he loses on Zil.

    Hope that answers that.

  14. #414
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    Thanks a lot for that, Dagar. As many know, I'm not a collector -- although I really enjoy interacting with collectors -- so I'm lost when it comes to these matters.

    Again, thanks for jumping in with the answers, Dagar.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dagar View Post
    I'll answer the question about the variants for Hydron, Flipshot, Flogg and Hoove, and to a lesser degree Kayo, Optikk, He-Man and Skeletor.

    In the last couple of episodes, in preparation for a climactic battle, both the Mutants and then the Galactic Guardians visited the Blacksmith of Crelus to get upgraded weapons. Although they didn't match the toys, they got similar outfits or weapons to the toys.

    There's a prototype toy out there that is similar to Kayo that people think would've been the toy version of him. Nothing has been seen for Optikk ever, but I'd guess there would have been to balance the numbers.

    He-Man never changed his look in the show despite two variant toys. Skeletor changed his look twice, first to his Disks of Doom outfit and then in the last quarter of the series to his toy look without the helmet, which he loses on Zil.

    Hope that answers that.

  15. #415
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    Here's one for you, Jack; do you remember working on a French cartoon show called Michael Valiant, or Michel Vaillant in its original language? Might also be known as Heroes On Hot Wheels. I believe this would have been a French co-production or a dub job.

    I just rediscovered it recently on YouTube. Had been trying to recall forever the racing show with a nasty girl in it with short hair.

  16. #416
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    Absolutely, Dagar. That was a really fun racing series I wrote for Jean Chalopin back when he owned Jetlag in 1990. It was interesting because it was intended to be a sort of blend between Hot Wheels and a French racing champion from a comic in the 1950s named Michel Valliant. I collaborated with a wonderful pair of French writers named Dominique Prive and Patrick Vanetti. and was fortunate enough to be flown to Paris to work with them on it for an extended period of time. We wrote a total of sixty-five episodes. The series was sponsored by Mattel, ran on Family Channel in the U.S. and France 3 in France. The two young writers were great guys and had me to their homes for dinner and to shoot pool. Not a bad gig.

    A lot of the locales for the series were set in France, so I suppose it helped that I've done a lot of work for French television, had spent a good deal of time there and was familiar with the country.

    Thanks for bringing back a nice memory.

    Btw, this thread recently passed 50,000 views and, as many here know, I like to take a moment at each 10,000 view mark to thank the fans for letting me be a small part of he-man.org.

    50,000 is, I guess a special kind of landmark. I appreciate all of the orgers' comments and criticisms. This has been a wonderful experience for me and I'm delighted to be here on the board.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dagar View Post
    Here's one for you, Jack; do you remember working on a French cartoon show called Michael Valiant, or Michel Vaillant in its original language? Might also be known as Heroes On Hot Wheels. I believe this would have been a French co-production or a dub job.

    I just rediscovered it recently on YouTube. Had been trying to recall forever the racing show with a nasty girl in it with short hair.
    Last edited by Heeeere's Olesker!; July 13, 2013 at 07:41pm.

  17. #417
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    I'm starting to watch this. I gotta ask, why does Skeletor not recognize Prince Adam whenever he comes face to face with him?

  18. #418
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    1) The space travel wiped out cells in the section of Skeletor's brain that would have enabled him to remember Adam, 2) he remembered him; he just didn't make a big deal out of it so he could use it later or 3) as we Catholics say when we're looking for a way to cover ourselves, "It's a mystery of our faith.

    Seriously, you caught us in a mistake.

    Quote Originally Posted by Class316 View Post
    I'm starting to watch this. I gotta ask, why does Skeletor not recognize Prince Adam whenever he comes face to face with him?

  19. #419
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    The series bible actually mentions that he picks up the toga on Primus, not Eternia, and that there was supposed to be a hood on it that Adam would lift whenever he came into contact with Skeletor to try and hide himself. Broke down in the execution, they didn't end up doing that and it's just kind of a leap of faith otherwise.

  20. #420
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    It is said that the master carpet weavers of ancient Persia intentionally left a flaw in their masterpieces so as to prove they were not the equals of Allah. That's my excuse when I screw up...on a bi-monthly basis.

  21. #421
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    The continuaty of the series is pretty good. Such a shame the same can't be said about the continuaty in relation to the original series.
    Last edited by Class316; July 19, 2013 at 12:52am.

  22. #422
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    You need to understand that Mattel was and is in the business of selling toys. They are not collectors by trade -- they are toy manufacturers. Someone in some office at Mattel no doubt came to the correct conclusion that consumers would and could only buy so many of the same action figures of He-man and Skeletor and Man-at-Arms and all of the other classic characters. They looked at their graphs and charts and realized that the line had pretty much reached saturation.

    In their desire to keep the line going they decided to move He-man entirely away from Eternia where all there was were characters/action figures that everyone already had reached the limit on in terms of collecting, and to move the primary characters to a new locale where they could meet new protagonists and antagonists, thus creating new action figures.

    In theory it was a sound idea. The execution failed for a variety of reasons that I went into in detail in the Masterscast interview, which you might enjoy listening to in order to gain some behind-the-scenes insight: http://masterscast.com/?p=46

    Thanks for your words about the series' continuity. At the time it was a pretty groundbreaking concept for an animated series and I greatly enjoyed being a part of it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Class316 View Post
    The continuality of the series is pretty good. Such a shame the same can't be said about the continuality in relation to the original series.

  23. #423
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heeeere's Olesker! View Post
    You need to understand that Mattel was and is in the business of selling toys. They are not collectors by trade -- they are toy manufacturers. Someone in some office at Mattel no doubt came to the correct conclusion that consumers would and could only buy so many of the same action figures of He-man and Skeletor and Man-at-Arms and all of the other classic characters. They looked at their graphs and charts and realized that the line had pretty much reached saturation.

    In their desire to keep the line going they decided to move He-man entirely away from Eternia where all there was were characters/action figures that everyone already had reached the limit on in terms of collecting, and to move the primary characters to a new locale where they could meet new protagonists and antagonists, thus creating new action figures.
    I understand that and this is not what I meant. I did not mean in the sense of bringing old characters into NA. I just meant the continuaty in relation to the series it was supposed to be following.

    Examples of what I mean:

    Skeletor has eyes

    Skeletor comes face to face with Prince Adam and does not recognize him

    The sword shooting laser beams

    The character of He-Man and Skeletor are just different, more so Skeletor. Example Skeletor groveling to Flogg (even just pretending to) or having a fling with someone. Just seems out of character for him. I actually enjoy his character in NA but it's just not Skeletor.

    Queen Marlena first discovering that her son is He-Man, when in filmation she acts like she knows

    Teela looking more like She-Ra

    Just to name some.

    For a series that at least tried to maintain continuaty one would have thought things like that would not happen.
    Last edited by Class316; July 19, 2013 at 01:08am.

  24. #424
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    Quote Originally Posted by Class316 View Post
    For a series that at least tried to maintain continuaty one would have thought things like that would not happen.
    That ain't how things worked in the 80s mofo
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  25. #425
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    Skeletor's eyes were a change the animation studio made, over which I had no control as were many art decisions I did not agree with.

    Skeletor not recognizing Adam was an error.

    As for the other elements, people and things change -- their personalities grow in different ways and sometimes women dye their hair. As I detailed in the Masterscast interview, it was definitely my intention to change Skeletor's personality. He was no longer calling all the shots, but rather was joining up with a team of mutants Thus he felt it wise to keep a low profile and get a lay of the land before making his move. But again, people do change. He-man was far away from the source of his power and, thus, was not as physically strong as he was on Eternia. Thus I sought to give him more intellect. Skeletor was already the epitome of evil, so I thought it might be fun to give him a sense of humor or a sense of irony.

    I get that many viewers like things and characters to remain the same and that many were disappointed that they did not in NA. But I wanted to make the series more realistic and in life people develop and grow and change. I'm not saying it was the right decision. I'm simply giving you my reason for why I did certain things. If writers pound out the same personalities and scenarios over and over again then they risk becoming formulaic and then they become hacks And there are plenty of hacks in the entertainment industry. Good writers take risks and I, perhaps a bit immodestly, like to think of myself as a good writer.

    And btw, just so we're clear on this, I thought I was gonna die the first time I heard the scientists voices! But then I was't involved in voice direction

    Again as I said in the interview, if there were two things I could have done differently, it would have been taking Battlecat form Eternia to Primus and not creating the scientists. If there was something I would have wanted Mattel to do it would have been to give the fans a heads-up that He-man's struggle on Primus would only last one season, after which he would return to Eternia to find a very different place than he had left.


    Quote Originally Posted by Class316 View Post
    I understand that and this is not what I meant. I did not mean in the sense of bringing old characters into NA. I just meant the continuaty in relation to the series it was supposed to be following.

    Examples of what I mean:

    Skeletor has eyes

    Skeletor comes face to face with Prince Adam and does not recognize him

    The sword shooting laser beams

    The character of He-Man and Skeletor are just different, more so Skeletor. Example Skeletor groveling to Flogg (even just pretending to) or having a fling with someone. Just seems out of character for him. I actually enjoy his character in NA but it's just not Skeletor.

    Queen Marlena first discovering that her son is He-Man, when in filmation she acts like she knows

    Teela looking more like She-Ra

    Just to name some.

    For a series that at least tried to maintain continuaty one would have thought things like that would not happen.

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