Hordak and his minions arrive on Eternia, in this special "Evil Horde" issue. The Masters of the Universe will never be the same! The price of postage also goes up (coincidence? I think not!), as reflected in the Hordak and Imp 22¢ stamps on the "He-Man Mailbox" pages. There is a lot of great fan-mail this time, including a short fan-fic story (the first?). And the first of many "Create A Character" creatures comes rolling in, a cosmic-looking swordsman, whose name is not given. "Orko's Earth Report" gives a tantalizing teaser to the forthcoming "Secret of the Sword" movie. He-Man's "new friend" She-Ra is introduced, but all that is said about her relationship to He-Man is: "She's a super ally with an amazing secret," obviously in an effort to contain the fact that She-Ra is He-Man's sister.
Feature Story: "The Legend of Hordak"
In a narrated comic story, a concerned Teela asks her father what he knows about Hordak, the new threat that has come to Eternia. Man-At-Arms relates the story of the Horde overlord, how he and Skeletor first met, their alliance of evil, and the inevitable betrayal that severed their partnership forever. Man-At-Arms ends his tale with Hordak's banishment to Etheria, and his vow of vengeance on Skeletor, and anyone else who stands in his way. Teela wonders how Eternia will manage to withstand against the Horde, as well as Skeletor's evil. He-Man, who has been listening in, declares that the struggle may be twice as hard, but so will the rewards be, when the victory is won. Note: Man-At-Arms' story places Modulok as a member of the Horde prior to Skeletor's induction. An inconsequential plot point, but one that is contradicted practically everywhere else.
Feature Story II: "The Stone of Nimyar"
In this beautifully illustrated text story, Orko, feeling useless and unimportant after a major magic trick goes wrong, runs away to the Swamps of Gangoon. There, he stumbles upon Skeletor, about to hatch his most evil plot to date! The lord of destruction has uncovered the Stone of Nimyar, hidden long ago by the Ancients in the Forbidden Cave of the Nimyar Warriors. It is with good reason that this stone was concealed: it possesses an evil magic, that saps the energies of goodness when in proximity to the stone! And now Skeletor has the stone, and Orko too, captured while trying to return to the Palace to warn He-Man. With Orko as his prisoner, Skeletor lures He-Man, Man-At-Arms, and Teela to Snake Mountain. The Stone of Nimyar's eerie evil power goes to work, and Skeletor is quick to take advantage of our heroes' sudden, unexplained weakness. As Skeletor, Two Bad and Spikor are mopping up the floor with Eternia's defenders, Orko slips away, and sets out to get rid of the stone and save his friends. Although he too is weakening, Orko is able to drag the stone to the edge of a cliff, and push it over, into the deep river at the bottom of the Great Chasm. With the Stone of Nimyar gone, He-Man and company quickly recover, and make short work of Skeletor and crew. He-Man, Man-At-Arms and Teela thank Orko for saving them, and they all return to the palace, Orko realizing that even if his magic sometimes goes wrong, he is able to accomplish great things when the situation demands.
Puzzles and Activities
"The Sketch Pad" walks through the step-by-step details of drawing life-like renditions of Castle Grayskull, Orko, Skeletor, and Cringer. A heroic warrior is concealed within the large scene of Skeletor and Webstor skulking through the forest. By folding in the page, the "hidden hero" is revealed. "Computer Pun" details a riddle formulated by Roboto's computer brain (who knew that he had printer capabilities?). By answering a series of simple questions, then rearranging the letters of your answers, you can decipher the punch line of Roboto's joke about Teela and Adam. This issue's inside back cover features a corrected "Secret of the Sword" movie ad, with Hordak, Mantenna, and Leech taking the places of Beast Man, Mer-Man, and Tri-Klops.
Poster #6 is a special "Secret of the Sword" preview, featuring exclusive scenes from the movie, coming soon to a theater near you (well, in 1985, at least)! Scenes depicted include Adora leaving the Fright Zone incognito, He-Man destroying a Destructo-Tank with one punch, and He-Man and She-Ra watching in amazement as She-Ra's sword hovers in the air before them. Poster #7 presents Hordak and his Horde, in all their evil glory! Earl Norem has outdone himself this time; Hordak has never looked so wicked and powerful, as lightning bolts blast from his fingertips! Behind him, Grizzlor, Leech, Mantenna, Modulok, and Imp, lurk menacingly, as the (Filmation version) Fright Zone sprawls in the distance.
Joe Hansen of Illinois returned a wallet he had found, containing more than $1,000! For his honesty, he received a $100 reward, and the distinction of being named he-man of the issue!
The back cover of issue #3 advertises a Post Cereals-sponsored Toys "R" Us shopping spree contest. Included in the prizes being carted off by the lucky winner are Castle Grayskull, Battle Armor Skeletor, and Clawful driving a Battle Ram.