Wednesday, January 30, 2013


Masters of the Universe #7, “Long Live the King,” is by Carlin, Wilson, and Bulanadi. Here, Skeletor conjures up a band of new minions to try to capture the Royal Palace.

Wow – that’s actually a very solid plan by you, Skeletor: good planning, intelligent deployment of minions, a clever ruse – all in all, nicely done. Carlin also does us the courtesy of giving us a plausible explanation for Faker successfully impersonating He-Man (he also gives us another “holy swamoli,” though, so I’m not letting him off the hook just yet).

In this issue, Carlin turns his double-barreled character development cannon onto King Randor: Randor is feeling washed up, and is trying to recapture his glory days as a warrior (Carlin also sets up a potential parallel of Randor’s confidence issues with Skeletor’s, but does nothing with it). That’s a potentially very interesting topic for exploration, but Carlin’s Randor is a low-self esteem buffoon, moping around the castle, letting his wife and his bodyguard tell him where to go and what to do, and not taking charge of anything. Naturally, inexplicably knocking out Faker (a robot) with one hit swings his pendulum to the other extreme, and the issue climaxes with him taking names and, somehow, shooting magic out of his hands (insert the Eternian Viagra joke of your choice here). It doesn’t help matters that other characters, most notably Clamp Champ, are overtly one-dimensional. One can get away with these sorts of things fairly easily in cartoon format; here, they’re quite a bit more glaring (these comics are geared toward a young audience, not a brain damaged audience).

By necessity (the necessity of plugging as many different toys in this comic as possible, that is), Blast-Attak is given a completely new origin – he’s no longer a Snake Man, and he may not even be a robot. Here, too, we’re back to the Sorceress being unable to leave Grayskull in human form, a device the mini-comics did away with when she got her own action figure the Three Towers appeared.

Nothing new to say about the art; overall, it’s pretty good.

There’s a good story here trying to get out, but the characters are handled too clumsily to get the reader to invest in it.


Read it HERE