Masters Of The Universe #3
Image Comics/MV Creations (February, 2003)“The Shard Of Darkness” part 3 WRITER/COLORIST: Val Staples PENCILER: Emiliano Santalucia (assisted by Enza Fontana) INKERS: Marco Failla & Pierre-Andre Dery COLOR ASSISTS: Shaynne Corbett & Mark Sweeney SELECTED COVER ART: Brett Both, Joe Weems, & Val Stalpes LETTERING: Dreamer Design EDITORS: Heather Schneider, Jeremy Padawer, Geoff Walker, & Ricardo Crespo
Evil-Lyn promises to lead He-Man to the Shakarran Crystal. Despite misgivings she leads him through a secret tunnel into Snake Mountain and the Crystal. Of course it’s a trap but He-Man, like Orko, is possessed by the dark power of the shard and now he wants the full crystal. Evil-Lyn, Trapjaw, and Tri-Klops manage to overpower him, but the shard falls into the hand of Skeletor! Meanwhile, Man-At-Arms listens to Orko go on about his days back in Trolla, but also how he can’t stop thinking about the shard. Duncan puts two and two together and races to get the Masters to save He-Man not from Skeletor, but the shard!
What they got right: Of course it was a trap and I would have been surprised if it hadn’t been. Having He-Man not immune to the Crystal shows how strong its draw is. While I’m hoping he powers his way through and breaks the spell over him, I’m glad it didn’t happen this soon in the story, since the drama is there.
What they got wrong: The first page seems like it continues directly from the last page of the previous issue. It makes it too obvious that this was written with the trade in mind, and is just an odd flow from one issue to the next, since there’s a gap of a month between issues. Maybe a quick page (taken out when printed in trade of course) to recap might have helped for this format. Unless they were going for a “commercial break” vibe or something but again, a month between comics.
Recommendation: Still a very good story, toning the heavy thudding of the show down to a good level while keeping the action high enough. Still recommending this one. The next issue ends this miniseries.