Masters Of The Universe v3 #8
Image Comics/MV Creations (December, 2004)
STORY: Emiliano Santalucia & Val Staples
WRITER: Ryan Foley
ARTIST: Fabio Laguna
COLORIST: James Offredi (assisted by Diedre Vante, Rod Hannah, & Rex Stabbs)
SELECTED COVER ART: Mike O’Hare & Jeremy Roberts
LETTERER: Ed Dukeshire
EDITORS: Vicki Jaeger, Monica Lopez, & Geoff Walker
After Orko’s attempt to spice up one of Man-E-Faces performances just causes trouble, Orko decides again that he was better off on Trolla, where he could control the magic and was a great wizard, even known as Orko The Great. Again the spell takes time, so the Sorceress sends Orko, aided by He-Man and Battlecat, to find something she needs to create the spell at the home of the Oracle that once served King Grayskull, for whom the castle is named (as shown in the 2000s TV show). The Oracle isn’t present but a only a shadow of him is there because Orko is “too early”. However, he gives Orko a choice between a bottle containing the needed component or the map to something that will aid him on Eternia. Sand worms smash into the ruins, forcing Orko to make his choice quickly, and he chooses the map…which leads him to his lost magic wand, which may allow him to better control his magic while on Eternia.
What they got right: While the concept is similar to the season one episode “Lessons”, there are enough differences here to make it stand out. There’s a visual not to Dree-Elle and Montork in Orko’s flashback. Adam knows how to get permission from his father by choosing a time where the King doesn’t have time to argue the point, which is a fun moment. And Orko comes off better not because he feels better but because he might be able to better control his magic now…and with both the comic and television series ending at this time contradiction isn’t a problem. The story team also decides to confirm that the Oracle is in fact Trollan as he appeared to be in the flashback episode “The Power Of Grayskull”, which told the origin of He-Man’s power.
What they got wrong: Originally I was going to note here that “Lessons” already told this story, but it’s different enough that I can overlook it. Otherwise this wasn’t a bad story to end on.
Other notes: For those who didn’t follow the re-imagined show, Orko’s wand took the place of the medallion from the similar Orko origin from the original series, probably because they took the “O” off of Orko’s shirt and replaced it with a medallion with an “O” on it.
Recommendation: The comic version of the remade series was actually really good…possibly because it didn’t attempt to use the thundering booms that the remake did to show how superpowerful the characters were. I highly recommend this run as an example of how to do this right, with my only complaint having been how Cringer/Battlecat was such a non-character in this series. If you can find the MV Creations comics–either from Crossgen, Image, or their self-published period–you should give it a try.