Did We Just Become Best Friends?
Written by: Dan Abnett
Art by: Pop Mhan, Mark Roberts and Deron Bennett
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: February 24, 2016
Review by: Branden Murray
He-Man and I go way back. There were many days and evenings spent setting up He-Man action figures, BattleCats, vehicles, castles, and weapons which lead to carefully orchestrated encounters between my brother and I. We literally had a giant moving box full of He-Man shit and to me, all my other toys failed to live up to the hype in comparison … except my Captain Power's Ejecting Seat Jet! I could shoot at the TV screen and it included an interactive VHS tape...Legit!. Okay, so basically to summarize how this review came to be, I love He-Man and Eric "forgot" to do the review for this epilogue of the Eternity War story arc. Those qualifications I possessed were satisfactory enough for Jim so he offered me the chance to do this review with the promise of never being handsomely compensated ... I mean ever. (Jim's Note: EVER!) Strangely that was all good enough for me and the girls I hang with, so let's see how He-Man’s hanging in there now that he no longer has Uncle Skeletor to push around.
We kick things off with some beautiful eye porn of He-Man charged up and coming straight at us in a beautiful splash page rendered by Pop Mhan. This page looks so good I think DC needs to hire Pop to start all their issues with He-Man coming straight at you on page one. To clarify, I mean for all the DC titles across the line, it really sets a nice tone. Anyway from here we see He-man is really just dreaming of a renewed Eternia and the Masters of the Universe being reborn better than ever before.
However as he awakes we see Adam lying in a Castle Grayskull bedroom contemplating how the future has never seemed so uncertain. He looks out over his Kingdom and sees Zodac, who is basically a cosmic overseer in this universe. He tells Adam that the uncertain future is a blessing of choice that He-Man has given the people. Because of this, Zodac is no longer needed, telling Adam instead to “look to Grayskull because it’s always been more than just power” and that “he must decide what it means to him”. Zodac has never been one to be straightforward! This all seems very cryptic and open-ended, especially for an epilogue to a great story that just wrapped up in impressive fashion. However, it’s written with such finesse by Dan Abnett that it sucks you back into the story immediatley.
Here a bit of an intermission occurs of sorts as we break to check in on some other members and areas throughout town. Teela no longer a sorcerous, is seen teaching the young kids of Eternia, but also still feels sadness over all she has lost. She-Ra has made the decision to walk these streets alone and pursue new quests in Earthia. This all happens while we come back to Adam instructing the people to care for the refugees that keep flowing in as a result of the war torn area since they have ample supplies from Moss Man’s sacrifice...Thanks again, Moss Man!
Next we get to the most important theme of the issue when we find out that Adam wants to share the Power of Grayskull with all the people of Eternia. Not only to allow the land to flourish again but to inspire those to use the power as their own since it was never meant to be contained by one individual in the first place. I love this scene and idea here mostly because earlier in the series there were flash forwards to the future where we find that the power of Grayskull ultimately corrupts Adam to the point he never returns from being He-Man! Who wants He-Man to become his own eventual downfall?!? The answer...nobody! Well, maybe guys like Jim who is just a miserable old man! (Jim's Note: Actually, that does sound cool!) It’s also top notch because it shows our hero has learned and grown on his journey with the others to the point he can now trust the people he looks over to help him whether evil ever comes back again or not.
Speaking of which, someone should have asked for an ice cream instead of evil, because before we wrap things up we peek in at Evil Lynn, being all evil and hot as usual, using some of her mumbo jumbo to bring someone back from the dead with some blood magic. It's pretty easy to figure out that all of this just isn’t on the up and up. Remember, she is so hot...but ultimately Evil! So Hot! I wonder who she is bringing back? Actually, we should all get three guesses and the first two don't count.
Now you’re probably saying, "I thought this was an epilogue?" Yes it is and unfortunately, this is where we sadly start winding things down. We get a brief glimpse of Adam and Teela kissing on their wedding day and then echoes are heard...like something is being made in the fire pits of Grayskull. What can that be?!? We are then given a beautiful monologue from He-Man who’s slaving away at something. What could it be?!? (Jim's Note: I even want to know now!) The camera zooms in close as we see all that noise was from the makings of a new sword!
I was thrown off a bit here since He-Man was talking to someone with his backed turned to the reader. I started to worry that maybe all of the recent events had gotten to our hero, but then he says, “I’ve been expecting you. Are you ready?" …. I anxiously turned the page to see He-Man was really talking to me and finishes with the line, “You Have the Power!” Then, he handed ME the new sword! Me and only Me!!
Holy crap! Six year old me just shit his pants because He-Man just broke the fourth wall and gave me a Power Sword like I always wanted. I think we also just became best friends! He hasn't called me to hang out yet, so I'll just sit here by the phone and wait until he does.
Well needless to say I loved this issue. This isn’t an issue to just jump in to check out what's been happening in Eternia, it is the epilogue of a long running story that was just really fantastic from start to finish. Even if you’re not a He-Man fan there was a lot of fantasy, sci-fi and time traveling story elements to sink your teeth deep into...Really, there is a little something for everyone to enjoy. The creative team of Dan Abnett and Pop Mhan have done almost the entire run together which brought a great consistency to the work not seen often in modern day comics and I want you (and them) to know how much I really appreciated that.
Bits and Pieces:
Ultimately, our heroes prevailed and became better on their journey along the way. The art was mind blowing especially the splash pages throughout this issue. Seriously, they are truly poster worthy and I want them on my bedroom wall right now! Hey Pop, can you tell my girlfriend to let me do that? This story reached its end in such an organic and earned way that I have to give kudos to the entire team. Thank you for putting out such a great throwback to mine and many other's childhoods. It was greatly appreciated. Hey Eric, if you are reading...my score is just a gut feeling I have. Trust the Gut!