Kevin Smith has spent the best part of a month building up his "love letter" to fans of 80s cartoon He-Man that is his new Netflix series, Master of the Universe: Revelation. The reaction the series has received isn't probably what Smith hoped for, with many fans of the original series more than a little disgruntled with his "continuation" of the classic franchise. Smith is a self-professed super-fan of the cartoon, making it easy to see why Netflix wanted him to bring the revival to screens and hard to understand how it has all apparently gone wrong with his core audience. Smith recently spoke about why he took on the challenge and the target audience he aimed to please with his new vision.
According to Kevin Smith, his main focus was on doing the things that the original series couldn't do, such has more mature characters and storyline, real consequences and the apparent death of He-Man himself. "I know what a fan base reacts like when they don't get the thing they grew up watching. You think I'm gonna be the fall guy for that? If I'm involved in a thing, it's going to be true to what it is. It's gonna be true to the franchise," Smith stressed.
When he was offered the chance to direct the series, Smith was pitched the idea by Ted Biaselli, director of original series at Netflix, and the prospect of what they wanted was enough to have Smith instantly interested. According to Smith, the pitch was to take away the elements of the original series that made it a "safe place" where no-one died and all sense of peril was pretty much non-existent. Smith was tasked with creating a more adult version of He-Man and The Masters Of The Universe, in which fans of the franchise could worry over the characters. As it turned out, they seemingly only worried over the lack of He-Man.
Smith took the bold move of taking both He-Man and Skeletor out of the series in the opening episode, leaving the rest of the first part of season one to be led by Teela. This in itself proved problematic for Smith's series, as many saw Teela's character has unsympathetic, abrasive and "acting like a spoilt child" for most of the series so far. With that said, Smith is ploughing on ahead with the new episodes, and was happy to give an update to fans who have been enjoying the revival.
Smith said, "Thank you! @bearmccreary just recorded the live orchestra score for episode 10 and we finished the sound mix on Ep 8. So @MastersOfficial Revelation Part 2 is officially picture-locked, nearly wrapped, and ready to go! (And SPOILERS!!! Both He-Man vs SkeleGod fights are brutal.)"
Even with some hardcore fans tearing the series down with very little chance of retribution no matter what coming in the second part of the season, there has been a growing amount of praise for the show. Smith has managed to keep most of the characters in line with their original iterations, and he has even managed to tie in easter eggs and elements of the Dolph Lundgren movie, which previously had very little to link it to the cartoon. With work on the second half of the season clearly moving at pace, it seems likely that we won't have to wait too long to see how the rest of the story pans out.