The Power of... Point Dread!
Plot: Skeletor gets control over the Talon Fighter and Point Dread with a mystical crystal. The attack on the palace begins: Skeletor himself flies the Talon Fighter, Beast Man operates the blasters of Point Dread and Tri-Klops leads the ground army. He-Man sees they can't win this fight, so he takes the Wind Raider to attack Skeletor directly. Zoar rushes to help but is shut down by Skeletor. The Talon Fighter is obviously superior to the Wind Raider, so He-Man can only win with a trick: he dives towards Point Dread and pulls up in the very last moment. The Talon fighter isn't as maneuverable as the Wind Raider and it crashes. The attack is over, Point Dread and the Talon Fighter reappear on top of Castle Grayskull and Skeletor has no chance reaching it again because his crystal has been destroyed.
Comments: Point Dread and the Talon Fighter are really great! Too bad that they were never used again in any story after this one...
The Ordeal of Man-E-Faces
Plot: Skeletor forces the famous actor Man-E-Faces to drink a magical potion which turns him into a monster under Skeletor's control. But Skeletor changes him back to human again as a disguise. When Man-E-Faces acts in front of the royal court, Skeletor shows up, turns him into a monster and lets him capture Teela. He wants to sacrifice her to a demon. The Sorceress and He-Man show up. She turns Man-E-Faces back to human and Teela is free. He-Man fights back the demon. Skeletor changes the actor back to the monster, the Sorceress back to human and so on. Suddenly Man-E-Faces explodes under the huge magical load upon him. Skeletor disappears. Man-E-Faces has turned into a 'neutral' robot, neither good nor evil. The Sorceress changes him back into his 'good' human form, but she knows the monster and the robot are now part of his personality and can be activated by Skeletor again, everytime.
Comments: Wow! I love 'spawned' characters! A very gripping story.
It's also interesting from the historical point of view. Here, Teela and the Sorceress are two different persons. But the Sorceress still has her classic snake outfit. And Adam also isn't mentioned...
He-Man Meets Ram-Man
Plot: Ram-Man stops He-Man who is on his way to a mission in the Attack Track. Despite the heroes claims that he just wants to pass peacefully, he thinks He-Man is his enemy and attacks by ramming the Attack Track. But he doesn't stand a chance against He-Man and is knocked out. Skeletor has seen it all and he wants to take advantage of the situation. He approaches Ram-Man, tells him He-Man is evil and that he needs Ram-Man's help to defeat He-Man who lives in Castle Grayskull. Ram-Man should break the gate open. The Sorceress senses the danger and she calls He-Man who has just saved a village from a huge four-armed monster. When he arrives at Castle Grayskull, Ram-Man still hasn't succeeded in breaching the gates. Now he also understands that Skeletor is in fact the evil one, but he can't stop ramming the castle because he's under Skeletor's magical control. Skeletor and Beast Man manage to knock He-Man unconcious. But for that, Skeletor had to use magic which he needed to control Ram-Man who is now free! He rams Skeletor (no, not what you think ;) who was just about to kill He-Man. Now it's two against two and the evil guys disappear in a cloud. He-Man and Ram-Man are now 'friends'.
Comments: Ram-Man - this name says it all, doesn't it? The possible implications are countless! Work it out for yourself... But there's one big question: why does Ram-Man trust a living skeleton and his beasty servant just one moment after he attacked a hero-like guy who just wanted to pass?
The Magic Stealer
Plot: Skeletor's at it again! This time, he has discovered a powerful ancient machine on the North Pole. This machine absorbs all magic of Eternia and concentrates it on the person who has activated the machine. The effect is fatal: the court magician crumbles to the ground, even the Sorceress can only give out a last weak warning to He-Man, and Castle Graskull can't resist either. He-Man takes the Attack Track on his mission to the pole. He is accompanied by Zoar. On their way, they meet Procrustus, a god who lives within the planet's centre. He wants to end the threat himself, put He-Man forces him to stay because otherwise the world would fall apart. As they come nearer to the pole, horrible spirits attack the heros. He-Man can hardly stand the horror, but the Attack Track (being a machine) drives on. Finally, He-Man reaches the machine and approaches Skeletor. The Lord of Destruction himself is invincible because by now, he controls all of Eternia's magic. But He-Man rips the evil machine apart and all the power flows back to its origins. The horror has ended.
Comments: This is how the series could and should have been! A violent, dark and doomed world, close to utter destruction. I love those drawings of the evil spirits - this is not a kid's series anymore! The best minicomic ever! Ironically, this masterpiece was certainly also one of the main reasons Mattel took away DC's license for these comics because they wanted to have small children as their audience...
The Tale of Teela!
Plot: Once every twenty years, Point Dread mysteriously appears - but only for a short time. Last time, Skeletor used its magical power to drain part of the Sorceress' power to create a clone of her - obeying to his command. Man-at-Arms came to rescue the Sorceress, but the process was already finished and the result was a baby: Teela. Because the Sorceress couldn't take care of her, Man-at-Arms 'adopted' the baby. So Teela grew up without knowing her origin. Now Point Dread has appeared again. Skeletor magically lures Teela out of the palace and his minions catch her. In Point Dread, he wants to complete what Man-at-Arms had interrupted last time. Meanwhile, the heroes notice Teela's absence. He-Man, Ram-Man and Stratos set out to search her. They find Point Dread, but are engaged in combat with Tri-Klops, Trap-Jaw and Mer-Man. That gives Skeletor enough time to escape with the Talon Fighter, taking the now submissive Teela with him. His goal is Castle Grayskull. With Teela being with him, the castle's magic doesn't prevent him from entering. The Sorceress and Man-at-Arms try though. Duncan doesn't stand a chance against Skeletor, but the Sorceress magically merges with her clone again. In possession of her full energy again and can easily defeat the evil lord. Since Teela has developed her own life over time, she lets her split from herself again though. The Talon Fighter is transfered on top of Castle Grayskull.
Comments: Forget what you saw in the cartoon - it's all a big conspiracy! The government wants you to think the cartoon version is the full truth, but they've just made it up to prevent you from learning what could be their end. But fortunately, some brave soul wrote the truth down in this comic - so read it!
Thanks to Ravenscribe for the scan!
The Menace of Trap-Jaw
Plot: Skeletor opens a portal to another world. His plan is to open a portal back to Eternia there, but to re-appear within Castle Grayskull. But on this other world, he is knocked back through the first portal by a criminal who is chased: Trap-Jaw. Trap-Jaw however, stumbles through the second portal and indeed gets into Castle Grayskull. Now he possesses its mystical powers. Neither Teela nor Man-at-Arms can beat him. Even Skeletor and He-Man are no match for his new powers! Skeletor and He-Man see only one way: they merge their halves of the Power Sword and but Trap-Jaw's link to the castle. Skeletor takes the unconcious criminal with him as his new lackey.
Comments: This is possibly the weakest issue of the second series. The artwork is a bit strange (Trap-Jaw doesn't look like the toy at all!). And the only interesting thing about the story is Skeletor and He-Man being forced to work together. But showing the Power of Grayskull as a kind of rope? Oh well... on the whole, this comic is still a lot better than most from the other series'.
The Terror of Tri-Klops
Plot: Skeletor hires the mercenary Tri-Klops to kill He-Man. As 'payment', he promises him that they'll rule Eternia together afterwards. He-Man, Teela, Ram-Man and Battle Cat enjoy the sun and the silence. But Skeletor magically lures Battle Cat away from the others and Tri-Klops knocks it out in a cave. The same thing happens to Ram-Man. He-Man and Teela are just about to get 'more intimate' with each other when Tri-Klops attacks them. Teela is immediately struck down. He-Man is blinded by a flash of light from Tri-Klops' eye. But he recovers and beats the mercenary up. Skeletor wants to punish Tri-Klops for losing the fight, but he notices with his 'far vision' and disappears mysteriously.
Comments: I just love this one! Tri-Klops is characterized as a real threat and even more important independent and cunning! After reading this, you won't be able to watch the cartoon anymore - it just hurts to see what they made of such a great warrior there. His 'morals' are also quite interesting: he doesn't just kill everybody who stands in his way, but only his main target. And at the beginning, he can be seen fighting demons - so he's not really evil at all! But why couldn't Tri-Klops wait until He-Man and Teela had put their weapons and clothes aside - both he and the reader would have profited from this ;)