Kevin Smith Wants Netflix's Masters Of The Universe: Revelation To Be The MCU For He-Man Fans
Masters of the Universe: Revelation debuts July 23 on Netflix and is a sequel to the original animated series.
On July 23, the first season of Masters of the Universe: Revelation will debut on Netflix. The series is one of a number of He-Man-centric projects in the works, with director Kevin Smith serving as showrunner. Now, through this show, he's speaking directly to fans of the original animated series with a tale tailored to them.
Revelation is a direct sequel to the original Masters of the Universe, featuring all of the characters you remember playing with--voiced by the likes of Sarah Michelle Gellar, Mark Hamill, Lena Headey, Chris Wood, and Tiffany Smith. Now, though, the franchise has a bit more of an adult tone to it, where the violence and stakes feel a bit scarier than when you were a kid.
This new take on the iconic franchise all started in a meeting between Smith and Mattel vice president of creative content Rob David. "He's like, 'We want to do a show that honors the original show and just kind of continues the storyline. This show is for all the people who grew up watching the original Masters of the Universe,'" Smith told GameSpot.
Knowing he would be making a show that spoke directly to the He-Man fandom, he quickly came up with an idea for the series--which he called Masters of the Universe: The End of the Universe until he was told that particular name was "a little too dire"--and sat down to meet with Netflix. It was at that meeting that he appealed to Netflix's director of original programming--and Masters of the Universe superfan--Ted Bieseli.
"I was like, 'Look, I just want to do for this what Marvel does for me,'" Smith remembered of the meeting. "'I go to see a Marvel movie, I get my childhood served back to me in a new and interesting way that I could sit down and explain to my kid or my wife what's going on because I know this s*** insanely well.'"
While Bieseli liked Smith's idea, he had one stipulation. "He was like, 'Look, there's going to be a temptation to make fun of this stuff--to make jokes at its expense. Please just don't do that,'" Smith remembered. "He's going, 'Just treat this [intellectual property] like Shakespeare. There's a rich, deep bench of characters as deep as the bench of Marvel characters and DC characters and we don't make fun of those characters. I'm not saying it can't be funny, but don't mock it.'"
While, on the surface, comparing He-Man to Shakespeare sounds strange, Smith was inspired by it. "Him saying treat it like Shakespeare formed the basis for what it became, where it was like, 'Oh my God, we get to write lofty [faux Shakespeare] dialogue for these characters. I can't write dialogue like this for Jay and Silent Bob. They don't get to say s*** like this,'" he said. "For me, it was dream come true stuff--to write huge superhero dialogue and have it be heard. I've written superhero dialogue for like the comic books, but you don't generally get to hear it performed."
You'll be able to hear it performed when the first season of Masters of the Universe, a batch of five half-hour episodes, hit Netflix on July 23.