Eternity War is Here! He-Man’s run at DC Comics has changed yet again. And honestly it’s for the best! Continuing from the events of the Blood of Grayskull, we are set back to the present with Hordak being reborn! This will be a slightly SPOILER FILLED Review!
This is a “breast” of fresh air, compared to The Lion King esque final issue we got last month. Eternity War #1 brings us back to the Horde’s Occupation of Eternia, and now we see that with the Blood of Grayskull’s heir, Hordak will be reborn! I had ZERO negative thoughts when they announced this new changeover for the series. If you look at the DC Comics history with MOTU there have been several name changes over the years. There was just Masters of the Universe, which was a 8 issue mini series from June of 2012. Then we had the 6 issue mini series He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, then in 2013 we had the same name of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe for the main ongoing. Finally that ongoing transformed with THE POWER OF GRAYSKULL, to become He-Man: The Eternity War. At the start of the 2012 6 issue mini at least, we have been going on a strong and continuous continuity, and I like that. So let us get to my thoughts on Abnett’s Eternity War writing, and then Mhan’s Eternity War Art!
This was an amazing first issue. If you look at it as a continuation between Issue 18 of the ongoing, and this new ongoing. Abnett really niled all the dialogue here, and it’s so nice to have a real Hordak again. This issue is mainly exposition to get the new readers caught up. I honestly do not think that’s a bad thing. It was great seeing all the Horde members we know and love. As far as the writing goes, I love the way Abnett writes Man At Arms. I love the setup here of the History of Grayskull, with the two gems as the eyes of the Castle! They are truly setting up a great story of science fiction and fantasy rolled into one. My only real complaint about the writing is Teela…. now don’t get me wrong, she has been the BEST Teela I’ve ever had the chance of seeing, but her as The Goddess is just weird. She talks like a prophet 90% of this issue, then when MAA finally breaks through to see his daughter, they have a chat and at the end of it she says, “Yes Daddy.” I guess this is to make us the readers realize that under that green skin and armor she really is still daddy’s little girl. However it was just strange to me. So happy to see He-Man and She-Ra side by side, and She-Ra helps them figure out the mystery of the gem eye stones.
With the Horde Occupying Eternia it’s gonna be hard to have He-Man, She-Ra, and the rest of the Masters take the planet back. But that is the whole point of this new series. To show us the struggle and the WAR! of who has control of Eternia!!!! ^See that image above this text? I can’t wait to read what Abnett writes for the Horde Elite characters!!!! When all is said and done, this issue renewed my faith in Dan Abnett’s ability to write these characters. For me Abnett’s writing has been hit or miss in the past, but now I’m so ready to read more of this story.
Pop Mhan is back, and DAMN his art is the best. Next to Michael S. O’Hare’s cover for issue #9 of the 2013 ongoing…. Mhan is my favorite MOTU artist right now. With very clean lines, and great character drawings Mhan brings out some of the best MOTU designs. I’m still not too keen on the upgraded Power Swords look, but I’ve gotten used to He-Man’s armor. She-Ra looks great, although I can’t wait to see more of her, there were only a few glancing shots of her in this first issue.
If you look at the image above here^ Mhan draws Teela as the Goddess well, but he gives her a very “adult” body, and a very child like face. It’s kinda unsettling to me in this page only. The reason for my unsettling feeling is that in Abnett’s writing he crafts Teela’s dialogue to be all wise and all that. Yet as I mentioned earlier both in the art and dialogue I don’t think either Abnett or Mhan can really nail Teela’s character as the Goddess. Other than that Mhan’s art and inks are very well done. Mark Roberts on the colors is fantastic as well.
Eternity War #1 is a great pick up from He-Man and the MOTU #18… completely ignoring the “back to the past” issue #19. Abnett overall is a damn good storyteller for this series. I’m intrigued to see where he takes it. So thankful that Mhan is on the art, and as I said Roberts’s colors really pop. I mean just look at Snake Mountain below… that is so freakin awesome!
Final Score -
Masterful introduction, and brings everything back to one!
He-Man: The Eternity War's first issue really is a setup for any new readers. It does well with bringing in anyone who hasn't read the DC Comics continuity to this point. I'm very excited for the next issue!