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He-Man, and the German-only radio cassettes


This isn't strictly about TV, but we don't have a subforum for radio cassettes. Also, He-Man is, for me, mainly a TV thing, so I think this forum fits well enough. If a mod things it's the wrong subforum, feel free to move the thread.

I'm sure everyone here knows He-Man. What probably no one knows is, that there were radio cassettes (that's the right word, right? This things were voices were recorded and could be put into a radio to play them) which had stories of He-Man, which were created for the German-speaking market. As far as I know, they were never translated into another language. They are also very old, I guess around 30 years (the franchise is pretty old too, after all). I don't have the cassettes anymore, but they are all uploaded on Youtube. If anyone wants to look for them, they are uploaded in the channel "Hugo Bartwisch", but considering that they are German, that's probably not particularly useful news for you guys.

But fear not, as I will tell you what happens in these fantastic tales. Well, I will do one episode, and if there is interest, I will do more. So, let's start with


Source (according to the Website, copies for private use are allowed)​

Episode 2: Das Todestor (The Door of Death)

Considering that this series is nearly completely episodic, it doesn't matter where I start. Normally, I would still do episode 1 first, but episode 2 is more interesting, because it has new, weird lore.

We start with Man-at-Arms and Orko, who try out a new weapon in the Sands of Time, a huge desert, which was home to a race of giants, long ago. But these giants are gone now, and they only left ruins.

The new weapon is a new kind of super-phaser, which can vaporize stone, but Man-at-Arms isn't satisfied. He needs a new battery, but forgot it back home. Thankfully, Orko can teleport, and gets it for him.

But then! Some evil voice appears, and when Orko comes back seconds later, they are both gone. And because the Winds of Time, which teleport people back through time, start to get stronger, Orko has to teleport back again.

Interestingly, it's Castle Grayskull, where he teleports to. At this point, much of He-Man wasn't too clearly defined, and during the first few episodes of the tapes everyone lived in Castle Grayskull. I'm not sure how that works either, I think He-Man is still the only one who can reach the Sorceress. But these are just details.

More importantly, when Orko comes back, he meets Goras, the cousin of He-Man (not Adam, the prince doesn't exist at this point in time either). But he is a one-of character, who wanted to visit the king. He is also a giant show-off, who says he is the best and strongest fighter of his country, way stronger than He-Man. But that's not just due to his strength, he is also the most intelligent person, like, everywhere.

I think it's pretty clear, that Goras is only talk. He is played like a jerk. After Orko fails with a spell, he flees and finds He-Man and Battle-Cat, and together they go back to the place where Man-at-Arms vanished.

The narrator is nice enough to explain, that He-Man travels either on the back of Battle-Cat, or with the Wind Rider (which seems to be able to go into space?). There is some talk, while they look for clues, and I have to say that I really like the voice acting.

They find a part of Man-at-Arms' belt, which was clearly cut of by a green blade. This clearly (?) indicates that Tri-Clops was here. Uh, ok, why not. You know, he is the guy with the rotating mask with the different eyes.

For no particular reason, a sandwolf appears, which is some kind of big wolf monster. It goes by in seconds, but He-Man seems to have been in danger. But there is a clue - behind the ear of the wolf is a small, poisoned arrow. Tri-Clops shot the wolf, so that he attacked He-Man.

We also learn, that Tri-Clops and Skeletor are near, watching.

For some other reason, Goras (He-Mans cousin) seems to have heard about the problems, and soon came. Orko is still totally sold on the guy, who talks big about how the sandwolf is just like a puppy. What a dork. He-Man doesn't seem too happy to see his cousin. He is very appathetic.

Wind starts again, and Goras flees again. He-Man and Orko can't go, as Battle-Cat is still looking for clues. And here it's obvious - He-Man doesn't want to dissappoint Orko, but it's clear that he knows the truth about his cousin. He-Man and Orko hide inside a cave, and watch the Wind Rider vanish.

Battle-Cats footsteps suddenly vanish, which indicates, that the winds carried him into the past. There is also a weird, black, open door, which appeared out of nowhere. Because they have nothing better to do, He-Man and Orko take a look. On their way, they find the destroyed Wind Rider of Goras, who seemed to have been taken to the past, too. But he also has recorded what happened (I guess that's a thing that every Wind Rider has?).

The video recording shows, that Goras indeed checked out the door. Also, Men-At-Arms' arms were visible, but someone seemed to hold him back. Goras looses control of the vehicle, and Goras crashes (after he whines, because he didn't stay back with his mum). We actually don't learn, what happened, except that he crashed, but I guess he survived and was also grabbed from inside the door? At least Orko now knows, that Goras is only a show-off.

Seeing Man-At-Arms's arms made He-Man and Orko, of course, go through the door. Which is watched by Skeletor, who seems to have created the door as a trap for He-Man. Orko makes some lame jokes (as he does during all these episodes), they are generally not worth mentioning.

Despite being He-Man, he still summons the power of Castle Grayskull. Orko is impressed, and special music plays, but it's completely unclear what actually happened.

Anyway, they walk through the door. Going back is immediately impossible, and they soon appear at a green, grassy place, full of very tall people and giant buildings out of glass. On a hill, there is a guy who is two times as big as He-Man, and also well trained. He screams at He-Man and Orko, because all the people that come here annoy him, and he wishes them to Hell. And then, he attacks. He-Man is too fast, and cuts the giants belt, who is so ashamed that he flees. Well, having to hold ones pants isn't very helpful, while fighting.

At least, Orko found Man-At-Arms. He and Goras have been found and tied up. An alarm sounds, as the guard seems to have talked about more annoying people from the future. Yes, it's obvious, even to our heroes, that this is the past.

The giants seem to prepare for travel, as everyone has brought their luggage to the nearby space ship. Then, we hear Battle-Cat, who tries to free Man-At-Arms and Goras. Orko is an incompetent mage, as always, and He-Man attacks. There are some battle noises, and Orko tries to free the captives. They manage to do so, but for some reason, the giants are really angry and one of them screams alarm.

I honestly have no idea why they are angry at the intruders. Our heroes run to a temple for protection, while the giants come closer. Goras whines, and He-Man, again, tells him that he can go wherever he wants, if he isn't happy. Really not a good relationship.

As expected, it was Tri-Clops who captured Man-At-Arms and threw him into the black door (that Orko suddenly calls "Door of Death").

It seems, like our heroes have just found the temple, that contains some sacred orb. Something about this scares the giants, who don't want to come in. Goras asks if they are afraid of them, at which Orko replies: "Definitely not of you."

And now, Goras finally explains that his country is actually peaceful, and that he thinks of the Eternians (or whatever the country is called, where Castle Grayskull stands) as barbarians, who they don't like to even think about.

So, this is kind of big, right? The conflict between the king of Eternia(?) and Skeletor is just a local conflict, which others don't care about. Except He-Man, I guess? Is he a mercenary? Did he visit, and due to random chance meet up with the Sorceress, who gave him the sword and told him, that he is the only hope of Eternia?

Anyway, He-Man wants to talk with the giants. One of them, seemingly a priest with a leather whip, wants to talk. He tells them, that they are not allowed to touch the "Pure Light". Doing so would be their death. No idea, if he means that touching the light is dangerous, or that all the giants would go berserk. I guess it's the latter, but choose whatever you want, the episode isn't too clear, again.

He-Man explains, that he and his friends only want to get back to their time. He mentions, that the Power of Evil sent them back in time, and the priest is curious: Who or what is the Power of Evil. As He-Man says Skeletors name, the giants make clear that they know it already.

And then, the big reveal: Skeletor was the creation of the giants. The giants came from another world, the prettiest of the whole Universe. But they destroyed their planet, until it was uninhabitable (because they polluted the air and the water, you see), and they left it for 300 years, to give it time to regenerate.

They also put all their Evil into an external...thing, and created Skeletor that way. And then, they sent him through time, into the future.

So, there you have it. Skeletor is just all the Evil from Earth. Also, the giants, uh, Earthlings didn't get much better with their treatment of the environment - remember that this place beomes a desert.

Also, they still seem like jerks, considering that they just took these harmless strangers captive.

The priest offered our heroes to come outside, and that they would be friends. But He-Man threatened to destroy the orb, if they didn't get one hour. So they debate, and decide that they demand of the priest, that he returns them to their own present. Which, uh, pretty much sounds like a win-win, right? The giants don't want our heroes here anyway, and our heroes want to get back home.

He-Man and friends left the temple, and he demands to be brought back. The priest doesn't want to help (no idea why), but when He-Man tells Man-At-Arms to smash the orb, the priest offers a battle, He-Man against the priest. If He-Man wins, they can travel to the future, otherwise everyone dies.

The battle doesn't go well for He-Man, as he takes quite a beating. Orko tries to do a spell (which, by the way, is always said in rhyme), to make the whip vanish. As always, it backfires, and the priest gets a second whip. But then, He-Man destroys the whips with his sword. Sure.

Then, the priest just accepts that he has to help them. The orb will vanish, after it is used, which seems to be a bad thing. Still no idea why, as the space ship still works. There is some Very Important Messages, about not destroying the planet a second time (Got it?). Everyone thinks of Teela, and it works. They are back in Castle Grayskull.

The group talks with Teela, and Goras acts like he alone fought against the giants, and everyone takes it in good fun.

And with that, the episode ends.


Arm Candy
I mean, we had those here. But the ones I remember were read-along cassettes that came with a book that you'd read while the cassette narrated.

And every time you were supposed to turn the page, it would make a tinkly chime sound.


Oh. For some reason, I was sure that they were a product of the German market only. Well, nevermind then.

At least I learned, that we got an inferior version. We only had the cassettes, no books.