Skeletor


Also found in: Wikipedia.
Enlarge picture
He-Man's arch foe, Skeletor, from Masters of the Universe.

Skeletor

(pop culture)
Although he never did capture the power of Castle Grayskull and thus control the planet of Eternia and beyond, the villainous Skeletor nevertheless conquered the hearts and imaginations of children of the 1980s. With his bony yellow skeletal face and muscular blue-skinned body, Skeletor was frightening enough, but with added darkly magical powers, an energy-blasting Havoc Staff, and a loyal coterie of villainous followers, Skeletor caused much havoc for Eternia and its main defender, He-Man. In late 1981, Mattel Toys introduced a line of 5-inch action figures under the umbrella name Masters of the Universe. The two stars of the line were Nordic blond-haired barbarian He-Man and the blue-skinned Skeletor. Although mini-comic books were included with the toys, they revealed little about the characters, other than establishing that Skeletor was a tough supervillain for He-Man to defeat. In 1982, the ultra-popular toy line was developed for a syndicated animated series called He- Man and the Masters of the Universe from Filmation, and Skeletor and his minions were more fleshed out. Cruel and fearsome, Skeletor schemed constantly to overtake Castle Grayskull, determined to use its powers to control the universe. His mostly incompetent henchmen included the beauteousbut- cold Evil-Lyn, the orange-furred Beast Man, the amphibious Mer- Man, the mechanical Trap Jaw, and a seemingly endless supply of Robot Knights. Atop his Bone Throne in his lair on Snake Mountain, Skeletor would often caress his pet purple panther, Panthor. Skeletor exhibited many magical powers over the two-season highly rated 130-episode run of He- Man and the Masters of the Universe, and also showed extra strength and a popularity that found him regularly crossing over into the He-Man spinoff, She-Ra, Princess of Power (1985). His highpitched voice was provided by Alan Oppenheimer, who tossed off insults toward his minions as often as he threatened the heroes. Later, versatile actor Frank Langella donned a prosthetic makeup application to become Skeletor, battling Dolph Lundgren as He-Man in director Gary Goddard's live-action movie Masters of the Universe (1987), a modest box-office success. Though the toy line faded in popularity, Skeletor returned in a revival of the toys (1989) and cartoon show, The New Adventures of He-Man (1990). Here, Skeletor and He-Man were transported to Primus, where Skeletor made a pact with Flogg, the leader of the Evil Mutants of Denebria and the Moon Nordor, and the clash of good and evil was underway again. Skeletor somehow grew eyeballs to go along with a new costume, and a personality that was more crazily comical than dangerous. In 2002 a new He-Man and the Masters of the Universe animated series and toy line debuted, this time based on the original concept, but updated. Now, Skeletor was an evil alchemist named Keldor whose evil magic transformed him into Skeletor. Commanding his evil forces, Skeletor's battles against He-Man and the forces of good to capture the secret of Castle Grayskull raged anew. In 2005, when BCI Eclipse launched an extensive new DVD line for the classic He-Man and the Masters of the Universe cartoon series, the battle lines between Skeletor and He-Man were drawn again, this time for children-of-the-1980s-grown-into- parents to share with their own children. Skeletor's rallying cry of “I'll get you, He-Man!” lives on.