Masters of the Universe 40th Anniversary Panel Comic-Con 2022

He-Man and the Masters of the Universe is turning 40 years old this year – and what better place to celebrate than at San Diego Comic-Con 2022? At 40, He-Man and The Masters of the Universe have been part of a sprawling franchise of TV shows, comics, toys, film, anime and more. and no other person could wrangle all that into one panel except for Kevin Smith, one of the current architects of Netflix's Master of the Universe: Revelations series! 

Smith opened the panel with some jokes about all the kids too young to know the beginnings of He-Man, and how it is close to his heart because it gave a chubby kid from Jersey the belief that he could be more. 

The panelists included Mattel Entertainment's Rob David, Mattel Toys' Derek Handy, Dan "Pixel" Eardley, actress/voice actress Tiffany Smith, actor/voice actor Stephen Root (Barry), and the legend himself: the live-action He-Man, Dolph Lundgren!

Eardley described his definitive book on the toys of Masters of the Universe as a passion project that he enjoyed the most because it let him interact with so many fans. A picture of Eardley as a boy led to an emotional story of how his mom inspired the book by always hunting down He-Man toys for him. 

Handy described designing a new generation of He-Man and MotU toys, and how inspiring the past was. He also previewed some new toys that highlight the different decades of He-Man series – as well as a Castle Grayskull toy that will be the first with lights, sound, and a working drawbridge. There was also an Eternia set revealed – it's massive and has a working monorail car! 

Rob David talked about keep the core joy of MotU alive in this new era of the franchise, which is, first and foremost, the idea that there is hidden power within all of us to unlock. Hey teased Season 3 of He-Man and the Master of the Universe coming – while also debuting a trailer! 

The new trailer showed a much bigger scale of battle, as Prince Adam/He-Man led led the Masters of the Universe against Skeletor, with Havoc being the danger hanging overhead. 

After some colorful commentary from Kevin Smith about Internet trolls, author Greg Mone talked about writing a He-Man book, and getting to fully embody the mentality and spirit of a kid getting to inhabit an all-powerful adult warrior. There was also the first look at Mone's humorous satire "I, Skeletor" which will be Skeletor's biography, from his own first-person perspective. 

Dolph Lundgren did an epic recall of what it was like being cast as He-Man in the 1980s live-action film. Lundgren was announced as He-Man at Radio City Music Hall, with a room full of young kids waving toy swords, screaming "I have the power!" He thought it might be the end of his career; instead, he's still here on stage talking He-Man as a viable franchise three decades later... so it worked out. 

Smith asked Lundgren about wearing nothing but briefs and shooting in the cold of night, which Lundgren confirmed as facts. Kevin Smith said it's taken decades, but He-Man is finally talking about his junk. 

Tiffany Smith was a true He-Man geek as a kid, which made her a perfect shepherd character for the Master of the Universe: Revelations Netflix series. She was overjoyed at the chance – and still is. 

Stephen Root has been everywhere as Kevin Smith confirmed – from Coen Brothers movies (5) to HBO's current hit show Barry, to his iconic role as "Milton" in Office Space. So why Cringer/Battle Cat in Motu? Root says he treated like any of his great character acting jobs: he did the research. Root and Smith talked about approaching a new version of the Cringer/Battle Cat voice: instead of changing it with the character transformation, Root simply added self-esteem and confidence to Cringer – basically him embracing his inner power. 

Kevin Smith got to answer some questions and defend his Master of the Universe: Revelations choice not to feature He-Man in every episode. Thanks to the Internet backlash, He-Man will be in every bit of Masters of the Universe: Revolutions. Smith teased Hordack and some other iconic franchise characters soon making their debut. 

BIG SURPRISE: Star Trek icon William Shatner came on stage to announce HE is joining Master of the Universe: Revolutions! 

There is NO WORD on who Shatner is playing – but Smith told a hilarious story about how he tried to direct the iconic actor – and was old he did not yet have the "honor" of doing so, until Bill found his process! 

The panel ended with Shatner raising the He-Man sword and saying the oath – then passing to Dolph Lundgren so he could do the same!