Okay, so I’m just another bandwagon-jumper, right? Just another ’80s geek getting my panties in a twist over a film that’s yet to start production? Well, yeah… but, hey, I’ve seen this kind of stuff get screwed up by the idiots in Hollywood enough to know there’s probably a lot of truth behind the rumor.
Oh, you’re the one that didn’t hear about this yet?
Yeah… once again, the suits have somehow managed to convince the creators that films can only work if set on planet Earth. Forget that the fantasy worlds of Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings – two of the most successful franchises in motion picture history – have zero or little reference to our fair planet whatsoever. Forget that good storytelling is born of great characters, not where they live. Forget all that… because some bright spark knows better. Masters of the Universe is set to take place on Earth once again.
Following the huge success of this year’s Transformers, the floodgates have opened – as predicted – for a variety of ’80s toy- and cartoon-inspired films to appear over the coming years. G.I. Joe, Voltron and now Masters of the Universe are on the drawing board. And, as always, it seems the financial success of one film has led to a copycat mentality. In this case, it’s the idea that any film in this “genre” must follow the same Earth-based narrative – presumably so that we, as an audience, may be babied into relating to a central, wide-eyed human observer.
Is it not enough that – for all its success at the box office – Transformers was largely criticised for its weak plot? Is it not enough that the first cinematic outing of He-Man was a massive embarrassment? Masters of the Universe could well be a beautiful amalgamation of the alien worlds of Star Wars and Tolkien’s Middle Earth – a film to take the recent run of fantasy cinema in a new and unusual direction. It’s just going to take a little creativity and a mind open to the potentially extraordinary world of Eternia.
But an Eternia-on-Earth? Please. If you’re going to crap on the existing fanbase this badly, why not just go and create an unrelated film in the first place. Either way, you’ll be finding a new audience.