The left has claimed yet another victim in its ongoing crusade to destroy your childhood: “He-Man.”
Netflix released a reboot July 23 of the popular 1980s cartoon series “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.” The reboot, titled “Masters of the Universe: Revelation,” follows in the footsteps of other awful reboots , such as the 2016 “Ghostbusters” remake.
However, when fans turned on “Masters of the Universe: Revelation” expecting to see fun, ’80s-inspired action and adventure, they were sorely disappointed. The show is a mess, directed and produced by woke idealogues who would rather push a political message than write a decent story.
For starters, despite being a reboot of the “He-Man” series, He-Man isn’t even the main character. In Episode 1 of the rebooted series, He-Man dies. This isn’t a fake-out or a trick: He’s really dead.
The focus then shifts from He-Man to his friend, Teela, a side character from the original show who is unrecognizable in her modern iteration. In this version she’s a grotesque caricature of an “independent woman” with a chip on her shoulder against He-Man’s alter-ego, Prince Adam.
In a larger sense, Teela’s disgust with Adam and shift from the background to the fore is a proxy for disgust of men in general as well as for the original stories these characters appeared in. This is being played out in many reboots in modern pop culture.
There’s an ongoing phenomenon of leftists dredging up old, beloved cultural properties to use as a vessel for twisted and radical politics. “Masters of the Universe: Revelation” is not unique in this, it’s simply the most recent example of it.
Take the 2016 “Ghostbusters” remake. Its main, and, one might argue, only, selling point was it was a remake of a popular ’80s franchise where all the main characters were replaced by women. The film almost exclusively advertised itself on this premise, and mainstream media outlets were more than willing to push the narrative that this was some amazing and revolutionary achievement.
When the movie started receiving pushback from fans, the response was to claim the fans were sexists. The New York Times ran the infamous headline “Our ‘Ghostbusters’ Review: Girls Rule. Women Are Funny. Get Over It,” implying any criticism of the film was based on the gender of the cast, rather than any legitimate gripe with the movie.
Similarly, The Washington Post flat out said, “People Hate the ‘Ghostbusters’ Trailer, and Yes, It’s Because It Stars Women.”
So too with the new “He-Man.” Fans weren’t angry that Teela, a woman, was the star of the show. They were angry that a show advertised as a continuation of the classic “He-Man” series didn’t have He-Man in it. They were angry that when they criticized the show, the response, as with Ghostbusters, was to call them “toxic” and to tell them to “grow up.”
But there is more to this coordinated campaign by the left to destroy cherished childhood shows and movies than simply trying to ruin things for everyone. One of the ways Marxists infect society is through destruction of the past to replace it with a new Marxist future. Mao Zedong did this to great effect during the Chinese Communist Revolution.
For many people, franchises like “He-Man” and “Ghostbusters” were a quintessential part of their childhood. The amount of nostalgia and positive feelings connected to these old franchises cannot be overstated. The left recognizes the power contained in nostalgia, and wants to use it for its own ends. But the very reason these shows were so popular and loved is because they weren’t woke garbage.
So instead of destroying the past as they might do with a statue of George Washington, leftists have decided to wield their power over culture and co-opt “problematic” franchises from the past. “Look,” they say, “He-Man was sexist, but we fixed him. Now a woman is in the lead role! If you prefer the old version, you must be a bigot!”
As the late Andrew Breitbart used to say, “politics is downstream of culture,” and this puppeteering of old cultural properties to push the woke narrative will have consequences down the line.
With new shows and movies dominated by the left, and old shows and movies being dredged up to serve radical ends, that upstream culture will fester and ooze its way downstream for radical American politics.
There is no simple solution to this problem. The left currently has a stranglehold on culture, and will continue to corrupt treasured franchises from our childhoods. Perhaps then, “He-Man” should serve as a wake-up call. Conservatives cannot lose focus on cultural issues, or we are done as a political philosophy.
We can still win the culture war. To borrow a classic turn of phrase, “We have the power!”
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