Historically, Star Trek and Star Wars fans have clashed over a variety of matters ranging from which franchise is better to whether or not the Starship Enterprise could hold its own against a Star Destroyer. We never thought we’d see anything bring these two groups together, but that’s exactly what happened recently in the He-Man show Masters of the Universe: Revolution. Audiences watching the show were thrilled to hear Star Wars legend Mark Hamill and Star Trek icon William Shatner providing voices for two different versions of Skeletor, everyone’s favorite 80’s bad guy.
Mark Hamill As Jok–Um, We Mean Skeletor
In this He-Man sequel series, Hamill reprises his role as the voice of Skeletor, an evil villain who’s bad to the bone in the most literal way. For the most part, he does a great job bringing this fan-favorite bad guy to life, though his performance falls short of original Skeletor voice actor Alan Oppenheimer. To fully enjoy the performance, you’re going to have to actively ignore how similar Hamill’s Skeletor is to his Joker.
Skeletor = Keldor
In Masters of the Universe: Revolution, Skeletor is working for fellow bad guy Hordak and gains He-Man’s trust by posing as Keldor, the warrior’s long-lost uncle and the rightful king of Eternia. The plan works and the disguised Skeletor secures the crown, but that’s when Hordak drops the bombshell revelation that this identity isn’t a fabrication: Skeletor really was Keldor once upon a time and had forgotten who he really was. In Keldor’s form, Skeletor is not voiced by Mark Hamill but instead by Captain Kirk actor William Shatner.
Shatner’s More Iconic Character Is Referenced
Shatner’s performance is great, giving the character enough warmth and humanity to make his successful ruse against He-Man that much more plausible. Unlike Hamill, Shatner doesn’t make any real attempt to disguise his famous voice, but that actually works because having a secret bad guy sound like Captain Kirk makes him instantly seem more trustworthy. Showrunner and writer Kevin Smith leaned into this, giving Keldor a line that Kirk once hurled at the genetically augmented Khan: “I’m laughing at the superior intellect.”
The Origins Of Keldor
In case you are wondering, Skeletor secretly being He-Man’s uncle is not an original idea created by the writers of Masters of the Universe: Revolution. One of the last minicomics made for the original line of action figures strongly hinted that Skeletor could be the long-lost brother of He-Man’s father, King Randor. Later, the 2002 reboot He-Man and the Masters of the Universe made this idea canon, revealing Keldor as Randor’s brother, a man disfigured by acid after an unsuccessful attack on the king.
After getting disfigured, Keldor’s life is saved by Hordak, but this salvation comes at the cost of Skeletor becoming a servant to the other villain. Later lore provided by the Masters of the Universe Classic figures clarified that Keldor had blue skin because he was Randor’s half-brother, with his mother being a member of the Gar race. Those toys also tried to reconcile old lore and new lore by having Hordak explicitly drive Keldor insane when transforming him into Skeletor, which conveniently explains why the bony bad guy had no idea he was He-Man’s uncle in the original show.
The Battle Continues
No matter how strong He-Man is, we doubt his latest series is enough to permanently end the fighting between Star Trek and Star Wars fans. But Masters of the Universe: Revolution is an awesome series that fans of all stripes can enjoy, and having one of the biggest names from each sci-fi franchise voice the same character teaches us the same kind of life lesson that He-Man would teach at the end of the original show. Here’s the lesson: like Keldor and Skeletor, fans bitterly fighting over something as silly as which franchise is better are ultimately nothing more than two sides of the same coin.