Daily Cartoon: She-Ra and the Princesses of Power S04E05: “Protocol”

Welcome back to another episode recap! I know at this point most of you reading this have already binged the entire season, so I appreciate that you keep coming back to check out these blogs on a daily basis. It warms the cockles of my heart.

Yesterday, we saw Glimmer step out of Adora’s shadow as she embraced her new connection to the Moon Stone to single-handedly destroy a secret Horde weapon storage facility. It also forced her to make a tough decision to use She-Ra as bait in a side battle so the Horde wouldn’t be as fortified. I would have to think that this will cause some static as we go on within the Best Friends Squad since I would certainly have an issue if Gomez did that to me.

This was a big win for the Rebellion, however, as Glimmer did destroy the Horde’s massive Pulse Bot weapon so while yes, she did put her friends (Netossa and Spinnerella were also with She-Ra) in danger, you could argue that the ends justify the means.

We keep rolling along and now we’ll see the fallout and what’s next as Queen Glimmer settles into her role. Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra and the Princesses of Power S04E04: “Pulse”

Welcome to a fresh new week of episode recaps! After what felt like a long weekend, I’m excited to be picking back up with Episode 4 of the new season of She-Ra! The first three episodes thus far have been pretty damn good so I’m excited to see what’s next.

When we left off, She-Ra and Bow had liberated the village of Elberon from Horde rule, but this turned out to all be part of Catra and Hordak’s plan to insert a spy into the Rebellion: the shape-shifter Double Trouble disguised as a young, Elboranian girl named Flutterina. This is becoming a recurring theme for this season where the Rebellion is finishing off their battles thinking they’ve won, but the Horde has gone away with something in their back pocket making you think that they’re the ones who’ve actually come out on top.

If you need more than that, feel free to read the Episode 3 recap to catch up before diving into this because right now we’ve got a show to watch. Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra and the Princesses of Power S04E03 “Flutterina”

Welcome back to another exciting She-Ra episode recap! What a time to be alive!

If you recall from yesterday’s episode, Glimmer’s first mission as Queen – to retrieve Mara’s ship – was successful, yet, as we concluded, it seemed as if the Horde had won the day by bringing Double Trouble into their mix. In the interim, however, the Rebellion is feeling pretty good about themselves right now which is nice to see as they still deal with the loss of Queen Angella.

We’re still getting into the meat and potatoes of this season, as the kids on the street would say, but this much is clear: the Rebellion is being almost lulled into a false sense of security right now. They have no idea that the transmission to Horde Prime made it through and that him and his forces will be coming to Etheria. It’s going to be a game-changer and, though we’ve kind of backed off Adora’s intense She-Ra training, she is still learning all she is capable of and realizing her true power and purpose. Add that to Glimmer being new to the throne and the learning curve that goes along with that and it’s not unreasonable to think that Catra is right: this is the time for the Horde to end the Rebellion. Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra & the Princesses of Power S04E02 “The Valley of the Lost”

Welcome back to another episode recap as we continue with Season 4 of Netflix’s She-Ra and the Princesses of Power! We all know the deal by now: this show is great, I love it and I’m incredibly happy it’s back for me to enjoy.

Episode 1 was fun and laid all the groundwork for what will be coming this season and it totally nailed it. I came away even more excited to continue than I was even coming in which is saying something. So where do we go now? We’ve got now Queen Glimmer leading the forces of the Rebellion while – unbeknownst to them – Hordak’s GPS signal did go through and he know awaits the master Horde Prime to show up on Etheria. Catra, however, is done doing things Hordak’s way and is challenging him in ways I’d legit never expected anyone within the Horde to ever do as she becomes ever consumed with squashing the Rebellion for good.

How will they follow up on all these new happenings in Etheria? Time to find out! Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra & the Princesses of Power S04E01 “The Coronation”

Welcome back to another episode recap! I’m super excited to be diving into this new season of She-Ra on Netflix! Season 3 was like a tease with only six episodes, but this time around they’ve given us a robust 13 to feast on and, if we’ve learned anything from the previous three seasons, this will be terrific. I’m serious. I love this show and they’ve been killing it since debuting on Netflix.

When we left off, the Rebellion had thought they had stymied Hordak’s plans to open a portal to bring Horde Prime and even more Horde troops to Etheria, but this victory had a high cost as Queen Angella of Bright Moon was lost after sacrificing herself to ensure that Adora could still protect Etheria as She-Ra. Unbeknownst to the the Rebellion, is that the portal was open long enough for Horde Prime to receive a transmission showing the location of Etheria and setting course. Shit, as they say, is about to get real.

I recapped all six episodes of Season 3 so if you need to catch up quick, you can always go back in the archives to do so. I actually recommend that you do because I would love the extra website clicks that would produce. Kthanxbai. Let’s start Season 4! Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra & The Princesses of Power S03E6: “The Portal”

Here we are, people! The main event! It may have only been six episodes, but the first five were legit and we have no reason to expect anything less from the sixth.

In yesterday’s episode, the world of Etheria was trapped in an alternate reality or consciousness that only Adora seemed to recognize on her own at first after Catra had opened the interdimensional portal. The portal is now ripping through Etheria threatening to completely wipe it from existence unless Adora can go back to her beginning as She-Ra and retrieve her sword as directed by Madame Razz.

Madame Razz is pretty mysterious, right? In the original series, she was basically a stand-in for Orko as Filmation pretty much just copied the template that made He-Man so popular, but in this telling, she’s not as over-the-top from a comedic aspect although she still has glimpses of it, but she’s more a friendly, elder who may not be as sharp as she once was, but still has great value in wisdom and experience.

Razz has been the one pushing Adora in the right direction post-portal since, as she states, she’s seen this before when Mara (the previous She-Ra) opened a portal to save Etheria a thousand years ago. There’s been some debate and hypothesizing over Razz’s relationship with Mara and the way I took it since Season 1 was that Mara was the daughter of Razz from the way Razz would say, “my Mara.” That may or may not be true and I’m sure it’ll play out in some form, but I’ve also seen theories that Razz IS Mara and that was something I’d never considered.

I try not to dig too far down the internet rabbit hole for these things since I’ve genuinely enjoyed the surprises and swerves these writers have dropped thus far, but maybe I’ll have to change that mindset once this episode is over and engage since I know I’m going to be left feening for more She-Ra after this.

Yesterday’s episode left us with Adora trying to find that moment in memory where she first met Glimmer and Bow and came into contact with the sword while Catra – thought to already be portal collateral damage, pulls herself back up intent on stopping Adora from claiming another win at her expense.

This has been a lot of fun and we’ve got 24 minutes of action to go. Let’s do it! Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra & The Princesses of Power S03E05: “Remember”

Welcome back to another episode watch on CarJoeMeZ as we conclude the work week with the penultimate episode of She-Ra & The Princesses of Power. Quick note: since this season is only six episodes, there’s no need to make anyone wait until Monday for the finale so that will be up tomorrow for a very special Saturday edition of the Daily Cartoon! I know you’re excited. I’m excited too.

But first, we have an episode to watch today which is coming off a dramatic turn of events at the conclusion of yesterday’s episode. Despite all the evidence pointing to doom should the Horde open the portal, Catra decided to ignore all of that and allowed her inner rage over everyone from Adora to Hordak to Shadow Weaver turning their backs on her to take over her decision-making and flipped the switch which left us with a Sopranos-style blackout and wondering just what fucking happened.

Look, I’ve covered each of the prior episodes this week so if you need a quick refresher, just hit the homepage and read up. There’s massive action and fallout that we need to get to immediately so no more wasting time! Netflix and chill time. Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra & The Princesses of Power S03E02: “Huntara”

Welcome back to another episode recap! After opening the season with a banger, we’re sure to be joining Adora as she now begins following whatever clues she has available to put together her past and find out just who she is.

In yesterday’s blog I mentioned how the fact that they’ve stayed away from this kind of reveal was actually something I liked about this series. It allowed this universe to just build around the characters involved and let their stories grow and, after two seasons, I was really OK with that and just looking forward to seeing more from Adora and her pals (and quasi-non-pal Entrapta). I think I pretty much tossed aside the possibility that they’d go this route with Adora so when it happened it became a genuine “Oh shit!” moment for me. In today’s world of blogs and review sites and spoilers, the fact that I really didn’t know this was coming was pretty terrific. Continue reading

Daily Cartoon: She-Ra & The Princesses of Power S03E01: “The Price of Power”

Welcome everybody to a brand new beginning! This week we’re going to be watching Season 3 of the Netflix series She-Ra and the Princesses of Power! Having just completed the 200X Mike Young Productions He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, this seemed like a natural piggyback since Season 3 was just recently released.

Since we’re not starting from the very beginning, let’s do a quick little history: the series focuses on teenage Adora who has grown up while part of the Horde and has finally graduated to Force Captain. When she finally leaves the Fright Zone, she realizes that the Horde are the real bad guys and comes across a sword that enables her to transform into She-Ra, the defender of Etheria. Pretty simple, right? Right.

Whereas in the original Filmation She-Ra Adora was the kidnapped twin sister of Prince Adam (He-Man) and would eventually feature crossovers and Christmas celebrations between universes, through two seasons of this series, there hasn’t been any mention of that little plot point and really, it’s not even missed.

 

Though I was kind of iffy on some of the first images that were released publicly prior to the series’ debut, I promised myself to give it a fair shot since it was being done by Dreamworks and I absolutely loved the Voltron: Legendary Defender series they put out a couple of years prior that was way, way fucking better than anything Voltron ever before. I even did an episode recap of the premiere episode of that way back when so you know I’m not lying. Continue reading

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Daily Cartoon! Voltron: Legendary Defender: S.1,E.1: “The Rise of Voltron”

Welcome back to your daily cartoon on Car JoeMez! Before we get started, remember to check out the weekly podcast The Car JoeMez Podcast on iTunesSoundcloud and other outlets where podcasts are gotten. Remember to like, subscribe and leave some positive reviews to help us build that listener base so we can keep doing fun little things like cartoon reviews and other projects. Like karate in the garage.

Now that the business is out of the way, we’re doing something a bit different today. Still a cartoon, but a much more modern one that what we’ve been watching. Last year, Netflix revived the Voltron franchise with a brand new series produced by DreamWorks. Voltron: Defender of the Universe was a huge deal when I was a kid. I remember having toys and RC robots, but when I think back, I don’t remember much of the actual show.

 

I do, however, remember being an angst-filled teen when Mighty Morphin Power Rangers came out and I was the douche yelling to anybody who would listen that it was just a Voltron rip-off. I was the kind of teen that would probably boo John Cena because I thought it was cool. Spoiler: it’s not cool and John Cena is the best.

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I have legitimately never seen an episode of this new incarnation so this will be a brand new viewing through fair and balanced eyes. I’m actually looking forward to this. All episodes seem to be the normal 22-23 minutes except for the premiere which has a run time of 68 minutes. What that means is that this review will probably get a little lengthy. And seeing as how most of my reviews run around 1,200 words for a 22 minute episode, this has every possibility to get out of control. But if I’m going to watch a show I’ve never seen, why not start at the beginning and seeing if it’s worth continuing.

Now that we’ve burned over 300 words just introducing this, let’s get to the cartoon!

Voltron: Legendary Defender: S.1, E.1: “The Rise of Voltron”

Originally Released: June 10, 2016

Three space explorers are on an expedition to one of Pluto’s moons trying to find evidence of intergalactic life when they are attacked and captured by the evil Galra empire. The three are referred to as “primitive scientists” and are thrown into the Galra’s prisons.

We cut to one year later where three students (Lance, Hunk and Pidge) at Galaxy Garrison – a school to train space pilots and engineers – completely bomb a simulator rescue mission. Lance, the pilot, is reprimanded and told that he’s only in the class because a better pilot was kicked out of the program which opened a spot for him.

After curfew, Lance decides to build some team camaraderie by sneaking out with Hunk and Pidge. Pidge, however, is found outside with some fancy computer equipment scanning the airwaves trying to find messages and information having to do with the lost space exploration crew from a year ago.

While they’re out there, an alien spacecraft comes hurtling down and crashes. The school’s security immediately cordons it off and it turns out that the person on board is Shiro, one of the lost explorers. He is talking about alien invasions and that they’re in great danger, but everybody just thinks he’s crazy.

The three kids are trying to figure out a way to run down and rescue Shiro who is apparently a famous explorer when another kid is shown causing a distraction and sneaking in to do the same. This turns out to be Keith who Lance considers his rival and is the pilot who dropped out of the Garrison that opened a spot for Lance.

Together, the four kids rescue Shiro and escape. Shiro struggles to remember the details of the past year, but Keith fills him in on some energy source he’s been studying. The word “Voltron”keeps coming up in Shiro’s head and Pidge’s research and they all agree that it’s a weapon they need to find before the Galra does.

This is a good time to take a Zack Morris timeout.

time-out

OK, so Shiro is this renown space guy and, basically, he gets kidnapped by four kids and he’s all just, “Whoa, thanks for saving my bacon back there”??? If I was Shiro, I’d be like, “Where the fuck are your parents?” or “Why aren’t you in school?” or even better, “Where the white women at?”

But whatever. Nobody cares about what I would do.

OK. Time in.

They new fivesome goes to a cave that Keith’s been finding at the heart of the energy source he’s been tracking.There’s carvings of lions on all the walls, but when Lance presses his hand against them, they activate. A tunnel opens that drags the group to the bowels of the cave and it’s there that they find their first lion.

 

The blue lion basically goes on auto pilot and heads into space where it is immediately met by an alien ship. The same alien ship that captured Shiro a year ago. The aliens chase the lion until a mysterious wormhole opens and takes the lion in then closes before the aliens can continue following.

The lion leads them to planet Altea which nobody knows of and touches down at a castle. The cautiously scan the castle until finding a control room where they are met by Princes Allura and Coran, her royal adviser, who have been in suspended animation for 10,000 years. Allura tells the story of how her father, King Alfor and his kingdom, was overtaken by Emperor Zarkon and the Galra. To keep the power of Voltron out of Zarkon’s hands, Alfor had hidden the five lions that form Voltron all around the solar system.

OK, despite some early convenience and silliness, I’m fucking with this now.

The group immediately concludes that Zarkon will come know that he knows the blue lion has been unearthed. Allura says that the lion picks its pilot. Kind of like how the wand picks the wizard in Harry Potter. Despite not having met any of the rest of the lions, Allura basically assigns a lion to each of our new heroes. Lance keeps the blue, Pidge gets green, Hunk yellow, Keith red and Shiro the leader will get black. The group splits and goes hunting for the other lions since Allura had what amounts to lion lo-jack installed in her brain by her father before he was killed.

 

To save time, the crew finds the green and yellow lions easy enough, but the red lion is being held on a Galra ship. Obviously, our gang heads to said ship to free the red lion, but things become more complex when Pidge reveals that his father and brother were also on the expedition with Shiro a year ago and could still be held captive on the ship.

Keith is able to take control of the red lion while Shiro and Pidge free whatever prisoners they can find, but no sign of Pidge’s father or brother. This seems like something that will play out for a while. On the bright side, gaining control of the red lion now allows them to gain access to the black lion which is held locked in Princess Allura’s castle until all of the other lions could be found.

 

With control of all the lions, our palladins try to form Voltron to thwart the attacks on Altea by the Galra. There’s just one problem: they have no fucking idea how to do so. Just when it looks as if their inexperience will cost them everything, Shiro gives an inspirational speech and the lions take control to form the ultimate weapon: Voltron, defender of the universe.

With the power of Voltron unleashed, the palladins are able to destroy the Galra and send them packing. While a great victory, this is just the beginning of a great war to be had. Many more action-packed adventures are to come.

Final Thoughts:

I’m often critical of newer style animation because I think it looks too computer-generated, but this show walks a nice line with its smooth animation and coloring. The overall look and feel of this production were terrific and I was happy to see that.

As for the story, I’m really, really impressed. OK sure, near the beginning when they’re setting things up, some meetings or moments are just too convenient, but they don’t bog down or draw anything away from where we’re going. It’s silly, it happens and we move on and forget about it.

By the time we meet Princess Allura on Altea, I was completely invested in the show and – while I took for granted that they’d eventually form Voltron and win the day – still had a feeling of tenseness as things were looking bleak for our heroes.

All in all, I absolutely loved this debut episode for the updated series and will definitely be watching the rest of it as my busy, busy schedule allows. Like I said earlier, this is a Netflix series and there’s actually two seasons available now for your viewing enjoyment.

If you were a fan of the original, I see no reason that you wouldn’t be into this re-make and if you’ve got youngsters who are unfamiliar with the previous iterations or maybe even are unfamiliar yourself, this was a definite score for a first episode. Go check it out and have some fun like I did.

❤ Joe