She-Ra and the Princesses of Power is a rather interesting modern take on the cartoon character with various updates that help tell a more compelling narrative. In this first season it's mostly following one individual, Adora (Aimee Carrero) as she learns that perhaps being on the side of "The Horde" isn't the best of things. It focuses on the clash between the fractured princess groups and the enemy entity that is slowly destroying the landscape while also removing various peaceful settlements.
Adora discovers this one day as she's out on a mission running into two fierce individuals that are also leads in the show. There's Glimmer (Karen Fukuhara) and Bow (Marcus Scribner) which are two close friends from one of the key kingdoms. The former is actually a princess and daughter to the leader of the Rebellion. It's a lot to take in, but this really doesn't spoil much as it's just setting up the general narrative. They cover quite a bit right in the first episode and set the stage for this initial season.
Through various combative situations they end up paired together and Adora is able to witness the crimes her side is putting on. This creates a split and she battles this fresh perspective as she clashes against old friends while learning a new way to live. Most of the episodes are standalone in what's going on, but it does start to merge into a longer setup towards the latter episodes within the first season. They're always something new to start, presenting fresh places and different characters along the way in this journey of a heroic purpose.
They have some fairly strong and rather dark themes presented in this. I found that rather surprising and did actually get into this for whatever reason. It certainly has a target audience towards the younger females crowd, but it wasn't at all a bad watch. They actually have some fairly memorable moments and lots of action throughout. It could have been a little less over the top at times, but for the most part the drama was handled well.
They certainly set up neat conflicts and there's a lot of material to go from. The world itself seems rather expansive with many kingdoms to discover and almost endless possibilities going forward as the conflict builds. They did a particularly great job of setting up the direct conflict of two, almost siblings and that's built throughout the season. This theme felt like the core element as you saw such close friends want to be close, but their desires got in the way of that. The animation work here is fine, it has a nice quality to it. There's a fair amount of detail and the combative sequences are mostly smooth. I did feel they used her She-Ra transformation sequence too much. I get it, the team spent a long time making it look cool. Each location they visited felt distinct and they brought a nice sense of wonder to this strange fantasy world.
She-Ra and the Princesses of Power is a solid modern take on the character that provides darker tones while still being on pace with its intended audience. It had some fine animation work and a plethora of distinct locations. It also had a varied, and very different type of cast that should have a character for any type of individual. There was a nice mix of fantasy, natural and technology aspects which makes sense as you progress through this first season. The season was a good length and while episodes were mostly standalone, they contributed to the overall narrative with the ending being a longer event as opposed to separate entries.
This show worked well and I think they did a good job with the update to this character. I was surprised as I didn't know what to expect when I started viewing. It has a quality to it and it's a solid addition to the Netflix Original animation line-up, especially for the younger female audience in this regard. Still, there's quite a bit of action and conflict between the sides. They were also able to deliver on the more emotional segments and the conflict between the two almost siblings was the strong part. It was also fun to see the wild reactions to this new world and they weird horse that comes around randomly it would seem.
She-Ra and the Princesses of Power Season 1 Review at Home with Streamed Viewing
Screening was Provided by Netflix