Even the most diehard of He-Man fans would be pressed to remember Andra. The character only appeared in a handful of Marvel’s Masters of the Universe comics in the mid-‘80s, most of them as a brief cameo. But that changes in Netflix and Kevin Smith’s Revelation, where the lieutenant of the Eternian guard joins Teela on an unexpected journey — one that turns Andra into one of the show’s most important characters.
“Revelation is really a love letter to the original series, and I think having [a new] character is really the entrance for the audience in a lot of ways into this new space,” says voice actor Tiffany Smith. “You meet Andra and she’s with a different version of Teela, or in a different part of Teela’s life. And I think that’s just a really easy gateway entrance back into the world.”
The reason Andra is so necessary to Revelation is two-fold. The first is that the new Netflix series has been billed as a continuation of the nearly 40-year-old original He-Man and the Masters of the Universe cartoon specifically, so any character that can act as a surrogate for any new audience members is especially important. Although she’s accompanying her friend Teela (played by Sarah Michelle Gellar, who we also spoke to), Andra is entering the world of the Masters of the Universe and their fight against Skeletor just as new viewers will be.
The second reason is that Andra brings some more (much-needed) diversity to the classic ‘80s franchise. “It’s also really cool because for me, you know, growing up, watching cartoons, there weren’t a ton of characters on the screen that looked like me,” says Smith. “So to expand the [MotU] universe even more and making it more diverse, I think that was awesome and I’m so happy that I get to be a part of it, because yes, I watched the cartoon growing up!”
Having seen Revelation’s first five episodes (and without spoiling anything), I can say Andra is a great addition to the classic cartoon’s canon and one of the highlights of Kevin Smith’s cartoon — and Tiffany Smith is one of Revelation’s best voice actors, to boot. If Netflix does decide to renew the series after season one ends, Masters of the Universe will be better for having Andra and Smith as part of it.
The first half of Masters of the Universe: Revelation debuts on Netflix on July 23.