An eerily familiar red-headed kid named Opie turned up in the He-Man cartoon
Opie Taylor, is that you?
Image: Filmation / Group W Productions
Considering all the swords and sorcery and jacked biceps, a He-Man cartoon might seem like the last place to find a reference to The Andy Griffith Show. But The Masters of the Universe and Mayberry do have some things in common — beyond Cringer and Barney Fife both having a case of the shaky knees whenever they get scared.
Alan Oppenheimer, who voiced many of the characters on the He-Man and the Masters of the Universe cartoon from 1983–85 (including the aforementioned Cringer), was a familiar face on classic television. He appeared on everything from The Untouchables to Hogan's Heroes. And he played Mr. Ruskin on The Andy Griffith Show, in "Barney Hosts a Summit Meeting," the last episode to ever feature Don Knotts.
As a side note: John Erwin, who voiced He-Man, was a classic TV man himself. Erwin played the character Teddy in 22 episodes of Rawhide.
But the reason we're here today is to talk about "The Ancient Mirror of Avathar," a nautical adventure from the second season of He-Man. Prince Adam (that's He-Man, you know) is sailing around aboard a ship called the Fairwind. Frankly, that's not too important. The fascinating part of the story for MeTV fans awaits inside the lighthouse.
An old salt name Angus Og (Oppenheimer) mans the lighthouse. His teenage son lives and works by his side. He's a redheaded kid, very "aw-shucks." Due to the boy's negligence, the lighthouse malfunctions, which calls for a moral lecture from dad. It all feels very Andy-and-Opie.
What's crazy is that the kid is literally named Opie! Not only that, he looks a good deal like Ron Howard from the color era of The Andy Griffith Show. You can watch it here.
We always knew Andy Griffith was the original He-Man.