Saturday, August 06, 2011

The Sun Always Shines on T.V.: Thundercats

Rebooting 80's shows and movies seems to be in vogue right now. Whether it's Battlestar Galactica, The A-Team, He-Man, or Voltron 80's shows are coming back. The best of these, so far, was BSG. They took the basic foundation of the show and turned it into something so much better and interesting. But that might change with the latest reboot Thundercats.

The change up things a bit on the reboot. First off, their planet of Thundera doesn't explode. They are on 3rd Earth to begin with. And here on Thundera they (the cats) are rulers of the planet. They do a good job of walking that line of ruler versus dictator. Lion-O is in line to be king, but doesn't seem mature enough. He is interested in technology, which in this version is supposed to be a myth. Which is another opposite of the original series, considering they needed a rocket to leave the planet. Watching the first few minutes I felt like I was watching a version of The Little Mermaid...stay with me. Lion-O is supposed to be with his dad going over the process of becoming King, but he is out in the "slums" trying to buy technology for his collection. Sounds pretty familiar, even down to when he realizes he is late...classic.

The show is written really well and there appears to be some pacing going on. Panthro is assumed dead right now, but of course will appear in the show. The second episode felt like a filler almost because you were expecting this huge battle with Mumm-Ra and it doesn't happen. Instead we get an episode that feels like a re-telling of Moby Dick. At first I was disappointed, but then I realized that the writes are adding depth to these characters and giving some sort of back story for later on.

In terms of the characters designs, I really can't complain. Here is a photo of the old versions;

Nothing bad there...classic 80's animation. Here are the new versions;

I have read some people complain about the anime style, but that doesn't really bother me. Panthro having mutton chops is a little weird, but oh well. The other thing that is tons better is that Snarf doesn't talk. Now as a kid, Snarf didn't bother me that much, but when I watch those episodes now...Snarf is annoying. Finally, I really like how they kept the same design of Mumm-Ra. He has a little bit more reptile in his design, but that goes with the new story. By the way, there was a definite shout out to the original series with the original voice of Lion-O voicing the King in the new series...everyone knew about that. However, Lynx-O (the blind Thundercat) makes an appearance and has a line in the new series. He is presumed dead, but maybe he will come back.

There is so much to like about this new series. I could talk about how different it is that Tygra is now Lion-O's step brother or Cheetarah is a cleric. This show has a lot of potential so I will sit back and enjoy the ride.

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