Episodes: "The Sword of Omens" &
"Ancient Spirits of Evil"
Network: Cartoon Network
Premiere Date: Friday, July 29th at 8:00pm (ET/PT)
Regular Air Date: Fridays at 8:30pm (ET/PT)
Thundera, a vast and powerful nation, has been brought to its knees. Apparently, there are those who feel the Cats' stranglehold of the land's natural resources, physical labor, and general political authority has been too absolute for far too long. Perhaps then it is no surprise that within forty-eight hours after being introduced to such a great and just land, viewers witness the kingdom nearly collapse upon itself. ThunderCats is most assuredly an origin story for Lion-O, who emerges here as a curious if meddlesome prince. However, it has become rather clear that in order to understand Lion-O, and the impartial king he pledges to become, we must first understand Thundera, and the complex world in which it claims dominance.
This is an animated series revamp worth waiting for, and should prove an equally indomitable test for producers as well; is this a quality franchise rebirth, or will we receive lumps of episodes hurriedly squeaked out over the next three-and-a-half years for their own sake?
But a lot of that doesn't matter right now, because Lion-O has some butt-kicking to do. ThunderCats has plenty of that. To begin however, Lion-O is the only blood heir to the throne. His impressionable father, Claudus, among others, constantly berates him in that he doesn't take his duties as Prince of Thundera seriously. The boy is a bit of a derelict and refuses the added responsibility, preferring to tinker in a workshop with ancient technology than to prostrate himself before the royal court. Lion-O is a smart and curious youth; character traits that inevitably lead him into a number of sticky situations.
Lion-O's tendency to punch out bandits (women, too) or throw elbows at errant townspeople is usually counterbalanced by his more honest, loftier ambitions for Thundera.
He wants to become a merciful ruler, believe it or not, but it's evident that his selective empathy is going to generate some serious hurdles moving forward. Lion-O's father detests such lethargy and favors ruling with an iron fist.
The story of ThunderCats is rather enticing in the way it eases into Lion-O's recurring bouts with genius and folly. The series makes a triumphant effort in convincing you there is a big, wide world out there in (and beyond) Thundera, but remains conscious of the need to familiarize viewers with the smaller personalities and relationships that keep the animation glued together.
|Lion-O's father, Claudus, is a real beast, and has little patience for his son's impishness in the |
face of a real threat. Claudus puts "the Pride" of Thundera before everything else.