Well, the premiere of the of the all new ‘ThunderCats’ was quite an adventure. I’m going to say this right up front… if you didn’t like this premiere, you probably don’t like anything and are super critical of everything. Ah, that’s over; now, HOLY SH*T was this a good way to open a series.
This isn’t your 1980’s ThunderCats, that’s for sure. This is a dark and epic tale of the downfall of an empire and what one misunderstood prince will do to save his people. Don’t fret fans of the original, there are plenty of call backs to the ‘ThunderCats’ of yore.
For starters Larry Kenny, the voice of the original series’ Lion-O lends his voice as the current Lord of the ThunderCats King Claudus (who looks an awful lot like Mon-Star of the ‘Silverhawks’ cartoon). Oh my, was this a treat, especially when he was working with this incarnation of Lion-O (voiced by one of my favorite’s Will Friedle) on how exactly to use the Sword of Omens, the source of the ThundeCats power. King Claudus and a young Lion-O are not where the changes end in this series.
One major change Tygra (voiced by Matthew Mercer), now Lion-O’s older brother who is good at everything and the prince most of the Cat’s want to see become King. I really enjoyed Tygra’s brash cocky attitude towards the young would be king, this comes from trying to make his young brother understand he can be more than the weird tech-obsessed slacker.
The next big change has to deal with Cheetara (voiced by the ever so lovely Emmanuelle Chriqui), she is part of a secret and mysterious order of Clerics who’s duty it is to protect the Royal Family at all costs. Does she still have super speed? Yes. Is she still full of piss and vinegar? Yes. Is she one of the most badass fighters in all of ThunderCatdom? In the words of the immortal Stone Cold Steve Austin… “OH, Hell Yes!” I can’t wait to see more of her in action.
The inclusion of Wilykit and Wilykat as a pair of street urchin theives, is pretty interesting, though I suspect they are included to drawn in the younger viewers and sell some toys, for this reason the character designs are cute. Their hunt for treasure and the good life will probably prove to be a real asset to Team Lion-O when they eventually meet up and join forces.
The best change of all, Snarf. No longer is Snarf nursemaid to the future Lord of the ThunderCats. No longer does he spout whining nonsense followed by the requisite “Snarf, Snarf”. No, he is now simply Lion-O’s faithful pet, there to tag along and see the action as it happens.
In this new series I loved the character designs, the Cats all look like cats, you can see the fur and their sharp teeth and claws. And the Lizards have different looks, as there appears to be a couple of different classes of them. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the waring animals of this savage planet will look like. I also, really enjoyed how the Cats are basically in the stone age, they don’t have tech of any kind. Heck, they don’t even believe technology exists, the just believe in their King, the Eye of Thundara, the Sword of Omens and the lost Book of Omens (which lies at the foot of the setting sun, whatever that means).
This series is going to be epic, there are heroes, villains, traitors and protectors. There are a lot of great moments in this premiere that I couldn’t bring myself to spoil for you, but know this I love, love, loved every second of this episode, and I can’t wait to see more. The Cats may have lost the first battle, but Team Lion-O, while down, is not out. I can’t wait to see what happens next Friday at 8:30 EST on Cartoon Network.