‘Thundercats Season One, Book Two'
The DVD release “Thundercats Season One, Book Two” contains the second eight episodes of the 2011 revival of the 1980s action cartoon.
“Thundercats” tells the story of Lion-O, the prince of Thundera who must journey through Third Earth to find the Book of Omens and become Lord of the Thundercats.
In the revamp, Thundera is a land of feline-like humanoids who rule over other animal-like humanoids. When the evil Mumm-Ra attacks Thundera, the king is killed and the kingdom overthrown.
Lion-O and his companions Tygra, Panthro, Snarf, Cheetara, and WilyKat must journey across Third Earth to find new allies and recover powerful artifacts that will allow Lion-O to become true Lord of the Thundercats.
This DVD release begins with an episode called “Berbils,” which reintroduces the Ro-Bear Berbils from the original series.
Sort of robot Care Bears, the Berbils were kind of a tough sell in the somewhat cheesier 1980s version, though the show here plays them in a slightly tongue-in-cheek fashion.
In the next few episodes, as the Thundercats meet other denizens of Third Earth, Lion-O is taught he must always keep the bigger picture in mind.
Meanwhile, a love triangle develops among Lion-O, the female cleric Cheetara, and Lion-O's older, adopted brother Tygra.
Lion-O and Tygra's rivalry over the crown and Cheetara's affections are a continuing subplot through these eight episodes.
The update takes the characters of the original series and melds them into a fantasy-style hero's journey.
Producer Ethan Spaulding worked on “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” and you can see influences from that program on this one.
By episode 14, “New Alliances,” the Thundercats have gone on the offensive against Mumm-Ra's army.
Lion-O wants to turn the lizards against their master, but Mumm-Ra retaliates by bringing in two even more vicious generals, Addicus and Kaynar, updates of Monkian and Jackalman from the original series.
Book Two ends with the two-part “Trials of Lion-O,” another concept borrowed from the original series, but with a new twist, as Lion-O must prove his skills and heart to regain a chance at life.
— Matthew Price