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YMMV / ThunderCats (1985)

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  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Is Lion-O truly the Master of the Sword of Omens, or is he a slave to it? There has been quite a bit of debate about this over the years among fans, not helped by the fact that the Sword displays some degree of sentience.
    • Mumm-Ra's first real revelation to the Thundercats. Rather than rant on how much he relishes evil, he angrily protests that he has not wronged them, they are the ones who have intruded into his life... with nothing to gain from this statement that contradicts his previous words to the Mutants about coveting the Eye of Thundera, it makes one wonder if Mumm-Ra really desired more power or was he content with his life before the opposing aliens landed on his world?
  • Anvilicious: Like a lot of 80s cartoon series, a lot of this show's episodes were focused on some specific "moral", and weren't very subtle about it.
    • Somewhat justified in that Lion-O needed to be taught these lessons, and quickly, so he could become an effective leader.
    • And sometimes a little Narmy, like in one episode where Tigra practically looks at the camera when stating that laws that go unobeyed "are just words." You know, rather than rescue their leader from a mob of Brainwashed and Crazy natives.
  • Ass Pull: Some characters (including Lion-O) somehow get massive powers on convenient moments, like Cheetara's psychic Limit Break.
  • Bizarro Episode: Most of the William Overgard episodes tend to be this. One episode had Lion-O go to another planet without the Sword of Omens, defeat the Lunatacks with common household products, and then he was able to summon the sword from all across the galaxy to the planet he was on and flew back to Third Earth with it.
    • The biggest offender was episode 85, Sideswipe. It's a nonstop parade of WTF elements and moments and some of the cast almost acting Out of Character.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Panthro is regarded by many fans as their favorite.
    • Tygra also garnered some decent popularity, especially with girls watching the show. He was the Thundercat besides Lion-O to get a new figure in Bandai's line of classic ThunderCats. Many of his fans were upset by the changes made to his personality in the 2011 reboot.
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    • Pumyra was under-utilized because the producers often didn't know just what to do with her, but many fans claim her as their favorite character. The anticipation surrounding her appearance in the 2011 reboot is insane.
    • Grune was one of the more popular villains despite a handful of appearances.
    • Alluro was pretty well-liked even by fans who hated the season 2 cast additions.
      • Ditto Lynx-O.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Chilla
    • Also, Ta-She. Even Lion-O thinks so.
  • Ham and Cheese: Mumm-Ra, so very much so.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Early in the second season, Lynx-O tells Lion-O that his voice sounds just like his father's. In the 2011 remake, Larry Kenny, Lion-O's original VA, is the VA for Lion-O's father, Claudus.
    • Depending on who you ask, it is either an example of this trope, or its exact opposite. The show's project development was credited to a "Leisure Concepts, Inc.", a licensing agency that is perhaps best known by a much later name: 4Kids Entertainment. However, because they were only a licensing agency at the timenote , they do not own the rights.note 
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  • Informed Wrongness: In "All That Glitters" Jaga harshly and completely blames Lion-O for bringing down a curse on the Sword of Omens by attacking a fellow Thundercat. Never mind that it was a clever scheme by Mumm-Ra, it was clearly Tygra who impulsively ambushed Lion-O who reacted in self-defense; the area was dark and it could have been a matter of life and death, not leaving much room to discern his attacker's identity as Jaga was suggesting he should have done.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Ta-She; while she conspired with evil and maintained a cool and callous demeanour, the timewarp prison has taken a toll on her. Her last moments have her desperately screaming that she only wanted her freedom.
  • Memetic Mutation: Mumm-Ra likes to watch.
  • The Scrappy: The entire Snarf race
    • Special mention should go to Snarfer, who was just downright annoying. Also the three new ThunderCats from season 2 weren't very well-received.
    • The character probably most deserving of fans' hatred is Captain Bragg, who made the Mutants and Lunatacs look like a bunch of chumps (well, more so than usual) and put them on a train out of the series. He gets away with hypnotizing WilyKat and tricking him into helping him and doesn't get punished for it. Bragg doesn't even have any real coolness to him to make up for it, he's just an old circus ringleader with a talking crow.
  • Seasonal Rot: The fourth season is generally not well thought of even though it featured some of the series best animation.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Mumm-Rana is Mumm-Ra's Good Counterpart serving the Ancient Spirits of Good and being a pretty dang strong heroic force. She only appears twice and very little is ever revealed.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: In one episode, Monkian's comrades ask him where he's getting his info on the ThunderCats. He smugly explains that he's seeing one of the Warrior Maidens, and she's The Mole. This revelation is never brought up again.
    • Mumm-Ra sets up a plan to lure Lion-O to an area where his most formidable opponents will be waiting for him. Summoning Slythe, Safari Joe, Spidera, and (just to make sure) Ratar-O, it was explicitly stated that Lion-O was to face them combined as each gave him a hard time in the past so there was no way he could conquer them all at once. He only ends up fighting two of them, and separately no less.
    • "Telepathy Beam" has Cheetara receiving a startling vision of the Mutants making short work of the Berbil village with more brutality than seen before and then Skytomb itself arrives on the scene. So disturbed is Cheetara witnessing their plight that Lion-O vows to settle things once and for all. The whole thing turned out to be a false alarm which suited the episode's plot, but considering how exciting the scene was and the less than thrilling send-off the villains actually got in a later episode; it's a shame it wasn't real after all.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: The Mutants of Plun-Darr - Slythe, Monkian, Jackalman, Vulture-Man - even though they're evil they're just so Blessed with Suck that sometimes you just can't help feeling sorry for them. This is not the case with their 2011 counterparts, however.
    • Mumm-Ra, himself, in the later seasons. Despite his evil goals, he really works and plans tirelessly to achieve them and please his dire masters, while all the ThunderCats seem to do is just keep using The Sword of Omens over and over to inexplicably and conveniently undo all his efforts.
    • This was taken up to eleven in the last episode of the five-parter "Return to Thundera", when finally convinced he had succeeded despite all odds and heroic ass-pulls, he was suddenly faced with the Ancient Spirits of Evil's wrath for his failure, and could only say: "I... I don't understand!". At that moment, the show felt less like "good will always triumph over evil" and more like watching the desperate struggles of one determined being against an elitist group with a handheld Plot Device.


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