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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.
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    • 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.
  • Anti-Climax: When it comes to fight scenes, the show has a rather bad habit of hyping up confrontations with underwhelming results. Notable examples include Panthro vs Slythe unarmed (Slaves of Catle Plundarr), Lion-O vs Hachiman sword duel (The Thunder-cutter), Lion-O vs Panthro (Trial of Strength), Thundercats vs each other (Catfight)(Mad Bubbler), and Mumm-Ra vs Lion-O unarmed (Book of Omens).
  • Ass Pull: Some characters (including Lion-O) somehow get massive powers on convenient moments, like Cheetara's psychic Limit Break.
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  • Awesome Music: The opening theme song is decently regarded and remembered.
  • Base-Breaking Character: Ben-Gali. There are those who see him as interesting, competent and likable, but like the other season 2 thundercats he didn't integrate perfectly into the cast and is far less popular than Pumyra and Lynx-O.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: Near the end of "Jackalman's Rebellion". Right after the mentioned rebellion fails, Jackalman goes back to Castle Plun-Darr, asking for forgiveness and to be accepted as part of the Mutants once again, while being mocked and rebuked by them. All of this while being watched in video by Wilykit and Wilykat, without any explanation of how they can spy on them, when exactly did they sneak a camera in there nor why they didn't use it to avoid future Mutants' attacks.
  • 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.
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    • 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.
    • 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 was 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 
    • The episode "The Shadowmaster" centers around a place called "the Shadow Realm." The phrase is used over and over again throughout the episode.
    • The conflict of "All That Glitters" is triggered by Mumm-Ra briefly tricking Lion-O and Tygra into fighting each other. They get over it pretty quickly. 25 years later, not so much...
    • Did Toph Bei Fong learn her style of humor from Lynx-O?
      Wilykat: Anyone entering [the Jungles of Darkness] might as well be blind.
      Lynx-O: Of course, that wouldn't make much difference to me, but the rest of you...
  • 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.
    • Ma-Mutt is as nasty as his master, but it's hard not to feel sorry for him in "Ma-Mutt's Confusion", when he is berated by Mumm-Ra then kicked out of the pyramid.
  • Memetic Mutation: Mumm-Ra likes to watch.
  • The Scrappy: The entire Snarf race
    • Special mention should go to Snarfer, who was just downright annoying.
    • 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.
    • Sondora, the mysterious keeper of the powerful sound stones, was hinted to be in touch with the fate of Third Earth. As Lion-O confided his real fears that the forces of evil may one day truly unite, she reassured him of her return when the time comes. The foreshadowed showdown and reappearance doesn't come to pass.
    • The Mutants and Lunatacs, in the sense of their Badass Decay at the end of the series.
  • 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.
    • The Thundercats' allies become an official team dubbed the "League of Third Earth" and the planet is left in their hands. Unfortunately, they never really got to do anything or interact with one another and all of the main villains were already gone.
    • The infamous "Circus Train" episode could have made for an entertaining breather episode had it excluded the Lunatacs and villains' writeoff, and focused on the interactions with the more comical mutants.

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