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Ed Loves Bacon - Preview: ThunderCats

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  • Cartoon Network/Warner Bros.
  • Lion-O wields the mystic Sword of Omens in ThunderCats

It was 1985 when Rankin/Bass Productions premiered their animated action series ThunderCats as part of the syndicated after school animation block that aired on most Tribune stations across the country. Every day, kids were glued to the set to watch Lion-O and his band of feline-humanoid warriors fight to create a new home on Third Earth and keep the evil mutants and their nemesis Mum-Ra at bay. Now 26 years later, Cartoon Network is giving the beloved series a reboot, complete with a new look, new characters and a new story. The new ThunderCats premieres Friday, July 29 at 8:00 p.m. on Cartoon Network.

In the original series, the Thundercats were a band of nobles: Panthro, Tygra, Cheetara, and WilyKit and WilyKat - assigned to protect a then cub Lion-O and the Sword of Omens as they escape the destruction of their home world, Thundera. Fleeing the Mutants invasion, Jaga, Lion-O's mentor, navigated their ship to a new planet, Third Earth while the others were placed in suspended animation to survive the long journey. The ship crash lands on Third Earth and upon awakening, they learn Lion-O's suspension capsule was damaged and he's grown to an adult. This sets up the premise of the various trials and moral lessons Lion-O learns along the way as the Thundercats set up their new home on the planet. During the '80's, the FCC required children's programming to be informational or have an educational component per episode. For the ThunderCats series, this involved a 30-second, moral recap at the end of each episode.

Those days are long gone and today's looser regulations for children's programming affords Cartoon Network to add new depth to the Thundercat mythos.



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