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View Full Version : Why Thundercats will have a hard time making a comeback



JediTricks
08-24-2002, 04:05 AM
It's long been discussed among forums such as these that MOTU shouldn't be the only '80s action figure line to return from the dead in the 21st century, and one of the top lines that always seems to come up is Thundercats. I've long speculated that Thundercats would have a hard time coming back because the company that held the license and made the toys, LJN, went out of business a decade ago and the license may have gotten bought or lost in legal mumbo jumbo.

Well, it turns out I was wrong and Thundercats will have a very hard time making a comeback because LJN wasn't the license-holder, they INVENTED the license to ride the popularity of MOTU! This is super-bad news because LJN went under hard and was torn asunder in bankruptcy issues, so for another company to bring Thundercats back to market, they'd have to track down ALL the creators and owners of the concept and get them to sign off allowing someone else to make these toys.

I am bummed, this line deserves to live again and it doesn't seem like it can.

sith_killer_99
08-24-2002, 08:06 AM
That is too bad.

I was looking forward to a new Mum Ra figure.

I bet these would have been done similar to the new He-Man figures.:crazed:

QLD
08-24-2002, 04:23 PM
I thought the cartoon was OK. I never liked the toys at all. I had some friends who did, and I never understood it.

TheFrankEinstein
08-24-2002, 06:34 PM
Well there's a new comic book series, so would that lead to the conclusion that someone sought out the rights? Or would that be a seperate matter from the toy line/cartoon?

pthfnder89
08-24-2002, 09:02 PM
Thundercats would definitely be an awesome liscense to see make a comeback. But considering it was really a clone of He Man (although a really good one) in so many ways, I'm not really missing it.

evenflow
08-25-2002, 08:37 AM
I still thank that i can happen. Some one could try to pick up the rights. I can hope.

JediTricks
08-27-2002, 04:30 AM
Originally posted by TheFrankEinstein
Well there's a new comic book series, so would that lead to the conclusion that someone sought out the rights? Or would that be a seperate matter from the toy line/cartoon? It depends on the original comic license. It's possible the original license holder for making the comics never lost the license and pulled a Hasbro '95. ;) (a reference to Hasbro, who had bought Kenner only a few years before, starting a new Star Wars line before their license w/ LFL expired)

But it's also entirely possible that someone out there DID track down the LJN license holders and pulled a few teeth, which would be a tiny sliver of a ray of hope. :D

Beast
08-27-2002, 02:05 PM
I was reading around on the net the other night JT, and saw somthing intresting on He-Man.org's forums. I wish I would have bookmarked it. But apperantly when LJN liquidated their properties and holdings, the rights to Thundercats was sold to Hasbro. They held the rights until late 2001, when it was purchased by another company that requested to not be revealed. That could be McFarlane, since he's always so secretive about the things he purchases. Though seeing how Mattel is handling the new He-Man line, I pray that it's them. :)

MTFBWY and HH!!

Jar Jar Binks

Patient Zero
08-27-2002, 02:11 PM
Hell, If McFarlane is going to produce them all buy em' all. Gotta collect them all!

JediTricks
08-28-2002, 02:08 AM
CRAP! I totally missed an opportunity, all I had to do was flip open the copy of Thundercats I saw in the comic shop today (Wildstorms, right?) and look, but I was too distracted with other stuff. That will probably tell us in the credits or legal stuff where it came from.

El Chuxter
08-29-2002, 10:56 PM
If it's possible, Four Horsemen Thundercats would rule! :D

RooJay
09-10-2002, 05:36 PM
According to the legal indicia on the front page of the comic, Thundercats is apparently now jointly owned by Warner Bros. and some guy whose name I can't recall at the moment. All hope is not lost! I'm still hoping that Mattel will be able to pick up the toy license and will have the Four Horsemen help produce a MOTU compatible Thundercats line. If I had the energy I'd start a petition for it.

JediTricks
06-06-2012, 06:40 PM
Well, this seems as good as any a thread to talk about the New Thundercats line.

So yesterday at Target, they had a single Lion-O from the new cartoon on clearance, so I bought him because the show has been alright. The figure line has not been a home-run so far though, and I suspect Bandai will bail on it soon.

Lion-O bottom line is terrible. There are enough joints to get the figure moving ok, although the lack of bicep-swivels really hurt things, but it's the ugliness of how they went about all of it. Many of the joints are cheap rivets that don't even match colors, tan arms with black joints, it's bad. There's a lot of gaps at the joints and at the waist armor area to enjoy a greater range of motion, it's too bad they couldn't sculpt to a tighter look but it's not a disaster.

The shoulder armor doesn't move at all, so Lion-O is horribly limited on the right side, and it seems that armor will break if pushed. The head only moves one way due to the armor, and not much of that either.

The head sculpt is very soft, the painted eyes are the only indication of where the "face" elements would be, it looks like a 3D texture map rather than a cartoon character.

The figure comes with 3 accessories: the sword of Omens as a dagger, the sword as a sword, and the gauntlet as a gauntlet. There's no gauntlet as a hip sheath, nor a way to attach the gauntlet to the hip at all, though the dagger can be clipped to the inside of the gauntlet and still be worn over the left fist normally, which looks good. Both swords are very gummy light-gray plastic, and both fit loosely in the right hand and well in the left, but the figure can't hold in both hands at once which is tragic. The full sword of Omens is tall, but the hilt is too thick to be put over the eyes. Both swords have the eye of Thundera sculpted in the hilt and painted red, but no black paint for the eye-slit (and no TC logo on either side).

The figure's back has a notched out section with a magnet inside, it makes the figure look quite incomplete and sloppy from behind, the instructions say it's for interacting with vehicles but I can't imagine it's that important.

The bottom line is this figure's a loser, and it's no surprise the line isn't doing well if this is the main character. Lion-O looks like a little kid in daddy's armor, he can't take the best poses, he's got sloppy thick paint and difficult articulation issues, and he's just not terribly good as a figure in general.

El Chuxter
06-06-2012, 09:48 PM
I picked up WilyKit and WilyKat for Chux Jr for Christmas.

Then I read reviews of them and took them back a few days later.

RooJay
06-07-2012, 08:35 AM
This is all par for the course with Bandai, in my experience. I really wish they'd have let someone else (Mattel) have the Thundercats license.

JediTricks
06-07-2012, 02:09 PM
Good choice Chux.


I hear ya Rooj, Bandai to me used to mean quality like the Gundam US figures, but almost everything else they've done lately has been C-quality garbage to match their mediocre Power Rangers figures, and it's shamefully bad. That said, Mattel has been so inept with figure lines lately, too many cancellations and problems, so I dunno if they would have been the right avenue, but they'd have put out better product than Bandai (assuming they got it out). Hasbro I think would have made the best figures, but the line probably wouldn't have made a strong enough showing to justify Hasbro's time. It's like Thundercats is now caught in between apathy and quality.

El Chuxter
06-07-2012, 03:33 PM
A common issue came about with Snarf and the Thundertank. The Thundertank had a trunk of sorts, which could only be opened from the outside by using the chip in Snarf. It just so happens that the trunk was exactly the right size for Snarf to fit in. The Snarf chip is not powerful enough to unlock the trunk from the inside. As you can imagine, a lot of kids decided Snarf would "hide" in the trunk. Which meant either the Thundertank had to be broken to get him out, someone had to purchase a second Thundertank, or the kid just didn't have Snarf anymore.

JediTricks
06-08-2012, 05:40 PM
Brilliant, so glad to hear Bandai thinking ahead and designing toys for children. Not sure what species of children they're designing for, though.

JetsAndHeels
06-19-2012, 02:28 PM
JT, Lion-O was also my first and only purchase from the line.

I think after I bought it I only handled it enough to know it sucked, then off to the box of forgotten toys it went.

El Chuxter
06-19-2012, 03:07 PM
I saw a pack at Target the other day on clearance. It had Mumm-Ra (mummy form), Lion-O, Snarf, and, I think, both Tygra and Panthro. (Snarf was previously only in the tank, which made no sense.) It was $12. I'd never seen it before. Even at $3 or $2.40 per figure, it seemed a ripoff.

JediTricks
06-19-2012, 04:21 PM
I know that Lion-O is going to end up in a box, but I wanted to keep him on the shelf a little longer - yet every time I see him, the first thing I notice is the black shoulder hinge and the awful head sculpt. But what's the point of keeping this figure in a box? I don't know, I am asking myself that question, should I just throw it out as a consumable? I can't legally donate it, the law now prevents donating toys thanks to the lead scare, and I don't know any kids who would want it.


Chux, was that pack the regular figures? I hadn't seen that before, that's quite a set, and yeah, even at $12 not worth it. I'm still ever so slightly tempted to get the Thundertank, I guess that'd make Lion-O work with that and the only real reason to keep him.

El Chuxter
06-19-2012, 06:00 PM
Yup, regular figures, looked like straight reissues with a "Target exclusive" sticker. Not sure why I didn't see them before they hit clearance, or maybe I did and forgot them.

Problem with the Thundertank is, to make it show-accurate (well, up until the upgrade), you'd need two of those little bike things that attach to it.

JediTricks
06-21-2012, 12:27 AM
It seemed to me if you actually added the bikes, they'd be way out of scale to the tank. I'd prefer the dummy drones that are already on the tank, really.