In a turn of events not dissimilar to last week’s X-Men: First Class photo leak fiasco, Warner Bros Animation have decided that – following the recent fan taken snap of the character designs showcased at the London Toy Fair – they should go ahead and release the first official promo shot of the ThunderCats team in action.
The picture itself doesn’t reveal too many details that weren’t already visible in the unofficial image. In fact, we can spot only two. The first is that this incarnation of Tygra will still have his pretty awesome triple-ball ended whip. The second is that Lion-O will still have traditionally pale hands beneath his Claw Shield gauntlet, with the newly drawn jagged divide between shades succeeding in making this look like a fur pattern, rather than just an unfortunate tan line.
What is really of interest, though, is the accompanying press release, which boasts that:
Roaring to life through WBA and Studio4°C’s use of the Japanese animated artistry of anime, “ThunderCats” characters Lion-O, Mumm-Ra, Panthro, Cheetara and others will spring off the screen with realistic cat-like characteristics inconceivable in previous incarnations.
Presumably they mean the fur detail mentioned above, rather than those cat-like sideburns? Click to enlarge the image.
The show’s synopsis is billed as follows:
The new “ThunderCats” will appeal to viewers who have loved the characters all their lives as well as young newcomers to the franchise. A sweeping tale combining swords and science and boasting ferocious battles with the highest of stakes, the grand origin story of Prince Lion-O’s ascension to the throne – and of those who would thwart his destiny at any cost – takes on epic dimensions in this sharp new telling. As the forces of good and evil battle each other in the quest for the fabled Stones of Power, Lion-O and his champions learn valuable lessons of loyalty, honor and mortality in every episode.
The use of the word “mortality” is particularly intriguing. Could the new ThunderCats contain on-screen deaths? Or is the press release supposed to read “loyalty, honor and morality”? It would be slightly less exciting, but heck, it sounds great either way!
ThunderCats will be executive produced by Sam Register (Teen Titans, Ben 10, Batman: The Brave and the Bold), with Michael Jelenic (Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Wonder Woman) and Ethan Spaulding (Avatar: The Last Airbender) as the producers. It is due to air on Cartoon Network later this year.