Feel the Magic, Hear the Roar!

Thundercats are loose!

As a kid growing up in the 80’s I had my pick of cool cartoons: G.I. Joe, Masters of the Universe, Transformers, Dungeons & Dragons, and Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends. Nothing was cooler than Thundercats, though. A couple of weeks ago I splurged and bought myself the complete, original Thundercats series on DVD. I’ve been watching it ever since, and I found out I still love it.

Despite having many miniatures in their 7TV line that I salivate over, I’ve only ever placed one order to Crooked Dice, because shipping is absolutely insane between Britain and the US. As a result, I couldn’t get everything I wanted all at once, but I made sure these awesome “Beastman Heroes” were in the order. They were supposed to be painted as part of the Year of Pop Culture; but like so many of my painting projects last year, I didn’t get to them.

This set contains Panthro, Lion-o, Tygra and Cheetara. Crooked Dice also makes miniatures of Wilykit and Wilykat; and they make a Snarf miniature. They didn’t make the cut on this order. I can do without Kit and Kat, and Snarf is more annoying than any other cartoon character I can think of, with the possible exception of Gleek, the Wonder-Twins’ pet space monkey on Super Friends. No big loss there. (Come to think of it, that unicorn on the D&D cartoon was pretty fucking annoying, too.)

So let’s talk about the sculpts. They’re pretty good, with the exception of Panthro, who happens to be my favorite Thundercat. Panthro is smart enough to design and build the Thundertank, strong enough to LIFT and throw the Thundertank with a full load of passengers in it, and tough enough to kick the asses of all the other Thundercats one at a time or all at once. Plus, he uses nunchaku as his weapon, which automatically makes him cooler than anyone who doesn’t. And he’s voiced by the guy who played the grandfather on the Cosby Show. His sculpt is pretty meh, though, especially when compared to the others. He’s just standing there; and his weapon doesn’t have the telltale cat claw handles, nor does it have a chain connecting the sticks. He’s still a cool figure, he just could have been a lot better.

Up next is Tygra, hands-down my favorite sculpt in the set. Tygra is probably my second-favorite Thundercat next to Panthro. He’s the architect of the Cat’s Lair, he can turn invisible, and he uses a bolo-whip. He’s pretty cool. The miniature is fantastic.

Cheetara can run really fast, which is why I guess they sculpted her running. I find it an odd choice, considering all the other Thundercats are brandishing their weapons; but it’s a pretty good sculpt nonetheless. I would have been happier to see her posing with her staff, like in the intro.

Lion-o is also a wonderful miniature; although in the cartoon, he’s my least favorite Thundercat of the main four. Voiced by the great Larry Kenney, he probably has the most iconic and recognizable voice on the show (at least among the heroes). When they did a Thundercats revival on Cartoon Network a decade or so back, Larry provided the voice of Lion-o’s father. (I actually thought he was playing an elder version of Lion-o, which would have been fucking AWESOME; but I was wrong.) I didn’t watch much of it, because I wasn’t a fan of the art style.

The Mutants of Plun-Darr were the main antogonists for the Thundercats: Monkian, Vultureman, Slithe and Jackalman.

Monkian is my favorite mutant and my favorite sculpt.

Slithe comes in a close second, both for favorite mutant and favorite sculpt.

Jackalman’s sculpt is fine, I guess. Jackalman annoyed me a lot.

Vultureman’s sculpt is pretty lame, the worst of the bunch. Come to think of it, Vultureman is pretty lame. He wasn’t one of the original mutants. Vultureman just showed up one day, like he’d been there all along.

“Ancient Spirits of Evil…Transform this decayed form…to Mumm-Ra…the Ever-Living!” Of course, no set of Thundercats miniatures would be complete without Mumm-Ra, or as he’s called over on Crooked Dice’s store, “Abomination.” Crooked Dice makes a buff version of Mumm-Ra, too (i.e. the “transformed” version), but once again, I had to pick and choose. Maybe someday.

I thought I got that mold-line; but it sure shows up nice when it’s painted.

Since I’ve been re-watching Thundercats, I’ve found myself slipping into the voice of Mumm-Ra without warning.

“You dare ask Mumm-Ra to mow the lawn?! Your insolence tempts the wrath of Mumm-Ra, the All Powerful!!”

“This coffee has grown cold. Mumm-Ra is displeased! Bring forth a fresh cup, lest you be destroyed!”

“Your loyalty to Mumm-Ra has been rewarded. Your time-off request has been granted!”

Guess what? Turns out not everyone appreciates Mumm-Ra.

This project was originally intended for last year’s Year of Pop Culture. This is not a Monster May(hem) post. More monsters to come soon, but in the meantime, check out all the other participants this month at their respective blogs/Instagram accounts and show your support!

  • Simon, from Fantorical
  • Dave, from Wargames Terrain Workshop, has of course sculpted his own miniatures for the first two submissions: a Dragonkin warrior and a Clawed Fiend. Both look wonderful!. He’s also done some GW Dark Elf Khymera, some models I didn’t know existed!
  • Matt, from PM Painting has completed the creepy J├Âtunn Moder from The Ritual, and it looks better it does in the movie!
  • Jeremy, from Carrion Crow’s Buffet
  • Roger, from Rantings from Under the Wargames Table
  • Azazel, from Azazel’s Bitz Box
  • Jon, from Jon’s Hobby Desk
  • Snapfit, from Da Green Horde
  • Mark A. Morin, from the eponymous markamorin.com.
  • Tom, @The_Goodground has painted a creepy demon miniature, a storm elemental, a Rat Ogre and an objective marker so monstrous it counts as a monster! You can see them over on his Instagram!
  • Malcolm, @mdcampbell_dunwichcreatives has painted thee monsters so far, a Runequest Walktapus, a classic Grenadier Shadowrun miniature, the Feathered Serpent and a Reaper Carrion Crawler! So far, he’s posted the Walktapus on his Instagram account, but he’s posted all of them on Discord. You can see them in my #miniatures channel on the Discord server, if you have access. If you don’t, ask!
  • Mike, @sasquatchminis is still hard at work on a White Dragon. He has also posted some WIP shots to the Discord server.

I don’t want to point out the obvious to my regulars here, but the Instagram crowd is kicking our asses! It’s a challenge, not a competition….but still…

Let’s get painting!

6 thoughts on “Feel the Magic, Hear the Roar!

  1. Matt

    Excellent, excellent work on all these, Keith! You’ve really captured the looks of the cartoon originals, although I have to admit to watching all of one episode LOL!

    1. The Angry Piper Post author

      Thanks, Matt! Watching it now, it definitely shows its age, but I don’t care. I always liked the show, even though there are some truly terrible episodes. One thing I didn’t remember is that they brought back recurring characters, and there actually was a progression in the storyline. It wasn’t just “here’s a new friend/enemy this week and we’ll never see them again once this episode is over.”

  2. Dave Stone

    Fantastic work on all Keith, you’ve really captured the essence of each character with the colours and markings, you just need to scrathbuild some vehicles to go with them now ! LOL Sorry my comment is so late, for some reason your new post hadn’t showed up in my blog feed

    1. The Angry Piper Post author

      No worries, Dave! I think this post got screwed up because I published it before and subsequently deleted it. That’s because I painted the Cats and Mumm-ra, but whined about how I didn’t get the Mutants. I thought I bought the Mutants. I could have sworn I bought the Mutants.

      And then I found the Mutants, so I had to paint them first and change the post.

      I’m not much of a scratchbuilder, and even if I was, a Thundertank might be a bit beyond my abilities!

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