Thunder, Thunder, THUNDER CATS, ROAAAAAR! A New Design for a new generation.
The above-featured fanmade image (by Brazil-based illustrator Gabriel Soares (Artstation / Behance) truly left a good chuckle in my heart, when I first noticed it on my #Facebook-stream - with a cheeky tag that mentioned all other "upcoming" cartoon character franchises getting the redesign in the style of the recently announced "Thunderctas Roar" (recognisable in "Steven Universe") ... reminding me of my own apprehension of the design interpretation seen/featured a couple days back ... but also my eventual "acceptance", that perhaps THIS is the "Thundercats" meant for THIS generation, as was the 2011 anime-esque styled incarnation had been for that era, and the "classic" 80s version pop-culture
As much as my reactions are formed from my own personal preferences and memories, it is also not necessarily "about me/myself/I", and about the property and concept being introduced and perhaps even relevant to this digital age, to a whole new generation of folks ("commercial viability" notwithstanding LOL).
(*The redesigns have made the characters looking "younger" each time, haven't they? LOL)
(Above: "Thundercats" 2011 opening / Below: WonderCon Preview)
I'm currently lecturing classes on film design, and have referenced a number of pop culture films from the 80s to now, but the simple reality that most of my 18-19+ year olds might not have watched my beloved 80s' film, is not, and should not be a "surprise". Actually, it is as "exciting" as there are so many films they could eventually "discover" watching too!
Having just screened for them a film made in the late-90s (my first ever feature film, in my earlier lifetime...), and recognising I am showcasing a film that premiered before they were even conceived in their mothers' wombs, is not only "humbling", but also the reality of "time".
With given "age", we (AKA "Folks in my similar age bracket") have had the chance and opportunity to witness the myriad of incarnations of our beloved fictional cartoon/anime characters through the years - good or bad - and the likelihood of "our" children and the current younger generation, having the chance to see and enjoy and embrace something familiar to us, is not necessarily a "everyday", or given thing, IMHO.
I may not be able to relate to the new design-style, but maybe the "current" folks can? And then it'll be up to them to search out the earlier incarnations, if it gets their attention ... wouldn't that be great?
("Thundercats, Roar" Opening)
I parallel it somewhat to "toy design" ... folks who might've just delved into the toy-community not too long ago, first liking what they see on the toy-shelves, or conventions (or perhaps even on blogsites such as TOYSREVIL? :p), then being able to purchase what they like, and researching more into the designer and company that makes these collectibles, and finding out an entire retrospective of the designers' work and releases, perhaps even through the decades! Or even thru the past few years, and being exposed to the scene and community beyond that toy shelf they had seen the toy sitting on in the first place!
The wonder of "discovery" is as powerful as our collective memories of the past we are still trying to hold on to everyday (well, maybe 'not as powerful', but I hope you know what I am trying to say here :p) and I reckon we should give some space for that to be fulfilled too, IMHO.
"Cartoon Network sucks now because all the characters look the same"— Ismael Bergara (@Calavera145) May 21, 2018
See? I can do some dumb cherry picking as well! ♥ pic.twitter.com/mZyJm4Ig48
I chuckle to myself as I hold on to this notion, sidestepping my current situation, especially having had over two decades worth of personal collecting history - from the frenzy that which literally led to the moniker "TOYS R EVIL", to the trickle and heartache everything I blog about awesome toys I cannot afford ... but oft times remembering the toy-joy I had felt since buying my first "Michael Lau", or even a Qee, Be@rbrick or Dunny ...
As much as the uproar and negativity I have been seeing/reading online about the "new redesign" of "Thundercats Roar", I am also grateful to see, and be woke to the excitement of the other side of the divisive spectrum, of folks who embrace the designs.
Will I myself watch "Thundercats Roar" when it goes on air in 2019? Probably not deliberately, no. Do I need to hate on it? Nah, I've other retro-reboots to "fuss over" LOL .... and there are always the DVD boxsets to sate my memories, innit? Not to mention the toys to collect LOL
To each his/her own opinions and preferences, and everyone's rationale and reasons are valid in their own circumstance, of course. This post is just mine that which I had wanted to share :)
Ending this post with a rendition of Lion-O here by @gabriel.soareszz, and not forgetting the age of fanart where we will get to see our fav character characters in an infinite array of artistic interpretations!
...and for you 80s' diehards, OF COURSE I have the intro to the cartoon for you!
UPDATED: (Select) Comments from folks/readers on both my Facebook and Instagram featured/added here, for your reading pleasures. (*No permission was asked to publish these, DM me if you want your quote to be deleted, no worries).
"It’s literally all the same design though.
Not creative at all in my opinion :/" (Cheyenne Gutierrez)
"It's like comics--some styles just grow on you. For example, I loved
Bill Sienkiewicz's style from the 80s. In the 90s, I found John Romita Jr.'s
style weird. But I appreciate them both now." (Francis Paolo Tiopianco)
"F**king hate this 'new generation' BULLSHIT! Always have! Always will!!!
The classic and 2011 reboot should be FOREVER ENOUGH for everyone EVER
in existence! ... But I guess retards need a version as well...
Hipster retards that is." (Zahui Patrick Nándor / here)
"Thundercats Noooooooo" (Jackson King)
(Select+Edited Comments on my Instagram):
"Perhaps they could have at least considered calling this version of Thunder Cats,
Thunderkitties, or Thunderkiddies to stay in theme of the new “look”..." (@dsilvafish)
"I saw the trailer and it looks very promising.
I like that they are not just doing a remake." (@wilmmyburgh)
"Screw this Thunderc**t shit.. More millennial Bullshit.. Let's just f**k up
one of the greatest cartoons of all time.." (@m.anthonybarrett)
"A "Dungeons and Dragons" reboot in a cartoony style
could actually be pretty cool..." (@benerator)
"Burn that art, bury the ashes, then salt the ground above so that nothing
grows for a hundred years. It's lazy art without substance, dimensional
depth, and has no purpose for conveying any sort of personality unique to
the character it's applied to." (@jinsaotome)
"I'm interested to see how this new thunder cats goes, the only reason
I'm unimpressed with it and the new Ninja Turtles is that it seems like
Americans have forgotten how to draw." (@barakaslam)
"No thanks". (@rocket_bullwinkle)
"What have they done to Thundercats?!" (@themightysequoyah / here)